1. The most important thing about buying a new bike is to make sure it fits. The only way you'll know if the bike is right for you is to size up the bike and make sure that the bike's geometry matches your body's geometry. Ask questions and do some research.
mtn. biking 101
2. If possible, try to find a shop that will let you demo the bike on real dirt. Five minutes in a parking lot won't cut it. You wouldn't buy a car without a real world test drive, and a bike should be no different.
3. Don't belive the hype. Just because your favorite rider or best friend rides a certain bike, that doesn't mean that's the best one for you. Have an open mind and be realistic about your needs and ability.
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  1. #1
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    First FS...what to upgrade with $350 in store credit?

    I picked up a 2009 GT Force 2.0 at Performance for $1800. My first FS!

    It's double points weekend so now I have $350 in store credit, so basically I got the bike for $1450 + tax. A good deal or not? I was comparing to the BMC Trailfox and 2009 GT Marathon Elite, both also ~$1500. Unfortunately they didn't have the Marathon Elite and having it shipped would mean only no double points. The fork on the Force is probably the best - the 140mm may be a bit of overkill for me at this point, but I felt it was worth the upgrade over the Elite.

    I do mostly trail riding - lots of roots/rocks, no crazy jumps or anything (yet), some hills.

    Here are the specs:
    http://www.gtbicycles.com/us/eng/Bik...FOR2-Force-2.0

    I'm not sure of the value of performance points with their markup sales, but is there anything worth upgrading on the bike, perhaps to make it climb better, with my $350 of credit? Or do people just buy stuff and flip it on ebay?

    I'm guessing the brakes or tires are the weak point and should be upgraded first? Something where there is going to be a noticeable performance difference not to just save 20 grams would be great.

    I have a Cannondale F5 HT right now so I have all the basic bike stuff already covered - helmet, gloves, etc.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    ~Disc~Golf~
    Reputation: highdelll's Avatar
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    when do you have to use the $$?
    I'd wait and ride it for a bit and see what is lacking.
    That said, grips, saddle, and pedals are a preference item and chances are they're not your preference on a stock ride, so you might start there.
    Honestly... ahh I give up

  3. #3
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    I believe the points are good for a year.

  4. #4
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    The Float R is your biggest weak spot get a RP23 shock.You'll feel the difference on the saddle on climbs. Everything else can wait.

  5. #5
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    If you just got the bike ride it for a while first, but if you have the itch to buy, may be some tools like bike stand. I had a a few hundred bucks credit from performance a few years back I bought the spin doctor repair stand which is the same as Ultimate, and bought the nice Topeak pumps, and a few tools. I thought it was a good investment.

  6. #6
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    I know the rear shock is a little weak, and I debated between waiting six months to get a 2010 closeout with the thru axle fork and RP2 shock, but the thing is if you wait for new tech you'll always be waiting another six months

    I'm not in a hurry to spend, but if there is anything worth upgrading it could be done before I start riding the bike and then I could sell the original parts as new - that's all.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by mimi1885
    If you just got the bike ride it for a while first, but if you have the itch to buy, may be some tools like bike stand. I had a a few hundred bucks credit from performance a few years back I bought the spin doctor repair stand which is the same as Ultimate, and bought the nice Topeak pumps, and a few tools. I thought it was a good investment.
    Reverse, TOOLS. Tools are empowering. how much do you weight?

  8. #8
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    buy 350 packets of Chamois Butt'r...because it would be funny.

    Expensive joke but c'mon...the looks on their faces will be golden!

  9. #9
    fnar fnar brrraaaaap
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    Drop seat...

  10. #10
    Bike to the Bone...
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    Quote Originally Posted by boyd888
    I know the rear shock is a little weak, and I debated between waiting six months to get a 2010 closeout with the thru axle fork and RP2 shock, but the thing is if you wait for new tech you'll always be waiting another six months

    I'm not in a hurry to spend, but if there is anything worth upgrading it could be done before I start riding the bike and then I could sell the original parts as new - that's all.
    I don't know if really there is a difference between the RP2 and RP23 other that choosing 3 different propedal settings, I wouldn't look at a shock upgrade right now.

