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  1. #1
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    Looking for a new MTB, would like some suggestions based on info below

    Looking for new bike purchase advice. Currently I have an old Trek 980 set up as a commuter (rarely use), a Nashbar Cyclocross bike that's a couple years old, and a 1998 Klein Mantra Race, which is my trail bike. The Manitou SXR fork is barely working and while I was thinking of trying to obtain a new fork and turn it into a 69er, I feel I'm better off putting that money towards a new mountain bike.

    The important stuff:
    1. I'm ~165lbs, 5'10" with a 32" inseam
    2. I ride for pleasure and exercise, with a rare competitive event sprinkled in (in which I do not expect to take any metals)
    3. I want to stay with FS cause I'm old, high-frequency vibrations bother my joints
    4. Most trails that I ride are technical with short elevation change sections
    5. Must be reliable
    6. I will not pay retail - sorry, but retail prices of what I consider decent bikes are out of control and disproportionate when compared to a motorcycle or car in terms of R&D, labor, materials, etc. on the other hand I know I'm mostly at the mercy of S&D (do not want to get into a discussion about this here)


    Less important / preferences:
    1. <30lbs bike weight
    2. Ability to run fatter tires (2.6 - 2.8) for sandy / loose trails
    3. I feel most comfortable on 27.5" wheels
    4. Tubeless (ready)
    5. I like going uphill
    6. Still capable enough in terms of descent to take on the more popular Moab trails. My Mantra was a suicide machine out there with the steep headtube angle
    7. I do not need the latest, I'd rather buy last year's model if it means I'll getting the best bang/buck
    8. I do not care about brand... as long it's reliable
    9. I'm not in a rush to buy, but it would be nice if I could get something in the next couple of months. I still have my student ID (potential discount?)


    I wish I could demo a bunch of bikes on my favorite trail but the opportunities are limited in SE MI. LBS's charge up to $60/day for a demo and again, sorry, but I rented a small SUV last weekend for $25 for 2 days. I'm also not keen on financially locking myself in to a particular shop/selection. Looking for demo days with potential options has been a needle in a haystack scenario. I've also been keeping an eye on the classifieds but haven't come across anything interesting that I might like.

    I was thinking I might be able to go with a 27.5+ hardtail but I rode one around a LBS yesterday, and although I'd still like to try one on a trail, I'm pretty confident I will be sticking with a FS option. I also had a chance to try:

    • CF Specialized EPIC FSR - out of my price range; didn't feel worth the premium over other bikes
    • Al Specialized Camber 650b - Liked that it looks like it could take a 2.5" tire but it only felt OK and came with a pretty low-end Suntour fork... perhaps a higher-spec'ed version might be an option
    • Giant Anthem - retail is more than I want to pay (>$2.5k) but it felt great. Unfortunately it looks like tire clearance is very limited and I wouldn't be able to go wider than the stock 2.25" (?). Supposed to be deals on remaining inventory Giants around the Oct time-frame.


    What other bikes should I be considering and is there anything in particular that I should be looking for or avoiding (I haven't shopped for a MTB in a long time). I'm targeting between $1.5 and 2.5k but the cheaper the better; it's ~95% rider anyway. In terms of bang-for-the buck and reviews a Bossnut variant from Go Outdoors UK seems like the best workable option at this point - however I'm hesitant to order from overseas a bike that I can't try and I'm sure if I run into any issues it will become a big headache and expensive to deal with.

    List of other bikes to try (if I can find them):
    Commencal Meta TR (weight? max tire size?)

    Thank you!

  2. #2
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    Sounds like you are kinda stuck between a rock and a hard place. The only real way you are going to be able to see if you truly like a bike is biting the bullet and doing the demo program thing. Do you have any other shops around you that you could test bikes out at? really comes does to your personal preference.

    Things to look at
    - Commencal Meta 4.2
    - YT Jeffsy (29 or 27.5)
    - Transition Patrol and Smuggler
    - Guerrilla Gravity MegaTrail and Trail Pistol
    - Trek Fuel EX
    - Trek Remedy
    - Giant Trance and Stance
    - Felt Edict
    - Whyte T130 and T129
    - Nukeproof Mega 27.5 or 29

    The list can go on and on but really comes down to a couple factors;
    - you traveling to test something,
    - you traveling to purchase something,
    - you biting the bullet and purchasing online, or
    - you biting the bullet to do a full demo and locking into a shop...

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by gregnash View Post
    Sounds like you are kinda stuck between a rock and a hard place. ...
    Trek, Specialized, and Giant are the only brands that I've seen stock in the local LBSs but there are a couple more that I plan to hit next week. I think there's a LBS about an hour out that also carries Scott so I plan to hit them on Monday.

    I wish I could try some of these others that you suggested because I also don't care to have the same bike that everyone else is riding around here either.

