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  1. #1
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    Question on prices

    I am considering buying a FS mountain bike. I was at Oshman's the other day and they had some nice looking Mongoose bikes with FS and Shimano drivetrain going for $299 - $499. However, when I look online for advice on FS bikes, it seems most recommend a budget of $1500+ for a decent model. This doesn't pertain only to FS, but what are the benefits to spending so much for a bike? What advantages will this bike have over the cheaper ones. The only thing I have figured out is the more you pay the less it weighs. I also want to know what are the disadvantages to the $300 FS Mongoose at Oshman's? (just weight?) I am not competing or racing, so would you not recommend a bike like this for me? Thanks for your help!

  2. #2
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    from 'beginners' forum...

    An excellent article at ConsumerReports.org titled "Cheap bikes are not bargains"

    http://www.consumerreports.org/main...D=1087597178997

    ************************************************
    Wal-Mart and Toys R Us sell plenty of bikes from brands such as Huffy, Mongoose, Roadmaster, and Schwinn for $100 to $200. They seem like good deals, so why would we advise you to spend $300 or more for a bike in the Ratings (available to subscribers)?

    Because you get what you pay for. Mass-market bikes have cheaper construction than higher-priced bikes and can weigh 7 or 8 pounds more. They come in only one size, so you're not likely to get a great fit. And mass merchants can't match bike shops for quality of assembly, expert advice, and service.

    In the long run, performance matters most, so we tried out two full-suspension bikes and one front-suspension model from the big-box stores, priced at $120 to $230. Shifting of the full-suspension bikes' 21 speeds wasn't nearly as smooth as on bike-shop models. Shock absorption and handling were fair to decent on pavement and on smooth dirt paths, but these so-called mountain bikes couldn't handle rough off-road terrain. On steep paved roads, the extra weight, poor gearing, and mushy suspensions made pedaling uphill very hard.

    The front-suspension model, also with 21 speeds, did much better on pavement and on fairly smooth dirt trails--but only after we adjusted the sloppy setup to make it roadworthy. Plus it comes in only one size, so fit will be hit or miss.

    Consider cheaper bikes from a department store only for the most casual adult use, and stick with a front-suspension model, which is likely to be better than a cheap full-suspension bike. You may want a mass-market bike for kids who will outgrow a bike quickly or toss it about.

  3. #3
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    lowest priced FS to look at is the Giant Warp series. Anything less is as below.

    Quote Originally Posted by JimC.
    An excellent article at ConsumerReports.org titled "Cheap bikes are not bargains"

    http://www.consumerreports.org/main...D=1087597178997

    ************************************************
    Wal-Mart and Toys ?R? Us sell plenty of bikes from brands such as Huffy, Mongoose, Roadmaster, and Schwinn for $100 to $200. They seem like good deals, so why would we advise you to spend $300 or more for a bike in the Ratings (available to subscribers)?

    Because you get what you pay for. Mass-market bikes have cheaper construction than higher-priced bikes and can weigh 7 or 8 pounds more. They come in only one size, so you're not likely to get a great fit. And mass merchants can't match bike shops for quality of assembly, expert advice, and service.

    In the long run, performance matters most, so we tried out two full-suspension bikes and one front-suspension model from the big-box stores, priced at $120 to $230. Shifting of the full-suspension bikes' 21 speeds wasn't nearly as smooth as on bike-shop models. Shock absorption and handling were fair to decent on pavement and on smooth dirt paths, but these so-called mountain bikes couldn't handle rough off-road terrain. On steep paved roads, the extra weight, poor gearing, and mushy suspensions made pedaling uphill very hard.

    The front-suspension model, also with 21 speeds, did much better on pavement and on fairly smooth dirt trails--but only after we adjusted the sloppy setup to make it roadworthy. Plus it comes in only one size, so fit will be hit or miss.

