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  1. #1
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    Need help picking a mountain bike

    To start off I'm quite new around here as well as in picking mountain bikes. I was wondering if you can suggest a bicycle within a budget of 1,000 dollar, that is capable of withstanding pure rocky terrain/crack roads, cause the place I plan on riding the bike has now and then flat roads, but sometimes you have to go through the rocky bumpy terrain. Also, is there a website where it explains each part or function of a mountain bike to gain a better understanding how they all work together to maximize your riding experience. Thank you for stopping by and helping out.

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    For close to 1000. The Salsa Timberjack looks good.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by MX25 View Post
    To start off I'm quite new around here as well as in picking mountain bikes. I was wondering if you can suggest a bicycle within a budget of 1,000 dollar, that is capable of withstanding pure rocky terrain/crack roads, cause the place I plan on riding the bike has now and then flat roads, but sometimes you have to go through the rocky bumpy terrain. Also, is there a website where it explains each part or function of a mountain bike to gain a better understanding how they all work together to maximize your riding experience. Thank you for stopping by and helping out.
    (currently need 10 posts before I can start my own thread with my questions - so I have to sit shotgun with you OP, if you don't mind)

    I too am trying to figure out what to look for for my first bike. So far I have gathered that a used hard tail for $300 to $400 is a good start to be able to test out what kind of riding you like to do, before you end up dropping a grand on a much better bike.

    Other than that, what brands should we look for and steer clear of? Or what obvious components should we desire on whichever bike we go to look at to buy?

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    I'm just getting back into riding with experience in 20in hitting doubles and table tops we would make in the woods back in the 80s/90s. I tested two bikes and couldn't really tell a difference so I went with the sexy one. '17 Specialized Pitch 650b in Med for $730 Canadian.
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Patty McDude View Post
    I'm just getting back into riding with experience in 20in hitting doubles and table tops we would make in the woods back in the 80s/90s. I tested two bikes and couldn't really tell a difference so I went with the sexy one. '17 Specialized Pitch 650b in Med for $730 Canadian.
    Nice looking bike for the money - Congrats.
    I'm on a '17 b+ hardtail .... just can't seem to get beyond simple to fancy and expensive .... Oh Darn !! lol
    In the Middle Ages, the biggest mistake was not putting on your armor because you were 'just going down to the corner.'

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kyle_W View Post
    (currently need 10 posts before I can start my own thread with my questions - so I have to sit shotgun with you OP, if you don't mind)

    I too am trying to figure out what to look for for my first bike. So far I have gathered that a used hard tail for $300 to $400 is a good start to be able to test out what kind of riding you like to do, before you end up dropping a grand on a much better bike.
    This is such a smart way to approach it and there are plenty of new bikes discounted as last years inventory sometimes that hit the sub $600 range too if supply of decent used bikes is an issue.

    Other than that, what brands should we look for and steer clear of? Or what obvious components should we desire on whichever bike we go to look at to buy?
    You'll get some specific feedback on this over a few added responses. I'm not best suited to that feedback.

    In general terms, if you have time to shop and learn as you go, you'll see a pattern of bikes in given price ranges that all offer some mix of component spec that average out to good, better, best as you go up the price ladder. One reviewer might beat up the brakes on the bike whereas another will complement the way the fork works for an entry level range or something along those lines.
    There are predictable and obvious trade-offs when looking at bikes other than some of the elite top tier stuff.

    There are certain bikes and brands that do well as the exception for value if you pick apart the components for the price they target. Other brands are almost "too proud" across most of their line and while having a loyal following, don't offer any particularly great deals or values when accounting for the components that make the bike except for maybe one or two models or some special year-end sale prices.

    Time is on your side when getting into the riding the way you are approaching it so you'll have time to learn up some and get some concerns or questions answered here as well. Once you zero in on the type or trails and riding you like and a given budget for bike # 2, you'll get to some specific models and brands that can be added to your short list of price shopping and test rides. Hopefully your local bike shop -LBS- will have some good choices if you go new. Some of them have group rides and maint or repair clinics offered sometimes and they know the local trails well too so they can be a great partner / resource.
    In the Middle Ages, the biggest mistake was not putting on your armor because you were 'just going down to the corner.'

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kyle_W View Post
    (currently need 10 posts before I can start my own thread with my questions - so I have to sit shotgun with you OP, if you don't mind)

    I too am trying to figure out what to look for for my first bike. So far I have gathered that a used hard tail for $300 to $400 is a good start to be able to test out what kind of riding you like to do, before you end up dropping a grand on a much better bike.

    Other than that, what brands should we look for and steer clear of? Or what obvious components should we desire on whichever bike we go to look at to buy?

    Buying used is a good plan. Two years ago, I bought a 2012 Giant Talon 29er from Craigslist (see pic). It was like new and I paid $320. I've upgraded to an air fork, tubeless, etc.

    A friend just picked up a 2017 Trek Marlin 7 29er also like new for $350. Granted, that was a steal but you may get lucky.

