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Thread: Giant VT-2

  1. #1
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    Giant VT-2

    G'day..

    Anyone heard any bad things about the 2004 Giant VT-2's that i should know about before buying one?


    R.

  2. #2
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    I'm actually looking at the 04, (much better then 03), a Specialized Enduro, and Gary Fisher Cake II DLX. The VT seems to be speced much better and everyone I've talked with loves them, but no Giant dealers around here have one to test ride.

    Good luck and I'm interested to hear what others have to say.

  3. #3
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    To my understanding the frame is the same but I can be wrong. Giant shaved some weight by putting better and lighter components and replaced the Swinger 4-way with a 3-way in order to solve the seatpost lenght issue that the '03 had.

    I ride a '03 VT2 and love it.

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    Good job! Really nice everyday trail bike

    I've had my 04 VT-2 for about 6 months now. From what the Giant rep tells me, the VT frames were changed a lot for 04, seat angle is not as relaxed and the rear linkage has been strengthened (although you're still not going to mistake it for a quad bearing Ventana X-5!). The suspension works well, handling is great, bike pedals great and the bike climbs much better than a bike that weighs almost 30 pounds should. There's almost nothing on the bike that NEEDS upgrading, although I'm now using Crossmax XL's. I just got back from Sea Otter where I demo'd a bunch of different bikes (Yeti 575, Tomac ELI, Ventana El Salty and X5). All great bikes (especially the X5), but considering most of them were about double the cost of my VT I was pretty happy with the choice of my Giant. One other thing, Giant really stands behind their products and if you do have any problems with it they will do whatever it takes to make you happy. For the type of bike it is (5-6" trail bike) and for the price (~$1800) it's very hard to top.

  5. #5
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    Great Value

    The Giant VT`s are IMHO one of the best value for money trail bikes available at the moment.
    Like I`ve said in posts before, the only "weakness" (minor as it is) in my opinion is the seat post shim, and this is easily overcome by fitting a Thomson post.

    Cheers

  6. #6
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    i agree, the giant vt is a very good value bike, its a great bike for just having fun in pretty much any conditions or you can lighten the bike a bit or just leave it stock and still do a little racing with it too!

  7. #7
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    Thanks for the info..

    I'm pretty sure that the '04 VT-2 is very good value for the money, and apart from the seat post shim and the tires, both of which i plan to have changed in the shop before taking the bike, it should be just what I need for the local tracks I ride on.

    I am also very tempted to get the VT-1, but as I don't plan to race, I think it's a waste of money for me even though I am stoked in those wheels on the VT-1.

    I guess it would make a good upgrade path for the #2 model sometime in the future..

    I've read just about everything I can find on both models, and it seems that everyone likes them, so I think iI will go ahead and get one next week.

    R.

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    Good job!

    Rainman, Four quick things.
    1) I believe that Giant uses the shim on the VT to strengthen the seat tube area. A 30.8 will fit, but it might jeopardize your warranty. You should ask your dealer before you swap it out. The shim really isn't that big of a hassle.
    2) A lot of people complain about the tires, but actually I kind of liked them. I live in SoCal and they actually work pretty well out here. I'm also about 215-220, and I use around 46 lbs. of air and never had a pinch flat in almost 6 months.
    3) The VT-1 is very sweet, but I doubt you will notice THAT much difference. I upgraded to Crossmax XL's and I like them, but it's not like I'm climbing twice as fast. The UST will give you additional traction on loose climbs.
    4) See what kind of expertise your LBS has with Hayes disks. I like Hayes, but IMO they can be a bit temperamental.
    Best of luck with the new bike!

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    Re: VT Frame change for 04

    I am not sure where the frame change in geometry comes from that was addressed earlier in this thread. I looked at the 04 specs and they are the exact same as the 03. Can somebody tell me if I missed something here?

  10. #10
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    Thanks CraterMaker..

    On the MTB Product reports under 2004 Full Suspension bikes I read that the tires and seatpost / shim setup sux, that is why I was gonna swap them over to decent parts.

    Here in Oz where I ride it is mostly tight technical singletrack and fireroads stuff, usually dry dusty conditions, so I was concerned about the tires ability to hang on.

    Even though I like the VTS-1, I will go for the 2 model because I can't really justify the extra cash and I don't plan to race, just recreational riding, mostly.

    Appreciate your additional input, thanks mate.



    R.

  11. #11
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    New question here. I too am trying to decide between the VT2 and VT1

    Rainman, Please let us know how you like it once you buy it. Any VT1 riders out there with some thoughts on how they like their VT1's? Thanks

  12. #12
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    Jeff, I test rode both VT's and really liked the 'feel' of them, although that was only on footpath/road/steps, etc.. and not in the rough.

    I noticed that they both bobbed quite badly in out-of-the-saddle steep uphill sprints, but I put that down to a lack of shock-tuning by the LBS before I test-rode them.

    [ I hope that the VT doesn't pogo that badly after it is tuned in properly.]

    Actual shock action both up and down stairs/steps seemed good, quite smooth, and normal on-the-seat pedalling was really nice.

    I tried both the small and medium frame sizes... very little standover difference but quite a bit of cockpit room between the two, and the medium size frame felt 'softer' to ride somehow, probably because of the slightly increased wheelbase and top-tube length.

    The 'feel' between the VT-1 and the VT-2 wasn't that noticeable overall to me, but the #1 did feel a bit more 'the bizness'. If I was a racer, I would definitely go for the VT-1.

    Here in Oz, the price difference is about $1300 between the #1 and the #2.

    I'm still not 100% decided between the frame sizes and models, but i'm leaning towards the small frame in a VT-2 model right now.

    I'll definitely let you all know what I decide and how it goes after I get one next week.


