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  1. #1
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    New question here. Educated experienced help needed.

    Good Morning,
    I will try to keep this short but have lot of questions.
    I am a MTB Newbie, I know that I do not know a lot about bikes.
    I am going to purchase a bike in the near future, but as of right now do not know exactly what I am looking for or what I "should" be looking for.
    I want a multi versatile bike. I think I would prefer full suspension over front suspension.
    Now, my bike budget is around $2K.
    I really like the bikes from (Felt, Specialized, Jamis, Scott) but they are also not very inexpensive.
    Okay folks don't lynch me now...but...
    I hear a lot of bad things about bikesdirect.com and I don't see what its based on. Is Motobecane junk because it does not say Felt etc. on it ??? I'm inexperienced but it does seem as though their bike come with forks, derailleurs, brakes etc found on higher end bikes.
    What am I missing here? And if you had $2K to spend on a new bike, which direction would you go and why ?
    Any help is appreciated, Thank you

  2. #2
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    I certainly would not refer to Motobecane "junk..." bikesdirect can put together some very good components at a really decent price point...a friend just bought a new one just for the XT drive train and fork.

    You should think a bit though on the FS ditty...you can get a top-tier alloy HT for 2K from all the mfg you like and recognize...do you really need a FS at this point?
    2014 Nail Trail 29...

  3. #3
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    The honest truth is I do not know if I need a FS or if its just because it "looks useful".
    How Would a $2k "known brand HT" compare to a $2K "Motobecane FS"
    I am really trying to educate myself on what to look for and consider, before I make a decision. I am sitting here with the Mountain Bike Action 2014 Buyers Guide, and looking at forums and bikesdirect all at once.

  4. #4
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    I grew up road biking in the 80s and one of the prominent brands at that time was Motobecane. Although they're not well known in the MTB world, they're certainly not junk and have been building quality bikes for many years. Having said that, I wouldn't spend $2K on one if that was my budget.

    When I think of "multi-versatile" or "all-around" bike, I think of enduro or trail bikes. A bike that you can do a little bit of everything. Its not going climb like an XC nor descend like a DH bike, but you'd be able to do both relatively well. With a $2K budget, there are a lot of choices out there and it may come down to a preference from one brand to another.

    A few examples:

    The Kona Precept DL - $1899.99
    KONA BIKES | 2014 BIKES | TRAIL DS | PRECEPT DL

    Giant Trance 3 - $1999.99
    Giant Trance 27.5 3 - Wheel World Bike Shops - Road Bikes, Mountain Bikes, Bicycle Parts and Accessories. Parts & Bike Closeouts!

  5. #5
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    That's my definition of multi-versatile as well.
    I have looked at FS:
    Felt Virtue Nine 60 / Specialized Camber 29 / Scott Spark 960
    and the HT:
    Specialized Crave Pro / Scott Scale 950
    Anyway, looking at Specs, not really sure what is good/better...or what to avoid and why
    Fox vs Rock Shocks vs Santour
    Shimano Deore vs SPRAM ....

  6. #6
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    this particular argument is nothing new, but I'll present it anyway. built into the cost of a bike purchased at a local bike shop is the cost of shipping, assembling, adjusting, test riding, at least some preliminary fitting (if not a detailed fit), and probably some sort of complementary service for the bike. when you buy a whole bike online, all those responsibilities are left to you, or a shop that you have to pay full price for the services. if you buy a new bike from a reputable shop with good mechanics and a good fitter, the extra cost of the bike is going to be worth it. if you have all the tools and skills (or know a friend who does) you need to assemble, adjust, fit, and maintain your bike, you will save a lot of money buying online.

    as far as Motobecane FS bikes go, I see nothing original or special about the Fantom DS. in fact, the frame design is out-dated and likely does not handle as well as something newer with a better pivot design. in fact, I suspect that all of the Motobecane bikes you see on that site are just generic frames with Motobecane stickers. you would probably be fine buying a hardtail bike if this is the case, but the proprietary suspension technology that the bigger brands are putting out is probably much better than the generic designs on Motobecanes.

  7. #7
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    First of all I want to thank all of you for a.) taking the time to reply, and b.) giving useable feedback.
    Now I just truly have to find the best Value in my +/- $2K pricerange.

  8. #8
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    Chainlove.com: BMC Speedfox SF02/Shimano Deore-SLX Complete Bike - 2012 - $799.99 - 60% off

    BMC SPEEDFOX SF02/SHIMANO DEORE-SLX COMPLETE BIKE - 2012
    $799.99 60% Off
    Reg. $1999.00

  9. #9
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    Don't get too wrapped up in over-analyzing specific componentry - it's pretty much all going to perform quite similarly at a given price point. Most important is fit and feel - test ride as many of the bikes that your are interested in as possible. Some are bound to just feel more 'right' to you than others. In general, your best value is usually going to be used bike. You can easily score a bike for $2k that sold for twice that a couple seasons ago. Technology really doesn't change all that drastically in a few years, despite what the latest ads say.

    FWIW, those Cambers look to be a great all around trail bike.
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  10. #10
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    In the Destin area I would feel a ht would work for a lot of the available terrain. A carbon ht with good compliance engineered into the frame has a broad range. I like the Trek Superfly 9.6. $2400 msrp(5% below listed price) and you could get that down another 10% and a little more for a cash sale.
    Trek Bicycle

    <iframe width="640" height="360" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/0RYNI3kQ2dY?feature=player_detailpage" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

    Twice the fun of an aluminum ht and lighter with more trail feel than a fs.

  11. #11
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    Educated experienced help needed.

    I wouldn't be using the bike just in Destin. I'm planning weekend trips all over.


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  12. #12
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    Educated experienced help needed.

    Just for comparison, what do you all think about this and would you compare it to anything else ?

    http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/...9_fs_xtslx.htm



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    Parts are parts,you need to find out what fits ,if you've had a bike before you can make a good guess . Riding is the only sure way to know.The mail order bikes put on stuff to catch your eye ,they don't tell you where they saved them selves money,you get what you pay for.

  14. #14
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    Another thing to consider...a hardtail in the $2,000 price range is likely going to have a better part spec on it than a full suspension in that price range will...this is speaking of brand new bikes, of course. The 2 out of the previously mentioned that I'm familiar with are the Specialized Crave Pro and Camber 29er. The Camber 29er has a coil sprung Suntour fork, Tektro Hydro disc brakes, and a mix of Alivio, Deore, and SLX. The Crave Pro has a Fox Float fork, Shimano Deore Hydro brakes, and SLX/XT mix.

  15. #15
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    It hasn't been stated here yet, but beware of Bikesdirect's marketing bullshit. My disgust for the website relates to that. BD's website is loaded with marketing BS that borders on outright lies in some cases. For example, that bike you just posted is NOT a $3,000 bike. It is worth exactly the price that is quoted. mack_turtle made a good point about the value adds you get from an actual shop. Being completely new to bikes, you SHOULD count on the additional cost to have a shop build the bike ($60 min) as well as at least one tune up ($60 is probably pretty average here, too) that is already written into the cost of something on of the shop's floor.

    Not to mention, every manufacturer does this, but especially BD. So those "compare to" numbers are looking at just the flashy drivetrain components. They don't really talk about the wheels, bearings, and other less flashy parts. BD is GREAT and giving you really low end stuff there. Like I said, everybody does this to some degree, but BD is a bit excessive. IMO, I'd rather take a lower end drivetrain wear component than a lower end wheelset. A cheap wheelset can cost $100 RETAIL, so the stuff that BD puts on those bikes does not add much to the overall cost of the bike. It is VERY EASY to spend $500, $1,000, or more on a good wheelset, and a good wheelset is actually one of those upgrades you can feel almost as soon as you put it on the bike. Getting something with a better wheelset is always a better choice, if it's in your budget.

    Suspension designs are another thing. That Motobecane is essentially a glorified single pivot. Nothing special about it. A true single pivot has the benefit of fewer pivot points to maintain, but this design doesn't really have that benefit. It functions like a single pivot, but with more pivots to maintain. The Horst Link (Specialized and others), VPP (Santa Cruz and others), Maestro (Giant), and DW-Link (many) are all much better suspension designs.

    There are some deals to be had on new old stock bikes. 2013 models, some 2012 models, and maybe even something older. Used is also an option. With your budget, you can get a LOT of bike. Last summer, I bought my wife a used 2010 carbon Santa Cruz Blur XC with full XTR drivetrain and brakes and lots of other high end goodies for $1800 shipped to our door. It's a $6,000-$7,000 bike. Found it on the MTBR Classifieds. The bikes in there are pretty much all very nice bikes. Very few stinkers, since the folks that post them here tend to be enthusiasts.

    And to the guy who brought up Motobecane in the 80's...it's not the same as the Motobecane of today. Bikes Direct owns the brand name. They buy stock frames from the overseas manufacturers, and slap a sticker on them. Old tech, cheaper materials and production, and they're banking on a name's former recognition. A lot like what happened to Schwinn, Mongoose, and GT. Bought by companies that sell to box stores like walmart. Those brands still do produce higher end product, but by also producing the lower end stuff for big box stores, the brands have been severely diluted from their former glory.

  16. #16
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    Educated experienced help needed.

    Wow Guys, excellent feedback I am getting here.
    So I guess BD does what they do well...
    I see a FS bike on BD with Rock Shocks, Spram, etc.. and am halfway sold because I'm missing the rest because I can't tell yet what to look for.
    I guess for myself I'm better off staying away from BD, due to the fact I wouldn't really know what I'm ordering.


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  17. #17
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    bikes direct is not all bad...

    I got a decent CX bike with decent parts, but the BB is absolute garbage
    and I cannot get the front der dialed. It works but I have to stutter-shift
    and in a race, this blows bigtime.

    so...got a good bike for low bux, but I could have paid the same bux for a craigslist CX bike and it would be 100% dialed without having to replace BB and front der for something that actually matches the build

  18. #18
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    Getting a used bike is a good way to get the most bang for your buck. Sometimes, there is very little difference from a 2012 model to a 2014, but the price difference is quite substantial. Another example is:

    Specialized Stumpjumper FSR Comp 26" - Pinkbike

    This retails for $3000 and its right around your budget if it could be talked down, although its probably over a 5 hour drive for you.

  19. #19
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    Educated experienced help needed.

    That looks like a very nice bike. I don't mind driving somewhere to get a good deal.
    With all the 29ers, 26ers and now 27.5 ers... Are bigger wheels always better ?


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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Charello View Post
    That looks like a very nice bike. I don't mind driving somewhere to get a good deal.
    With all the 29ers, 26ers and now 27.5 ers... Are bigger wheels always better ?


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    No. Yes. Maybe.

    All depends on your preference, the particular bike, how/where you like to ride, etc. 29" are really popular right now (and all the shops will push them because that's just about all they'll have in stock), but there are plenty of people out there on 26" bikes, some even doing things that you're not seeing done on 29".

    If anybody tells you a certain size is definitively 'best' for everyone, don't trust them.
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  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Charello View Post
    That looks like a very nice bike. I don't mind driving somewhere to get a good deal.
    With all the 29ers, 26ers and now 27.5 ers... Are bigger wheels always better ?


