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Back in the saddle after 30 years. Looking for a new mountain bike

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Back in the saddle after 30 years. Looking for a new mountain bike

Old 04-04-21, 06:36 AM
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zeego 
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Back in the saddle after 30 years. Looking for a new mountain bike

Good morning everyone. I'm needing some recommendations on what brand of mountain bike to look for. Been out of the game for some time now and I need to get back in the saddle. I used to be a mountain bike psycho back high school. It was my life. Crazy to think that I rode an REI Novara without any suspension for 5 years. So, I'm very familiar with the sport, I'm just needing some guidance on what to look for these days. Obviously a lot has changed in 30 years. Should I buy used? New? My budget is $1250 - $1500. I don't need the best, but I don't want crap either. Just something reliable. I know its a wide open question but any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks a lot!

EDIT: Wow. I watched a couple of YouTube videos and I'm shocked on the options. I'm currently moving towards a 27.5 wheel hardtail.
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Old 04-04-21, 03:39 PM
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At your budget, you'll be in the hard tail category. Any bike shop brand should be good, but you can ask here to narrow down options. What do your local shops carry? More importantly, what can you find in stock?

Most brands put out bikes around the same price point that are comparable. If buying new, look for something that has modern geometry (long and slack). You can use https://bikeinsights.com/ to compare geometry between bikes.
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Old 04-05-21, 09:21 AM
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The Trek Roscoe line of bikes has some fun 27.5+ offerings in your price range
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Old 04-05-21, 10:36 AM
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Currently looking at the Giant Trance 29. After doing some research and speaking with a few people, they said definitely go with 29's and full suspension. A lot to decide!
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Old 04-06-21, 09:04 AM
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Giant Trance 29 is a solid choice for starting out. You can always upgrade components on it or upgrade to a whole new bike later if you want.
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Old 04-06-21, 10:49 AM
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Originally Posted by prj71 View Post
Giant Trance 29 is a solid choice for starting out. You can always upgrade components on it or upgrade to a whole new bike later if you want.
That's what I'm thinking. I'm going back and forth between getting a hardtail and an FS. I'm really liking the Salsa Timberjack 29 GX. One of the real turnoffs of the Giants for me are the ridiculously boring/bland color choices.
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Old 04-06-21, 11:00 AM
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I guess depending on your age and type of trail a hard tail my work for you.

I'm older (49) and most of the trails I ride are old school rake and ride single track...lots of rocks and roots so the full suspension is nice. I do have a hardtail but reserve it for the machine built trails which are a bit smoother.
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Old 04-06-21, 11:21 AM
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Originally Posted by prj71 View Post
I guess depending on your age and type of trail a hard tail my work for you.

I'm older (49) and most of the trails I ride are old school rake and ride single track...lots of rocks and roots so the full suspension is nice. I do have a hardtail but reserve it for the machine built trails which are a bit smoother.
Understood. I definitely need to confirm the general terrain around here.
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Old 04-06-21, 12:00 PM
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Katsup makes good availability and bike-similarity points. FWIW, I still ride a 1997 Specialized Rockhopper, and prefer 26" for mountain biking/bikes. When I was shopping for a FS bike a few years ago, I found a custom one on ebay for a fraction of new options, and with specific parts I wanted, including GripShift (by then SRAM-owned) which I had on my Rockhopper. I just installed Maxxis Holy Rollers on my BMC Fourstroke because I've found that I enjoy riding my 26-inchers in all sorts of terrains, including paved roads. BTW, I'm in my eighth decade of bike-riding, thankfully, and if I had to go to one bike, I'd keep this FS bike with these new shoes. One summary suggestion is to consider used, although you do need to shop especially wisely, AND patiently. I'm going to be selling a couple of my bikes soon, and buyers will be making excellent selections, if I do say so myself . Good luck with and enjoy your eventual choice.
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Old 04-06-21, 01:09 PM
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Originally Posted by BiciMan View Post
Katsup makes good availability and bike-similarity points. FWIW, I still ride a 1997 Specialized Rockhopper, and prefer 26" for mountain biking/bikes. When I was shopping for a FS bike a few years ago, I found a custom one on ebay for a fraction of new options, and with specific parts I wanted, including GripShift (by then SRAM-owned) which I had on my Rockhopper. I just installed Maxxis Holy Rollers on my BMC Fourstroke because I've found that I enjoy riding my 26-inchers in all sorts of terrains, including paved roads. BTW, I'm in my eighth decade of bike-riding, thankfully, and if I had to go to one bike, I'd keep this FS bike with these new shoes. One summary suggestion is to consider used, although you do need to shop especially wisely, AND patiently. I'm going to be selling a couple of my bikes soon, and buyers will be making excellent selections, if I do say so myself . Good luck with and enjoy your eventual choice.
Nothing wrong with riding older bikes. I rode a rigid fork for years in my high school days and got away with it fine. I don't feel the need to have the latest and greatest by any means. I just wanted to begin at a good starting point with a decent reliable bike. I'm leaning towards a hardtail for sure. Easier to maintain, simpler machines. The more expensive the bike, the more expensive the parts, etc.
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Old 04-07-21, 06:45 AM
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Hi
I been riding a Canyon Grand Canyon AL 6 from 2014 for several years and has been very happy with that. it's a hardtail with pretty good spec for the money. I just recently bought another Canyon, this time a full suspension and is equally happy with that.
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Old 04-07-21, 07:17 AM
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Originally Posted by autopeduffe View Post
Hi
I been riding a Canyon Grand Canyon AL 6 from 2014 for several years and has been very happy with that. it's a hardtail with pretty good spec for the money. I just recently bought another Canyon, this time a full suspension and is equally happy with that.
Thanks for the suggestion! These look really cool: https://www.canyon.com/en-bm/mountai...nfarbe=BU%2FBK
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Old 04-07-21, 10:37 AM
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The only thing I'll add is to pay attention to the fork that comes stock. Many are using lower level Suntour forks. Suntour does offer a trade in option, but it is not free. And if you think you need a better fork, and decide to do take advantage of their "trade in" policy, the fork still needs installed, so there is added expense there, unless you do it yourself.
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Old 04-07-21, 03:26 PM
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Originally Posted by zeego View Post
Thanks for the suggestion! These look really cool: (Canyon Hardtail)
It's been mentioned already, but bike availability is practically non-existent. Especially at this price point. Lots of good options for ~$1500 hardtails, but a quick search shows 'out of stock' on basically every site.

