1. The most important thing about buying a new bike is to make sure it fits. The only way you'll know if the bike is right for you is to size up the bike and make sure that the bike's geometry matches your body's geometry. Ask questions and do some research.
mtn. biking 101
2. If possible, try to find a shop that will let you demo the bike on real dirt. Five minutes in a parking lot won't cut it. You wouldn't buy a car without a real world test drive, and a bike should be no different.
3. Don't belive the hype. Just because your favorite rider or best friend rides a certain bike, that doesn't mean that's the best one for you. Have an open mind and be realistic about your needs and ability.
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  1. #1
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    2012 Motobecane 600HT...thoughts for $360

    This bike would be for my wife. Lights trails for the most part. $360 seems like a great deal for this bike. Thoughts?


    Mountain Bikes - MTB - Motobecane 600HT

    Frame Custom 7005 Aluminum Trail-Tuned POWER STAY frame, box section chainstays, bi-axial gussetted downtube, sculpted rear dropouts with replaceable rear derailleur hanger, 2x H2O bosses, International Standard rear disc mounts Detailed Picture Gallery
    Fork RockShox Dart + Advanced, long travel, Adjustable Preload
    Crankset TruVativ 5D Aluminum arms 175mm, Triple Rings 22/32/42T
    Bottom Bracket Sealed Cartridge
    Pedals ATB Beartrap
    Front Derailleur Shimano Alivio Top Swing
    Rear Derailleur Shimano Deore LX long cage
    Shifters Shimano Alivio Mega 8 Speed STI Rapidfire Pods (24 speeds total)
    Cassette/Freewheel 12-28T 8 Speed PowerglideRamps
    Chain 8 Speed Z72 Narrow
    Hubs Formula DiscSpecific Aluminum (black) Sealed Bearing mechanism
    Spokes Stainless Steel
    Rims WTB SpeedDisc Rims Double Wall Aluminum
    Tires WTB Velociraptor Blackwall 26 x 2.10 (front and rear specific)
    Brakes TEKTRO IO Mechanical Disc Brakes with Multi Pad Angle adjustments
    Brake Levers Tektro for Disc
    Headset Cane Creek Internal Sealed caged ball bearing VP A42E 1.125 inch
    Handlebar Skye Comp Aluminum Riser
    Stem Skye Comp Threadless Aluminum 1.125 inch
    Tape/Grip WTB Dual Compound Palm Pillow
    Saddle WTB Speed V with comfort groove
    Seat Post Skye Aluminum Micro-Adjust
    Seat Clamp Alloy w/QR
    Sizes 13, 15, 17, 19, 21, 23 inch
    Colors MatteBlack

  2. #2
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    Hey there,

    I am a noob so My post may not have much weight, but from reading the specs, and seeing it is on sale, I would say that it would be way better than any DEPT. store bike.

    I just bought 2 from BD as well and they should be here this Tuesday. i will post comments and pix when i get them.

    I say go for it!

    Here is your bike your speaking of

  3. #3
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    +1 Go for it

    I don't think you can find another bike of this quality with those components for anywhere near that price.

    I was on a very limited budget and picked up the 500HT at that same price a few wks ago. Wish I would have waited for this sale. I'm happy with the 500 though. At the time, the 500HT was the best deal I could find new or used.

  4. #4
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    I'm just hesitant...my wife is 5'7''. Would the 17 inch frame with 26 inch wheels work for her for the most part? It says for people from 5'5'' to 5'8''. The stand over height is 29 inches and my wifes inseam was about 32. I'm thinking she would need bigger, but i'm a noob.

  5. #5
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    The 17" should work just fine. And yes, I agree that the 600HT is the best deal she will get at that price range. If you are concerned about sizing and the Moto is too small, you could pick up an 18" Nashbar or Sette frame for under $100, swap the parts, and sell the 600HT frame:

    Sette Reken Alloy Hardtail Frame at Price Point

    Nashbar Double-butted Aluminum Mountain Bike Frame - Mountain Bike Frames

    Also, I'm 5'7 and did order a 17" Windsor Cliff 4500 about a year ago. At first, it felt a little small, but after a few rides, it felt a lot better. I also just ordered a 17" Motobecane 600HT, knowing that the fit would be simlar, except the 600HT is going to fit a little differently, because of the longer travel of the forks.