    Look for a bike that's fairly new, most of the major brands have similar builds for an entry/mid level hardtail. The fork will most likely be coil Suntour/Rockshox. You can always post what you find here and get feedback. Good luck!
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  8. #8
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    Need help picking a mountain bike

    Quote Originally Posted by bachman1961 View Post
    Quote
    Makes perfect sense. Thank you!

    Quote Originally Posted by Rhodyman View Post
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    That makes me feel better about finding a used bike in great shape. Thank you!

    I am a hypochondriac to a degree, so I worry about buying a stolen bike - just like how I worry about buying power tools in CL. However - I figure that's not really a way to live. On another thread that I posted on, I was instructed to just ask polite and prying questions about the bike when I go to look at it to get a feel for if the seller is legit. And on top of that, if the dude selling the bike is solid and just doesn't look like a sheister - it's probably not a stolen bike?

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    Just follow common sense when dealing with CL. Always meet in a public place, you can usually get a vibe, I prefer text but always make contact via phone with a seller/buyer. I avoid certain locations, even if a good deal. Bring a buddy with you.

    Knowing if stolen or not would be difficult, but if its too good to be true...
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    Quote Originally Posted by jcd46 View Post
    Just follow common sense when dealing with CL. Always meet in a public place, you can usually get a vibe, I prefer text but always make contact via phone with a seller/buyer. I avoid certain locations, even if a good deal. Bring a buddy with you.

    Knowing if stolen or not would be difficult, but if its too good to be true...
    Understood. Thanks!


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  11. #11
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    Now. What variances are there in picking a bike?

    I'm 6'. So I'd need to try out a L and an XL to see which one fits me better.

    But, what about wheel size? I read that for someone 6'+ you want 29" wheels?

    Other than that - what variances do I need to look for?


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  12. #12
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    Frame sizes vary between brands, so one brand's large might feel the same as another brand's xl. For wheel size, it doesn't matter a whole lot for your first bike, especially if you're buying used, you'll want to keep your options open. 29 will roll faster but is also heavier than 27.5. The frame fit is really the crucial bit though.

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    (again, OP, I do apologize I cannot start a thread of my own!)

    Local CL listings aren't too impressive; however I did find this, I just don't know what i'm looking at:

    https://houston.craigslist.org/bik/d...266473458.html

    Any opinions? On BikeBlueBook, the 1995 model apparently retailed for $800.

    It has a 1x drive gear, which I like, but no disc brakes or suspension fork; however if the frame is worth keeping I always can upgrade everything around it?

    Or, I found this:

    https://houston.craigslist.org/bik/d...243006132.html

    Retails for around $1,600?

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kyle_W View Post
    (again, OP, I do apologize I cannot start a thread of my own!)

    Local CL listings aren't too impressive; however I did find this, I just don't know what i'm looking at:

    https://houston.craigslist.org/bik/d...266473458.html

    Any opinions? On BikeBlueBook, the 1995 model apparently retailed for $800.

    It has a 1x drive gear, which I like, but no disc brakes or suspension fork; however if the frame is worth keeping I always can upgrade everything around it?
    Its not worth $375 in my opinion. It doesnt have off road tires on it, they are more for paved path/gravel riding. You will have a very hard time finding a suspension fork for that frame.
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    That is what I was thinking too. I would be worried about finding compatible components for it.

    I did find this though?

    https://houston.craigslist.org/bik/d...243006132.html

    Retails for over $1,600?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kyle_W View Post
    That is what I was thinking too. I would be worried about finding compatible components for it.

    I did find this though?

    https://houston.craigslist.org/bik/d...243006132.html

    Retails for over $1,600?
    That looks like a solid bike. Has disc brakes and a threadless fork which are more modern components. The hubs are quick release which is typical for entry level-mid range hard tails. Not sure what it would be worth but $600 seems to be in the ballpark.
    2008 BMC Fourstroke 19-559 ISO (RIP in peace)
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  17. #17
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    Thanks for the help!

    Definitely is a step up from typical bikes that i've been seeing on CL. ...however, as much as I COULD and WANT to drop $600 on a bike right now......$200 to $300 is more in my ballpark, sadly.

    I do see a few of these though ($600 bikes going for $200):

    https://houston.craigslist.org/bik/d...261762847.html

  18. #18
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    People are generally open to negotiating on craigslist deals, so it cant hurt to ask if they are flexible on price. You never know, though. Good luck
    2008 BMC Fourstroke 19-559 ISO (RIP in peace)
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kyle_W View Post
    Thanks for the help!

    Definitely is a step up from typical bikes that i've been seeing on CL. ...however, as much as I COULD and WANT to drop $600 on a bike right now......$200 to $300 is more in my ballpark, sadly.

