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. Buying my first mtb - Kranked Factor?

    I'm one step away from buying my first mountain bike. I'm just waiting for confirmation that it will fit in my 2006 Honda Civic 2-door Coupe. I don't want to add a rack on my car.

    I'm a noob. I'm a recreational trail cruiser from Toronto, Canada. I drive out of the city and go trail riding. I normally rent a bike from an outfitter on site.

    I have a small budget. First I looked in bike shops. But the bikes in these shops are beyond my budget. I found one on sale I can afford in a dept store Canadian Tire.

    "Kranked Factor Adult Full Suspension Bike, 26-in"
    Price: $200

    I would be riding once a week on weekends.

    Will this bike do for me???

    Thanks.

  2. #2
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    I have heard nothing good about department store bikes. They are always going to be heavy with crappy components and one size fits all frames. However, if your budget only allows you to get a dep store bike, do what you got to do. One thing I keep hearing on this forum is don't get Full Suspension. Any Full Suspension bike that isn't over $1000 dollars is useless. The "shock" in the back will be detrimental to almost every riding style. In that price range, look for the "hardtail" style bike (front shock in the fork only) with the best components or that fits your body the most.

  3. #3
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    These kind of "full suspension" bikes just add unnecessary weight I would be looking at hardtails.

  4. #4
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    Get on craigslist, pretty much any brand name hardtail you find for $200 made in the last 15 years will be a better buy.

  5. #5
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    Thanks for the info.

    Fyi...I'm a complete dummy when it comes to buying a used bike and as it turns out on shopping for new bike as well. It's becoming stressfull. It was much easier when I rented the bike lol.

    Hardtail bike is now in my scope to purchase. I'm only 5'5 tall. Would be looking for a light weight bike. Small budget. $300 including helmet.

    Is it possible to pick up a bike with this budget and enjoy it for a few years?

    What brand should I be looking for?

  6. #6
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    I think yes, if you look for a used one you could find a great hardtail Trek, Giant, or Specialized under 300. They all make good entry level bikes. Look on Craigslist and maybe ebay if you limit to your area. I check Craigslist a lot and almost everyday I see at least one decent deal on one of these bike brands... And there are more that I'm not familiar with.

    A buddy of mine in Cinci picked up an older Specialized Hardrock for 30 bucks. We went to look at them and the only thing needing replaced were the tubes.

    My personal struggle with buying used was finding one in my size. I'm too dang tall...

    Good luck!

  7. #7
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    I would avoid a dept store/Canadian Tyre bike like the plague. Craigslist is a good option if you know what you're looking for - but if you don't it's also relatively easy to waste your money on a POS. Maybe post the links here for someone to check out when you see something interesting.

    These guys (Freewheel Cycle) do a sale of their rental fleet in the fall as well as blowing out stock that they don't want hanging around all winter. Your best bet would be to save up a few bucks more as best you can and then see what they (or another LBS) can do within your budget. A used bike from a reputable shop is a much safer option than some random person on CL.

    $300 incl a lid isn't a lot to work with so if you can wait a bit and save some more, and then look to the used market that would be your best bet.

  8. #8
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    I don't know where you're located/how big of an urban area nearby... but I did a real quick search 'hardtail disc' in $250-$350 range in the Denver, CO craigslist and immediately came up with this:

    Cannondale f7 Hardtail Mnt Bike $350.00 OBO

    Deals are out there, gotta be patient. This bike was probably like a $550ish type bike when new. Flash 3 benjamins at this guy and he'd probably let it go. Maybe find someone knowledgeable to help you out and hook 'em up with a twelve-pack or something for the assist.

  9. #9
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    Okay thanks for all the info once again.

    I'm located in Toronto Canada. It's a big city. I will dedicate some time in searching for a used reputable brand type of bike. I will also visit a dedicated bike shops. Also, I have just learned that there is a bike show in October in my city and very popular one it is. However I'm not counting on scoring a bike for $300 from the show.

    Fyi...the following brands you've mentioned (Trek, Giant, or Specialized).
    These are above $600 canadian. I know...everything is expensive in Canada. Hence...I drive a Civic. The good thing about it is...it allows me to have a hobby and I'm trying to include Mtb trail/urband riding as one of them. Providing funds is available of course.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by trail_cruzer View Post
    Okay thanks for all the info once again.