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    Thats a discussion that will probably go on for a long time and there really isn't an argument, but more of a preference. All the wheel size has advantages and disadvantages. For me, I prefer a 26" wheel. I just love how nimble it feels. Of course, I haven't tried out every bike out there with all the different wheel sizes so there maybe one out that would feel right for me, but I'm happy with a 26er.

    Opinion: 26 vs 27.5 vs 29-inch Wheels - Pinkbike

  22. #22
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    Educated experienced help needed.

    No I look at things pretty open minded, I'm just not educated enough on mountain bikes to see where the ups and downs are
    Turning, control, ease of use, comfort.
    Somewhere I read:
    "It doesn't get easier, you just go faster"


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  23. #23
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    Educated experienced help needed.

    How about some insight on bike brands, and some more suggestions at bikes around the 2k price range and why...


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  24. #24
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    Hi Charello, I just went through this and drove myself nuts! I ended up with a 2013 cannondale f29 1 alloy. Got it for $1700. Great bike and I Love to ride it. Its a hardtail lefty. You need to Ride and ride and ride till you find the one that feels GREAT to you. You will know when you ride "the one". When you find the one look at the best of that line you can afford. I am doing it again with a road bike. I am riding and if I like it I then research.

    If you buy online you will lose the whole shop thing. I fell and bent my derailer 15 minutes into riding my bike. Took it back to the shop. They after some good nurtured ribbing (they and my daughter talked me into clipless pedals) Took a bike off the stand and proceeded to fix mine at no charge! I got it from them and the other guy didn't.

    Have you looked at Jenson America if you are buying on line? They have some real good deals on last 2 model years bikes. Worth a look.

    Good Luck
    Ride Ride Ride!
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  25. #25
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    First thing first I agree with Nate!!! Definitely a rep worthy post, wish I can do it now

    2k is a lot of money for the first timer. Many turn away from our sport because of the sticker shock. I agree FS is the way to go. I'd stick with big brands like Giant(best value), Specialized, Cannondale, Santa Cruz, etc. Can you enjoy the sport on the cheapo HT, certainly! but do you need to, prolly not if you can afford it.

    Riding a well designed, and set up FS is almost like cheating. It offers more control buy absorbing bumps, expected or unexpected, and keep both tires on the ground. Big brands spend $$$ and time geeking out the best pivot or shock location for any given models. For example Santa Cruz was making a modified SinglePivot to mimic the VPP shock rate and curve and best provide maximum enjoyment for the riders who does not want to spend more on their VPP suspension system.

    When you shop for a FullSuspension bike designs and go visit their website, you'd find that most of them are geeking out of their design and what it can do for you, unless it's top of the line spec model you'd not find any of them boosting about what equipments they are putting on the bike merely a mention of a trim line, unless it's a specially design or OEM for their companies.

    BikeDirect is not for you just yet. Not til you know what you are buying, I'm saying each and every components not just some flashy parts put up to draw your attention. Only fools believe the BS that BD put on the platter. Why go thru the trouble of promoting the Shimano XTR DynaSys then provide a completely different crankset. Their spec list is full of crap. 11-28t cassette? You should be able to look at the page and know right away what you are getting and if it's even good deal. I know I can and Natehawk certainly can, can you? You know the joke about spotting the sucker?

    Best is to spend some real time and do the research and demo and look out for a good deal on used bike, but if you don't have the time or extra effort for the hideous task now, you can just buy the complete bike from the your local bike store and go from there. Do some homework, some LBS offer lifetime adjustment and tune ups, discount on accessories.

    Set some money aside for the necessities like Helmet, glove, riding shoes, hydration pack, pump, and multi-tool. You can go here to look up some of the info before you make the decision, we talked about several hot topics like buying from BD, clipless vs flats. http://forums.mtbr.com/groups/t-w-o-two-wheel-offroad/

    Make yourself at home, and have fun.

    Edit: Though I own many bikes, I'm still rocking the first generation Giant Reign that I built for less than 1K, it's still find the new way to put a smile on my face. There are plenty of good used bike you can have at great deals.

  26. #26
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    Educated experienced help needed.

    More great posts with more great insight. I'm gonna have to find a bike shop outside my area, mine is biased to Specialized, Felt and Marin and does not carry other brands


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  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shakester View Post
    I grew up road biking in the 80s and one of the prominent brands at that time was Motobecane.


    The Motobecane of the 80's is not the same company. In fact the only resemblance is name only.

  28. #28
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    Consider this. Still online and requires some home assembly but I think a better product than Bikes Direct with a very solid component group in this price range.

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  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Charello View Post
    More great posts with more great insight. I'm gonna have to find a bike shop outside my area, mine is biased to Specialized, Felt and Marin and does not carry other brands


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    Not much to add that Nate and Mimi didn't already cover (as usual, they'll have to wait for their rep). Just ride everything you can get your hands on, the bigger your pool to test the better your decision will become. Eventually you'll have to pick a bike, don't stress about getting the biggest bang for the buck, just pick whatever you like the most for whatever reason you choose. It doesn't matter why you pick a bike it only matters that you like riding it because in the end you're the one who has to live with the thing and the more you like the bike the more you'll ride it; and in the end the more you ride a bike the better a value that bike becomes.

    All manufacturers balance frame design and technology against the parts attached to the frame. For the big brands they typically sink more money into frame and rear suspension tech which means they put some lower end parts on there to offset the cost. The lesser brands will typically put less money into the frame and offset it with the flashy parts they put on it. At a given price point you'll almost always get an even value between bikes; some will have better parts and some will have better frames but the balance between the two will be of an equivalent value across the board; that is to say a $2000 bike is a bike with $2000 worth of stuff no matter what the frame is made out of, what fork is attached, or what the shifters are, or what BD claims the equivalent value is because they put an expensive rear derailleur on it (common trick with all manufacturers not just BD).

    It's so hard to go wrong choosing a major manufacturer at your price point, there's a lot of great options and they would all be a good choice. If you're going to keep this bike for a while then buying a bike with a good frame is a good plan. If you're sure about full suspension then buying a good frame should be paramount. If you're going to get a hardtail that you're using to test the waters of your commitment to the sport or to get a taste of what's appropriate for your local trails then there's nothing wrong with BD or Airborne so long as you know what size to buy and what you're actually purchasing (is it a twitchy race bike or an AM slayer?). The problem with online bike sales is that you have to know without riding the bike what that bike will ride like, for someone new to the sport this is a tall ask and for that reason I say the test ride is king.
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  30. #30
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    Educated experienced help needed.

    Thank you as well for the reply.
    After reading these posts over and over again, I am leaning more towards a FS bike from a known brand, for the sake of the frame alone. I figure as time goes on I could possibly upgrade here and there without unloading my pockets. I was also considering test riding some of the Marin bikes for instance to get the sizing right then perhaps order a 2013 model at a discounted price online and have the bike-shop do a once-over.
    This bike is in my price range and it looks like a good deal to me

    http://www.randombikeparts.com/colle...not-on-website


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  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Charello View Post
    Thank you as well for the reply.
    After reading these posts over and over again, I am leaning more towards a FS bike from a known brand, for the sake of the frame alone. I figure as time goes on I could possibly upgrade here and there without unloading my pockets. I was also considering test riding some of the Marin bikes for instance to get the sizing right then perhaps order a 2013 model at a discounted price online and have the bike-shop do a once-over.
    This bike is in my price range and it looks like a good deal to me

    2013 Marin RIFT ZONE XC8 19" Full Suspension 26" MTB Bike Shimano XT F | Random Bike Parts


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    Being from San Francisco, I absolutely love Marin bikes. A few of my first mountain bikes were Marins. The Rift Zone, for that price, is a pretty nice bike with a great set of components (XT and Fox CTD fork). But, 100mm of travel may limit you a little bit if you want that all around bike. I've rode down some gnarly trails with a 100mm travel bike and it got pretty sketchy. The Marin Mount Vision would probably better fit what you're looking for.

    2013 Marin Mount Vision XM8 Full Suspension MTB Bike 26" Shimano XT NE | Random Bike Parts

    If you're looking for a Felt, then you could also check out the Virtue 3 with 130mm of travel.

    Felt Virtue 3 2013

  32. #32
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    Educated experienced help needed.

    What am I missing here ? Are you referring to me ?


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  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Charello View Post
    What am I missing here ? Are you referring to me ?


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    ignore 247. he's a little...erratic.

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    Funny accusation he makes, considering that this might be the first post I've seen from 247 with no Trek shilling.
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  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by 247 (2) View Post
    snip...
    Do you wear your tin foil on the inside or the outside of your helmet? Does it interfere with the fit system?
    Don't you hate it when a sentence doesn't end the way you think it octopus?

  36. #36
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    Its all good charello. Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain!LOL Kinda keeps it interesting ya know! Did you figure out what you are doing yet?
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  37. #37
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    I would actually suggest sticking with a hardtail as your first bike. It is hard to find a bad hardtail, while it is easy to find a full-suspension bike that doesn't match your riding style (especially since you don't know what that is, yet)! A hardtail won't lead you to believe you are better than you are and delude you into doing something you are not nearly prepared for.

    Eventually, you will want full-suspension, and by then you will better understand what you are looking for. However, you will still never *not* want a hardtail! I get a big grin every time my buddy and I switch bikes and I get to feel that direct, responsive rear triangle efficiently putting the power right down into the dirt. He gets a grin out of how smooth and easy everything seems on my FS bike.

    So stick with a basic XC-ish hardtail bike with ~4" of travel. Since you have the budget, and seem hell-spent to spend all of it- a carbon frame would be a good investment.

    Insist on a quality air fork, at least XT-level drivetrain, and a good tubeless wheelset. With decent maintenance these components will perform reliably for years and years.

    Do not get XTR anything except for the chain. XTR is weaker and less durable than XT, only costing more because it is lighter.

    As far as wheel size... it's more of a personal choice, like saddles and tires.
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  38. #38
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    Educated experienced help needed.

    I appreciate all your guys input, wow, really a lot to digest. Tomorrow I will post what I have been looking at.
    Anyway, I don't make a lot of money, so I saved myself up 2k for a bike and I guess the reason why I'm being so selective is because I do not want to "outgrow" the bike as I won't be able to afford another one in the near future.
    (Could I pick up a bike with a great frame) and replace bits and pieces as I go? Is that more or less cost effective ?
    Also where can I learn about all this XT-level XTR stuff ?



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  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by Charello View Post
    I appreciate all your guys input, wow, really a lot to digest. Tomorrow I will post what I have been looking at.
    Anyway, I don't make a lot of money, so I saved myself up 2k for a bike and I guess the reason why I'm being so selective is because I do not want to "outgrow" the bike as I won't be able to afford another one in the near future.
    (Could I pick up a bike with a great frame) and replace bits and pieces as I go? Is that more or less cost effective ?
    Also where can I learn about all this XT-level XTR stuff ?



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    In the nutshell, this is how I figure; XTR performs about 10% better than XT at 100% more price, that's 't tell the dperformance. If you ride on flatter and less demanding trail and condition you can't tell the difference. They don't weight that much difference either. You can shift under higher load on XTR than on XT and ergonomic is better on XTR, on swipe can shift 3-4 gears up or down, on XT is less. Finally, let's face it, XTR is more bling. If you have extra cash burning holes in your pockets, why not. There's nothing wrong with having nice things.

    It's inevitable, you are gonna want to upgrade it's the nature of the sport don't even sweat it.