    I do see a few of these though ($600 bikes going for $200):

    https://houston.craigslist.org/bik/d/avalanche-gt-mountain-bike/6261762847.
    html

    Slim pickings on CL. I'd stay away from the old, used bikes. Check out this Raleigh Tokul 2, $450 with corporate discount, great price and reviews.

    https://www.raleighusa.com/tokul-11578

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rhodyman View Post
    Slim pickings on CL. I'd stay away from the old, used bikes. Check out this Raleigh Tokul 2, $450 with corporate discount, great price and reviews.

    https://www.raleighusa.com/tokul-11578
    Nice find! I have thought about buying a new bike. It's certainly tempting.

    However, with so many used bikes in CL floating around, I figured I'd get a (what usually are around $500 bikes from what I've checked) $200 CL bike, then learn on and scratch that one up before I drop $600+ on a permanent bike.

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    You can get a GT VERB for $1,000 brand new from Jenson USA. full suspension, hyd. Disc brakes, air shock. That's list price for a 2017. In a couple months you will probably be able to get it for even less.

    GT Verb Comp 27.5" Bike 2017 > Bikes > Mountain Bikes | Jenson USA

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    I just bought a REI Co-Op DRT 1.1. Its $499 new. Has hydraulic disc brakes and is a hard tail. Granted I only have about 3 miles on it but I like it so far. So if you are scared of used that might work for you. It's the decision I had to make after looking at a bunch of junk used ones and the non junk that almost always seemed stolen.

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    The REI Co-Op DRT 1.1 has a single spring fork with no rebound damping and plastic bushings inside instead of the normal metal for longevity on trails. It is designed for smooth trails and bike paths. Other 'X' series forks are the same. A good fork makes a bike.

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    Can't post my own threads. So was wondering is a 2017 rockhopper 29er sport new for 515$ (Tax included) Seem good? Or 2018 rockhopper base for 449$ (tax not included?) sport has hydro brakes, base doesn't. Also different derailleurs?

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by NewBeeRider25 View Post
    Can't post my own threads. So was wondering is a 2017 rockhopper 29er sport new for 515$ (Tax included) Seem good? Or 2018 rockhopper base for 449$ (tax not included?) sport has hydro brakes, base doesn't. Also different derailleurs?
    I started out on a Rockhopper and enjoyed it. It comes down to how you ride your bike. I realized that I was an aggressive trail rider about a month after I started riding and my Rockhopper couldn't keep up with me. I ended up selling it and going with something more suited to my riding style.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Battery View Post
    I started out on a Rockhopper and enjoyed it. It comes down to how you ride your bike. I realized that I was an aggressive trail rider about a month after I started riding and my Rockhopper couldn't keep up with me. I ended up selling it and going with something more suited to my riding style.
    What did you go with? I don't have the funds for a FS but I like to have a good ride... small drops, small jumps and up/downhill mix. I had a hardrock about 5 years ago and sold it to purchase my first fishing kayak but now I have upgraded my fishing kayak and want to purchase a new Mtb to have both. I did upgrade my hardrock shock with rockshocks before and would probably do that later down the road when I get it as a gift or maybe even buy some fox's. But for now what do you think?

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    Also cant start my own thread. Looking at two diamondback bikes (I get a pretty good corporate discount) - the Release 1 and the Sync'r - and can't decide between the two. I can get the release 1 for $1440 and the Sync'r for $840. I think the sync'r would be a great starting point but I don't want to "grow out of it" within a year, and I feel like the release 1 would be a steal for that price but I don't know that I'm prepared to spend that much. Also, the price point on the sync'r would allow me to do some upgrades early on. Any advice?

  28. #28
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    I would go with the cheaper bike.

    I went through the same dillemma - I have been finding nice bikes on CL for $700+, but the $300+ CL bikes are really what I feel comfortable buying right now; after a year or two, assuming I stick with the sport, and after I scratch up the cheaper bike all to hell, then i'll drop the cash on a really nice Canyon bike.

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by NewBeeRider25 View Post
    What did you go with? I don't have the funds for a FS but I like to have a good ride... small drops, small jumps and up/downhill mix. I had a hardrock about 5 years ago and sold it to purchase my first fishing kayak but now I have upgraded my fishing kayak and want to purchase a new Mtb to have both. I did upgrade my hardrock shock with rockshocks before and would probably do that later down the road when I get it as a gift or maybe even buy some fox's. But for now what do you think?
    Depending on where you live, FS or HT may be the preference for the trails. You could surf through CL or Pink Bike and see if you can find a good deal on a used FS bike if your area has a mix of terrain. If you are testing the waters to see if you like the MTB scene, I would go for the rockhopper sport (assuming you don't find something interesting on CL or Pink Bike).

    Right now, I ride FS and it helps me out quite a bit. My body is beat to hell from military service and the only way I can ride my bike is utilizing a FS setup. My Rockhopper was a bit harsh on my body mostly because it was a hardtail. As mentioned, I rode it too aggressively and my body couldn't hack it.

    Seeing you cannot start your own thread just yet, you can private message me and I can give you more details on what I thought about the Rockhopper and what I ride now. The OP hasn't posted on here in a while and I don't want to thread jack him when he comes back
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