1. The most important thing about buying a new bike is to make sure it fits. The only way you'll know if the bike is right for you is to size up the bike and make sure that the bike's geometry matches your body's geometry. Ask questions and do some research.
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2. If possible, try to find a shop that will let you demo the bike on real dirt. Five minutes in a parking lot won't cut it. You wouldn't buy a car without a real world test drive, and a bike should be no different.
3. Don't belive the hype. Just because your favorite rider or best friend rides a certain bike, that doesn't mean that's the best one for you. Have an open mind and be realistic about your needs and ability.
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  1. #1
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    Full Sus. Under $600?

    I am looking for a new mountain bike to ride the trails with and was looking to go full suspension. I would assume most of you will say to go hardtail at this price range, and if so I might have to do that. But I really would like a full suspension if possible. I'm pretty hard on bikes, so quality components matter to me. I usually break a derailer or bend a rim pretty easily. I was thinking about going XT for this price range. I was looking at these two bikes specifically. Let me know what you all think. I have been searching used as well.

    http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/..._ghost6900.htm

    http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/...ne/700ds_x.htm

    Ya, I know its from bikesdirect, not the best. But if you can't mention any bikes specifically, please mention some good parts I should be looking for at this range eg shocks, forks etc.

  2. #2
    DynoDon
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    Here is a good FS for a few more beans, Moto had the Fantom Comp for $895. but its been improved and the price went up, this Sette is a pretty good bike for the money.. other then this I think a HT would be best, unless you can find a good used bike. good luck

    http://www.pricepoint.com/detail/187...onarch-3.1.htm

  3. #3
    S&G CREW
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    Spend 400 more get a giant yukon supposed to be the best under 1000.If your set on 600 def go hardtail get more for your money.

  4. #4
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    I don't know how good Craig's List is in your area, but it isn't even that great in mine and I've found some amazing deals. If you find one on there, research the bike thoroughly before you go see it to know what problem areas to look at and how to make sure it's right for you. Some people discourage it because you can buy a bad bike and not know it, but I've gotten really lucky and saved a lot of money. Recently in my area, I've seen a Giant Trance, a Giant AC, and a Specialized StumpJumper Full Suspension all for under or around $600, which were really good buys.

    I just bought my RockHopper off Craig's List, ridden once before I got it, looked like it was straight off the show room floor, and saved so much money I made some awesome upgrades and I'm still under the cost of a brand new one. The mechanic at the LBS told me he couldn't believe the deal I got because it was basically brand new.

  5. #5
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    Those bikes look terrible. Dated designs, probably heavy. Don't waste your time.

    Seriously get a decent hard tail. At $600 anything you buy new will pretty much have the same components, or same level of components (just maybe from different brands).
    :wq

  6. #6
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    Ok, thanks for the suggestions. I will keep all the comments in mind. It sounds like the only way I would get a FS is if I could score one cheap enough on Craigs List. Otherwise what is the best hardtail I could find for around $500?

  7. #7
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    Once again, a lot of people discourage newbies from buying off Craig's List, but I paid $500for my RockHopper, and I've never regretted it. My last bike, a Trek 4300, came off Craig's List too, and I'm about to sale it for exactly what I paid last year.

    Granted, I may have gotten lucky, but I like to think it was just my persistence paying off. I kept an eye on four different areas of Craig's List, all no more than an hour drive from me, and found exactly what I was looking for, even though it took me about three weeks.
    I'LL FUNK ANYTHING THAT GROOVES

  8. #8
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    Out of curiosity, what makes the components on the bikes I listed bad? What types of components should I be looking for when looking for a bike? What is quailty and what sould I stay away from?

  9. #9
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    HT 29er might be as smooth as a 26" FS, just sayin.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by mack_turtle
    HT 29er might be as smooth as a 26" FS, just sayin.
    How do you figure? Im new to the MTB scene.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by neotrixx
    How do you figure? Im new to the MTB scene.




    Larger diameter wheels roll over obstacles easier. I agree with most of these guy's, at this price point avoid D/S bikes, the quality is really lacking. If you think about the price of a quality rear shock, which can be 300 dollars, it just does not leave a lot of room for the rest of the bikes components. A 29er hardtail is a very capable ride, try a few out , I'm sure you will be pleasantly surprised. Good luck .

