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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    New Bike Advice!!!

    I am new to the sport and I am currently looking for my first mountain bike. I will be riding in trails at least once a week. I have been using a friends 2009 Dawes Haymaker 1000 and is not that bad. I have done research and I am leaning to buy a known brand hard tail in one of my local stores. My budget is around $550. There are a lot of choices in my locals stores but I dont know if any of them is better than the other. So I need some advice. I really like the Jamis but dont know if is the best choice. What do you guys think.I currently have a Jamis road bike but I wont mind having another brand if there are better.
    Here are my choices

    Specialized Hardrock
    Jamis X3
    Felt Q520
    Trek 3900 Disk or
    Giant Rincon

    Thanks in advance

  2. #2
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    My advice for that price range is to look for a good used bike if you are going to riding a good deal of trails. Otherwise, you just have to ride them around and see what feels best. At that price range they are all going to be very similar in quality and features.
    Frank Webber | Orbea USA
    Customer Service | MTB Promotion

  3. #3
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    Thanks man!!! He is selling me the 2009 Dawes for $150. According to the site is my size. Should I just buy the used Dawes from him or are the other name brand bikes that much better than the Dawes?

    Thanks

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by lnc0321 View Post
    Thanks man!!! He is selling me the 2009 Dawes for $150. According to the site is my size. Should I just buy the used Dawes from him or are the other name brand bikes that much better than the Dawes?
    For what it's worth, I've been involved in mountain biking for about six years and been frequenting this forum for roughly that long, but I had never heard of a "Dawes" as a mountain bike brand. That could mean either that it's such a high-end and exclusive brand that I'm not yet "in the know" enough to have heard about it, or that it's a here-today-gone-tomorrow cheapo brand that's under the radar of serious bikers. I'll leave it up to you to guess which possibility is more likely, given the price you're talking about.
    Looking for local rides? You'll find plenty on my website: Bay Area Mountain Bike Rides.

  5. #5
    RideDirt
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    I like my hardrock , works for me

  6. #6
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    Dawes is a UK company that has probably been bought out, Looking like a Taiwan made bike now. (From what I am seeing in other forums) Looks like the bike (2009) is selling new for $350, with a list of $695. Shifters are low end, and with all the research I have done to find my first bike, I have never came across the fork that it has on it. (Capa T7) Nor do I know anything about it.

    If I was to get something off your list, I would look at the Hardrock personally. (was in the running for my first bike too) But then again all the specs look almost identical on all the bikes. Don't really know anything about the Fork on the Jamis either though.

    Price points....
    Jamis X3-$560
    Giant Rincon-$500
    Specialized Hardrock-$420 (If you go to Hardrock Disc it is the same but you get Disc Brakes for $520)
    Felt Q520-$550
    Trek 3900 Disc-$570

    So it really depends on what price you want, they are all pretty much equal. Nothing really changes good or bad on any of them. Other then the Hardrock having V-Brakes and you save money, unless of course you go Hardrock Disc. If Disc does not matter to you go with regular Hardrock for the same bike but cheaper.

    Looked again Cassette changes the Hardrock (7 speed) a little, where the others are 8 speed. IF that matters to you too.


    Good Luck!

    Oh I am new to this, so if anyone blasts me for a noob giving a noob advice. Feel free to agree or disagree with what I am saying. I would love to know what I said wrong, can only learn more that way.

    Brand new 2009 Dawes Haymaker 1000

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by RabEd Ewok View Post
    Oh I am new to this, so if anyone blasts me for a noob giving a noob advice. Feel free to agree or disagree with what I am saying. I would love to know what I said wrong, can only learn more that way.
    I think you're on the right track. While looking at the details of the component spec of a $350 mountain bike is little akin to checking the quarter-mile performance statistics of a Yugo, your conclusion is not unreasonable. I don't mean to sound too dismissive, but at that kind of a rock-bottom price range, you know that you'll essentially be getting a setup that's barely good enough to be functional, with no promises further than that.