  40. #40
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    Oh Boy, I needs me a beer!!

    --But come on (it is soo funny)---dude is a company rep!!

    --AGAIN, do your thing (it is all good)---I do like the BD offerings (I even looked at them before)---

    I am just laughing soo hard at the blatant posts (and how you have manipulated the 247 #2 haters here...)

    --It is soo obvious.. but I figure that those who are letting me have it might also be in on 'the scam'!?!?!?

    Oh this made my day (in a good way)---and am going to have some great alcoholic drinks tomorrow (and get a smile about this post)---

    p.s. MAKE SURE you give everyone supporting this thread a 10-15% discount..... Had I had one I would have gotten a bikes direct bike (I ride this brand that Lance Armstrong and George Bush Jr. ride.......)

    --and NOT saying that is a good thing!?!?!?!? (not my bike though...)

  41. #41
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    Educated experienced help needed.

    242 you truly are delirious or more likely drunk.
    If you would like to call someone out then do it like a man and not some high school girl.
    Make a good point instead of some overalcoholized ramblings.
    I truly feel sorry for you.
    Not that I need to explain myself to you but I found this site and this forum the best way to inform myself, and ( minus your obnoxious comments) have gotten lots of helpful responses.
    242 if you don't care for the posts here look elsewhere.


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  42. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Charello View Post
    Good Morning,
    I will try to keep this short but have lot of questions.
    I am a MTB Newbie, I know that I do not know a lot about bikes.
    I am going to purchase a bike in the near future, but as of right now do not know exactly what I am looking for or what I "should" be looking for.
    I want a multi versatile bike. I think I would prefer full suspension over front suspension.
    Now, my bike budget is around $2K.
    I really like the bikes from (Felt, Specialized, Jamis, Scott) but they are also not very inexpensive.
    Okay folks don't lynch me now...but...
    I hear a lot of bad things about bikesdirect.com and I don't see what its based on. Is Motobecane junk because it does not say Felt etc. on it ??? I'm inexperienced but it does seem as though their bike come with forks, derailleurs, brakes etc found on higher end bikes.
    What am I missing here? And if you had $2K to spend on a new bike, which direction would you go and why ?
    Any help is appreciated, Thank you
    2011 large Giant Trance x2, Stans ZTR Crest Wheelset - Pinkbike

    Check it out. Lotta bike for small $$ I haven't read all the posts so good luck. Second hand is not always a bad thing. You could even claim the green card for recycling

    This bike is in Tallahassee, I would go and look at it. It is a large frame how big are you?

  43. #43
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    247, I really don't care all that much that the OP may be a clever shill. I'm more stuck on you're a dumbass.
    Sometimes, you need to go fast enough that the trail is a blur to find clarity. -- Wild Bill

  44. #44
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    Educated experienced help needed.

    Dude, you are unbelievable...
    Go check who has mentioned BD more, you or me...
    It was an honest question, and since some of the very early posts also have made it clear that it no longer was my intention to purchase a bike from there since I am beginning to understand what it is that I am looking at.
    It is people like you that ruin good experiences on forums such as these.
    Why instead of coming out here ranting about stuff that isn't true use all that insight you have and give me good advice on purchasing my first Bike ?
    And just for your info, I'm retired USAF, and have no affiliations with with any companies.


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  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by 247 (2) View Post
    Fake O.P. (BD Rep), you are not fooling me (like all the sheep here!)

    Yeah, firstly your use of 'repetitiveness' with making sure you spelled my name wrong (doing it twice)---look up what means (remember the I HAVE A DREAM SPEECH)

    Secondly, calling someone out like you did (Be a man saying things)---yeah, you went and read that 247 guys stuff on here (see he got banned, and hoping the same happens to me, WHO TOLD THE TRUTH ABOUT you and this thread!!!! though these peons have NO IDEA...

    Then you finish-up the comment buy (always) referring to the fact that (OH GOLLY GEE, A LOT of people did find this thread SO Helpful....)---OH PLEEEAAASSEEEEEE, STOP IT ALREADY!!!!

    p.s. And I like your choice of your new pic (the fighter pilot)---COME ON Y'ALL CAN'T you see this for what this is:

    SHENANIGANS 100% (look up the meaning of that word)---Dude JUST SIGNED UP, then always at post
    #11 when MTBR has its rules in place---THEY ALWAYS, EVERY 3 Months hit you with this SAME OLD, LETS GET A PLUG FOR BIKES DIRECT!!!!!!

    For anyone who cannot see this (SHAME ON YOU)---

    And all the haters of 247 #1 (look up the word propaganda)--and don't believe the hype on 247!!!

    --BECAUSE ALL MY HATER'S are the one's who's Favorite show is KEEPING UP WITH THE FAKE A-S-S Kardashians!!! YEAH, they are about as fake as this (but I think those who respond negatively to me, YOU ARE ALSO in on the scam, but you guys DO RIDE Trails when NOT working at Bikes Direct)---

    SO BIKE DIRECT O.P., No Bro, YOU BE A REAL MAN (Man Up and admit to this Scam you guys keep doing!!!) Oh my bad, then you would not have a job..... So I can't hate you for just doing your job (but these are dishonest posts to get FREE Advertising!!!)

    and by the way they thought that 247 guy worked for Magic Hat #9 (or TREK)--but dude spoke from the heart expressing his opinions (not this DISHONEST stuff here!!!!)---

    I would respect you if you actually had THE BALLS just to be truthful here (not dishonest with trying TO NOT have to pay MTBR for HONEST advertising)----OH WAIT, THAT IS HOW YOU KEEP YOUR PRICEPOINT THE LOWEST!?!?!? NOW IT ALL MAKES PERFECT SENSE!!!!
    And this, children, is why you don't do drugs.

    Any questions?

  46. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by Charello View Post
    ....snip....
    Charello - thx for serving. As far 247 goes, you'll want to add him to your 'ignore' list, unless you the type that likes to slow down to look at accidents.
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  47. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by Charello View Post
    ...
    (Could I pick up a bike with a great frame) and replace bits and pieces as I go? Is that more or less cost effective ?
    Also where can I learn about all this XT-level XTR stuff ?
    You could do this but in most situations it isn't cost effective. However it does spread the cost out over a larger amount of time and therefore may be seen as a form of cost effectiveness. Buying a complete bike will be less expensive than piecing together a bike with the same parts on it. The manufacturers negotiate bulk purchase prices so they can get things cheaper than you can. If you work really hard, buy older model stuff, and search the deals you could probably break even but it would be a lot of time spent and you may run into compatibility issues if you're not intimately familiar with what you're doing.

    I'd start your learning about XT and XTR or other levels by reading as much as you can. What do you want to know? I'll sum it up in general really quickly: As you go up in price you get better working pieces with more features that weigh less.

    This is a generalization and only accounts to parts up a certain level. XTR and X0 in some parts have a tendency to sacrifice weight for durability. Sometimes this matters and most times it doesn't. I have beat the living hell out of the XTR derailleur that came on my bike and it hasn't so much as flinched but if it broke I'd put an XT on it because of the price difference. For me, a non-racer and a person who rides a bike that already weighs 33ish lbs the extra few grams saved isn't worth the expense of a few bells and whistles that will trickle down to the XT level in a year or two.

    I speak mostly in Shimano as that has been my experience over the last 5 or so years, Sram also makes good products and their products are structured in a similar way as Shimano.
    Don't you hate it when a sentence doesn't end the way you think it octopus?

  48. #48
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    Here are some of the bikes I looked at and like:
    2012 Jamis Dakar AMT - $1900 on Jenson USA
    2013 Marin Rift Zone XC7 29er $1680 on Randombikeparts
    2013 Marin Rift Zone XC8 26er $2115 on Randombikeparts
    2013 Marin Rift Zone XC6 29er $1280 on Randombikeparts
    2013 Marin Mount Vision XM8 26er on Randombikeparts
    I feel like I want a FS Bike because I won’t be able to afford another “big Spend” anytime soon.
    So what I am hoping is to get a bike I can be happy with for years to come.
    In your guys opinion, what are the most crucial things to look at as far as where the money goes.
    Whats the take on 20 gears vs 30 ?
    I read a lot that says Newbies like I should stay away from FS I also read that I should definitely get a 29er…
    Our bike shop is small, but I will try to get over there today and ride a few.
    And thanks slapheadmofo, I took your advice

  49. #49
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    Zebrahum,
    I don't actually want to piece it together per say.
    What Im thinking is, if I Purchase a brand of bike that has a good reputation for their frame, and decent parts I should be okay. My feelings are if things get worn out and break I could replace them with something better. As far as parts go, right now I am more concerned with durability than weight.

  50. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by Charello View Post
    Here are some of the bikes I looked at and like:
    2012 Jamis Dakar AMT - $1900 on Jenson USA
    2013 Marin Rift Zone XC7 29er $1680 on Randombikeparts
    2013 Marin Rift Zone XC8 26er $2115 on Randombikeparts
    2013 Marin Rift Zone XC6 29er $1280 on Randombikeparts
    2013 Marin Mount Vision XM8 26er on Randombikeparts
    I feel like I want a FS Bike because I won’t be able to afford another “big Spend” anytime soon.
    So what I am hoping is to get a bike I can be happy with for years to come.
    In your guys opinion, what are the most crucial things to look at as far as where the money goes.
    Whats the take on 20 gears vs 30 ?
    I read a lot that says Newbies like I should stay away from FS I also read that I should definitely get a 29er…
    Our bike shop is small, but I will try to get over there today and ride a few.
    And thanks slapheadmofo, I took your advice
    First off, get the best bike for the amount you can afford.

    I got the Mount Vision XM7 from them. Its a fantastic deal for what you are getting. One of the best overall rear suspension designs, Great brakes, above average drivetrain, Dropper seatpost. Revelation Fork(amazing), Fox shock. I got it all for $1200.

    2x10 usually has nearly the same gear range as 3x10. I just changed my bike to 1x10 because that is all the range I need.

    I see no reason for a newbie to only get a hardtail or only get a 29er.

  51. #51
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    or how about...

    a Marin 29er HT
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Educated experienced help needed.-dsc01838.jpg  

    2014 Nail Trail 29...

  52. #52
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    "Excuse me, I speak troll"

    To take a page from elsewhere on the interwebz, I'll attempt to translate or provide explanation for you all:

    Quote Originally Posted by 247 (2) View Post
    Fake O.P. (BD Rep), you are not fooling me (like all the sheep here!)
    I have mastered the bold function of the forum: bow to me.

    Quote Originally Posted by 247
    Yeah, firstly your use of 'repetitiveness' with making sure you spelled my name wrong (doing it twice)---look up what means (remember the I HAVE A DREAM SPEECH)
    Translation: I have never read the "I have a dream" speech.

    Quote Originally Posted by 247
    Secondly, calling someone out like you did (Be a man saying things)---yeah, you went and read that 247 guys stuff on here (see he got banned, and hoping the same happens to me, WHO TOLD THE TRUTH ABOUT you and this thread!!!! though these peons have NO IDEA...
    Translation: I'm a misogynist, I can't spell, and why won't you people listen to me? I'm making perfect sense! What could possibly lead you people to not see through the OP's ruse? I quoted MLK up there!!! What else do you need?

