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.
Results 1 to 17 of 17
  1. #1
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    Please help with bike build/tweaking

    Hi everyone. So after a lot of advice I ended up getting the Dawes Haymaker 1500 from bikesdirect.com.

    I finally got it today and assembled it. I really like it, but have run into some problems. Here they are. First, how they heck do you adjust the disc brakes. Ive been trying and trying to make the brakes grip more, but they still are not grabbing very well. That I can deal with, but the second problem is a much bigger on that I can not handle.

    The gears. They are skipping or not changing at all. On the left hand gears when I am in gear one I can go through gear 1-5 with some ease, but they still do skip a little, but when I get to the 6th gear it gives me trouble and I cant get into the 7th or 8th gear.

    When Im in the 2nd gear on the left side (sorry, dont know if Im referring to that right), the chain is constantly rubbing on a metal gaurd next to the peddle (not sure if thats a problem, but definetely an annoyance that my last bike didnt have) and the gears 1 and 2 on the right side work, but the rest dont. I havent even tried the third gear on the left side.

    Can ANYONE give me some advice on how to start adjusting the brakes and gears? I can take it the my LBS to do a full tune up, but I would rather not have to because it cost about $100 and wont have that money for a couple of weeks. I greatly appreciate any help.

  2. #2
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    I'd say youtube and/or LBS is your friend right now. No offense but there's many things like the spokes, headset, ect that might need adjusting and it really doesn't sound like you have the skills and/or the tools necessary. Spend some time on you tube and hope you get it right and don't brake anything, or pay your LBS $50 to give it a once over.
    Good Luck with you're new bike.
    Round and round we go

  3. #3
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    Front Der: http://www.parktool.com/blog/repair-...ur-adjustments

    Rear Der: http://www.parktool.com/blog/repair-...nts-derailleur

    Check the other categories on the upper right.

  4. #4
    Fat-tired Roadie
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    I can tell you how I adjust my brakes, but they're a very different model from yours, so it wouldn't help you much.

    This article is overkill for what you're doing, but you can also use it as kind of a checklist.

    http://www.parktool.com/blog/repair-...-bike-assembly

    Read the manual for BB5s or BB7s on sram.com, and use that for your brakes - pretty close to the same procedure.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  5. #5
    Jacques-Pierre-Sebastien
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    Lbs is my suggestion. You could be spending many frustrating hours getting ur gears set up. Ask the ppl at the lbs if you can stay and watch them adjust your gears, this will help you in the future. As far as thebdisk brakes on the haymaker, they are difficult to adjust, if not gripping, turn the silver screw on the inside clockwise, it will tighten the grip.
    Lastly, walk into the shop, tell them you need help as younjustvstarted riding... Ask if they can check your bike out, they may charge you less than the full tune up as a favor to a newbie.
    Good luck, hope you get to ride your great deal of a bike soon!

  6. #6
    XC/Trail Clyde
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    Take it to the LBS and get a full tune done on that bad boy...
    Rockin Da Suburbz

  7. #7
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    The gears need a tune from your LBS. Go for a big ride when you've got that done to RUN IN your brakes. If they still aren't good enough, take to your LBS. If you cant wait for the brakes, sand your pads back with sandpaper, clean and put back in.

  8. #8
    DynoDon
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    Zinn & the art of Mountain Bike Maintenance is a great book, $15 to $25. It covers everything and then some. Youtube, Parktool.com too. Zinn is a great book to have, if Borders has any left they may be cheaper.. learning to do it yourself has many advantages. Happy Trails
    Four wheels transport the body,

    Two wheels transport the soul !!!!

  9. #9
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    Hey guys. Thanks for all the responses. A family emergency came up on Friday and I just got swamped. I knew I wasnt going to have the time to do all the research and to it myself in the coming week so I decided to just bite the bullet and take it to my LBS. My dad happened to be in town and he actually offered to pay for the tune up, which was really nice.

    So I took a half hour out of my day and took it to my LBS. First off, they looked it over and were blown away at the quality of the bike. The first guy I showed it to initially didnt believe how much I paid for it. It was actually kind of funny. He called another of the workers over and was having him look over it and he was just pointing this out on the bike that I had no idea about (I am still really new to biking). It really made me feel like I made the right choice with getting that bike.