    When looking at the Specialized, Giant, Jamis, and Felt options at the slightly higher price category, one could assume that the producers would at least be "embarrassed into" making sure they'd maintain a certain minimum quality level if only not to erode their brand prestige too much, because these are all brands that also feature high-end models in their product range costing up to many thousands of dollars. They'd be worried about how it would reflect on those high-end models (and impact their sales) if they also sell a 300-something-dollar bike that could split in two after a month of riding. I don't believe the same can be said about the Dawes brand, so who knows how "brave" they could have been with the quality standards of the component selection for their bikes...
    Looking for local rides? You'll find plenty on my website: Bay Area Mountain Bike Rides.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by erginguney View Post
    I think you're on the right track. While looking at the details of the component spec of a $350 mountain bike is little akin to checking the quarter-mile performance statistics of a Yugo, your conclusion is not unreasonable. I don't mean to sound too dismissive, but at that kind of a rock-bottom price range, you know that you'll essentially be getting a setup that's barely good enough to be functional, with no promises further than that.

    When looking at the Specialized, Giant, Jamis, and Felt options at the slightly higher price category, one could assume that the producers would at least be "embarrassed into" making sure they'd maintain a certain minimum quality level if only not to erode their brand prestige too much, because these are all brands that also feature high-end models in their product range costing up to many thousands of dollars. They'd be worried about how it would reflect on those high-end models (and impact their sales) if they also sell a 300-something-dollar bike that could split in two after a month of riding. I don't believe the same can be said about the Dawes brand, so who knows how "brave" they could have been with the quality standards of the component selection for their bikes...
    Thanks and agree!

    Dawes does have some expensive Road bikes, but other then that, don't know. Price (expensive) does not necessarily mean good parts or good quality.

  9. #9
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    Thanks Guys!!! Yea Dawes was bought by Bikes Direct. I am pretty sure is a frame made in Taiwan. I probably will buy the one that I get the best deal on. Again thanks for all your replies and I will let you know what I end up getting

  10. #10
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    Ohhh and one more question. Are all this frames all equally good? Are they ok frames to add good components later on?

    Thanks

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by lnc0321 View Post
    Ohhh and one more question. Are all this frames all equally good? Are they ok frames to add good components later on?

    Thanks
    Specialized and Giant are good, think I heard a blip about Jamis being pretty decent too. Not sure about Felt, and Trek has been doing it since 1976, so they must be doing something right, plus they sell a ton to boot...lol

    Yes all mentioned seem pretty good to add better components to later.

    Personally I would lean more to the Hardrock, since not only is it cheaper but, it has all the same components as the others. That is if you are ok with a 7 sp cassette, and V-Brakes.

    (Not that sales means good by any means, just saying)

  12. #12
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    Thanks again

  13. #13
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    Ride all the bikes, and come back with a shorter list.

    Bikes with 7-speed cassettes or V-brakes are less future-proof. They're likely to require replacing one or both wheels to switch to fancier parts.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrwSwitch View Post
    Ride all the bikes, and come back with a shorter list.

    Bikes with 7-speed cassettes or V-brakes are less future-proof. They're likely to require replacing one or both wheels to switch to fancier parts.
    Exactly what he told me, I listened and got a good bike that I love to ride!

    New to this but I also would like to agree with his second comment as well. Although I am absolutely loving my V-Brakes! No complaints as of yet, am really hitting the trails Sunday so we shall see.

  15. #15
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    Hey guys, thanks for all your help. I wanted to let you know that I finally got my new bike I visit a couple of LBS and tried some bikes. I also considered online shops but today I got a great deal that I couldnt refuse. I got me a 2011 Fuji Nevada 3.0 for $330 plus tax I am super excieted and I will be trying it tomorrow. Again thanks for all your help

  16. #16
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    Look around - I found a Specialized Stumpjumper FSR for $550 on Craigslist. A little older but works great - very light!

  17. #17
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    Nice bike, i was also looking at the Fuji models before i bought my Giant Revel 1. But me personally i would have went with disc brakes if it was me but other than that nice bike.

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