    Quote Originally Posted by 247
    Then you finish-up the comment buy
    Translation: I can't spell

    Quote Originally Posted by 247
    (always) referring to the fact that (OH GOLLY GEE, A LOT of people did find this thread SO Helpful....)---OH PLEEEAAASSEEEEEE, STOP IT ALREADY!!!!
    Editor's note: why is always in parenthesis? Is it to be implied? Isn't that what brackets are for?

    Quote Originally Posted by 247
    p.s. And I like your choice of your new pic (the fighter pilot)---COME ON Y'ALL CAN'T you see this for what this is:
    A picture of a person in a jet? I can't wait to see where this one goes... Plus the lack of a question mark leads me to wonder if it was a question at all. Maybe it was a comment on society.

    Quote Originally Posted by 247
    SHENANIGANS 100% (look up the meaning of that word)---Dude JUST SIGNED UP, then always at post
    Nope, turns out it wasn't social commentary. Might have been an endorsement of the OP's diligence at their AF job: "always at post". That was nice.

    Quick reference: Shenanigan - high-spirited or mischievous activity —usually used in plural

    Quote Originally Posted by 247
    #11 when MTBR has its rules in place---THEY ALWAYS, EVERY 3 Months hit you with this SAME OLD, LETS GET A PLUG FOR BIKES DIRECT!!!!!!
    Editor's note: I'm actually at a loss here. So what I think is happening is that there is a rule where MTBR has to plug BD once ever 3 months. I'm not sure if this is meant as an indictment of MTBR's BD sock puppet management or a misunderstanding of how paid advertisement works. I'm sure it's not that second one.

    Quote Originally Posted by 247
    For anyone who cannot see this (SHAME ON YOU)---
    Editor's note: Now the guy is hating on the blind? What the hell is wrong with this person?

    Quote Originally Posted by 247
    And all the haters of 247 #1 (look up the word propaganda)--and don't believe the hype on 247!!!
    Quick reference: Propaganda - 1. capitalized : a congregation of the Roman curia having jurisdiction over missionary territories and related institutions. 2. the spreading of ideas, information, or rumor for the purpose of helping or injuring an institution, a cause, or a person.

    So clearly us haters should be a Roman curia having jurisdiction over missionary territories and releated institutions. Take t

    Obligatory: <iframe width="420" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/9vQaVIoEjOM" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

    Quote Originally Posted by 247
    --BECAUSE ALL MY HATER'S
    Translation: my caps lock button is acting up again and it seems to be affecting the apostrophe key now.

    Quote Originally Posted by 247
    are the one's
    Translation: Damn apostrophe button! I better shop amazon for a new keyboard. Damn it, I don't want an "Log'ite'ch"!! I quit, I'll just run it for now.

    Quote Originally Posted by 247
    who's
    hehehehe

    Quote Originally Posted by 247
    Favorite show is KEEPING UP WITH THE FAKE A-S-S Kardashians!!!
    Solid reference here despite the caps lock issue and the unnecessary hyphenation. Does the forum block ass? Ass ass ass ass ass ass ass. Did _ass_ just get written like 9 times just then?

    Quote Originally Posted by 247
    YEAH, they are about as fake as this
    Editor's note: Wait, what? You might want to consider easing up on the indefinite demonstratives. I think that you meant to say that all these haters are as fake as the Kardashians. See how easy that was? Well, it wasn't that easy; I had to look up the word for demonstrative because I didn't think that "that" was an article. Turns out it was not.

    Quote Originally Posted by 247
    (but I think those who respond negatively to me, YOU ARE ALSO in on the scam, but you guys DO RIDE Trails when NOT working at Bikes Direct)---
    Editor's note: 1. I respond negatively to a lot of people, you're not special. You're not even in the top 10 of special. 2. I'm not part of Bikes Direct, hell I've only been to Florida once and that was last month. 3. No one at MTBR rides bikes, we just talk about them online. Riding them requires prying ourselves away from our monitors and like that's ever going to happen!

    Quote Originally Posted by 247
    SO BIKE DIRECT O.P., No Bro, YOU BE A REAL MAN (Man Up and admit to this Scam you guys keep doing!!!) Oh my bad, then you would not have a job..... So I can't hate you for just doing your job (but these are dishonest posts to get FREE Advertising!!!)
    Translation: mew mew mew mew mew mew.

    Editor's note: I thought this would be more fun when I started, turns out I may have misjudged the length of the post. I'll just chuck in some cat sounds.

    Editor's editor's note (it's still just me, but don't tell anyone. Maybe I'll throw a 2 after my user name for these notes): Have you noticed the absolute lack of consistency of tone even across a single post? So there's some caps lock issues, some bolding of things in parenthesis, ellipsis abuse, and just no flow. Pick a ranting format and stick with it already!

    Quote Originally Posted by 247
    and by the way they thought that 247 guy worked for Magic Hat #9 (or TREK)--but dude spoke from the heart expressing his opinions (not this DISHONEST stuff here!!!!)-
    Translation: Let me lie in third person for a minute. I'm sick of all this pesky first person lying.

    Editor's note: Where did I miss the part where people thought you worked for a beer?

    Quote Originally Posted by 247
    --

    I would respect you if you actually had THE BALLS just to be truthful here (not dishonest with trying TO NOT have to pay MTBR for HONEST advertising)----OH WAIT, THAT IS HOW YOU KEEP YOUR PRICEPOINT THE LOWEST!?!?!? NOW IT ALL MAKES PERFECT SENSE!!!!
    Translation: I'll get back to lying in first person now. I'd never respect you.

    Editor's final note: This has got to be the weirdest marketing strategy Bikes Direct has ever employed; getting someone to flame a thread completely off topic and name drop a company like a thousand times. You know what they say: fortune favors the bold.
    Don't you hate it when a sentence doesn't end the way you think it octopus?

  53. #53
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    Educated experienced help needed.

    Wow, that was a lot if reading. Funny enough, I actually found it entertaining in the George Carlin sort of way.


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    Quote Originally Posted by zebrahum View Post
    Obligatory: <iframe width="420" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/9vQaVIoEjOM" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>
    Chuck D is The Man.

    OP - as far as people saying 'beginners should never buy FS' or
    'everyone should be riding a 29er' - anytime anybody speaks in absolutes like that, I would consider their advice suspect; it's a pretty strong indication that they have limited experience and/or a narrow perspective.

    Personally, if you can afford to get a decent quality FS (which if you go used or possibly left-over, you can) and you think that's what you'd prefer, go for it. I've got a lot of experience on all sorts of bikes, and for trail riding, I strongly prefer FS myself. The whole "you have to learn on a HT or you'll never really learn to ride' is an utter load of BS. There are so many people out there that learned to ride dirt on FS bikes that are better riders than the old school 'purist' guys that insist everyone should pay penance beating themselves up on a hardtail for years, it's not even funny. You want to ride what seems like the most fun to YOU, screw what anybody else says you 'have' to have. Usually (not always), they're just pushing whatever they themselves bought.
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  55. #55
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    Charello, don't sweat too many details. At your stage, just get on some bikes and ride them. For Shimano, anything Deore level and up (Deore, SLX, XT, XTR) is good stuff. It should last awhile so long as it doesn't get broken. Having ridden awhile, I have a few particular preferences (like the one for XT cassettes), but those were formed after years of using others, too, that worked just fine. For SRAM, anything X7 and better (X7, X9, X0, X01, XX, XX1) works well and should last awhile. You WILL find, however, that a lot of folks are not big fans of SRAM/Avid hydraulic disc brakes (Elixir, Juicy, etc models). Shimano does disc brakes better right now. It's not that Avids don't work. They're just noisy and annoying.

    My bike has a mix of Shimano stuff on it. Some XT and some SLX. Even a couple of old LX parts still in operation after 11 years of use (LX was replaced by SLX a few years back. LX is back now, but is a "trekking/touring/tandem" bike component group, not mtb).

    Drivetrain parts aren't a big deal. They can generally be replaced easily enough. Some of them wear out more quickly than others. Some tend to be prone to breaking in crashes, like rear derailleurs. Things like cranksets don't generally break or wear out. Just as long as you have replaceable chainrings so you can replace them when they wear out, and as long as you have a pretty durable and functional bottom bracket that can be replaced easily enough when it also wears out, you'll be fine.

    Bigger things to get right tend to be suspension. Suspension can be replaced easily, but the good stuff is just expensive. Same with wheels. It's better to start with something nice and not have to worry about spending a bunch of money to replace it later. These parts SHOULDN'T break or wear out quickly, but some suspension with QC troubles can be problematic. That tends to vary from year to year. In the past, Manitou and Rock Shox have had their troubles. Fox seems to be having some of their own recently. It's just the way the cookie crumbles. FWIW, both my bike and my wife's bike are running Fox forks and rear shocks. Mine dates from 2003-ish, when Fox was awesome and really hitting their stride. My wife's dates from 2010, which seems to be when people were starting to have trouble with Fox on occasion. She's a light, non-aggressive rider, though, so it's not really a problem. The more aggressive of a rider you are, the more likely you are to have trouble with your suspension, and you should be careful that you're not beating the piss out of XC bits if you ride dirt jumps or doing downhill runs or whatever.

    Being a new rider, you're going to start on XC stuff. Where you go from there just depends on what you wind up liking and will shape your product choices in the future.

  56. #56
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    Educated experienced help needed.

    Thanks Nate,
    What would you suggest I should focus in on when buying a bike in order ?
    Frame - shocks - Wheels - derailleurs ...shifters ?
    What are the more and less important parts...


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    Educated experienced help needed.

    Slapheadmofo
    I have found a few Marin FS bikes, below my price range, I have heard a lot of good stuff about their suspension setup.
    And, from what I gather their parts and pieces seem decent enough for me as well.
    This ought to be a pretty good starting platform.


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  58. #58
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    N.m.

  59. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by Charello View Post
    Thanks Nate,
    What would you suggest I should focus in on when buying a bike in order ?
    Frame - shocks - Wheels - derailleurs ...shifters ?
    What are the more and less important parts...


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    It depends on your goals, but that's close.

    If I was BUILDING a bike from the ground up with complete freedom to choose all of the parts individually, my list would be something like:
    frame - wheels - suspension - drivetrain (shifters are included here, but generally speaking, better shifters offer more performance gains than a better derailleur. shifters are kinda expensive, and have a lower incidence of breaking in a crash, but because they are less flashy, a lot of manufacturers will give you lower end shifters and a higher end rear derailleur. I'd rather have it the other way around.) I would also generally put brakes above the drivetrain, but only to a point. There becomes a point where slightly better brakes matter less than slightly better drivetrain.

    but understanding how bikes are assembled from the manufacturers, that the less flashy parts are going to be less expensive ones, regardless of the fact that many of the less flashy parts affect performance more, your priority list probably makes more sense for off-the-sales-floor bikes.

    My bike initially came off the sales floor as a complete bike, so I had to make choices. I had settled on the Specialized Stumpjumper FSR and the shop had a few models available. I chose the model with lower end brakes because it had higher end suspension. And then shortly after I bought it, I upgraded the brakes to what I wanted. The shop did not have any models with both the better brakes AND the better suspension. My choices were one or the other.

    My wife's bike was purchased used but was built from the ground up by a racer. Everything was very high end. At that point, it mattered less the specific brand/model of each component and was really just more important that all of the parts were very high end and in pretty good shape.

