After 15 years it's time for an upgrade- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    After 15 years it's time for an upgrade

    I've been riding along happily on my 1999 Raleigh M80 off and on for the last 15 years. In all honesty, it has been more off than on. A short while ago I decided it was finally time to work on shedding the extra 40lbs of weight I'm carrying around and get back on the bike. What a great decision that was. Not only am I starting to shed that extra weight but, imagine this, Iím having a blast!

    After consistently riding for the last 2 months I now find myself asking why I waited so long. At first I was just riding the local paved trails here as I didn't really want to get very adventurous too quickly. Iím no spring chicken anymore but the idea of flying off of my bike doesnít sound nearly as much fun at 43 as it did at 23. That being said though, I am ready to step up my game a bit and start hitting some of the local mountain bike trails here in the area. To do that I decided it was time for me to upgrade my faithful companion. I made this decision after riding on a friendís bike and noticing how much better the ride was than on mine. His bike is about 5 years old but it was light years ahead of my M80.

    Just today I purchased a 2013 Marin Bobcat Trail 29er. I know itís only an entry level bike but comparing it to what I am coming from, itís night and day. Iím not really prepared to drop big bucks(big bucks being relative) just yet on a bike so that is partly why I made the decision to go with this particular Marin. I canít begin to tell you how excited I am. When it arrives in about 12 days I hope it will be as faithful to me as my last bike was. I also hope to update you all on just how much fun Iím having on my new ride.

    P.S. Yes, it was a Ebay/Crosslakesales purchase. Got that last bid in and it was the winner.
    Last edited by Wizzinator; 05-22-2014 at 07:11 PM.

  2. #2
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    The 2013 Marin Bobcat Trail 29er is a great bike for the price (if you got an ebay deal Crosslakes or Randon Bikes). I purchased one for my son and he loves it. I just purchased one of the 2012 Rock Springs Elite 29ers for myself and can't wait for the package to arrive!


    I am really surprised by the lack of attention that Marin gets. Even without the online deals they produce an exceptional frame with excellent components for a very competitive price when you compare them to others.

    I know everyone loves to talk about Airborne being the goto bargain deal (I was VERY close to pulling the trigger on a Goblin), but Marin has them beat in my opinion.

    Congrats on your purchase!

  3. #3
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    I had my 1996 Marin Nail Trail stolen back in December. Been riding that off and on for quite a while. When I went out shopping for a new bike I was pretty surprised how much things had changed. At first I was like: "Do I really need hydraulic disk brakes" and now it is "Wow these hydraulic brakes are fantastic!"

    I also picked up one of the Marin Bobcats 29er for a while. I liked it a lot. But just for nostalgia sake and the fact it was a great deal, I sold the Bobcat and got a Nail Trail.

    I am confident you will love the Marin Bobcat, if you bond with the 29er. It is a great frame, and the Raidon fork is decent, IMO. I also liked the Tektro Draco 2 brakes. There was really nothing not to love about that bike. Took 20 minutes to put together and had no issues.

    Congrats...

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Semitone View Post
    I had my 1996 Marin Nail Trail stolen back in December. Been riding that off and on for quite a while. When I went out shopping for a new bike I was pretty surprised how much things had changed. At first I was like: "Do I really need hydraulic disk brakes" and now it is "Wow these hydraulic brakes are fantastic!"

    I also picked up one of the Marin Bobcats 29er for a while. I liked it a lot. But just for nostalgia sake and the fact it was a great deal, I sold the Bobcat and got a Nail Trail.

    I am confident you will love the Marin Bobcat, if you bond with the 29er. It is a great frame, and the Raidon fork is decent, IMO. I also liked the Tektro Draco 2 brakes. There was really nothing not to love about that bike. Took 20 minutes to put together and had no issues.

    Congrats...
    2014 Nail Trail is a nice ride!

