Need advice, almost ready to get my first ride- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Need advice, almost ready to get my first ride

    TL;DR:

    If a 2014 Marin Bobcat Trail 29er comes to a grand total of ~$920 and a 2013 between ~$700-750 is it still worth getting the 2014? I'm guessing no, but just needed a 3rd party opinion before I went ahead with a purchase.

    Caveat:

    I'm open to considering other models if it meets the requirements below. I would like to get started riding soon, and the 2013 Marin seems like the best choice at this point. I know REI is doing their big sale now, so if there's a good deal here, let me know.

    I looked at the Airborne Guardian 2 and seeker. They're nice, but since this is my first bike I definitely wanted to test ride before buying.

    Details:

    -Looking for my first real MTB, been researching extensively and testing everything I can ride. A Medium frame 29er or a large 27.5" seems like the most ideal fits so far.

    - Budget is sub-$1000, ideally ~$700, but exceptions can be made for good deals.

    - Use: Get outside, get in better shape. I'm interested in Orange County bike paths and trails to start. Not expecting to use this on very "technical" stuff.

    - Me: Male, 165 lb, 5'10", 31" in-seam.

    - What I've test ridden:

    1) Trek X-cal 5 (Felt "ok" to ride, but I didn't feel confident in the brakes.)

    2) Trek 820 (didn't like the 26" wheels vs. 29er X-cal 5. Also not fond of these brakes either.)

    3) Novara Ponderosa 29er Medium Frame (Decent, but it felt less "refined" IMO vs. the Marin/Scott below.)

    4) Scott Scale 770 27.5" Large Frame (Really nice ride, but $1100+. Definitely liked the look & feel.)

    5) Marin Bobcat Trail 29er 2014 Large Frame (19"?) (Nice ride, but wrong size frame.)

    I tested #3-5 at REI. Sadly they didn't have the 2014 Medium Marin Bobcat Trail built, so I tested out a 2014 Large frame Marin. Standing over it was a literal stretch, though riding it around felt pretty good... sizing issues aside. I tried the Novara at the store's suggestion. They said the Medium Novara would have similar feel as a Medium Marin. The medium + 29er size was much better than the Large Marin.

    Thanks for your help!

  2. #2
    Fat-tired Roadie
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    Usually, the new model years just get Bold New Graphics.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  3. #3
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    Just ride until you find one that feels right. The bike i bought wasn't the highest spec'ed one i rode but it did feel the best. If the most expensive one feels good save a little longer and be happy. or ride more in your budget range until one feels right.

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