What bike for Central Florida, rider is 43 wants to put LazyBoy on seatpost
I have been riding since 1989 when I bought a Cannondale M500 and put spin wheels. Had a dozen bikes since then. Ten years ago I got out of Mtn biking and switched to road bikes. We moved close to Santos bike trail in Ocala Florida and really want to take advantage of it.
Now that I'm looking to get a bike again so much has changed. 26, 27.5, 29, Fat, and you can add Plus to any of those wheel sizes. Then there is all the drive train choices.
Bike buying mission: spend up to $2500 new or used. I liked the idea of Fatbikes so I rented one yesterday from Santos bike shop (great people btw), it was a rigid Salsa with 26x4" tires. not as cushy as I thought it would be, kept lowering the tire pressure and it helped. Now I think I have it narrowed to a new or used Fatbike with 4.5" tires, a Bluto and a cane creek seatpost. Or find a used 29er FS but I don't think they are as cushy with only 100mm travel. Was wondering is 140mm of travel with max tire size would help the comfort factor? Ocala bike trails are mostly fire roads and technical. at 43 I don't do big jumps just want to hit the blue and yellow trails.
Last edited by brycesail; 01-03-2016 at 11:50 AM.
Suspension is going to be cushier than tires, I'd look for something with 120mm of travel in a 29er.Go test ride some more bikes.
Thanks Ranger, I'm going to go rent a 29er next, and hit Santos again.
I have a fat bike and a 29erd hardtail. Both are fun, just different. Monster truck vs. sports car.
"a hundred travel books isn't worth one real trip"
couple things to think about:
full suspension isn't primarily about comfort. It helps, especially over the course of a long ride on rough terrain, but the primary objective is keeping the rubber in contact with the ground for traction in rough terrain.
For the comfort issue, focus on bike fit first. If you want more suspension to save yourself from as much rattling and jarring on a long ride, that's fine, but make sure the bike fits and is comfortable for you before you factor in the squishy bits.
For where you live, a fatbike (or any bike with bigger tires) will give you the ability to ride over loose sand. I've lived in a couple parts of the country where loose sand was a major factor on a lot of trails open for riding, and I sooooooooo wish I had a fatbike for those (I do now). I had varying results with my skinny-tired mtb's, depending on the situation. Basically, to have any kind of positive experience with skinny rubber on really sandy trails, I'd have to go ride in the rain when the moisture holds the sand together. If it was dry, it was awful.
Do you want to get out and ride hard and accelerate quickly and hammer? Or do you just want to get out and ride at a lower intensity?
Maybe a Thudbuster seatpost.
Try a 100-120mm full suspension 29, with 2.3 or so tires. There isn't enough deep sand at Santos until you get past the landbridge for a fatbike to be worthwhile. That being said, I've ridden everything east of the landbridge (trails, not the dirt jumps or stunts) on a hardtail with 2.1s, lots of people do, but it wouldn't be my first choice.
Worked at Trek/Fisher dealer 2008-2013. Only a little biased.
I've been to Santos with my 29er fully and had a ball. I have not been there with my fat bike yet but I ride it everywhere in NY and love it more than my 29er.
The cool thing about a fat bike is you can have a couple different sets of wheels and a Bluto and hit trails, beaches, whatever. Truly a Swiss army knife.
Some advice I started to give out after I rode one:
Look Into the new 27.5 Plus bikes, full suspension may be a budget reach for you but hey.
You get what you pay for.
The Scott I rode was really nice, It was the $3700 low end Genius plus, I missed my chance at riding a medium frame but got to ride a large, Stand over was kinda tight.
I am 5'11" 32" Inseam..
I got to ride in the woods, rode two fat bikes, the full squish Salsa and a hard tail specialized.
Fats are nice but I got tired of the big heavy wheels In short order.
As the speed came up going down hill the Hard Tail was a handful and the full squish Salsa was a fast, smooth but,,Fat, as In too much tire mass. I will admit I did not play much with the tire pressures.
The Genius 720 handled light and fast like my 27.5 x 2.35 tired full squish bike.
More traction was great, roll over was great, as they are almost 29er hoops.
Noticed no problem with added tire/wheel mass.
The Specialized stumpy fatty I have not yet ridden but I don't understand why they spec'd 30mm wide rims,, would It handle like 21mm wide rims with 2.35 wide tires ??
People are running 25-30mm rims for stability on 2.35 wide tires, so a 30mm rim with 3.0" wide tires on the stumpy ?
I don't like to buy what needs upgrading right out of the gate..
Specialized knows how to build great bikes just like Scott but I like the Sound of the 40mm wide rims and the lighter faster 2.8" wide tire/wheel combo on the Scott.
Seems to me It would be far more stable and more to modern riding Idea's...
So don't over look the plus bikes,, they are kinda new and as we all found out 27.5 turned out to be a great option and now accepted..
I now think of tire size as just another fit factor,,I just didn't fit the 29er hard tails made a few years back, had one, But I do know for me and my Central Florida riding going from fast rolling 2.25 wide tires to chunkier 2.35 wide tires made me faster and gave me much snappier handling.
So IMO another half Inch wider tire touting 20% MORE traction and control....
Yeah I found my next bike :P
“Get a bicycle. You will not regret it if you live.” Mark Twain
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