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Thread: Begginer's bike

  1. #1
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    Begginer's bike

    Greetings everyone,

    I have a dillema! I don't have any experience in riding and i want to buy a mountain bike. I want to be able to get there by bike (~15km), ride uphill and downhill.

    What will be the best bike to start? HT xc, am/trail fs, enduro fs or something else?

    I read somewhere that will be better to start with hardtail 120 - 140mm, others told me that i need fs enduro etc. I ended Up more confused than ever!

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    Whats style trails are you riding? whats your budget? We need more information to help you with something like this. There are a lot of beginner forums already asking a similar question. Just fill in a few more details or do a search on the subject.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ronnieron12 View Post
    Whats style trails are you riding? whats your budget? We need more information to help you with something like this. There are a lot of beginner forums already asking a similar question. Just fill in a few more details or do a search on the subject.

    I am not riding any trails, i don't have any mountain bike so far. I want to start mtb. I want to be able to do as much things as i can on the mountain, i mean ride uphill, go with some speed on descent and be able to pedal till the mountain. In a few words i guess: a bike to try all styles in an average level without fear. Not xc, not downhill but a bit of both.

    I did some research and i think i need a trail fs. Suspension about 140-160 if i am right.

    The thing is that is better to ride hardtail in the beggining or it doesn't matter at all? Read somewhere that you can "evolve" better if you ride hardtail and then fs, and its preferable than start with fs bike! Is that make sense to you?

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    You still need to tell us a budget. If you are willing to spend $ 2500 ,there are a lot bikes that would work . For the kind of riding you are describing a cross country bike/trail bike would be the best all round.A lot of people say that you should start off on a rigid ,I don't agree.Go test ride some bikes .

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    only problem with FS first bike is tuning the shocks yourself, some people struggle and or do it wrong making it an expensive mistake.. anyways ill throw in my suggestions, some bikes that might be around ur budget and i like

    KONA BIKES | 2014 BIKES | TRAIL 29" HT | HONZO

    KONA BIKES | 2014 BIKES | ENDURO | PROCESS 134

    Santa Cruz Heckler

    Yeti SB-75 Comp Bike 2014 > Complete Bikes > Mountain Bikes | Jenson USA

  6. #6
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    Start with a hardtail and move to full susser when you get your basic skills dialed in.

    Why do you think you need 120-140mm or more of travel, because someone told you so?

    Enduro is the latest fad, it was also called trail, all mountain and many other ways to describe a long travel bike that's not a dh bike.

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    To begin with, thanks for the replies.

    @rangeriderdave
    My budget is about 1500euro, so the choices is two: new hardtail or used fs trail. As for the ht (most of them pure xc 100mm fork) i tried to test some models and noone had any bike to test And i literally went everywhere in Athens!

    @joel787
    Thanks for the propositions. I saw honzo and liked it, went to find it and noone has it, they all waiting the 2015 season! As for the fs bikes i haven't done any research so far cause i still wondering what type is the right choice for me. If i decide fs trail then i ll see them carefully!

    @DiRt DeViL
    Yes ι have heard about the development in ht compere to fs as conserned the riding skills. I think as you said that i need more sus than 100, cause i want to be able to develop some speed on descents and not just "slow" riding there, and everyone told me that speed descents its pretty dangerous on an pure xc bike! That's they have told me, never tried it, but the most guys agree on that and tbh seems logical to me!

    Enduro, trail and am as far as i know are different bikes and races. Enduro has much more descents and little uphill or flat trails, so i am not for that. I think i am (or will in future) need a trail bike about 120-150mm not more not less.

    I will go to a local shop again tommorow, to check some stuff and talk to the owner (competes in enduro races) but most likely i'll get a medium hardtail 29er with 100mm as first bike and if i need something more fast i ll build a bike slowly i guess Love nimble9 frame

    P.S. Is anyone has experience with devinci bikes? If i decide to go for ht 29er thinking about these two:

    Devinci jack rc:
    DEVINCI

    Devinci wooky xp:
    DEVINCI

    I have read and heard a lot of good stuff about their handmade frames from Canada! Is that a solid bike to start with?

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    well, honestly I'm biased to the the honzo, i don't own one but i would really LOVE to have one! but if ur set on devinci the wooky seems like a better long term if later u upgrade forks to longer travel, plus shorter chain stays than the jack. the honzo has an inch shorter chain stays than the wooky, which adds more pop to the fun, check the taro its cheaper than the honzo with similar specs

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    Thats a pretty good budget for a first bike and it does open up your options. But you also have to factor in the equipment as well such as a helmet, gloves, bike specific shorts, multitool, spare tubes or whatever else you decide to get.