  60. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by Charello View Post
    Thanks Nate,
    What would you suggest I should focus in on when buying a bike in order ?
    Frame - shocks - Wheels - derailleurs ...shifters ?
    What are the more and less important parts...


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    Fit, fun. That is all. You'll find a bike that you like more than others, pick that one.
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  61. #61
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    Check out Pink Bike buy and sell

    You will get much more for your money second hand, and if you can find something you can go look at you might find a great bike for $2000
    Check out this one.

    in Miami, Florida, United States - photo by frankboffi - Pinkbike
    an other few.
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    I you go to the top left of the page you can tunnel down to any city or state near you. So you can go have a look at the bike
    Used XC/All Mountain Bikes - Page 1 - Pinkbike Buy&Sell

    How tall are you?

  62. #62
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    Educated experienced help needed.

    I like that site


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    Don't need but 2x10 . I was worried about that when I got my lefty. Hey I am easily confused!! It works Flawlessly! I agree Get all you can for what you can swing!Mine has X9 and they are Way better than I was looking at. Just took some looking. Doing it with road bike now. Tired of sitting cause the trails are wet! Should ride all that you can to see what you like. That makes the decision much easier. I am testing about 15 road bikes at 6 different shops. Also keeping a log of all the rides.
    Keep looking!
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    BTW:Zebrahum that is some funny stuff! I cracked up!
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  64. #64
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    [QUOTE=RiskEverything;11046623]I would actually suggest sticking with a hardtail as your first bike. It is hard to find a bad hardtail, while it is easy to find a full-suspension bike that doesn't match your riding style (especially since you don't know what that is, yet)! A hardtail won't lead you to believe you are better than you are and delude you into doing something you are not nearly prepared for.

    QUOTE]

    That's a very insightful post. Awesome

    Quote Originally Posted by zebrahum View Post
    "Excuse me, I speak troll"

    To take a page from elsewhere on the interwebz, I'll attempt to translate or provide explanation for you all:
    LOL, I just though the guy was on drugs.

  65. #65
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    Educated experienced help needed.

    Okay... So I have been doing research and I like all the Giant Trance / Anthems below $3000
    What's your take on these models ?



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    I'm 100% convinced with the value brands these days: motobecane, sette, chinese carbon frame, fuji, airborne etc. Also, used value brand gives you teh best value period on ebay.

    check out the motobecane subforum for user reviews.

    I work on my own bikes, and I rode my motobecane a bunch before it was stolen, and it was by far the most reliable bike in my riding group.
    1. I was the lightest guy in the group,
    2. vast majority of part failures were components not frame. The only frame failure was a trek carbon frame.

    You tend to get better components / $ on the value frame brands and therefor a better bike since components > frame imo.

    I would look around for deals. and compare which value brand gives you the best parts


    Here's my copy pasta general hierarchy of parts
    Shifters Derailleurs + shifters:
    from least < best
    Sram: x3 < x5 < x7 < x9 < xo
    Shimano: acera < alivio < deore < deore lx/slx < deore xt < deore xtr
    in terms of shimano vs sram, x9 < xt < xo

    XC (Cross country) shocks
    from least < best
    Suntour base models < rockshox dart 1=2=3 < rockshox tora < suntour epicon =rockshox recon < manitou tower/minute elite < rockshox reba = manitou tower pro (29er)/minute (26er) pro < fox
    *tower/minute has a lot of lovers in the shocks forums. They appear to be less popular than rockshox/fox because they dont’ come as foften equipped on new bikes. read more here https://www.google.com/search?sugexp...-suspension%2F

    Brakes Disc
    from least < best
    mechanical: tektro < avid bb5 < avid bb7
    hydraulic: tektro < avid elixir 1 < avid elixir 3 < avid elixir 5 = hayes stroker trail < deore/deore xt (2012 or newer)

  67. #67
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    Unfortunately most people who rides motobecane does not ride other brands especially when it comes to full suspension bikes, so reading user's reviews on motobecane sub forum would not help you much. I don't even bother with a few magazine reviews.

    Buying any full suspension aside from getting the right travel and geometry, the most important is the frame. Everything else is not as important because while it's would certainly enhance the ride quality with better components but nothing comes close to the ride of better frame.

    I have a few bikes in my stable that started out as a 25lbs xtr/xo components and it rides great. Once the new members were added I move the parts to the new bikes and put SLX/XT one the bike as well as the bike still ride as great.

    Weight is not an issue anymore nowadays, ride quality and performance is definitely trumps a few ounces or pounds difference. I intentionally "added" over 2 lbs drivetrain(Hammerschmidt) to my xc titanium bike seven duo and the performance increase override the increase weight.

    Giant maestro suspension design is pretty much one of the best value on the market today and their bike frame technology is at or near the top of the industry. Your decision would be: do you want a race inspired xc bike, Anthem, or do more things trail bike, trance. Then the next question is: do you want a big wheel, with added stability or fun fun fun, 26er wheel size. Though I admit I'm quite impressed with the anthem 29er and have not tried the trance 29er yet.

  68. #68
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    Educated experienced help needed.

    Thanks Mimi, that was quite insightful. Right now, and due to the cost, I would really love to get as close to a "do it all bike" I can under 3K. Leaning heavily towards the 2014 Trance x 29er 1. The Anthem is right behind.


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    One bike go with longer travel trance. 3k is plenty for trance. I would not consider the anthem, it would be too single purpose. Check if there's a demo day in your area or nearby, try both 26 and 29 on the trail. In the nutshell, 29er makes you lazy, you don't move much to get traction, not as much fun as 26. 27.5(650b) is a good compromise.

  70. #70
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    Educated experienced help needed.

    I do like the trance
    27.5 3, but it seems a downgrade in components. I'd take the 27.5 1 but at $3500 a bit out of my price range.


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    Personally I wouldn't dump $2k on a bike as a beginner unless you have a roadie/moto background and know what you want to do, and be competitive at it (not necessarily racing, but keeping up with fast guys.)

    The reason being, you're going to go out and spend money on a a bike that is far above your skill level, (not a bad thing), or the wrong type for what you end up enjoying (bad thing). You might spend the money on a light stiff fast bike and realize you like bombing downhills, or vice versa, and trade or sell it for something else. The problem is, bikes don't hold value, and by the time you are riding $2,000 bike to it's potential starting as a new rider, it will be old tech and worth about $500.

    IMO, you're better off buying a $500-$700 hardtail (new or used) with a decent fork and disc brakes (so you can upgrade to BB7's easily if you want to). The bike will do everything within your skill level fairly well and allow you to figure out what you really want to do. Then when you get to the point that the bike is starting to hold you back, sell it for $300-$400 (not losing much for a couple years worth of riding), and buy a significantly newer, higher tech, tailored to your style bike for $2,000. Or keep the hardtail and turn it into a single speed, commuter, spare bike, or whatever. You won't have much to lose.

  72. #72
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    Well charello, I really do have fun on my 29er! They will really roll and over most anything! But is all personal preference. Go out and RIDE these things!
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  73. #73
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    Just want to back up pretty much everything mimi said,as well as Nate earlier. Good input.

    For me personally, the frame is also by far the most important consideration, particularly with FS bikes and the endless options there, followed closely by the fork and shock along with spending the time to dial them in. Brakes would probably be top of the rest of the heap, the rest is is pretty much academic for the most part once you get above mid-level.

    As a great man once said:

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  74. #74
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    Educated experienced help needed.

    Lol rog


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    Weight is not an issue anymore nowadays, ride quality and performance is definitely trumps a few ounces or pounds difference. I intentionally "added" over 2 lbs drivetrain(Hammerschmidt) to my xc titanium bike seven duo and the performance increase override the increase weight.
    This is just opinion. And wrong imo.
    The majority of the bikes in pro XC races are hardtails. Why?, because weight savings. Ignore any difference between full suspension bikes. Weight is huge. It may not be huge for you personally, but it's a driving factor in biking innovation and engineering.

    Frames do make a larger difference in FS than HT. HT fits my type of riding and trails better than FS, but here are some other riders who are convinced of value buying FS frames. I think it's evident in the posts these people are experienced. Dual Suspension Chinese Carbon 29er


    Many components are very impactful on how a bike rides, not just the frame. If your newbie, and are convinced that frame difference > component difference; I encourage you to do some some further reading around this forum eg brakes, suspension and wheels subforum before you decide.

    In my (and some others) opinion, the number one impact on the feel of the bike is Tires.

    Unfortunately most people who rides motobecane does not ride other brands especially when it comes to full suspension bikes, so reading user's reviews on motobecane sub forum would not help you much. I don't even bother with a few magazine reviews.
    This is true, Most have not, but there are people who've ridden bikes from the big manufacturers, but the flip side to this is most people who ride non-Value higher markup bikes haven't tried value brands.

  76. #76
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    I know that you are not in this area, but Norco has a pretty good setup especially for the price right now.
    Norco Fluid 7.1 - thisBikeLife -Spokane, Washington
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  77. #77
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    Quote Originally Posted by bob13bob View Post
    This is just opinion. And wrong imo.
    The majority of the bikes in pro XC races are hardtails. Why?, because weight savings. Ignore any difference between full suspension bikes. Weight is huge. It may not be huge for you personally, but it's a driving factor in biking innovation and engineering.


    ...but the flip side to this is most people who ride non-Value higher markup bikes haven't tried value brands.
    One of the most common thing to do when encounter a new bike weather it's your friends or at the lbs is to lift it up and feel how much the bike weight and judge the bike from there. If you are a racer well you pick not only the bike that suit the course, you'd picked the components as well and not necessary stick with the lightest choices all the time.

    Full Suspension bikes are more efficient than HT even with some weight gain.

    Light weight components push the envelop, yes but if you have 2500 or 3000 to spend on a bike choose performance over light weight everyday, twice on Sunday Can you get the same performance at the same weight by putting light weight/ high performance components on, oh yeah sure, but it would blow the budget by a few grands easily.

    Fat knobby tires is heavier than skinny low thread tires but it provide comfort and traction which build confidence. Same goes to the adjustable post add one pound but descend with much more confidence than light weight carbon fix post any day.

    The easiest and the fastest way to drop 2-3+lbs is to put the maxlite 310g tires on your bike. It would be very light but pretty useless on the trail.MaxxLite 310 | Maxxis USA. Next sensible thing to do is to convert to tubeless and drop 1-1.5 lbs.

    As for testing the Motobecane FS, it's my life's mission I do that every chance I get. If it's a group ride and some noob(similar size) ride one I'd strike a conversation and ask for a switch. I get to do it quite a few times a year. The common responses were it's not the same as the big brands. I don't know of many people who bought a giant, or ibis and then get Motobecane FS as a second bike. It just does not happen.

    One common theme of the MB FS owners is that their bikes are not properly set up for them. Most of the fork are not properly sagged, on purpose, mind you. The common answer, I want to save the travel for the trail not sag, so less sag more usable travel Clearly, something is wrong here.

  78. #78
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    Quote Originally Posted by bob13bob View Post
    This is just opinion. And wrong imo.
    The majority of the bikes in pro XC races are hardtails.
    ...and the majority or riders are not pro XC racers (or any sort of racer for that matter). Just like wouldn't want to commute in F1 racer, most people will find that there are much more important considerations when choosing a bike than what matters works for high level XC racers, particularly when a large percentage of the courses they ride are about as technically challenging as my driveway.

