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  1. #1
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    Smile Am I under utilizing my all mtn bike?

    Looking into buying my first AM bike, pretty set on gt force 3.0 as performance has it and it fits my budget at around $1000. I weight 145lbs, 5'11". Previous bike was 1998 specialized HT. My riding consists of rooty/rocky rolling hills/flatish singletrack. I take the occasional trip to the NC mountains (pisgah). My biggest drops are 3-4 ft to flat(trail drops or loading docks). I will do the occasional 5ft high skinny with fairly vertical roll off @ the end. I can jump small(2ft not too far apart) doubles. I go about 23-25 mph on rooty/rocky terrain up in the mountains and will roll off fairly steep 12ft dirt dropoffs (not wheelie drop but roll off). I can throw small crossups off of tabletop jumps. Is this bike too capable or just right for what I'm doing? Should I go the XC full suspension route instead based on my riding style? Gt makes a gnarlier bike (the sanction) which seems to b too beefy/big hit for me and a less gnarly bike (the sensor). Thanks for your input! Want to make sure I'll use the bike to its full capacity and not be "overgunned".

  2. #2
    think
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    Someone lend this guy a tape measure.

    If you are pinning it 25 mph down mountainsides sending it off 12 footers on a 1998 hardtail your next bike should be a DH race rig. You got a future in this sport.

  3. #3
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    By your description an all mountain bike is suited for your style. More relaxed angles and more suspension promotes hitting the rough, steeps, drops, and air. Whether you use it to begin is not important, if this is the style you desire - go all mountain.

    However, you may want to look at the used market. You can pick up a 2006 enduro, 08 riegn, etc... with better components for the price your looking at. Used has some risk, but if you are patient and carefull, it can lead to a sweet deal on a good bike with high end components.

    Good luck, listen to others inputs, filter what makes sense, and throw out the rest. Make an informed buying decision - you will live with it for a while. Patience is a virtue.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by kneetowaist
    Looking into buying my first AM bike, pretty set on gt force 3.0 as performance has it and it fits my budget at around $1000. I weight 145lbs, 5'11". Previous bike was 1998 specialized HT. My riding consists of rooty/rocky rolling hills/flatish singletrack. I take the occasional trip to the NC mountains (pisgah). My biggest drops are 3-4 ft to flat(trail drops or loading docks). I will do the occasional 5ft high skinny with fairly vertical roll off @ the end. I can jump small(2ft not too far apart) doubles. I go about 23-25 mph on rooty/rocky terrain up in the mountains and will roll off fairly steep 12ft dirt dropoffs (not wheelie drop but roll off). I can throw small crossups off of tabletop jumps. Is this bike too capable or just right for what I'm doing? Should I go the XC full suspension route instead based on my riding style? Gt makes a gnarlier bike (the sanction) which seems to b too beefy/big hit for me and a less gnarly bike (the sensor). Thanks for your input! Want to make sure I'll use the bike to its full capacity and not be "overgunned".
    Haven't ridden the Force but have the '10 Sanction 1 from Performance. The Sanction's more burly but its not exactly a lift-assist DH 45 LBer either (I think it weighs in at around 34 LBs. It'll do most singletrack climbs reasonably well unless there's ridiculous amounts off rock, logs, etc. in switchbacks on the way up. Anything with decent flow, it'll handle fine climbing. My local trails and longer drive destinations are almost identical to yours but up in PA. I can tell you that there have been times on almost every more techy AM ride that I've been glad to have that extra burliness though, especially when big hits sneak up on you on DHs you're not real familiar with. I love that Talas 36 RC2 fork/DHX 5 shock combo. I did switch to CK hubs and DT Swiss FR600 rims which ride pretty sweet too.

    I was 210 lbs when I bought it in July and I'm now 175ish - I like how solid the Sanction is in the drops. To answer your question, at 145 LBs you're probably fine with the Force. Knowing what you ride, I wouldn't go with the Sensor though. You might easliy get into a situation where you're bringing a pellet gun to an elephant hunt, to use your overgunned/outgunned analogy. Good luck!

  5. #5
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    Thanks for all the inputs! My main concern was that I felt like I would need to be doing wheelie drops to flat over 4ft (which I won't do)to justify the gt force.(plse note that the 12ft drops I mentioned were steep rolling drops not wheelies). It seems like every other post I hear people talking about launching their AM bikes off of 6ft plus drops to flat! Is that the reality of AM? Sounds like freeride to me. Man, I'm not ready for all that...don't plan on it either! I feel better about the gt force now and think that might be it. Thanks for the advice above about used bikes btw(and filtering the bad advice , very true), but at this price I can get a solid frame and wheels and then upgrade the fork maybe? Wouldn't mind hearing some more on my riding style and if that fits AM and the prospective gt force. Thanks again!

  6. #6
    mtbr member
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    the force isnt very aggressive. sounds like you might even be outriding it as-is.

  7. #7
    think
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    Shrug it off if you want, but I wasn't kidding.

    If you are riding the bike as hard as you say you are you should be on a light freeride/big all mountain ride. Rune, new Blindside, ReignX, whatever. The Sanction is a glorified trail bike with some extra travel. GT sells that short travel freeride rig too, if you are set on their products maybe that is the ticket.

  8. #8
    BMW 2002, Dodge A100, etc
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    You sound all mountain to me! Need a bike that can ride XC but hold up under DH strain. Giant Reign or Trek Anthem... That Gt force looks like a nice bike too. Might want to ride a few bikes before you buy. You'll probably 'know' what you want after a trail test.

  9. #9
    usually cranky
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    whats a trek anthem? do you mean remedy?

  10. #10
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    Thanks badnews. I ewas thinking drops of 3-4 ft to flat were not AM enough but from what I've read it seems like they are.
    That combined with the type of flow I seek on rough singletrack and my lack of interest in being the fastest up the mountain (and training all the time for that matter makes me think I'm in the AM category. Given my 145 lbs weight and the killer deal at performance I think I'm gonna go with the force 3.0 and upgrade that suntour fork to a revelation or fox later. Looked at used options but they were all pretty beat up at higher cost than that new bike (the force retails for $1600 but is on sale for under $1000 so a killer deal.
    Thanks to everyone for the great insights. Look forward to interacting with you all and will post some pics/video of my new AM bike in action oce I get around to it!

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