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  1. #1
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    VT : Too much bike?

    I am thinking about getting a VT3 (wish I could afford the VT2) but I never do any freeriding, drops, or big jumps. I only ride cross-country and am wondering if functionally the bike is too much for my purposes. I ride a Klein hardtail which has been a great bike but it's 8 yrs old and in desperate need of some costly upgrades so I am thinking of taking the plunge and getting fs. The VT3 falls in my price range and I feel some loyalty to the local giant dealer because they have been the most helpful and informative. I should say that I like to ride aggressive cc with lots of roots and rocks and I know I'd love the plush travel but I might have some regrets considering the weight penalty. Should I look elsewhere?

  2. #2
    Maestro
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    The VT is a great bike. Smooth as silk ride, flys down hills. Long wheelbase, stable and versatile.

    But, as you mentioned weight is an issue, and climbing performance. You will need to sit and spin on climbs. If you need to stand and hammer, get ready for BOB to join the party!

    I too had a Klein Hardtail, switching to the VT is the complete opposite of the spectrum. (Almost like a cadillac ride)

    I have since sold my VT and I now own a much modified NRS. The NRS frame and shock is 1.5#'s lighter than the VT and climbs like the old klein (No BOB under load)

    Just my $.02

  3. #3
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    Because I already went through what you are facing now, and the decisions I had to make are approximately the same as what you are facing...let me tell you that after experiencing the joy of having a full suspension bike, I would never go back to a hard tail.

    I'm not a hardcore or expert rider, but I really appreciate the plush smoothness and the way that the suspension just soaks up all the lumps and bumps on the trails. Sections that used to pound the crap outta me are just so much easier now, and the "weight penalty" is not even noticeable to me.

    Modern SPV platform systems with their stable no-bob pedalling are incredibly good to ride. I'm sooooooooooooooo happy that I went to a full suspension system, and the Giant is a lovely bike. Imo, you would NOT be sorry if you purchased one.

    R.

  4. #4
    XC rider/racer
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    Vt

    I agree with what Rainman and Maestro have said.
    Given the efficient pedalling of the VT i didnt find the stock weight to be much of an issue.
    If you ride rocks/roots as you mentioned, you`ll really enjoy the 5"+ of travel.....the rougher the trail, the more the VT shines.

  5. #5
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    There's no such thing as too much bike

    Quote Originally Posted by Andy
    the rougher the trail, the more the VT shines.
    Well said!

    The VT shines on the rough and flies downhill, there's nothing in the market that can match its performance. It's like a freeride bike on a diet.

  6. #6
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    i don't find weight an issue at all and it pedals so good!

    the wheelset is really light, so i find it accelerates well and feels nimble....

    i'm about 5'10 and have found the 18.5 inch a little big.... maybe i should've got a 16inch.....

    the VT is a great bike

  7. #7
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    I'm 5'8" and run the 16.5. The top tube is short but the bike standover height is high for a small frame. I had to use a longer stem and a setback post to make some room.

  8. #8
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    Hi, I'm 5'10" and run the rear at 5.7" and the front with a Marzocchi EXR Pro at 125 mm - the standover height of the 16.5" frame is right for me especially when you get to technical uphill sections. I use the longest Thomseat setback available and it works just fine for me.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by wotzapollohimalaya
    i don't find weight an issue at all and it pedals so good!

    the wheelset is really light, so i find it accelerates well and feels nimble....

    i'm about 5'10 and have found the 18.5 inch a little big.... maybe i should've got a 16inch.....

    the VT is a great bike
    Really!!?? I'm about 5'10 also, and I was worried that the 18.5 was a little bit small. Thanks for your message Wotza - I'm now convinced - It's Perfect!

    Cheers!

  10. #10
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    Good job! Vt=fun

    The VT is not to much bike. If you are really worried about the weight...you can change tires,tubes, and pedals and get the feel of a much lighter bike. The VT is solid....can take abuse...and is a blast to ride...you won't believe the areas you will ride vs a hardtail due to the suspension.

  11. #11
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    DM, you need to really define if you prefer pure XC or trail riding. If you really want to go as fast as possible without regard for plushness, go for an NRS. The VT you are looking at does not have the Minute 1 fork, which I think is required to have a truly balanced stable peddaling platform. Having riddent the NRS for a few years, and now being on a VT 1 for about 6 months, I love the VT, but my primary driver is not racing, but enjoying all the mountain has to offer...fast downhills, climbs, jumps, etc. It is a fine line, but a real XC guy is going to be much happier with the NRS than a VT. (I finally got the settings right for running my VT sort of like an NRS when I want it that way, but at the end of the day, the VT is a VT, and an NRS is an NRS.)

  12. #12
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    yeah i agree with spongedog, the VT is more of a fun, see what the mountain has to offer type of bike.

  13. #13
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    Get the VT. I was in a similar situation a few weeks ago. Riding a fun but OLD '92 Diamond Back Ascent I built up with XT etc when I was a shop rat.. Loved the bike but wanted FS.

