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 7 of 7
  1. #1
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    santa cruz chameleon help

    Ok, here's the deal: I'm 14 and I and really serious about biking, and my dad is letting me spend my money on a new bike in about 4 months, since I want a better bike than my Trek 3900. I have $800 CAN, (will probably make more over the next few months) my dad will pay for $400 of it, and I can use the half back on my Trek which is about $200.What I want to know is if it is porssible to buy the Santa Cruz Chameleon frame, and gradually over a few months buy the parts and spend less than $1300, if I use moderately good components like a Shimano Alivio derailleur. Do you guys think it is possible?
    Plus, my LBS I got my Trek from only sells Treks,Gary Fisher, and Kona. A bike store that's maybe 30min away said he could sell me it for $650 CAN, so do you think that if I buy the frame at that store, my LBS will just let me use the halfback on $200 fork?

    Thanks in advance

    PS: is the chameleon a good, durable frame that'll last me a long time (i am pretty light) because I know I won't be able to get a new bike for a long time after this one, so it has to last a while...

  2. #2
    That Guy
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    Quote Originally Posted by alex923
    What I want to know is if it is porssible to buy the Santa Cruz Chameleon frame, and gradually over a few months buy the parts and spend less than $1300, if I use moderately good components like a Shimano Alivio derailleur. Do you guys think it is possible?
    Is that like a little under $900USD? You should be able to build it for less than that if you do some homework. It wont be a bombproof build, but it would get you riding at least. Online stores will have the parts cheaper than your LBS would for the most part, but still check your LBS and see what they have. A lot of times if I have a special order that never got paid for or picked up we will sell it instead of dealing with a return to the vendor, and are negotiable on price. Closeouts are always around as well. Older parts or color that didn't sell well are pretty good deals. Like XT front ders for $14.99. Remember there will be small parts costs that you may not think about. Cables/housing, spacers for the steerer tube, etc. little things like that add up.

    Quote Originally Posted by alex923
    ...so do you think that if I buy the frame at that store, my LBS will just let me use the halfback on $200 fork?
    I seriously doubt anyone here could possibly answer that. You would need to contact your LBS for that info. At my store trade-ins are only on kids bikes and are 50% of purchase price if they are traded in within 2 years and the value is credited towards the purchase of a NEW BIKE, not parts. But you may be able to negotiate something. Give it a shot, you won't know unless you ask.

    Quote Originally Posted by alex923
    PS: is the chameleon a good, durable frame that'll last me a long time (i am pretty light) because I know I won't be able to get a new bike for a long time after this one, so it has to last a while...
    Generally you will wear out or break everything on a bike before the frame fails. But the chameleon is a sweet frame. We had one in the shop this week. It looks very nice and is a versatile frame, depending on how you built it up.

    Why do you want that frame? if your on a limited budget why not buy a complete bike? It sounds like you wont be able to build it with the parts that you would really like. Generally, complete bikes are going to be a better value for your dollar. And you can upgrade as needed.

    just my $.02
    -jb

  3. #3
    Formerly DMR For Life
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    Unfortionately building up a bike...especially when you don't have a lot of experience...is a long process and you usally don't end up with what you want or if you do you end up paying way more for it. (trust me i found out the hard way)

    what type of riding are you looking at doing?

    cuz your not going to find a 6inch fork for 200 bucks unless they have really old stock

    maybe look into the norco sasquatch...similar bike less pricy

    DMR

  4. #4
    29er wannabe
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    Go for it.

    If you are anything like me, I would just do it and get what you really want the first time.

    Maybe your LBS has an older stock Kona Stuff they would be willing to part out with.(they keep the frame).

    Then transfer the parts over to the Chameleon.

    My LBS here in Victoria B.C. blow out last years bikes all the time, then deducting the price of the frame and paying the difference.

    Giv'er a try and tell the LBS that I said so !

  5. #5
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    Thanks guys, I'll definetly go to my LBS and talk to them. Just to let you know, I really kind of want a nice freeride hardtail. Any suggestions on good freeride hardtails that are around $1300 CAN? (I live in Ontario, so some American brands are not avaliable to me)

  6. #6
    Keepin' it real since '74
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    If you're looking for a good, cheap freeride frame, check out the Azonic steelhead. They're really solid steel frames, and can be had for little money. A friend of mine has one for DJing. I wish I would have gone with the steelhead over my Kona Scab.

    Jenson USA has the '06 steelhead frames for $342.
    http://www.jensonusa.com/store/produ...elhead+06.aspx
    "If God didn't want us to eat animals, He wouldn't have made them out of meat."

  7. #7
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    I am now wondering if I can just buy the Santa Cruz Chameleon frame, and ask my LBS if I can have them put all the parts from the Kona Stuff on it like Yagimax said (great idea ). Since I probably won't be getting my bike until early 2007, I wonder if I can get the parts from the 2006 kona stuff, because the fork looks cool.
    BTW, I'm not very big so I'm getting a 15" frame (or the frame around that size) if my LBS happens to have a leftover 2006 Kona Stuff 19" frame, would the parts still be compatible?

    PS: How much do you think the LBS would charge me for this switchy thing. (Price for all the components, cuz my dad doesn't want me to spend $1500)

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