    Another idea that I thought of today is to go to Windsor, Canada and see what they have... but I'm not sure how much I can spend in Canada without potentially having to pay duty.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Omegaman007 View Post
    Trek, Specialized, and Giant are the only brands that I've seen stock in the local LBSs but there are a couple more that I plan to hit next week. I think there's a LBS about an hour out that also carries Scott so I plan to hit them on Monday.

    I wish I could try some of these others that you suggested because I also don't care to have the same bike that everyone else is riding around here either.

    Another idea that I thought of today is to go to Windsor, Canada and see what they have... but I'm not sure how much I can spend in Canada without potentially having to pay duty.
    You could always ride the snot out of it and bring it back dirty and lie to customs it''s not new.

    Canadian dollar is hurting, so this may be a good option for you.

  5. #5
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    My suggestion is that you sound like a good candidate for a used bike. The only rub there is it's likely to be hard to find something that's plus compatible in the used market. While I understand your feelings about paying retail, there is something to be said for the warranty that a new purchase offers. For instance, Giant offers a lifetime warranty. When I bought my Giant, because of my relationship with my LBS I got ~$250 off SRP on the bike. After having the frame warrantied twice at zero cost to me, I figure I've got about $200 left in the bike, in terms of what I paid for it vs what the warranty has given me. So that's something to think about.

  6. #6
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    That rental fee you hesitate to pay was well worth it for my wife and I. For Trek it was $100 off the bike and an eye opener to the extent that I loved their shock and 29r more than expected. It was 2016 model year bikes but an official demo or renting at a demo center got you that coupon.

    The plus tires I've been able to try do not have great edges so they're super in some scenarios and not others.

    The market is full of great bikes so you can't go too wrong but delayed gratification worked well for us. Trying other bikes didn't have to be official demos. Join your local IMBA chapter or MTB clubs for events and I bet you can try other bikes.

    Have fun shopping.
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  7. #7
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    Thanks for the replies. I did some preliminary price checks and looks like Canadian prices have mostly been adjusted, and then you have to add the 12% tax unless buying from BC. It looks like the whole pricing model has changed as now manufacturer's seem to be setting the prices... a LOT of the Canadian store websites just take you to the bike company's web page. Been keeping an eye out in the pinkbike classified for used options but haven't seen anything that's an option due to cost, distance, etc.

    I think I need to keep myself from getting too excited and try a few more bikes before I commit.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Omegaman007 View Post
    Thanks for the replies. I did some preliminary price checks and looks like Canadian prices have mostly been adjusted, and then you have to add the 12% tax unless buying from BC. It looks like the whole pricing model has changed as now manufacturer's seem to be setting the prices... a LOT of the Canadian store websites just take you to the bike company's web page. Been keeping an eye out in the pinkbike classified for used options but haven't seen anything that's an option due to cost, distance, etc.

    I think I need to keep myself from getting too excited and try a few more bikes before I commit.
    Here's an interesting build of a Canadian Bike from Jenson USA that might work for you.

    Banshee Rune XT Jenson Bike 2016 > Bikes > Mountain Bikes | Jenson USA
    "Thank you, God, for letting me have another day"
    The Milagro Beanfield War

  9. #9
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    Man I'm in the same boat, kinda. Ive been out of MB-ing for 5 years and want to get back in. I can buy a FS but not sure being kinda new again I want to. I was thinking of the Specialized Rockhopper Sport. I do like hydraulic disc brakes. Yes getting deep into the hobby Suntour is a lower model fork but it still absorbs bumps...

    I see a full carbon Specialized Epic FR FS on CL with some nice upgrades for 1k.

    Giant, Trek, others offer better entry levels?

    Don't mean to hijack just gleaning your info \

    I am athletic, 195, can ride fast and aggressive...

  10. #10
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    Buy a Commencal because... feck it!

    I have two Commencal bikes, an old hard-tail and a Meta full-sus, and there is something very satisfying about them. The geometry feels very right somehow, the hard-tail is my all-time favourite bike, and they are very capable bikes. Commencal are based pretty much in the middle of a mountain range so they design bikes that can deal with anything. My Meta is a monster truck.

    They are good value as they are now sold direct. They've decided not to play the corporate game as they couldn't get a fair chance in bike shops as the big boys had too tight a grip on the shop floor. This also makes them a relatively rare sight, they'll be even less common in the US, strong pedigree too, overall just darn cool bikes to have. Different enough to be interesting without being one of the out-there brands that are just weird.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Pig View Post
    Buy a Commencal because... feck it!

    I have two Commencal bikes, an old hard-tail and a Meta full-sus, and there is something very satisfying about them. The geometry feels very right somehow, the hard-tail is my all-time favourite bike, and they are very capable bikes. Commencal are based pretty much in the middle of a mountain range so they design bikes that can deal with anything. My Meta is a monster truck.

