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  1. #1
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    Need your experience and advice on these bikes!

    I know there are probably a million posts like this one but help a new mountain biker out:

    I am new to MTB but addicted to it - right now I only do singletrack and trails but want to also get some harder trails and freeride in - if I get braver. For the most part I still will do mostly single track/trails mostly b/c that's my level now and that's the terrain around here.

    Looking at the following:
    Enduro Comp/Expert
    Kikapu Deluxe
    VT2

    Want to get one used for my limited budget, What do you guys think of each bike in the 03/04 area? I am 5'10" and bounce around 185-195lbs.

    Thanks everyone!

  2. #2
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    If you want to get more into freeride type trails i would go with the kona or vt but the giant has a shatty frame prone to breaking but if your in it for the workout go for the specialized. I love it. It shows you how much fun climbing can be

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtbsloth
    If you want to get more into freeride type trails i would go with the kona or vt but the giant has a shatty frame prone to breaking but if your in it for the workout go for the specialized. I love it. It shows you how much fun climbing can be
    Do you mean that the Enduro is a bit heavier? Also what do think about the rear shock on these - I think the VT has got the Swinger SPV but the others have just the fox float or something.

    Would you say the Stumpjumper FSR is better than the Enduro?

  4. #4
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    If you're looking to do harder trais, a Kona Dawg or Dawgmatic might be better than a Kikapu...

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by dinger
    If you're looking to do harder trais, a Kona Dawg or Dawgmatic might be better than a Kikapu...
    Hmm.. you know aside from struggling with understanding what is exactly freeride - I don't know what exactly is a "hard" trail. Since I am a beginner - I get my butt kicked basically by trails. I went to one recently that was listed as advanced and some people said was very technical and hard - but perhaps its more the issue with the rider than the bike. So then how hard does it need to be before a bike like the Dawg is required vs the Kikapu... or the VT or whatever other bike. Anyone?

    Thanks.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by FuelingAround
    Hmm.. you know aside from struggling with understanding what is exactly freeride - I don't know what exactly is a "hard" trail. Since I am a beginner - I get my butt kicked basically by trails. I went to one recently that was listed as advanced and some people said was very technical and hard - but perhaps its more the issue with the rider than the bike. So then how hard does it need to be before a bike like the Dawg is required vs the Kikapu... or the VT or whatever other bike. Anyone?

    Thanks.
    There's no answer to that question, since the line between these two bikes is fuzzy anyway, as well as what defines a "hard" trail. But anyway, to make things very simple, you should go with the Kikapu if you plan to race at all, since it is lighter. Something like the Dawg (which is a much closer match to the Giant VT or Specialized Enduro) would be good if you want to do big drops and such (say, over 3"). Someone could probably explain this better than me.

  7. #7
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    my .02

    You want the best performance, value, and service you can get. Pick your store and ride, those 2 you gotta live with.

    IMHO the Enduro is a very good value and offers proven design and low cost. It doesn't have an SPV (stable platform = no bob on pedalling) shock, but that shouldn't be an issue unless you are racing, or need the handling on high speed descents. It works best on single pivot bikes to control bobbing. You can have the shock made into SPV later by Push Industries if you need to have it done.

    Any of the brand name bikes will suit you well, just make sure that it fits you really really well, and you'll have a ball.

    Jim

  8. #8
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    Propedal vs SPV

    Another way to look at it is what do you guys think between the Fox Propedal vs the Manitou SPV?

  9. #9
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    beaten to death already

    search. Jim

  10. #10
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    Thanks for the advice

    Thanks for all the advice. I been diligently searching ebay and mtbr classifieds and calling stores. Trying to get a good deal on a closeout for this newbie budget.

    Still looking at VT or Kikapu Deelux (yes I know they are at different spectrums). Got hooked on the Heckler too but no luck getting a good deal for that one. The thing about the Kona is it is similarly priced, has great rep - but why are the components all lower?

    Also VT aren't be made anymore - wonder if this will be an issue - I mean they are lifetime warranty so that means they have to replace or upgrade right? Kona only has 4 years?

    I dropped the Enduro b/c only the 2004 are rated high and the lbs said avoid 2003's b/c they had a problem with breaking somewhere I forget. I started looking at Jamis XLT too b/c it looked like great value and rating but I read in forums alot about it breaking.

    Also I am getting so annoyed, and tired with battling all the scammers! Luckily I am very observant to detail and very careful - so have identified scammers! I even help ebay and MTBR catch a few. Why can't people just be honest? Is there a posting where people go to record if they got scammed so the rest of us can be forewarned and lookup a certain person?

