• 12-10-2012
    bike recommendations (help pls)
    trying to get my daughter on a 26" or 29". she rides aggressive single track trails with my wife and I. she is currently on a 24" wheel bike and has been asking for a better setup esp when it comes to the from shock.

    does anyone in this lounge have any feedback on trek or specialized? wsd bikes.

    this is what I'm looking at


  • 12-11-2012
    Hi there-

    how old/tall is she, and did she test them? what is she comfortable on? If she's on a 24" now, I'd image a 29'r would be a big step up in bb height and all, dunno her stats tho. Also, I noticed both bikes are hardtails. You say she's an aggressive rider, did you consider a full-suspension bike? She might like the control of a FS bike in fast / techy stuff. Sorry, don't have experience with WSD bikes, always rode small mens mtn bikes.
  • 12-11-2012
    If possible, I would make a firm decision on the budget, then see what the local shops have in that range in her size (wsd or not), and let her try a few and pick. Typically bikes at the same price are going to be pretty competitive with each other. One might spend more on drivetrain, one on the shock or other components, but they're not going to be radically different. This method will also free her up to pick based partly on the look of the bike. :)
  • 12-11-2012
    I have a Specialized Myka Expert 29er and I love it. It fits me like a glove and has been very durable. It is not particularly lightweight. The front shock has 80mm travel, I believe. You might consider bikes with more front suspension travel if she is going to ride aggressively. Men's bikes might fit her as well; as I recall the WSD bikes have very minor tweaks in geometry and the suspensions are set for lighter weight riders. Maybe the grips are smaller.

    I would advise that you set aside a dad/daughter day to do some serious shopping and test-riding after deciding on your budget (and sharing that number with her). I find that shopping with my son is a fun bonding experience for us.

    Agreed, appearance is an important part of bike love.
  • 12-11-2012
    I also ride a men's bike. Another thought is to consider Jamis (I might be biased) or Giant. You can get a little more "bang for your buck." Unless, you get a deal at the Trek/Specialized dealer.
  • 12-14-2012
    Any with a Suntour fork will not perform on more difficult trails. No adjustable rebound damping means it pogos when going over multiple bumps at speed. RS XC 32 on the Trek is good but heavy. A dual air Reba off ebay could upgrade a Suntour bike.
  • 12-15-2012

    Originally Posted by md247 View Post
    she rides aggressive single track trails with my wife and I. she is currently on a 24" wheel bike

    What age and how tall and what is her weight? Aggressive? In what manner? Is she a hucker and descent biased and starting to venture in to FR/DH? Is a short travel HT really what she's looking for? Personally, I have a bunch of bikes and I wouldn't use any of those for an aggressive trail. Or do you still just mean XC trails?

    Also, going from a 24" to a 29er is a fairly large move. Is she really that big? Is she like a clown on a small bike on the 24" bike? What is her current 24" bike? The kid's 24" bikes have some variation in geometry, but some of the ETT measurements are around 19"-20". Going up to a small 29'er can be a fairly large jump in size. You'll probably want to get some measurements and see what "fits" and how much more growth you expect.

    Spec-wise, I don't like the Myka you linked. It's low end. The fork would be the first thing to go, and since you're looking for a better fork, this is not an upgrade to what you find stock on 24" bikes. SR Suntour XCM, more or less the same fork that she has already.

    The Cali SL has slightly better geometry and much better parts, particularly the fork, but I suspect you're looking at the base level Cali....which has the same fork as the Myka, and most likely the same fork as your 24" bike. Needless to say, I would pass on that too. I would get the Cali SL though, not the others.

    Honestly, hardtails like these are a dime a dozen. Set your budget first, measure your daughter for fit (not just height and inseam, but every single thing for a full fitting) look for a specific set of bikes, narrow it down, and then present choices to your daughter.

    Since you mentioned you want a better shock, look for air. The Rockshox Reba SL on the Cali SL is a better fork and being dual air, it is easier to adjust for rider weight. It's also a lighter weight fork, and not the heavy hunk of junk like the SR Suntour XCM.

    If you're not opposed to replacing parts immediately, then you can shop solely based on fit and looks. You will need a bigger budget though, a good bit above $1000 USD. Even the Cali S, I would avoid. Cali SL is where I would look for an aggressive lightweight rider. Since you mentioned she's on a 24" bike, I'm thinking your daughter is probably around 10-12yo, if she's average sized and on the verge of moving up. All air suspension is where I would go.

    FWIW, I have a custom built 24" bike for my 8yo son with a RockShox SID XC (circa 2000), and has a better weight bias front to rear instead of having a 6lb fork on the front. The fork is way better than anything you can buy in stock form.
  • 12-15-2012
    Thank you all of the input. She gets to test ride bikes at our LBS all the time & the shop has a trade in program every year so I have the opportunity to get her a new setup as she grows. ( all 4 of my kids ride)

    The 29'ers were just too big (even though she loved riding specialized fate). She's 4'8" now, so ill let her grow into a fate in a couple of years.

    I went with the 13" Myka 26" expert disk. I also ordered a new 80-100mm Reba RL. While the bike is heavier than I wanted, I can build some wheels and replace a few parts as we go.

    We live in PHX, so most of our riding is packed single track, and we ride in Sedona 3/4 times a year.

    Again, thanks for the help. Our first ride on the new rig will be a night ride this Friday night.