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  1. #1
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    2016 Diamondback Mason Trail - Review, Thoughts, Discussion

    I have been looking to replace my 10 year old 26" hardtail for some time and my buddy, Unit91MS, came across the Diamondback Mason Trail. I have had it for a week and am very impressed with how much you get for the money. I want this post to be an outlet to tell what I have learned with this bike, answer any questions you might have, and provide accurate measurements of the bike.

    First off, this bike is a screaming deal. I bought it direct from Diamondback for $750. The MSRP is $1400 and Diamondback is the only place that sells it that cheap. When you go to the website, you have to go to retailers and then be directed to shop.diamondback.com. My carton shipped from Ohio and got to Michigan in 3 business days. It took 4 days to get to Buffalo for my other friend that bought one.

    Reasons for Buying:
    The bike may have budget parts, but it has all of the best standards to upgrade from.
    Fork has an air spring, boost spacing, and 15mm TA
    Threaded BSA bottom bracket, (don’t have to worry about press fit bearing!)
    Hydraulic brakes with 180mm rotors front/rear
    Tubeless compatible rims
    Rear boost spacing with 12mm TA
    Grips have two lock rings per side, one on the outer end and one on the inner end
    ISCG 05 mounting tabs
    1x drivetrain with 30T front sprocket

    Some discrepancies I found from the specs listed online are:
    Both rotors are 180mm
    Tire width is actually 2.8”

    Assembly:
    Assembly is straight forward. The website even has a tab of “Assembly” which makes it very easy to follow along and get the bike set up, even for a novice. A quick note, there is no bracket to space out the brake caliper on the fork. The post mounts are set up exclusively for 180mm rotors. If you are freaking out because there is no bracket, just put the caliper on and everything will line up. The derailleur was adjusted fairly well out of the box, but it is a good idea to go through and make sure everything is adjusted properly. I waited to take a ride before removing the plastic shield between the cassette and wheel.
    I had to remove the right hand brake lever and reroute it through the frame as it was incorrect. Not a huge deal. Also note that the front brake hose goes between the fork and the wheel.

    Fit:
    I bought a medium because I am medium for everything. I am 5’7”, with long arms and short legs. Below are some dimensions of me, and of the bike.

    Dimensions In mm
    Height 67 1701.8
    Wingspan (tip to tip) 73.5 1866.9
    Inseam 30 762
    Hip bone to ground 33.5 850.9
    Top of bent knee to foot 21 533.4
    Inseam 30 762
    First knuckle to mid shoulder 25 635
    axle to axle 45.5 1155.7
    Chainstay horizontal 17 431.8
    Chainstay along tube 17.25 438.15
    BB to seat clamp 16.75 425.45
    Stand over (3" in front of seat) 28.5 723.9
    Bar width 30.5 774.7
    center seat post to bar 26.5 673.1
    axle to crown 23.5 596.9

    I have the seat post maxed out past the recommended line. So be aware you might need to get a longer seat post. The reach feels good. A little tighter than I am used to, but I have had no issues riding it so far. I cannot hit my knees on the handlebar when riding.

    Me standing over bike flat footed

    Me failing to touch the ground when sitting on the saddle


    Feet on platform pedals


    Another sitting on the bike


    Inside of rear cassette with plastic guard


    Inside of rear cassette with plastic guard removed


    Rear cassette and derailleur


    Chain stretch on largest sprocket


    Chain stretch on smallest sprocket


    Cranks


    Inside of chainstay (needs to be covered)


    Back of seat stay, internal routing?


    High direct mount for front derailleur


    Bottom bracket. Mmm welds


    Stem and Handlebar


    Headtube


    Fork lockout


    Fork arch


    Rebound adjuster


    Front brake. Notice no adapter, the SR Suntour Raidon has post mounts meant for 180mm rotors


    Rear brake


    Right brake lever and shifter


    Left brake lever


    Actual tire width of , 2.8” for Chaoyang Big Daddy 27.5x3.5"


    Seat clamp and seat post. Note that its maxed out even with my short legs.


    Soon to go tubeless!
    Last edited by scrapmetal57; 06-24-2016 at 04:17 AM.

  2. #2
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    First ride impressions:
    The grip is unreal. Over sandy rooty climbs I never lost traction. I haven’t been able to corner hard enough to lose the rear tire.

    I need to sand the brake rotor and pads as they are howling. I must not have bedded them in correctly. They still stop, but vibrate and make a lot of noise.

    The brake levers are awful if you want to one-finger brake. I moved the housing inboard and need to try to adjust the levers out more. I was squishing my middle fingers when braking.

    The fork pressure was set very high from the factory (120+ psi). I set it to about 75 psi and it seems to be a good place to start. For reference I am 150 lbs. Rebound is set in the middle and might need a little more fine tuning.

    The geometry seems to be working pretty well. I have no issue climbing and I have more confidence going downhill compared to my old hardtail.

  3. #3
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    Good write up, glad you enjoy your new ride!

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    Nice write up dude. Chaps my ass a bit that I spent so much on my fuse then found this for you guys.

    Another thing to note is the rebound adjustment is incredibly vague on the fork. The knob doesn't have any feedback so it's tough to tell where you are in adjustment. I believe I saw someone, maybe in the Norco thread actually had their rebound knob come off when adjusting.

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  5. #5
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    I could loosen and tighten it all the way without it coming off. But yes there were not clicks or anything. I'm not convinced it really does much either. But again for the price I can't complain. I'll just save for a Yari

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    Quote Originally Posted by scrapmetal57 View Post
    I could loosen and tighten it all the way without it coming off. But yes there were not clicks or anything. I'm not convinced it really does much either. But again for the price I can't complain. I'll just save for a Yari
    It made a small impact but agreed, very minimal. The yari will change the way you view life.

