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  1. #1
    Pedal! Gasp for Air...
    Reputation: lencho's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    19

    Another request for bike purchase recommendations

    Plan to get a full suspension 29er and would like to keep the budget as close to $2500 as possible, which limits me some component wise, but there does seem to be some good choices offered. I’m 6’2” and a girly 283. I’m working to get in the 230-250 range by the end of summer. I have been riding MTB’s 2 seasons, but I’m still short of having the lungs and legs to beat the trails entirely (bad knees too). Improving with each ride, but lots of room to grow as a MTB’er. I used to race moto-cross in my youth (thus the bad knees) and love the down hills, but the up hills are still a serious challenge at times since I am now over 50 and fat. The local trails are in the 8-12 miles range and offer hilly single track with a mixture of easy/moderate/high technical stuff. Currently ride a 2005 Rocky Mountain Element 30 that is a just bit small in size for me (23” top tube). I like the bike, but feel going to a 29er that fits is in my best interest for enjoying and growing as a rider.
    Bikes, in random order, and approximate costs that I am considering:

    •Trek HiFi Plus - $2,199.99
    •Trek Rumblefish - $2,309.99
    •Giant Anthem X 29er 3 - $2,350.00
    •Specialized Stumpjumper FSR Comp - $2,600
    •Rocky Mountain Altitude 29er - $2,499
    •Kona Hei-Hei 2-9 SE - $2,599
    •Salsa Spearfish $2,250
    •Voodoo Canzo 29er -$2348 (via Adrenaline Bikes; Reba RL & SLX components)

    Of course Trek, Giant and Specialized are all well represented with LBS support. Others would probably have to be purchased via internet, or special ordered.

    Any others I should consider? Your opinions on the best choice will be appreciated. I have not had the chance to ride any of these, yet.

    Wish Santa Cruz had something more affordable to offer in 29er’s. I love the Tall Boy, but not the entry fee.

    Sorry for the long winded post, wanted to give some background to make everyone’s opinions more valid.

  2. #2
    Former Bike Wrench
    Reputation: mtnbiker72's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    15,985
    I'm quite happy with my Specialized FSR Comp 29, I got it for $2100 and sprang for an upgrade in the wheelset (stock wheels are good but I wanted a higher engagement rear hub) and some new pedals and still came in right around $2500

    I also test rode the Rumblefish and Anthem...The Rumblefish would have been my second choice. The Anthem felt a lot more XC and a lot less Trail to me and came with totally worthless tires for my riding environment (the Fisher's weren't great either). I also found the SRAM shifters to be much more to my liking than the Shimano shifters on the Giant.

  3. #3
    Underskilled
    Reputation: CaveGiant's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
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    4,111
    You have a good budget, but are springing for a niche catagory, won't make things easy.

    The key things are your weight and the fact you like motocross.

    I have not met a single motorbiker who did not get in to the high adrenaline riding style.

    You are going to want a tough bike.
    The weigh of the bike, compared to you is negligible.
    So concentrate on strength.

    The strongest bike in the list, and the only one worth looking at is the Spesh.

    However if I were you I would see if I could budget for the likes of a Niner WFO.

    Don't think of the WFO as a big hit AM bike, think of it as a stiffer stronger do everything bike.

    I ride my WFO on everything from road rides to DH (and I only weigh 220lb now).

    The spesh will be fun, the WFO would be better.

    Just get the bike strong.
    Why would I care about 150g of bike weight, I just ate 400g of cookies while reading this?

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation: paul29er's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    99
    my own feeling having bought a FS 29 and a hard tail. I recommend going with the hard tail. Im 6'2" 235lbs and with the large volume tires (Schwalbe 2.4 RR) the hard tail is more than adequate. A beefy shock absorbing seatpost makes all well.
    stl 29 htail: Tru 3.3 stylo 180mm. WB 135/20mm, sram X-9. Schw RR. Hayes Trail 203mm, hbars spank777

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