    Components come and go, and are easily swapped out over time. Drivetrain stuff in particular is almost of no concern when looking at a new bike spec - performance difference between levels is much,much less than people tend to make it out to be.
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  79. #79
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    Quote Originally Posted by bob13bob View Post
    This is just opinion. And wrong imo.
    The majority of the bikes in pro XC races are hardtails. Why?, because weight savings. Ignore any difference between full suspension bikes. Weight is huge. It may not be huge for you personally, but it's a driving factor in biking innovation and engineering.

    Frames do make a larger difference in FS than HT. HT fits my type of riding and trails better than FS, but here are some other riders who are convinced of value buying FS frames. I think it's evident in the posts these people are experienced. Dual Suspension Chinese Carbon 29er


    Many components are very impactful on how a bike rides, not just the frame. If your newbie, and are convinced that frame difference > component difference; I encourage you to do some some further reading around this forum eg brakes, suspension and wheels subforum before you decide.

    In my (and some others) opinion, the number one impact on the feel of the bike is Tires.

    This is true, Most have not, but there are people who've ridden bikes from the big manufacturers, but the flip side to this is most people who ride non-Value higher markup bikes haven't tried value brands.
    You make some good points here, and miss the point elsewhere.

    As already stated, most riders are not racers. The weight weenie days of the 90's are long gone. Failures were big problems back then because manufacturers kept pushing the edge of the light weight limits and were not doing sufficient failure testing before shipping product. Drilled CNC aluminum was huge. Riders started sacrificing weight for durability after that decade. Riding styles got more aggressive as suspension tech improved. In the 90's, EVERYBODY wanted a sub-25lb hardtail race bike. Now, people want 30lb AM do-it-all bikes. Where I live, most riders actually purchase neither (and I'd wager that's the case in most places). Most purchase 29er hardtails in the upper-20lb to low 30lb weight range because they have budgets. They'd love a lighter bike, or a full suspension bike, but can't afford it so they ride what they've got. Weight hardly enters the equation at all. That doesn't mean the weight weenie stuff still isn't out there for those so inclined, or that the weight weenie segment doesn't drive innovation at a certain level, but people have learned that there are limits, and they do more product testing than they used to do.

    Suspension design makes a huge difference for FS. Ride quality is heavily impacted by pivot locations and shock tuning. The better suspension designs are proprietary, for the most part, so you're not going to find value brands making use of them. They are going to use older designs that will not ride as well in general and ride quality will be more heavily dependent on shock tuning. The bigger brands spend time identifying the shock tuning that works pretty well on their frames, though you can pay more to get a shock tuned specifically FOR YOU on that frame (PUSH). Buy a value frame and getting the right shock tune is going to be more of a PITA, and it will be even more important to get a shock specifically tuned for you and the bike. If there's one thing I learned in that thread about the chinese FS 29er frame is that they leave a LOT up to you.

    I also think you are missing the point regarding your markup comment. Markup (business) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia Profit margin - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia I take that to mean that the wholesale price includes the costs of lubing the pivots, R&D of better suspension designs, identify and source necessary parts that are not included, time spent to identify proper shock tuning, things that the buyers needed to handle on their own regarding the mentioned chinese fs 29er, and which buyers do NOT need to do when purchasing something from their LBS. Honestly, those are not things that I care to do for a bike frame that I purchase already made. Businesses do not typically differ by a lot in their profit margins. Differences only tend to show up when you're talking about volume purchasing vs. singles. Sellers will typically take a smaller margin per item when they sell many because the absolute dollar amount of the profits are high enough. I would suppose that Hong Fu probably makes a similar profit margin on selling a single frame to one of us as Trek or Specialized does when they sell a frame.

    Now that doesn't mean that there's no difference in selling price, but that means that there are additional costs wrapped into the selling price and some of those additional costs allow for improvements of the end products, while others allow for improvements in service, support, and delivery. Whether you care about those improvements is another story altogether. Sometimes I don't care about them. But sometimes I do.

    I don't have a problem with value brands that are up-front about their products. I DO have a problem when the marketing of value brands veers into "shady" and some of them go there. I really like On-One as a value brand. They're doing cool stuff, and they even manage to innovate. They also do some higher end stuff. Surly, to some extent, is a value brand. They're a value because they make stuff with pretty basic cromoly steel to keep costs down, but their innovation does add some cost so they're not the cheapest value brand by any stretch. They manage to innovate and also produce cool no-nonsense bikes and useful accessories. Airborne is a pretty good value brand. Maybe not as cool as when they were a value Ti brand back in the day, but they're selling some solid bikes these days. Bikes Direct is solidly in the "shady marketing" category. Their marketing is squarely targeted at making people think they're getting something they're not. The bikes they sell aren't bad, but they aren't what BD tries to make you believe.

  80. #80
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    Quote Originally Posted by NateHawk View Post
    ...Maybe not as cool as when they were a value Ti brand back in the day...
    A buddy of mine bought one of those, years ago obviously. The welds looked like they were made by monkeys and the rear end was well out of line. Dunno about the stuff they sell these days, but after that, I'm pretty much all set with on-line cheapy route myself. I want to inspect and ride anything I'm going to buy firsthand.
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    Full Suspension bikes are more efficient than HT even with some weight gain.
    This just isn't true (at least for all courses). If it were, pros who ride free money is no object bikes would not be riding HT. I totally buy the argument that rougher longer courses may be better with FS; which pro XC is not. I also agree that vast majority or riders are not racers; and they should ride what feels good for them. My point about "pros on HT", is: even though FS descends quicker, beats you up less, corners faster. Pros still right HT because they are lighter. Weight is important.

    Light weight components push the envelop, yes but if you have 2500 or 3000 to spend on a bike choose performance over light weight everyday, twice on Sunday Can you get the same performance at the same weight by putting light weight/ high performance components on, oh yeah sure, but it would blow the budget by a few grands easily.

    Fat knobby tires is heavier than skinny low thread tires but it provide comfort and traction which build confidence. Same goes to the adjustable post add one pound but descend with much more confidence than light weight carbon fix post any day.
    I mostly agree. With experience and experimentation you learn where its worth to spend $$, and where to spend grams. Much of this is personal preference.

    Tires. sub 350 gram tires are just too light and not worth the weight savings. In my experience tires make huge difference and I buy the best. My tires cost more than my frame (hardtail).

    Dropper post (all though cost/mile tend to very high since they don't usually last). not worth the weight for me for my riding. I'm in the minority here as most people love em calling em bike crack.).

    Cranks. the $$ carbon ones are lighter, but I tend to bang them up alot. Not worth the money or added fragility for me personally. Ill take quality metal but not quite as light.

    etc. etc.

    Frames vs components is our disagreement.
    At any price tier, when you pay for a main brand frame, you are getting lower tier components compared to value brands. This is fact. It's easy to prove because the product tiers come from the product manufacturer's themselves.

    Some believe that main brand frames are better quality, better engineering, quality control, etc and worth the lower tier components. Some, like myself, do not. I believe i'm getting more value because of no LBS overhead, very little marketing, no team sponsorship, less modern looking frames, perhaps IP ripoff from the Chinese carbon guys.

    One common theme of the MB FS owners is that their bikes are not properly set up for them. Most of the fork are not properly sagged, on purpose, mind you. The common answer, I want to save the travel for the trail not sag, so less sag more usable travel Clearly, something is wrong here
    In my experience, most bike owners are not properly setup period. The sad part is LBS will tend to not do this unless you pay for the "pro fit" package or they have high profit margins are you otherwise eg you buy high markup bikes from them, or you many lots of bikes from them. Nobody a bike more personally dialed in than the people who build it themselves.

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    ...and the majority or riders are not pro XC racers (or any sort of racer for that matter). Just like wouldn't want to commute in F1 racer, most people will find that there are much more important considerations when choosing a bike than what matters works for high level XC racers, particularly when a large percentage of the courses they ride are about as technically challenging as my driveway.
    I'm referring to their expert knowledge. We shouldn't all copy a pro bike. But It's important to know hardtails are better than FS for some application regardless of cost.

    F1 vs commuter are engineered for two very different courses. A lot of regular XC trail riding is actually pretty similar to XC racing. It's done on the same trails.

    Components come and go, and are easily swapped out over time. Drivetrain stuff in particular is almost of no concern when looking at a new bike spec - performance difference between levels is much,much less than people tend to make it out to be.
    Very true. If there is one takeway to beginners. Bikes aren't fast, riders are. If i put the fastest guy in my group on a wally world bike, he'd still be MUCH faster than me. Bikes make a difference, but not as much as saddle time. Taking the time to properly fit your bike to you (or pay lots), and maintain is >> than component or frame differences.
    Last edited by bob13bob; 03-21-2014 at 12:55 PM.

  83. #83
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    Quote Originally Posted by bob13bob View Post
    I'm referring to their expert knowledge. We shouldn't all copy a pro bike. But It's important to know hardtails are better than FS for some application irregardless of cost.

    F1 vs commuter are engineered for two very different courses. A lot of regular XC trail riding is actually pretty similar to XC racing. It's done on the same trails.

    Very true. If there is one takeway to beginners. Bikes aren't fast, riders are. If i put the fastest guy in my group on a wally world bike, he'd still be MUCH faster than me. Bikes make a difference, but not as much as saddle time. Taking the time to properly fit your bike to you (or pay lots), and maintain is >> than component or frame differences.
    I like hartails for certain things myself; I rode one almost daily for ~10 years and countless miles, and still have a number of them. They are great for certain applications and riding styles. But you've also got to remember, a huge segment of the riding population doesn't give a rats ass about who's fastest or what bike is most efficient. We're out there to have fun, period. And riding a stiff, lightweight, steep, fragile, big-wheeled hardtail is not at all conducive to many riders' idea of fun. Lots of us would much rather learn to throw a pretty whip or nice flat tabletop, or even just plod along through a bunch of good old un-crowded rocky technical trail, or maybe grab the dog and a few beers and head out for a nice long cruise along some water, than seek out crowds of stressed out racers and pay money to ride nut-to-butts with them all day.

    Trying to be 'fast' is just one of many, many niche ways to enjoy the sport and I think you'll find that in general, the longer someone has been playing the game, the less important it gets. Same goes for the over-emphaisis on bike weight (MTBR has long been in a bit of time-warp re: this IME). I really do think if more beginners were able to start riding on a decent 'trail'-style FS bike, they would ride more and their overall skill level would advance more quickly. All I know is that even with all the experience I have on HTs, most of the time I'm on one, I'm wishing I was on my bigger, heavier, slacker FS. If I ever decide to track how far/fast I went for the first time in my life, I'd probably find that I am a little faster on the HT, but I'd chalk that up to wanting to get the hell off it ASAP.

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    I'm not saying HT > FS. It depends on your riding style and type of riding you do. There are tons of threads that address HT vs FS. I bring it up because I disagree with any universal FS > HT or weight is not important statements.

    This thread is mostly about whether value brands truly better value.