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  7. #7
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    Nice write-up; thanks. Fed-Ex is scheduled to drop off an XL Mason Trail for me today and I'll post some impressions as well. $750 was just to good of a deal to pass up giving one of these a try.
    Everything in moderation. Including moderation.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by CuzinMike View Post
    Nice write-up; thanks. Fed-Ex is scheduled to drop off an XL Mason Trail for me today and I'll post some impressions as well. $750 was just to good of a deal to pass up giving one of these a try.
    Unit91 and I have convinced 3 other friends to purchase the bike too! They all seem very happy with it. The Mason Trail seems like a great bike for both experienced and novice riders.
    I wonder if Diamondback gives out rewards for selling their bikes....

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    Hey, great post. Lots of useful info. This will be my first time back riding since about 15 years ago and my first bike since. It's still in the box, cannot wait to have it ready to go.

    I have a question though. I have been reading up on going tubeless and noticed the rims that came with Mason Trail are tubeless ready, but the tires are not. Do you think there will be any issue using these tires as tubeless? I was looking at a new pair of WTB Rangers, but I'm cutting really close on my budget as I need a helmet, and multiple pumps(shock pump etc) and other misc items to do this right.

    Thanks!

  10. #10
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    Got my XL Mason Trail delivered tonight. Ordered Monday, delivered today with free shipping. Can't beat that.

    I just put mine together and have only ridden it along the block so I can't add anything detailed, but will say this.

    - The stock generic Chinese tires are marked 3.5, but I'll concur that they are only 2.8s.

    - External rim width is a scant 32mm according to my micrometer. My "non-plus" 29er with Velocity P-35 rims are wider than these, so not really a true plus bike as it sits. I'm not even sure if I'd want to put full 3" tires on rims this narrow.

    - Build quality seems good for the price and the transmission shifts flawlessly out of the box. I'm impressed with this new Deore stuff, and I'm used to riding XTR on my 29er. We'll have to see how well it does on the trail.

    - The seatpost is too short. XL bikes shouldn't come with 350mm posts, so that will get swapped immediately.

    Fit-wise it seems smaller than my other XL frames. I'm 6'4" with a 36" inseam. If I was any taller I would likely be too big to this frame.

    All that said, for 750 bones shipped it's still a pretty screaming deal that leaves plenty of room in my budget to upgrade. I'll post a more thorough review after I get some trail time on it.
    Everything in moderation. Including moderation.

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    Great write up been waiting for some good reviews to come in to justify this bike. How long do bikes usually stay on db featured bike shop ? Going out of town so would like to wait till next week to order. Is the frame compatible with a internal dropper post? can't tell by there pictures. I'm 6,0 maybe 6,1 with a 32 Jean inseam I'm guessing the large would be the adequate size for me? Btw your pictures are not working.

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    Are the tires wire bead? Also, how is the rolling resistance on them?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Thabreit View Post
    Great write up been waiting for some good reviews to come in to justify this bike. How long do bikes usually stay on db featured bike shop ? Going out of town so would like to wait till next week to order. Is the frame compatible with a internal dropper post? can't tell by there pictures. I'm 6,0 maybe 6,1 with a 32 Jean inseam I'm guessing the large would be the adequate size for me? Btw your pictures are not working.
    Pictures working for me. Large seems like it would be the size for you, but it comes down to personal preference.

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    Pictures are not working for me.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by CuzinMike View Post
    Got my XL Mason Trail delivered tonight. Ordered Monday, delivered today with free shipping. Can't beat that.

    I just put mine together and have only ridden it along the block so I can't add anything detailed, but will say this.

    - The stock generic Chinese tires are marked 3.5, but I'll concur that they are only 2.8s.

    - External rim width is a scant 32mm according to my micrometer. My "non-plus" 29er with Velocity P-35 rims are wider than these, so not really a true plus bike as it sits. I'm not even sure if I'd want to put full 3" tires on rims this narrow.

    - Build quality seems good for the price and the transmission shifts flawlessly out of the box. I'm impressed with this new Deore stuff, and I'm used to riding XTR on my 29er. We'll have to see how well it does on the trail.

    - The seatpost is too short. XL bikes shouldn't come with 350mm posts, so that will get swapped immediately.

    Fit-wise it seems smaller than my other XL frames. I'm 6'4" with a 36" inseam. If I was any taller I would likely be too big to this frame.

    All that said, for 750 bones shipped it's still a pretty screaming deal that leaves plenty of room in my budget to upgrade. I'll post a more thorough review after I get some trail time on it.
    I saw on the site that the rims were only 32mm. I thought that a true 3.5" tire would be pretty unstable. But does the frame provide enough space for a 3.5" tire if there was one?

    -F
    It's never easier - you just go faster.

  16. #16
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    I measure about 0.4" of clearance on each side of the stock tire. I imagine on a wider rim a true 3" tire would fit fine, but I doubt if anything larger would.
    Everything in moderation. Including moderation.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CuzinMike View Post
    I measure about 0.4" of clearance on each side of the stock tire. I imagine on a wider rim a true 3" tire would fit fine, but I doubt if anything larger would.
    That's just over 10mm.

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    Are the tires wire bead? Also, how is the rolling resistance on them?

  19. #19
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    I updated all the pictures. Apparently Imgur doesnt like to host images. So I moved them all to photobucket, which was way easier.

    Quote Originally Posted by djembe975 View Post
    Are the tires wire bead? Also, how is the rolling resistance on them?
    Tires are not wire bead and RR isn't noticeable worse than my 26er. These tires are pretty decent.

    Also this wheels were the easiest tubeless conversion I have ever done. Unmounted easily, went back on easily, and seated immediately.

    I also measured at over 12.5 oz per tube.

    Left over night I lost no air pressure.

    I rode a twisty trail yesterday at 15 psi and that was too high. I'll probably go to 12-13 psi. My gauge is awesome. Link to amazon. 0-30psi, peak hold, and $15






    My homemade tire sealant. I made about a gallon for under $30. Each of these bottles is 16.9 oz and I used about 4 oz per tire.




    I also wrapped my chainstay in some blue carbon look handlebar tape. No more chain slap! Plus it looks pretty good.