    Should look at a Canyon AL 29 6.9 which goes for $1000 euros and a nice equipped bike.

    Canyon | Mountainbikes | Grand Canyon AL 29 6.9

  10. #10
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    I think you're right that it's between new hardtails and used FS bikes.

    I don't have saddle time on the new crop of hardtails with 120 mm or more travel. They sound cool, but I worry that having all that travel in front and none in back could mess with the geometry of the bike in g-outs and landing jumps and drops. Certainly a 100 mm hardtail is a capable bike that doesn't have any weird handling behaviors to speak of.

    I've demoed a somewhat broad range of travels in FS. 100 to 140 all do the same thing, though the emphasis changes. So if you're looking at used bikes, don't exclude any of those - you give yourself a better chance to get something awesome.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

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    @joel787 I have checked taro along with honzo, but noones has neither of the bikes here! The are all waiting the 2015 season! Thanks for the suggestions thought!

    @Shakester I also have checked Canyon a lot. Some things like bad customer service, some defective frames and some compaints for the sizes made me to afraid that brand

    Quote Originally Posted by AndrwSwitch View Post
    Certainly a 100 mm hardtail is a capable bike that doesn't have any weird handling behaviors to speak of.

    I've demoed a somewhat broad range of travels in FS. 100 to 140 all do the same thing, though the emphasis changes. So if you're looking at used bikes, don't exclude any of those - you give yourself a better chance to get something awesome.
    When u say that is a capable bike, what do u mean? As far as i undestand xc ht's are made for uphill climbing and are pretty dangerous on downhills (and i don't mean extreme downhills or jumps!). At least that is what i have read! Do i have the wrong impression? Does 100mm ht let you get any speed on downhill sections or any mini jumps?

    Think i will go for a new ht 29er. The question is:

    Does the 100mm fork allow you to trail fast or you just trail and climbing the mountains? Does it allow any "fun"? If yes then i think i am gonna go for that!

    If not i might need one like On One Parkwood with 120mm fork:
    On-One Parkwood Shimano Deore Mountain Bike | On - One .

    P.S. As far as i can see noone has any devinci experience :/

  12. #12
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    A 100mm HT 29er is going to be able to shred anything you can throw at it for a long time. That's a good amount of travel to start with, and on a 29er it's going to feel like even more.

    Keep in mind that everything is a trade-off. More mm of travel equals more fun to point down technical descents, but less fun to get there.

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    Quote Originally Posted by joel787 View Post
    A 100mm HT 29er is going to be able to shred anything you can throw at it for a long time. That's a good amount of travel to start with, and on a 29er it's going to feel like even more.

    Keep in mind that everything is a trade-off. More mm of travel equals more fun to point down technical descents, but less fun to get there.
    Ι have no experience at all at any kind of forks or in mtb in general. I just see the "races" of the mtb bikes. I am looking at xc races and i see just a constant uphill/slow riding with nothing more that maybe some flat descents and maybe some 3cm jumps ;D

    Its not the style i want to ride. As far as i can understand by the race's videos the one it fits my taste its the enduro with a little bit more pedaling (as far all the videos i saw are mostly descents and some flat trails and no or minor uphill).

    I know what i want to do on the mountain, i am still figuring out what bike fits the best for that ^^

  14. #14
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    I started to write way too much about how people have a weird attitude about XC these days, but it's not like anyone ever reads things on the internet and changes a view. Let's just say I don't think you understand XC and leave it at that.

    Anyway, if what you're most interested in is descending and you're willing to sacrifice some trail feel and uphill handling for it, get a AM bike and call it a day. They can still climb singletrack, and we really all have to take our best guess getting started.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrwSwitch View Post
    I started to write way too much about how people have a weird attitude about XC these days, but it's not like anyone ever reads things on the internet and changes a view. Let's just say I don't think you understand XC and leave it at that.
    I don't understand it at all because i havent done it! You can't understand really something with YouTube videos!

    If you riding xc feel free to analyze it a bit more, especially the 100mm bike and what potentials does it have! I would be really grateful!

    If i choose an xc i ll prolly go for a devinci jack/wooky.