  5. #5
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    I got the 2013 because it was a great deal ( the eBay Crosslake/Random Bike closeouts). It works for me, although I am still not even sure I am a fan of 29ers. Depends on the trail. Sometimes the smaller bikes work better for me.

    No doubt the 2014 are great too, but I would have to wait until next year to buy one.

  6. #6
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    2013 actually comes with better components in my opinion. Only difference is really a 3x10 vs 2x10 and that can be changed inexpensively.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by XCGator View Post
    The 2013 Marin Bobcat Trail 29er is a great bike for the price (if you got an ebay deal Crosslakes or Randon Bikes). I purchased one for my son and he loves it. I just purchased one of the 2012 Rock Springs Elite 29ers for myself and can't wait for the package to arrive!


    I am really surprised by the lack of attention that Marin gets. Even without the online deals they produce an exceptional frame with excellent components for a very competitive price when you compare them to others.
    They do make great bikes and since they were bought a couple years ago, have been undergoing major changes. I think the changes are good.
    They are usually more expensive than other companies though.
    The only reason these Marin's are a great value is they are year end closeouts, and some are model closeouts.
    Not too many people are going to buy a 26er when the new frame has been completely redesigned and now has a new suspension system and 650b wheels. But at $1200 I couldn't resist that XM7.


    That Bobcat 29er will make a great bike for years to come.

  8. #8
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    Grats on the new bike! I went the same route and I love the Bobcat 29er. The LBS seemed impressed with Marin and a couple local SS/rigid fork guys were admiring it on the stand when I picked it up. Apparently very few people ride Marin bikes in my area (outside ATL), but they said the company has a good rep here. I know I sound like a Marin cultist, but now I get why some people are adamant about these bikes. I've never ridden anything high end and I know the Bobcat 29er is considered entry level, but I've been really happy with it so far, particularly with the air fork for the dough.
    2013 Marin Bobcat Trail 29er

    It's not enough to bash in heads
    , you've got to bash in minds. - Captain Hammer

  9. #9
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    It's awesome hearing all the positive comments on these bikes. It is scheduled to arrive next Thursday so hopefully I'll be on it in about 12 days. I gotta tell you, I'm really impressed with the quickness in which Crosslake got the bike sent out.

  10. #10
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    I'm sure you'll enjoy the bike - the bobcat has a very good quality frame, good brakes and the fork is good enough that you won't feel like it is completely useless on the trail. One place you might want to make small but worthwhile investment off the bat is pedals -the ones that come stock are thankfully not plastic, but are still really placeholders for something decent. You say you're not interested in flying off the bike- well, pedals are pretty important in that regard.

  11. #11
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    My bike got delivered today and I've already dropped it off at my local LBS for assembly. Hopefully I'll have it back by Saturday and can take it out for a spin. I was pretty happy with the fast delivery, especially considering that we had a holiday on Monday.
    2013 Marin Bobcat Trail 29er, 20.5

  12. #12
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    Grats on the new ride
    2013 Marin Bobcat Trail 29er

    It's not enough to bash in heads
    , you've got to bash in minds. - Captain Hammer

  13. #13
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    Got my bike back from my LBS yesterday and took it out for a spin. Gotta say, I am very pleased. Today, I found myself riding twice as far as I did on my old M80 and felt better than I did when I did half the distance on the old bike.

    I still have new grips and pedals to put on it but I had to get a few rides in before I make that happen. Hopefully there will be many days of fun to come on this.

    After 15 years it's time for an upgrade-camera-001.jpg
    2013 Marin Bobcat Trail 29er, 20.5

  14. #14
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    Those frames and color schemes are sexy. Enjoy.

  15. #15
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    I also ordered the bobcat 17". My first MTB purchase. The bike was delivered today. Can't wait to put it together. Got here (s.w. fla) in 3 days! Only thing I'm on the fence about is assembling myself or taking it to one of the LBS and have them do it for $45-$55. I know its an easy assembly but just concerned about marin honoring the warranty "if" there was a problem down the road.

