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  1. #1
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    Need some help from Talon Owners or Giant experts

    I am about 85% sold on the Talon 29er. I started wanting the Spec'd Hardrock 29er, but was a bit disappointed with Specialized cheaper offering and I feel I need to go up to a Rockhopper to be comparable to the Talon frame. Not to say it isn't a great bike, but the Talon just felt better even with the cheaper Talon 2 offering.

    To the help I need, Please:

    The 2011 Talon 29er 2 had the same rims as the 2011 Talon 29er 1, but the 2012 has a different name now. Are they not they not the same or are they just rebadged? I know for 2012 the Talon 2 got watered down a bit, but is priced lower as such. Not a lot of information on the new Giant in house rims. I read a few threads about the higher end ones, but nothing on the Talon 2 rims.

    Those that have used the Talon 29er how are the Giant components holding up and those with Talon 29er 2s how are all the components holding up for you, under what riding and what weight/size are you? I am 6'1" 190lbs.

    I like the brake upgrade on the Talon 1, but that is the big thing drawing me to the 1 over the 2. I will be happy with getting the Talon 2 and replacing as I need and as I go. I am trying to get my wife to enjoy riding with me so the trails we ride will be slower at first anyways. I don't like either of the bikes forks per reviews, they felt fine on my pavement rides for now.

    Finally, if Talon owners can provide some details over the ownership of the bike, how it has been/performed, how it is holding up, and any regrets?

    Thanks for the time gents, I been away for about 3 -4 years and I am getting caught up. This is my first hardtail in a long time.

  2. #2
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    I have a 2011 Talon 1, and have been riding it hard for the past 7-8 months. The thing is a tank and holding up VERY well. Probably riding about 30 miles a week on it, in the Arizona rocky desert trails. Only upgrades I have made are got some good flat pedals (Diety Decoy) and 5.10 shoes. Also converted it to 2x9 by taking off the big chain ring (which was only being used to bash on rocks) and replaced it with a real bash guard from BBG. Love this bike.

  3. #3
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    mtbdennis, thanks for the feedback. That is good to know.

  4. #4
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    At 220lbs my Talon is holding up excellent with no wear and tear on components. The bike is awesome and I love it each and every time I go for a ride I did replace the pedals with SPD's and the riser bar with a Easton EA50. Bike is set up perfect for me now


  5. #5
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    The remaining OEM parts on my Talon 1 are still going strong with little show of wear, the frame can take a beating.

    Keep in mind that Giant went with lesser components in all their bikes.

  6. #6
    29er and 26er
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    I've only had mine for ~ 1 month. Seems to be a tank. No problems so far with ~ 150 miles of riding/commuting to work.

  7. #7
    29er and 26er
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    You may want to look here: Giant Talon 29er 1 29er Hardtail Reviews

  8. #8
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    Thanks gents. I have read all the post and reviews. Seems like a great buy. Still no word on the new talon 2 rims and how watered down they are. They look the exact same as the talon 1 and for the matter the xtc's but with out the logos.

  9. #9
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    Anyone know when Giant generally releases the new models?

    Edit: Giant wont tell me the 2013 release, they say it hasnt been established. The dealer says in the fall should be new releases.

    Giant did tell me that all the US Talon 29er including the 2012 talon 2 have the same S-XC 29 rims and same hubs. They are produced together and the ones that go on the 2 just do t get the "Race inspired" S-XC logo. So that makes me feel better.

    Well my dealer (only Giant dealer on Oahu) sold the large and I am placing the order this week for it. I was really looking hard at the Talon 1 but it isnt a model they carry and they can special order it, however they won't discount any off MSRP $860 and I am getting the Talon 2 for 20% off. $350 difference for me makes it easier to go with the 2.

    I will do a right up when I get it.
    Last edited by Ranger Mac; 04-11-2012 at 10:40 AM.

  10. #10
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    i just picked up a talon 2 about 3 weeks ago. i take it out almost every day.

    this is my first "real" bike and im pretty new at riding trails and whatnot. but some things i notice.

    the front fork is not very good. i never had a front shock but its not very impressive, kinda loud and clunky going down paths with roots or rocks, it makes me a bit nervous.

    and also i want to upgrade the brakes. i notice the brakes fade when going down a somewhat steep hill.

    it could also be that im 5'11" 220lb.

    i also notice the tires lose traction going uphill with a low gear.


    if anyone could recommend upgrades that wont break the bank and are improvements that would be great.

    still new and not sure what to look for or what fits ect.

    but definitely new fork and hydraulic disk, 180-203 front

  11. #11
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    Rick, put a 170mm rotor with adapter up front and you'll see a great improvement.

    Had that setup on mine but since my son took it away from me it went back to 160mm f/r and for him there's enough stopping power.

  12. #12
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    I'll have to keep that in mind.

    Just got back from a 20 mile ride, now my shocks are squeaking.

    During the rocky path I actually had to pull over because I thought something was loose. But everything was tight, my stock fork was just having a heart attack!

    Any recommendation of a better fork? Sub $300, 25% on road 75% off road.
    Mostly single track, rocks roots, no jumps really, yet.

  13. #13
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    On the cheap look for a Marz 44 TST2.