    The real question now is 100mm devinci, 110mm on the same 'xc' devinci or go for something with 120mm stock?

    What would be the best choice for you to learn the basic mtb - trail skills? Think at the bottom of your head that i prolly will want to do enduro in the future, if that helps, and if i get right what enduro is. Something between xc and dh in my head for now.

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    When I started mountain biking the only bikes were rigid ,I rode them down some big hills . Most of the its the rider holding back the bike .

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    BUT, how are your trails? You say you never ridden them yet. You should rent a bike and ride your trails to see how the terrain is. If your trails are completely smooth all the way around then there is nothing wrong with a XC bike. If your trails are flowy/smooth but also has technical sections you can still get away with a XC bike but an AM bike is more playful and fun. AM bike also means you can go faster down techy sections with confidence.

    Nothing wrong with a HT either especially if your trails are smooth all the way around. I started on a HT with 4" travel fork and I rode smooth and technical terrain. I learned to pick lines, learned to maneuver the bike, and learned how to absorbs bumps. When I got a FS bike everything felt so easy to me. AM bike is more fun and playful.

    So with that said, good luck with your buy and keep us posted on what you end up getting?
    A spotless bike is a bored bike.

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    Personally, I really like a 150ish full suspension bike as a do-it-all rig.
    Judging by a couple vids, if these are some of the type of trails you're looking to have a good time with, I'd definitely go with something leaning toward the 'all-mountain' range, specially with all that rock laying you seem to have laying around. Yeah, we all rode rigid hardtails off cliffs back in the day, I'm not saying you can't ride whatever on a hardtail, but a FS bike on choppy terrain like it appears is common near you is just more fun to me.

    Looks like some great riding to be had there - I'm a little jealous


    MTB in Zagorochoria, Greece 2010 - YouTube

    at St George Parnitha trail DH 13/5/12 - YouTube




    I've been riding a rebranded Devinci Hecktik for a trail bike for the past few seasons and I like it a lot, though it's a bit more than I really need these days. Well made frame; it's held up a lot better than just about any other FS bike I've had as far as pivots, etc. I would definitely by another of their bikes, though probably something with a bit less travel.
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    @rangerriderdave If that's the case then i should start with a ht!


    @pacing08 To be honest i have 2 mountains pretty close to me that has every type of trail yoy can imagine, from smooth to very steep and rocky! So it's really up to the rider and his level on what trail he will ride. Never done any of them, but watched a lot.

    Quote Originally Posted by pacing08 View Post
    Nothing wrong with a HT either especially if your trails are smooth all the way around. I started on a HT with 4" travel fork and I rode smooth and technical terrain. I learned to pick lines, learned to maneuver the bike, and learned how to absorbs bumps. When I got a FS bike everything felt so easy to me. AM bike is more fun and playful.

    So with that said, good luck with your buy and keep us posted on what you end up getting?
    For that i think the logic sequense if to go from a ht to fs, instead to start with fs bike, so prolly i will go for a ht!

    @slapheadmofo Thank you for the review! I prolly go for a devinci too!

    So i propably go for a hardtail! Does 110mm has so much difference from 120mm? Devinci bikes that i am looking to have 100mm and they can go as much as 110mm. Thinking about ride with the stock 100mm frame and when i need more change it to an 110mm...will this be enough to feel any difference?

    Thank you all for the help, it's really awsome!

  20. #20
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    Re: Begginer's bike

    Quote Originally Posted by Spanias Harris View Post
    I don't understand it at all because i havent done it! You can't understand really something with YouTube videos!

    If you riding xc feel free to analyze it a bit more, especially the 100mm bike and what potentials does it have! I would be really grateful!

    If i choose an xc i ll prolly go for a devinci jack/wooky.

    The real question now is 100mm devinci, 110mm on the same 'xc' devinci or go for something with 120mm stock?

    What would be the best choice for you to learn the basic mtb - trail skills? Think at the bottom of your head that i prolly will want to do enduro in the future, if that helps, and if i get right what enduro is. Something between xc and dh in my head for now.
    I hate YouTube videos. I really don't have the patience.

    Back in the day, mountain bikers rode whatever trails were there. They weren't necessarily made for cycling. In fact, they probably weren't. They'd have switchbacks, rock gardens, root beds, steps, ruts, whatever. Riding that stuff up and down hills and mountains is what XC really is, at heart. XC bikes are nimble, to get through that stuff in both directions.