    R.
    Last edited by Rainman; 04-25-2004 at 04:16 AM.

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    VT Geometry and 'Bob'

    Giant hasn't changed their website to indicate the geometry changes, but if you give them a call they will fill you in. I don't remember the exact change in the ST angle, but I think they said it went from around 72 to 73.5.
    Any shock, even the SPV on the VT, can be overwhelmed by out of the saddle aggressive pedaling. You can control this by how aggressive you pedal and by how much air you put in the SPV chamber. The higher the pressure the stiffer and more resistant to 'Bob' it will be, but you will lose small bump compliance. You should be able to reach a happy medium with trial and error!

  14. #14
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    SPV Pressure

    Quote Originally Posted by CraterMaker
    Giant hasn't changed their website to indicate the geometry changes, but if you give them a call they will fill you in. I don't remember the exact change in the ST angle, but I think they said it went from around 72 to 73.5.
    Any shock, even the SPV on the VT, can be overwhelmed by out of the saddle aggressive pedaling. You can control this by how aggressive you pedal and by how much air you put in the SPV chamber. The higher the pressure the stiffer and more resistant to 'Bob' it will be, but you will lose small bump compliance. You should be able to reach a happy medium with trial and error!
    I agree wholeheartedly with Craterman, if you get out of the saddle and mash the pedals you`ll certainly overwhelm the SPV and begin to bob, stay seated and its very hard to get any bob happening at all.
    It really becomes a case of setting up the SPV to find a setting that suits you, I`ve found changes as small as 10psi can be felt in the ride.
    Cheers

  15. #15
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    VT`s in Oz

    Quote Originally Posted by Rainman
    Jeff, I test rode both VT's and really liked the 'feel' of them, although that was only on footpath/road/steps, etc.. and not in the rough.


    [ I hope that the VT doesn't pogo that badly after it is tuned in properly.]

    Here in Oz, the price difference is about $1300 between the #1 and the #2.

    I'm still not 100% decided between the frame sizes and models, but i'm leaning towards the small frame in a VT-2 model right now.




    R.
    I certainly noticed a big difference in cockpit when i tried both the medium and large frames....i felt very cramped in the medium, but the large is perfect.
    Once you setup the shock to your desired riding style, you`ll find bob is minimal although not totally eradicated if you stand up and mash.
    Apparently VT availability is becoming a real issue here in Australia....my LBS had to bring a VT1 in from Perth to meet an order.

  16. #16
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    I understand about 'mashing the pedals', as i come from a hardtail background.. where pushing aggressively and standing doesn't have the same penalties as a softail.

    However, I must admit I was testing for pogo, and gave it heaps of 'mash' to feel what the worst-case scenario would be like...and truthfully, it wasn't as bad as I thought it would be... i've felt worse..

    I could live with it if I had to, but as its possible to tune most of it out with the bike setup and less aggressive spinning, I reckon I will be ok. I normally have my butt planted on the seat most of the time anyway.

    One point tho.. I read about the problems that have occured with the wheels on the VT-1... the SL's...with spokes tearing out and breaking...etc.

    It sorta put me off a bit..as I was considering the VT-1 pretty seriously for a while as I like those wheels that come as standard equipment on it..

    I am aware of the growing shortage of the VT's in Oz, as I had problems arranging the test rides...the Giant VT's are apparently very popular this year here. For this reason I was in a bit of a hurry to get one before they all go.

    I guess that I had better be ready and waiting at the door of the LBS with my money next week, so I don't miss out.



    R.

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    Bob and the Crossmax SL wheels

    Rainman,
    If you are going to be doing most of your riding sitting I doubt you would notice any 'bob' on the VT. I'm around 220 and I don't notice, or see it, and the bike climbs great. After having the bike for 6 months now when I get out of the saddle I find that moving less with my upper body seems to help limit the 'bob' from the fork. Even with a more aggressive form you will get more "bob' from the fork than the rear shock. I didn't think that the SPV fork was doing that much until I rode several bikes with a FOX Talas fork on them.
    I find it funny with the Crossmax's. There are several people that respond negatively immediately whenever someone asks a question about them. Their reasoning seems to be that ANY handbuilt wheel will be WAY better and easier to fix than the Crossmax's. Well, that's assuming that the handbuilt wheel is going to be built by a top notch craftsman and not some kid at a bikeshop that just got hired 30 minutes before doing your wheels. The spokes are more expensive, but MOST shops here in SoCal carry them and can repair them quite easily. Ask your shop about them and if something happens what will they do to repair them. Also, ask them what their experience has been. For what it's worth, the ONLY wheels that I have had so many problems with that I had to send back were a pair of road wheels I bought from Dave Thomas at Speeddream wheels. Great guy who I'm sure most of his wheels work out nicely, but it didn't for me.

  18. #18
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    So Cratermaker, you find the Minute 1 SPV is actually more efficient then the Talas? What about ride characteristics, which do you like better for all around fork?

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    Minute vs. Talas

    Quote Originally Posted by Toup7
    So Cratermaker, you find the Minute 1 SPV is actually more efficient then the Talas? What about ride characteristics, which do you like better for all around fork?
    Actually I was just referring to the anti-bob characteristics of the Minute vs. the Talas. I think the Talas is smoother than the Minute and has better small bump compliance. I like that the Minute doesn't take as long to change travel, bobs less and might be a tad stiffer on big hits. I think they're both great forks.

  20. #20
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    Good job! Sharing Great Information Re:VT1 and VT2

    R and others....Thanks for continuing to share your experiences with the VT1 and VT2. This thread is heating up. My guess there are many out there considering the VT's this spring. Still have not seen one out on the trail here in Eastern Pennsylvania. Went to Blue Marsh Creek today and saw plenty of NRS's and BLUR's but no VT's. I rode a friends 1998 Cannondale Super Raven 1000, really liked it.......old design I guess but still works very well.

  21. #21
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    Here in Oz, the fork on the VT-1 is a Psylo and the VT-2 is the Minute.

    Dunno whether it is the same there in USA..


    R.

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    How much do you weigh?

    Quote Originally Posted by Rainman
    Here in Oz, the fork on the VT-1 is a Psylo and the VT-2 is the Minute.