    In short, I think you will be ok with the 17", but I would order soon, because they aren't going to last long!
    Last edited by getagrip; 04-14-2012 at 04:59 PM.

  6. #6
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    I just ordered this bike this morning. I had the 500ht booked marked too order
    but now ive got the money the size i need was sold out. So i am very happy
    the 600ht went on sale for the same price. As far as the bike goes from looking
    at the specs and componets i think its alot of bike for the price. I cant wait.

  7. #7
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    LX RD, Tektro discs and levers, RockShox Dart 2, TruVativ crank, free shipping, no tax. This is a heck of a deal for $360.

    Ian

  8. #8
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    damn man...I was busy all day and just got back now to order and its gone for the 17 inch. Oh well. I'm a noob so was a slighty doubtful and hesitated.

  9. #9
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    Bahahahah

  10. #10
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    Bummer, but you can get a pretty good Nashbar mountain bike for $399.00, as shown below:

    Nashbar AT-3 Mountain Bike - Mountain Bikes

    The specs are pretty close to the 600HT...really, not that much different. In some cases, you are getting a better known brand like a Shimano bottom bracket and a Ritchey headset. Also notice that it has 120mm of travel, which indicates it will be on the larger size for a 17":

    Nashbar AT-3 Mountain Bike

    FRAME: TIG-welded 6061 aluminum, disc mount and replaceable derailleur hanger
    FORK: Suntour suspension fork with 120mm travel, 1 1/8" threadless steerer, preload adjust and hydraulic speed lock-out
    REAR SHOCK: NA
    HEADSET: Ritchey 1 1/8" threadless
    CRANKSET: FSA Dynadrive 44X32X22T
    BOTTOM BRACKET: Shimano BB-UN26, sealed cartridge, square type
    SHIFTERS: Shimano Alivio
    LEVERS: Tektro 2-finger
    HANDLEBAR: Alloy 15mm rise
    STEM: Alloy 3D Forged, 17 degree rise
    FRONT DERAILLEUR: Shimano Alivio
    REAR DERAILLEUR: Shimano Deore
    CASSETTE: CS-HG30-9 9-Speed, 11-34T
    BRAKES: Tektro Novela mechanical disc
    WHEELSET: Rims: Alex TD-24 32-hole Doublewall Alloy; Hubs: Alloy Disc
    TIRES: Maxxis Mobster, 26x2.35 front, 26x2.1 rear
    PEDALS: Aluminum body, steel cage
    SEATPOST: Alloy, 27.2mm
    SADDLE: WTB Pure V-Sport
    CHAIN: KMC HG53
    GRIPS/TAPE: Velo

  11. #11
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    By the way, the Windsor Cliff 4700 is not bad for $399. However, I think the Nashbar bike gets the nod over the Windsor, but the Nashbar bike does not have free shipping. Having said that, I think it would be worth the extra money to pay for shipping for the Nashbar bike instead of the Windsor, because really, its pretty darn close to the 600HT.

    Anyway, here is the link to the Windsor so that you have another option to compare the Nashbar bike to:

    Save up to 60% off new Mountain Bikes - MTB - Windsor Cliff4700
    Last edited by getagrip; 04-14-2012 at 07:51 PM.

  12. #12
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    Getagrip,

    Appreciate the help. I'll look into the Windsor and Nashbar. The nashbar charges tax and shipping so its about 70 bucks more.

    I may also jump up to the Airborne Guardian which seems pretty decent.

