Nickel vs Horsethief

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  • 01-02-2013
    skopiec
    Nickel vs Horsethief
    Getting back into riding after a few years off. Looking to replace my 05ish Specialized Enduro, amd hoping to stay under 2.5K or so.

    Since 26ers appear to be an endangered species, I was focusing on trail oriented FS 29ers. Was almost ready to pull the pin on one of the good Salsa Horsethief deals, but stopped when I found some equally good deals on Santa Cruz Nickels.

    Being a 40yo recreational rider (southern AZ) that rides a little bit of everything, is there a clear favorite between the HT and the Nickel? I really haven't spent much time with a 29er off road...am I being short sighted even considering a 26er? Part of me feels that both are probably so much better than my current ride, that I'd be happy with either.
  • 01-02-2013
    JDM
    I think you can run 650b wheels on the nickel.

    I have a cannondale rush with 650b wheels and a Rip9. They are both fun bikes.
  • 01-03-2013
    ncfisherman
    Same old advice...but, you really need to test ride some 29ers(and even 650b, if you have the option).

    I think you would be selling yourself short, if you didn't consider 26" bikes. Especially given the type of bikes that you're looking at. After owning a few FS29er's(including one Salsa), I'm back on a Pivot Mach5 and happy to be on it. Really happy with my 29er HT though.
  • 01-03-2013
    skopiec
    Unfortunately I don't have many opportunities to demo, outside of lame trips around shop parking lots. The 29ers that I have ridden definitely feel foreign, hence my hesitancy to jump right in.

    The other part of me doesn't want to sink a lot of $$$$ into something that's becoming obsolete... At least from a marketing and resale standpoint.

    I just need to go ride...
  • 01-03-2013
    Hoban
    I for one won't likely ever get a 29er, they just don't feel right to me. I doubt the 26s are going anywhere. The people who like the 29er mostly seems like XC riders, and that's not my riding style.

    You need to pick the bike that feels good to you however.

    I have a Fuel EX7 but building a Nickel frame as we speak.
  • 01-03-2013
    progfan1
    I've had my Horsethief for a little over a month and am loving it. The confidence it inspires is amazing. I take technical sections at a speed I never would have tried on my old rig. The stability enables me to bomb downhill faster than I ever have before. There are chain stay fetishists that say the 'Thief's are too long, but I and my friends who have tried it (more advanced riders than I) have had zero problems with cornering. Very high "fun factor", and, as you said in your initial post, the closeout deal on the 2012 was hard to resist.
  • 01-03-2013
    skopiec
    Appreciate the post. I think I'm starting to lean towards the Salsa, if for no other reason, it's "more" different that what I already have. From all accounts it seems like a great all-rounder.

    Out of curiosity, how tall are you and what size do you ride? Unfortunately there isn't one local that I can size up on.

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by progfan1 View Post
    I've had my Horsethief for a little over a month and am loving it. The confidence it inspires is amazing. I take technical sections at a speed I never would have tried on my old rig. The stability enables me to bomb downhill faster than I ever have before. There are chain stay fetishists that say the 'Thief's are too long, but I and my friends who have tried it (more advanced riders than I) have had zero problems with cornering. Very high "fun factor", and, as you said in your initial post, the closeout deal on the 2012 was hard to resist.

  • 01-03-2013
    progfan1
    I'm 5'7" and ride a small. The cockpit on a medium feels ok for me, but I opted for the small because of standover and maneuverability since this bike has a fairly long wheelbase. The sizing guide on Salsa's website is fairly reliable. Also, there is a very detailed fit calculator at competitivecyclist.com that you could use and compare to the frame sizing charts on the Salsa site. I used this to help confirm my decision to buy a small, as there weren't any to demo in my area.
  • 01-15-2013
    skopiec
    Took the plunge and purchased a Medium Horsethief..

    Hats off to Universal Cycles. Bike was well packed and arrived in great shape. Less assembly was needed that I expected, I was riding around with 30 mins.

    Only had 1 ride so far, but I'm very happy with my purchase. Size is spot on (Im 5'10).

    Thanks for the comments
  • 01-16-2013
    mikeyonthemadone
    I have been testing my new Horsethief in the Phoenix area. What a machine. The only real downside is really tight switchbacks, you notice the wheelbase length then.

    Mikey
  • 01-16-2013
    YakimaDeathYaks
    Go with the horsethief, its a Salsa can't go wrong even though there not made in the USA nor is Santa Cruz, also you'll get alot more compliments on a Salsa...Santa Cruz is a dime a dozen out on the trails.