    Dunno whether it is the same there in USA..


    R.
    Rainman, The VT1 and VT2 in the states come with the Minute 1. Sounds like your version of the VT1 is a bit more XC. I never thought the Psylo was a good fork for a heavier rider and I don't think that it has SPV so the Minute might be a better match for the rear end. Sounds like the VT2 might be the way to go!

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rainman
    Here in Oz, the fork on the VT-1 is a Psylo and the VT-2 is the Minute.

    Dunno whether it is the same there in USA..


    R.
    thats wierd, i think the minute is a much better fork, but then again, i guess it depends on what type of riding your more oriented towards but for the VT, i think the minute is a perfect fork in terms of adjustability and spv among other things. I would have gotten a VT2 for sure if i lived in oz.

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    i am considering the VT3...

    any feedback?

    my budget is already stretched with this one.... but what do i lose out on compared to the 2?

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by wotzapollohimalaya
    i am considering the VT3...

    any feedback?

    my budget is already stretched with this one.... but what do i lose out on compared to the 2?
    Depending if your store has a VT3 in stock already in your size then I doubt you will be able to get one for a while
    It is certainly a great bike, and very very very good value.
    Basicly you get a bit lower on everthing besides, the handlebars, stem, seatpost, saddle, frame, rear shock, BB, Headset, grips, think thats bout it
    My dad actually wants one but he might have ot wait till september ofr the first shipment of the 2005's! I'm gonna be really pissed off with Giant Australia if they don't meet the demands again, it seems like ALL the giant bikes are sold out! Well not all, but alot of them, the whole VT range, the yukon, just to name a few.
    I doubt you will find a better value bike in the price range.
    BTW you can find a cheap price for the VT3 here....
    www.phantomcycles.com.au
    and here...
    www.freedommachine.com.au
    Soooo let your LBS know about the price and they should match it

  26. #26
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    2003 Vt-1

    Quote Originally Posted by Rainman
    G'day..

    Anyone heard any bad things about the 2004 Giant VT-2's that i should know about before buying one?


    R.
    I bought a 2003 VT-1 a couple months ago. I was looking at the VT-2s, but the LBS only had medium size frames in stock and I needed a small. The owner said that he could get me a 2004 VT-2 and offered me a killer deal on it, but then said that he could get me a 2003 VT-1 for only $70 more. We looked through a Giant flyer and compared the spec's between the two bikes. The 2004 VT-2s are impressively spec'ed, much better than the 2003 VT-2s. I love my VT and haven't got much more to say, that hasn't already been put out.
    The SPV rear shock really works. Again, read everything you can about this shock. The Manitou website has some information and scour the "shock" section of mtbr. This shock is very sensitive to small changes, so use other's settings as just a reference. Reading other's posts, I have found that there is no exact setting. It seems the perfect setting is like opinions, everyone has their own. Personally I like this, it allows me to look for my sweet spot. Keep this in mind when dealing with the LBS. SPV is still a fairly new concept on MTBs and that young kid at the LBS, regardless of what he thinks, might not know all that much about how they are supposed to be set up. Like someone else pointed out, 10lbs of air can make a noticable differerence in how the bike feels. When I picked up my bike, I was told the bike was ready to go for my body weight. When I got home, I found no air in the SPV chamber.
    As far as that seatpost shim, the LBS actually had a 2003 VT-2 frame that they built up and used a seatpost without a shim. However before I would replace it, I would check with Giant on the issue of voiding the warranty. I have had no problems with mine, but I did find one thing that was importantant to keeping mine from creaking. Make sure the slot in the shim is 90 degrees out from the length of the bike. In otherwards, the slot faces straight to the left or right when you are sitting on the bike. When going over my bike after I got home and fine tuning the post height, I pulled everything to add a little grease. The first ride out and the post creaked like hell. I found that I could even get it to creak occasionally, when just pushing and pulling on the saddle at home. It did not creak like that at the LBS, when I first rode the bike around the shop a few times. While playing around, I found by turning the shim at a different angle I could get the noise to go away. I haven't had a problem since.

    Brian

  27. #27
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    how's the VT on XC trails?

    I'm looking at a VT1 '03 for my next frame. My 18.5 NRS is too small and I'm looking for something a bit more plush. I ride alot of long, hilly, singletrack traisl (fireroads, double track, XC) Do you guys think the VT is a good bet for that kind of riding? I heard it's kinda heavy but I'm not a weight weenie at all. What do you guys ride?

  28. #28
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    It's sure is a great bike for XC, it's plush, sensitive to small bumps and no bob is felt during on the saddle climbs. I use mine mostly for xc trails and talk about personal experience.

    Discussing about the forks, I built my VT2 with a Psylo (already had it) and recently considered a Minute 1 but ended up with a Black Super. The Black is similar to the Minute on everything but the SPV. I understand that the OEM Minute is different than the aftermarket Minute in terms of travel, the OEM is 90-120mm and the aftermarket is 100-130mm if not mistaken.

    I can honestly say that 130mm in the front makes the bike nervous and tends to lift during climbs.

  29. #29
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    I have a 2003 VT that I built from a frameset and it works great as a XC bike. I built it as a do all trail bike and don't really care about weight. If you are coming from a fairly light XC bike then the heavier weight will be noticed. I have not had any problems climbing because of the weight and I have climbed up some serious steep grades (20% +) - I think the weight actually helps climbing because the weight is down low and helps keep the rear tire hooked up. Also all is forgotten when the trail turns downward :-)

    One note on suspension travel- set the rear at the 5.75". Have tried both the 5" and 5.75" and found that the bike handles much better at 5.75". I run the front at about 105mm (Pyslo SL- have never thought the fork too softly sprung- but then I have the aftermarket version and not an OEM verison) for a nice balanced feeling with the rear.