  16. #16
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    Re: After 15 years it's time for an upgrade

    Quote Originally Posted by Desertride View Post
    I'm sure you'll enjoy the bike - the bobcat has a very good quality frame, good brakes and the fork is good enough that you won't feel like it is completely useless on the trail. One place you might want to make small but worthwhile investment off the bat is pedals -the ones that come stock are thankfully not plastic, but are still really placeholders for something decent. You say you're not interested in flying off the bike- well, pedals are pretty important in that regard.
    What's a good pedal replacement? Something cost friendly

  17. #17
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    Congrats on a great bike, I picked up a Mount Vision XM8 from Crosslake and they are great. Depending on if you want clipless or flats you can get some Crank Bros Candy with the composite pretty cheap and there are so many flat choices I just picked these up Amazon.com : Wellgo Alloy BMX Sealed Mountain Bike Pedal, 9/16-Inch, Black : Bmx Platform : Sports & Outdoors and they seem pretty good so far.

  18. #18
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    Im looking to get back into riding. Have not ridden since 2008. Looking at the bobcat from crosslake sales and have a sizing question. I'm 6'0" with a 33-34 inseam and looking at Marin site im thinking a 17" would be about right. 31.5 standover. Anyone with similar build with this bike that can help? Thanks

  19. #19
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    Re: After 15 years it's time for an upgrade

    Quote Originally Posted by Olowalu View Post
    Im looking to get back into riding. Have not ridden since 2008. Looking at the bobcat from crosslake sales and have a sizing question. I'm 6'0" with a 33-34 inseam and looking at Marin site im thinking a 17" would be about right. 31.5 standover. Anyone with similar build with this bike that can help? Thanks
    I just got my bobcat yesterday. I'm 5'7" elw/ 30.5"-31" inseam and got the 17" and its perfect for me. I was hesitant to get it over the 15" but I'm glad I got the 17". Also if u get the bobcat you will be very happy with the purchase.

  20. #20
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    Congrats on the new bike-always a blast. I have a 1999 Raleigh M80 and was thinking of selling it. Do you have any idea what it would sell for? I saw one on craigslist in Boston which is going for 350 and am pretty sure that is wildly exorbitant.

  21. #21
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    Got it

    Quote Originally Posted by Olowalu View Post
    Im looking to get back into riding. Have not ridden since 2008. Looking at the bobcat from crosslake sales and have a sizing question. I'm 6'0" with a 33-34 inseam and looking at Marin site im thinking a 17" would be about right. 31.5 standover. Anyone with similar build with this bike that can help? Thanks
    I got the bobcat back in July and have to say im very impressed . If you're on a budget its hard to go wrong with this bike. 600 bucks shipped to my door. Comparing apples to apples you can not get this much bike at your lbs for this price. The raidon front shock performs great. Prolly one of the best entry level forks out there. Blows the rockshox x28 outta the water. 32mm stanchions on the raidon. Just install the fork, handlebars , front tire and disc brake. Gave it a quick tuneup and good to go. Drivetrain works great. Have not had to tweak any since initial tuning. Shifts flawlessly through whole range. This bikes handle very well on sinlge tracks nimble and quick. Climbs like a freakin goat. You guys out there please watch vids and learn how to work on your own bikes. Will save you a hell of alot of money and is very valuable if broken down on the trails.
    BTW... The only thing I would change on this bike are the pedals. Standard cheap pedals come with. I will be buying some new platforms in the near future.
    After 15 years it's time for an upgrade-p9290018.jpg

  22. #22
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    I've been riding my 1999 Rift Zone from new, but love to improve things, and it recently occured to me that the only things left of the original were the frame and headset, absolutely everything else has been upgraded

    So, am now replacing the frame with a chinese equivalent, and a Hope headset (and some other goodies too). At some point I guess I'll have to stop thinking I ride a Marin

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