Old bike stolen—time for a new one. WHAT SHOULD I GET???- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
    Trail Cubist
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    Old bike stolen—time for a new one. WHAT SHOULD I GET???

    Well, it finally happened—after 10 happy years and thousands of miles of riding, my beloved 2009 Gary Fisher HiFi Pro (with upgraded 1x12 drivetrain) was stolen off the roof of my car in Sacramento, CA (I was traveling there for work—I'm from Eugene, Oregon). It was locked to the roof rack with a steel cable (I know, useless—but was intended as a deterrent, not bombproof protection). Cable cut, bike gone (sans front wheel which was locked in the car, so I have that as a memento, LOL).

    So now it's time for YET ANOTHER "What bike should I buy???" thread! (Aren't you THRILLED!!! LOL)

    And I know all about how bike technology has evolved, any new bike will be leagues better than my old GF, etc. :-) (I'm not sure I buy all of that, but irrelevant now!)

    So here's what I'm looking at...

    • BUDGET: $1500-2500 (maybe $3K in a stretch if it really gets me a lot more)
    • NEW or USED: I'm fine with a second-hand bike as long as it hasn't been beat to hell.
    • FULL SUSPENSION (this is a non-negotiable)
    • 29er (duh, that's not negotiable either!)
    • 1xWHATEVER DRIVETRAIN—I had upgraded my old bike to the infamous Sram NX Eagle 1x12 and was loving it...but I'd probably be just as happy with a 1x10 or 1x11, as long as it has a big climbing cog.
    • DROPPER POST (OPTIONAL) - I didn't have one on my old bike and rode just fine without one, but everyone is telling me I **MUST** have one, so...

    • RIDING STYLE: XC - I'm 57 years old and ride for fun. At my age I'm also super-averse to risk (because injury recovery time is, like, a year). So my riding is 90% advanced-level riding on intermediate-level trails. I don't do downhill, I don't do trials-style boulder-hopping, and I don't race. I've been riding for 15 years so am very experienced. So I don't need a bike for Hyper-Aggro riding. But I *do* want a solid bike that will last at least 3-5 years of mostly weekend riding in snow-free months.

    Though I'm excited at the prospect of a new (to me) bike, I'm kinda dreading the inevitable hours and hours of pouring over reviews, studying specs, searching for bikes in various places, taking bikes for test rides, etc. - otherwise known as ANALYSIS PARALYSIS.

    So make it easy for me! :-D

    Scott
    29er wheels are dangerous. They may cause you to go faster which can result in serious bodily injury. —Jim311

  2. #2
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    I think you would actually prefer a short travel trail bike over an XC bike. Put some xc tires on it if punctures are not a concern. Have a look at the canyon neuron for a good value bike. Giant also has great deals on good trail bikes.

  3. #3
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    Scott im from Auburn, if I see it on the trails, ill contact you here.

  4. #4
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    On behalf of the sac metro area, sorry about that.

  5. #5
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    Giant Trance 29. Fits the bill of what you are looking for. Can't beat it for the price.

  6. #6
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    Thanks all. I'm pretty sure my old bike wasn't stolen by an MTBer. Our offices are on Garden Highway by the river—so piles of homeless folks around, many of whom ride bikes. (Could have been one of them but who knows?)

    As for a "trail bike" versus an XC bike, I'm not even sure I know what a "trail bike" is? LOL (Is it the same as an "all-mountain" bike?) A great advantage of riding the same bike for a decade is not having to even think about all the designations, categories, etc. :-)

    I did really like the less-slack geometry of my old GF; I rode it for so long that handling it was totally instinctive and beyond dialed-in. My one recent experience on a modern bike with slacker geometry felt weird (I felt more stretched out), but I know every change takes getting used to.

    Scott
    29er wheels are dangerous. They may cause you to go faster which can result in serious bodily injury. —Jim311

  7. #7
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    The lines are now blurred regarding XC, Trail, etc. but a 120-130ish travel bike is a general do-it-all XC/trail bike that can still handle some more aggressive riding if wanted yet still climb nearly as well as a designated XC rig.

