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  1. #1
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    Bonking ... not feelin' well HELP!! Trek or Specialized????

    I am going to buy a new bike and can't decide between 2005 Trek 4500, 4900 or Specialized Hard Rock Pro Disk. I have about $600 to spend. I want a bike with disc brakes and front suspension. I am 6.2 and about 225 pounds, very athletic and plan to stay at that weight and like to ride trails. I use to ride BMX and Freestyle when when I was younger for a good 10yrs and would like to get back into the dirt, etc. I broke and bent a few frames in my day but the technology is a lot different now and I haven't kept up. Which one comes with better components, brakes, fork, etc, durability?? I know I will upgrade different things later but which one would be a better starting point as far as frame, etc..?? I am getting a great deal at Village Cycle Center in Chicago. 2005 Trek 4500 disc for $500+ tax and the Hard Rock fro slightly more. I am at the same time buying my girlfriend a bike and probably get a better deal.

    Feel free to suggest any other bikes. Any input is greatly appreciated.
    Last edited by BIGONTS; 12-14-2004 at 01:59 PM.

  2. #2
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    Trek 8000

    I have had a Trek 8000 LT for several years without any trouble. It weighs in at about 24.6 lbs, so it is good for XC and climbing those hills. The Hayes hydraulics are fantastic and trouble free. I haven't had any major issues with this bike. Cost me $900.

  3. #3
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    Good Question...

    Say BIGONTS, have you test ridden any of these bikes, just to get a feel for which one you like? As a bigger guy, you need a tougher frame, what can the LBS guys tell you about the frames? I would say go with the one that feels best. If they both feel great, go with the one with the toughest frame. If the frames are equally tough, go with the best component group.

    Congrats on getting a new bike by the way...
    If you're ever in Calgary, here are the bike shops I like:
    Single Track Cycle
    The Bike Shop
    Calgary Cycle

  4. #4
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    Both bikes will have about equal components and they are both from good manufactures that stand behind their product. Ride each and see which fits and feels better to you. Bikes are like women (or men as it may be), when you find the right one you just know it. No pictures, comparing specs or reading reviews will tell you what you will like when you actually ride.
    Riding slowly since 1977.

  5. #5
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    Thanks for all the input. Anthing else? Other brands or models suggested?
    Last edited by BIGONTS; 12-16-2004 at 10:10 AM.

  6. #6
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    Any other suggestions or opinions?

  7. #7
    you cant handle bars.
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    specialized base rockhopper also retails for about 500 bucks, and has a manitou fork and a better component group, but you lose the discs. a more than fair trade if you ask me, base disc brakes are usually pretty dubious stopping power anyway. get the rockhopper.

  8. #8
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    I am now looking and considering getting the Haro 8.2. How does it compare against the 4500 and Hard Rock? I am getting an awesome deal at $399.00.

  9. #9
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    The 4900 is a 04 bike. The new 6500 has a manitou fork with a lock out and an SLR frame. I think its like 550 the disc model is a little more. The Judy TT on the 4500 is a piece of crap.

  10. #10
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    My wife has a Trek 4500 (04 model). It's a pretty decent beginner bike, but I think you will destroy it in no time at your weight if you ride hard. The frame is probably up to the job, but the components are not. She upgraded the fork on hers, which was a big improvement. As mentioned above the standard Judy TT is rubbish. For a big athletic guy like you I would be looking at something more substantial like a Kona Hoss.

  11. #11
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    Thanks. I will be picking up the Haro 8.2 later on today. I guess I will upgrade as things break.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by BIGONTS
    Thanks. I will be picking up the Haro 8.2 later on today. I guess I will upgrade as things break.
    I upgrade that way too. Let us know how she rides.
    If you're ever in Calgary, here are the bike shops I like:
    Single Track Cycle
    The Bike Shop
    Calgary Cycle

  13. #13
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    I was wondering if you saw the post I put up a few days ago about the $399 Haro 8.2 at Richard's bike shop just outside Chicago. For a big guy like you, I don't think you can find a better deal on a new bike. If you were going to buy the Avid 160mm brakes by themselves, they would cost you a minimum of $120. Your getting the whole resr of the bike for $280. What a deal. Richiard's is the shiznit. I wanted to buy my next bike there, but I found a full polished Blur with a full XTR, crossmax SL and a float for $2175 on Ebay. Couldn't pass it up. They will be servicing my bike though. Great guys.

    Dan
    I'm as bad as the Worst. But, thank God, I'm also as good as the Best.

