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  1. #1
    Twin Six METAL
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    Newbie bike and rental questions (Womens input needed)

    Okay, so I'm not a newbie, but my wife is. This past weekend was great, I got her out onto the trails with me and we had a great time. We went to Elvis Presley Lakes, thanks to the recommendation of Dex, Thanks Dex. It was a great trail, not too hard, short climbs. But I didn't think the ride was fair. While I'm 180 lbs and riding a sub 24 lb full suspension, my wife was left to agonize on all the hills using her 110 lb body to push a 33 lb hardtail along the trail. Just doesn't seem fair, does it?

    Okay so I'm looking to hook her up with a much nicer ride. But I'm not sure what to get her, not sure what will fit her the best. Does anyone know where I can rent a Santa Cruz Juliana, or a Specialized Stumpjumper FSR Womens? These are the best women specific design bikes on the market, and I'd like to see if they fit her well.

    Here's the deal though, many of us have made the jump from hardtail to full suspension. Some of us claim that we are better riders due to the switch. But how much weight is it worth to gain the performance? Would you rather have a really nice lightweight (22-25 lb) hardtail, or a nice full suspension (27-28 lbs)?

    Let me know,
    SWP

  2. #2
    consistent default champ
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    Depends on her biking goals

    If she is just riding for fun and would rather be comfortable than fast, go with the FS. I have had lots of others say it is easier to learn a new trick on a FS than a HT.
    If she is going to need speed (like for racing) than I would say the hard tail. It teaches you to get out of the saddle if nothing else!

    I can't help with the rental because I am in SC. I have only rented a Kona one time to see if I like riding or not.

  3. #3
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    Don't focus solely on WSD. Most of the women I ride with ride men's bikes because they fit better. I ride a men's small FS and a 17" (mens) HT. Just because it's WSD, doesn't mean it fits all (or even most) women. Check out the small size men's frame for fit. Unless your wife has a short torso, chances are the WSD won't fit. Of the roughly 100 women in our women's mtb club, I would venture to guess that maybe 20 (or less) have WSD bikes.

    Do a search in the "women's lounge". There are TONS of threads about this.

    For the money, you can get a mediocre FS or a really nice HT. For a beginner, I still recommend the HT because you don't know if she's really going to stick with it. It sounds like from your original post that she's only been on one trail ride. I wouldn't spend a crazy amount of money at this point. Maybe in the $500-$600 range to get her something that is trail worthy and not heavy as a brick. This would necessitate a decent HT, as *most* FS in this range are crappy. This has been covered ad nauseum in the "beginners" forum.

    Sorry if I'm saying stuff you already know, but I thought it might have been worth saying.

  4. #4
    Dex
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    Quote Originally Posted by sworkspilot
    We went to Elvis Presley Lakes, thanks to the recommendation of Dex, Thanks Dex. It was a great trail, not too hard, short climbs. SWP
    Thanks! Glad ya'll were able to make it.
    Noxubee Hills Trail System's FB page
    http://www.facebook.com/pages/Noxube...8499244?v=wall

  5. #5
    Twin Six METAL
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    Hey everyone, thanks for all your input. I did find that a bike shop in Birmingham will rent the bikes I mentioned, but I don't know if that's something that we're going to do right now. My wife isn't as gung ho about mtn biking as I am. I was just hoping she'd let me get her a new bike or build her a bike so I had a bike to work on. I think I'm just addicted to making bikes better. I think I'm going to have to start a bike shop, just so I can play!

    Hey Dex, you're going out to Nox this weekend, which day is that? I'm interested in joining you. I do have some stuff to take care of this weekend, but I'm pretty sure that I can manage to get out for a day of good riding. And by the way, I'm definately up for the route that you had mentioned.

    SWP

  6. #6
    Dex
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    Quote Originally Posted by sworkspilot
    Hey Dex, you're going out to Nox this weekend, which day is that? I'm interested in joining you. I do have some stuff to take care of this weekend, but I'm pretty sure that I can manage to get out for a day of good riding. And by the way, I'm definately up for the route that you had mentioned.
    SWP
    Hey SWP, it looks as if Sunday afternoon is a "go". It looks as if the Bulldawg group is going to ride at the South Trailhead. I guess we can decided that day in with route to take.
    Give me a holler when you get a chance.
    Dex
    Noxubee Hills Trail System's FB page
    http://www.facebook.com/pages/Noxube...8499244?v=wall

  7. #7
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    Just wanted to chime in. I saw the post saying she isn't gung ho about mtn biking but just in case she changes her mind, I wanted to give my input.

    First of all, if she has a proper bike, she might be gung ho about it because her experience would be so much better. Also, as someone else posted, don't automatically go to WSD bikes. I don't ride a WSD. They don't fit me. I have found that WSD's only fit really small women. Don't just buy her a bike, let her "try on" many bikes to see which ones fit best.

    Also, I would definately go with HT. I teach many beginners to ride and I recommend all beginners start out on HT. I feel that HT helps new riders learn skills and finesse easier than an FS. The reason is because HT's force you off of that seat. For some reason, the hardest thing for me to do is to get beginners' butts off of that seat. They want to sit down all the time.

    Anyway, just my .02 worth.

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