  13. #13
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    If that works, go for it, but take a close look at the geometry of each bike, which Nashbar unfortunately doesn't have listed on their site, but I think you would be ok. I noticed that the Guardian is a 29er, and if that is the case, an 18" may be too big, because 29er sizing is quite different. Some people who switch to a 29er switch back to a 26er, as can be seen in this thread:

    Returned my 29er for a 26er

    Here is another one to consider that comes in a 17": the Schwinn Rocket Comp. Please note that the eBay listing is off on sizing, but its a nice bike - I have one! It does have kind of a high chasis because of the 5" travel in the fork, which might freak your wife out a little because its a long drop if you fall.

    Schwinn best full suspension red mountain bike sale | eBay

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mountain916 View Post
    damn man...I was busy all day and just got back now to order and its gone for the 17 inch. Oh well. I'm a noob so was a slighty doubtful and hesitated.
    I have a feeling that bike weighs around 33lb and the rear cassette is tiny (11-28t, seriously??). A 28t gear is way too small and would be torture on anything but bike paths. I would recommend finding a bike with a 32t or higher. The Nashbar bike that has been linked in another reply has a 11-34t rear cassette and a 9 speed drivetrain which would be much easier to ride.

    EDIT: Since the motobecane is roughly $100 less than the Nashbar bike after shipping is taken into account you could save some $ by doing one these,

    Option #1: change the rear cassette with a larger 8speed like this in either 11-32t or 11-34t for around $13-15.

    Option #2: you could convert it to a 9 speed with this this and this for roughly $65.
    Last edited by FireLikeIYA; 04-15-2012 at 07:59 AM.
    Killing it with close inspection.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by FireLikeIYA View Post
    I have a feeling that bike weighs around 33lb and the rear cassette is tiny (11-28t, seriously??). A 28t gear is way too small and would be torture on anything but bike paths. I would recommend finding a bike with a 32t or higher. The Nashbar bike that has been linked in another reply has a 11-34t rear cassette and a 9 speed drivetrain which would be much easier to ride.
    Yeah, it probably will be a little tougher to ride up hills, but a lot of that depends on where you live and what kind of terrrain you ride. A 28t in back forces you to ride in a higher gear and get stronger. My Schwinn FS has a rather stubburn front derailleur which makes it really a pain in the you know what to downshift shift from the 32t to the 22t. The result was that I stayed in the 32t because I was more or less forced to, but now I'm strong enough to stay in it on most rides I do. Of course, it wouldn't work so great on other courses...but don't forget, you can always buy a new cassette with lower gear ratios.

    That being said, I think the Nashbar is a great bike, so if the 600HT is sold out in your size, paying an extra $70 or so for the Nashbar is worth it.

    The shipping weight of the 600HT is listed at 30 pounds. In my experience, Bikes Direct bikes tend to be lighter than similar bike store bikes. And by the way, as of this morning, the 17" is still available...when I go to the site and do a test to add it to my cart, I have no problems.
    Last edited by getagrip; 04-15-2012 at 12:10 PM.

  16. #16
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    The spec on that bike isn't "all that." If your wife doesn't already know her fit numbers, and from the height/inseam post I'm guessing she doesn't, you're both better off if you can find something locally for your price.

    Call your local bike shops and see if anyone carries used or consignment bikes. Play It Again Sports and pawn shops can be another place to see several used bikes all at once, which is the goal here. Then your wife can ride a few different bikes and make a much more informed decision.

    Women sometimes articulate their backs from a little higher than men - really depends on how high her waist is. Women with shorter backs and higher waists are likely to want a frame with a shorter reach.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrwSwitch View Post
    The spec on that bike isn't "all that."
    For the price it is. Compare specs to a Trek 4300 at $789 with ACERA components:

    Trek Bicycle

    That said, Specialized seems to offer better deals on woman's specific bikes than Trek, but you pay a lot more for less bike. The Specialized Hardrock Disc sport goes for $630:

    Specialized Bicycle Components : Myka Sport Disc

  18. #18
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    Forgot to mention the Giant Women's Revel 1 - probably the best specs you will find locally on a women's specific bike selling for $500 or less:

    Revel 1 W (2012) - Bikes | Giant Bicycles | United States

  19. #19
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    Acera components work fine. I started my first racing season with them. Rode the Acera (or Alivio? can't remember which is which) crank until I wore out the middle ring. Rear derailleur until I fell on it. The only part that really didn't work very well for me was the front derailleur, and it's the same on the Moto. So, meh.

