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  1. #1
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    <$500 HT bike, which one?

    Hi guys,

    This is my first post here, so please bare with. I have used a cheap walmart FS bike, and now I live on campus, so I would like to reward myself with a better bike.

    I am 6'7", weight about 150lbs, so I think 17.5" to 19" wheel size would be a good place to start with. I have heard of Trek, Giant and brands, but I am not sure what model would be a good pick. Budget is $500 max, and I don't think I can get a 2nd hand locally.

    Any suggestions?

    Thanks,
    Peter

  2. #2
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    Welcome to the Forums, Peter!

    Thanks for posting up your question. Giant and Trek both make very good bikes. I've personally owned two Giant bicycles in my lifetime. Given your budget, I'd say you should look at hardtail bikes, specifically the Giant Yukon and the Trek 4300 disc. Both are pretty nice entry level hardtail bikes. If you're looking to buy from your Local Bike Shop (LBS) there are many bikes to choose from in this range and will pretty much be similar in quality and component selection. Check out a few shops, take a couple of bikes out for test rides and see for yourself.

    I would also check and see if they have any 2005 or 2006 leftovers in your size. Pickin's will be slim, but it's worth a try as they will be discounted. 2007 models probably won't. Buying from your LBS will hopefully give uyou the Peace of mind in knowing that any warranty repairs and minor adjustments will be taken care of by the people who sold you the bike. keep in mind some shops have better customer service than others. Talk to the manager of the shops you check out and ask about costs for warranty repairs and tune-ups. They will vary from shop to shop.

    Buying a bike online through a variety of sources (ebay, liquidators, discounters, direct from manufacturer) are also possibilities. Keep in mind that you will not be able to test ride the bike, and warranty issues and adjustments are handled in a variety of different ways that may or may not be convenient. If you're handy mechanically, and are willing to spend some money on tools and repair books, this might work for you. Buying this way typically gets you more bike for your money, but may come at the cost of the "peace of mind" so many people seek in buying from the LBS. I've purchased 4 bikes online and have had excellent experiences personally. If you want recommendations for this type of purchase, I'll be happy to provide some.

    In any event, hopefully I'm giving you some information to think about. Whatever you do, don't rush into the purchase. Do some research. Hang out here in the forums. Read the reviews section here. Read the threads in the manufacturers forums here. It will all seem like Greek at first, but soon enough you'll catch on.

    Bob
    'If Wal-Mart sold parachutes, who would jump?' Frank Havnoonian (quoting his father) Drexel Hill Cyclery

  3. #3
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    I'd suggest looking at Ibex. plenty of bang for your buck.

    maybe Ibex Alpine550 http://www.ibexbikes.com/Bikes/ALP-550-Details.html
    with shipping about $535

    I have a 2005 alpine 550 and have no complaints.

    otherwise, I'd suggest the alpine 450 (435 shipped), but it looks like they only have the smaller sizes in stock right now

  4. #4
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    Thanks for everyone's reply.

    I am in school in Long Island, so there is only one LBS around. If things comes along, I can definitely go to the NYC to buy if the price is right.

    What is the typical price for the Yukon and the 4300 Disc? I would like to have a base line to go from.

    Is it possible to find a lighter bike? Because I am going to lift it back to my dorm everyday, seeing how many bike thieves there are in my school.

    Peter

  5. #5
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    like grnxb suggested. Check out the Ibex bikes... definitely one of the best bang for buck around. And the bikes are awesome...

  6. #6
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    Hi Peter,

    I spent about 430 for my 06 Yukon. It's a good bike. I ride mostly fire roads and singletrack with it, and have been very happy with it. I reccomend going the LBS route vs the internet for your first ride. They'll help you with sizing, maintanence questions, and warranty work. This is just my opinion though

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Kid 5
    Hi Peter,
    I spent about 430 for my 06 Yukon. It's a good bike. I ride mostly fire roads and singletrack with it, and have been very happy with it. I reccomend going the LBS route vs the internet for your first ride. They'll help you with sizing, maintanence questions, and warranty work. This is just my opinion though
    I agree with "The Kid" on the LBS thing mainly because of your height..
    You damn sure dont want to feel cramped on your new bike..
    As for size of bike, I'd be looking at a 21" or more

    A light bike? IMO, its not gonna happen for $500..
    Besides, whats 28-30 pounds up and down the stairs a few times every day> Good exersise

    Best of luck and welcome to the Forums..

    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>Jake

  8. #8
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    i just picked up the Specialized Hardrock Disk for 499 at the LBS, and i love it. It seems perfect for a begginer like myself, and it has gotten good reviews on the website.

  9. #9
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    I think this is higher quality for the money

    I started out looking at the Hardrock, but after shopping all day I found a much better bike. I got a Motobecane 700HT for $450. I bought mine in a store but I found out now you can also get it online at www.bikesdirect.com

    The Motobecane is nicer than the Trek, Giant or Ibex that is mentioned here too. Only the Motobecane out of all those mentioned is not made in China. Check it out and you will find the same as I did.

    All brands make nice upper end bikes in Taiwan; but Motobecane is the only one you see where even the lower level ones are made in Taiwan. Other brands have the bikes at your price level made in China to save money.

    I looked at welds on about 100 bikes in shops and there was a clear pattern, bikes from Taiwan have nicer welds than those from China as a pattern.

    Plus the Motobecane had better specs than any other bike I could find under $500. It has 100mm travel Rock Shox fork, nicer lever Tektro disc brakes, Shimano Deore & XT.

    I have ridden it a lot since the weather improved and I do not think you can get a better bike for the money.
    Last edited by deepetexas; 02-11-2007 at 04:46 AM.

  10. #10
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    Thanks guys,

    I have encounter the model Giant Iguana Disc, and it is a hydraulic disc brake. What's a reasonable price for the Iguana Disc?

    How much is it better than the Yukon's mechanical disc brake? What brake does the Trek 4300 has? While the Trek got 8mm of traveling from the fork, the Yukon got 100mm, what's the difference here?

    Does anyone have a recommended bike shop in the NYC area, with reasonable average pricing?

    Thanks for your answers, much appreciation from this noob.

    Thanks,
    Peter

  11. #11
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    For INFO on LBS in NYC post in the (click>) NEW YORK board for the possibility of faster results

    Jake...

  12. #12
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    I bought the Forge Sawback 5xx for $299.00, I'm really impressed with the quality and specs. You can get an additional 10% off if you google "target.com coupons", I learned that through this site. And you can always return at a taget store (trust me, not your typical mass store bike) or via UPS, also we get coupons from target for other purchases. Otherwise, I would echo Clyde, I have owned a Giant and was very pleased with both the dealer as well as the bike. Any decision is a good one. Best of Luck!
    Last edited by bikefun; 02-12-2007 at 06:51 PM.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikefun
    I bought the Forge Sawback 5xx for $299.00, I'm really impressed with the quality and specs. You can also get an additional 10% off if you google "target.com coupons", I learned that through this site. What I particularly liked about purchasing through taget is that you can easily return to any store (trust me, not your typical mass store bike), also we get coupons from target for other purchases. Otherwise, I would echo Clyde, I have owned a Giant and was very pleased with both the dealer as well as the bike. Any decision is a good one. Best of Luck!
    Yea I saw this deal too. I also read somewhere it's identical to the Iron Horse Warrior Comp and the frame is made by Giant. The parts alone could be worth more than the bike. This bike looks like a great deal.

  14. #14
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    Forge Sawback won't be nearly big enough for you at 6'7". Largest size it comes in is 19" you will need a 23, maybe even a 25" (seat tube length, not wheel size--though I assume you made a mistake in your original post in referencing "wheel size" of 17.5 or 19--but either of those sizes would be waaaayyyy too small for you.). MSRP on the Yukon is $470, well below $500. If that Iguana is at least a size 23, and under $500, go for it, that's a pretty good deal. The hydro brakes are stronger, and the rest of the component spec is nicer as well - forks, drivetrain, etc. But something your size is key. At 6'7", you need a top tube length of at least close to, if not greater than, 25", so a size 23 to 25 bike. (and you must be one skinny person, because I'm only 6'1" and 155 and I'm quite thin myself)

  15. #15
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    At 6 '7 and 150 pounds that must be a typo, or else I would recommend drinking some milk or else your going to break some bones easily.

    I'm 5'9 and 130, you are approx 10 inches taller than me and I'm considered flyweight.

    6'7 is HUGE...

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by taikuodo
    At 6 '7 and 150 pounds that must be a typo, or else I would recommend drinking some milk or else your going to break some bones easily.

    I'm 5'9 and 130, you are approx 10 inches taller than me and I'm considered flyweight.

    6'7 is HUGE...
    Opps, didn't even notice the typo until you name it. I am only 5' 7 instead.

    Sorry guys, can't stop imagining myself touching the rim of the basketball board.

    Peter

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by peterpan188
    Opps, didn't even notice the typo until you name it. I am only 5' 7 instead.
    Sorry guys, can't stop imagining myself touching the rim of the basketball board. Peter



  18. #18
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    Stand with your back against a wall and a binder or something similar squeezed between your legs, up against your groin. Measure from the floor to the top of the binder. This is your Stand-Over height. If this is less than 30" then a 17" frame should fit you well. If it is 30" a 19" frame will fit and if it's 31" then maybe a 21" would be about the upper limit.

    I'm 5'10" with a 30.5" stand-over, currently riding a 17.5" frame with the seat post at minimum insertion hieght (as high as it can go). I still can't get my legs to straighten out when at the bottom of a pedal-stroke. This frame is too small for me and I am looking at buying a bigger bike. Your legs should be able to go straight at the bottom of your pedal-stroke so you get the most power out of your down-strokes and so your muscles can stretch.

    Get to a LBS and test bikes of different sizes. Hop on and find some way to hold yourself upright and stable with your arms (I use a door-way), then pedal backwards and see where your legs end up. Play with seat adjustment and different size frames. I've met some people that like to ride frames a little bit too small for them, with an extra-tall seat-post. (I may go this route in the end if I can't find a larger bike in my price range.) Their reasoning is simple and direct: if they have to stop and stand up straddling the bike, they want some extra room between the boys and the bar! This really comes into play when you have to straddle the bike on a side-hill with one leg lower than the other- if you lean down-hill you may sing saprano or fall over (or both).

    Don't forget to check the local Craigslist. I got a great deal on my bike this way- too good to pass up despite being small. It got me started in mountain biking at a terrific price.

  19. #19
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    RiskEverything, I think thats a dangerous way to be getting your frame size. I have a 32minus2 for a binder, so 30, 5'9 and a 17 inch Kona was pretty much a perfect fit for me and I am not riding a 19 inch frame lol. I could not imagine riding a 19 inch.

    At 5'7. stay at 16-17 inch frames for sure.

    It depends mostly on the frame geometry.

  20. #20
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    It was a method I found on a website about bike fitment. Regarding frame size: I'd say the most important thing is being able to straighten your legs out on the downstroke while still being able to stand up while straddling the bike. I can't straighten my legs out on my 17.5" IH Warrior Comp, so this frame size is too small for me. I sure hope 19" is better because I'm bidding on a 19" Cannondale F800 Lefty on EBay right now....

  21. #21
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    Check out the Woodstock 707. I just got it and its a pretty sweet ride. Customer service was pretty good too!

  22. #22
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    I have to second the Giant Yukon, its been a solid depenable bike for me. I have abused my 06 for roughly 1.5 yrs now and love it

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jake Pay
    I agree with "The Kid" on the LBS thing mainly because of your height..
    I'm going to have to agree with the LBS suggestion here too, even though the height typo has been straightened out already. So, nope, it's not that... and, yep, my company sells bikes over the Internet. I do recognize, however, that buying a bike online is not for everyone, and it's clear from some of the OP's comments (17.5" or 19" wheels?) that he's a total newbie to bikes. I also get the feeling from the wording in some of his posts that English is not his first language. Nothing wrong with either of those things, but I do think he is really going to need the LBS more than most.

    Therefore, in this case I would suggest not buying online or buying used or going into "the NYC" to get a bike. Peter, take some good advice here. Go to that one LBS near you and pick out a bike from whatever brands they sell. Most every bike shop is going to carry at least one mainstream brand with a decent $500 bike in the line-up. Yes, you might pay less buying direct from the factory, as is the case with my brand... and, yes, your selection may be limited only to that bike shop's brands... but, for your situation it will be well worth the extra dollars to get your bike where you can get face-to-face help both selecting and maintaining your new bike. I'm not trying to offend you. We were all newbies once upon a time. Even as newbies some folks pick up on all the details involved right away and some folks really need to have an LBS. If I'm wrong, then you have my apologies. If I'm right, you will thank me sometime down the road when it all starts to sink in.

    Jack A.
    IBEX Bicycles
    Last edited by ibexbikes; 02-19-2007 at 10:06 AM.
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  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by peterpan188
    Opps, didn't even notice the typo until you name it. I am only 5' 7 instead.

    Sorry guys, can't stop imagining myself touching the rim of the basketball board.

    Peter
    aahh...well, that changes things a bit. Don't get a 25 inch bike! a 17-18 inch frame bike will probably fit you best. But check out what your LBS has, and they will help size you up on the best size bike.

  25. #25
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    Heh, somebody 5' 7" trying to get on a 25" frame bike...

    :]


    To make my post just a little bit helpful:

    Yeah, just go to your LBS and look for a good 17"-18" bike.

