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.
Results 1 to 11 of 11
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    156

    GF Piranha vs. Rockhopper vs. GF Sugar 4+

    debating on

    2006 GF Piranha (18" frame) $360 asking
    or
    2011 rockhopper m4 comp (21" frame) $350 firm
    or
    2006 GF Sugar 4+ (15" frame) $350 firm

    i know that the piranha and rockhopper are hardtails and the sugar is a full suspension. i do moderate mountain biking and looking to get more into it. I'm 5' 11" and 165lbs if that helps.

    what one would be best?

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    581
    There's no way all 3 the of those bikes will fit you, and fit is the number one most important thing when buying a MTB. 15" frames are, generally speaking, for people under 5'6". 21" frames, again generally speaking, fit people over 6' tall. 18" would be somewhere in the middle. First thing you need to figure out is what size you need, that will automatically cut down the choices.
    Quote Originally Posted by STT GUY View Post
    Screw the search function... you're new, ask the question(s). If anyone gets thier undies in a bunch it's thier problem.

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mack_turtle's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Posts
    2,880
    1+ on bike fit. if you find a killer deal on a full custom carbon FS bike and pay $1 for it, and it's two sizes too small, it will be a waste of $1.

    it's also impossible for us to tell what condition those bikes are in. maintaining a suspension fork is one thing, but there are a dozen (or more!) things that can go wrong with rear suspension and without knowing anything more about the history of these bikes, we can't tell you which bike will be the best purchase.

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    156
    Quote Originally Posted by Crash Test Dumby View Post
    There's no way all 3 the of those bikes will fit you, and fit is the number one most important thing when buying a MTB. 15" frames are, generally speaking, for people under 5'6". 21" frames, again generally speaking, fit people over 6' tall. 18" would be somewhere in the middle. First thing you need to figure out is what size you need, that will automatically cut down the choices.
    i understand that. I went to a bike shop and was fitted for a 17" but not sure about the others. The bike shop guy was absolutely set on me on a 17". It felt ok but the only way i will know is to try them on a trail.

    if it helps, i am on a 58cm road bike and it fits well. i have a longer than normal torso so stretching out on a 58cm was right for me.

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mack_turtle's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Posts
    2,880
    with those sizing options, i would say you might fit on a 18-20" frame. that's a huge generalization, but with a longer torso and being fit on a 58cm frame, 17" might be on the short side for you. I am 5'8" and I ride a 16-17" frame.

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mack_turtle's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Posts
    2,880
    the Pirana might be the best fit for you. the Sugar is definitely too small, and the Rockhopper will have you really stretched out.

  7. #7
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    156
    Quote Originally Posted by mack_turtle View Post
    1+ on bike fit. if you find a killer deal on a full custom carbon FS bike and pay $1 for it, and it's two sizes too small, it will be a waste of $1.

    it's also impossible for us to tell what condition those bikes are in. maintaining a suspension fork is one thing, but there are a dozen (or more!) things that can go wrong with rear suspension and without knowing anything more about the history of these bikes, we can't tell you which bike will be the best purchase.
    i hear ya. i am understand fit is everything. The Sugar was just used a couple of times because the person selling it is a triathlete so they bought a really nice road bike instead. It is such a debate, i have likes and dislikes about all of them and i am not very picky which makes it harder.

    i wish they would have a test day at the local MB trail so i could try all the frame sizes and see which one i like.

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mack_turtle's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Posts
    2,880
    you don't need to ride a bike on the trail to figure out which size fits you best. any reputable bike shop should allow you to test ride their bikes. you won't get a full test ride to learn how it handles in the mud and everything, but you can get enough of a feel for how it fits by just doing a block or two on pavement. if your LBS does not allow you to ride the bikes outside, you should shop elsewhere. the shop where i work has bikes going in and out the door all day being test-ridden. a good shop will also have a satisfaction guarantee of some sort. we have bikes come in covered in mud after three weeks of riding and give a full refund if the customer is not happy with it.

    if you want to REALLY test ride a bike to see how it handles, once you have figured out your size, ask the local shops if the know of any manufacturer's demos coming through soon. many manufacturers have a traveling show of their bikes and they will bring them to a trail site and let you go nuts on it.

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    156
    Quote Originally Posted by mack_turtle View Post
    you don't need to ride a bike on the trail to figure out which size fits you best. any reputable bike shop should allow you to test ride their bikes. you won't get a full test ride to learn how it handles in the mud and everything, but you can get enough of a feel for how it fits by just doing a block or two on pavement. if your LBS does not allow you to ride the bikes outside, you should shop elsewhere. the shop where i work has bikes going in and out the door all day being test-ridden. a good shop will also have a satisfaction guarantee of some sort. we have bikes come in covered in mud after three weeks of riding and give a full refund if the customer is not happy with it.

    if you want to REALLY test ride a bike to see how it handles, once you have figured out your size, ask the local shops if the know of any manufacturer's demos coming through soon. many manufacturers have a traveling show of their bikes and they will bring them to a trail site and let you go nuts on it.
    that is a good call. i will look up some demos in my area, thanks

  10. #10
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    156
    what do you think about a

    2009 Gary Fisher Piranha Mountain Bike 19" frame
    SRAM X5 derailleurs
    Rock Shox Tora SL 100mm fork
    Disc brakes
    Bontrager wheels

    thoughts?

  11. #11
    1/2 fast or 1/2 assed?
    Reputation: Koppuh Klyde's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Posts
    643
    Thoughts will be the same. Specs look good but fit is still a question. On paper your 5'11" should be fine on a 19"er. Good luck.
    I'm a ******bag in real life so I dont have to be one on the interwebz.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •