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.
Results 1 to 14 of 14
  1. #1
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    Which bike out of the Three?

    Hey guys,
    I'm new into mountain biking and trials and am looking at getting my first bike. I am looking at used bikes in the area and have done some research and found these three bikes that fit my super low budget and have good reviews.

    2001 GT I-Drive 4.0 FS - $450
    This frame has no cracks

    2007 Novara Method 1.0 - $500 (19 frame)
    Full Suspension; 24 speed, 19 in Aluminum Frame, 100 mm Manitou Froks, Manitou Rear Shock 4" travel, Shimano Disc breaks, Shimano deore front derailluer, New Shimano SLX rear derailluer, New break cables. Recent tune up, Pic's available on request.

    2008 Felt Redemption 2 - $500 (17.5 frame)
    Fox DHXAir 3.0, adjustable Pro Pedal, bottom out and rebound adjust, boost valve
    Integrated headset, 7075 aluminum seat clamp w/CroMo bolt and barrel nut, two derailleur hangers


    Could you guys help me chose if this bikes are a good value for the price and which is the better buy? I'm 6'1 150lbs so i think the Felt at 17.5inch might be too small?

    Thanks a ton, I cant wait to start riding again!

  2. #2
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    Although I can't offer you any advice about those particular bikes...

    Depending on the length of your inseam, all of those bikes (even the 19") might be too small. At 6'1", you're probably (though not always) going to be looking for 21"+ bike frames.

  3. #3
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    I personally am partial to the GT i-Drive, the platform works, always had. But like the previous post stated, I would certainly factor the proper sized frame into my buying decision. Best of luck!
    Ever been to Mountain Bike Tales Digital Magazine? Now if only the print rags would catch on!

  4. #4
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    None of the above.

    1) GT is too old

    2) Price seems a little too high, I bet the bike is not a 2007, maybe 2005 or 2006, but it's hard to find info on REI bikes. 2008 model sold new at REI for about $1000 and had much nicer components than you list.

    3) Size is too small

    I say keep looking. At your height you'll probably be looking for a 19" 20" or size L frame. Based on your profile, looks like you are in NoVA. Go into one of the Performance bike stores near you, they have some decent bikes for beginners at cheap prices. $500 at Performance can get you a pretty good bike with a warranty.

  5. #5
    Hergules
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    New vs. used

    I agree with Oldskool.... Performance has some great deals and if it isn't on sale, the manager will give you 10% off if you just ask for it. If you can stretch to $700 or $800, you can get some decent components on the bike too.

    If you really want to stay around $500, then a used bike will net you a better ride. There are regularly good deals on Craigslist, but take a knowledgeable bike person with you when you go to see the bike. Bikes depreciate in value fast, so if you're not hung up on the "new" factor, take a look at what's out there. Also JOIN the local mountain bike club and post a request for a good used bike on their website or forum....you'll probably find some high-quality offerings there too.....and you'll probably also find some riding partners at the same time

    Lastly the larger frame is mostly important because you need a long enough top tube for your height. The 19-21" frames should still give you plenty of stand over clearance (assuming your about a 34" inseam) but going smaller will likely require you to put a (too) long stem on the bike to make it fit comfortably.... not good for handling and endo avoidance.

  6. #6
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    I would avoid the iDrive. 2001 is nine years old - that's fine if it's your bike and you know you've looked after it, but maybe the previous owner was a budding freerider who is now selling off his training bike!

    The Novara looks like the best deal out of the three to me
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  7. #7
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    If budget is a issue and you want bang for our buck, you will have to work for it. With that being said, if I only had $500 I would buy the Felt Redemption 2 strip it down and sell the frame on ebay, and then buy another frame on ebay with a top tube lenght of 24". Look at it this way, that bike was $3000 bike 2 yrs ago. It is so easy to replace a frame. That can't be said about that level of components.

  8. #8
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    How about a new Motobecane Fantom 29er for $595? For a guy your size, a 29er would be a great ride and it would be brand new as well.

    http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/...antom29_08.htm

    I just bought a Windsor Cliff Pro, and have been very happy with it. If you're not afraid of a little assembly, buying online is a pretty good use of your money. I've got a thread here of my build if you want to see what kind of assembly is required: Windsor Cliff 29R Pro - Build Thread and Ride Report

  9. #9
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    Hey so a new updated I found a 20" 2003 Kona Stinky for $250.

    These were in the rental fleet of a very well known Ski Resort and have had regular maintenance by a professional bike mechanic.

    The Stinkys (blue/black) have 5 inches of suspension travel with Marzocchi Bomber Junior T forks, Fox Vanilla rear shocks, Hayes HFX-9 hydraulic disk brakes, Truvativ Hussefelt cranks, and Shimano 6 speed gearing (modified from the 16 speed original gearing).


    should I stay away from rental fleets?


    Thanks TwoHeadsBrewing - I came across that site when i was doing my search and saw they had great prices but didn't know if i could trust the site or not looked kind of shaddy. good to know its legit though! Thanks for your help!

  10. #10
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    Kona Stinky is a Freeride bike, and not very good at riding normal trails. Also it likely came from Snowshoe, and if it did, trust me you don't want it.

  11. #11
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    Any advice please on a 2003 Kona Kahuna Deluxe

    Hi everyone,

    Looking for a used bike for my girl and wonder what you all thought of the 2003 Kona Kahuna Deluxe. I found one in pretty good condition and their asking $550 for it. Said it was lightly used by his girl as well and has been sitting. Can you give me your thoughts on this whether its a good deal?

    Thanks in advance... Also, my girl is 5'3".. Would the 16" bike be good for her?

  12. #12
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    I did go to performance to try to look at bikes and get correctly fitted but they the location i went to in Reston, va had very pushy sales people.

    I actually heard the manager in the aisle over tell a female employee to use her charm to make a sale with me. That really put me off of trusting anything i heard from them after that.

  13. #13
    Hergules
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    Not sure about that model, but at 5'3", she would probably be better on a 14" frame (small) . Definitely check the reach (with acceptable stem length) and standover . FYI Barracuda used to make a standard 12" frame as well, just to fit petite women who were about her size.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by rwl123456
    I did go to performance to try to look at bikes and get correctly fitted but they the location i went to in Reston, va had very pushy sales people.

    I actually heard the manager in the aisle over tell a female employee to use her charm to make a sale with me. That really put me off of trusting anything i heard from them after that.
    Well never been in that store, but I've never had problems in the Springfield, or Fairfax stores. But their employees aren't the best, I guess that's why their prices are so low.

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