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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    Thinking about buying from Bikesdirect

    Anyone know if the gravity 29 point 2 would be a good first serious mtb? it's $549 and has deore derailers, avid bb5 brakes, a rockshox dart 3 fork, and alivio shifters, which are great components for the price, but I don't know if the frame is any good. I'm not sure who makes the frame, as gravity is a bikesdirect brand, hence the cheap price. I've heard rumors that they're made by kinesis, but I can't tell. They do have a resemblance to expensive walmart frames, but they use a different headset and the tubes seem to be different. Also, what size would be better, 19" or 21"? I'm 5'11" and growing.
    Thanks for the help, Nick

  2. #2
    RideDirt
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    Get fitted at your local bike shop so you know what size frame you need . Then buy a bike while your there

  3. #3
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    One thing to keep in mind with the BD bikes and their low prices is that you are not getting the bike-shop build and post-sale service which shed ~$100-$200 off their prices compared to a bike shop. A shop bike with similar components should be around $750. Just email BD and ask about sizing; they seem to be able to tell most people what they will ride based on a few measurements. These bikes look pretty good and I am sure the frame is no better/worse in terms of quality than what you will buy for <$1000 at a shop. With the 29er, you don't want to buy big just to grow into it; the bike will be huge and hard to handle on the trails. At your height 19" seems about right.
    Geologist by trade...bicycle mechanic (former) by the grace of God!

    2012 Specialized Stumpy EVO 29 HT

  4. #4
    DynoDon
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    You'll have to pay to adjusts the bike if you don't have the know how, and tools, its alway good stuff to know, tools pay for themselves in the long run, youtube, parktool.com, and a good book like Zinn & the art of Mountain Bike Maintenance.
    If this all sounds like too much, its a good time to buy a bike at the LBS with the 2012s coming in, demo bikes are a great deal with full warranties, tune ups, discount on shop purchases too. You will need tools, clothes, shoes, etc. the starter bike is about half the cost of riding. Sure you can buy most things online, but helmets, gloves, shoes, clothes are best tried on, so the discount on store purchases for a year is something to consider too.
    Good Luck
    Four wheels transport the body,

    Two wheels transport the soul !!!!

  5. #5
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    You may want to look at jensonusa.com. Name brand bikes, good prices. They say the bike is "pro built" however I did need to take my Jamis (which i purchased from Jenson) to my LBS for some final adjustments. Bars needed to be torqued to spec, issue with rear derailleur out of alignment etc. Not too bad. Cost was $39.00. To me worth the savings buying online.

    I do support LBS> I bought my pump, gloves etc from them.

    Personally if you have an idea about frame size Jenson is a good deal especially on older models. My Jamis is an o9.

    Either way you go, have fun.

  6. #6
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    If you have a Trek dealer nearby, you can try out the Marlin as a fitment guide for the Gravity 29.2 since the geometry is nearly identical. The only difference between a Marlin and a 29.2 is 0.2 degrees difference in the head tube angle and the Marlin uses the G2 proprietary fork offset. These things may have a slight effect on handling but should make no difference at all in proper fit.
    Quote Originally Posted by STT GUY View Post
    Screw the search function... you're new, ask the question(s). If anyone gets thier undies in a bunch it's thier problem.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crash Test Dumby View Post
    If you have a Trek dealer nearby, you can try out the Marlin as a fitment guide for the Gravity 29.2 since the geometry is nearly identical. The only difference between a Marlin and a 29.2 is 0.2 degrees difference in the head tube angle and the Marlin uses the G2 proprietary fork offset. These things may have a slight effect on handling but should make no difference at all in proper fit.



    Yeah and when you go into the LBS to test fit bikes make sure you tll them that your going to buy one online, that your just there to get proper sizing, you have no intentions of buying a bike from them. And yes I neg repped you for that advice.

  8. #8
    AZ
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crash Test Dumby View Post
    If you have a Trek dealer nearby, you can try out the Marlin as a fitment guide for the Gravity 29.2 since the geometry is nearly identical. The only difference between a Marlin and a 29.2 is 0.2 degrees difference in the head tube angle and the Marlin uses the G2 proprietary fork offset. These things may have a slight effect on handling but should make no difference at all in proper fit.



    Why punk the LBS?