    2016 Diamondback Mason Trail

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    Care to share that recipe for the home made sealant? Stans is quite pricey in my opinion.

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    Quote Originally Posted by triathloner View Post
    Care to share that recipe for the home made sealant? Stans is quite pricey in my opinion.
    From looking at it, I'd say it's McDonald's Strawberry Milkshake. It has the bits too.

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    Quote Originally Posted by xgsjx View Post
    From looking at it, I'd say it's McDonald's Strawberry Milkshake. It has the bits too.
    Knowing scrapmetal, that sounds about right. Strawberry milkshake. Just add glitter.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Unit91MS View Post
    Knowing scrapmetal, that sounds about right. Strawberry milkshake. Just add glitter.

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    Gives a bit of bling & smells nice when you're riding.

    Shame they're not available in the UK, especially at that price.

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    I ordered the Mason Pro Last night. I've only ever ridden a fully rigid 26. We shall see...

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by xgsjx View Post
    From looking at it, I'd say it's McDonald's Strawberry Milkshake. It has the bits too.
    Here are three threads that I saved for the concoction.
    Homemade Tire Sealants or Brews
    Exhausted with tubeless goop.
    DIY tubeless sealant? « Singletrack Forum

    You can get fancy and add different things to it. I kept it simple and its been working great for me so far.

    1 container (16 oz) of Latex Mold Builder

    5-6 parts RV Antifreeze, (contains propylene glycol). I put in enough to get to about 3/4 gallon of total fluid

    A few containers of different size glitter. I think I found purple in a few different sizes. Some people say to shave old tubes and use the rubber particles, but that is a huge pain in the ass. The glitter seems to be doing just fine. You can add a bottle of Slime instead to get the particles, but I wanted to try the cheapest route.

    Then mix and enjoy.

    I had about 3/4 of a gallon when i finished and it was under $25. Figure 4 oz per wheel, that come out to 24 plus tires, or 48 regular tires.

    Stans = $0.86/oz
    My special sauce = $0.26/oz
    Nice little cost savings.
    2016 Diamondback Mason Trail

  26. #26
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    Has anybody confirmed that those tires are indeed the same as panaracer fat-b-nimbles? There's anecdotal evidence on the internets that say they're made in the same factory, and from the look of the tread, its identical.

    Anyway, if they are the same as the FBNs, expect them to grow just a little bit. Mine are now just about 2.9" at the tread and casing on i35 rims. Your rims are just a bit wider at 38mm inner, I believe.

    Not a bad tire to start with, but I cant wait to wear mine out and swap in nobby nics or rekons.

    EDIT: I just read that you measured the rims as 32mm external, so thats different from the advertised 38mm internal rim I expect it to come with. I doubt they'll grow any bigger than 2.8 in that case. Be careful with rolling the tire over the rim. Even on my i35s, they get a little squirmy.

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by CuzinMike View Post
    Got my XL Mason Trail delivered tonight. Ordered Monday, delivered today with free shipping. Can't beat that.

    I just put mine together and have only ridden it along the block so I can't add anything detailed, but will say this.

    - The stock generic Chinese tires are marked 3.5, but I'll concur that they are only 2.8s.

    - External rim width is a scant 32mm according to my micrometer. My "non-plus" 29er with Velocity P-35 rims are wider than these, so not really a true plus bike as it sits. I'm not even sure if I'd want to put full 3" tires on rims this narrow.

    - Build quality seems good for the price and the transmission shifts flawlessly out of the box. I'm impressed with this new Deore stuff, and I'm used to riding XTR on my 29er. We'll have to see how well it does on the trail.

    - The seatpost is too short. XL bikes shouldn't come with 350mm posts, so that will get swapped immediately.

    Fit-wise it seems smaller than my other XL frames. I'm 6'4" with a 36" inseam. If I was any taller I would likely be too big to this frame.

    All that said, for 750 bones shipped it's still a pretty screaming deal that leaves plenty of room in my budget to upgrade. I'll post a more thorough review after I get some trail time on it.
    What do you think needs upgrading?

  28. #28
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    I'm seriously thinking about pulling the trigger on one of these. What's the actual weight of the medium?

    I'm sure this will be a life changing move for me. I'm new to MTB and ride a Vilano 29er. Next week I'm inheriting a 26"Diamondback sorrento that's been upgraded with a Reba and running 1x10. I just want something of my own.

  29. #29
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    Eventually I'll upgrade to wider rims and better hubs. For now I have a 400mm seatpost on order since I'm already at the limit line on the stock post and I still want the seat higher (I have a 37" inseam). I'll also add a higher rise bar. I wish they'd have left the steerer tube uncut so I could add another spacer. Being tall is no fun in the bike world. I also swapped out the stock grips for Ergons just because they're what I prefer.

    I spent about 2 hours on the trail with Mason today and I'm impressed. I love the geometry of this frame compared to the XC geo of my singlespeed on more technical terrain. It's super stable on the downhills and flats, yet I had no problems keeping the front wheel down on technical climbs. The tires were fantastic, to be honest. I didn't lose traction in places I normally do. Brakes are OK, not great but passable; more power would be nice, but they are silent. I weigh 190 and set the fork at 110psi. I used about 3/4 of the travel on some 2ft drops.

    So far I'm impressed. I honestly can't see a downside to plus tires if you ride for fun like most of us do.
    Everything in moderation. Including moderation.

  30. #30
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    Mike, I agree on most fronts. Wider rims, better hubs, and better brakes are what I would change first. I am going to take off my seat (Specialized Phenom), carbon fiber seat post, grips, and maybe handlebar. The diamondback handlebar is a little wide for some of the trails around here. Great for downhill, not great for technical tight tree stuff.