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    Re: VT 1,2 or 3

    I ride a VT1 03. I love it. I am a bigger dude at 205 and feel the suspension works great. Although, the spv rear is not a "one setting " fits all shock.

    I also ride a 02 Yeti Arc at 22.5 lbs and do not shy away from climbs. One of the most noted things on the VT1 is how well it climbs compared to my ARC. I feel like I would rather climb hills on the VT1 now.

    Geometry wise I would have to agree that the weight being centered low on the bike probably helps its climbing ability.

    Frame size wise...I had to go with a 22.5" frame. I am 6'2" with a 36" inseem and the 20.5 just left me feeling cramped. I think a 21.5 would have been the answer but this isn't an option.

    I personally don't care for the minute 1 shock. I have seen the inside of these shocks and don't care for all the plastic. Also, I think the rebound adjustment needs a major redesign. With the proper riding technique, front bob out of the saddle can be greatly reduced.

    Which brings me to my next point. Why are so many people against the RS psylo race? I agree that the OEM coil is too soft but after an upgrade I am very pleased with the personality of the shock now. I suspect that weighing 205 I would eventually see this flexing that riders speak of on DH stuff but I haven't. Nor have I ever bottomed the shock out. And the lock out kicks butt!

    I come from the boutique side of things when it comes to frames. If it isn't hand built I don't want it. Giant changed that! The welds are impressive, the finish is top notch, the warranty , if you need it, can't be touched by any other manufacturer out there. Hands down, Giant makes a great bike and weather you go with an 03/04...VT1,2,3 you can rest assured...you are getting a great bike!

  31. #31
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    I'm fairly lightweight compared to you blokes..at 165 Lbs..and probably won't work the suspension as hard as a heavyweight would...

    This whole thread has been very helpful to me in focussing my mind on the right bike to buy.

    Reading all the threads on MTB on the parts that go to make up these Giants, I have concluded that I can't take the chance on the wheelset on the VT-1, as there seems to have been numerous reports of ripped spokes and cracked rims with the Crossmax.

    So that sorta rules out the VT1 for me...as I want to ride the bike, and not have it in the shop getting fixed..

    It looks like the VT-2 for me then..



    R.

  32. #32
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    Don't believe that all XMax's are weak. I'm 200lbs and run the older version of them (flat spokes) and haven't had any issues with spokes or rims, just the annual freewhell swap.

    On the contrary know people that broke XMax XL's in no time and switched to SL's. After the switch the ripped spokes issue went away. Seems that the material that Mavic uses for the XL spokes is weaker and the SL's use a similar spoke to the previous version.

    For my money the VT2 has the more bang for the buck.

  33. #33
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    Good job! Giant VT3 Wins 2nd Place in Mt Bike Action Shootout

    Quote Originally Posted by wotzapollohimalaya
    i am considering the VT3...

    any feedback?

    my budget is already stretched with this one.... but what do i lose out on compared to the 2?
    The VT3 won 2nd place in the Mountain Bike Action TRailbike Shootout in the June edition. MBA only had good things to say. Here is the skinny: "This trailbike is the real deal. It can be abused on fast fire road descents or on technical chutes with a few hidden swithchbacks thrown in to make sure you're paying attention. Next, you can ride with confidence and ease into root-infested, slimy forest singletracks. While not the most agile climber, it gives trail riders the payoff they are looking for . This is a fun bike to ride that is tough enough to ride for hours on end."

  34. #34
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    Nervous at 130mm..

    Quote Originally Posted by DiRt DeViL
    .

    I can honestly say that 130mm in the front makes the bike nervous and tends to lift during climbs.
    Yes, I`ve also found the bike to start getting quite nervous at 130mm on steepish cilmbs. I race with the fork set at 90mm, this keeps the steering accurate for those sharp technical climbs, and also allows the bike to handle tight switchbacks extremely well.
    Cheers

  35. #35
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    Parts availability...

    Quote Originally Posted by Rainman
    Reading all the threads on MTB on the parts that go to make up these Giants, I have concluded that I can't take the chance on the wheelset on the VT-1, as there seems to have been numerous reports of ripped spokes and cracked rims with the Crossmax.





    R.
    That would be one of my concerns here in Oz. The blade spokes on the Crossmax look great and no doubt its a great wheelset. Unfortunately though, some of these high-end parts just arent stocked in the majority of LBS here. I`d reckon it`d be extremely hard to find replacement blade spokes here in Oz without the LBS having to search and order them in....i wouldnt be surprised if this could take days.....or weeks
    Cheers

  36. #36
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    Done It !!!

    Well mates, I went and done it today..

    I am now the proud owner of one [1] Giant VT-2 2004 model and so far i'm very happy with it.

    I will let you all know how it goes in the next few days, but this bike feels sooooo good already in the couple of short runs I did this afternoon on it.

    I hope to get it out tomorrow and give it a decent thrashing through the singletracks near where I live.

    I have already changed the stock tyres to something more 'grabby', changed the standard Easton stem to something shorter with more rise, and tuned the front and rear shocks a little to suit my weight.

    Everything 'feels' good now, so.. we shall see what happens on the dirt next.



    R.

  37. #37
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    Well Done Rainman

    Congratulations, the VT2 is a great bike and I`m sure you`ll have an awesome time riding it.
    Wise move to swap out the stock tyres.
    Chhers

  38. #38
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    Congrats, hope the VT serves you well. Just remember that tunning the suspension takes some trial and error until you find your sweet spot, you'll know when it's there.

  39. #39
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    Congratulations Rainman

    Happy riding. Will stay tuned to see what you think of the new VT2 out on the trail. Particularly interested to hear what you think of climbing and how the overall weight if the VT2 feels on the trail. Thanks!

  40. #40
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    congrats rainman! i know you'll really like your vt, the 2004 vt2's are definitely the best out of all the 2004 vt's i think in terms of price, value, and ridability.

    Happy riding!

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    Thanks mates..

    For all the advice and help..

    ...And now for the 'dirty bits'..