    I don't really want to argue about whether BD's bikes are any good. They do seem to hang better parts on them than major-brand bikes at the same price, although not as good as those at the price they claim as the MSRP. But for me, the big value of my bike is that I can ride it for many hours without it hurting me, and that's all about fit. It's worth riding a few bikes, and important to note that the nominal sizes don't compare across brands well. Incidentally, I'd need to size up once relative to most bike with traditional XC geometry to get the right top tube length in a 600HT. Annoying.

    I've bought my last three bikes used. Private sellers, so I had to have a good idea going in that they'd fit me, but for the two I cared about, I did, and they do. So, about the same on the fit issue as BD but I've done better on the spec for price. A track bike with the right geometry isn't even available from BD for less than $800, more than three times what I spent. It costs more to buy used at a used bike shop, but I think the opportunity to ride several bikes back-to-back is a real value-added for someone who doesn't already know her fit numbers/head tube angle/whatever else.

    I think the OP's going to have better luck getting his wife to ride with him if she has a sense of ownership over the bike. Even if it's used, buying locally gives her a chance to get a bike that really is for her. My fiancee's happier to ride her hybrid than one of my racing bikes, even if it's set up for her. Go figure.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrwSwitch View Post
    Acera components work fine. I started my first racing season with them. Rode the Acera (or Alivio? can't remember which is which) crank until I wore out the middle ring.

    I don't really want to argue about whether BD's bikes are any good. They do seem to hang better parts on them than major-brand bikes at the same price, although not as good as those at the price they claim as the MSRP. Incidentally, I'd need to size up once relative to most bike with traditional XC geometry to get the right top tube length in a 600HT. Annoying.

    I've bought my last three bikes used. Private sellers, so I had to have a good idea going in that they'd fit me, but for the two I cared about, I did, and they do. So, about the same on the fit issue as BD but I've done better on the spec for price.

    I think the OP's going to have better luck getting his wife to ride with him if she has a sense of ownership over the bike. Even if it's used, buying locally gives her a chance to get a bike that really is for her. My fiancee's happier to ride her hybrid than one of my racing bikes, even if it's set up for her. Go figure.
    My guess is that you were racing with Alivio. Acera components used to come stock on Trek 820s...now they've downgraded to Tourney.

    Yeah, you can sometimes find better value on used bikes than Bikes Direct bikes, but a lot of that depends on the area of the country in which you live, and usually, its not that easy. For instance, compare my local Craigslist (Omaha) with Seattle Washington's Craigslist. Seattle's selection and prices on bikes is TEN TIMES BETTER:

    omaha / council bluffs bicycles - all classifieds - craigslist

    seattle-tacoma bicycles - all classifieds - craigslist

    Yes, Bikes Direct top tubes seem to be a little shorter than some other manufactures like Specialized, but they are consistent with many of Trek's models. However, if you do end up getting a frame that does not fit right, it is not too hard to swap everything over to another frame, which can be done for about $100, and that's not taking into consideration that you can probably sell your Motobecane frame for $75 to $100, which you can use to purchase the tools needed for this and future bike repairs. I agree though, that their MSRPs are inflated, but let's face it, their components aren't only equal to bike store bikes at equal prices, they are flat out SUPERIOR.

    Anyway...if the OP is still reading this, I hope he gets the bike that will work best for his wife. For the rest of you still reading this, don't be afraid to purchase from Bikes Direct. Outside of a few isolated instances (which you can read about in this forum), for the most part, their customers seem VERY happy with their bikes!

  21. #21
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    Here's a good one. Don't tell your wife where you saw it, if you buy it.