    I will note that the rear brake is howling/squealing and vibrating like mad. I already tried to sand down the disk and pads and re-bed the brakes, but that didnt help. My plan is to sand the rotors down more and try again. if that doesn't help I am going to swap over one of my extra 160mm rotors and just take the spacer off to convert the rear to 160mm. But again I am going to replace the brakes as soon as I can, I hate the modulation and lever actuation. Plus they aren't that good to begin with. Probably end up going with Shimano XTs because I have a bunch of Shimano mineral oil left over and they are fairly bulletproof and not crazy expensive.
    2016 Diamondback Mason Trail

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    Quote Originally Posted by scrapmetal57 View Post
    Mike, I agree on most fronts. Wider rims, better hubs, and better brakes are what I would change first. I am going to take off my seat (Specialized Phenom), carbon fiber seat post, grips, and maybe handlebar. The diamondback handlebar is a little wide for some of the trails around here. Great for downhill, not great for technical tight tree stuff.

    I will note that the rear brake is howling/squealing and vibrating like mad. I already tried to sand down the disk and pads and re-bed the brakes, but that didnt help. My plan is to sand the rotors down more and try again. if that doesn't help I am going to swap over one of my extra 160mm rotors and just take the spacer off to convert the rear to 160mm. But again I am going to replace the brakes as soon as I can, I hate the modulation and lever actuation. Plus they aren't that good to begin with. Probably end up going with Shimano XTs because I have a bunch of Shimano mineral oil left over and they are fairly bulletproof and not crazy expensive.
    Keep in mind your old bars are 31.8. Dbacks are 35.

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    FYI for those wondering about what to set fork pressure to. Pressure is set by sag, or % of total suspension travel when loaded with bodyweight. Diamondback recommends 15-30%. This is an exert from their owner's manual.

    The “SAG” (negative spring stroke) is the compression that is caused solely by the body weight and the position of the rider. The “SAG” depends on the position and weight of the rider and should be between 15% and 30% of the fork’s max travel depending on the intended use and preferences.
    2016 Diamondback Mason Trail

  33. #33
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    I've been also eyeballing this bike. Yesterday, I found a crack in my SC Superlight 26er frame and will need to replace it. I've been looking for an excuse to get into a + tire frame. Good part is, I have a lot of high(er)-end parts on my SL that will swap over to this bike. My only concerns are the fork, hubs and rims. Also, I'm not sure if I read this, but does the frame have a threaded bottom bracket?

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    Quote Originally Posted by MiWolverine View Post
    I've been also eyeballing this bike. Yesterday, I found a crack in my SC Superlight 26er frame and will need to replace it. I've been looking for an excuse to get into a + tire frame. Good part is, I have a lot of high(er)-end parts on my SL that will swap over to this bike. My only concerns are the fork, hubs and rims. Also, I'm not sure if I read this, but does the frame have a threaded bottom bracket?
    Has a bsa bb with iscg05 tabs.

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    So I found out today after talking to the LBS that the OEM pads are organic and garbage. The Tektro Auriga are on a lot of base level bikes. I ordered a set of sintered pads from Disco Brakes. Apparently the pads are the same as Shimano M525.
    Here is a link for those interested
    You can get replacement pads at CRC/Jenson/etc but I have had good luck with Disco Brakes and their prices are awesome. Plus you get many different pad material options.
    2016 Diamondback Mason Trail

  36. #36
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    To answer some earlier questions:

    Quote Originally Posted by Thabreit View Post
    Great write up been waiting for some good reviews to come in to justify this bike. How long do bikes usually stay on db featured bike shop ? Going out of town so would like to wait till next week to order. Is the frame compatible with a internal dropper post? can't tell by there pictures. I'm 6,0 maybe 6,1 with a 32 Jean inseam I'm guessing the large would be the adequate size for me? Btw your pictures are not working.
    Not sure how long it will be available. It's been a few weeks so I don't think you have anything to be worried about. Can't hurt to call DB and ask them. When I called asking if I will void my warranty by putting the bike together myself (it won't) they were very helpful and fun to talk to.
    I am not sure if it is compatible with an internal dropper. There is an access hole on the back of the seat stay above the BB, but I haven't figured out what its for. The top of the line DB Mason uses a KS Lev DX which has external routing. I can take a closer look. And as suggested before a L frame should work.

    Quote Originally Posted by JK85 View Post
    Hey, great post. Lots of useful info. This will be my first time back riding since about 15 years ago and my first bike since. It's still in the box, cannot wait to have it ready to go.

    I have a question though. I have been reading up on going tubeless and noticed the rims that came with Mason Trail are tubeless ready, but the tires are not. Do you think there will be any issue using these tires as tubeless? I was looking at a new pair of WTB Rangers, but I'm cutting really close on my budget as I need a helmet, and multiple pumps(shock pump etc) and other misc items to do this right.

    Thanks!
    Wheels are already set up to go tubeless. All that is needed is valve stems, sealant, and to remove the tube.
    The procedure I used was:
    -Air down tubes
    -Take off one side of tire (I did it by hand, didnt need tire levers)
    -Remove tube
    -Install tubeless valvestem (a universal one will work fine)
    -Pour in 4 oz of sealant
    -Install tire onto wheels
    -Pump up tire to ~30ish psi to make sure it seats completely. I used a floor pump but made sure that most of the tire bead was close to the edge
    -Hold wheel horizontal and smack the side of the tire on the ground to get sealant on the bead and seal it. Rotate and repeat on the other side

    My tire sealed right away, if you find that there is some leaking I would leave the wheel on its side over night to get sealant to cover the leak and seal it.

    I am a huge fan of these tires and wouldn't suggest upgrading them right away. I think new brake pads are far more worthwhile.
    2016 Diamondback Mason Trail

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    Quote Originally Posted by scrapmetal57 View Post
    To answer some earlier questions:


    Not sure how long it will be available. It's been a few weeks so I don't think you have anything to be worried about. Can't hurt to call DB and ask them. When I called asking if I will void my warranty by putting the bike together myself (it won't) they were very helpful and fun to talk to.
    I am not sure if it is compatible with an internal dropper. There is an access hole on the back of the seat stay above the BB, but I haven't figured out what its for. The top of the line DB Mason uses a KS Lev DX which has external routing. I can take a closer look. And as suggested before a L frame should work.