  11. #11
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    I like the adj seat post idea, the tools, bike stand, grip, saddle, and definitely 350 packets of Chamois Butt'r.

    Oh Boyd, you need more store credit!!

  12. #12
    Fat-tired Roadie
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    Better climbing? The "right" tire for where you ride, clipless pedals, racy shoes. I don't know what kind of shoes and pedals you use on the F5...

    Maybe a lighter wheelset, although the stock one sounds pretty good. "Your" saddle, especially if it's lighter than the thing that came on it. The right size stem to make the bike fit you.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by boyd888
    I picked up a 2009 GT Force 2.0 at Performance for $1800. My first FS!

    It's double points weekend so now I have $350 in store credit, so basically I got the bike for $1450 + tax.
    Actually, you paid $1800 + tax. And for free they threw in some stuff of your choosing that you don't really need.

  14. #14
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    its still a good deal, and a really great bike. dont try to crap on his parade man :P

    *i* would pull that fox fork off immediately and sell it. it still has a very good resale. the R damper sucks. scoop up some other easy to sell stuff from pb with your $350 credit and get yourself a new rockshox revelation, a 20mm front wheel and a faster rear tire (you'll be amazed how much faster the bike feels after removing that nevegal). it'll be like having a whole different, drastically better bike. a 150mm travel bike like that is a bit silly with a noodly qr fork!

  15. #15
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    funny story I actually decided not to take the GT Force home because I found a new 09 GT Force Carbon Expert for $2K. Considering how much better the expert is for the $300-500 more it cost (depending on how you value performance credit) I think it was worth the upgrade. So I probably don't have to deal with upgrading the Expert for a while.

    I do appreciate the suggestions that were given though, thanks!

  16. #16
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    I wasn't commenting on the bike or the bargain, just pointing out the reality of the transaction (the way I look at these things anyway). And just bustin' balls.

    Anyway, my new bike is feeling a little sluggish. I'm running a 2.1 Velociraptor on wet and dry rocks, logs, and rock/log combo features. I like the traction, but what's a faster-feeling rear tire?

  17. #17
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    AHH!, Now what are we going to do with our $350.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by mimi1885
    AHH!, Now what are we going to do with our $350.
    I'm tellin' you, Chamois Butt'r...Good joke...

  19. #19
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    well you are right sir

    Quote Originally Posted by captainjoon
    I'm tellin' you, Chamois Butt'r...Good joke...
    Mistaken that for Gu, that's a better joke

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by mimi1885
    Mistaken that for Gu, that's a better joke

  21. #21
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    you could get a backup bike like a trek 820. Its what I just bought, and I'm really happy ....I feel like a poor man now

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by boyd888
    I picked up a 2009 GT Force 2.0 at Performance for $1800. My first FS!...

    but is there anything worth upgrading on the bike, perhaps to make it climb better, with my $350 of credit? ...

    Thanks!
    Get this:

    http://www.performancebike.com/bikes...0_20000_400306

    and ride it lots, that will make your bike climb better.

    David B.

  23. #23
    turtles make me hot
    Reputation: NYrr496's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by captainjoon
    buy 350 packets of Chamois Butt'r...because it would be funny.

    Expensive joke but c'mon...the looks on their faces will be golden!
    I just laughed my ass off at that.
    I like turtles

  24. #24
    turtles make me hot
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    I say get a Chris King bottom bracket. Maybe not in your case, but I'm a clyde and I hammered the stock Shimano on my bike into submission.

    Nice bike, BTW.
    I like turtles

  25. #25
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    I like the spare bike idea. If you don't have one, you should. Keeps you in the saddle when you'd otherwise be couch sitting.

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