    Businesses do not typically differ by a lot in their profit margins. Differences only tend to show up when you're talking about volume purchasing vs. singles. Sellers will typically take a smaller margin per item when they sell many because the absolute dollar amount of the profits are high enough. I would suppose that Hong Fu probably makes a similar profit margin on selling a single frame to one of us as Trek or Specialized does when they sell a frame.
    I don't believe this. One of these sources have a lot more middlemen and overhead. One pays for a sexy website, PR spokemen, marketing and advertising budgets, sponsorships, cuts in LBS man, cost to LBS space. One does not. You could argue that economies of scale of big manufacturer's overcome their superfluous spending which allows them to spend a higher ratio of the price on RND and Manufacturing. I do not believe that.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mimi1885 View Post

    Full Suspension bikes are more efficient than HT even with some weight gain.
    Quote Originally Posted by bob13bob View Post
    This just isn't true (at least for all courses). If it were, pros who ride free money is no object bikes would not be riding HT. I totally buy the argument that rougher longer courses may be better with FS; which pro XC is not. I also agree that vast majority or riders are not racers; and they should ride what feels good for them. My point about "pros on HT", is: even though FS descends quicker, beats you up less, corners faster. Pros still right HT because they are lighter. Weight is important.

    That's a misconception. Full Suspension is more efficient than HT. The front and rear shock absorb the bumps and keeps the rider level over bumps and rough terrains, unlike HT that transfer the bumps to a momentum killing vertical movement.

    So then why pros use or prefers HT? First of all different pros have different reason but a there are few main reasons. XC Race courses are pretty well manicured, most rough sections are bite-size they can certainly get away with using 29ers(main reason why pros ride 29ers). They are skilled enough to unweighted the rear keeping the momentum going.

    Another important reason even more than light weight is feel. HT offer the perception not actual of the ability to deliver the pedaling power to the ground moving them forward. Psychological aspect of the sport plays very important role here, HT can help pump the riders up keep them motivated because of the solid "feel" of power transfer at the rear wheel. It has nothing to do with what actually happens. Sammy Sosa used cork filled bat to set the homerun record, when it turned out that corked bat hit shorter than regulation bat, the point is if they think they have the advantage it's enough to boost their ability.

    It takes sometime to transition from HT to FS but once you do it correctly you don't feel any less efficient. Most if not all of my FS feel plenty firm when pedaling, yet when I'm on my HT on a long climb if I can find the serge of power I usually pump up enough to attack the climb. It's an effective tool but has nothing to do with being efficient.

    Quote Originally Posted by bob13bob View Post
    Dropper post (all though cost/mile tend to very high since they don't usually last). not worth the weight for me for my riding. I'm in the minority here as most people love em calling em bike crack.).
    YMMV, there are a few case of defects, bad batches, and poor quality posts, but it's much better now. That said the forum is filled with people repeating what actually happens. Out of 10 posted may be only one or two actually own the products the rest just adding to the fire. I own 7 posts and I have a problem with 2 and the problem were fixed and that's that. I have been a user right before the Hydro post hit the market, best thing since sliced bread



    Quote Originally Posted by bob13bob View Post
    Frames vs components is our disagreement.
    At any price tier, when you pay for a main brand frame, you are getting lower tier components compared to value brands. This is fact. It's easy to prove because the product tiers come from the product manufacturer's themselves.

    Some believe that main brand frames are better quality, better engineering, quality control, etc and worth the lower tier components. Some, like myself, do not. I believe i'm getting more value because of no LBS overhead, very little marketing, no team sponsorship, less modern looking frames, perhaps IP ripoff from the Chinese carbon guys.

    In my experience, most bike owners are not properly setup period. The sad part is LBS will tend to not do this unless you pay for the "pro fit" package or they have high profit margins are you otherwise eg you buy high markup bikes from them, or you many lots of bikes from them.
    Different people would view this differently. I spent close 4k on a custom ti frame and I thought it was money well spent. I was treated very well, learn a lot, any questions answered quickly, issue with the frame(if any) will be handled quickly and lifetime warranty. That's what you pay for service, craftsmanship, and quality product, not just materials. I got the same level of treatment when I bought $1500 steel frame mtb and road.

    Big box brands can sell the bike to you cheap because they knocked off the design of the big brands and do it poorly too, I might add. Then they buy overstock/overrun components, something with catchy enough name then go to work on the spec. BD's ad on XTR equipped bike would only have 2 may be 3 XTR parts the rest would be some cheap irrelevant parts to the XTR spec. They are counting on noobs not knowing any better and hoping that the only thing that sticks in the customer's mind is XTR, RockShox, and Avid brakes. The rest of the build is just junks. They think they got value but when in fact they get exactly what they pay for, exactly. It's not even worth taking apart all of the parts and sell it one by one to recoup the money because you won't get nearly what you pay for back even for an unused parts. New suckers born everday, and they are counting on that.

    Quote Originally Posted by bob13bob View Post

    Nobody's bike more personally dialed in than the people who build it themselves.
    Now this is not true. Nobody's bike is more dialed in than the people who knows how to dial in the bike. It's a whole sets of skill to be able to dial in the ride. Building the bike is easy, while learning curve can be a bit steep but achievable. Dialing in a ride you have to know what feels right, that's only happens in one of 2 ways, one;thru trials and errors, and two; someone is showing you how. It can't be taught but you can certainly learn it.
    Last edited by mimi1885; 03-21-2014 at 02:51 PM.

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    Educated experienced help needed.

    Wow, very interesting stuff here and a bit overwhelming.
    But then again I guess I asked for guidance and I got more than I can handle. This turned out to be more complex then I had imagined.
    I don't have the money to buy multiple bikes so my thought is if I get a HT, eventually I will want a FS because that's what I really want. I'm stuck between the giant anthem and the trance.
    After all the reading I've done it sounds like a good frame with decent parts for the money.
    If I need to, I can always upgrade through attrition. I was just looking for the best way to start with the best available platform I could. Now if I can figure out which trance / anthem under $3000 to go for...


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    If you have it narrowed down to those two bikes only, that simplifies it.

    If you want something to xc race, and be very fast get the anthem.
    If you want something more versatile, get the trance.

    The trance 3 and anthem 3 are both basically the same spec, but one has 4" travel and is racy, and the other has 5.5" and is IMO more fun.

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    Educated experienced help needed.

    Trance X 29er 1 for $2600
    Worth it over the trance x 29er 2 at $1900 ?


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    Quote Originally Posted by moefosho View Post
    If you have it narrowed down to those two bikes only, that simplifies it.

    If you want something to xc race, and be very fast get the anthem.
    If you want something more versatile, get the trance.

    The trance 3 and anthem 3 are both basically the same spec, but one has 4" travel and is racy, and the other has 5.5" and is IMO more fun.
    Boom! Thread done. Personally, I'd pick the Trance unless you were entering XC races to win. If I were entering races just for fun or just to see what it's like I'd still pick the Trance.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Charello View Post
    Trance X 29er 1 for $2600
    Worth it over the trance x 29er 2 at $1900 ?


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    Do you have the money? If it isn't a burden then choose the higher spec bike every time. But if you're going to have to sell a kidney then pass. Both are great bikes but spending more up front gets you a bike that works better for longer.
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    The whole FS vs HT is a debate that will last a long time. The people that can't rip a highly technical trail with a HT just lacks the skills (like me), but a long travel HT can take you a long way on the gnarliest of trails. Just ask any On One Inbred or Ragley Blue Pig owner. You just have to read all the opinions here and decide which way you want to go. There are pros and cons that go with owning either one. In the end, its not a science. Its what fits you and what works for you. If you could save $1000 while still having the same riding experience, in terms of enjoyment, then why not right? In the end, if you have your heart set on something like the Trance or Anthem, then absolutely get the bike you want. The only issue you'd have is that the 27.5" size for Giant just started in their 2014 line so it would difficult to find a good deal on them or find a used one. You could start off with the Trance 3 and upgrade as you go along.

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    You have been given a lot of good advice. The 29 is IMO a marketing solution that really only works well for tall people. Even tall people will tell you the smaller wheels are more fun. Hence the 27.5. But as Shakester points out the 27.5 is new and it will be hard to find a good deal or a used one.
    On the North Shore here in Vancouver folks have been riding 26 inch bikes for a long time because they work well on the knarly trails that are common here. I have not caught where you live or what sort of trails you will be riding. But don't over look the 26er's they are cheaper these days because shops and their customers have moved to the larger wheel formats. There is lots second hand. You will be able to get a better specked, lighter bike cheaper. If you live some where with IMBA style trails the 29 may do just fine.

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    That's a misconception. Full Suspension is more efficient than HT. The front and rear shock absorb the bumps and keeps the rider level over bumps and rough terrains, unlike HT that transfer the bumps to a momentum killing vertical movement.

    So then why pros use or prefers HT? First of all different pros have different reason but a there are few main reasons. XC Race courses are pretty well manicured, most rough sections are bite-size they can certainly get away with using 29ers(main reason why pros ride 29ers). They are skilled enough to unweighted the rear keeping the momentum going.

    Another important reason even more than light weight is feel. HT offer the perception not actual of the ability to deliver the pedaling power to the ground moving them forward. Psychological aspect of the sport plays very important role here, HT can help pump the riders up keep them motivated because of the solid "feel" of power transfer at the rear wheel. It has nothing to do with what actually happens. Sammy Sosa used cork filled bat to set the homerun record, when it turned out that corked bat hit shorter than regulation bat, the point is if they think they have the advantage it's enough to boost their ability.
    Wow, you have a lot of balls to assume you know more than pros, and chalk HT use up to superstition. I never put my own beliefs above data, and the data is there. Majority of pros XC use hardtails. Mass delusion at the professional level seems less likely to inferior design for pro xc use to me.


    If I need to, I can always upgrade through attrition. I was just looking for the best way to start with the best available platform I could. Now if I can figure out which trance / anthem under $3000 to go for...
    That works. I suggest you check out 1-3 year used Giants on ebay, you can click on sold to see what they go for. Upgrading along the way costs a lot more than buying as much bike as you want up front. You can reduce this "over-time" premium by buying parts online, etc. Shops will charge high markup for upgrades (at least in my area).


    Big box brands can sell the bike to you cheap because they knocked off the design of the big brands and do it poorly too, I might add. Then they buy overstock/overrun components, something with catchy enough name then go to work on the spec. BD's ad on XTR equipped bike would only have 2 may be 3 XTR parts the rest would be some cheap irrelevant parts to the XTR spec. They are counting on noobs not knowing any better and hoping that the only thing that sticks in the customer's mind is XTR, RockShox, and Avid brakes. The rest of the build is just junks.
    I believe you're calling "big box brands" what I call "value brands". You're generalizing too much. the 2014 XTR drive train on a motobecane is the same as the 2014 XTR on a Main brand. On the middle tier bikes, main brand and value brands put less tier parts on the bike. They put higher end parts where it's important (front shock + rear derailleur). It is fact, at any price tier the value brands while have higher tier components (not frame). Repeating what I said, some believe the frame difference is worth the lower tier components. (lower tier components work fine, the just tend to be a bit heavier)

    **** happens and components break on all bikes. On my 2008 moto, the seatpost was a piece of crap for mountain riding., but I believe that's been rectified in newer models. Handle bars were too narrow for me (but that's a personal fit thing, not lower quality). Included tires were high quality skinny tires (which I hate on a mtn bike). Even replacing these parts and customizing the bike for me, I was still hundreds less than a equivalent main brand bike.