    Road: Smooth, easy to pedal, irons out the bumps easily, rides over gutters, steps stairs and potholes no problem, very comfortable.

    Dirt: Fantastic in the dirty stuff. Rode it on two of my favourite trails yesterday and cleared two difficult sections that I never make on my hardtail. Bike felt light and responsive through the tight bits, climbed very well, and went downhill like a damn rocket, eating up every bump, rock and root without a single problem, and at a much faster speed than the hardtail ever did. Super comfortable on the trail, suspension soaks up everything and lets me concentrate on the trail ahead.

    Only one problem...well....two problems actually.

    1: Because I changed the front stem to a shorter and higher rise one, I was getting front end 'float' up some steep climbs when seated. A couple of times the front wheel was 4-6 inches off the ground during the climb, giving me a lack of steering, and the feeling I was gonna lose it. Apart from the light front end, it climbs remarkably well. I also tried climbing when standing a few times, and met 'Bob' when I mashed, but the pogo was minimal and she climbed everything i threw her at.

    2: The damn standard Easton seatpost was creaking and so I swapped it out for a Thompson which acheived two things at once...it stopped the creaks and also gave me about an inch further forward in seating position, which now helps to keep that front end down a bit better..

    Summary: Although I have only been riding this bike for a couple of days, I feel comfortable and happy with it already. It's like I have been riding it for years. It just 'fits' me. I will be submitting a full report under '2004 full suspension' bikes, as soon as I can get more dirty miles on it..

    Recommendation: If you havn't ridden the 2004 Giant yet, you owe it to yourself to try one out. They are bloody marvellous..

    Oh yeah...one last thing...all i want to do is ride it..so my work is suffering, and my missus is complaining that i'm paying too much attention to the bike and not to her...lol...



    R.

  42. #42
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    Good to hear

  43. #43
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    hey thats good to hear, pretty much the same thing as what most people say about the vt, except for the front end lifting up part haha, maybe you could try lowering the amount of front travel so you can put more of you weight forward? or just get a logner stem haha

  44. #44
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    Good to hear that you like the VT, welcome aboard!

    If you can, replace the stem with one with less rise or depending on your fork lower the travel a bit. The VT's with long travel forks get nervous when climbing. In my case I use a 120mm 5deg rise Thomson stem and have my Manitou Black Super at maximum travel (120mm) with no problems.

  45. #45
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    Vt

    Quote Originally Posted by Rainman
    Dirt: Fantastic in the dirty stuff. Rode it on two of my favourite trails yesterday and cleared two difficult sections that I never make on my hardtail. Bike felt light and responsive through the tight bits, climbed very well, and went downhill like a damn rocket, eating up every bump, rock and root without a single problem, and at a much faster speed than the hardtail ever did. Super comfortable on the trail, suspension soaks up everything and lets me concentrate on the trail ahead.

    Only one problem...well....two problems actually.

    1: Because I changed the front stem to a shorter and higher rise one, I was getting front end 'float' up some steep climbs when seated. A couple of times the front wheel was 4-6 inches off the ground during the climb, giving me a lack of steering, and the feeling I was gonna lose it. Apart from the light front end, it climbs remarkably well. I also tried climbing when standing a few times, and met 'Bob' when I mashed, but the pogo was minimal and she climbed everything i threw her at.

    2: The damn standard Easton seatpost was creaking and so I swapped it out for a Thompson which acheived two things at once...it stopped the creaks and also gave me about an inch further forward in seating position, which now helps to keep that front end down a bit better..




    R.
    Good to hear youre enjoying riding your VT Rainman.
    At fairly long fork travel settings I`ve found really getting your weight forward (basically so your chin is only a couple of inches off the bar) helps get a bit more weight onto the front wheel and keeps it hooked up a bit better.
    Do try experimenting a bit with SPV settings, you`ll find that bob can really be cut to minimum.
    And hey....dont forget to post some pics in here when you get some
    Cheers

  46. #46
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    Smile I did it too today! New VT 2

    I bought a new 2004 VT 2 today also. Had to have it ordered and built though...needed the large frame(i am 6'1", 34 inseam, 190 lbs). Swapping the pedals for ....well haven't decided yet but most likely either Shimano SPD's or Candys. Should have bike next Friday. Thanks again for the information.

  47. #47
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    Congrats Jeff

    Quote Originally Posted by JeffSkisMontana
    I bought a new 2004 VT 2 today also. Had to have it ordered and built though...needed the large frame(i am 6'1", 34 inseam, 190 lbs). Swapping the pedals for ....well haven't decided yet but most likely either Shimano SPD's or Candys. Should have bike next Friday. Thanks again for the information.
    Congrats Jeff.....dont forget to post some pics
    If youre going for Shimano SPD`s, have a look at the 540`s, theyre clones of the much more expensive SPD959`s, they dont have the retention screw hassle of the 959`s, only weigh 4g more, and are half the price of the 959`s.
    Cheers

  48. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by JeffSkisMontana
    I bought a new 2004 VT 2 today also. Had to have it ordered and built though...needed the large frame(i am 6'1", 34 inseam, 190 lbs). Swapping the pedals for ....well haven't decided yet but most likely either Shimano SPD's or Candys. Should have bike next Friday. Thanks again for the information.
    congrats man! know you'll love it!

  49. #49
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    Hey!!!

    Well done Jeff...

    You are gonna love it, mate...I spun about 20 k's onto mine today, and it never missed a beat...


    R.

  50. #50
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    Congrats Jeff, take good care of her, she'll do the same for you.

  51. #51
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    ... and if we just ... Thanks all! Can't wait to next week to get....

    my new VT 2! I rode today on my daughters '98 Cannondale F2000 medium frame. Ouch, way to small for me. I also went over the handlebars and landed on my feet while going down a steep section of single track . I've gone over the bars.. oh I guess 7 or 8 times in my mountain biking history.... but never landed standing up!
    Some more updates on the VT 2.......It will be either the Shimano 540 pedals or the Candy SL's. Also have decided to upgrade the shifters to XT and the front derraileur to XT. Jeff

  52. #52
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    Smile Picked up My VT 2 this past Friday!

