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Thread: XTC 1 vs XTC 3

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    XTC 1 vs XTC 3

    Hey all,
    I am looking to perhaps add another bike to my fleet. I want a lighter, more XC-oriented bike for the tamer trails I sometimes ride nearby. The XTC series seems a good choice.
    Wondering if any of you have either the XTC composite 1 or 3. I am more curious if spending the extra ~$800 for the XTC 1 is worth it. I realize Fox is generally a better shock than Rock Shocks, but I am wondering that will matter much if I am not using the shocks as much on tamer trails.
    Also curious of a weight differences of the two. I plan on getting a medium. Sounds like the XTC 1 has a better wheelset than the 3 but is that significant? If I go with the 3 I could upgrade components over time since the frame is the same (I assume it is) but if I went with 1 I would have nicer components but less $ in my pocket! Help! I need your opinions and testimonials! Thanks!

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    Can't really speak of the difference on which is better, but I will address the Fox is "generally better shock than Rock Shocks" and possibly that will help a little.

    Fox is thought to be THE fork and although many companies put them on their high end bikes, it doesn't necessarily mean one is better than the other. In the end, it comes comes down to what your riding style is and preference. Some people are Fox fanatics while others are loyal to Rock Shox. Some prefer Manitou, DT Swiss, Magura, White Brothers or X-Fusion. Don't get me wrong. I ride an XTC 1 (26er) with a Fox F32 fork, but there are many people that would argue that a Rock Shox SID is better than a Fox Talas or vice versa. So don't let the fact that the bike has a Rock Shox on there give you the impression that its lesser of a bike than one with a Fox on there.

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    Yeah I just can't decide if $800 is worth the diff. To me the wheels would matter more than the shock.

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    Anyone else have any insights? The XTC's are sexy bikes!

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    I think that for the money you are spending for the 3, the cranks and especially the brakes, are shameful...though for the quality of frame you are getting, it may be a mitigating factor for you. The Recon Gold is a very acceptable fork for 'XC' riding, though.

    My experiences with the Elixir 1 brakes have been very poor, so irrespective of anything else, that alone would steer me away from the bike.

    To answer your question about the wheels, the XTC 1 does not use Giant's aftermarket wheels (which would be tubeless ready), but the front hub is better than the XTC 3.

    If you can swing it, the componentry on the XTC 1 is better out of the gate, and would resist upgrading longer than the XTC 3.
    Last edited by wschruba; 03-12-2013 at 08:44 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by wschruba View Post
    I think that for the money you are spending for the 3, the cranks and especially the brakes, are shameful...though for the quality of frame you are getting, it may be a mitigating factor for you. The Recon Gold is a very acceptable fork for 'XC' riding, though.

    My experiences with the Elixir 1 brakes have been very poor, so irrespective of anything else, that alone would steer me away from the bike.

    To answer your question about the wheels, the XTC 1 does not use Giant's aftermarket wheels (which would be tubeless ready), but the front hub is better than the XTC 3.

    If you can swing it, the componentry on the XTC 1 is better out of the gate, and would resist upgrading longer than the XTC 3.
    Thanks for the info. I guess it depend on my financial situation after I sell my old second bike. I am more of a "trail" or "AM" rider, but I would like a light, snappy hardtail for some of the easier, more remote trails near me. Either way, I drool every time I look at the XTC!

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    I wondered the same thing and went with the XTC1. Too many upgrades to do on the 3 and I can't own another bike with Avid brakes.

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    There isn't much of a weight diff of the two is theer? 2 lbs or so? As soon as I can sell my old bike I will make a decision on the new one.

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    Get the XTC 1, the only upgrading you will be making, is getting a lighter wheelset.

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    My problem is the money issue. The XTC 1 is a lot more expensive. Also spendy as a second bike.

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    I just took the XTC 1 for a long demo ride (187km). Pretty nice man! I did a review vid today on my youtube channel if you check it out.

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    I bought my XTC 1 on Saturday. Had the wheels converted to tubeless by the shop I purchased from. I Picked up an XT cogset on the way home, (11-36) same as stock. Rode on Sunday in an area I ride often and bettered all my segments. I'm coming off a 26" 2010 Stumpjumper Comp w/ Crest Wheelset - 23 pounds. Stock XTC 1 bike with std XT pedals, XT cogset, stock wheels converted to tubeless and ODI grips weighs 24.8 pounds. I'll upgrade the wheels when I need to. The bike is awesome and if I had more money to spend I probably would have stayed with Specialized. I'm glad I found the Giant.
    Oh yeah, Durian Rider, you rock! Saw your video after you won the January Strava Challenge and started the Engine 2 28 day challege 29 days ago and am down 12 pounds. Thanks!

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    i have the xtc 1. havent ridden the 3.
    the fork is the evolution, so thats the lower end fork fox produces (after that i believe you have performance and then factory?).

    The slx brakes are great. great stopping power. super happy.

    The wheels are heavyish you would have to say. but after intial retensioning i havent had probs. still true after 2000km of hard riding. i'm pleased.