    Well that was last Friday. They just called me a few minutes ago and it turns out that the bike did not need a full tune up at all. The guy said it essentially needed a "check up" and instead of the $95 they charge for a tune up, it was going to cost me $45. This is why even though I got a bike from bikes direct, if I ever have problems I will always go to my LBS. I trust them and their opinion. They were great to me when I originally bought a Giant and they were even great when I got a bike that wasnt from them.

    Again, thanks guys. I look forward to riding and I will probably be back here where I need help.

  10. #10
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    Well I am glad it worked out for you. I got the same reaction when I brought my Forge into the shop to get some work done on it. (Paid for by Forge). I am very glad every thing worked out for you. How is the fit? Did the bikeshop let you watch as they adjusted everything?

  11. #11
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    The fit is actually very nice. I havent picked up the bike yet and Ive only taken the bike for a quick test ride after I put it together (thats when I figured that the gears and such were all wrong) but the actual fit felt great. I also loved the lock feature of the front shocks. I can see that being very useful for the majority of my commute riding. I normally only go on offroad trails during the weekend so thats when I could open up the shocks. Unfortunately due to some family circumstances I wont be able to go on a full ride til Thursday at the soonest. Once I do though, I will post some more impression of my experience with the bike.

  12. #12
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    Now the real question. Does it feel better or worse then your last bike?

  13. #13
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    Honestly, I dont know yet. I think I will know that with my first full ride. I will be sure to let you guys know. The guys at the LBS seemed to think it was more in line with their bikes that were around the $700-$800 range. Which really surprised me. I cant tell you how much I look forward to having that first bike ride.

  14. #14
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    It shouldn't surprise you to much. Most LBS places buy their bikes at 1/2 MSRP. They are unable to sell them lower because of brick and mortar costs. In addition the manufactures generally enforce the MSRP price.

    Online manufacturers have a strong advantage when it comes to MSRP, Physical Costs, and Labor Costs.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by austanian View Post
    Most LBS places buy their bikes at 1/2 MSRP
    .
    Not true, markup is not 100% on bikes at a LBS. It's usually 60-70%.

  16. #16
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    Alright folks. I picked up my bike earlier then expected and took my bike for a ride. Not a long ride, onl about 1 1/2 to 2 miles. I can tell you right now, I absolutely love it. I think that its leaps and bounds better then my Giant Revel 2. It rides so smooth. My LBS did such a great job and I will continue to go to them. I will always recommended my LBS for bike work, but I dont think that I will ever have a problem recommending bikesdirect for bike purchases. I mean the bike is just phenomenal.

    About 1/2 mile from my house is a levy with some lite off road trails so part of my ride was on that. I unlocked the front shocks and the ride just felt awesome. I just cant believe how great this bike feels. On the street with the shocks locked it was just perfect as well.

    Im going to post on the original topic so that the people who recommended the bike know I really appreciate the recommendation, but to anyone who is seeing this for the first time, if you are looking at a good entry mountain bike, I really think that you cant go wrong with the Dawes Haymaker 1500 from bikesdirect.com.

  17. #17
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    I have one too!

    I bought the same bike about a month ago! I'm also new to MTB and 'real' bikes in general. So far I'm quite pleased with it. I simply wanted a decent bike with decent components and all I could find in the LBS's around here with comparable components were $700+. Being a DIYer all my life and a chronic research fanatic I bought from BD and did all the set-up work myself. I'm still chasing a squeak(I think it's a dust cover on the front hub), but everything else is fine. Set-up was pretty easy and straight forward. Tuning took me a little longer than a LBS mechanic could do it I'm sure, but it shifts smooth and cleanly.

    I actually have the wheels in the LBS right now getting trued after about 200 miles on them....and I ride every week in their shop ride. I'm loving this MTB thing! Single tracks are just plain fun and I must be crazy, but I love those rocky trails I've been riding!

    Congrats on your bike! I love mine too!

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