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.
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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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    Questions about getting started

    Ive been riding motocross for about 6 years and am wanting to get a mtb to help with my training and to mix things up a bit. The problem is i dont know where to really start, so many frame sizes and brands of bikes...im looking for something fairly cheap but also pretty sturdy.
    Would be great if I could get some tips/pointers as to where to start.

    Im 5' 7", 145 lbs...plan on doing lots of jumping, trails, freeriding, and maybe some downhill and even street riding.
    Do i need a small or medium sized bike for my size? or any other suggestions would be greatly appreciated! thx in advance for any ideas!

  2. #2
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    To begin, welcome. I came to the sport just like you back in the late 1990s. Additionally, I'm an inch taller but about the same weight so I can speak on your frame size question.

    For me mediums from most brands see mto be a perfect fit. Of course I mention the phrase "most brands" because you'll find that some company's definition of small, medium, and large varies greatly. The best thing to do is get the measurment (in inches) of the top tube; which is often considered the general measurment of the bike's size. 17 inches fits me quite well.

    The best thing to do is to check out various brands your considering ahead of time (to see what feels right to you). The online brands (Ibex, Woodstock) seem run where you would expect- meaning I've had success with mediums from both.
    Ever been to Mountain Bike Tales Digital Magazine? Now if only the print rags would catch on!

  3. #3
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    thanks for clearing that up, a local guy was telling me a small or medium would probably suit me best, i think i will lean towards the medium side like you said.

    To be honest i am looking to spend under $500 for a decent bike, due to most of my funds going to MX. Is this something you think i could accomplish?

  4. #4
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    For all those things...you're gonna need a heck of a lot of bikes..

    A dirtbike would do those...but that's not as much fun!

    Figure 2,000 for a DH bike, (assuming new) so you might want to scratch that..

    Street, well you can do that on any kind of bike, not necessarily successfully, but you can, so you'd want a hardtail.

    Jumping, if your butt is up to the challenge if you make a mistake and relax your knees too much on landing..

    Freeriding should be scratched as well, unless you want to build a hardtail freeride bike, which will work for most things, but be too heavy and inefficient for trail and street and jumping..

    An All Mountain bike would suit most of your needs, but a full susser would be a bit heavy for trails and street..

    Basically, what's your priority?

    You're not going to get all that stuff in one bike, and especially not for 500 dollars.

    Unless you buy used, you're probably only going to be able to jump, ride trails, and ride on the street with that budget.

    Also, full suspension is out of the question at that pricepoint. Get your heart set on a hardtail

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by KingCrimson
    For all those things...you're gonna need a heck of a lot of bikes..

    A dirtbike would do those...but that's not as much fun!

    Figure 2,000 for a DH bike, (assuming new) so you might want to scratch that..

    Street, well you can do that on any kind of bike, not necessarily successfully, but you can, so you'd want a hardtail.

    Jumping, if your butt is up to the challenge if you make a mistake and relax your knees too much on landing..

    Freeriding should be scratched as well, unless you want to build a hardtail freeride bike, which will work for most things, but be too heavy and inefficient for trail and street and jumping..

    An All Mountain bike would suit most of your needs, but a full susser would be a bit heavy for trails and street..

    Basically, what's your priority?

    You're not going to get all that stuff in one bike, and especially not for 500 dollars.

    Unless you buy used, you're probably only going to be able to jump, ride trails, and ride on the street with that budget.

    Also, full suspension is out of the question at that pricepoint. Get your heart set on a hardtail
    Cant disagree with anything there.

    You're gonna want to increase that as much as possible - within sensible restrictions you're gonna want a hardcore hardtail probably, if you can afford one which is good enough to survive abuse - if not, you might as well stick with XC hardtails, and concede that you're gonna have to hold back on the FR/DH/DJ for the time being.

    You're along way from decent fullsus money - ideally to get any choice and a bike worth riding, you're gonna want to spend 2, probably 3 times that much.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by EnglishT
    Cant disagree with anything there.

    You're gonna want to increase that as much as possible - within sensible restrictions you're gonna want a hardcore hardtail probably, if you can afford one which is good enough to survive abuse - if not, you might as well stick with XC hardtails, and concede that you're gonna have to hold back on the FR/DH/DJ for the time being.

    You're along way from decent fullsus money - ideally to get any choice and a bike worth riding, you're gonna want to spend 2, probably 3 times that much.
    So you look for ways to disagree with me now?

    Actually, you made me read up about single pivots and why they're inferior. 1 less suspension ignorant SS'er thanks to you!

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by KingCrimson
    So you look for ways to disagree with me now?

    Actually, you made me read up about single pivots and why they're inferior. 1 less suspension ignorant SS'er thanks to you!
    Haha not at all.


    Well designed single pivots arent neccessarily inferior - perhaps limited in how far you can go with the design, but some are very good bikes - for example the Superlight, Hecker, Bullit - to name a few from just one manufacturer, there are others out there.
    What I effectively said in the other thread is that a single pivot "a-la walmart" design is inferior to something properly designed - its not fair to compare that bike with a SC Superlight for example - the (clear) difference between a poorly and a well executed singlepivot design.

  8. #8
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    i should have explained better but im not looking to get into any one kind of riding really. Not even sure if i would do any downhill stuff or freeriding, just looking for an all around bike i can do a little bit of jumping and have fun. My main goal is to get the heart pumping for some good endurance and lower body training.

    So far im thinking a medium (17") hardtail to start, im looking at used bikes so i guess any good deal i can get will fit me well.

    tell me what you think about this one??

    http://phoenix.craigslist.org/evl/bik/784162234.html

  9. #9
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    EDIT

    No, it's a fishy Fisher. No front brake, stripped frame.

    I'd say nay, it's just too weird. You could go check it out, but personally I wouldn't buy it.

    It would have no warranty due to the lack of paint, and the forks aren't great..

  10. #10
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    Very dodgy. Look elsewhere.

  11. #11
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    thx guys i wasnt sure.... i will keep looking

  12. #12
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    I would say that you're definitely on the right path in accepting a hardtail and not descriminating in possibly buying used. So many beginners want it all for very little coin and that's the forumla for disaster.

    If your on a really tight budget, this bike (Forge Sawback 5xx) somehow defies all pricing structures for its spec sheet:

    http://www.forgebikes.com/saw5sl.asp

    It's $319 new from Target:
    http://www.target.com/Forge-Sawback-...292549-0465732

    Good luck!
    Ever been to Mountain Bike Tales Digital Magazine? Now if only the print rags would catch on!

  13. #13
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    Wow! That's a pretty sweet deal!

    If only it were steel!

    Only kidding. I'd like to try one out at that price and spec.

  14. #14
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    Funny you should post this. I got offered an 05 TTR-125 for $500, it's in good shape and rides nice. I haven't taken it out on the track yet. So I might be getting into MX for cheap.

    Look at hardtails like everyone else has said.. I haven't had many problems jumping my rockhopper down a steps, curbs, dirt jumps and anything the XC trails have thrown at me. The wheels have been trashed in 6 mos, but stock wheels in this price range tend to suck anyways.

  15. #15
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    that forge sawback just might do the trick and get me started. thx slim for tha help

    $500 bucks for an 05 ttr is real cheap, youll have a blast on it

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