  14. #14
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    Trek 3900 or Specialized Hardrock

    i gotta keep this thread going.........the wife and i need to get off our asses and quit watching TV so we're buying bikes..........well, i'm buying them as a Xmas gift for us. she has wanted one for about a year now and today i bought 2 trek 3900's. is there a big difference between that and the hardrock?

    they were basically the same price and the guy said they were basically the same bike.
    is this true?

    thanks

  15. #15
    inner peace to make peace
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    Disks stop better when wet

    Disks stop better when wet
    getting disk hub wheels are a plus for later
    Trek or Specialized...both could be good that the test ride should decide it
    “Everyday is a good day,” from the Blue Cliff Records, Yun-men (864-949 AD).

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by RollTide
    i gotta keep this thread going.........the wife and i need to get off our asses and quit watching TV so we're buying bikes..........well, i'm buying them as a Xmas gift for us. she has wanted one for about a year now and today i bought 2 trek 3900's. is there a big difference between that and the hardrock?

    they were basically the same price and the guy said they were basically the same bike.
    is this true?

    thanks
    Based on what I see from the MFR's web sites, they spec out similarly, but the Trek web site didn't get as detailed on component selection as the Specialized web site. Both have their pros and cons, but if I had to choose I would go with the Hardrock. With that said, I don't think you made a bad choice.

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

  17. #17
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    Cool-blue Rhythm

    I just got he Haro 8.2 and I love it.
    Last edited by BIGONTS; 12-23-2004 at 07:45 AM.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bike-o-saurus
    I was wondering if you saw the post I put up a few days ago about the $399 Haro 8.2 at Richard's bike shop just outside Chicago.

    Dan
    Hey, thanks everyone for your input. Been very helpful. I got the Haro 8.2 a few days ago and wish I can ride it but it's freezing here in Chicago . Took it up and down the alley and if felt great. Richard's, that is where I got it. I live only a few minutes away and they are a very good shop. I will be there oftern buying stuff as it breaks. They had two left and my brother might be buying the other one. I couldn't pass that deal up. Waaaay more bike for the money than the 4500. I bought my girlfriend the Trek 4300 disc at Village Cycle a few days earlier so we are both going to be hitting the trails this summer. Village Cycle is also good and has a hudge inventory of new and old bikes that they will give you a hell of a deal on. The guy at Village who was helping us was really knowledgeable and he is the one that suggested I go and buy that Haro eventhough they don't sell them. He use to work for Haro and he said they are very good bikes and for the price I was getting it, I couldn't get a better deal. Especially if I was on a budget.

    I am really eager to ride it and if it hit's 50's here, I will be riding and I have a lot of good trails close to me.

    Have a great Holiday everyone
    Last edited by BIGONTS; 12-23-2004 at 07:47 AM.

  19. #19
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    thanks

    yeah from what i've read and the limited research that i've done they seem about equal. i was just wondering if there were any big differences between the two that would make me switch from the treks.

    thanks,

    also, by reading some of the forums on here i realize that 99% of the people have more expensive bikes.

  20. #20
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    Great!!

    Bigonts,

    Glad I could help you find a bike that was the best deal, and glad I could help out Richard's get rid of their old inventory. I was thinking about getting a Trek 1500 there, but just wasn't sure if I wanted a road bike. They were cheaper at that shop new than they were on Ebay. Hope you talked to Rich or Mike, they are the best-although everyone there rides and is very knowledgeable. Let me know when you want to go riding, I've been itching to go and live in Mt. Greenwood. I went last week when it was about 30 and snowing, so I'll go whenever you want to.

    I know basically all the trails in the Maple Lake/Bull Frog Lake area, so I can hopefully show you the best trails if you don't already know them. It would be nice to have someone to ride with, as I do 90% of my riding alone. I aso have two (soon to be three) 20-21 inch bikes in good riding shape, so if you know anyone else who wants to go, invite 'em along. I'm also about to get some studded tires to ride in the winter, I'm going stir crazy. Hope you enjoy the bikes, and happy holidays.

    Dan
    I'm as bad as the Worst. But, thank God, I'm also as good as the Best.

  21. #21
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    happy to find you

    Quote Originally Posted by Bike-o-saurus
    Bigonts,

    Glad I could help you find a bike that was the best deal, and glad I could help out Richard's get rid of their old inventory. I was thinking about getting a Trek 1500 there, but just wasn't sure if I wanted a road bike. They were cheaper at that shop new than they were on Ebay. Hope you talked to Rich or Mike, they are the best-although everyone there rides and is very knowledgeable. Let me know when you want to go riding, I've been itching to go and live in Mt. Greenwood. I went last week when it was about 30 and snowing, so I'll go whenever you want to.

