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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    New question here. Bike Advice Please! Hybrid? MTB?

    Hi,
    My previous biking experience included the inexpensive Schwinn model (please don't ask me anything about it though I had it for near fifteen years and now my daughter does!) around town, on simple groomed trails, and hauling my kids and now my groceries in the tag along. I have always loved biking and now have more time to bike. I am now looking to upgrade to a bike that can still do those things, but provide me with longer and more advanced trail rides yet still haul my tag along for groceries in town and allow me to bike extensively in town.

    I had been looking at the Neko S 16", (which is at the TOP of my budget) but after looking around I'm unsure if a hybrid is the way to go...any advice greatly appreciated...if needed; I'm 5'8" and medium build. What type of bike (and any recommended models works too!) do you think would suit my situation best?

    Thank you!

  2. #2
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    So it seems you have a Trek dealer in your area, what other brand dealers do you have in your area? This will allow people to give more relevant recommendations. Also, it looks like $650 is the top of your spending limit?

    I have never owned a hybrid bike. I pedaled one around a parking lot a bit once. My impression is that it would be decent at road riding and alright at very mild off road biking. A buddy brought a guy riding with us that was on a hybrid and he ended up walking the vast majority of the trail, not too fun for him. A HT MTB will be just as competent on road but give you a better off road experience. A MTB will typically have a little more front travel, more tire clearance, stouter wheelset, slightly more trail orientated geometry and just be more stout. I wouldn't suggest a hybrid to anyone looking to go on trails. Some people might disagree.

    My typical recommendation on entry level MTBs is to find a bike in your price range, that fits you well, has disc brakes and preferably a 9 speed drive train (avoid a 7 speed). I might suggest a test ride a 29er MTB as well but 29ers are my preference. Test ride as many different bikes as you can and you should figure out better what feels right to you.

    Also, because of the Neko being a woman's bike I can assume you are female? You don't HAVE to get a female bike, you may be able to get a better deal on a men's bike that will work just as well for you due to the LBS presumably selling a higher volume of them. Again just make sure it is comfortable and see if the LBS will work with you on tailoring the fit. You may need to have them put on a shorter stem, narrow the bars and maybe a female orientated seat. This is due to women TYPICALLY having shorter torso, narrower shoulders and different width sits bones. Many LBSs will work with you on these items at little to no cost.

  3. #3
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    A hybrid will be better on the paved road than a MTB, it can generally handle dirt roads if there are not a lot of rocks, ruts or roots and it is not too steep.

  4. #4
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    IMO hybrids s@ck. Never rode one I liked, not even on roads. Would rather have a mtb with right geo and tires any day. A lock out fork for smoother stuff is a definite plus also.
    "Tortured by mental illness" ~monogod

  5. #5
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    Reputation: thegweed's Avatar
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    You can take a mountain bike on the street, but you can't mountain bike with a hybrid-that's all there is to it. Get a mountain bike with some tires that roll well, and a decent front fork.
    NTFTC

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