  12. #12
    T.W.O.
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    get used. cannondale rush, prophet. giant trance, reign. they can be had for your budget just be patience.

  13. #13
    Cantankerous Old Fart
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    Quote Originally Posted by manabiker
    Here is a good FS for a few more beans, Moto had the Fantom Comp for $895. but its been improved and the price went up, this Sette is a pretty good bike for the money.. other then this I think a HT would be best, unless you can find a good used bike. good luck

    http://www.pricepoint.com/detail/187...onarch-3.1.htm

    That looks like a pretty good bike for the money.

    Good solid drive train.

    Only thing missing is a lock -out.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by neotrixx
    I am looking for a new mountain bike to ride the trails with and was looking to go full suspension. I would assume most of you will say to go hardtail at this price range, and if so I might have to do that. But I really would like a full suspension if possible. I'm pretty hard on bikes, so quality components matter to me. I usually break a derailer or bend a rim pretty easily. I was thinking about going XT for this price range. I was looking at these two bikes specifically. Let me know what you all think. I have been searching used as well.

    http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/..._ghost6900.htm

    http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/...ne/700ds_x.htm

    Ya, I know its from bikesdirect, not the best. But if you can't mention any bikes specifically, please mention some good parts I should be looking for at this range eg shocks, forks etc.
    keep in mind that an XT build kit alone retails for around $800 (prob closer to $500 if you don't have hero disc's) so if you're paying $600 for the whole bike, you're making some pretty heavy compromises on the frame and fork. for $600 even used you are going to be buying something pretty old and heavy. IF I were you, I'd be looking at used hard tails or save up longer and buy a new mid-level hard tail. even with a used frame, I spent $1200 building up my stumpjumper FSR frame.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by was98strat
    keep in mind that an XT build kit alone retails for around $800 (prob closer to $500 if you don't have hero disc's) so if you're paying $600 for the whole bike, you're making some pretty heavy compromises on the frame and fork. for $600 even used you are going to be buying something pretty old and heavy. IF I were you, I'd be looking at used hard tails or save up longer and buy a new mid-level hard tail. even with a used frame, I spent $1200 building up my stumpjumper FSR frame.
    Well I'm not looking to go hardcore into the sport, just to be able to handle some Weekend Warriors from time to time and something that can handle my thrashing. I like to hit tom jumps from time to time and drop offs, so I figured a FS would be nice. I have had some Costco Mountain Bikes in the past and obviously they didn't last long.

  16. #16
    FKA Malibu412
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    If a 17" frame will work for you, that Sette is a very decent kit. It's a 6" bike that is intended for the type of riding you describe.

    The BD rigs are not so much. The only thing XT is the RD on the Moto. Older, dated single pivot designs. 3"-4" travel. Pogo sticks with wheels, really.

    Otherwise, used, ht, spend at least another $400-$500 for new fs.
    "I love the bike. It's my meditation. I think I'm bike-sexual." -Robin Williams

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by neotrixx
    Well I'm not looking to go hardcore into the sport, just to be able to handle some Weekend Warriors from time to time and something that can handle my thrashing. I like to hit tom jumps from time to time and drop offs, so I figured a FS would be nice. I have had some Costco Mountain Bikes in the past and obviously they didn't last long.
    Neither would your choices granted they are a bit beefier but the suspension on them would not be a joy to ride. There's very little chance that you can pick up a brand new FS with descend component for $600 and it would perform remotely close to the base level premium brand that start around $2k, it's just not possible unless it's hot.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by neotrixx
    Well I'm not looking to go hardcore into the sport, just to be able to handle some Weekend Warriors from time to time and something that can handle my thrashing. I like to hit tom jumps from time to time and drop offs, so I figured a FS would be nice. I have had some Costco Mountain Bikes in the past and obviously they didn't last long.
    I thought that too when I bought my mountain bike last year. Now that I own what I can call a 'real mountain bike', I wish I would have spent a little more the first time around, looked more closely at the components, and gotten something that I wouldn't have outgrown in one year. It did it's job in getting me started again, but I needed something more to keep up with me pretty soon afterwards.

