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.
Results 1 to 13 of 13
  1. #1
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    How to turn a full susser into a hardtail.....

    Fit a water bottle!

    So l sold my Cube hardtail and bought a Kona 130mm full susser.

    First time out and, well, on these descents l cannot feel much difference. Maybe l am expecting too much....but my backside is taking a hammering as l have been told to stay seated on these bikes when descending.

    I checked before l set off and there was plenty of bounce in the back end, as it were.

    Putting the bike back in the van a little disappointed (just spent 1500, about $2200) l notice that the rear suspension is solid.

    What is this little red lever on the rear shock....and turning it 90 degrees all is well again.

    I never had a bike with rear lockout, but in fairness l had checked the suspension was working before l set off.
    My water bottle had plenty of clearance from the rear shock, but on full compression the top of the shock moves forward and the water bottle neatly flicks the lockout lever on!

    No wonder it felt no better than my hardtail.

    Solution was to move the bottle cage forward on the alternative mounting holes.

  2. #2
    RTM
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    ha, good one. glad you figured it out.

    I will add that you absolutely should not stay seated on the descents. Doesn't matter what type of bike you're riding. You can do it to take a quick rest if you must, maybe in a smoother section, but its far better all around to stand up. Whoever told you to sit was dead wrong.
    "The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of a low price is forgotten." - Benjamin Franklin

  3. #3
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    +1 to what RTM said, you should be standing on descents. Sitting for the climbs is OK and the best way to keep the rear wheel weighted. On descents the bike needs to be moving around "under" you and you need to be off the seat for that to happen. Your legs have a good amount of suspension as well, your back not so much.

  4. #4
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    Ahh, the little red lever, hate that thing.

    +2 on standing while descending.

  5. #5
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    Since starting to use the bike l have realised it is often better to stand off the saddle on descents. But this was the first time out.

  6. #6
    Professional Crastinator
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    Quote Originally Posted by lotusdriver View Post
    Since starting to use the bike l have realised it is often better to stand off the saddle on descents. But this was the first time out.
    My friend, an IMBA-certified instructor, calls that "bike-body separation". When you get comfortable with your bike going all over while your body is generally on a straight line or constant arc down the trail, you will smile.

    Glad you figured out the water bottle thing. I laughed!

    -F
    It's never easier - you just go faster.

  7. #7
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    Water bottle? No hydration pack? My understanding is that you back stays pretty much stable and the bike and the rest of your body is moving around in response to the terrain. And so having a mass on your back provides the least hinderance in movement.

    As far as seated vs standing. If you're not pedaling, you should be standing. And there are many occassions when you might even be standing and pedaling (to accelerate, to get over a certain obstacle or trail feature or section).

    Stay seated if you're trying to rest or conserve energy...but never on descents.
    Just get out and ride!

  8. #8
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    To following up my post, a suspension's job is to keep your tires in contact with the terrain. If you are standing with your legs acting as additional suspension, the bike's suspension has to do less work. If you are seated, not only does it have to take the hit of the trail feature, but now has to deal with your ### insert fully loaded body weight. If you use your legs to help absorb and trail irregularities, it allows the suspension to do less work and thereby providing a much more predictable motion.
    Just get out and ride!

  9. #9
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    I have a "Camelbak" hydration device from when l used to ride with my friends ages ago.
    My plan is to buy a new bladder for it and start using it again.
    At the moment the water bottle is sufficient though.

  10. #10
    Big Gulps, Alright!
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    I put a water bottle cage on a bike with a reservoir shock. First big hit, the shock compressed and end of the reservoir blasted the cap off the water bottle.

  11. #11
    Fat-tired Roadie
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    I prefer a water bottle. It provides the least extra mass on my back.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrwSwitch View Post
    I prefer a water bottle. It provides the least extra mass on my back.
    13 Lenz Lunchbox punkass

  13. #13
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    This is all a steep learning curve for me!

    Next time out l will make sure l get out of the saddle more, l don't know where l got the idea from that you should stay seated.

    However l did quickly work out that it is better to stand on the pedals, when descending rough terrain.

    Particularly if the rear shock is locked out lol

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