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by floydlippencott View Post
    Yeah and when you go into the LBS to test fit bikes make sure you tll them that your going to buy one online, that your just there to get proper sizing, you have no intentions of buying a bike from them. And yes I neg repped you for that advice.
    Quote Originally Posted by AZ.MTNS View Post
    Why punk the LBS?
    Yes, and I am ghe first person in the history of MTBR to give this advice right? Hell no, I read this same advice multiple times a day, try out bikes at the LBS to determine proper fitment before buying online. Floyd, your neg rep is not surprising at all since it is abvious you hate BD and everyone who buys from them. Only thing I can't understand is why the heck you even bother to read a thread that cleerly states its about BD bikes. Id give you some rep back but your not worth it.
    Quote Originally Posted by STT GUY View Post
    Screw the search function... you're new, ask the question(s). If anyone gets thier undies in a bunch it's thier problem.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crash Test Dumby View Post
    Yes, and I am ghe first person in the history of MTBR to give this advice right? Hell no, I read this same advice multiple times a day, try out bikes at the LBS to determine proper fitment before buying online. Floyd, your neg rep is not surprising at all since it is abvious you hate BD and everyone who buys from them. Only thing I can't understand is why the heck you even bother to read a thread that cleerly states its about BD bikes. Id give you some rep back but your not worth it.


    No I don't hate people that buy from BD, hate is such terrible thing. I do however do not like someone that would openly advocate "punking" the LBS, a practice that is so low and underhanded, but coming from you I should not be surprised. And please don't use the excuse that " I read this same advice multiple times a day ", that just attempts to diffuse responsibility for ones actions. You posted it, man up and own it.

  11. #11
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    Whatever Floyd, like I said, not worth my time. You decided you don't like me and will neg rep me every time you can so....................
    Quote Originally Posted by STT GUY View Post
    Screw the search function... you're new, ask the question(s). If anyone gets thier undies in a bunch it's thier problem.

  12. #12
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    OH noes! I got neg repped, I don't know how I will go on. Go ahead, be punks and punk the LBS.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crash Test Dumby View Post
    If you have a Trek dealer nearby, you can try out the Marlin as a fitment guide for the Gravity 29.2 since the geometry is nearly identical. The only difference between a Marlin and a 29.2 is 0.2 degrees difference in the head tube angle and the Marlin uses the G2 proprietary fork offset. These things may have a slight effect on handling but should make no difference at all in proper fit.


    IMHO, you would have to be a tool of the highest magnitude to pull some sleazy crap like this.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crash Test Dumby View Post
    If you have a Trek dealer nearby, you can try out the Marlin as a fitment guide for the Gravity 29.2 since the geometry is nearly identical. The only difference between a Marlin and a 29.2 is 0.2 degrees difference in the head tube angle and the Marlin uses the G2 proprietary fork offset. These things may have a slight effect on handling but should make no difference at all in proper fit.
    Spoken like a true noob. A 0.2 degree head tube angle combined with the G2 offset makes a HUGE difference in the handling of the bike. The reach would be similar but the Marlin would destroy the Gravity when you got them out on the trail.

    aedubber gave you the right advice. Go to a bike shop, then get a bike at a bike shop.
    Don't you hate it when a sentence doesn't end the way you think it octopus?

  15. #15
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    I got my first bike from bikes direct. Everything was already setup. Only things to assemble were the front wheel, bars, pedals and seat.

  16. #16
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    Ever wonder why so few people who've been riding for a while buy BD bikes when they decide they want a new bike or frame?

    I don't.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by floydlippencott View Post
    OH noes! I got neg repped, I don't know how I will go on. Go ahead, be punks and punk the LBS.
    Wasn't me, like I said, you're not worth it.
    Quote Originally Posted by STT GUY View Post
    Screw the search function... you're new, ask the question(s). If anyone gets thier undies in a bunch it's thier problem.

  18. #18
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    No good bd

    is it worth saving a few bucks to be a tool. find a good lbs in your area and support them with your buisness. i agree bd sux.

  19. #19
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    At the 500 dollar price range absolutely. You will not find a good bike at an LBS shop. If he wants a 29er he will end up with Atlus level components, a worse fork, and worse breaks.

  20. #20
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    Go to a LBS, tell them how much money you have and the bike you want to buy online and ask them if they can get you an equal or better deal. They'll show you some bikes and you can get an idea of what size bike you need and nobody will have to see Ashton Kutcher pop out of the woodwork.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrwSwitch View Post
    Ever wonder why so few people who've been riding for a while buy BD bikes when they decide they want a new bike or frame?