    The drive train is great.

    The fizik saddle sucked. too flat and narrow. i have average sit bones. changed to specialized henge saddle and it improved the ride no end.

    The schwable performance tires are rubbish in my opinion. took me no time to shred them. now have nobby nics and much happier.

    The bike is great. once i sorted the fit out its been briliant. I'm happy with it and glad i bought the higher model. set and forget...apart from the wheels which will eventually be upgraded. but the wheels have performed so well (after retensioning them) i'm in no hurry.

    Weight, well, i dont know. it aint super light but the carbon appears strong (mind you i put some shelter on the underside of the downtube) and ive had rocks pinging off it no probs. Chainslap will happen on the UNDERSIDE of the chainstay due to the offset nature of the chainstay design (the drive side is lower than the non). i just put shelter on there. I'm no weight weenie anyhow. The frame is stiff and has a nice ride quality. If you buy the 1 you are getting good value i believe.

    for me, if i bought the xtc 3 (actually not available here in australia) i would have concerns about the wheels and brakes. Aside from that i would imagine i could be well satisfied. Have no idea of the wheelset strength (which is most important to me). As for brakes i really need strong brakes and i would have concerns about the avid 1's. I have ridden bikes with avid 5 and 7's and they seem ok. But i am super happy with the slx on the xtc 1 to be honest. They add a good deal to the enjoyment of the ride with great stopping power with minimal effort = less stress on the hands and wrists.
    Last edited by 911Holy$; 03-26-2013 at 04:23 AM.

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    I might have to go the XTC 3 route because of money. I would be putting a new wheelset on it had I got the XTC 1 anyway. I would probably just put new components on it whenever I got the money. Anyone have the XTC 3 here?

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    Buy the XTC 1, you wouldn't regret it! The XTC 3, you would have to spend more money trying to get it how you like it. For the XTC 1, all you would need is to convert to tubeless for a few bucks .

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    Anyone know if you can put a quick release on the seat post on a carbon XTC frame?

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    Re: XTC 1 vs XTC 3

    Yes, just find a compatible sized clamp.
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    I know it is physically possible, but since it is carbon the manufacturer may not recommend it. I know many XC race bikes are not designed for quick releases. Can anyone confirm? I have heard all sorts of answers on this question.

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    That's pretty ridiculous really. There is no reason a carbon frame couldn't handle the repeated stress of clamping/unclamping a frame any less than brittle aluminum. The only reason you see non QR clamps on carbon bikes is because they are heavier and most carbon frames are for XC where you don't drop your post all the time.
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    XTC 1 vs XTC 3-2013-04-04_18-24-46_671.jpg

    Well, pulled the trigger on the XTC 1. Got a pretty good deal IMO. Bike feels snappy as all get out and climbs like a billy goat. I am not a big fan of the stock rubber, or the fact that the stock wheels aren't tubeless ready. I have heard people say the wheelset is heavy, but as someone who normally rides AM and trail, they feel pretty dang light. Got a torque wrench for the seat post (reall sucks a quick release voids warranty, really sucks...). Eventually I will make it tubeless and maybe throw on a bit wider bar (at the expense of handling but I like em wide). For some reason my bike had Rock Shox fork on it and not Fox. Works fine for me though.

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    Sweet!

    Not sure of the weights on the XTC but some people spend a lot more than $800 to lose a few pounds, ask me how I know .

    Can't see why a quick release on seat tube would void warranty-way easier to over tighten bolt than squeeze the QR! Also I've seen the stress tests on carbon vs aluminum frames and the newer carbon construction that most of the big companies use is amazingly strong. Check out some of the videos on youtube to see what they put these frames through.

    Good luck with your new ride!

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    Quote Originally Posted by GnarBrahWyo View Post
    For some reason my bike had Rock Shox fork on it and not Fox. Works fine for me though.
    In 2012, Giant started using Rock Shox on their XTC 1 bikes instead of Fox. Not sure why. Is that a Recon Gold?

  23. #23
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    Yeah it's Recon I think. I seem to like its responsiveness. I have gotten different answers from everyone on the quick release question, I suppose I should check Giant them selves. Or maybe I should learn to live with a bike that doesnt have an adjustable seatpost.

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    Wow, looks exactly like mine except for the fork? Tomorrow will be 2 weeks and it's a great bike, I can't believe I waited so long. My dealer installed Stans tape and stems on the stock rims when I purchased the bike. 120 miles and no issues with the tires. My tires aren't the OEM Rocket Rons, they are the Snakeskin, TLR, EVO tires upgraded with the tubeless conversion. I will probably switch to Specialized tires when I upgrade to Stans Wheels. Maybe it will lose some weight then. The bike is almost 2 pounds (1.8) heavier that my 26" 2010 Stumpjumper Carbon Comp w/Stans Crest wheels, but this bike is way faster, much stiffer.

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    Bike is incredibly stiff and fast. Yeah the stock tires totally blow but that is my next upgrade. So far I love the bike.

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