    They are good value as they are now sold direct. They've decided not to play the corporate game as they couldn't get a fair chance in bike shops as the big boys had too tight a grip on the shop floor. This also makes them a relatively rare sight, they'll be even less common in the US, strong pedigree too, overall just darn cool bikes to have. Different enough to be interesting without being one of the out-there brands that are just weird.
    Neverhearofem

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jlpowell84 View Post
    Neverhearofem
    Anyone who follows down-hill/free-ride has.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by hikerdave View Post
    Here's an interesting build of a Canadian Bike from Jenson USA that might work for you.

    Banshee Rune XT Jenson Bike 2016 > Bikes > Mountain Bikes | Jenson USA
    Sweet bike, but about 50% more than I've been budgeting for... also probably "overbiked" for the rolling hills that I will be riding most of the time.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jlpowell84 View Post
    Giant, Trek, others offer better entry levels?

    Don't mean to hijack just gleaning your info \

    I am athletic, 195, can ride fast and aggressive...
    I've decided that I'm sticking with full-suspension for sure. Trek, Specialized, and Giant are by far the most accessible; they're in practically every LBS that I've walked into. Good luck!

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Pig View Post
    Buy a Commencal because... feck it!

    I have two Commencal bikes, an old hard-tail and a Meta full-sus, and there is something very satisfying about them. The geometry feels very right somehow, the hard-tail is my all-time favourite bike, and they are very capable bikes. Commencal are based pretty much in the middle of a mountain range so they design bikes that can deal with anything. My Meta is a monster truck.

    They are good value as they are now sold direct. They've decided not to play the corporate game as they couldn't get a fair chance in bike shops as the big boys had too tight a grip on the shop floor. This also makes them a relatively rare sight, they'll be even less common in the US, strong pedigree too, overall just darn cool bikes to have. Different enough to be interesting without being one of the out-there brands that are just weird.
    Mr. Pig,
    The Trail VR4.2 is my top candidate right now. I love how clean it looks and it checks off most of my wants/needs + they have won some "bike of the year" awards so I doubt it's a dud. I'm hesitating pulling the trigger for it on 4 accounts:

    1. I'm bummed that it doesn't seem to be able to handle a tire wider than 2.25". I was hoping to be able to fit something along the lines of 2.4-2.5" for some of sandy trails.
    2. Doesn't come with a drop post like many others in this price range and they do not offer that as an upgrade options. I heard that these are pretty expensive although in all likelyhood I'm not sure I really need one. The "origin" is the only version of the Trail on their US website and I'm not sure if they plan to sell any other models since when I asked the question via email....
    3. they didn't reply to my email. They still deserve a few more days so this is only a tentative concern.
    4. Most importantly.. I can't test ride it... even around a shop and I'm not sure how their return policy works (I still have to research that aspect although I covered that in my email also)

    After looking at a few different bikes recently I also want to add these specs to my wants list:
    * 1 by drivetrain. I like how clean that looks and removes complexity and weight(maybe).
    * "Boost" axle spacing. Not that I think I need that or it will perform better but just for future proofing.

    The Commencal has both of these I that's good.

  14. #14
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    Commies are the shit, almost bought one. Ultimately I bought a new Megatrail though, couldn't be happier.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by TugboatComplex View Post
    Commies are the shit, almost bought one. Ultimately I bought a new Megatrail though, couldn't be happier.
    Do you have a link? How much was it?

    Hmm, so I'm just looking at the Commencal site again and the AM version comes with 2.4" tire on the front... but in the spec it says that 57mm is max... so I don't know what the real max size us until they email me back or someone who has one posts.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Omegaman007 View Post
    Do you have a link? How much was it?

    Hmm, so I'm just looking at the Commencal site again and the AM version comes with 2.4" tire on the front... but in the spec it says that 57mm is max... so I don't know what the real max size us until they email me back or someone who has one posts.
    Here is the link for the GG MegaTrail, definitely a sick bike along with the TrailPistol.

    As for the dropper post, yes they CAN be expensive but more than likely it will be a part, similar to good hubs, that will transfer from bike to bike to bike so the money is well worth it.

    Check the vendor/brand forums and see what people are able to run in the rear for the Commie, you might be surprised as a lot of brands undercut size to allow for some room, also lots of tire brands are not true to size (e.g recent Vittoria Mezcal III G+ 2.35 measured out at 2.2" on a 29 internal width rim).

    Boost is something that will pretty much ensure that you are able to run a larger width tire but is not an absolute necessity. I would rather have a 27.5+ bike that could run smaller 29er tires AND 27.5+ tires than have something that is specific to boost and only one tire size. That is just me though.

    1x drivetrain should not be a deal breaker as it is an easy changeover from 2x or 3x. If you are looking at specific 1x drivetrains then I would look for an 11spd only (1x11) and then ensure that the cassette has a decent sized granny (42t in the rear).