    I don't.

    yes, i wonder. unless this was a rhetorical question?

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by aedubber View Post
    Get fitted at your local bike shop so you know what size frame you need . Then buy a bike while your there
    Well said, especially the first answer. I'd rep ya but I just did not too long ago gotta wait so you are on my hit list

  23. #23
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    It was a rhetorical question, but I guess I don't mind answering.

    When someone buys a first bike, buying from a shop actually does add some value. Test-riding several different bikes is very important, starting with a bike that has everything tuned properly makes it much easier to learn to maintain the bike, and a ton of people end up paying their LBS quite a lot of money to set up their BD bikes. So the savings disappear.

    When someone buys a second bike, it tends to be more expensive. One of my teammates actually did go with BD for that - with a good reference bike, I think buying a bike from the geometry chart is not a bad strategy. But there are a lot of really beautiful frames floating around the 'net for not much money, so there's no reason to go with BD either. I already have a mental list of a few hardtail frames I'd love to upgrade to if I had some more money to throw around.

    If someone's buying a second bike in a different class from the first, he's really back to square one as far as ride feel. And, I don't know that I trust an internet discounter to sell me a FS frame that's actually competitive with the branded ones. As I ride more FS bikes, I realize more and more that finding the right one is something I'm going to need to do by riding them, and maybe even with timed laps.

    That said, I might buy a disposable bike from BD - like if I needed to replace my commuter and didn't want to deal with Craig's List to do it.

    EDIT: Also, take BD's MSRPs with a grain, or tablespoon, of salt. Nobody else sells them and if you take the time to compare builds with retail bikes, you'll find that usually a retail bike with that build would run significantly less than the MSRP BD comes up with. I do think they still cost less than the retail bike would. Just not by as much as they'd have you believe.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrwSwitch View Post
    It was a rhetorical question, but I guess I don't mind answering.

    When someone buys a first bike, buying from a shop actually does add some value. Test-riding several different bikes is very important, starting with a bike that has everything tuned properly makes it much easier to learn to maintain the bike, and a ton of people end up paying their LBS quite a lot of money to set up their BD bikes. So the savings disappear.

    When someone buys a second bike, it tends to be more expensive. One of my teammates actually did go with BD for that - with a good reference bike, I think buying a bike from the geometry chart is not a bad strategy. But there are a lot of really beautiful frames floating around the 'net for not much money, so there's no reason to go with BD either. I already have a mental list of a few hardtail frames I'd love to upgrade to if I had some more money to throw around.

    If someone's buying a second bike in a different class from the first, he's really back to square one as far as ride feel. And, I don't know that I trust an internet discounter to sell me a FS frame that's actually competitive with the branded ones. As I ride more FS bikes, I realize more and more that finding the right one is something I'm going to need to do by riding them, and maybe even with timed laps.

    That said, I might buy a disposable bike from BD - like if I needed to replace my commuter and didn't want to deal with Craig's List to do it.

    EDIT: Also, take BD's MSRPs with a grain, or tablespoon, of salt. Nobody else sells them and if you take the time to compare builds with retail bikes, you'll find that usually a retail bike with that build would run significantly less than the MSRP BD comes up with. I do think they still cost less than the retail bike would. Just not by as much as they'd have you believe.

    That's spot on Andrew I don't have anything against the BD hardtails. It's not for newbies because the reasons you've mentioned. There's nothing wrong with buying from BD if you know what you want and what you get from the deal. It's not all it hype up to be, sure there's some fancy parts thrown in the mix to sweeten the package but read the fine print and spec sheet, it's not that great of the deal it's about a fair price at best.

    I too would not mind getting one like a SS 29er disc for $300 shipped and turn it into a SS crossbike.

  25. #25
    RideDirt
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    Quote Originally Posted by mimi1885 View Post
    Well said, especially the first answer. I'd rep ya but I just did not too long ago gotta wait so you are on my hit list
    Just trying to preach what I learned from this forums , for me it was a no brainer , lifetime free tune ups , onsite help and experience , face to face business , 10% off accessories purchased , and help support a local shop as they help us as well . I was in the same boat as you OP and I'm extremely happy with my local purchase , ya I might have low end things on the bike , but I can also upgrade anything I want and it's my first bike to learn as well . I'll hit u back with some rep Mimi

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