Taking the next step: upgrading
I have been passionately biking for the past 8 years on my Cannondale F5 hardtail. The bike has been amazing but the frame is getting small for me and I would like to upgrade to a fully. I love biking but I am not like most people I know are with their hobbies, I doesn't spend my free time looking at upgrades, parts etc. I don't think it's a bad thing to do that but it was never my thing.
So now that I finally am thinking about upgrading and I am at a complete loss on what to look for in a bike, what parts are good, and so on.
My budget is around 3000 Dollars. I do lots of technical riding (no clue if that is the right term but I mean with roots and rocks, you get my point) and uphill/downhill (near the alps), so I want to get a fully but not a downhill bike.
My questions are as follows:
What are the main things to look for in a bike?
I have heard the geometry of the frame often, but I have no clue what to look for in the frame shape.
What brands would you suggest? Is the brand a large factor?
I am in Germany, so maybe Cube? Radon? YT Industries was also suggested to me.
Second-hand or new? pros/cons?
I am often told I have to like the "feel" of the bike. How important is it to try the bike before I buy ?
I have mainly ridden my own bike so I do not know too much about differences between. Also, the bike I am looking is by Radon, a very small company that is located far from where I live. Is testing the bike very necessary?
I am looking into the following bike at the moment.
RADON Bikes Slide 150 E1
These are the specifications I am about looking at. I know the price is hefty but I want this to be "that bike" if you know what I mean ^^
Any help will be greatly appreciated
-Yodeler from Germany
That's a good looking bike. Seems to be built to handle anything.
It will most likely climb a little slower than your hard tail , due to weight.
I tried out three different bikes, from two different brands before I found one that felt right.
I don't believe that testing a bike is necessary, as long as the fit is correct, which may require testing for some. I'm really tall so I'm typically just stuck with an XL.
I have bought several bikes based on price and what the bike reviews claimed the bike was intended for-and how much that lined up with how I intended to ride the bike.
No matter what bike you get you'll learn how to ride it, the only issue is whether the bike fits the style you intend on riding it most.
As for Geometry you need to determine what the correct top tube length is, the easiest is measure what you currently have and decide if that's too short/long for you.
The new bikes in the All Mountain/Trail category have headtube angles in the 68 degree range plus a degree or so. The Radon you linked to has a 68.2 degree head tube. This is a good compromise between climbing ability and stability at high speeds. Overall the Radon looks like a great bike to me, really solid looking spec list. I would be surprised if you were unhappy with anything on the bike if you buy it.
Never heard of that Radon but it's pretty much exactly the "type" of bike I would recommend you look for. 4-6'' of travel, ~67-ish-68-ish degree head angle, 34mm minimum stanchion fork with a 15m or 20mm axle and something you could build between 27-31-ish lbs or so. Nice looking bike. There are many that fall into this category.
The only thing I can think of to consider might be frame weight. You mentioned the Alps. If you climb A LOT then it might be best if you look for a complete build closer to the 27lb range vs. the 32lb range. You'll just need to weigh the pro's vs. cons of the weight for your riding. A little more weight and travel sure is nice your a technical riding junky vs. a mountain goat.
I am seeing if I can organize a trip to Radon in Bonn sometime soon but if that does not work out, I think I will go for it. Thank you very much for all the feedback so far!
Also, I was wondering about the size of the frame. I have 6 ft 1in. and weigh around 200 pounds (absurdly large highs, dad's heritage to me). I did the frame size test with my stride length and leg length and it came out nearly perfectly for 20". Does this sounds about right? Weight doesn't matter apart in the purchase, only in the pressure of the shocks correct?
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