    Wheels are already set up to go tubeless. All that is needed is valve stems, sealant, and to remove the tube.
    The procedure I used was:
    -Air down tubes
    -Take off one side of tire (I did it by hand, didnt need tire levers)
    -Remove tube
    -Install tubeless valvestem (a universal one will work fine)
    -Pour in 4 oz of sealant
    -Install tire onto wheels
    -Pump up tire to ~30ish psi to make sure it seats completely. I used a floor pump but made sure that most of the tire bead was close to the edge
    -Hold wheel horizontal and smack the side of the tire on the ground to get sealant on the bead and seal it. Rotate and repeat on the other side

    My tire sealed right away, if you find that there is some leaking I would leave the wheel on its side over night to get sealant to cover the leak and seal it.

    I am a huge fan of these tires and wouldn't suggest upgrading them right away. I think new brake pads are far more worthwhile.
    I was wondering do you need the rim tape also?

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    Quote Originally Posted by scrapmetal57 View Post
    To answer some earlier questions:


    Not sure how long it will be available. It's been a few weeks so I don't think you have anything to be worried about. Can't hurt to call DB and ask them. When I called asking if I will void my warranty by putting the bike together myself (it won't) they were very helpful and fun to talk to.
    I am not sure if it is compatible with an internal dropper. There is an access hole on the back of the seat stay above the BB, but I haven't figured out what its for. The top of the line DB Mason uses a KS Lev DX which has external routing. I can take a closer look. And as suggested before a L frame should work.



    Wheels are already set up to go tubeless. All that is needed is valve stems, sealant, and to remove the tube.
    The procedure I used was:
    -Air down tubes
    -Take off one side of tire (I did it by hand, didnt need tire levers)
    -Remove tube
    -Install tubeless valvestem (a universal one will work fine)
    -Pour in 4 oz of sealant
    -Install tire onto wheels
    -Pump up tire to ~30ish psi to make sure it seats completely. I used a floor pump but made sure that most of the tire bead was close to the edge
    -Hold wheel horizontal and smack the side of the tire on the ground to get sealant on the bead and seal it. Rotate and repeat on the other side

    My tire sealed right away, if you find that there is some leaking I would leave the wheel on its side over night to get sealant to cover the leak and seal it.

    I am a huge fan of these tires and wouldn't suggest upgrading them right away. I think new brake pads are far more worthwhile.
    Awesome, thanks for the play by play. This will help a lot with my first time going tubeless.

    @Daholla77 He told me in a pm that they come pre-taped.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JK85 View Post
    Awesome, thanks for the play by play. This will help a lot with my first time going tubeless.

    @Daholla77 He told me in a pm that they come pre-taped.
    Do you know if he had to drill the wheel for the stem.

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  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by xgsjx View Post
    From looking at it, I'd say it's McDonald's Strawberry Milkshake. It has the bits too.
    Quote Originally Posted by Daholla77 View Post
    Do you know if he had to drill the wheel for the stem.

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    It really is that easy. You use the hole from the stem attached to the tube. The tape was already installed.

    The steps I listed are literally all you have to do. I promise I didn't skip anything!


    Also fun fact, the Tektro Auriga brake pads are the same as Shimano M535. I bought a bulk pack from Disco Brakes for $20 of semi-metallic. I'll report back how they work.
    2016 Diamondback Mason Trail

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    Quote Originally Posted by scrapmetal57 View Post
    It really is that easy. You use the hole from the stem attached to the tube. The tape was already installed.

    The steps I listed are literally all you have to do. I promise I didn't skip anything!


    Also fun fact, the Tektro Auriga brake pads are the same as Shimano M535. I bought a bulk pack from Disco Brakes for $20 of semi-metallic. I'll report back how they work.
    Thank you

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    Great thread. I received my Large Mason Trail a couple of weeks back and this is what I have to add. I am 6 ft tall with a 30" inseam and the large fits just right. I weight 260 and I think I'm running about 110-115 psi in the front fork. Tire pressures I can't remember right now, but I'm sure those will change after I go tubeless.

    Setup was really straightforward and easy, even for a novice like myself. I've picked up on some things I need to address from this thread, such as the brake routing, which I'll address this week. The only changes I've made from the stock setup thus far are ESI chunky grips and the addition of a WTB Speed saddle. The only other changes I have planned are converting to tubeless and replacing the brake pads as I'm having the same brake issues mentioned by others.

    I shopped this bike against the Fuse and Charge Cooker. For a few hundred less than the Cooker and for half of the Fuse, I am really pleased with the bike thus far. Keep in mind I'm a complete hack, and had not been on a trail for at least 15 years. This bike was picked up to replace a '97 Gary Fisher. For some reason I was charged sales tax in Texas by DB, so my tab came out to a little over $800 shipped.

    I am pleased with my purchase and would recommend. Thanks again for starting the thread.

  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by spankbomb View Post
    Great thread. I received my Large Mason Trail a couple of weeks back and this is what I have to add. I am 6 ft tall with a 30" inseam and the large fits just right. I weight 260 and I think I'm running about 110-115 psi in the front fork. Tire pressures I can't remember right now, but I'm sure those will change after I go tubeless.

    Setup was really straightforward and easy, even for a novice like myself. I've picked up on some things I need to address from this thread, such as the brake routing, which I'll address this week. The only changes I've made from the stock setup thus far are ESI chunky grips and the addition of a WTB Speed saddle. The only other changes I have planned are converting to tubeless and replacing the brake pads as I'm having the same brake issues mentioned by others.

    I shopped this bike against the Fuse and Charge Cooker. For a few hundred less than the Cooker and for half of the Fuse, I am really pleased with the bike thus far. Keep in mind I'm a complete hack, and had not been on a trail for at least 15 years. This bike was picked up to replace a '97 Gary Fisher. For some reason I was charged sales tax in Texas by DB, so my tab came out to a little over $800 shipped.