  17. #17
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    Commencal got back to me but even though I had my questions nicely numbered they ignored all but the one about sizing. LOL. Regardless they are out of the M AND L TR for 6 - 8 weeks. I'm wondering if should order the AM which is a $100 more but has better rear tire, larger brake, and more travel even though I ride mostly trails and not mountains. It also doesn't come in the cool metallic looking red color that I much prefer over the yellow. They have a red version with a Lyrik fork but it's $2,600 which puts me within the price range of lighter bikes and other options. Also, doesn't seem to be worth $400 more for just an upgrade from the Yari to Lyrik (I think).

    I'm assuming I could reduce the fork travel with spacers if needed but not sure about the rear shock. Also, it weights a bit more so I might end up feeling that in the legs on long rides. I weighed my Klein last night and it's only 26.8lbs with a bunch of mud on it so this would be a ~5 pound penalty.

  18. #18
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    What size of tyre fits on the front of the bike is down to the fork, not the bike. I run 2.3 tyres. Most forks will take 2.4 or even 2.5 comfortably.

    Not being able to test ride it does seem like a huge issue but in reality most test rides tell you little anyway. You usually just ride the bike around the carpark for a few minutes. I once bought a steel hardtail that I thought felt great on the short test ride, hated that bike! Just felt wrong. Uncomfortable, slow and felt like you were perched on top of the bike rather than 'in' it.

    The Meta is kinda the opposite. Every time I get on it I think it feels a bit odd compared to my other bikes but once you're motoring it clicks into place. It's the V3 I have by the way, not the V4.

    I almost bought an SX but figured it would be too much bike so bought the SL. They don't do the SL any more but it was what the called the XC/Trail bike and it's ideal.

  19. #19
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    Well I was just looking at their website again and noticed that there are some geometry differences between the TR and AM. For me they seem like they might be better on the AM if I'm reading them properly because on my previous medium bikes I've always had to swap to a shorter stem. I guess I have shorter than average arms or torso.

    Anyway I'm still pondering if the AM could be made to work on mostly trails or if I'd be taking too much of a penalty with the increased weight and different geometry vs the TR, which is already over 30 pounds. It's going to suck having to wait 6 to 8 weeks though....

  20. #20
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    The review that I read on the Commencal Meta AM suggests that it's very much a downhill bruiser and might not be the most fun bike for everyday trail use.
    Riding Washington State singletrack since 1986

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Pig View Post
    What size of tyre fits on the front of the bike is down to the fork, not the bike. I run 2.3 tyres. Most forks will take 2.4 or even 2.5 comfortably.
    Right, but the rear will be dependent on the frame.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Pig View Post
    Not being able to test ride it does seem like a huge issue but in reality most test rides tell you little anyway. You usually just ride the bike around the carpark for a few minutes.
    Yes, being able to take it out and ride it at the local/familiar trail would be ideal.

    I looked at Commencal's French/German/England store websites but the bike + shipping from there is a few hundred dollars more so not worth it. I'm kicking myself for not looking into this a month ago when I was in Seattle, I could have made a trip across the border into BC and probably found some good deals for sure.

    I was looking at the Whyte T130S.... it's very similar to the TR but for some reason costs $700 more with the only advantage being a drop post and the GX components which do not add up to the price difference. They also have Yari RL listed along with the RC so I'm not sure which fork it actually comes with.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Omegaman007 View Post
    I was looking at the Whyte T130S.... it's very similar to the TR but for some reason costs $700 more ...
    Commencal only sell bikes direct now so they are a bit cheaper than bikes that are sold on shops. I reckon before long other manufacturers will copy them.

    They make cross-country, trail, free-ride and down-hill bikes with the geometry getting progressively more aggressive so yes, the AM (All-Mountain) will be less well suited to tamer trails than the TR (Trail).

    In terms of sizing, I don't know what the V4 is like but the V3 and the hard-tail I have I would describe as 'short' for their size. I always pick a medium, I'm about 5'9'', but my medium V3 is on the short side I'd say. I put a shorter stem on it, as I prefer the handling that way, but I think the shorter stem on a large frame would've been a better fit. It's fine, I like the bike as it is, but I think a large would've been better.

    The V4 TR already has a 50mm stem though, my V3 came with a 70mm one, so maybe they've lengthened the top tube?

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    Been reading some more reviews and they support your suggestion that AM is not well suited for trail riding... so I'll either wait for the TR to be available again or will purchase something else. I would like to check out some of the Scott bikes as they have excellent reviews but of the LBS that are listed on Scott's website as dealers, none of them have a Scott in stock. It appears Scott forces you to buy one of their bikes from an authorized local dealer which is a bummer.