    Again thanks everybody and keep the opinions coming!

  11. #11
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    Another great bike....

    This is the top model Remix, but you can look into the lower models, which offer great components/reliability at a good price.
    this model CAD is 3,200.00
    http://www.devinci.com/english/2005_usa.html

    The Remix 1 I think runs around 1,900 CAD

  12. #12
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    Good job! Giant VT2

    I have the VT2. Bought in April and have been riding alot. Came off a C-Dale F1000, hardtail. The VT2 has been a great bike for me and the type of riding I have been doing. I am 6' 1" and weigh 190. You can dial in both the front and rear shock for your weight and riding style. THere have been no problems with frame integrity yet. Have been doing plenty of fast downhills with lots of drop offs. It climbs well also. Right now you can get them very reasonably because they are being discontinued. Probably about $1400. I know a shop that has a medium frame in stock. Good luck on your purchase, can't go wrong with the VT2.

  13. #13
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    Weight issues?

    Quote Originally Posted by JeffSkisMontana
    I have the VT2. Bought in April and have been riding alot. Came off a C-Dale F1000, hardtail. The VT2 has been a great bike for me and the type of riding I have been doing. I am 6' 1" and weigh 190. You can dial in both the front and rear shock for your weight and riding style. THere have been no problems with frame integrity yet. Have been doing plenty of fast downhills with lots of drop offs. It climbs well also. Right now you can get them very reasonably because they are being discontinued. Probably about $1400. I know a shop that has a medium frame in stock. Good luck on your purchase, can't go wrong with the VT2.
    Thanks - do you find the bike too heavy for XC or climbing?

  14. #14
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    the VT2 is discontinued

    for '05, replaced by the Trance, Faith, and Reign lines. It may, possibly, make parts hard to find down the road, as many FS bikes' mfrs don't support parts for long after a product design change. Giant may be different on this, I'm not sure how well they do support older designs. FWIW, Jim

  15. #15
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    Replacement Policy

    Quote Originally Posted by JimC.
    for '05, replaced by the Trance, Faith, and Reign lines. It may, possibly, make parts hard to find down the road, as many FS bikes' mfrs don't support parts for long after a product design change. Giant may be different on this, I'm not sure how well they do support older designs. FWIW, Jim
    Yeah that is a concern for me... I am buying a VT2 today I think since I got a good deal on a used one (off rental but they say they take it apart and rebuild it). Do you think that if they don't have any VT2 for warranty replacements then they just upgrade you? I mean lifetime warranty should mean lifetime - not "until we run out of parts".

  16. #16
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    it means the frame is warranteed....

    for defects i.e cracks or breakage. Parts aren't warranted. My experience is, along with a few other riders here, is that unless the bearings are a standard size, in about 3 years you won't be able to replace parts that wear out. So your bike becomes unusable. The new ones are a totally new design. IMHO it's riskier than buying new.

    If it's used, there is no warranty, period. Unless your shop is offering to extend you one. If they close up, then what?

    Jim

  17. #17
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    In my experience, two years after I've ridden a bike, I've gotten a new one. All of the bikes I've had, from Mongoose Pro, Schwinn to Ellsworth have all worked well for me and, ironically, were discontinued after a year. So, my suggestion is, get what you can afford - the frames are probably all real sound, upgrade as anyone would, and in a year or two, buy a boutique frame and swap the parts that you've upgraded to. That's been my strategy, and so far, it's worked for me. The fact is, the bike companies are always changing stuff and the only real constant is the parts. I figure that those bikes will outlive their warranty, so to dwell on it is unecessary. Since you're new at riding, it's not likely you'll be busting a frame any time soon. The most important thing is to get out on the trail, develop your riding. That will dictate what kind of kind of bike you grow into in the future. 3" of travel, 4? 5? Who can say, right now.

    All that said, I think the Enduro has the best suspension design and that goes a long way.

  18. #18
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    Good Point

    Quote Originally Posted by chad1433
    In my experience, two years after I've ridden a bike, I've gotten a new one. All of the bikes I've had, from Mongoose Pro, Schwinn to Ellsworth have all worked well for me and, ironically, were discontinued after a year. So, my suggestion is, get what you can afford - the frames are probably all real sound, upgrade as anyone would, and in a year or two, buy a boutique frame and swap the parts that you've upgraded to. That's been my strategy, and so far, it's worked for me. The fact is, the bike companies are always changing stuff and the only real constant is the parts. I figure that those bikes will outlive their warranty, so to dwell on it is unecessary. Since you're new at riding, it's not likely you'll be busting a frame any time soon. The most important thing is to get out on the trail, develop your riding. That will dictate what kind of kind of bike you grow into in the future. 3" of travel, 4? 5? Who can say, right now.