    I am pleased with my purchase and would recommend. Thanks again for starting the thread.
    I am the same height about the same on inseam. Glad that it fits you well. I am a big guy too 300+ buying one on thursday.

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    I have one of these too, and am very happy with it so far.

    The spec for $750 is ridiculous. External BB cranks with a narrow wide ring. Clutch derailleur with an 11-40 cassette, pretty good. Decent fork with a decent cockpit with a decent saddle and everything else. I paid $200 for a used up specialized hardrock, and this bike is replacing that and will be primarily used for kid toting and backup for when my main ride goes down.

    The tires roll very well. I've used them for an extended road ride and while not the best choice, they held up well. I'm sure at this price point that they are wire bead. There's no way they put folding tires on a $1500 bike. Good to know they are tubeless compatible. Not sure whether I'll go that route but I might try!

    I'll be anxiously waiting to hear your review of the upgraded pads. I think the brakes are surprisingly adequate for a budget setup, but I get the same howling and vibrating. I'm ready to swap for a pair of formulas or XTs that I have lying around, but if a set of pads will save them, I'll just save those for later. The modulation is good and overall power is adequate for trail riding, but they need help if you're going to get aggressive.

    I can't figure out a place for internal routing. There are bolts on the downtube that look like they could hold cable guides, and that rear port looks more like an internal guide for a post than a derailleur. You'd end up with a pretty gnarly turn in your housing if you went that route though.

  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by sandwich View Post
    The tires roll very well. I've used them for an extended road ride and while not the best choice, they held up well. I'm sure at this price point that they are wire bead. There's no way they put folding tires on a $1500 bike. Good to know they are tubeless compatible. Not sure whether I'll go that route but I might try!
    I wouldn't be too sure....
    Checking out Chaoyang's website, the 27.5x3.5 tubeless ready tire is a folding bead.

    Part No. Size ETRO Technology Compound TPI Bead Color Weight(g)
    W113095 275.5x3.5 89-584 Tubeless Ready 2C-MTB 120 Foldable Black 740
    2016 Diamondback Mason Trail

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    Do they say tubeless ready though? Did the bead feel flexible like a kevlar tire? I'll check when I get home, but I'd be amazed if it were a 740g tire on a 1500 bike!

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    Quote Originally Posted by sandwich View Post
    Do they say tubeless ready though? Did the bead feel flexible like a kevlar tire? I'll check when I get home, but I'd be amazed if it were a 740g tire on a 1500 bike!
    You're a little hung up on the price. The chaoyang/ FBN has been one of the least expensive fat/plus tires on there market for almost 2 years.

  48. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by sandwich View Post
    Do they say tubeless ready though? Did the bead feel flexible like a kevlar tire? I'll check when I get home, but I'd be amazed if it were a 740g tire on a 1500 bike!
    You are correct, I am not 100% sure if they are tubeless ready. I can check too when i get home. I didn't take the whole tire off the rim so I didn't check thoroughly for a wire bead. It didn't seem like it though.
    2016 Diamondback Mason Trail

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    Quote Originally Posted by tfinator View Post
    You're a little hung up on the price. The chaoyang/ FBN has been one of the least expensive fat/plus tires on there market for almost 2 years.
    Maybe, but this is a very common place to skimp on parts spec. I would be honestly shocked to see a bike at this price point with a narrow wide ring, clutch derailleur, plus wheels/tires, external BB, alloy cassette, as well as kevlar tires. I guess it's possible, but it's sort of like finding out the seat rails are also titanium, the chain is XTR level, the hubs are high engagement, the spokes are double butted, etc. These are all places that MFGs shave spec so they can put more obvious high end spec on their bikes.

  50. #50
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    Maybe this is some kind of marketing stunt. Have us advocate and sell the bikes for Diamondback. They save on advertising and distribution
    2016 Diamondback Mason Trail

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    Quote Originally Posted by scrapmetal57 View Post
    Maybe this is some kind of marketing stunt. Have us advocate and sell the bikes for Diamondback. They save on advertising and distribution
    It's worked so far. Combined we've gotten what, 4 purchases?

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    I also own a Century disc that I got for a wicked deal from Jenson. There's so much value in these bikes it's silly. The century wasn't half as nicely specced as the mason though.

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    I got my Mason Pro yesterday. Got a sweet discount through work. Thing is killer from the brief ride around the block I did. Only problem I have right now is the KS lev dropper post is too high for me at it's lowest point. I'm 5'10 and so I'm either maxed on the medium or low end of the large frame. So I went large... Hoping my shoes will compensate cause it's just a tad bit high. Will post further later.2016 Diamondback Mason Trail - Review, Thoughts, Discussion-mason.jpg

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    Add one more if still available next week, I'm debating between med and large. I'm in between sizes.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jatrma View Post
    Add one more if still available next week, I'm debating between med and large. I'm in between sizes.
    I am ordering mine either this Wednesday night or Thursday morning

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    Any advice on frame size?
    I new to MTB and not sure what to order.
    I'm a hair over 5'9" with a 31" inseam (measured barefoot)

    Right now I ride a junk 29er, when I borrow my buddies 26" medium diamondback I feel more upright and more comfortable. Both are considered a medium but his has a much shorter top tube.

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    I just ordered mine an hour ago. Should be a fun bike.

    I'm 5-10 with a 32" inseam and went with the large. It has similar geo to a number of my large bikes.

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    How much does the Mason Trail weigh? I am very intrigued, I could use this to get into bikepacking!

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    I was wondering how long did it take fir it to get to your house once you order the bike. I live N. California

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  60. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by kovarpa View Post
    How much does the Mason Trail weigh? I am very intrigued, I could use this to get into bikepacking!
    It was mentioned a few times earlier in the thread. In stock form its about 27.2 lbs for medium frame.