    I'm located in Toronto Canada. It's a big city. I will dedicate some time in searching for a used reputable brand type of bike. I will also visit a dedicated bike shops. Also, I have just learned that there is a bike show in October in my city and very popular one it is. However I'm not counting on scoring a bike for $300 from the show.

    Fyi...the following brands you've mentioned (Trek, Giant, or Specialized).
    These are above $600 canadian. I know...everything is expensive in Canada. Hence...I drive a Civic. The good thing about it is...it allows me to have a hobby and I'm trying to include Mtb trail/urband riding as one of them. Providing funds is available of course.
    I know this isn't your size but just an example, much better that a Dept store bike Rocky Mountain Fusion Mountain Bike 2009

    Also, maybe check out this shop 33% Off all Police Auction Bikes
    13 Lenz Lunchbox punkass

  11. #11
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    I thinks this bike is some how expensive ...why don't you try any other?

  12. #12
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    Thanks for this suggestion.

    [Also, maybe check out this shop 33% Off all Police Auction Bikes[/QUOTE]

  13. #13
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    Is Jamis a good brand?

    Jamis Trail X1 Front Suspension Mountain Bike 2011

  14. #14
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    I think it's as good a brand as most of the others out there. I'd look at the component level and fit/geometry, and compare it against other similarly-priced bikes taking those factors into consideration.

  15. #15
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    Trail Jamis is a good starting bike from everything that ive read.
    People ask me all the time "who beat you up"? I tell them "a tree". They just look at me funny....

  16. #16
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    What is the difference between XC and AM in hardtail???

  17. #17
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    In general, XC is more "race" oriented. Not as much suspension travel (usually 100mm fork), great at climbing, and somewhat light.

    AM (All mountain) will typically have more suspension travel and be heavier (beefier wheels hopefully) but better suited for rocky sections, downhill and jumps/drops.

    These are just general ideas as to the different categories as I see them

  18. #18
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    I paid 650 for my new Cannondale F7 and I love it. So 350 for a used one in good shape is nice.

  19. #19
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    Check Kijiji. It is much bigger than Craigslist in Canada/Ontario. There can be some good deals on there. You're in Torinto so you should be able to find one cheap. Be prepared to move on a deal fast- the really good ones are gone before you can contact them sometimes. Good deals don't last long.

    Search through "bikes" part of Kijiji. If you don't find anything there, search stuff like "Norco bike" and "Rocky Mountain bike". Sometimes people post them in different sections so they may slip through the cracks.

    I was looking at used bikes but went new (just got mine yesterday)

  20. #20
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    Do entry level hardtail with front disc have quick release of wheels?

    So far I've only seen v brakes with quick release of wheels.

    I want one with a quick release of wheels because I have very limited space in my apartment and car.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by trail_cruzer View Post
    Do entry level hardtail with front disc have quick release of wheels?

    So far I've only seen v brakes with quick release of wheels.

    I want one with a quick release of wheels because I have very limited space in my apartment and car.
    I purchased a 2012 Trek Gary Fisher Marlin 29er the other day for $720 + tax (I'm in Canada) and that is considered entry level. It has a quick release and it has disc brakes and is a hardtail.

    On the other hand a $700 Specialized bike I looked at, with discs, didn't. I think you just have to look around and find the ones that do.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by trail_cruzer View Post
    Do entry level hardtail with front disc have quick release of wheels?
    Outside of a track bike, single speed or a kids bike you'll be hard pressed to find any off-the-rack bicycle that doesn't come with quick release wheels. The type of brake is irrelevant (unless it's a coaster where you pedal backwards to brake).

  23. #23
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    I'm in Canada as well. But the challenge is that I have a small budget. I may have to sacrifice the disc brake and settle with v brakes to have the quick release of wheels.

  24. #24
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    Is K2 a good brand for recreactional riding?

    K2 Zed 1.3 Front Suspension Mountain Bike 2011?

  25. #25
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    Spesialized HardRock is the first New bike to consider. Nothing from dept stores is SAFE

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