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  1. #1
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    New to the 29er!

    Hey folks!

    So I had a few cheap (department store) bikes when I was a teenager, riding local/backyard trails but now with a real job and money, I could finally buy something more respectable.

    Yesterday I picked up a Trek X-Caliber 4, which I've ridden about 4 miles and already love. So now, my questions;

    What would be your top pieces of advice for someone starting out on more advanced trails?

    Any 29er-specific tips?

    Lastly, is there anything on the bike that I should replace immediately with something better than stock?

    Thanks for any help!

  2. #2
    Carbon8er
    Reputation: El34's Avatar
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    What would be your top pieces of advice for someone starting out on more advanced trails?
    Wear a good helmet
    The bike will follow the front wheel so make sure your front wheel sticks
    The back wheel is just along for the ride

    Keep your speed and momentum up when going over rocks, roots, etc

    It's easier to ride over stuff at a higher speed than a lower speed

    It's better to just point the bike up and over stuff rather than trying to turn the bars to avoid stuff at the last minute

    29'ers go over things easier than 26'ers because of the larger wheel diameter so enjoy your 29'er

    Balance is everything.
    get used to shifting left or right on the bike to change the balance point when avoiding objects or riding over objects.

    You riding clipless pedals?

  3. #3
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    Welcome to the forum and 29er's.

    I am also new to 29ers, got one at work and I am really liking it. Now I want one for home so I am looking all over, listening, trying to learn so I can get a good bang for my buck and get something worthy of upgrading. I am leaning toward a 2015 Trek Xcaliber 7 as I like almost everything about it and seems to have a good mid-range starting point from what I know so far. The Xcaliber seem to have a really good frame from what I can tell. Take my advice with a grain of salt as I am new to both modern bikes, 29er's and real trail riding but I would say ride the bike, get used to the bike, develop a list of what I like about it and what I don't like and then upgrade as you feel the need. That way you end up getting what feels right to you rather than getting what someone else thinks is right for you and then learn it does not work well for you and then need to upgrade again.

    One of the reason's I am leaning toward the 2015 Xcaliber 7 is because it has shifters I prefer, has a drivetrain I am used to, is a 29er, and comes with a fork that has features I like and from what I have read, is durable. That way if I get it, I can just replace things later when I know more and when things wear out.

  4. #4
    Carbon8er
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    If you are new, it's not a bad idea to buy a bike that you can afford to break parts on.

    I don't even want to think about breaking stuff on my XX1 carbon bike. The parts are crazy expensive

    I mind the rear derailleur position at all times when threading the needle between logs, rocks and roots.
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  5. #5
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    Clipless pedals for now, but I may look into clips eventually. Thanks for all the advice.

  6. #6
    Short-Change-Hero
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    Clipless is actually a misnomer, you are riding flats from what it sounds like. Clips would be clipless (where there is no real pedal body just a mechanism you click into.


    I would wait to upgrade until you get used to riding and either are wearing something out quickly or breaking it. Since it has been a while since you have ridden you will have to start getting your skills back so take it easy at the moment and re-acquaint yourself with the bike, trails, etc. Nothing worse than having a new toy and injuring yourself so you can't use it.
    Inbred 29r (Purple People Eater)
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    Bikes for Boobs F*ck Cancer! One too many, 6/24/13. Miss ya ma'.

  7. #7
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    The 75mm travel fork on that bike doesn't have rebound damping. Suntour forks(usually 100mm) with hydraulic lockout this year do. That shows up going over multiple bumps. rocks or roots at speed, usually on faster downhills. The front will pogo and try to bounce your hands off.

  8. #8
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    Flats and any bike are a good starting point - nothing else is all that different, just pay active attention to where your weight is in relation to the two contact patches of the bike. The biggest and easiest way to have a bad time is to be hanging out over the front wheel, or to lean yourself off to one side while the bike may not grip - all result in making contact with the ground yourself.

    The other advice is already somewhat covered - you'll be amazed at what stuff you can keep on the seat (or bring yourself just above the seat to clear small obstacles you're going up and over) and just monster truck over, and it's much more efficient to pedal that way.

  9. #9
    29ers Forever
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    Ride the bike on some more singletrack first, and then see what doesn't feel right to you. Then start a thread about what to replace that part with.
    The fork will probably be the first to go (Suntours don't last long when you actually ride the bike on a mountain). But other than that, ride the bike and have fun.
    2013 Trek Cobia- 29er
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    1994 Cannondale R300- narrow tire roadie

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