    Quote Originally Posted by Daholla77 View Post
    I was wondering how long did it take fir it to get to your house once you order the bike. I live N. California

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    Also mentioned early in the thread. It took 3 business days from OH to MI. Not sure if they have more distribution centers. Should take less than a week.
    2016 Diamondback Mason Trail

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jatrma View Post
    Any advice on frame size?
    I new to MTB and not sure what to order.
    I'm a hair over 5'9" with a 31" inseam (measured barefoot)

    Right now I ride a junk 29er, when I borrow my buddies 26" medium diamondback I feel more upright and more comfortable. Both are considered a medium but his has a much shorter top tube.
    I'm about the same as you, but a tad taller. I'm just shy of 5'10". I ordered the medium last night. Can't wait to get it!

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    Quote Originally Posted by flyinb501 View Post
    I'm about the same as you, but a tad taller. I'm just shy of 5'10". I ordered the medium last night. Can't wait to get it!
    I talked with Kevin via chat on diamondbacks website, he suggested I go with the medium. He also said he believes it will be available at this price through July.
    I'm just waiting on an insurance check to hit and I'll be ordering mine.

    Coming from what I ride now this is going to change my life.

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    Checked the tires on my personal bike, they are printed with H-5176 on them.

    This page: CHAOYANG Bicycle Tires-Big Daddy lists H5176 or H5176TR as model numbers. I'm guessing that means these aren't the "Tubeless ready" tires. That leaves either a single compound wire bead or two dual compound tires. Tough to tell by hand whether the factory tires are dual compound, but by the dirt pickup, I'm going with no.

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    Does anyone know if this bike is compatible with a dropper seat post?

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    Got mine a couple of days ago. Overall this bike is a steal at $750. Fit was great out of the box (6'-0", 32" inseam, bought the large). Excellent handling, great shifting, and the super wide handlebars were surprisingly comfortable. I even like the stock saddle. The Tektro brakes are the worst component by far. Stopping power is ok but the modulation is terrible. First wave of changes will be brakes (slx probably) and tubeless setup, then maybe new rims and/or wheels. Hub engagement is definitely on the slow side compared to my Stan's 3.3s. BTW, my main ride is a Salsa Spearfish, and the Mason will be a great change of pace bike.

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    I pull the trigger and I order one last nightin large.

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    Quote Originally Posted by flyinb501 View Post
    Does anyone know if this bike is compatible with a dropper seat post?
    yes, it is of course. top end models come from the factory with some.

    Whether it's compatible with internally routed posts is another question. There is a port on the BACK side of the seat tube, but there is no routing to that port. There are bolts on the underside of the downtube which could theoretically be used to hold cable guides, but the cable would have to take a pretty gnarly turn to get back into that port.

    I think the best option would be a KS Lev or other collar-mounted dropper post. There is a ton of space for routing a dropper along the upper cable guides.

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    Well add another to the list just ordered a large. Plus some tubeless stuff and a new fox hydration pack from Jenson. Pretty stocked to ride my first tubless bike. Should be a huge step up from my 2005 Raleigh m80

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    I ordered mine Tuesday night and received it this afternoon. Less than three days to Northern California. Apparently there is a west coast distribution center in SoCal.

    The bike went together quite well and I am impressed with what I got for $750. Normally I start replacing parts immediately (I have an unused XT 11-speed group with nowhere to go) but I decided I am going to ride it as-is for a while. I want to see if it can hold up to some abuse.

    This is by far the most slack head angle I have had. It will be interesting to see how the Mason handles compared to my Yelli Screamy (~68 degrees).

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    Hi, new guy here. Looking to get back into things after a long hiatus. Had been drooling over some Airbornes, but saw this thread and the price for the trail and it piqued my curiosity. Also found the Mason is only a few hundred more on Amazon with a Reba. I guess my concern with the DB is the crazy fork angle and how it handles on pavement. I'very got a 3 year old and will be towing him around a good bit of the time. I'm also in Delaware, so downhills are minor.

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    I'd get this anyway even though you're in Delaware. Plus tires make a hardtail ride softer with more comfort. You won't have a problem steering the bike on pavement at the speeds you'll be riding. The Raidon has a no maintenance sealed damper like a car shock. The Reba is open bath. So oil changes are necessary over time. And the dampers it comes with aren't that good. If they had a Fox 34 for the $250 more that would be different.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TripleTune View Post
    Hi, new guy here. Looking to get back into things after a long hiatus. Had been drooling over some Airbornes, but saw this thread and the price for the trail and it piqued my curiosity. Also found the Mason is only a few hundred more on Amazon with a Reba. I guess my concern with the DB is the crazy fork angle and how it handles on pavement. I'very got a 3 year old and will be towing him around a good bit of the time. I'm also in Delaware, so downhills are minor.
    I don't see the slack head tube angle as being any problem for pavement riding. If anything, it will track straighter on open roads.
    Riding Washington State singletrack since 1986

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    I'd been eying this bike simply as a backup and a "horse for the course" for different trails. I want a Torrent but the 7.2 w similar build is about 2x at retail. This thread turned me on to this bike and great price point. Regardless i would dump the Raidon for a better fork, upgrade brakes, wide range 10spd cassette, single ring, dropper post etc... so when all said and done - I'm still looking at $1500 but decent build.

    On amazon, Diamondback has the Comp on sales. in Medium its 1599 but does have a Fox34 w fit4 damper, better brakes, drivetrain and dropper post. It's likely the smarter buy based on upgrades Id make. IF a small were an option, they have the comp for an incredible price just under $1200 and Prime shipping!! Gonna keep an eye out for next weeks "prime days" and see if the Medium comp will come down in price.

    For $750 - the trail really is a steal in comparo to the rest of the options that are comparable.

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    What tire pressure are you guys running?

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    Thank you. All good insight. My issue now is seeing all the available diamondbacks. So last question on the this vs that topic and then i'my done. Mason trail vs overdrive comp?

