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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    Where's the beef?

    Hello everyone. Been lurking for a while, first post...

    So I've been biking on trails recently on a gifted GT Avalanche 3.0, stock. The damn thing seems really heavy. But I weighed it today (bathroom scale, (bike + me) - (me)) and it came out to 30.8lbs. Now that seems relatively light, I keep seeing 35+ hardtails (AM thread for instance). I'm looking to pick up a new bike at the end of the summer, as this puppy is nearly beat (stock components are at least) and I think it's a little small for me. I see some very light bikes, and some heavier bikes, and it seems like the frame varies little between them. i.e. a 3lb frame built up weighs 23lb, vs. a 3.2lb frame built up weighs 28.5...
    Basically, I'm wondering where the weight comes from. Is there any place that gives a breakdown of various component weights? I thought it might be the fork, but I looked at like the Revelation 409 (U-turn: 4.0lbs) and the SID Race (2.9lbs), that's 1lb? I know these things compound, but what's often the heaviest component?
    What components would I look at to save some weight? Rims? Cranks? BB?

    Sorry if this is the wrong place to ask, but aside from some heavy spreadsheet action, which I'd hope someone else had done before, I dunno where to start.

    Thanks

  2. #2
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    You might have more luck in the weight weenie forum, but this is a good start.

    Seems most of the weight comes from the wheels, tires and fork. The other components don't weigh a lot on their own, so you can skimp in some areas, provided you remember a bunch of small amounts will become one big amount
    :wq

  3. #3
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    ...right, the weight weenie forum. of course. I need to lurk moar . Wheels make a lot of sense, they seem to vary up to 2-3lbs each, and x2, that's some weight right there. I'll cross-post this in that forum, but if anyone has more input here, I'd love to hear it.

  4. #4
    Bikecurious
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    Surprisingly tires can vary a lot in weight. Of course I realize there are a wide variety of materials and sizes that tires consist of, but I didn't expect to notice the difference so much. I was at bike shop the other day and was trying to decide between a folding kevlar bead tire, or the wire bead version. The folding tire weighs about 530g, while the wire bead weighs a little over 800g. Doesn't seem like much but when I picked them up I noticed a substantial difference. I figured I'd only feel a big difference in major components (steel vs carbon fiber, etc). Now I know 600g split between two tires won't add much overall weight to a bike (although it adds rolling resistance) its a good example of how the little things add up. But I don't really notice those things too much, I pay more attention to how effective my compnents are. So screw the extra weight if it makes my bike work better (and I'm 5'10" 120lbs, you'd think I'd be really concerned about weight at my size).

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by real_psyence
    Basically, I'm wondering where the weight comes from.
    I often wonder the same thing -- usually as I'm hefting a bare frame. It's amazing to me how very light just a frame can be, and yet the finished bike is so much heavier.

    You might visit this site:

    http://weightweenies.starbike.com/

    In particular, go to the "Listings" section where you'll find weights for different components.

    The thing with lighter components is that they tend to lighten your wallet as well .

  6. #6
    In dog years, I'm dead.
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    Quote Originally Posted by real_psyence
    Basically, I'm wondering where the weight comes from.
    It comes from that Big Mac, fries, & a shake 3 times a week.

    Seriously, you can pay twice as much for components to save a few pounds, or eat a more sensible (& probably less expensive) diet & get the same effect. And you'll probably be healthier to boot.
    Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might.... (Ecclesiastes 9:10)

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by burtronix
    It comes from that Big Mac, fries, & a shake 3 times a week.
    hahaha, indeed. I wouldn't mind losing a few pounds myself, at 5'11" and 175, i'm pretty good, but there's always room for improvement.

    Thanks for the link to that weight weenies site, it does have a bunch of good info, but can be hard to navigate at times and seems a tad outdated, but still better than nothing.

    Coming from what I know about motorsports, it definitely seems that unsprung weight (wheels, tires, brakes), basically everything that rolls contributes greatly to the feeling of weight, which makes sense given the method of acceleration/deceleration. Wheels and kevlar tires are probably where I'll start, because a good investment there can be used on whatever I purchase in the future.

    Another link I found helpful: http://www.light-bikes.com -- reading through the component list on the really light bikes in the galleries is pretty interesting. Not planning on spending many thousands right now, but it's good to know it's possible.

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