    I picked up my new VT 2 Friday! I ended up with a 20.5" frame (large), changed the rear der.. to a XTR and shifters to XT, added superlight Maxxis tubes. Took the pedal credit and put on my older Shimano SPD/Platform combo's on to get used to new bike. Still considering the Crank SL Candys or Shimano 540s, will decide once I get used to the VT first! Mothers day visit was scheduled so off to New England, no riding Friday or Saturday. Sunday.....my wife and daughter wanted to do a run where we stashed one vehicle 15 miles from the house. Had a great ride. The VT 2 performed as expected. The bike weighs just a tad over 29 lbs. Did not notice additional weight at all versus my 1998 Cannondale F1000 hardtail(26 lbs). Disc brakes are just getting broken in(scored) but liked the feel. The rapid rise XTR der....was super. Overall very happy with the purchase. Can't wait to ride this thursday night! Thanks all for sharing information on the VT's. Will post more impressions of the VT in the future.

  53. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by JeffSkisMontana
    I picked up my new VT 2 Friday! I ended up with a 20.5" frame (large), changed the rear der.. to a XTR and shifters to XT, added superlight Maxxis tubes. Took the pedal credit and put on my older Shimano SPD/Platform combo's on to get used to new bike. Still considering the Crank SL Candys or Shimano 540s, will decide once I get used to the VT first! Mothers day visit was scheduled so off to New England, no riding Friday or Saturday. Sunday.....my wife and daughter wanted to do a run where we stashed one vehicle 15 miles from the house. Had a great ride. The VT 2 performed as expected. The bike weighs just a tad over 29 lbs. Did not notice additional weight at all versus my 1998 Cannondale F1000 hardtail(26 lbs). Disc brakes are just getting broken in(scored) but liked the feel. The rapid rise XTR der....was super. Overall very happy with the purchase. Can't wait to ride this thursday night! Thanks all for sharing information on the VT's. Will post more impressions of the VT in the future.

    hey congrats man! thats some sweet upgrades you made to the deraillers/shifters too! have fun!

  54. #54
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    Sounds like you are having as much fun on your VT-2 as I am on mine, Jeff...

    Just a couple of things i've noticed since spinning a few more miles onto my girl though...

    The front fork travel..i'm only getting about half to 2/3rd's of the available travel on the fork legs, according to the marks left on the legs after a ride. I have the pressure set at 50psi and have tried 30 psi, but it feels the same to me...and I still don't get the full travel. I have the red nut on top of the RH side leg wound all the way out, and 3 clicks on the blue rebound damper.

    I think that Answer have placed a too strong spring in my forks for my weight..[165/170 lbs] but I havn't pulled the forks down and checked what spring is in there yet.

    The other thing is the rear Minute SPV 3 way shock. I have tried running 150 psi in the main, and 100/120 psi in the SPV with 3 clicks on the blue rebound damper...and after every ride, even on pavement and over gutters and steps, i'm seeing the rubber O ring at the bottom of the slider, which means that i'm using the full travel. I can't feel it bottom out, but to my mind it's still waaaay too soft for what i'm riding on.

    If I take it on the trails and singletracks, I use the whole travel on every decent hit. This is worrying me because I feel that I shouldn't be using this much travel so easily, even when running more air pressure than is recommended for a bloke my weight.

    I have never once felt it hit bottom, but it still worries me that I will damage it if I keep on with it like it is right now. My LBS said that it is pretty normal to get the full travel on the rear shock at least a couple of times over a 2 hour ride in the rough stuff, but i'm getting full travel even on the flat stuff off gutters...it's very plush, but still...i'm a bit concerned.

    Not sure what to do except take it back and get the pro's at the shop to check it out. I have even been thinking of upgrading the rear shock to the 4 way, just to get a more linear performance with less chance of running out of travel.

    Have you noticed anything like this on your new one yet????



    R.

  55. #55
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    I have a 4-way on my VT2 and have noticed the opposite, I can never get full travel or seems like that. The O-ring is over 3/4 of the travel at the end of each ride and have never felt bottoming out.

    I read somewhere that SPV shocks never provide full stroke but the travel will be there. It's like a cushion on the desing to prevent blowouts, don't quote me on that.

  56. #56
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    Finally...

    I have it sorted out... yay!!

    It seems that I have been running the wrong pressures altogether in my Swinger 3 but today I finally got it sorted out, thanks to some help from another Manitoo owner.

    Now, I'm running 200 psi in the main and 90 psi in the SPV.. and it's lovely ...

    All I have to do now is to sort out the front fork travel, and bob's yer uncle...

    I think that my front Minute forks have a too strong spring in them, but i'll have to pull the spring out to check it.




    R.

  57. #57
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    Am I the “other Manitou owner”? I hope so. Glad you got it sorted out on the shock, but now for the front fork.

    I have the Minute One on my bike too so maybe my experience will be of use as well.

    I weigh 270lbs and I can say that I could have lived with the stock spring (green in my case) if I had to. It was OK if I turned the volume adjuster (red knob) in about four turns. But it was harsh in the mid-sized hits, especially in a situation like a rock garden. I decided to get the firm ride spring and back the volume adjuster out and all is pretty good now.

    So, for all you guys that are well under 200lbs and have the stock spring, I could honestly imagine you going to a softer spring.

    If I turn the volume adjuster in with the firm spring, I can only get four inches of travel out of it. With the stock spring, if I turned the volume adjuster in four turns (with the SPV at 90 to 100psi), I could not bottom out the fork. I can only imagine what you lightweights () are going through with the supposedly medium spring. I would consider going to the softer spring. It’s only $19 and not too hard to change.

