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Mountain bike under $ 1800 ?

Old 10-06-19, 05:14 PM
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ArturL
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Mountain bike under $ 1800 ?

What bike will be best for riding in the woods and gravel? I care about fun and speed.

I was thinking about these bikes:


Santa Cruz Chameleon D
Specjalized Stumpjumper ST Alloy 29
Specjalized Fuse Comp 6Fattie
Giant STANCE 29 2
Trek Stache 5
Giant Fatchom 29 1
Norco Fluid Ht 2
Diamondback carbon pro 29
Trek Pro caliber 6

Thx for help.
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Old 10-07-19, 06:02 PM
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rodgeman
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Which can you test ride? Can you rent them for a weekend?
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Old 10-07-19, 06:16 PM
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In your list you have 29ers and 27.5+ tires. I have a fluid + that I really like. But for speed perhaps a 29er may be faster?
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Old 10-08-19, 05:56 AM
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ArturL
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I'm tall so I would rather choose 29.. before buying I will definitely try a few bikes in the store. I wonder most about Stache 5. is this a good bike?
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Old 10-09-19, 12:55 AM
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Those are all reasonably nice bikes, but that's kind of a shotgun of a list. Your description of what you want is vague enough to be basically useless. Gravel implies really mellow terrain, "in the woods" could mean anything between flat, even trails to death inducing technical, steep terrain. Fun and speed depend on what you find fun and for what terrain you want to go fast on!

On your list, you have some XC race bikes (the Pro Caliber, the Diamondback Carbon), a bunch of trail hardtails, some with plus tires (the Fuse, Stache, Fathom, Fluid) and some with standard width tires (the Chameleon), and some entry level full suspension trail bikes (Stumpjumper, Stance).

At that price range at MSRP I'd recommend against a full suspension bike for most riders--your money goes farther with a hardtail, and you can get a very nice hardtail for <$1800, instead of a somewhat compromised full suspension bike. Of course if your out the door price range is 1800, you're very likely to be able to find a bike with an MSRP of $2200+ on sale around this time of year, at which point you start seeing dropper posts and better suspension components, at which point the bikes get much more compelling. Some shops sell off demo inventory--it really depends on how heavy their use has been, how well they've been maintained, and how heavily discounted they are--but they can be a really good deal.

Unless you decide you want something that's more of an XC race bike and don't plan on descending technical trails quickly, prioritize getting a bike with a dropper post. Also prioritize the quality of the suspension fork--the drivetrain and brakes matter less to on-trail ride experience.

Stache 5 is a neat bike. I used to work at a Trek retailer and they're pretty fun to ride, and are something of a unique product offering. Plus tires (especially 29+) are nice on hardtails for general trail riding duty because they provide a little natural suspension and great traction, though they ultimately can limit suspension travel somewhat. The Stache 5 has some nice features like a decent fork and a dropper post stock. It's a particularly good choice if your local terrain is relatively loose. A conventional width tire may feel better on relatively good soil conditions, particularly riding smooth terrain for longer distances.

Last edited by cpach; 10-09-19 at 01:05 AM.
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Old 10-12-19, 07:11 PM
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The Stance is a decent FS bike if that is what you are looking for, I have a 2015 Stance 27.5 and still ride it regularly. I now save it for easy trails and around the neighborhood as I have a much better FS bike also, but if you feel you need FS, it is a decent starter full suspension bike. Of course if you are willing to add just a little more to the purse, a Giant Trance 3 lists for $2100 and that is a fair upgrade from the Stance, it adds the VPP style suspension which is noticeable better.
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