    Cannondale Lefty hardtail, XTR, XT
    BikePedia - 2006 Cannondale F800 Complete Bicycle

    When I moved and started racing, I had this.
    Specialized Bicycle Components : Hardrock Comp Disc

    I'd already put "my" cockpit setup on it - so flat bars, bar ends, a racier saddle and the stem to tie it all together, and a fork I found on EBay for $75. Drivetrain's a mix of 300- and 400-level stuff, so pretty typical. I guess you got me on Alivio rear derailleur and shifters, though. The bike also had Panaracer Smoke and Dart tires, at the time, and some ten-year-old Time ATACs.

    Current iteration's on the bottom of this page.
    Post your $1000-2000 HardTail

    Nice long ride on it today with a friend. So that was nice. Happy Sunday, everybody.

    When I think about it, there are two things that spring to mind. First, if I hadn't been in such a rush, I could probably have done a lot better by buying used instead of retail. I'm not sure if BD was around at that point or not, but I do think I benefited from riding this size, 17", against the 19". Second, I'm glad that Specialized has seen fit to produce even their lowest-end mountain bike with pretty traditional XC geometry. When bad timing locked me into that bike when I did start having time to ride more and pick up racing again, it meant that I could stick with replacing what broke - I've never had to do a complete do-over, or move to a new frame. Since I like hardtails, it would't have been terribly difficult, but I still think it fits well in the category of "easier said than done, and has hidden costs." I killed a bike frame not too long ago, and ended up deciding that a new frame was not a feasible option for that, for example. I have a pejorative that I use when I think of the Trek 3- and 4-series geometry, but I'm a liberal and don't like to use it in print. Even pretend, internet print. So, I don't find a comparison between the 600HT and Trek to be particularly flattering. To either, really.

    When I got my 'cross bike in 2008, I was determined to "do it right." So I went to a few bike shops and rode a few different bikes at each, and a couple of sizes of the one I did buy. Again, I'm glad I did it, it got me onto the right size.

    I know you're stoked on your BD bikes. I think you might have as many bikes as I do now. For myself, I'm just as happy that I've spent more of my time and even taken a hit on some of the builds getting bikes built on frames I'm happy with. If they could all magically have nicer builds, I guess that'd be cool, but it's more important to me to be able to set them up for good fit and handling and for me, in the absence of a reference bike that starts with a test ride.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrwSwitch View Post
    Here's a good one. Don't tell your wife where you saw it, if you buy it.

    Cannondale Lefty hardtail, XTR, XT

    I killed a bike frame not too long ago, and ended up deciding that a new frame was not a feasible option for that, for example.

    I think you might have as many bikes as I do now. For myself, I'm just as happy that I've spent more of my time and even taken a hit on some of the builds getting bikes built on frames I'm happy with. If they could all magically have nicer builds, I guess that'd be cool, but it's more important to me to be able to set them up for good fit and handling and for me, in the absence of a reference bike that starts with a test ride.
    Kinda funny you had to look through a week's worth of Omaha Craigslist ads to find a good deal...the link you posted for the Cannondale is from April 9th.

    You can learn a lot from building a bike, but beware, if you are someone who is pre-disposed to early balding and grey hair, building a bike will accelerate that process!

    In my case, I learned a crap load about bikes by starting from scratch and rebuilding from a Trek 820 frame. Even though that project didn't turn out as well as I'd hoped, swapping everything over to a new Leader hardtail frame worked at nicely for me, so I HIGHLY encourage frame swaps for anyone who thinks their frame is too small or too big. In most cases, you can usually find a happy medium about which frame size to get by doing a little research online. In some cases, you will find that not all of the parts swap over, such as headsets or bottom brackets, but for the most part, its a fairly simple process.

    It would be nice to be able to test ride every bike you are thinking of buying, but when you consider the value you can get online, that's not always the best option. Let's face it, like it or hate it, we are in the age of the internet, and many happy customers have found exactly what they want online, in terms of both sizing and quality, without having to do a ride at a local bike store to find out. However, for some people, who either lack technical skills to tune bikes or who don't have a friend to tune their bike for them, buying online may not be the best option.

