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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    Need a place to start

    You probably get this a lot, but my first post here is one looking for some recommendations.

    Right now I'm looking to spend about $800, but it is currently quite flexible. I'm 6'1" 170lbs. I've ridden mountain bikes my entire life but I have just moved to a state that actually has mountains and I left my old one at home.

    To be honest, 90% of my riding will most likely be on the road, I may even use it to commute to work in the summer, but I'd like it to be my weekend bike as well.

    Besides a list of the best bikes ideal for my needs, I'd appreciate some guidance as to what type of mountain bike, where to buy it, and any other beginner advice

  2. #2
    responsible zombie owner
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    I would recommend going up to the Trek 6 series. If most of your riding is on roads you won't want or need a full-sus bike (and your budget is more in line with getting a decent hardtail anway) and the Trek 6 series can handle a lot of rugged terrain.

    But most importantly you should try as many bikes as you can, of different brands and types (including 29ers etc) and above all find one that feels like it was made for you. If the bike doesn't fit you will not enjoy riding it.

    Remember to allow anything up to a couple of hundred dollars in your budget if you also need to get a helmet, shorts, gloves, jerseys, camelbak, multitool, pump, spare tubes etc. it all adds up.

  3. #3
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    internet resources of reputable sites

    Since you mentioned "flexible" I'm gonna be devils advocate and say don't be afraid to spend a little more; Try out dual susp as well, they can be quite fun off road tackling DH and switch backs. Although a hardtail can really help hone one's skill since it's not as forgiving.

    I found lots of review from mountain bike action magazine; many of their past reviews of different bikes are archived on their web sites. Bikeradar.com has a lot of info also. And of cors review from MTBR! Just have to take some individual review with a grain of salt.

    Lastly, I remember the 08 Giant trance X series kept coming in time and time again as a best bang per "pound" bike. I was actually looking at this one for quite awhile until I decided to blow my budget out of the water with a Santa Cruz.



    Quote Originally Posted by axiomata
    You probably get this a lot, but my first post here is one looking for some recommendations.

    Right now I'm looking to spend about $800, but it is currently quite flexible. I'm 6'1" 170lbs. I've ridden mountain bikes my entire life but I have just moved to a state that actually has mountains and I left my old one at home.

    To be honest, 90% of my riding will most likely be on the road, I may even use it to commute to work in the summer, but I'd like it to be my weekend bike as well.

    Besides a list of the best bikes ideal for my needs, I'd appreciate some guidance as to what type of mountain bike, where to buy it, and any other beginner advice

  4. #4
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    Thanks for the replies guys. I decided to hit up my local bike shop today over lunch for some info and browsing. The guy who helped me was a mountain bike racer and he had similar advice. He had me look at hardtail 29'ers (a Cannondale 29'er and a Specialized Stumpjumper 29er) and I think I like that direction. The bikes I saw were a little out of my price range (though they are tempting.)

    If you were looking for a 29'er with a slightly lower price tag than these where would you look?

    I've found the Specialized Rockhopper 29'er but the reviews seem to be a little iffy.

  5. #5
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    I managed to set my mind on the Specialized Rockhopper 29'er Disc but to my luck it is sold out in my area in my size (19").

    The Fisher Cobias and Cannondale 29'er 4's are similar and available but a little better hence a little out of my price range.

    Unless I get some other ideas I think I may have to wait for December sales on '08s and the 09's.

  6. #6
    jalopy jockey
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    29rs have a price premium over a comparable equipped 26r. They ride nice though. I have yet to make the plunge, Next off road ride fer sure.

    They key is find the right fit. A fisher vs a cannondale is a huge geometry/fit difference. When you find the bike that feels right you'll know thats the one that fits. Then get the most you can afford. If your gonna use it.

    last year this time we were shopping for bike for my wife her pricepoint was like 3 or 4 hundred. I talked her up to a Trek 4500. Was't enough this weekend we were just looking at new bikes for her. To the tune of 1500-2000.

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