    $600 can go a long way on a lightly used good hard tail. Like the other posts said, if you want a quality rear shock that won't annoy you or take away from your ride more than it will contribute to your ride, the shock alone will eat up half your budget.
    I'LL FUNK ANYTHING THAT GROOVES

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Malibu412
    If a 17" frame will work for you, that Sette is a very decent kit. It's a 6" bike that is intended for the type of riding you describe.

    The BD rigs are not so much. The only thing XT is the RD on the Moto. Older, dated single pivot designs. 3"-4" travel. Pogo sticks with wheels, really.

    Otherwise, used, ht, spend at least another $400-$500 for new fs.
    Well I'm 6'2 so I don't know how well I would fit on a 17". I was assuming I would need a 21"

    Quote Originally Posted by mimi1885
    Neither would your choices granted they are a bit beefier but the suspension on them would not be a joy to ride. There's very little chance that you can pick up a brand new FS with descend component for $600 and it would perform remotely close to the base level premium brand that start around $2k, it's just not possible unless it's hot.
    Yes that is true, which is why I was looking at used bikes for FS. I think hardtail is the only thing I could afford new. If the Sette is really a steal for what it is, then I might be able to stretch up to that price.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by neotrixx
    Out of curiosity, what makes the components on the bikes I listed bad?

    Both of those have coil shocks in the rear, which in of it self is not bad. The problem is that they don't have re-bound damping. Believe me that is a big, big deal with full suspension bikes.

    When you hit a rock or obstacle, you want the spring to extend back to its original length slower than its compression rate. Without re-bound damping, you potentially can be launched over the bars (it happened to me).

    The rebound damping also helps reduce pedal-induced bob. When you pedal, those bikes will probably pogo stick and that will suck up your energy real quick.

    Listen to everyone here.........he best strategy is to either buy a hard-tail with better components. Another one is to buy a good full suspension frame w/a good shock but less-expensive components and then slowly upgrade that bike as things wear out.

  21. #21
    FKA Malibu412
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    Quote Originally Posted by neotrixx
    Well I'm 6'2 so I don't know how well I would fit on a 17". I was assuming I would need a 21"
    You wouldn't fit a 17". Problem is, it's the only size in stock for that model, spec and price. Probably why it's priced so reasonably.
    "I love the bike. It's my meditation. I think I'm bike-sexual." -Robin Williams

  22. #22
    Cantankerous Old Fart
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    Quote Originally Posted by Malibu412
    If a 17" frame will work for you, that Sette is a very decent kit. It's a 6" bike that is intended for the type of riding you describe.

    The BD rigs are not so much. The only thing XT is the RD on the Moto. Older, dated single pivot designs. 3"-4" travel. Pogo sticks with wheels, really.

    Otherwise, used, ht, spend at least another $400-$500 for new fs.

    I agree, the Sette has a suspension similar to my Kent built Cadillac which has turned out to be a pretty solid bike after upgrading the fork/shock. I could afford to do that as I only paid $380 for the bike to begin with. After a total investment of just over $1000, I put 3400 trouble free miles on it last year.

    W/the pivot on the seat stays it will not react like a true Horst link (chain stay pivot) suspension under hard braking, but under all other conditions it will. It's a pretty good frame/suspension design for XC riding.

    Those Bike Direct bikes will definately be like pogo stcks. Nothing really wrong W/the components, especially the 2nd one you linked, just a poor frame/suspension design.

  23. #23
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    At the LBS I work for, we have a couple of $600 FS bikes on the shelves. They stay on the top 3rd tier rack. Every customer that comes in looking at them, we tell them they are better buying a hardtail for that price. Its nothing but a pogo stick boat anchor. Not worth the money.

    I can put them on a better spec hardtail for the same price point that will actually ride better on the trails.

    The Sette isn't too bad, but I personally stay away from FS bikes that are under $1000.

    Only exception would be the Giant Yukon. Its probably the only FS bike under a grand I would buy.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by zjenni01
    Once again, a lot of people discourage newbies from buying off Craig's List, but I paid $500for my RockHopper, and I've never regretted it. My last bike, a Trek 4300, came off Craig's List too, and I'm about to sale it for exactly what I paid last year.
    My buddy scored on a Stumpjumper 29er off CL. Of course we spent a few weeks of him sending me pics of the bike to critique before we found the right one, but it was worth the effort.
    :wq

  25. #25
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    Found this bike in my local Craigslist. You think its worth checking out?

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