    All that said, I think the Enduro has the best suspension design and that goes a long way.
    Chand that is actually some good points. Thanks!

  19. #19
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    Good Point

    Quote Originally Posted by chad1433
    In my experience, two years after I've ridden a bike, I've gotten a new one. All of the bikes I've had, from Mongoose Pro, Schwinn to Ellsworth have all worked well for me and, ironically, were discontinued after a year. So, my suggestion is, get what you can afford - the frames are probably all real sound, upgrade as anyone would, and in a year or two, buy a boutique frame and swap the parts that you've upgraded to. That's been my strategy, and so far, it's worked for me. The fact is, the bike companies are always changing stuff and the only real constant is the parts. I figure that those bikes will outlive their warranty, so to dwell on it is unecessary. Since you're new at riding, it's not likely you'll be busting a frame any time soon. The most important thing is to get out on the trail, develop your riding. That will dictate what kind of kind of bike you grow into in the future. 3" of travel, 4? 5? Who can say, right now.

    All that said, I think the Enduro has the best suspension design and that goes a long way.
    Chad that is actually some good points. Thanks!

  20. #20
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    let me add

    I'll second the Enduro. After 10 years of FS bikes (replaced on average every 2 years due to lust, technology, and skill levls), the base model Enduro is perhaps one the very best I've ever ridden for general trail riding and big smiles, comfort and fun.

    Jim

  21. #21
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    Enduro issues

    Quote Originally Posted by JimC.
    I'll second the Enduro. After 10 years of FS bikes (replaced on average every 2 years due to lust, technology, and skill levls), the base model Enduro is perhaps one the very best I've ever ridden for general trail riding and big smiles, comfort and fun.

    Jim
    I too was looking at the Enduro - the local bike shop that carries Specialized highly recommended it and the Stumpjumper FSR... but only the 2004 and forward.

    For one the new Stumpjumper has the shock go through the frame. And the other was they mentioned the 2003 Enduro's had some breakage issues - something about the rear suspension or linkage. If they didn't tell me that I would have gotten a 2003 for I had a few really good deals out there. But the 2004 was too expensive for my budget.

    On that note I settled on a 2004 VT2 today - $900 - not too bad a deal? Can't wait till it comes. I get my choice of tires so I need to figure if I want the Continental Diesel, Vertical Pro, or Gravity.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by FuelingAround
    Do you mean that the Enduro is a bit heavier? Also what do think about the rear shock on these - I think the VT has got the Swinger SPV but the others have just the fox float or something.
    i actually think that Fox makes better shocks than manitou, but that's my opinion...

    Quote Originally Posted by FuelingAround
    Would you say the Stumpjumper FSR is better than the Enduro?
    no. i would say that they're different. stumpy = more light-duty/fast riding, enduro = more heavy duty-ish.
    People who really know what happened aren't talking. And the people who don't have a clue, you can't shut them up.
    Tom Waits

  23. #23
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    Good deal!

    it's all about the smile on your face and the fun you have. Enjoy your new ride! Jim

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    Where did you find that deal?

    Is it a 2004 VT-2? Is it new or used? If new, where did you buy it?

    Quote Originally Posted by FuelingAround
    I too was looking at the Enduro - the local bike shop that carries Specialized highly recommended it and the Stumpjumper FSR... but only the 2004 and forward.

    For one the new Stumpjumper has the shock go through the frame. And the other was they mentioned the 2003 Enduro's had some breakage issues - something about the rear suspension or linkage. If they didn't tell me that I would have gotten a 2003 for I had a few really good deals out there. But the 2004 was too expensive for my budget.

    On that note I settled on a 2004 VT2 today - $900 - not too bad a deal? Can't wait till it comes. I get my choice of tires so I need to figure if I want the Continental Diesel, Vertical Pro, or Gravity.

  25. #25
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    Ride it like you stole it! I've heard good things about the VT bikes. Those that have them, love them.

    Happy Riding!

  26. #26
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    Rental

    Quote Originally Posted by sbermhb
    Is it a 2004 VT-2? Is it new or used? If new, where did you buy it?
    Sbermhb - it is used - was used as their rental fleet of bikes in the moab.

  27. #27
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    Good job! Nice Going

    Good choice, Good deal, Good riding! Enjoy.

  28. #28
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    Serial Number

    For those of you who have a VT-2 or exp with one - where do you find the serial number for the bike?

    Also anybody do the National Bike Registry?

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