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    The trance 2 is a great price point

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    The Commencal Trail is a great bike and even better at the price spec they list. But it does suck they are oos on most for a while. You can check out chainreactioncycles.com since they carry Commencal as well and if they have in stock they will ship asap.
    The Whyte bikes are awesome value as well, I have a 2016 G-160 RS. They are a bit pricier than some other online places like YT or Commencal, but the US website usually has sales and you can always try to talk to the guys running it and see if they can give you a better deal or hook you up with something else. Their spec even on their lower price bikes is usually better than most other specs though to be honest. A dropper is easily a 250 upgrade if you don't have one. About the same for just a step up in drivetrain components as well. Also they have the 30 day money back guarantee that they definitely honor.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MudderNutter View Post
    The trance 2 is a great price point
    I've been heavily considering the Trance 2...seems like a lot of people have positive things to say. Comes with good components for the money as well.

    So many decisions...

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by lucythefin View Post
    The Commencal Trail is a great bike and even better at the price spec they list. But it does suck they are oos on most for a while. You can check out chainreactioncycles.com since they carry Commencal as well and if they have in stock they will ship asap.
    The Whyte bikes are awesome value as well, I have a 2016 G-160 RS. They are a bit pricier than some other online places like YT or Commencal, but the US website usually has sales and you can always try to talk to the guys running it and see if they can give you a better deal or hook you up with something else. Their spec even on their lower price bikes is usually better than most other specs though to be honest. A dropper is easily a 250 upgrade if you don't have one. About the same for just a step up in drivetrain components as well. Also they have the 30 day money back guarantee that they definitely honor.
    Some good info/advice here.. really the age of internet bike purchasing is starting to come around more as these companies are making names for themselves AND allowing the customer 30-days to "try" the bike and if they dont like it then send it back. Canyon bikes coming to the US is another good example of a direct to customer sales methodology. The Canyon Strive has won plenty of awards and is a bike that I am personally looking forward to trying at one point or another. However, I do believe in supporting your local shops if you can. Should you decide to purchase a different brand and have some upgrades that you want to do to the bike then take it to them and have them purchase the items for you.

    The Trance is a good bike, however I guess they come in two different suspension types, the Flex Point and the Maestro. Pay the extra money for the Maestro suspension design as the Flex Point has had some issues in the past apparently. You will end up getting more bang for your buck by doing the direct sales but again, you can't ride the bike to see if it fits you well.

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by gregnash View Post

    The Trance is a good bike, however I guess they come in two different suspension types, the Flex Point and the Maestro. Pay the extra money for the Maestro suspension design as the Flex Point has had some issues in the past apparently. You will end up getting more bang for your buck by doing the direct sales but again, you can't ride the bike to see if it fits you well.
    To be clear, all Trances have Maestro suspension, flex point belongs to a lower level model called the Stance, which is also shorter travel.

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cotharyus View Post
    To be clear, all Trances have Maestro suspension, flex point belongs to a lower level model called the Stance, which is also shorter travel.
    Ah ok... I always get the two mixed up... Thanks for the clarification.

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    I tried a Stance (flex point) and an Anthem (Maestro) around a LBS parking lot. I preferred the latter but I've read about bolts getting lose on that one also. I've been driving some longer distances in hopes of being able to kick the tires on a Scott 745 and 720+ but none of the Scott "dealers" in the area actually had any Scott mountainbikes in stock. There's one more LBS left (furthest one out) that I might hit tomorrow IF they actually have one of these bikes in stock.

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    Are you talking about the Genius or the Spark? Buddy has last generation (2015) Genius 710 and I have pedaled around on it a few times and them my BIL has the Spark 720. Both are great bikes and decent component build for the price, not great but pretty good.

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by gregnash View Post
    Are you talking about the Genius or the Spark? Buddy has last generation (2015) Genius 710 and I have pedaled around on it a few times and them my BIL has the Spark 720. Both are great bikes and decent component build for the price, not great but pretty good.
    The Spark, however my inquiry ended when I was informed that Scott is sold out of those models for the year. Bikes must be getting popular or they're limiting the number that they make I guess.

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    Someone else mentioned the Jeffsy 27. I think it's worth looking into.

    They don't do 'plus' - they have plenty of room for 2.4" tires on wide rims - but otherwise it fits your bill.

    They're mail order only, so they can be had for a substantial discount compared to other bikes with the same spec. They're a good deal in America, and a screaming deal in Europe.

    I have the Jeffsy 29, and I LOVE it. It's a super fun bike. I ride similar trails to you (Stockholm), not very much up and down but some really technical stuff, and it's fun. It's also fun to open up and fly on swoopy single track. Very poppy.

    I'm late 40's and a Clydesdale, so I have similar health and comfort issues. It's the most fun I've had on a mountain bike. The geometry is the best I've ever used.

