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.
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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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    Beginner Upgrades- Fork / maybe brakes?

    Yo everyone.

    I'm looking into the future a little bit here and planning for when I have some money-figure I'll start looking now because we'll... frankly... I'm bored.

    I purchased a 26 inch 2010 hardrock disc over the past month and it's certainly working great. The only real cons that I've noticed so far are the fork not holding up too well on fast rocky downhills. Not absorbing much really I guess you could say.

    I'm going to school full time but just picked up a part time job and summers right around the corner. I figure I'll have a fair amount of money soon enough. What do you guys feel is a good amount of money to invest in a fork with my model bike? I don't think dropping a grand on a fork that costs 2x as much as my bike is a good investment if I don't have a great bike to put it on... I was thinking in the range of maybe.... 200-300ish. Any recommendations? I was checking out Marzocchi forks and they seemed to have a good number of forks in that range. I was looking at the Marzocchi 33 Lock Out Suspension Fork 2009 and the Marzocchi 22 Rlo Suspension Fork 2010. Any thoughts on those or any other recommendations?

    I've also heard many people say that the disc brakes that come stock on the hardrock aren't the best. I personally haven't had any problems, but then again this is my first bike with disc brakes so I really dont know what GOOD disc breaks feel like. For all I know I could be riding with crappy brakes and not even realize it. What do you guys think about the hardrock breaks/potential upgrades?

    Thanks everyone, sorry for the long winded post.

  2. #2
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    http://www.bikepedia.com/QuickBike/B...9239&Type=bike

    If you're satisfied with the Tektros just focus on a fork upgrade. Though the Avid BB7 are probably the best mechanical brakes and seem cheap enough.

    As for forks, I've read the Rock Shox Tora 318 is a good entry upgrade from stock Darts/Suntour/Spinner/etc.

  3. #3
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    Awesome, thanks noya.

    The tora looks like a solid fork, thanks.

    I'm not quite sure what I think of the brakes, I haven't really had any problems so I guess im cool with them... haha

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Colonialfez
    I purchased a 26 inch 2010 hardrock disc over the past month and it's certainly working great. The only real cons that I've noticed so far are the fork not holding up too well on fast rocky downhills. Not absorbing much really I guess you could say.

    Awesome, thanks noya.
    You're welcome.

    The fast rocky downhill will definitely disrupt an entry level "spring fork" which is basically a pogo stick lol. The Tora (and any other good fork) will have adjustable dampening which should smooth out most cross country riding situations.

  5. #5
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    i may have a set of almost new Juicy 5's if you decide to upgrade the brakes...
    Current Rides:
    2011 Trek Remedy 8

    To Get Me There:
    2012 Ford F150 Ecoboost

  6. #6
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    how much u want for them
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    2010 FSR XC
    2010 ALLEZ
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    Down East Cyclists

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by biggoofy1
    how much u want for them
    don't know yet, you can PM me an offer if you wish...
    Current Rides:
    2011 Trek Remedy 8

    To Get Me There:
    2012 Ford F150 Ecoboost

  8. #8
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    I dont know if you are planning on getting an air fork or a coil fork, but you are not going to get much performance improvement from a Tora coil fork. Spend a few more dollars and get a Tora solo-air fork.

  9. #9
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    Also, keep in mind that the increased travel might throw off your geometry, decreasing the headtube angle, making the steering feel less responsive, and maybe voiding your frame warranty if you have one....just an fyi

  10. #10
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    + one on air and take a look at the Recon model i love mine
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by biggoofy1
    + one on air and take a look at the Recon model i love mine
    Air is way better than any coil?

    What's your thoughts on buying a used bike with an upgraded fork? There's an 07 Giant XTC 2 with an 08 Reba Race 100mm, BB7's, XT front/sram x9 rear and almost new kenda nevgal tires. He's asking $500obo.

  12. #12
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    im not to firmiliar with gaint but the specs look nice and thats exactly what i did my bike originally came with a 100mm coil spring and i upgraded to a 120mm air spring due to me being 6'8 250 lol

    and air is much better imo as it can be adjusted to your weight and riding style
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  13. #13
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    There are plenty of good coil spring forks, but at the price point you're looking at air is probably preferable. Air forks are more easily adjustable to a wide range of rider weights.

    David B.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noya
    Air is way better than any coil?

    What's your thoughts on buying a used bike with an upgraded fork? There's an 07 Giant XTC 2 with an 08 Reba Race 100mm, BB7's, XT front/sram x9 rear and almost new kenda nevgal tires. He's asking $500obo.
    Air is much better than coils in most applications. They tend to require more maintenance but they outperform coil suspension systems. You will notice that the higher end suspension systems out there are almost all exclusively air today. Also, air forks, by nature, tend to be significantly lighter.

    As far as the bike goes, sounds like like a great deal. Id look over the frame carefully, especially the undersides of it, and make sure the wheels are still structurally sound.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Colonialfez
    I was checking out Marzocchi forks and they seemed to have a good number of forks in that range. I was looking at the Marzocchi 33 Lock Out Suspension Fork 2009 and the Marzocchi 22 Rlo Suspension Fork 2010. Any thoughts on those or any other recommendations?
    I'd stay away from the lower end Marz forks. One came stock on my XTC (a Marz 22 w/ lock out), and they're basically the same sort of pogo-stick fork you're looking to get away from.

    The Tora forks that others have mentioned will be a solid step up. Jenson had some OEM Recon 351s for a little over $200 a while ago. I picked one up and love it to death - it feels like I got a brand new bike. Seems to be a good deal if they still have em.

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