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Which Bike to get for a Beginner with a $400 budget?

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Which Bike to get for a Beginner with a $400 budget?

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Old 03-31-10, 07:01 PM
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kosmo886
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Which Bike to get for a Beginner with a $400 budget?

Hi Everyone. I am new to biking and looking for a solid entry level mountain bike. I don't intend to do anything too hardcore, mostly roads and dirt trails but would like something that will hold up well and looking to spend up to $400 and ideally a little less. I don't know a whole lot about bikes, so any information would be helpful. Here are some of the options I have found so far.

K2 ZED 4.4 from sports authority
Diamondback Response from Dicks sporting goods
Nishiki Colorado from Dicks sporting goods
GT Outpost Disc from REI
Novara Portal Bike from REI
Raleigh Talus 4.0 from REI

Thanks for the help!
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Old 03-31-10, 07:21 PM
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cryptid01
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go to a proper bike shop

explain your intended riding and your budget

test ride per their suggestions

repeat as many times as practical

buy the bike that's most comfortable

enjoy
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Old 03-31-10, 08:51 PM
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mx_599
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hi kosmo886

Welcome to BF!

I hope you learn much
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Old 03-31-10, 09:29 PM
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Joshnir
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I'm deciding on a first mountain bike as well, I agree about going to a bike shop and riding many different brands, it helps a lot. Have you checked out the Gary Fisher Tarpon or Advance?
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Old 04-01-10, 05:39 AM
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The Diamondback response isn't a horrible choice for an entry level bike at that price ($350 or less on sale). Performance sells the bike for about the same price as Dicks. The biggest problem with the bike from Dicks will be the quality of the assembly. Some of the stores have unskilled assemblers and others have department managers who used to work as mechanics in bike shops.
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Old 04-03-10, 11:26 PM
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Dicks bikes frames = aluminum cans or steel plate
They are not very good and either fragile or heavy. Id hit a bike store, and worst case scenario rei if sales reps are nice enough.

The only good way to determine what bike you like is by riding it. If your bike shop has nice guys who want to help, you will leave with a good thing. Make sure to test drive and never buy without it.

In the case your lbs is like mine (bunch of complete %*^&^&*#^ who just want you to buy most expensive thing because it is "rad" and looks cool), then try looking at some of the 3xxx series of trek, or the hardrock series by specialized.

Generally both are good beginners bikes and tough granted your not jumping them like freestyle course bikers. I have tried both the standard hardrock,and trek 3900 and there both amazing.

400 is cutting it pretty close, and really very few bikes will be under unless they are pre enterence level (most bikes at dicks) If you can get it up to 500, you'll be set.


The hardrock sport disc is selling at eriks bikes for 517 right now. It is un arguably one of the best value for price bikes, and very very durable. It also has disc brakes, a near must if you need to stop really quick on trails, or have really good stopping power in rain, mud, or anything nature can throw at you.

Just make sure you test drive the bikes, and choose what ever feels best.
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Old 04-04-10, 03:51 AM
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My wife and I just went to "Performance Bicycle" and picked up a 2010 GT Avalanche 3.0 Disc for $380. They have a sale going on, and it ends today. This bike retails for $550. We also picked up a 2010 GT Avalanche 1.0 Disc for $765, which normally retails for around $900.

The 3.0 is not going to withstand big jumps because of some of the "value" hardware on it, but after spending a day with this bike, I can honestly say that it is a very nice bike for the money, and I really like it. I've done a little bit of trail-riding with it, and it seems solid. It's not the lightest bike on the market, but it's not the heaviest, either. The nice thing about it is that this model and the top model both use the same exact frame, and it comes down to a matter of components separating the most expensive one from the least expensive one.

The tires on this bike are "sticky" on asphalt. They don't turn real well, and there's some rolling resistance because of the knobbys, but it's a mountain bike; it's not supposed to come with street tires.

Anyway, sale ends today. They really have some nice specials going on. IMO, and I'm not just saying this because I bought this bike, but I firmly believe this is the best bike in an under-$400 price range that you are going to find.

Best of luck to you on finding the bike that's right for you.
 
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Old 04-04-10, 09:03 AM
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There are a lot of bikes for beginners which are inexpensive. Go to bike stores and choose the one you think has the best quality that fits your budget.
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Old 04-04-10, 12:26 PM
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Hoosier
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Personally, about 4-5 years ago when I was looking to buy my bike I went into a bike shop and looked/asked around. I ended up buying a Giant Boulder bike that was under/around $400... and I LOVE it to this day. Obviously, with any bike, if it comes with disc brakes, that will drive up the cost quite a bit (im looking to get disc brakes soon, however, now that I have some more money).

I also dont know what the consensus is on this forum, but I absolutely hate grip shifters....I will only buy a bike with the finger lever shifters. Good luck buying your bike!!! Take pictures and post 'em once you get it.
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Old 04-04-10, 03:20 PM
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Honestly, I wouldn't spend $400 on a new bike. You'll get a much better bike looking on the used market. I just snagged a 1998 GT Zaskar with XT/XTR bits for $200 on the mtbr.com classifieds, and a 2002 Jamis Dakota AL with LX/XT bits for my wife for $200 on craigslist. Both are much, much better bikes than you could get for the same price new.
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