El Mariachi or Karate Monkey or...?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    El Mariachi or Karate Monkey or...?

    Im in the market for a nice rigid 29er frame. Steel preferably. I had a Karate Monkey a few years back and just loved it. It was sold to make room for another bike in a crowded stable.
    Right now my choices are a NOS 2007 El Mariachi (with the EBB) or another KM. Price is practically the same. Use will be XC, trailriding, commuting, geared but sometimes Singlespeed.

    If the El Mariachi is as fun as the KM, but lighter, I'm sold on that. What do you think?

  2. #2
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    I'd look at the El Mariachi both are in my back yard and both solid but the Salsa uses nicer steel, plus I like their new dropout.
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  3. #3
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    The 2007 El Mariachi has an eccentric BB, while the KM has horizontal track ends with a derailleur hanger. I personally think that the eccentric BB is less of a pain to deal. I haven't had any issues with the BB of my 2008 Mariachi.

    Both are good frames, but El Mariachi has a nicer tubeset and an eccentric BB. You do have the option of running v-brakes on the KM though, if you are into that.

  4. #4
    CB2
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    Tough choice.
    Weight-wise I think you'll find it's a wash, as the ebb insert adds to the weight of the EM.
    There isn't a name brand sticker on the KM tubeset, but it is quality butted steel.
    The ebb makes it a breeze changing gears on the EM, but the KM frame is more versatile with all it's braze-ons.

  5. #5
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    If you've had a KM and enjoyed it - why not get another one?

    That being said, we have both a 07 El Mar and 08 KM in the garage. Can't go wrong with either.


    Caveat: the El Mar limited edition is one of my most lustworthy bike frames - too bad I can't find a NOS XL.......
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  6. #6
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    Sorry for my errors, my english is really bad, I'm italian. I see you had a KM in the past.
    Your choise depedes about what would you like to do.
    I see KM as a battle frame, cheap but a quality and a tough frame, to abuse of it.However is not so light as the Mariachi.
    El Mariachi seems like a stilish frame, i love it.If you intend to use for xc racing and singlespeed, i see Salsa better than KM.For commuting i would prefer the KM.
    Both the frame are from the same group, Salsa and Surly.It depends by you.You had the KM, get a new experience with Salsa.
    Cheers from Italy.See ya.

  7. #7
    jrm
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    Used?

    Quote Originally Posted by cobym2
    Im in the market for a nice rigid 29er frame. Steel preferably. I had a Karate Monkey a few years back and just loved it. It was sold to make room for another bike in a crowded stable.
    Right now my choices are a NOS 2007 El Mariachi (with the EBB) or another KM. Price is practically the same. Use will be XC, trailriding, commuting, geared but sometimes Singlespeed.

    If the El Mariachi is as fun as the KM, but lighter, I'm sold on that. What do you think?
    also consider the Niner offerings..

  8. #8
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    I Picked up a NOS 2007 EM a few months ago & I am loving it.
    I do not think you could go wrong with either bike.

  9. #9
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    ..or OS Blackbuck?

  10. #10
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    Go El Mar. Other choices in the same price range would be the Voodoo Soukri, Soma Juice, and the Vassagos.

  11. #11
    Rider and Wrench
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    I am biased as I love my 08' el Mariachi- This said it would really depend on what my intentions were- your's are fairly broad and both bikes are up to the tasks

    Surly KM
    -Shorter Chain stays, easier to loft the front and very quick/agile on the tight stuff
    - Great 1X9 or SS but if you ever run a front Der there are only a few that will work on the KM as the short chain stays don't leave too much room for a der-
    -built like a brick out house- maybe a bit more utilitarian

    El Mar (07-09')
    -ECC BB if kept clean and lubed works great, once you let it get gritty and dirty... then slip your on a steep and slippery slope...
    - the long stays offer some additional stability, and keep the front end down when climbing, it has always made me hit climbs with more gusto - the stability comes at a slight compromise as it is not as agile in super tight turns- not a huge thing to overcome but a difference to consider
    -the longer stays and ox steel make the frame very forgiving-
    -very lively frame feel, a plain old blast to ride
    -the Cromo fork is very sweet as well, fairly light and forgiving yet sharp handling on the trails

    At the same price I think the Mariachi is tough to beat and I think it is a better value- normally the Mariachi's were almost twice as much as a KM-

    Is the EM Blue or Green? Love both but the Green is one of my favorites-

    Good Luck
    I Just wish I could ride more!


  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by knottshore
    I am biased as I love my 08' el Mariachi- This said it would really depend on what my intentions were- your's are fairly broad and both bikes are up to the tasks

    Surly KM
    -Shorter Chain stays, easier to loft the front and very quick/agile on the tight stuff
    - Great 1X9 or SS but if you ever run a front Der there are only a few that will work on the KM as the short chain stays don't leave too much room for a der-
    -built like a brick out house- maybe a bit more utilitarian

    El Mar (07-09')
    -ECC BB if kept clean and lubed works great, once you let it get gritty and dirty... then slip your on a steep and slippery slope...
    - the long stays offer some additional stability, and keep the front end down when climbing, it has always made me hit climbs with more gusto - the stability comes at a slight compromise as it is not as agile in super tight turns- not a huge thing to overcome but a difference to consider
    -the longer stays and ox steel make the frame very forgiving-
    -very lively frame feel, a plain old blast to ride
    -the Cromo fork is very sweet as well, fairly light and forgiving yet sharp handling on the trails

    At the same price I think the Mariachi is tough to beat and I think it is a better value- normally the Mariachi's were almost twice as much as a KM-

    Is the EM Blue or Green? Love both but the Green is one of my favorites-

    Good Luck
    Quote 100%.

  13. #13
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    Thanks for all the help. Great input from everyone. I'm leaning towards the El Mariachi myself. Nothing against the Karate Monkey, im just interested in trying out another frame.

    FWIW, the mariachi is blue. The color and the design is what attracted me at first.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by cobym2
    Thanks for all the help. Great input from everyone. I'm leaning towards the El Mariachi myself. Nothing against the Karate Monkey, im just interested in trying out another frame.

    FWIW, the mariachi is blue. The color and the design is what attracted me at first.
    Color is the most determining factor when purchasing a bike, no seriously.

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