    The only flaw with the bike is the Pressfit 92 bottom bracket, which tends to creak, but I solved that with a bottom bracket and crank swap (to BBBInfinite + SRAM). Even with that swap, I saved at least $1.5k over the equivalently spec'd Specialized or Giant.
    Yamaguchi Cross • YT Jeffsy • Salsa Mukluk & Vaya • Canyon Commuter

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    Quote Originally Posted by Omegaman007 View Post
    The Spark, however my inquiry ended when I was informed that Scott is sold out of those models for the year. Bikes must be getting popular or they're limiting the number that they make I guess.
    Yeah I have a contact at SCOTT that told me the same recently... With Nino winning lots last year on the Spark and especially the Olympics on the new version they have been flying off the shelves as the premiere XC/Trail bike.. From what I am told, you are correct on both measures, it is a little of both as they originally weren't sure how well it would sell (some people just dont like the the shock up and down vs. horizontal).

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by schnee View Post
    Someone else mentioned the Jeffsy 27. I think it's worth looking into.

    They don't do 'plus' - they have plenty of room for 2.4" tires on wide rims - but otherwise it fits your bill.

    They're mail order only, so they can be had for a substantial discount compared to other bikes with the same spec. They're a good deal in America, and a screaming deal in Europe.

    I have the Jeffsy 29, and I LOVE it. It's a super fun bike. I ride similar trails to you (Stockholm), not very much up and down but some really technical stuff, and it's fun. It's also fun to open up and fly on swoopy single track. Very poppy.

    I'm late 40's and a Clydesdale, so I have similar health and comfort issues. It's the most fun I've had on a mountain bike. The geometry is the best I've ever used.

    The only flaw with the bike is the Pressfit 92 bottom bracket, which tends to creak, but I solved that with a bottom bracket and crank swap (to BBBInfinite + SRAM). Even with that swap, I saved at least $1.5k over the equivalently spec'd Specialized or Giant.
    Only problem is that the 27 Jeffsy is not slated to be released until next month (I think)? And then it is only the original pre-orders. I am anticipating that it will be LATE fall before you are readily able to purchase on with the success of the 29er Jeffsy and all their bikes.

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    The Jeffsy Al1, which is $3k, is supposed to be available on July 5th, while the $2.6k Al2 availability is way back on September 6th.

    A twist on this is that I figured out a way to get a Commencal TR v4.2 Origin, but I would be paying about $231 more than I would if they had them in stock in the US store. To complicate this further, the difference at this new price point makes the upgrades to the "Essential" version now worth it, BUT it's still a 1.5 month wait until they get them in the US store.

    Even with this tax all-up-costs for the "Origin" are still less than for the Whyte T130S, and to my eyes the Commencal looks quite a bit better. For the record Whyte never emailed me back, while Commencal has responded to both my emails, albeit it took them a few days to do so. I also spoke with them on the phone to make sure that they were truly OOS.

    What to do, what to do.

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    All really comes down to how quickly you want a new bike then I guess.
    The other one that has been getting some good reviews lately that I did not put on my list was the Norco Sight and Range. Range is definitely a much more "enduro" machine where the Sight is the "TRAIL" bike. We recently had a shop open up not to far away that is a Norco shop and I am partially thinking about going and trying the Sight for ishts and giggles. But I know myself and if I do that then I will want to build one up, not big on purchasing a full bike as there are certain components that I would rather have installed that I picked vs. purchasing a full bike then selling off parts. But that is definitely a more expensive route to go.

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    I dont think Trance/Anthem can fit anything wider then 2.4 tire. The Santacruz has a Tallboy that might fit the bill and has reasonably priced builds.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gregnash View Post
    All really comes down to how quickly you want a new bike then I guess.
    Truth. Half of me thinks it would be crazy to let over a quarter-grand go cause I can't wait but on the other hand it's still a good deal for the specs. I think I just need to remain calm, wait this out, and stop gawking at that sweet looking bike on the Commencal website. Maybe I'll try giving them a call on Monday to see if they have any leeway on the price.

    Quote Originally Posted by gregnash View Post
    The other one that has been getting some good reviews lately that I did not put on my list was the Norco Sight and Range. Range is definitely a much more "enduro" machine where the Sight is the "TRAIL" bike.
    I stopped by a shop that advertised that they sell Norco but they only had the very low end stuff. The owner said he just signed up to carry them just last month and he didn't plan on getting anything that I would be interested until the 18 model year (July/Aug). I will have to check out this Sight. I definitely do not need an enduro.... in fact a few other riders that I spoke with said that 140mm is too much travel for the trails around here, but I think it will be fun to bomb down some of the trails that I use brakes on right now.

