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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    Scott v Spec v Cannondale

    Hi, I'm new to the forum and I'm looking to get a new bike that I can take off road. At the moment I have a Scott hybrid but I want something I can throw around a bit more.
    I've got it down to these three:
    Scott, Scale 770 2014 Mountain Bike from only 699.00. Free UK Delivery | Wheelies

    Cannondale, Trail 29 4 2014 Mountain Bike from only 699.99. Free UK Delivery | Wheelies

    Specialized, Rockhopper Comp 2014 Mountain Bike from only 750.00. Free UK Delivery | Wheelies

    i've had a specialized bike before and had no problem with it but thought I'd get some advice as I like the look of the Cannondale.

    Anyone got any advice?

  2. #2
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    The 'X' series forks on the first two are designed for dirt roads and bike paths only. They just look like forks on the outside. If you can list choices without that series fork the comparison can go forward.
    The RHer has a low end but usable fork for riding trails.

  3. #3
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    For 600 the voodoo bizango has won a lot of awards and will be fine off road.

  4. #4
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    Re: Scott v Spec v Cannondale

    Knorr,

    If you intend to use mountain bike as a hybrid, put a set of Specialized FastTrak tires on it. I'm sure you will like how good it is both on the streets and on the trails.
    What works for me may not work for you. What's best for you depends on many factors. We are different from each other.

  5. #5
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    Hi, Thanks for the advice. eb: With regards to the forks
    until i get a bit more confident, bike paths and dirt roads will be where I'll be starting. mtb_beginner: Thanks for that, there will be a couple of months in the year where I'll just be going to work and back. So that's a good option.
    I think (95% certain) that I'm going to go with the Cannondale, but still have a week before i have to make my mind up

  6. #6
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    While of course you will be 'beginning' on bike paths and dirt roads the fun comes from riding on challenging trails with bumps and up and downhill sections.
    For those the fork on the C'dale will deter your confidence building completely. You won't get to this next level.
    The Voodoo Bizango mentioned has a Raidon air fork. This is a real fork with adjustable rebound. The 'X' forks are pogo sticks over multiple bumps- no adjustable rebound.
    It has 32mm stanchions. The 'X' flexy 28s- unstable through rocks and roots.
    The Raidon weighs 4.3lbs. vs. 6.2- harder getting over rocks when climbing.
    The 'X' has plastic bushings inside that will fail with offroad use vs metal.
    Inside the 'X' has a spring coated in grease. The Raidon has a maintenance free sealed oil damper like a car shock.
    One ride offroad on a trail ready bike like the Voodoo is usually all it takes to get hooked. The opposite for an 'X' bike.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by eb1888 View Post
    ... the fork on the C'dale will deter your confidence building completely. You won't get to this next level.
    I'm sure that fork is no worse than most of the ones most of us 'got to the next level' with for a bunch of years bitd. Hell, at one point, it would've probably been marketed as DH race-worthy. It's fine to start out with. Beat it to death, then upgrade as needed.

    As far as brand names, there's really not any major performance difference across them, specially at this price point. Buy the one that you feel will get you the most fired up to ride, for whatever reason.
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by slapheadmofo View Post
    I'm sure that fork is no worse than most of the ones most of us 'got to the next level' with for a bunch of years bitd. Hell, at one point, it would've probably been marketed as DH race-worthy. It's fine to start out with. Beat it to death, then upgrade as needed.
    Suntour makes it so their characterization will be accurate. It isn't a DH fork holdover from the old days.
    It has plastic bushings.
    But anyway... Suntour say it is...
    "RTR: Recreational trail
    Work out with your buddies: No rough terrain, no steep climbs or downhills! Just floating along the city river or through the forest behind your house."

    Basically bike path limited ... unless you ran dh back in the day.

    In North America Suntour offers an upgrade if a rider agrees to take that fork out of service. For $200 you can get ....the Raidon air fork on the Voodoo.
    Probably now also available in your market.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by eb1888 View Post
    Suntour makes it so their characterization will be accurate. It isn't a DH fork holdover from the old days.
    It has plastic bushings.
    But anyway... Suntour say it is...
    "RTR: Recreational trail
    Work out with your buddies: No rough terrain, no steep climbs or downhills! Just floating along the city river or through the forest behind your house."

    Basically bike path limited ... unless you ran dh back in the day.

    In North America Suntour offers an upgrade if a rider agrees to take that fork out of service. For $200 you can get ....the Raidon air fork on the Voodoo.
    Probably now also available in your market.
    Is the RTR and the XCR the same fork? Suntour puts the XCR under it's cross country forks on the website and I can't find the text you're citing. I've never had any experience with the XCR forks, but it seems like it's marketed at someone of the OPs level. If they stay interested and start outriding/wearing out the fork, they can upgrade to the Raidon for $200.

    That being said, the Voodoo does look rather nice and like a good deal compared to the others.

  10. #10
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    Since nobody has said it yet -
    Get a secondhand bike. If you've been maintaining your hybrid yourself, you pretty much know enough. And since you're interested in progressing to riding trails, IMO, a "real" fork is worth much more than new bike smell.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

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