  14. #14
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    i will have to keep an eye out for one. thanks!

    a few more questions. browsing some used forks on ebay, some had a taper steerer, 1 1/2' on bottom to 1 1/8 at the top. some were just 1 1/8, some were cut to a length of 7" some were longer, some had a star nut or something like that installed.

    what do I need for my talon? what does all that stuff mean?

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by rick1987 View Post
    i will have to keep an eye out for one. thanks!

    a few more questions. browsing some used forks on ebay, some had a taper steerer, 1 1/2' on bottom to 1 1/8 at the top. some were just 1 1/8, some were cut to a length of 7" some were longer, some had a star nut or something like that installed.

    what do I need for my talon? what does all that stuff mean?

    The Talon does not have a tapered head tube. A tapered head tube is bigger at the bottom than at the top. You will know it if you have one (pretty obvious). So you really want a 1 1/8 fork, not a tapered one. I have heard that Cane Creek makes an adapter headset that will let you run a tapered fork on a non tapered head tube, but I have no experience with that.

    Since all head tubes are different heights (for different size bikes and different brands) forks come with a long steerer tube that needs to be cut to size for the bike it is being installed on. You need to know how long yours is. You can measure it with your fork still installed. Measure from the bottom of the headset to the topcap on your stem (this will give you an idea of how long you need the steerer to be on your new fork. Ideally you should remove your fork and measure to get the exact length. If the length of the fork you are looking at is smaller than yours, then it will not work for you. If it is longer, you can cut it to size

    The star nut goes inside the steerer tube (it is what that bolt on top of your stem screws into. It is REQUIRED to install your fork as it holds everything together while you tighten your stem to the steerer tube. If the fork does not have one, then you will need to have it installed (or do it yourself) AFTER the steerer tube is cut to the proper length. If the steerer tube is too long and already has the star nut, you will need to remove the star nut, cut steerer tube to length and then re install the star nut.

    Good luck. BTW, I am in the same boat as you. Looking for a new fork for my talon that wont trigger a divorce.

    Also, youtube is your friend, do some searching and you will find lots of instructional videos on this....

  16. #16
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    thanks dennis,

    ya, she was pissed that i bought a $650 bike, and even more pissed when i broke a reflector off the stock pedals.

    so i will have to find a black fork and sneak the new one on there.

    at least she doesnt look to hard at the bike.

    as long as i stay black and white. lol

  17. #17
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    Good explanation Dennis.

    Rick, the 44 comes in black but is a different shade and stantions are black.

  18. #18
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    Dirt Devil or Dennis,what do you think of some of the RockShox budget models. Like the tora and recon?

  19. #19
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    how bout an epicon?

  20. #20
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    Would prefer an Epicon before a cheap Rock Shox or will convert the front hub to 9mm and get a Reba.

  21. #21
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    Gents thanks. I held off on buying the Talon 2. The store is ordering it for me as it is a model they stock no need to put down on it. The manager will extend the sale price to the 2012 Talon 1 or XTC 2 that they dont carry, which is nice and makes it harder now.

    The Talon 1 upgrades to avid elixir 1 hydros and SRAM x5 rd. front fork gets lockout.
    For $180 more I think

    XTC 2 gets some alivio/deore components, 9 speed, Marzocchi 44 TST2, QR15 thru-axle, tapered steerer fork for $370 more than the Talon 1 the price of upgrading the Talon 1 fork.

    I feel I will replace the front fork on the Talon's in the next few months and when you factor that cost into the purchase it puts me close to the xtc from the Talon 1. The other thing I have had hydro breaks on my cannondales in the past and have a mechanical on a Mohave, that is a bike i have for people visiting the island, that i have been riding it and the mechanical breaks have been fine for me so far.

    Tough call on spending for the components. I do like the idea of the Talon 2 and getting a new fork then replacing what needs to be replaced later and slow paying the cost, but I know if I get the xtc 2 it will probably end up being cheaper for me in the long run.

    Are the upgrades to the 2012 Talon 1 and the XTC 2 dollar for dollar worth it?

  22. #22
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    They're about the same geometry wise but the XTC is stiffer and has a tapered head tube.

    For the money I would get the upgraded Talon 1 and eventually get a better fork. If you plan on eventually racing both bikes can handle it but the XTC will be the better choice on the long run for that purpose.

  23. #23
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    Thanks I am leaning towards the Talon 1 but wish it had 9 Spd and 15mm thru axle like the xtc 2. I like the slight upgrade to the crank from the Talon 2 to the 1 to the xtc. I had issues with bending some older ones.

    I just hope the fork performs well enough for a few months and I am not buying a new one right away from disgust. If that is the case then I am at the xtc 2 price very quickly.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ranger Mac View Post
    Thanks I am leaning towards the Talon 1 but wish it had 9 Spd and 15mm thru axle like the xtc 2. I like the slight upgrade to the crank from the Talon 2 to the 1 to the xtc. I had issues with bending some older ones.

    I just hope the fork performs well enough for a few months and I am not buying a new one right away from disgust. If that is the case then I am at the xtc 2 price very quickly.
    I have had the Talon 1 since 2011 and it has performed well. I have replaced the seat (Specialized Saddle), seat post with a Thomson, chains and sprockets. Other than that the thing has been great. I might upgrade the wheel set sometime soon.

  25. #25
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    ^^^Wonder what the OP bought, seeing the last post was almost a year ago and he was last online 3 months ago........

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