Results 1 to 11 of 11
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    7

    Jamis Dakota - Which one?

    Hello everyone,

    First time poster. New to mountain biking but have been riding a friends old Scott mountain bike on singletrack trails in western Washington state and I feel like I want my own bike now.

    A family friend owns her own bike shop but the only major brand she carries is Jamis. She specializes in road and commuter bikes but is willing to order and build me any Jamis bike for 10% over cost. So my budget could get me a nicer Jamis bike than any other brand. I've narrowed my choices down to a few Dakota models.

    1) Budget: (USD)$1000.
    2) Bikes I'm considering and the price from friends store (prices include shipping but not tax).
    2009 Jamis Dakota Comp - $957.60
    2009 Jamis Dakota Sport - $739.80
    2008 Jamis Dakota Comp - $826.20
    2008 Jamis Dakota Sport - $640.00 (price from JensenUSA, I think no sales tax).

    I've never bought a bike online before so I'm a little leery of that but any advice would be appreciated.

    3) Type of riding - Mainly singletrack and possibly cross country. Not much road riding because I already have a flatbar road bike.
    4) Hardtail or Full Suspension: For my price point and riding preferences, a quality hardtail that will still be good years from now as my skills improve and that is worth upgrading is best.
    5) Age, weight and height: 30 years old, 5'9", 170lbs. Avid basketball player.
    6) Shopping sources: Would prefer LBS but willing to consider others too.
    7) Alternative suggestions: yes, please.

    I'm leaning towards the Dakota Comp because of the better fork and the carbon fiber monostay, but at the same time, the 2008 Dakota Sport from JensenUSA bike for $640 shipped is pretty tempting.

    Any advice, please?

    neneboricua

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    2,496
    After years of spending lots of money upgrading bikes I have come to the conclusion that you should buy the best bike that you can afford. Buying a lower end bike and then upgrading will cost way more than just buying the better bike to begin with. And if you are going to be doing any kind of real trail riding you will definitely appreciate the higher end stuff. Basically I am saying go for the 2009 Comp. I owned a 2006 Dakota Elite with the carbon stays, and I loved it, it was a great bike.
    2012 On One Whippet 650b
    2012 Santa Cruz TRc 650b
    2014 On One Dirty Disco
    2010 Soma Groove
    1987 Haro RS1

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    328
    smith is right buy a complete bike and upgrade as needed like when something breaks oe wears out. and wait for the 2010 jamis dakota bikes they are gonna be 10 times nicer and better components on them than the 2009 models plus the 2010 frames have a new geometry and way better paint scemes trust me ive seen the 2010 jamis catalog and the new jamis bikes will give any other bike a real run for the money.

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    7
    Thanks ljsmith and roscoe. I see what you guys mean about getting as good a bike as you can from the beginning because upgrading is more expensive in the long run. That's why I'm looking to get something like a Dakota and not a strictly entry-level hardtail.

    You've seen the 2010 Jamis catalog?? I've searched all over the net and haven't found much at all. Any ideas as to when they're coming out?? Could my dealer friend already have the info on the new models? The most important question of all: if the parts on the 2010 Dakotas are a lot better, have the bikes gone up in price or are they keeping the same price points?

    neneboricua

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    21
    I went to my LBS and he had the 2010 catalog and the Dakota Comp is called the Race but other than that he said nothing much changed other than the price went up by 75 dollars. Didn't mention geometry or much better components.

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    7
    Hmm. So now I wonder which way it is. Are the 2010's pretty much the same as the 2009's or not? Either way, maybe I should wait until the 2010's come out and that way the 2009 will be cheaper anyway? On the one hand, I'm getting an itchy trigger finger about getting the bike, but on the other hand, if I wait a few weeks or a month or so, I could save a few hundred $$... Gaaahhhh!! Decisions!!

    neneboricua

  7. #7
    mtbr member
    Reputation: borregokid's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    2,586
    I dont think you are going to save any money by waiting. If its like last year the prices went up and part quality went down. A lot of the pricing depends on currency exchange rates. If you have the money then go with the 2009 Dakota Comp. I would also throw the Jamis Dragon steel frame bike into the mix in that price range. I think the softer ride that the steel frame would offer might be worth looking into. The Dragon when the day comes to sell the bike I think will retain more of its value and its a good frame to upgrade parts but thats my opinion.