    Including the 600HT that is on the way here, I now have 4 bikes. But according to The Rules ( see Velominati The Rules ) , that's only 1 bike more than the MINUMUM number of bikes that one should own, but still 1 less than ideal...
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 2012 Motobecane 600HT...thoughts for 0-rules-12.jpg  


  23. #23
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    I took about a week and a half to find my track bike too. I just stuck a feed on my home page that kept track of a Craig's List search. I actually bumped into the ad when I opened a CL page to revise my price up - figured I'd do it in steps until I got to the start of track season. So, I don't think putting in some bracket prices and search terms made searching CL a particularly arduous exercise, and I do find mine to be full of crap too, if I don't do that.

    I hadn't read the 510H build thread before. Normally I find them kind of boring, but yours was an exception. If you're going to bring it up, you might include a link, so the poster knows how what you're suggesting turned out for you. I think goals and perspective are pretty important in how a person approaches buying bikes, and your threads really make both of our points better than I think our posts do.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  24. #24
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    I appreciate everyone's detailed feedback. I love this website. I will definitely post when I get my wife a ride.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrwSwitch View Post
    I took about a week and a half to find my track bike too. I just stuck a feed on my home page that kept track of a Craig's List search. I actually bumped into the ad when I opened a CL page to revise my price up - figured I'd do it in steps until I got to the start of track season. So, I don't think putting in some bracket prices and search terms made searching CL a particularly arduous exercise, and I do find mine to be full of crap too, if I don't do that.

    I hadn't read the 510H build thread before. Normally I find them kind of boring, but yours was an exception. If you're going to bring it up, you might include a link, so the poster knows how what you're suggesting turned out for you. I think goals and perspective are pretty important in how a person approaches buying bikes, and your threads really make both of our points better than I think our posts do.
    I'd LOVE to have a better Craigslist section for bikes here in Omaha. However, if we did, I'd be up to like 12 bikes!

    Glad you liked the Leader build thread. Honestly, I need to add to it, since I've pretty much swapped everything out except for the cranks, bottom bracket, and headset. My friend, who does my derailleur adjustments and other bike related stuff, was the benefactor of parts I didn't want or need for both the Leader and the Trek 820.

    I've nicknamed my Leader "The Money Pit" since I've put so much darn money into the thing, for pretty minor upgrades (e.g. going from an 80mm Rockshox Dart 2 to a 100mm RST Omega lockout fork). However, I'm pretty much done doing upgrades, and it is now a singlespeed. I think, though, that I would have saved lots of money had I just purchased a Bikes Direct bike and swapped the parts over to the Leader frame.

    I've only ordered 1 mountain bike from Bikes Direct, and that was a Windsor Cliff 4500, which felt too small at first, but it grew on me, and I liked the sizing. I'm interested in seeing how the 600HT is different, but I'm pretty sure the frame geometry is going to be similar, except I think the "long travel" will make a difference in the feel (not sure if it will be 100 or 120mm), and of course, the parts are a lot better than the Windsor.

    I've timed myself on the first part of a mountain bike course here in Omaha, and on my Schwinn FS and Leader singlespeed, the times are nearly identical, at about 18 and a half minutes (18:42 with the Leader). I'm going to time myself on the Motobecane to see if my time is faster or not. I may end up going with another frame, but first I want to see how the 600HT stacks up against the other two bikes. My guess is that for now, I'll probably want to keep the 600HT frame, because I can see the potential benefit of having the shorter top tube over the Leader (e.g. making it easier to "wing" the bike - the Windsor was great for jumps, and I expect the same for the 600HT), but we will see.

    Anyway, for those interested, here are the threads on the Leader build and singlespeed conversion:

    http://forums.mtbr.com/beginners-cor...**-737782.html

    Please help me convert my mountain bike into a singlespeed

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