    Of course descending was the first thing I enjoyed about mountain biking. It's a rush - why not? But when it really started to grab me was when it occurred to me to try climbing some of my favorite pieces of singletrack.

    I climb and descend on almost every trail on the mountain down the road from me. That's what XC is about for me. I'm the first to admit I'm not catching big airs or dropping multi-foot drops. But I'm also mountain biking while those guys are walking up logging roads. I think we both think we're doing it better.

    Surprisingly often, I see guys with GoPros and body armor descending on two-way singletrack. I think, "The flow line's that way." Real loud. I think those guys are maybe part of why XC's image is so odd lately. They're riding XC. But they're kitted for AM, and maybe they see themselves as riding AM. So XC must be something less. What's left isn't really mountain biking.

    I do mostly XC, I don't think the idea of graduating from XC even really makes sense, and I'm getting what I want to out of MTB.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

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    @andrwswitch Thanks a lot for the analysis. The truth is that you never know if you like something unless you do it.

    From my limited theoritical knowledge i think the enduro type fits me the most, but i ll find out when i try it!

    I ll prolly buy devinci Jack rc as my first bike!

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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrwSwitch View Post
    I hate YouTube videos. I really don't have the patience.

    Back in the day, mountain bikers rode whatever trails were there. They weren't necessarily made for cycling. In fact, they probably weren't. They'd have switchbacks, rock gardens, root beds, steps, ruts, whatever. Riding that stuff up and down hills and mountains is what XC really is, at heart. XC bikes are nimble, to get through that stuff in both directions.

    Of course descending was the first thing I enjoyed about mountain biking. It's a rush - why not? But when it really started to grab me was when it occurred to me to try climbing some of my favorite pieces of singletrack.

    I climb and descend on almost every trail on the mountain down the road from me. That's what XC is about for me. I'm the first to admit I'm not catching big airs or dropping multi-foot drops. But I'm also mountain biking while those guys are walking up logging roads. I think we both think we're doing it better.

    Surprisingly often, I see guys with GoPros and body armor descending on two-way singletrack. I think, "The flow line's that way." Real loud. I think those guys are maybe part of why XC's image is so odd lately. They're riding XC. But they're kitted for AM, and maybe they see themselves as riding AM. So XC must be something less. What's left isn't really mountain biking.

    I do mostly XC, I don't think the idea of graduating from XC even really makes sense, and I'm getting what I want to out of MTB.
    OMG DUDE!! You're reading my mind. Ive been riding the same trails forever. 6 years ago when I got back from the service everyone was riding 150mm FS bikes on the same trails where 80mm hard tails were the norm before. All the sudden people came to shop and were outraged when i suggested an XC hardtail for the local trails saying they needed more travel for all the "jumps and drops" I know these trails like the back of my hand, help build a number of them. There was nothing requiring that much travel.

    After I left CA and moved to Virginia. The scene here was better lots of people single speeding, lots of rigid, and a lot of people riding "XC". Slowly but surely recently we started carrying longer travel bikes at the shop due to demand. Most people who come in off the street armed with internet research don't want the 120mm EXs they want the 150mm Remedy. Lots of people riding big travel bikes now on the same trails everyone was riding ridged on just 4 years ago. Everyone claiming what there doing isn't XC. To me if its an XC trail your ridding XC.
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    Go hike your local trail, and rent a bike a couple times for a day.

  24. #24
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    I haven't really analyzed anything or said anything theoretical.

    All I'm saying is (like Ronnieron says) if what I was doing was XC in 1999 and I'm doing the same thing now, granted in a different city, it's still XC. XC is the whole mountain.

    OP, you might also find out what competition is actually available in your area if you're going to guess a riding discipline based on it. XC is really the most common kind of mountain bike racing going, although enduro and endurance (not to be confused) are really taking off in my region.

    And like others have said - go hike your trails.

    For me, the big selling point for a long-travel bike is a higher speed limit. But if there aren't trails built to exploit that, what's the point?
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

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    don't be too hung up on travel, IMO no bike is better than the other, they are just different.. people race xc, dh, trail so they are all racing bikes... to me the main difference is the geo on each discipline which translate to handling and feeling .. every trail has different needs, internet research might be useless if u don't know your own backyard..

    xc = tight & technical with 70degree HA, CS 17+
    AM = flowier, faster around 67degree HA, CS 16-17
    DH = balls out around 65degree HA, 15+

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