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    Quote Originally Posted by TripleTune View Post
    Mason trail vs overdrive comp?
    The OD Comp is a useless(in a ht) straight 27.5. The Mason can run 29, 29+ front or 27.5+ which are close to 29 in diameter.
    The Comp is a noob first bike and the Mason is a multi-season next bike.

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    Well shit, I don't wanna look like a noob. Time to commit I guess. This diamondback thing is still so new to me. Checked out their road bikes and kids bikes. Looks like some good value and with the amazon sales things can be here in 2 days. Again, thanks for the input with questions that have probably been posted 100 times already.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TripleTune View Post
    Well shit, I don't wanna look like a noob. Time to commit I guess. This diamondback thing is still so new to me. Checked out their road bikes and kids bikes. Looks like some good value and with the amazon sales things can be here in 2 days. Again, thanks for the input with questions that have probably been posted 100 times already.
    The Mason Trail is 750 with free ship no tax.
    Diamondback Bikes, 2016 Mason Trail

    Put the order in at Amazon and then call CS to get a price match.
    https://www.amazon.com/Diamondback-B.../dp/B01FKZBACQ

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    Quote Originally Posted by eb1888 View Post
    The Mason Trail is 750 with free ship no tax.
    Diamondback Bikes, 2016 Mason Trail

    Put the order in at Amazon and then call CS to get a price match.
    https://www.amazon.com/Diamondback-B.../dp/B01FKZBACQ
    No tax unless you are in california

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  80. #80
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    Quote Originally Posted by eb1888 View Post
    The Mason Trail is 750 with free ship no tax.
    Diamondback Bikes, 2016 Mason Trail

    Put the order in at Amazon and then call CS to get a price match.
    https://www.amazon.com/Diamondback-B.../dp/B01FKZBACQ
    What's CS?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Daholla77 View Post
    What's CS?

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G920A using Tapatalk
    Customer service likely

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    Quote Originally Posted by Daholla77 View Post
    What's CS?

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G920A using Tapatalk
    CS = customer service


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  83. #83
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    Gotcha, it wouldn't have saved me because I live California and we have to pay taxes on Internet sales over a certain amount. It would have came out the same for me.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G920A using Tapatalk

  84. #84
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    Screw you guys. I hope someone is getting a cut for all these sales. Ordered mine. We'll see how it goes. I'm anxious to get back on two pedals. Thanks for this thread. Happy 4th!

  85. #85
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    Quote Originally Posted by Daholla77 View Post
    No tax unless you are in california

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G920A using Tapatalk
    Texas also has sales tax, I'm guess there is a distribution center in Texas.

  86. #86
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    Quote Originally Posted by TripleTune View Post
    Screw you guys. I hope someone is getting a cut for all these sales. Ordered mine. We'll see how it goes. I'm anxious to get back on two pedals. Thanks for this thread. Happy 4th!
    Scrapmetal nor I have received any royalty checks. We are open to donations though.

    Sent from my SCH-I545 using Tapatalk

  87. #87
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    Hopefully the moral satisfaction of creating a cult is enough. Double root canal and this bike have wiped me out. I do appreciate all the advice though.

  88. #88
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    Wow, great write up! I JUST bought this bike 5 days ago at the sale price. I'm digging it so far.
    Question: how do you adjust fork rebound? I didn't even know you could do that and mine seem kinda stiff.



    Sent from my SM-G900V using Tapatalk

  89. #89
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    Quote Originally Posted by KDOG72 View Post
    Wow, great write up! I JUST bought this bike 5 days ago at the sale price. I'm digging it so far.
    Question: how do you adjust fork rebound? I didn't even know you could do that and mine seem kinda stiff.



    Sent from my SM-G900V using Tapatalk
    Should be a little red knob on the right side fork lower. The rebound on my raidon only made very subtle differences. Your air pressure in the fork will have the biggest impact.

    Sent from my SCH-I545 using Tapatalk

  90. #90
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    Ok I see it.

    Sent from my SM-G900V using Tapatalk

  91. #91
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    Quote Originally Posted by KDOG72 View Post
    Ok I see it.

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    Your pressure will have more of an impact on "stiffness" though

    Sent from my SCH-I545 using Tapatalk

  92. #92
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    I'll have to look into it. I'd like my forks to give a little more.

    Sent from my SM-G900V using Tapatalk

  93. #93
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    Quote Originally Posted by KDOG72 View Post
    I'll have to look into it. I'd like my forks to give a little more.
    When you drop your front tire pressure down from 30 to 12 you'll add a lot of softness to the ride. Benefit of wide.

  94. #94
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    I was wondering should I put it together my self or take it to my friends shop? I have to pay 100 dollars if I take it to my friends shop. Or should I just do it myself. I change the oil in my car and I have changed the spark plugs quite often. So I have some mechanical know how. The only thing I am worried about is setting the shocks.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G920A using Tapatalk

  95. #95
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    You can watch some vids about Airborne and BikeDirect on Youtube. It's easy if you have a multi-tool. You'll need to buy a shock pump for periodic use. and to change the psi to get it where it works.
    You won't have difficulties, because there are vids on everything.

  96. #96
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    I just ordered mine!!!

    Hope it makes it here before the weekend

  97. #97
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    Ordered mine in a patriotic frenzy of beer and shark week Monday and just got shipping confirmation for Thursday delivery. With that logic, yours should be in Friday.
    Shit just got real. Already ordered a new helmet and fork pump. This thing is like a free puppy.

  98. #98
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    Quote Originally Posted by KDOG72 View Post
    I'll have to look into it. I'd like my forks to give a little more.

    Sent from my SM-G900V using Tapatalk
    Do you have a shock pump?
    Riding Washington State singletrack since 1986

  99. #99
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    Can you use a regular airpump with a shrader valve on it. To use for your shock pump.

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  100. #100
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    ordered mine Friday and it showed up at my door today. Only problem is it's still on the truck being no one was home to sign for it.
    Dahola you will need a pump designed just for air shocks and forks can be picked up anywhere from 20 to 40 bucks

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