    I know basically all the trails in the Maple Lake/Bull Frog Lake area, so I can hopefully show you the best trails if you don't already know them. It would be nice to have someone to ride with, as I do 90% of my riding alone. I aso have two (soon to be three) 20-21 inch bikes in good riding shape, so if you know anyone else who wants to go, invite 'em along. I'm also about to get some studded tires to ride in the winter, I'm going stir crazy. Hope you enjoy the bikes, and happy holidays.

    Dan

    this is exactly what i've been searching for. i'm looking to buy a mountain bike in the $400-500 range and could use much advice. i've never ridden serious mountain bike trails before - i grew up in new york w/ a road bike - but i just moved to santa cruz and figure that oughta change. i'm a reasonably strong rider, but am not gonna be doing 6' drops anytime soon. i want a bike that's light and sturdy, good at climbing (3' foot drops maybe). those are my main concerns, and that it be good enough that it'll be worth it to upgrade components when originals wear down, something i could eventually put disc brakes on perhaps. there's a great selection of bikes around here, so i have a lot of options. i know that you really have to ride a bike to know how it'll be for you, but was wondering if there's a conventional wisdom on a handful of the top notch models in that price range and for that purpose. also, might it make sense for me to pay a bit more money for the next level of bike? is there a particular great jump in quality involved there? and coming from riding road bikes and hybrids around nyc, am i gonna be more likely to be comfortable on a certain brand or model. currently i'm thinking about specialized rockhopper, gf tassajara, stuff like that. wow, that's a buncha questions. well, i'd really, very much appreciate any advice anybody could offer. thank you.

    dan

  22. #22
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    my size

    btw, i'm 5'10" 150 lbs. thanks again.

  23. #23
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    Check out the FAQ...

    You can do a search. Click on the link at the top of the MTBR discussion board and put in $500 and the word bike or new or all three. There is a whole FAQ and thread devoted to this very topic. I would seriously considering find a shop by you and trying out the Haro 8.2. If you like it, call Richard's and see if they have one in your size. If not, ask what 2004 models they have in your size. They have hella deals on year old bikes. I got a Carbon Fiber Trek there ten years ago that was two years old. It originally listed for over $2000 and I got it for $900. That Haro 8.2 listed for $949 and they sold it for $399. They were selling full suspension GTs (I think it was a 1.0) earlier this year for $750.
    Unfortunately anything in this price range in not going to be light. You'll be lucky to come away with a bike weighing less than 30 pounds. But, hey you can definately get something durable and that performs great. I hate to sound like a bike elitist, but at these price ranges, performance goes up dramatically and weight comes dowm dramatically as the price creeps up. If you are sure that you're going to bike and bike a lot, than I think you should look at how long you are going to keep the bike. If you look at a $500 bike, and think, I'll keep it five years, then a $700 bike will only cost you $40 more per year, or less than a dollar per week. The diff. between a $500 and $700 can be dramatic. Upgrading parts gets very expensive very fast. You're much better off spending more on the bike initially than trying to upgrade later. I bought my $1600 Cannondale five or six years ago and didn't upgrade one part because I got everything I wanted the first time I bought it. If you went to Sears and bought all the parts to a $600 washing machine, it would cost you $3200. There's an economy of scale at work. It's much cheaper to put out a complete product than all the individual parts. Good luck.

    Dan
    I'm as bad as the Worst. But, thank God, I'm also as good as the Best.

  24. #24
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    Your biggest decision is whether to start off with a hardtail or go straight to full suspension. I was a roadie for many years before I got into mountain biking and was very hesitant about full suspension. I also remember how crap some of the early full suspension bikes were! However after riding serious trails on a short travel FS (Cannondale Scalpel) I quickly realised my friends on longer travel XC bikes were kicking my ass over more technical trails and particularly downhill. I recently upgraded to a 5.5" travel FS trailbike and have never looked back. My riding improved and I can now easily clean rough sections I previously walked and fly downhill. Personally I would only go for a hardtail if your budget is tight or you only intend to ride very smooth trails/paths. The only real downside to FS is the cost, which is considerable.

    My point really is that if you decide to go for a relatively cheap hardtail, there's a very good chance you'll be replacing it with a more serious trailbike in the near future. Nearly everyone I know has gone through this process. Just bear this in mind when you consider how long you intend keeping the bike. From what you say, it sounds like you are fairly serious about mountain biking so it may well be cheaper in the long run to increase your budget now. If you are already considering the Rockhopper, also take a good look at the Stumpjumper FSR.

  25. #25
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    goin shopping

    thanks for the advice. very helpful. based on it, i'm gonna go see what kinda deals might be available on previous years' fs bikes at my local shops. i'll keep you posted.

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