    Buyers should compare the full spec list when buying a bike, not just what the marketing material highlights. Who reads that stuff anyway?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Charello View Post
    The honest truth is I do not know if I need a FS or if its just because it "looks useful".
    How Would a $2k "known brand HT" compare to a $2K "Motobecane FS"
    I am really trying to educate myself on what to look for and consider, before I make a decision. I am sitting here with the Mountain Bike Action 2014 Buyers Guide, and looking at forums and bikesdirect all at once.

    I'd step back and take a breath. I know how hard it is trying to figure out everything with bikes(much more to it than I thought).

    First question is to stop and ask yourself what kind of riding you want to do.

    If you plan on riding flowy, tree rooted and medium soft'hard trails, a hardatil is good. However if you want to jump, get air, go off of drops or bomb fastly downhill on pointy rocks....I'd get an FS bike.

    IMO you will get a better HD bike than FS bike if both bikes are the same price as your budget is.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bob13bob View Post
    Wow, you have a lot of balls to assume you know more than pros, and chalk HT use up to superstition. I never put my own beliefs above data, and the data is there. Majority of pros XC use hardtails. Mass delusion at the professional level seems less likely to inferior design for pro xc use to me.

    What data? HT is more efficient than FS? Or more XC pros race with 29er HT? It only supports what I said

    I rode with Joe Lawwill, Jared Rando, and Tara Llanes(when she was still riding, bless her heart). We'd see a lot of XC pros practicing at the trail we were on and I'd asked my 20 questions. Granted that they are not "XC" pros more like a WC DH and National Champs, but all ride XC/AM. I know Lawwill actually raced XC at Fontana. It is what it is. There's not superstition, which part on my post did I suggest that. No where I said with the rabbit tail, tiger's ball, or 8 ball anywhere on my post.


    Quote Originally Posted by bob13bob View Post
    I believe you're calling "big box brands" what I call "value brands". You're generalizing too much. the 2014 XTR drive train on a motobecane is the same as the 2014 XTR on a Main brand. On the middle tier bikes, main brand and value brands put less tier parts on the bike. They put higher end parts where it's important (front shock + rear derailleur). It is fact, at any price tier the value brands while have higher tier components (not frame). Repeating what I said, some believe the frame difference is worth the lower tier components. (lower tier components work fine, the just tend to be a bit heavier)
    Which same 2014 XTR drivetrain? Do you understand a concept of a drivetrain? I could not be more specific. I thought the most important part of a "drivetrain system" is the drivetrain components cranks+derailleurs+chain, at the very minimum. Do you actually think that Shimano DynaSys was designed to work like a champ with FSA crankset? I'm surprised you actually posted this, let alone did not do your homework.

    Not even their $3000 XX group(advertised) comes with XX crankset You are a reasonably smart/witty member, tell me why they do that?

    Big Value means you get more than what you paid for, this is not the case, if anything you get scam. Like I said, you get exactly what you paid for, exactly.

    No components upgrades worth choosing bottom tier frame. I repeat, No components upgrades worth choosing bottom tier frame.


    Quote Originally Posted by bob13bob View Post
    **** happens and components break on all bikes. On my 2008 moto, the seatpost was a piece of crap for mountain riding., but I believe that's been rectified in newer models. Handle bars were too narrow for me (but that's a personal fit thing, not lower quality). Included tires were high quality skinny tires (which I hate on a mtn bike). Even replacing these parts and customizing the bike for me, I was still hundreds less than a equivalent main brand bike.

    Buyers should compare the full spec list when buying a bike, not just what the marketing material highlights. Who reads that stuff anyway?
    I agree! Sh!t happens components break on all bikes, you can always replace and/or upgrade, and you will. It's not a smart move to upgrade the frame.

    Buyers should pick the right frame and component list that fit their budget. If you have $700-1000 budget you can find plenty of competent used FS bikes. I've been doing that for noob friends for years.

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    I would not even consider a hardtail. If ypu want to by a FS but are waiting till you have more money. I'd wait and get a FS. They are Oh so much better, especially for the older riders.
    Shakester. Makes the argument for racers on groomed trails fairly well. I would also mention that all top racers are sponsored to some degree and will be riding the gear MANUFACTURES want to sell. I watched the winning womens at some worlds race in Quebec. They top three all road 29" bikes that were supplied for them by their sponsors. They would all have been served better with a 26" wheel.
    But you have to remember. These professionals would have won on any mountain bike. But the small women did look funny on the large wheels.

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    I think the trend for pros is to train on a HT and ride an FS on race day. I know Todd Wells does and races with a FS Epic 29er. It makes sense. The HT helps them pick better lines and they just rip through it with a FS when it counts. But these guys are professionals while the majority of us aren't. As a weekend warrior, I'm looking for as much enjoyment as possible when I'm out there for that 2-3 hours. If you just want a FS to ride and have fun, then absolutely go that way. The OP has asked for people's opinions and got it, but in the end, its not our $2000 to spend, so he should read all the opinions and reach his own decision on what he wants. It sounds like he was a FS. If thats the case, then we should move on and give him opinions on a great FS bike for his budget.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Shakester View Post
    The whole FS vs HT is a debate that will last a long time. The people that can't rip a highly technical trail with a HT just lacks the skills (like me), but a long travel HT can take you a long way on the gnarliest of trails.
    Though I'm not exactly sure whether this is the point you were getting at, but there's no correlation between someone's preference between FS or HT and skill level whatsover. I actually rode burlier terrain better on a HT for many years than I can now, but that has a lot more to do with age and saddle time than anything else. I would've saved a lot of money on ibuprofen over the years if there were good FS bikes available BITD.
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    What data? HT is more efficient than FS? Or more XC pros race with 29er HT? It only supports what I said
    here's the data
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3J_rGPcSs0w
    FS bike was 1st place. Vast majority of bikes were hardtails.
    discussing it
    Olympic Mountain. Bike race - Hardtails

    Which same 2014 XTR drivetrain? Do you understand a concept of a drivetrain? I could not be more specific. I thought the most important part of a "drivetrain system" is the drivetrain components cranks+derailleurs+chain, at the very minimum. Do you actually think that Shimano DynaSys was designed to work like a champ with FSA crankset? I'm surprised you actually posted this, let alone did not do your homework.

    Not even their $3000 XX group(advertised) comes with XX crankset You are a reasonably smart/witty member, tell me why they do that?
    You are straw-manning and cherrypicking here. A full XTR drive train (components being equal) on a value brand bike will be the same as an XTR drive train no a main brand. On the midtier bikes, all bikes value or big brand make compromised on components. That doesn't mean there is anything wrong, they just are not decked out in top of the line parts every where. apples to apples.

    Ignore marketing materials. Look at the full spec list.

    Big Value means you get more than what you paid for, this is not the case, if anything you get scam. Like I said, you get exactly what you paid for, exactly.
    I have already addressed why I think value brands get your more engineering and manufacturing quality / $ than the main brands.

    No components upgrades worth choosing bottom tier frame. I repeat, No components upgrades worth choosing bottom tier frame.
    walmart $100 bike is bottom tier frame. Some of the value brands are clearly older designed frames (motobecanes). I think it's probable these older design frames are inferior to the newer stuff, but you can't generalize this across all the value brands. I believe you get a better ride with superior components even if your frame is inferior = value brands give more ride/$.

    There is evidence that some value frames are exactly the same. some of those Chinese branded carbon fiber frames are clones of the main brands. There were pics floating around demonstrating that many big brand frames are made in the same Chinese factory. It's not safe to say the value frames are inferior at all for at least some cases. This is already discussed and both points argued in the chinese carbon 29er frame thread.

    I think we've hashed out value vs main retail brands argument enough.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bob13bob View Post
    here's the data
    /www.youtube.
    FS bike was 1st place. Vast majority of bikes were hardtails.
    discussing it
    Olympic Mountain. Bike race - Hardtails
    I'm not sure what are you showing me, the youtube was about the olympic race, and the link was discussing more racers using HT. Both links support what I said. Many racers don't need FS to race because the race courses usually pretty well-groomed and the rough sections are bite size. It did not support the theory that hardtail is more efficient than FS.

    Quote Originally Posted by bob13bob View Post
    You are straw-manning and cherrypicking here. A full XTR drive train (components being equal) on a value brand bike will be the same as an XTR drive train no a main brand. On the midtier bikes, all bikes value or big brand make compromised on components. That doesn't mean there is anything wrong, they just are not decked out in top of the line parts every where. apples to apples.

    Ignore marketing materials. Look at the full spec list.
    See, what you said would make sense if BD spec it with XT or SLX crankset or even chainrings. Shimano spends a lot of $$$ and efforts on getting the right amount of shifting ramp on the chainring to provide the perfect Shimano shift, it's their trademark secret sauce. Many highend aftermarket chainring companies fall short on shifting because of this, sure people settled but it's not the same performance is it.? Even the SLX group would out perform mix'n'match XTR and FSA crankset any day, same goes with X7 group would out perform Raceface/XX mixed anyday.

    I've been looking at the BD's pin the donkey's spec for several years now, even they know it's BullSh!t, but they didn't change it. You tell me what's so good about their XX, XO or XTR equipped bikes. How many XXX components are made up of what they advertised.

    Quote Originally Posted by bob13bob View Post
    walmart $100 bike is bottom tier frame. Some of the value brands are clearly older designed frames (motobecanes). I think it's probable these older design frames are inferior to the newer stuff, but you can't generalize this across all the value brands. I believe you get a better ride with superior components even if your frame is inferior = value brands give more ride/$.
    Walmart bikes are not offroad worthy so it's not even make the bottom tier frame. Nashbar, performance bike frames are bottom tier frame. At up to 5:1 ratio on BD's FS and lord knows why they put the pivot placement where it is, it's inferior to even the older big brands frame designs.

    If you are talking about hardtail the quality front suspension would feel better than cheap one, but not even close with the rear shock. My Santa Cruz BLTC has the same shock as the BD's FS but it does not have remotely close plushness and suspension travel. Best way to explain is like, the BD's shock even at fully open rides like it's on full-time propedal.

    Quote Originally Posted by bob13bob View Post
    There is evidence that some value frames are exactly the same. some of those Chinese branded carbon fiber frames are clones of the main brands. There were pics floating around demonstrating that many big brand frames are made in the same Chinese factory. It's not safe to say the value frames are inferior at all for at least some cases. This is already discussed and both points argued in the chinese carbon 29er frame thread.

    I think we've hashed out value vs main retail brands argument enough.
    Again that's just wrong! It's like saying, Foxconn makes phone for Apple, Foxconn makes phone for Nokia, therefore Apple is the same as Nokia because they were made by the same company? I can tell you that they can not make the clone in the same factory or they'd be sued out of their existent. Just because the factory is making bike frames for Cannondale, GT, ya da blah, etc, it does not mean that the workers can apply Cannondale welding finish to GT or make them with the same materials. When this point was argued with Mike from BD he said we didn't know how things work, someone ask how it works, he had no answer.

    I agree we have hashed out the topic of BigBoxBrand VS Big brands quite a bit already and if this is a Frame building forum, where pretty much people there use better judgement when reading threads, I'd ended already. This is Beginners Forum and lots of noobs love to hear and believe that the BBB is just as good as Big brands at the fraction of the price. It's not the case. It's need to be argued everytime, sorry

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