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    834
    Quote Originally Posted by borregokid
    I dont think you are going to save any money by waiting. If its like last year the prices went up and part quality went down. A lot of the pricing depends on currency exchange rates. If you have the money then go with the 2009 Dakota Comp. I would also throw the Jamis Dragon steel frame bike into the mix in that price range. I think the softer ride that the steel frame would offer might be worth looking into. The Dragon when the day comes to sell the bike I think will retain more of its value and its a good frame to upgrade parts but thats my opinion.
    agree. plus, the '09 Dakota Comp and '09 Dragon Comp have the same msrp. I believe the steel frame Dragon will have the more comfortable ride.

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    7
    Quote Originally Posted by older guy
    agree. plus, the '09 Dakota Comp and '09 Dragon Comp have the same msrp. I believe the steel frame Dragon will have the more comfortable ride.
    Hmm. Interesting. The main differences seem to be that the Dragon Comp uses a Rock Shox Tora SL while the Dakota Comp uses a Rock Shox Recon Race. As I understand it, the Recon Race is the higher-end shock. Also, the Dakota has the carbon fiber monostays while the Dragon doesn't. But I'm guessing that since the Dragon is a steel frame, it doesn't need the carbon fiber monostays? I read a review about the womens version of the Dakota Comp that said the carbon fiber monostays helped reduce some of the bumps of a trail more than even some dualies.

    Bigger question is how do steel and aluminum compare when it comes to mountain bikes? I'm new to the sport and it seems that most bikes are made of aluminum with the high-end bikes made of carbon fiber but I don't see many made of steel. What advantages does one have over the other? Weight-wise steel and aluminum seem about the same. Is one more durable or longer-lasting than the other? I understand that steel can bend somewhat so it can produce a softer ride by absorbing some minor road buzz on longer rides, but on a trail that would seem to be a moot point since the bumps are so much bigger. I've also heard that since aluminum is more rigid, it is better at transfering more of the power you generate while pedaling into forward motion. Not sure if this is some kind of touchy subject like comparing Ford to Chevy, but I just truly want to know.

    neneboricua

  10. #10
    mtbr member
    Reputation: borregokid's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    2,586
    Aluminum hardtails tend to have a harder ride than steel or titanium. I dont know how much carbon fiber monostays or rear stays soften the ride. I know Giant uses cf stays on their XTC Alliance. 20 years ago everyone started going to aluminum frames because of weight with the high end bikes. But over the years the steel manufacturers like True Temper and Reynolds have been able to cut the weight down so its almost as light as aluminum. I always like the feel on my old road bike where you could feel the frame flex. Steel has made a bit of a comeback with some of the 29ers like the Gary Fisher and some riders have opted for steel frames with rigid carbon forks. You would have to go with an expensive titanium frame to get the same strenght and ride quality of the Dragon. A lot of dirt jump bikes and BMX bikes are steel for reasons of strength.

    The Dragon has a long history as a race bike and by itself has a "bling" factor going for it similar to the Specialized Stumpjumper. I always like factoring in some "bling" to a bike purchase like a Fox or Reba Fork , Xt Crankset, race wheels etc. With the Dragon the frame is the bling. The Dakota is lighter which I think is still the advantage over steel and some will opt for a lighter frame.

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    7
    borregokid, you've given me a lot to think about.

    Ideally, I would love to be able to have both bikes side by side and test ride them, but I don't think that will be possible. Where I live, it seems stores only carry basic Rockhoppers, Giant Rincon's, etc... Can't find any store that carries the higher-end hard tails from any manufacturer. I understand steel usually gives a more comfortable ride compared to aluminum, but according to the review of the Dakota Comp, the cf monostays increased the smoothness of the ride almost as much as a dualie, so I guess I have to consider them equally "comfortable" without being able to compare them directly.

    Taking a closer look at the components on each bike, I see a few more differences. I'm not an expert on all those components so I wonder why each bike has different components yet the same MSRP?

    Dragon Comp Specs
    Dakota Comp Specs

    For example, the fork, headset, wheels, tires, front derailleur and BB set are different on each bike. Why is that? For the same price, which has the better components?

    Also, why would the steel bike keep more of its resale value than the aluminum? I kind of understand about a particularly nice component (like some really high-end fork) on a bike being the "bling" factor but I guess I don't understand how in the Dragon's case that would be the frame since its just steel. Titanium or carbon fiber I could understand, but why would a steel frame be bling-y???

    Sorry for all the questions. I'm very new but very willing to investigate and learn.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •