Expert thoughts Specialized Hardtail?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Expert thoughts Specialized Hardtail?

    I posted in the beginners thread I am trying to get into the sport on a budget, but don't want to waste money on a cheap bike...

    I found a Specialized Hardrock in great shape, not sure of the year. For $250 bucks, is this frame worth the purchase to slowly build on?

    Considering I was about to drop $600 on a Cannondale F7, does this bike compare?

  2. #2
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    for HTs comparison...

    the frames will be very similar. that leaves the fork as the next item to evaluate. I don't know what's on the Spec bike; the Cdale 2009 has an RST Gila, entry level & not very good, but you can do some sleuthing and figure out which is best.

    But 1st, the frame has to fit you well, regardless of choice of any bike. If the fork is important to you, upgrade it at time of purchase for the best bang for your buck.

    Jim

  3. #3
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    I bought a 2007 hardrock pro disk for $175 on craigslist for a cheap bike to have around for people to borrow, for the money its great.

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    Thanks, I also found a Giant Iguana if anybody has an opinion.

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    Ummmmm

    what year? Kinda like saying I found a Chevy, is it a good deal?

    jc

  6. #6
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    Good point, I am learning as I go here. I assumed they would not make the same model for many years.... I was wrong! I emailed the dude and he said about 3 years old and of course is in "excellent condition"

    Thanks

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    To specify, the Iguana is 3 years old. Jury is out on the Specialized and its a long drive to look at it.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by TravDK
    I found a Specialized Hardrock in great shape, not sure of the year. For $250 bucks, is this frame worth the purchase to slowly build on?
    If your planning on a project you would be better served with a different frame. If you like the spec stuff think stumpy or the latter model rockhoppers. If your leaning towards giant I think you would be better served by an XTC in good shape that has a few more years on it.

    Hardrock, as a project, IMHO is not worth it.

  9. #9
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    and your honest opinion is appreciated, thanks. This is a headache finding the right bike. Geeze. Part of me wants to just bite the bullet and get out there, the other side looking for the perfect fit.

  10. #10
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    The Hardrock isn't a bad frame to build on. It's got typical XC geo (70* HA, 73* SA) and the older ones were plenty burly (they changed the design for 08). A little porky at 4.6lbs for a Large (with headset and seatpost collar), but that isn't too bad.

    I bout a HR to start on and upgraded bit by bit. I had it in the low 27s with a fairly high zoot build (X.9, AM Havocs, Fox F100).

    For the money, you can't go wrong...
    Axle Standards Explained

    Founder at North Atlantic Dirt, riding & writing about trails in the northeast.

  11. #11
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    I didn't say it was bad, just not a great place to start a project. If your goal is to create something better than you have, or what your looking for in this case, you would be better to start with a higher quality frame - as a project this is going to cost big bucks, spend a few more up front for a good frame/patform to do it right.

    Whats better about nicer frames you ask? The tubing, welds, and geometry for starters.

    To the OP keep your eyes open for incomplete projects. A few seasons ago I helped a friend find a stumpy HT for $150 that need a crank, brakes, and a chain; its a sweet light bike with great geo. Also, do you absolutely have to have disc brakes? If not take a look at frames w/o that capability (huge drop in price). IMHO your served better by a quality frame than uber cheap disc brakes. You can also get high quality rim brakes & wheels for virtually nothing.

    You may also want to look at Treks, Rocky Mountain, Kona, etc... If the vendor is listed here its prob pretty good.

    Also, where do you live? Have you checked in with your local advocacy group? I live in MA, and the NEMBA forum typically has something interesting floating around. You can search, ask, or throw a WTB type question.

  12. #12
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    Redirection

    The bikes you are looking are are entry level machines. Think of this bike as one to learn on. It is not a platform to develop but to use and support as parts are needed for repair. Upgrades at this level of riding are usually a function of enthusiasm and there are better places to put this energy.

    Build your riding skills and you quiver of clothing and support gear. Learn. Your next bike in a year or two will be so much easier to choose because you will know so much more. You will also have more money to spend because you didn't waste it on upgrades that do very little to enrich your riding experience.

  13. #13
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    Even 'hardrock' doesn't tell us much about the bike, as specialized made a bunch of different variants on the hardrock frame. Components matter. "Building up" an entry level (which means the complete hardtail bike was under ~1000$) is never a good way to go. Get one, ride the hell out of it, sell, get something that suits the direction you're taking in mtb.

    Don't get hung up trying to get a more performance oriented frame, like the stumpjumper hardtail or XTC, the beginner bikes are more fun for mobbing through the forest.

    My take is that it's easy for a beginner to get a bad deal/get a bike that doesn't fit/inherit someone elses problems/get the wrong style bike when shopping craigslist. There's deals to be had, but not nearly as many as one would think.

    Shopping beginner bikes.... 8/9 speed doesnt matter, drivetrain components don't matter much, fit is really important, double wall wheels that have been checked by a good tech are really important, and a hydraulicly damped fork makes a huge difference. I'd opt to avoid cheap disk brakes (eg- not hmx1 or bb7), but sometimes they're unavoidable.

    The trend is to design beginner bikes around <100mm stems. I would look for that. So much more confident pointed downhill = more fun.
    "Things that are complex are not useful, Things that are useful are simple."
    Mikhail Kalashnikov

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