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  1. #1
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    New rider looking to buy mountain bike. Need help!

    Hope everyone is doing well! I am new rider and have never owned a mountain bike. I am looking to purchase a mountain bike and have been to a few bike shops and have done a good amount of research but I know a lot of the guys on this forum are experts since everyone has been riding for a very long time. I am hoping I can get some insight on your thoughts. Any help would be greatly appreciated! Here is my problem, I have 6 feet 6 inches tall and I weight about 250-260lbs. I wanted to know if a full suspension bike or a hard tail might be better fit for me? I noticed that after sitting on a full suspension bike that I was more comfortable than on a hard tail. I am looking to street ride and hopefully get into single trail rides once I get in better bike shape. I live in California and have heard it is better to have a full suspension bike. This was suggested to me by a BMC rep and he stated if I lived in Texas then a hard tail bike would be the way to go. The other problem I have is that most shops do not carry XL and XXL bikes in stock which makes it tough for me to pick the bike I want because I can test ride them. In addition, since I am a bigger guy and can apply more force to the bike I am hearing I should buy a bike with better components. I am looking to spend anywhere from $1600-2600. I have test rode the Santa Cruz Highball only. I really like the Stump Jumper 29er Comp which I can get for $2600.00 but have never tested. Is it better to spend the money on better components? Would I be fine going with the Rockhopper or Santra Cruz Highball?

  2. #2
    Beer Please!
    Reputation: Klurejr's Avatar
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    These two forums would help you the most. Where you have posted is a region specific forum.

    Clydesdales/Tall Riders

    Beginner's Corner

    All the Best!
    telling me to stay out of a former bombing range next to a dump while you build huge houses next to it? Screw you.-sandmangts

  3. #3
    Master of the Face Plant
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    Why buy a new bike? Save a ton of cash and get something used. Some of these may be big enough for you. Also be sure to go to North of the Border. They have a few demo bikes big enough for you and the owner is your height so he may be able to help if you are set on buying new. I personally like to let someone else eat all that depreciation.
    2012 GIANT YUKON FX full suspension mountain bike
    Kona Kikapu Mountain Bike 03
    XL Specialized Stumpjumper FSR Expert
    2005 Specialized Stumpjumper 120 Pro XL
    2013 cannondale flash 29er!
    CANNONDALE PROPHET 1000 MOUNTAIN BIKE
    2012 Santa Cruz SuperLight 29er XL
    http://www.nbbikes.com/
    ^^^Best Bike Shop of MTBR 2008^^^

  4. #4
    Master of the Face Plant
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    Forgot to mention, since you are a big boy the components that will be of most importance will be the saddle, chain, seatpost, and wheelset. Since you are just starting out chances are you will not be doing any big jumps or drops but that may change. The good thing is as your skill progress chances are your weight will drop but you are still going to be a big guy. I used to be heavier and I broke alot of seatpost bolts. I use a Thomson post on all my bikes and never break them now. I also like WTB pure v or laser v saddles. They are a little wider than most and they have strong rails. An XT or LX chain or comparable Sram chain should be fine for you along with xt level cassette. I have bent rings on XTR cassettes just from standing and pedaling hard.
    http://www.nbbikes.com/
    ^^^Best Bike Shop of MTBR 2008^^^

  5. #5
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    If you can find one, I'd start with a used hard tail. I'm 6'5" and 230, so I know it's difficult to find a used bike in the XL and XXL size on craigslist. They do show up though. Also call around to the bike shops to see what they have instock in XL and XXL sizes. Bikes in those sizes are only desirable to those who need them, so once they're on the showroom floor, they may sit there for a while. A store might give you a better discount just to get it out of there vs. ordering a new one.

    My best recommendation is to make sure the fork is an air-cartridge and hydraulically dampened, and the wheelset is decent quality (32 spoke and doublewall at a minimum). Most of the drivetrain parts can be replaced relatively cheap if you wear them out abnormally fast, but a fork, frame, and wheelset are a major components and shouldn't be skimped on. The fork should have 32mm stanchions. I'd recommend the rockshox recon silver or suntour raidon for starters. The recon gold and epicon are great/light forks, but they're light. At 230 lbs, I'd rather have a stronger fork than have it 1-2 pounds lighter. Same for the wheels, get a strong set.

  6. #6
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    New rider looking to buy mountain bike. Need help!

    I would advise buying used, for sure. It's not very likely that any bike you buy right now, new or used, will be the bike you want 2 years from now.
    '14 Lenz Lunchbox
    '08 Gary Fisher Ferrous 29

  7. #7
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    Thank you guys! This information helps me out a lot!

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