  26. #26
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    Back with some experience

    Hey guys,

    I just went to a LBS this weekend and asked about the bikes you guys suggested. The stuff recommended a 17in frame for my size. They showed me a 4300 disc, a 7.3FX (it's a hybrid, right?), Rockhopper and a Hardrock. They are all very nice bike, but I was overwhelmed by the selections.They fall in different price range, and some of them exceeded my budget quite a bit ($600-$700). I can save up a little more and get it, but I need your opinion on this.

    The Rockhoppoer got different configurations, Basic, Disc, Comp, Comp disc and Pro Disc. They took me that for the price ($~1000) the Pro Disc is a steal, becuase of the new M7 frame, but I don't think I am ready to spend that money on a bike yet. So would it b better to start with a Basic or Disc and upgrade some of the components? If so, how should I start with that? I would like to keep the price under $700 if possible.

    Thanks,
    Peter

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by ibexbikes
    I'm going to have to agree with the LBS suggestion here too, even though the height typo has been straightened out already. So, nope, it's not that... and, yep, my company sells bikes over the Internet. I do recognize, however, that buying a bike online is not for everyone, and it's clear from some of the OP's comments (17.5" or 19" wheels?) that he's a total newbie to bikes. I also get the feeling from the wording in some of his posts that English is not his first language. Nothing wrong with either of those things, but I do think he is really going to need the LBS more than most.

    Therefore, in this case I would suggest not buying online or buying used or going into "the NYC" to get a bike. Peter, take some good advice here. Go to that one LBS near you and pick out a bike from whatever brands they sell. Most every bike shop is going to carry at least one mainstream brand with a decent $500 bike in the line-up. Yes, you might pay less buying direct from the factory, as is the case with my brand... and, yes, your selection maybe limited only to that bike shop's brands... but, for your situation it will be well worth the extra dollars to get your bike where you can get face-to-face help both selecting and maintaining your new bike. I'm not trying to offend you. We were all newbies once upon a time. Even as newbies some folks pick up on all the details involved right away and some folks really need to have an LBS. If I'm wrong, then you have my apologies. If I'm right, you will thank me sometime down the road when it all starts to sink in.

    Jack A.
    IBEX Bicycles
    Jack, you've earned my respect with that recommendation. I was going to say the same thing myself, but it has much more weight coming from you.
    Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might.... (Ecclesiastes 9:10)

  28. #28
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    Hi 2008 700HT

    I'm getting ready to buy a new HT.

    Look at thsi Motebecane 700HT 2008 model availble now What do you think?

    Frame 7005 Aluminum Trail-Tuned POWER STAY with replaceable rear derailleur hanger, 2x H2O bosses
    Fork RockShox DART 2 adjustable
    Crankset TruVativ 5D Aluminum Triple 22/32/42T 175mm
    Bottom Bracket Sealed Cartridge
    Pedals ATB Beartrap
    Front Derailleur Shimano Deore Mega 9
    Rear Derailleur Shimano Deore XT Long Cage
    Shifters Shimano Deore Mega 9 Speed STI Triggershift Pods (27 speeds total)
    Cassette/Freewheel Cassette 11-32T 9 Speed Hyperglide
    Chain 9 Speed Z9000 Super Narrow
    Hubs M-Wing DiscSpecific Aluminum (black)
    Spokes Stainless Steel
    Rims WEINMANN SP-17 - Double Wall Aluminum CNC sidewalls
    Tires WTB Velociraptor Blackwall 26 x 2.10
    Brakes TEKTRO AQUILA Mechanical Disc Brakes
    Brake Levers Tektro for Disc
    Headset Tioga Alchemy Ahead Threadless Sealed 1.125 inch
    Handlebar M-Wing Comp Aluminum Riser
    Stem M-Wing Comp Threadless Aluminum 1.125 inch
    Tape/Grip WTB Black Palm Pillow
    Saddle WTB Speed V with comfort groove
    Seat Post M-Wing Aluminum Micro-Adjust
    eat Clamp Alloy w/QR
    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...964&indexURL=0
    &photoDisplayType=2#ebayphotohosting

  29. #29
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    You mentioned a Trek, check out the Trek 6000 series. It's a looker and since your not a clyde, the fork would be pretty good for xc.

    http://www2.trekbikes.com/bikes/bike...d=1032600&f=18

  30. #30
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    OK- I take it back about being able to get your legs perfectly straight. Apparently there is supposed to be a small angle to them, around 15 degrees or so.

    Iron Horse seems to have great componentry for the money

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