    I think the fork rides best with the volume adjuster backed all the way out so the spring is most linear. I keep the SPV near max to keep it from moving while I spin the pedals. Standing and hammering is not something I do a lot of, so I don’t worry about it much.

  58. #58
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    G'day Jeff, glad you could drop in...

    Thanks for the tip on the rear shock, I saw your post yesterday.

    As far as the front forks go, I have been following the Dr Dizzle posts about the springs, and came to the conclusion that my spring is too heavy for my weight.

    I have to get my LBS to get a lighter one in for me. This weekend I will pull the forks apart to see whats in there, but i'm pretty sure that I will have to replace it.

    I'm not using any of the adjustments on my forks, as the too-strong spring is just over-riding any need to do that right now. I was using a bit of rebound damping at first, but backed that right off as well as the red volume adjuster nut up top in order to get more response from the forks, but no luck, i'm afraid.

    I can hit just about anything I like and still only get 1/2 to 3/4 travel on the sliders when set to 120 on the top selector.

    The forks 'feel' stiff to me, they work very well, but just not plush enough.

    Anyways, i'll have a look inside in a day or so and see what Manitoo have put in there...



    R.

  59. #59
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    Swinger Travel/Minute Feel

    All, I had not noticed how far the rear shock was compressing, so after reading your note I took a look at the O ring. It was approx 1/2 inch from the bottom. I have been bombing the hills since I picked up the VT...my guess is there have been some huge hits that caused the deep compression. Will watch more carefully now to see for sure. As far as the Minute being stiff/not plush....I weigh in at 190 lbs, add clothes, shoes, and gear(camelbak, tools, pump, spare tube)....tipping the scales at approx. 200 lbs. It has just felt "new" to me. Really enjoying the VT...should have bought a long time ago....can't believe I rode a hardtail all these years! Take care, Jeff

  60. #60
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    ...hehhehheh... thats what I thought too when I had ridden mine on my favourite tracks.."omg, how long has this been going on", and "I should have been on one of these months ago!!"


    Great bikes...love mine.


    R.

  61. #61
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    Amazing..

    Took the VT-2 out today with the 'new' settings on the back Swinger shock which i set up thanks to advice from a couple of forum posters.

    Because I now have the correct settings on the rear shock, it seems to have also affected the way the front forks react to bumps on the trail.

    Whereas before I was only getting half travel on the front shocks, i'm getting almost full travel now.

    It seems that the firmer settings on the rear shock are making the front more responsive to bump input.

    So everything is now working much better with a more balanced feel at both ends.

    I thought that this bike was good before...but now...



    R.

  62. #62
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    Just took my new VT on my first trail ride today. It felt pretty nice. I let some pressure out of the main chamber 'cause it felt too stiff. I let too much out sso the rear felt a bit too soft and sloppy while riding. You guys weren't joking when you said it takes some fine tuning. Overall, it rode pretty well. I could definatly feel a the extra weight (compared to my NRS) and this trail I usually blow through was a bit more work this time, but the bike handled it great and I could feel how the bike just floated over the hrash spots. Some of the log hops I used to cringe about while riding them with my NRS were like butter with the VT. Being about 200lbs (loaded and riding) the VT puts my mind at ease when hittin' nasty stuff! Farewell to the NRS (Which I loved btw) and it's thin frame...hello to this monster! Just got back, already want to go again!

  63. #63
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    i got my VT3 from phantom cycles 2 weeks ago and loving it.... i just wanna get home and ride it eveyday

    i paid A$2250, so i am absolutely stoked with the price

    well, i have never ridden such a plush bike with so little bob

    compared to my old hardtail, obviously no comparison, but i am having some probs with steep climbs.... i will take the advice here and wind the front down a bit.... it runs a manitou black fork....

    i am also blown away at how light it is compared to my $1000 hardtail... dunno what the weight weenies are complaining about

    i'm just loving hopping on my bike and crusin' and single tracking around.... some epic rides coming up too.... doing manly dam ride next saturday and then great north rd in june

    i'll do a proper review after 3 months

  64. #64
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    Nice to hear you got one..they are good value, aren't they...

    Since I finally got mine dialed in, i'm loving it.


    R.

  65. #65
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    Downhills

    Quote Originally Posted by Rainman
    ...hehhehheh... thats what I thought too when I had ridden mine on my favourite tracks.."omg, how long has this been going on", and "I should have been on one of these months ago!!"


    Great bikes...love mine.


    R.
    I dont know if youre in NSW or not, but if you get the chance, take the VT along the Oakes trail....it absolutely carves up the downhill sections that really trouble a lot of other bikes, doing this trail on a VT is awesome
    Cheers

  66. #66
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    yeah, i am looking forward to it!!! so itchin' for a big ride but soooo busy at work!!!

    anyway, i am off to manly dam this saturday

    then on june 12th i am planning to do the great north road with bike north crew

    oakes sometime after that

    i am doing a commute on wednesday.... so interested to see how good the SPV is

  67. #67
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    ChChChCh Changes!!!!

    Just ordered a set of Maxxis Minotour 1.9's from Price Point. Will run them in the mud....the Hutchinson Scorpion Airlights are a bit too wide and floaty right now around here. We have had plenty of rain. Late June or July will switch back to the Scorpions. Really enjoying the VT.

  68. #68
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    Hey all, just both my 1st FS cycle Giant VT2 2004 $2700AUS. Had 3 HT in my life time, my previous bike was GT Avalanche 0.0 2003 HT XC.

    Been researching for months on FS (Jamis Dakar XLT 2/Expert, Specialised Enduro/Stumpjumper, GT I-drive 0.1, etc...), had to look into the riders feedback & not the parts or names & rumourse etc..
    It is a hard decisions to make on buying an FS cycle, co's there's far to many cycles out there to choose from? Some are expensive for there quality and ride and some as less expensive with good design and ride which make some of us cyclers more confused...lol

    Had the VT2 for 2 weeks now and I can say this bike is awesome so far. I 1st rode it in the rain and muddy conditions and it went very well. The FS felt a little funny at the start but in the end I was very happy back at the car park. The 2nd time was on the semi dry to dry conditions and it felt even better on jumps and logs. I hated jumps before and since the VT2 came along I'm comfortable on jumps and DH runs. And Yes, it climbs well like my XC HT with suspension adjustments.