But still, a couple things to consider if you are able to find a bike in stock...

1. Your money is going to go further buying from one of the direct-to-consumer companies, i.e. Canyon, YT, Fezzari, Vitus, Ragley, etc. Depending on how comfortable you feel doing minor assembly and adjustment, this can be a great way to get better spec for the same price.
2. I'd be looking at Shimano groupsets only at this price point. Their new Deore is really nice (both drivetrain and non-series brakes). I wouldn't touch SRAM SX or Level brakes, which are also common at this price point.
3. I'd look for a bike with boost spacing front and rear (110/148) to ensure better compatibility with parts (both replacements and upgrades) in the future. $1500 hardtails sometimes have odd 141 QR or the older 135 QR frame spacing.

Good luck!
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Old 04-07-21, 05:49 PM
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Originally Posted by DETarch View Post
It's been mentioned already, but bike availability is practically non-existent. Especially at this price point. Lots of good options for ~$1500 hardtails, but a quick search shows 'out of stock' on basically every site.

But still, a couple things to consider if you are able to find a bike in stock...

1. Your money is going to go further buying from one of the direct-to-consumer companies, i.e. Canyon, YT, Fezzari, Vitus, Ragley, etc. Depending on how comfortable you feel doing minor assembly and adjustment, this can be a great way to get better spec for the same price.
2. I'd be looking at Shimano groupsets only at this price point. Their new Deore is really nice (both drivetrain and non-series brakes). I wouldn't touch SRAM SX or Level brakes, which are also common at this price point.
3. I'd look for a bike with boost spacing front and rear (110/148) to ensure better compatibility with parts (both replacements and upgrades) in the future. $1500 hardtails sometimes have odd 141 QR or the older 135 QR frame spacing.

Good luck!
Great advice. Thanks a lot. I've yet to do research on Shimano vs SRAM.
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Old 04-08-21, 05:38 AM
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Originally Posted by zeego View Post
Easier to maintain, simpler machines. The more expensive the bike, the more expensive the parts, etc.
Not really. The only thing full suspension adds a rear shock and few pivot bearings. Not THAT much more expensive.
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Old 04-08-21, 05:40 AM
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Originally Posted by DETarch View Post
It's been mentioned already, but bike availability is practically non-existent. Especially at this price point. Lots of good options for ~$1500 hardtails, but a quick search shows 'out of stock' on basically every site!
Not really. I just purchased a new Trek Domane. Placed an order and it took 2 weeks to get. Girlfriend just purchased a new Kona Woo Fat Bike. 2 close friends just recently purchased some Giant Trance bikes. When I picked up my Domane there were mountain bikes all over the sales floor.

It's not as bad as everyone thinks.
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Old 04-08-21, 10:12 AM
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Originally Posted by prj71 View Post
Not really. I just purchased a new Trek Domane. Placed an order and it took 2 weeks to get. Girlfriend just purchased a new Kona Woo Fat Bike. 2 close friends just recently purchased some Giant Trance bikes. When I picked up my Domane there were mountain bikes all over the sales floor.

It's not as bad as everyone thinks.
It's possible my perception is influenced by where I live...mountain bike inventory has been very tough to come by here in SoCal, with very few MTBs on shop floors. And that seems to be reflected in online retailers as well.

I certainly hope that availability is improving!
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Old 04-08-21, 10:57 AM
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Originally Posted by DETarch View Post
It's possible my perception is influenced by where I live...mountain bike inventory has been very tough to come by here in SoCal, with very few MTBs on shop floors. And that seems to be reflected in online retailers as well.

I certainly hope that availability is improving!
Here in the South East, there's nothing on the floors. I spoke with an LBS the other day and they told me they have 800 bikes on order and they just trickle in.
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