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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    Good job! New guy from BMX into MTB

    I'm new to this forum, but not at all new to forums in general. I'm 24, and don't have a mountain bike. I rode BMX for the majority of my teenager years. City stuff, stairs, rails, benches and ledges. With the occasional trip to some where with dirt jump. I haven't avidly ridden a bike in probably 3-4 years. But I want to get back into riding, but not BMX.

    I rented a bike over the weekend and rode some trails in the area. Had a great time, and am hooked as I expected. Only issue was the bike that I rented felt way too big for me. I don't know anything about it besides it was a 29er and the tag they had on it read $2099. I believe it was a Scott. Either a 19 or 21.

    I've done quite a bit of research and at this point I know I need to just go ride some bikes at the bike store and maybe get sized. My price range is somewhere under $750. I know myself well enough to know whatever I get will end up getting upgraded when stuff breaks or gets worn, or doesn't suit me. So I'm ok with having to make some upgrades as I progress.

    I plan on riding trails with it, single track i guess would be what we have in the Delaware area.

    I found a used Raleigh on CL and have been talking to the seller and he's willing to let me ride it on a trail. I've been told its a 6-8 year old bike and that's the only info I got. Looks like a clean bike, but I have no idea what it's worth. Was wondering if I got it at 300$ that was a fair price? If I even liked riding it that is.

    Nice Raleigh Mountain Bike

    Or do I just spend a little more to start on something that is actually fitted to me and up to modern specs? Any suggestions for a guy who's coming from riding little BMX bikes? Sorry for the typical question... Hope some one is willing to help!

  2. #2
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    So from your background I'm gonna pretty much assume you've got a decent level of comfort wrenching on a bike and also have a good idea of how you prefer a bike to feel and handle in general. At your price range, I'd lean strongly towards find a good deal on a used bike, but if you think it's something you're going to approach on more than a casual level (which I'd expect if you were into riding street; your handling skills are gonna be much higher than a 'typical' beginner, and you're probably going to demand more from your bike in it's first few rides than many riders ever do), I would be looking at the top of your budget.

    As far as 29ers, even coming from a lot of time on 26" wheels, let alone 20", they just feel wonky to me in general, specially the lower end ones. You're money is going to go a lot farther on a 26, and I'd be willing to bet it's going to feel better to you.

    That Raliegh doesn't look like a bad deal for the price. You can get a good idea of used values for specific bikes here:

    Bicycle Blue Book - Used Bikes

    I scanned the Deleware CL ads and it's kind of a vast wasteland as far as bikes at the moment. Any shops in your area deal in pre-owned bikes? Or possibly any local riding or trail advocacy groups that have a website with a 'for sale' forum?
    Sinister Bikes
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  3. #3
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    Thanks for the info! Yea there's a few local shops in the area, but I haven't checked them out aside from waking around looking at the shiny new bikes. And I've checked the Imba Delaware/Maryland chapter website and looked at some classifieds and I didn't see anything that peaked my interest. There's definitely not much in the Delaware Craigslist right now. A 26er is probably what I'll end up trying to look at, wether new or used. Plus everything I read is that if you buy a new 26er, you can usually get it with higher end parts compared to a base model 29er at a similar cost.

  4. #4
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    Hey man, a lot of us come from a BMX background. I recommend getting a 26" bike personally, probably a hardtail to make the transition easier. The right bike will feel as playful as a 20" BMX and you will be able to rip trails on it.

    I just got my girlfriend a 27.5" hardtail and it is the most "BMX" feeling bike i've ridden in a long time. It's so damn fun coming from my full suspension. In an ideal world i'd have a rigid, hardtail, FS trail bike, AND a gravity rig. However, i only have one bike right now (other than my old BMX), and it's been treating me well.

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