    I also test rode another Specialized Epic FSR. This was the Comp version and the shock/fork was adjusted to my weight. With it setup correctly, I was impressed how well that brain shock worked. It felt strange though, like the rear tire had gone flat, whenever I hit something big with it. I also didn't care much for the longish stem and the 2x gearing, but that could be fixed for additional cash I suppose. Anyhow with those fixes it would be up to the price point of an V4.2 Essential with inferior (hierarchically speaking) components.[/QUOTE]

    Quote Originally Posted by axnels2 View Post
    I dont think Trance/Anthem can fit anything wider then 2.4 tire. The Santacruz has a Tallboy that might fit the bill and has reasonably priced builds.
    Will check out the Tallboy, for some reason I thought it was a largish travel bike though. After having looked at a few bikes in person now I think I'm going to have to chose between a plus sized bike or one with standard sized tires as i think I'm trying to jam too many requirements into this one bike. It would be interesting to try a FS plus bike but the only ones I've come across have been hardtails. During those trials I came to the conclusion that the rear fat tire is not a substitute for FS.

    On a side note, a few young riders complimented me on my Klein today. I really need to figure out how to turn that into a 69er for a reasonable price... but that's for another topic.

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by gregnash View Post
    Only problem is that the 27 Jeffsy is not slated to be released until next month (I think)? And then it is only the original pre-orders. I am anticipating that it will be LATE fall before you are readily able to purchase on with the success of the 29er Jeffsy and all their bikes.
    Oh, didn't know that. I'm in Europe, and they've been in stock here for months.
    Yamaguchi Cross • YT Jeffsy • Salsa Mukluk & Vaya • Canyon Commuter

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    Quote Originally Posted by Omegaman007 View Post
    Been reading some more reviews and they support your suggestion that AM is not well suited for trail riding... so I'll either wait for the TR to be available again or will purchase something else. I would like to check out some of the Scott bikes as they have excellent reviews but of the LBS that are listed on Scott's website as dealers, none of them have a Scott in stock. It appears Scott forces you to buy one of their bikes from an authorized local dealer which is a bummer.
    My Fuji Auric 1.7 is very suitable for trail riding. The equivalent model for this year, the Auric 3.7, will meet your requirement for an enjoyable but cost-effective bike. My daughter is 5' 10 and I'm 6'1" and the large size Auric fits both of us well after a change to a shorter stem.
    "Thank you, God, for letting me have another day"
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    So a quick update on this. I can get the TR V4.2 Origin with a dropper post for about $370 less than a TR V4.2 Essential. I'm not super familiar with the cost of all the other upgrades, but from my research it looks like there's around $475 street value in there (ignoring the dropper since I included that in the numbers already). Does that sound about right?

    I think I'm leaning toward waiting and blowing my budget on the Essential which should be available again next month. Coincidentally that's around the same time that the A1 Jeffsy will be available. Since I plan to be peddling a lot I think the Commencal might still be better option?

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    Can't seem to catch a break... I wish Commencal had "quantity available" info on their website because even though it's still more than 3 weeks out, they sold out of the medium TR Essential before I got my order in (I didn't want to tie up $3k for more than a couple of weeks). Looks like I'll either have to wait until the 2018 models come back into stock or go for another option. :/

  44. #44
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    Snag a nice Salsa El Mariachi used or maybe a Giant STP. If you like some stuff you have now you could always find a new Frame and build up something you like as a hobby project.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gregnash View Post
    All really comes down to how quickly you want a new bike then I guess.
    The other one that has been getting some good reviews lately that I did not put on my list was the Norco Sight and Range. Range is definitely a much more "enduro" machine where the Sight is the "TRAIL" bike. We recently had a shop open up not to far away that is a Norco shop and I am partially thinking about going and trying the Sight for ishts and giggles. But I know myself and if I do that then I will want to build one up, not big on purchasing a full bike as there are certain components that I would rather have installed that I picked vs. purchasing a full bike then selling off parts. But that is definitely a more expensive route to go.
    I recently tried a Sight carbon and it was a very impressive bike. Extremely efficient on the climbs, great in corners, and quite smooth on the descents. It felt very light and poppy, but also very capable on the drops.

    If the Guerilla Gravity Megatrail SS didn't fit me so perfectly, then I'd be getting a Sight.
    Riding Washington State singletrack since 1986

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    Quote Originally Posted by Omegaman007 View Post
    Can't seem to catch a break... I wish Commencal had "quantity available" info on their website because even though it's still more than 3 weeks out, they sold out of the medium TR Essential before I got my order in (I didn't want to tie up $3k for more than a couple of weeks). Looks like I'll either have to wait until the 2018 models come back into stock or go for another option. :/
    Did you ever pull the trigger on the TR 4.2? See mediums are back in stock now and was also looking into this bike. Also has anyone compared the specs from the 2017 vs. the 2018? Curious if I should wait until the 2018 is available.