    Consider cheaper bikes from a department store only for the most casual adult use, and stick with a front-suspension model, which is likely to be better than a cheap full-suspension bike. You may want a mass-market bike for kids who will outgrow a bike quickly or toss it about.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by JimC.
    lowest priced FS to look at is the Giant Warp series. Anything less is as below.
    I own a Warp, and while I love it, I recognize it's limitations in terms of it's stock components, and will upgrade it as I go along. I bought a Warp DS2 for $460, and have already upgraded the fork, wheelset, and will put discs on it. I'll lay out $1000, all included, once I upgrade the drive train. To me, this will be an very good bike for $1,000.

    Bottom line, to answer the question, you get what you pay for, and the quality of the components, and their durability is what you want to consider. Do your research, and make your choice wisely. Understand that you WILL sink money into the bike regardless of what you buy.

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

  5. #5
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    Thanks for everyone's replies. I checked out the Warp series, too expensive for my budget. I believe I have narrowed down my decision to two bikes: K2 Sidewinder or AMX Axion. The Axion might be a bit lighter and the rear suspension looks beefier but I like the components better on the K2. Also, I believe the K2 is a 21 speed while the Axion is 24. Should this be a big factor for me? Both of these bikes are going for $400 on clearance at Oshmans, K2 reg price is $500, AMX Axion reg price is $700. Can anyone suggest which bike I should get or give me some advantages to each? $400 is maxing my budget out, are there any other bikes I should be looking at in this price range? Thanks again!

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vargs
    Thanks for everyone's replies. I checked out the Warp series, too expensive for my budget. I believe I have narrowed down my decision to two bikes: K2 Sidewinder or AMX Axion. The Axion might be a bit lighter and the rear suspension looks beefier but I like the components better on the K2. Also, I believe the K2 is a 21 speed while the Axion is 24. Should this be a big factor for me? Both of these bikes are going for $400 on clearance at Oshmans, K2 reg price is $500, AMX Axion reg price is $700. Can anyone suggest which bike I should get or give me some advantages to each? $400 is maxing my budget out, are there any other bikes I should be looking at in this price range? Thanks again!
    Stay away from a department store bike. Period. I don't know anything about the AMX brand, and looking at the K2 reviews on this site, the Sidewinder isn't listed. That's probably not a good indication.For your 400, go to a local bike store (LBS) and spend your 400 on a product from Gaint, Trek, or one of the other manufacturers recommended on other " what bike should I buy on a limited budget" threads posted in these forums.

    It might be difficult to believe, but nobody here is trying to sell you something you don't need. The advice here is going to be sound, and the only way you'll find that out is to experience it for yourself. $400.00 will basically buy you a decent entry level hardtail bike with competent components. Look at a Giant Yukon, for example. Don't get caught up in department store/sports specialty store "list prices", they're bogus for the most part.

    Take a deep breath, relieve some of that itch to spend your monet too quickly, educate yourself over the next month or so, and then make a well informed purchase. I guarantee it will make a difference in the quality of the bike you purchase.

    Respectfully,

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

  7. #7
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    In your price range, I would stay away from and Full-Suspension bike. I just started mountain biking and I too thought I could get an FS bike for 500 dollars. The problem is that the shocks they come with are terrible and klunk with every little bump. Since My budget was under 1000 dollars, I settled for a Cannondale F-400 which was bought for $699 in September 2004. I credit this bike for opening my eyes up to the world of mountain biking. Within two weeks I was shedding the clip pedals and opting for a pair of Time Atac Carbon pedals. I just raced for the first time and I ride about 3 days per week. You have to get a decent hardtail with your price range and stay away from the FS. I bought my girlfriend a Trek 4300 for $350 and she loves it. I think it is a little too heavy for me, but I love the way it sprints. I think Cannodale makes an F-300 which would be closer to your price range around $500. The best thing about Cannodale is the lifetime warranty on the frame. In addition, getting a hardtail will help you on your climbs since cheap FS bikes bob up and down when your pedaling standing up from the saddle. In conclusion, I am now shopping for an FS bike in the 2000 and up range thanks to my eye opening experiences on my trusty Cannondale. If I started with a junk bike, I probaly would of thought differently since bad experiences would have frustrated me.


    Okay with that said, I have a question.

    Does anyone have an opinion on this bike? I saw in DirtRag and it had a good review and the price is cheap.
    http://www.motobecane.com/MBUSAftt.html

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