    The tyres I change to Tioga Factory XC 1.95 F/R and to makesure to tighten the seat post clamp to super tight and line line up the shims with frame the channel.

    I find this bike can do XC, FR & DH with supension adjustments with no problems. Now I know why Giant call it the all rounder/terrane bicycle and it make since

    Another Happy Giant VT2 rider
    cheers
    P.S. will post some pics later on

  69. #69
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    Hey all, just both my 1st FS cycle Giant VT2 2004 $2700AUS. Had 3 HT in my life time, my previous bike was GT Avalanche 0.0 2003 HT XC.

    Been researching for months on FS (Jamis Dakar XLT 2/Expert, Specialised Enduro/Stumpjumper, GT I-drive 0.1, etc...), had to look into the riders feedback & not the parts or names & rumourse etc..
    It is a hard decisions to make on buying an FS cycle, co's there's far to many cycles out there to choose from? Some are expensive for there quality and ride and some as less expensive with good design and ride which make some of us cyclers more confused...lol

    Had the VT2 for 2 weeks now and I can say this bike is awesome so far. I 1st rode it in the rain and muddy conditions and it went very well. The FS felt a little funny at the start but in the end I was very happy back at the car park. The 2nd time was on the semi dry to dry conditions and it felt even better on jumps and logs. I hated jumps before and since the VT2 came along I'm comfortable on jumps and DH runs. And Yes, it climbs well like my XC HT with suspension adjustments.

    The tyres I change to Tioga Factory XC 1.95 F/R and to makesure to tighten the seat post clamp to super tight and line line up the shims with frame the channel.

    I find this bike can do XC, FR & DH with supension adjustments with no problems. Now I know why Giant call it the all rounder/terrane bicycle and it make since

    Another Happy Giant VT2 rider
    cheers
    P.S. will post some pics later on

  70. #70
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    Seems that the VT is the hot bike down under, here I'm the only one with one and the local Giant dealer has never seen one.

    Glad that you guys are enjoying your bikes, I'm certainly enjoying mine.

  71. #71
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    Quote Originally Posted by wannabeRacer
    Hey all, just both my 1st FS cycle Giant VT2 2004 $2700AUS. Had 3 HT in my life time, my previous bike was GT Avalanche 0.0 2003 HT XC.

    Been researching for months on FS (Jamis Dakar XLT 2/Expert, Specialised Enduro/Stumpjumper, GT I-drive 0.1, etc...), had to look into the riders feedback & not the parts or names & rumourse etc..
    It is a hard decisions to make on buying an FS cycle, co's there's far to many cycles out there to choose from? Some are expensive for there quality and ride and some as less expensive with good design and ride which make some of us cyclers more confused...lol

    Had the VT2 for 2 weeks now and I can say this bike is awesome so far. I 1st rode it in the rain and muddy conditions and it went very well. The FS felt a little funny at the start but in the end I was very happy back at the car park. The 2nd time was on the semi dry to dry conditions and it felt even better on jumps and logs. I hated jumps before and since the VT2 came along I'm comfortable on jumps and DH runs. And Yes, it climbs well like my XC HT with suspension adjustments.

    The tyres I change to Tioga Factory XC 1.95 F/R and to makesure to tighten the seat post clamp to super tight and line line up the shims with frame the channel.

    I find this bike can do XC, FR & DH with supension adjustments with no problems. Now I know why Giant call it the all rounder/terrane bicycle and it make since

    Another Happy Giant VT2 rider
    cheers
    P.S. will post some pics later on
    another happy customer!!!

    that is a good price!

    i got my VT3 for $2250 with speedo

    only prob is a bit of chain suck and losing air gradually in the rear shock, but i was told this is normal

  72. #72
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    I posted a review of the 04 back some months ago. I stand by everything I wrote. It's one hell of a bike. I did find that running the fork @ 115mm works best for my terrain. Buy it and love it.

    dave

  73. #73
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    My girl just keeps on getting better with mileage...

    I can't say enough good things about this VT-2, it is an incredible machine.



    R.

  74. #74
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    Do yourself a great favor: buy a Stan's No Tubes conversion and ride happy & tubeless, with lower rotating mass & lower air pressure. IMHO the 2 is equal in performance to the higher priced 1.

    Good riding,

    dave
    Last edited by sanford; 06-08-2004 at 08:27 PM.

  75. #75
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    Re: UST

    Quote Originally Posted by sanford
    Do yourself a great favor: buy a Stan's No Tubes conversion and ride happy & tubeless, with lower rotating mass & lower air pressure. IMHO the 2 is equal in performance to the higher priced 1.

    Good riding,

    dave
    Dave, I agree with most of everything you stated about UST's and Stan's. I use both. But I beg to differ on rotational weight reduction. Have you looked at the weights associated with most UST's? They are anything but light in most cases. Now I know that Hutchinson has the new python lights but the average person wouldn't want to spend that kind of money for something with such a short riding life.

    However, I have made use of Non-UST tires on my Crossmax XL's with great success. I am using a performance brand tera-trac wire bead with stans. I shaved almost 1 lb of the bike and have much better tread for my riding conditions.

  76. #76
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    Same Here in Northeastern PA

    Quote Originally Posted by DiRt DeViL
    Seems that the VT is the hot bike down under, here I'm the only one with one and the local Giant dealer has never seen one.

    Glad that you guys are enjoying your bikes, I'm certainly enjoying mine.
    I have not yet seen another VT out on the trail in my area...quite a few NRS's in the area though. GT VT sounds like a popular set up down under. Still really enjoying mine, heading to Virginia to ride the Shendoah Mountains tomorrow!

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