    I got a great deal on a VT3 locally and 1yr financing which sealed the deal. I have had one real serious ride on it and a bunch of playing here at home, LOVE IT!!!

    Propper set-up is key. I had an issue with leaking SPV fitting (fixed in 5min by dealer) which let the bike bob real bad even on the flats after about 30min of riding, but when I would pump up the SPV chamber she was smooth and fluid as silk!!! I mean it, very plush and super absorbent when needed, but smooth pedalling and being able to climb some things siting down is nice rather than having to stand up and balance front/rear weight climbing.. Sit back and crank.. I tried the NRS as well, but when I looked at it, I have a reliable and still very enjoyable hard-tail to ride if I wan to do fast pure XC riding, so why have a FS that wants to be a XC bike, I went for the FS so I can enjoy anything that comes along.. See a jump or even a car with ramps in front of you? no problemVT loves to play!!

    If I remember correct the dealer said 50-75lbs in the SPV and then roughly your weight in psi for the main chamber. I ended up going 20psi over my weight for the main and love it.
    '93 DB Ascent HT, Manitou front shock, XT Der's, SRT500's, SS7 with 987's
    '04 Giant VT3, bone stock

  14. #14
    Combat Wombat
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    Actually...

    Quote Originally Posted by lamrith
    Get the VT. I was in a similar situation a few weeks ago. Riding a fun but OLD '92 Diamond Back Ascent I built up with XT etc when I was a shop rat.. Loved the bike but wanted FS.

    I got a great deal on a VT3 locally and 1yr financing which sealed the deal. I have had one real serious ride on it and a bunch of playing here at home, LOVE IT!!!

    Propper set-up is key. I had an issue with leaking SPV fitting (fixed in 5min by dealer) which let the bike bob real bad even on the flats after about 30min of riding, but when I would pump up the SPV chamber she was smooth and fluid as silk!!! I mean it, very plush and super absorbent when needed, but smooth pedalling and being able to climb some things siting down is nice rather than having to stand up and balance front/rear weight climbing.. Sit back and crank.. I tried the NRS as well, but when I looked at it, I have a reliable and still very enjoyable hard-tail to ride if I wan to do fast pure XC riding, so why have a FS that wants to be a XC bike, I went for the FS so I can enjoy anything that comes along.. See a jump or even a car with ramps in front of you? no problemVT loves to play!!

    If I remember correct the dealer said 50-75lbs in the SPV and then roughly your weight in psi for the main chamber. I ended up going 20psi over my weight for the main and love it.
    It is 50-75% of your body weight in the SPV chamber and, as per Giant's recommendations, start at 20lbs under your body weight for pressure in the main chamber. Fine tune the SPV pressure to your personal preference for the stable platform and play with the main chamber pressure to get your prefered sag. Manitou's website gives almost identical information.
    SPV is still a fairly new concept and anybody that I have found with any knowledge is still playing with it themselves, trying to find that perfect setup. Take whatever anyone tells you with a grain of salt, including LBS's.

    Brian

  15. #15
    Hud
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    There was some talk earlier in this thread about bike size/person hight. I'm 6' 2 and wondering what size I should get. Obviously in the end it boils down to personal preference.
    I thought with a medium frame instead of a large, the issue of the seatpole hitting the shock won't be such a problem as the seat will be generally higher. (I raise and lower the seatpole a bit for climbs/descents.)

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hud
    There was some talk earlier in this thread about bike size/person hight. I'm 6' 2 and wondering what size I should get. Obviously in the end it boils down to personal preference.
    I thought with a medium frame instead of a large, the issue of the seatpole hitting the shock won't be such a problem as the seat will be generally higher. (I raise and lower the seatpole a bit for climbs/descents.)
    For the VT at least GIiant does "normal" sizing in inches. At 6'2" the 20.5 might be ok, It seems REALLY tall stanging next to it, but once you get on and it sags everything is good!!


    YEah I am still tinkering with the shock like everyone else, so far as it is set I love it. I should have probably said +/-20psi from body wieght, sorry about that.
    '93 DB Ascent HT, Manitou front shock, XT Der's, SRT500's, SS7 with 987's
    '04 Giant VT3, bone stock

  17. #17
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    I'm 6'2 and speaking from Giant to Giant...the 20.5 is perfect. I wouldn't go any smaller actually. It seems tall because of the high BB height. Once you're on the bike and the sag is set properly, it feels fine. How long is your inseam. Mine is 35", if that helps. I feel super comfortable on this size coming from a 18.5 NRS (reason for upgrading...too small). Hope that helps!

  18. #18
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    Yeah I am very happy with the 20.5, no worries there. She settles right in once I get on.
    '93 DB Ascent HT, Manitou front shock, XT Der's, SRT500's, SS7 with 987's
    '04 Giant VT3, bone stock

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