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  1. #1
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    Which bike for a $300 budget?

    I'm trying to get serious about biking, but I need a bike that can handle 90% paved/10% packed dirt/gravel and that can handle me (5'5" 200+ lbs (please don't make me say how much "+" )). I was riding a no-name brand hunk of steel, so I don't have any comparisons. My budget is $300 at the most. My choices so far:

    A couple Gary Fishers, no shipping, local pickup:

    http://mikesbikes.com/itemdetails.cf...ogId=39&id=855
    http://mikesbikes.com/itemdetails.cf...ogId=39&id=853

    GT Avalanche 2.0

    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...MEWA%3AIT&rd=1

    Schwinn Mesa GS

    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...EWA%3APIC&rd=1

    And, last, an Ibex, that is slightly out of my price range once shipping is included.

    http://www.ibexbikes.com/Bikes/ALP-350-Details.html

    Any thoughts/feedback? TIA!!

  2. #2
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    The GT doesn't look too bad. I have an Avalanche 1.0. I'm 6'0", 220lbs... I had the Judy TT fork.. worked ok...

    Quote Originally Posted by JenNewbie
    I'm trying to get serious about biking, but I need a bike that can handle 90% paved/10% packed dirt/gravel and that can handle me (5'5" 200+ lbs (please don't make me say how much "+" )). I was riding a no-name brand hunk of steel, so I don't have any comparisons. My budget is $300 at the most. My choices so far:

    A couple Gary Fishers, no shipping, local pickup:

    http://mikesbikes.com/itemdetails.cf...ogId=39&id=855
    http://mikesbikes.com/itemdetails.cf...ogId=39&id=853

    GT Avalanche 2.0

    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...MEWA%3AIT&rd=1

    Schwinn Mesa GS

    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...EWA%3APIC&rd=1

    And, last, an Ibex, that is slightly out of my price range once shipping is included.

    http://www.ibexbikes.com/Bikes/ALP-350-Details.html

    Any thoughts/feedback? TIA!!

  3. #3
    Your bike is incorrigible
    Reputation: Guyechka's Avatar
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    I'll second the GT, but I want to add yet another option if I may: Specialized Hardrock. The forks are not so great, but the frame will last forever--or at least until you have some more money to spend on a new bike.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Guyechka
    I'll second the GT, but I want to add yet another option if I may: Specialized Hardrock.
    I'll second the Hardrock. The 2006 base model lists for $360, but I bet there are 2005 models left over that can be found for well under $300. You may even be able to get a 15-20% discount on the '06 and that gets you down into your price range.

    Another suggestion I have is the Kona Smoke. Given the riding that you've described (no true off-roading), a bike designed for comfortable street riding may be your best bet. These bikes can probably be found discounted at or around $300.

    Yet another option may be something like the Giant Sedona "comfort" MTBs. The less expensive models would probably be just fine for the riding you decribe.

    The other bikes you posted, the GF'ers, the GT, etc., will probably be just fine also. If you do get into more serious trail riding with obstacles, rough, technical terrain or do any kind of jumping or dropping I would say most of my suggestion would be inadequate.

    I would try to ride a few and see which ones fit the best. Good luck.

    Patrick
    Last edited by PCinSC; 06-18-2006 at 12:59 PM.

  5. #5
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    This is the bike I'm really drooling over

    Iron Horse Pro w/ disk brakes

    http://www.performancebike.com/shop/...tegory_ID=3050

    Convince me it's worth the shipping cost + paying a bike shop to assemble it...

    (Plus there's 10% off before 6/25!)

  6. #6
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    I was in the same situation as you a few weeks back. I ended up buying a Raleigh Mojave 4.0.

    http://www.raleighusa.com/items.asp?...=11&itemid=285

    I like it but my frame of reference is a 10+ year old Trek that I bought new 10+ years ago

  7. #7
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    Decent buy

    Iron Horse makes sturdy frames. The fork is not ideal clydes for off road use, but if you say that most of what you'll be doing is paved path and hard pack you should be fine. I don't know that you'll find a better deal if you can get it for $269.00. Any idea what shipping will cost?
    'If Wal-Mart sold parachutes, who would jump?' Frank Havnoonian (quoting his father) Drexel Hill Cyclery

  8. #8
    Fat, but working on it...
    Reputation: IAmCosmo's Avatar
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    If it were me I'd ask around at the local bike shops and see if they have anything used for sale. You can get a lot more bike for your money buying used. I just got a $1800 bike for about a third of that used but still in great shape...

  9. #9
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    just picked up a diamond back sorrento for 270 at sports authority in san diego. it was on sale from 320ish...seems like my old D.B

    very sturdy, bit heavy, but very smooth. spinner fork is adjustable, and seems to do fine for my 260lb frame

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by kodiak1232003
    just picked up a diamond back sorrento for 270 at sports authority in san diego. it was on sale from 320ish...seems like my old D.B

    very sturdy, bit heavy, but very smooth. spinner fork is adjustable, and seems to do fine for my 260lb frame
    A buddy of mine got the same bike, $260 i belive at *****. He's 5'11 300+, seems to be holding up for him with no issues.

  11. #11
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    The retailer matches the online prices, so there would be no shipping costs. They have the model in stock and a couple assembled in the right size. I think I have my new bike!

    I will definitely check other models to see if they have any 2004 or 2005 closeouts, used bikes, etc. Now I just have to have patience to wait until the weekend!

  12. #12
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    Have you thought about checking your local Craigslist?

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by IAmCosmo
    If it were me I'd ask around at the local bike shops and see if they have anything used for sale. You can get a lot more bike for your money buying used. I just got a $1800 bike for about a third of that used but still in great shape...
    I completely agree! So many bikes depreciate so quickly you can get a good deal.

    Just make sure you check it out in person with someone who knows about the bike and checks it for damage.

    I've seen too many bikes come into shops where people were totally screwed by an Ebay seller.
    MTB4Her.com: mountain bike site for women, by women

  14. #14
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    My wife got a Trek 3700 for $250. With a helmet, kickstand, and a couple water bottles we came in under $300.

  15. #15
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    Bought my wife a Giant Sedona DX a couple years ago and she really likes it. It is a good choice for the riding you have described.

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