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  1. #1
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    New question here. Looking to build a FS bike - need opinion on 2 frames

    Hi guys,

    I'm currently riding a 2003 Kona Caldera which has been upgraded over the years to pretty much everything XT. It has Avid discs, Marzocchi MX Comp ETA 5" fork, Sun Single Track rims...

    The bike rides really well, I really love it despite the frame age, but I feel I'm at a point where I'd like to build myself a FS bike. I'm doing mostly all mountain/trail rides and don't need anything spectacular.
    I'd like to keep the total weight at 30lbs or less as much as possible (current weight of my Kona).

    I really enjoyed working on my bike all those years. I did pretty much every upgrades myself which is why I'm looking at building a new ride instead of buying a complete bike.

    My plan would be to start acquiring parts, starting with a frame/shock and add to it during the fall/winter seasons in order to have a new ride ready for Spring 2014.

    I'm a newbie when it comes to FS frames/bikes and budget is limited... which brings me to my posts subjects, I'd like to have some feedback/opinions on the following 2 frames, which do fit my budget and seem to fit my needs as well:

    First one is a GHOST ASX PLUS (top tier german brand):
    ASX Plus 5700 | Ghost Bikes (frame only, no shock)

    It's a 2011. I looked at the specs and geometry and it looks pretty good. Since it comes without the rear shock, I was looking at adding a 140mm (5.5") FOX Float Rp23 on it (frame is designed for a 5.5 shock). The frame alone is mine for $390. Adding the FOX shock brings the total cost to approx. $630+tax - shipped.
    Someone reported this frame weight around 6lbs with an air rear shoc and BB installed....

    I might visit my local MEC store since they sell the Ghost brand and have a closer look, they won't have 2011 ASX Plus frame, but it looks pretty similar to their AMR series.



    The second one is another EU brand - Vitus Gravir:
    Gravir Frame

    Geometry:
    Gravir Frame

    This one is a 2013 and do come with a Rock Shox Monarch R3 rear shock. It has 100mm (4") travel (rear). I have read a little here on MTBR about the RS Monarch R3 and it got pretty good reviews but I'm a bit concerned about the 100m travel, wondering if this is enough...
    This one I can get for $765+tx shipped.
    I couldn't find weight data for this frame, although it's marketed as a "lightweight frame".

    To be honest, I'm really tempted by the Ghost. Price is not bad, it has 5.5" rear travel as well... but the Vitus looks really nice too...

    I would be able to swap a few parts from my old Kona on the new frame as well (i.e. shifters, derailer, maybe the fork)...

    So, any knowledgable members care to comment on those frames, share opinions?

    Thanks so much for helping guys!

    Cheers!

    Fred
    Last edited by RicThot; 07-16-2013 at 10:00 AM.

  2. #2
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    Well, I went ahead and ordered the Ghost frame. $389 shipped - wow!

    I wasn't sure at all about the Monarch shock on the Vitus, read lots of mixed reviews, too many of which stated it leaks air and bottom too easily...

    Cheers!

  3. #3
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    I've been a fan of Ghost frames for awhile. Thats a great price.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shakester View Post
    I've been a fan of Ghost frames for awhile. Thats a great price.
    Pretty impressive deal yeah - shopping for the rear shock now. I keep reading good things about the Manitou Radium Expert and is dirt cheap at CRC... or a RP23 but it's almost 100$ more...

    In any case, I'll end up with an awesome frame+shock for less than $700...

    Any thoughts

  5. #5
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    Should also check out the X Fusion O2 RCX. I currently ride a Fox RP23 with a Float 150 RLC but will be swapping them out with an O2 RCX and a Velvet. I just love what those guys at X Fusion are doing.

  6. #6
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    Yeah the XFusion is what comes stock on the Ghost ASX Plus 5700 (same frame I bought) and is apparently a really good shock.... but I can't find a 190/50 (7.5/2") anywhere!!

  7. #7
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    Any thoughts about what? The frame purchase or the rear shock?

    If its not too late, I'd visit On One website and look at their Titus frames. The FTM comes to mind. It'll be a few hundred more that the Ghost but not by much. Another thought, what about stripping your current ride and building it up this season. You could then slowly swap new parts over as you get it dialed in and figure what you want or need.

    Either way, congrats on the upgrade.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by mnigro View Post
    Any thoughts about what? The frame purchase or the rear shock?

    If its not too late, I'd visit On One website and look at their Titus frames. The FTM comes to mind. It'll be a few hundred more that the Ghost but not by much. Another thought, what about stripping your current ride and building it up this season. You could then slowly swap new parts over as you get it dialed in and figure what you want or need.

    Either way, congrats on the upgrade.
    Since "Any thoughts?" was in the OP, I meant regarding the 2 frames

    Well yeah, it is too late since I ordered the Ghost frame 3 days ago and it already cleared the UK customs and is on route to Canada.

    I'm no expert, but I think its an awesome deal - $390 shipped. I'm planning on putting a Manitou Radium 140mm on it, which gives me a pretty good frameset for under $600.

    Should be perfect for my type of riding.

    As far as swapping components from my old bike, I though about it but there are quite a few key things that don't fit on it - beside, I LOVE my old upgraded Kona and will keep it as my backup bike for sure.

    Cheers all!

  9. #9
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    It's an excellent deal man! You'll have a big travel bike built the way you like. As long as you liked the geo numbers...you're good to go. I was looking at this frame and was tempted, as I want to switch the frame on my XC 26er, but I'm just finishing up my Rockstar and held myself back, as I would have go with bigger front/rear suspension for full benefit. Don't want to keep spending $$ on the bikes right now. Enjoy and give us some pics.

  10. #10
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    Well I received the frame on Wednesday - it is gorgeous, really!

    But unfortunately, it's back to UK for a warranty exchange

    The top of the head tube had a flat spot. Despite my misfortune, I must say I'm really impressed with CRC... The frame was shipped to my doorstep in 7 days.
    As for the warranty exchange, I was worried, especially since I'm in Canada, but they really made the whole thing super smooth.
    They arranged a courrier pickup at my place for the damaged frame, at no charge - and shipped a new frame as soon as I provided them the courrier reference number.

    More to come once I get a good frame

  11. #11
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    I would measure the shock mounting points I had to fit 25 top and 23 bottom not the 24.2 and 22.2 that are advertised. I've got a push tuned fox van RC on mine also considered the monach RC3 plus too but went for the plusness of coil and I'm not disappointed.




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