    As far as geometry goes, yes, the new slacker angles can feel a bit odd at first, but I assure you after a few rides you'll see the light and love the control and forgiveness that they provide. After a summer on my new geo bike then getting on an older, steeper rig, the older bikes feel downright sketchy to me now.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Xlr8n View Post
    Giant Trance 29. Fits the bill of what you are looking for. Can't beat it for the price.
    I'm gonna second Xlr8n. A Giant Trance 29 would likely do you very well.

    A Giant Anthem 29 would give you steeper angles, geometry closer what you may be used to, but you'd get used to the new geometry, and would likely prefer the Trance in time.
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  9. #9
    WillWorkForTrail
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jwiffle View Post
    I'm gonna second Xlr8n. A Giant Trance 29 would likely do you very well.

    A Giant Anthem 29 would give you steeper angles, geometry closer what you may be used to, but you'd get used to the new geometry, and would likely prefer the Trance in time.
    And I'll third this, and try to help out a little. My last new bike prior to a Trance 29 was an Anthem 29 bought the same year Giant made the Trance X 29 - a 2013 model, my first new bike in 13 years at that point. But I'd always been an XC rider. So I wanted an XC bike, right? Turns out, a nice short travel trail bike might actually be a lot nicer. After a couple of years, I arrived that the conclusion that the difference between and XC bike and a trail bike is that XC bikes are really for people who want a light, pointy race machine. The rest of the world will have more fun on a trail bike, which can still be light, but maybe not as pointy - it's more stable. Where lines really start to blur is all mountain vs enduro now. But you don't need a bike that big (150-160mm travel). Part of the reason the trance 29 is so perfect is it's short rear travel. It would almost make you believe you could race it XC if you wanted. But the key is, you said you don't want to.

    So I'll tell you what I tell everyone. Demo some stuff. But I would argue the Trance 29 is a really good fit for you. Guys like you and I, we keep one bike so long we tend to feel like that's all we'll ever need. And yeah, I've still got my single speed. But I've discovered the shopping and demo process is actually so fun and informative that it's now something I do constantly - that is, demo bikes like I am shopping for a new bike. But I'm not. I haven't demod a bike I like more than the Trance anyway.

  10. #10
    Ovaries on the Outside
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    I'm not the guy that can really comment about FS bikes, but given the trails you will be riding in Oakridge, I think modern geo is is going to really feel great white knuckling down Tire Mountain.

  11. #11
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    How tall are you? I have one last Devinci Django on closeout for $3200 in size medium. 2019 GX build.

  12. #12
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    Firstly, sorry for your loss. I'm not 'credentialized' to speak to your next bike choice, but anecdotaly, I can comment on the by now nauseating to you statement about gotta-have new tech like dropper posts. I finally broke down and got a couple for my two FS bikes, (fossils), and they really are worth the dough for me after about one year of riding them. With my balance being steadily eroded every year by a CNS condition, the droppers have most certainly kept me from crashing, in all directions, a LOT. Get you one.

  13. #13
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    The Trance and Neuron seem like great options. Other ones might be the Orbea Oiz or Marin Rift Zone (which is a bit more of a trail bike, but a great bike for the price).

    You also could look for a last gen Santa Cruz Tallboy. The geometry is probably more in your sweet spot than the current gen and I suspect that places will have the old model on sale. Might take a bit of effort, but it's a bike that would fit your characteristics well.

    Edit: With a quick search it seems like the aluminum D model is within your price range and the R spec is just above it. I'd call some shops and see if you can get the R spec for what you're willing to pay if you're interested in going the Tallboy route.