  47. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by Omegaman007 View Post
    I tried a Stance (flex point) and an Anthem (Maestro) around a LBS parking lot. I preferred the latter but I've read about bolts getting lose on that one also. I've been driving some longer distances in hopes of being able to kick the tires on a Scott 745 and 720+ but none of the Scott "dealers" in the area actually had any Scott mountainbikes in stock. There's one more LBS left (furthest one out) that I might hit tomorrow IF they actually have one of these bikes in stock.
    I rode/raced an anthem in different states, 12 hour races, and an entire racing series and had no problems with bolts coming loose. Blue loctite is amazing. I never had to apply it, but it would fix that situation if it would occur on basically any bike.
    There is not much choice between rotten apples.

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    I actually ended up picking up a used Framed Alaskan fat tire bike off of craigslist as a hold-me-over. It's pretty fun to ride and allows me to get more exercise when I bike with slower riders since I have to accelerate heavy wheels and keep those 35 pounds moving. I think the 2018 TR essential is worth the extra $100 but I'm waiting to see if Canyon will post their pricing and bike selection next month before I pull the trigger.

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    Yeah I agree that the 2018 TR 4.2 looks to be the better bike but I am not extremely knowledgeable of components either. The Eagle 1x12 I think would justify the extra $100 alone though. Also comes with a nicer dropper post.

    To throw one other bike in the mix that I have been looking at is the Santa Cruz 5010 Aluminum S build. Saw a brand new one go on Ebay for $2880 the other day. Just missed out on it.

  50. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by dbeadle View Post
    Yeah I agree that the 2018 TR 4.2 looks to be the better bike but I am not extremely knowledgeable of components either. The Eagle 1x12 I think would justify the extra $100 alone though. Also comes with a nicer dropper post.

    To throw one other bike in the mix that I have been looking at is the Santa Cruz 5010 Aluminum S build. Saw a brand new one go on Ebay for $2880 the other day. Just missed out on it.
    Santa Cruz have some nice bikes. I agree that the extra $100 is worthwhile for the 2018 model. I didn't really see any chinks in the component set, at least to the best of my knowledge. Let me know what you end up getting.

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    Will do. Continuing to do my own research as well. Some other bikes I have on my short list for under $3k are:

    Trek Fuel Ex 9- would need to buy used but 2017 could be had for less than 3k
    Scott Genius 920 or 720- again probably would have to go used or look for them to go on sale
    Specialized Stumpjumper FSR Elite 29er- Again would need to go used

    So some higher end bikes but could get used 2017 models around your budget. I am not really sure about any of the bikes ability to throw on wider tires though.

    Which Canyon are you looking at? I have been interested in the Spectral but would have to go with a low end model to get under $3k.

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    Are you sold on 29 or 27.5? I don't know what to do about wheel size. I have pretty much only ridden 29ers accept on my downhill bike so I am not really sure how big a difference it would be. I thought more companies were switching to 29" but a lot of the companies still seem to only offer 27.5", especially when looking at Aluminum frames. I am 6 ft tall so in theory I would think 29er makes more sense.

  53. #53
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    new Tallboy. 27+ $2700 list. threaded bb, lifetime frame warranty, free pivot bearings for life, lots of positive reviews

    https://www.pinkbike.com/news/santa-...view-2017.html

    https://www.santacruzbicycles.com/en-US/tallboy

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    Quote Originally Posted by dbeadle View Post
    Will do. Continuing to do my own research as well. Some other bikes I have on my short list for under $3k are:

    Trek Fuel Ex 9- would need to buy used but 2017 could be had for less than 3k
    Scott Genius 920 or 720- again probably would have to go used or look for them to go on sale
    Specialized Stumpjumper FSR Elite 29er- Again would need to go used

    So some higher end bikes but could get used 2017 models around your budget. I am not really sure about any of the bikes ability to throw on wider tires though.

    Which Canyon are you looking at? I have been interested in the Spectral but would have to go with a low end model to get under $3k.
    Yeah, Spectral. I actually seem to prefer 27.5... 29 feels just a little big and unwieldy on the technical stuff to me when I rode my uncle's Fuel EX. If I see a good 29 option I'm not ruling it out though. I'm 178cm.

    I wanted to check out the Scotts but like I said in the earlier posts... I couldn't find them anywhere as they were sold out.

    It's been so nice since I got the fat bike, no longer do I feel pressure that I need to buy something soon. Now I'll bide my time and pull the trigger when the time is right.

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    So the Spectrals are available now. I was looking at the 8.0 EX which is +$600 over the Commencal TR but around 3lbs lighter. No boost spacing on the Spectral and it doesn't have the 12x Eagle set.

    How important is this boost standard? I think for the 2018's the Spectral will have it in the front since I read somewhere that RS will only be producing 2018 forks in boost. I'm hesitating because I don't want to buy into obsolete standard that might be tough to find replacements for in the future. OTOH perhaps the $600 saved would be better spent on a carbon wheel upgrade for the Commencal....

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