  14. #14
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    I was in same spot of picking a new bike a few months ago, I used to race/ride in Southern Or and Central Or but due to back injury and raising a kid solo, I had not ridden in 12+ years. Needless to say, my old bike belongs in a museum. It is a Breezer Tornado with xtr everything so I was not used to riding low end bikes. I searched for a few months, got a Trek Marlin 6 for my 9 year old daughter and figured at 55 it was time to get off my ass.
    I will probably get chased off MTBR for this but I ended up getting a Motobecane LTD Team for $2400. I heard all kinds of negative crap etc but did it anyway. What I expected was that I would have to ditch the horrible frame and get something better but at least it woulod get me back in the saddle on the long road to getting back in shape/recovery without spending $4-5K just to find out I cant ride. I am very happy with my decision as I got great components like 2020 PIKE Debonair,Monarch TC3 shock, Eagle 01x Groupo, DT Swiss Wheels, great tires!!, Shimano XT 180 Disks, Dropper post etc. The bars and stem are reasonable but plan on a riser carbon soon. Put a set of Expedo Magnesium pedals for $50, removed the tubes and it has done nothing but surprise me.
    I checked the geometry and its right there with most $5k bikes, it handles great both up hill and down, corners like a roller coaster and weights less than 29#.
    The frame is made by same guys as Kona, Trek, Santa Cruz and Diamondback in Tiawan, not China like the Trek Marlin. Even if you buy a "good" frame from Ibis or another boutique brand on sale it will be $1000-$1500 cheaper. So far my plans of replacment are done, I did pick up a set of 29" boost DT wheels for $299 so I can switch for different seasons/conditions. This is just my $.02 to a fellow Oregonian who rides same trails with same age skeleton and a smile on my face.

  15. #15
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    Hi All—just a quick update: after riding one at the local Giant dealer, I'm sold on the Giant Trance 29. I think it'll be a great replacement for my old Gary Fisher HiFi Pro. I've already put a downpayment on one to hold it until the insurance payment goes through (any day now). the particular Trance I'm getting is the Trance 29 2 (with the SRAM NX Eagle groupset and Fox fork). Can't wait to start riding it!

    As an aside for anyone interested in how the insurance panned out on this:

    • In 2009, I paid $2700+ for the Gary Fisher HiFi Pro (that was at a bit of a discount and not counting tax).

    • With tax, the original purchase was around $2900.

    • Over the years, I put another $500 worth of upgrades into the bike (new rotors, new brakes, new drivetrain). I had receipts for the drivetrain replacement ($370) but had lost the other receipts. They gave me a little credit anyway for the other upgrades.

    • I have renters insurance through Geico (Assurant).

    • The insurance company calculated the cost of replacement at $3250.

    • I have a $500 deductible, so take that off the top.

    • then the insurance company calculated depreciation (10 years) at $1700. I was kinda bummed it was this high...but the fortunate thing is that this was *recoverable* depreciation.

    •*So my final insurance payout was about $1050.

    • The good news is that because the depreciation was classified as recoverable, after I buy the new Trance ($2800), I can submit the receipt to the insurance company and they will reimburse me for the $1700 depreciation.

    So in the end, I (more or less) break even! :-)

    Scott
    29er wheels are dangerous. They may cause you to go faster which can result in serious bodily injury. —Jim311

  16. #16
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    Wow, great insurance deal, that bike wasn’t really worth that much, so you’re making out like a bandit!

    Enjoy the new bike 👍
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  17. #17
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    Is this the same Scott that took a KLR650 to Nova Scotia and beyond? (Pretty sure it is you...) That portrayal and story of those lost fishing villages was something I never quite forgot, and has always inspired me to try to ride up to that area.

    Thank you!

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Speireag View Post
    Is this the same Scott that took a KLR650 to Nova Scotia and beyond? (Pretty sure it is you...) That portrayal and story of those lost fishing villages was something I never quite forgot, and has always inspired me to try to ride up to that area.

    Thank you!
    Yes—that's me! Ha, you must have been an STN member. :-) Can't believe someone remembers that trip—it was definitely one of the best trips I've ever taken. I've been wanting to do something like that again ever since...but life hasn't allowed me to take a month off (free from all obligations). Maybe when I'm retired, LOL.

    Scott
    29er wheels are dangerous. They may cause you to go faster which can result in serious bodily injury. —Jim311

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