Looking for bike purchase advice- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Looking for bike purchase advice

    I haven't been active here in years a lot happened we had a baby that is now 6 1/2 and getting into biking. In that time frame we sold our bikes due to not riding them when he was younger and running out of storage space in our old house to store them. Now that our son is getting back into biking and we live in the mountains where the trails are literally in our back yard DH and I are on the hunt again for new bikes. We thought about going with hybrids but that didn't make sense at the end of the day since we live up where there are trails so it makes more sense to use mountain bikes. New bike budget is a max of $700 but I would like to stay under.

    My old bike was a Specialized Myka and I adored that bike it was amazing, it was a long time ago and I can't remember what year it was but it had the higher end brakes and the seat on it was amazing. I've been looking and it looks like Specialized has stopped making it along with a lot of their women bikes. I'm 5'2" with longer legs and a shorter upper torso and have ridden a few bikes that I do like.

    I tried out a S Liv Bliss the other day and I really loved it but would want to upgrade to Lite $500 or 2 $460, as I feel more comfortable with disc or hyrdaulic brakes. It doesn't have a lockout fork but I'm not sure that is a huge need right now as again our son is only 6 1/2 and just starting. I like the fit of this bike for my shorter upper body the seat was not the best though.

    I tried out a S Cannondale Tango 2 2017 this bike was really great and I loved everything about it. Minus the price $656 seemed kinda pricey compared to some other bikes I've seen. They also make the Forray 1 which I enjoyed as well but it doesn't have a lockout fork the colors are pretty awesome on this and it is more align to $550. I like everything about both of these bikes but I am concerned I might be overspending on these.

    I also rode a S Marin Wildcat Trail 1 $429 which was pretty sweet as well. Talking to the guy at the bike store he is waiting to get the Wildcat Trail 3 in it has the hydraulic brakes and the lockout at $599. I can't give this a fair shake on ride yet because he didn't have the higher end model in stock but I did like the Trail 1 it was comparable to the Liv Bliss. The seat was comfortable as well.

    I haven't began to look at the Specialized bikes yet but a local shop near us is having a close out sale this weekend on older models they have left in stock and I'm not sure what they have left. Is it worth looking at their women's Pitch and Rockhooper? Is a lockout fork something I should be spending money on or should I wait and see if we do more advanced trails in a few years and upgrade then?

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    I wouldn't worry about the lockout fork at all, you are out to have fun, and it is one less thing to fiddle with. Disc brakes would be nice, they work better and require fewer adjustments. I have cable discs (BB7s) on 2 bikes and those work nearly as good as hydraulic and have been bombproof. Your budget is not overspending if you are really going to use them on trails, which are harder on bike parts. Even for rail trails, it would be worthwhile. The stock saddle is rarely a hit, so you may want to reserve some money for an upgrade in case it is not a good fit. That said, any saddle will be uncomfortable until you have some miles in, so give it -and your seat - a chance. Congrats and report back on your first rides!

  3. #3
    L1MEY
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    At this stage I would go with the one that fits the best and not worry about having hydro brakes or lockout. Cable actuated disc brakes are fine, and entry level forks are usually on the stiff side anyway for us smaller folk so you probably won't need to lock it out. Don't limit yourself to only women's models... most women's bikes are actually just a unisex model painted a different colour with a women's saddle and possibly thinner/narrower grips/bars. You'll most likely replace the saddle anyway, and bars are easy to cut if they're too wide, so including unisex bikes will give you more to choose from. One of the best things you can do for comfort and confidence is to run wide, tubeless tyres at low pressure, so if you can, look for a bike that will run plus tyres.

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  4. #4
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    When buying a new bike, there are three things I keep in mind: budget, fun factor, and fit.

    In regards to budget, know that you are going to upgrade/change some things to get your bike to fit YOU perfectly. I have never kept a stock seat, for example, and have almost always changed up the handlebars and replaced the tires (pretty much in the parking lot).

    Within that budget, note the fun factor. Get the bike that fits your expectations and goals. Where do you want to be at the end of the season? What do you like to ride? In response to your specific questions, lock out is not necessary. Hydro disc brakes make things more fun but cable actuated disc brakes are just as snazzy - again, depending on the terrain you will be riding and your riding style. Know thyself, in short, and make sure that the bike you select will empower you to rock your riding style.

    And finally, fit. This is the MOST important thing. Your bike needs to fit you. Period. Test any bike out and look at how it fits you - particularly with reach.

    I say get a bike that you can afford NOW and start riding. The trails are waiting for you!

  5. #5
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    Thanks ladies I finally decided yesterday on a bike I test rode it at least twice and we found a super good deal on it. I tried a lot of unisex bikes this week and I found then to be really big in the reach, I have a super short upper torso and the stand over on them was a bit much as well. Overall the rides were not as smooth as the others and after some research I ruled out the Liv bikes due to some of the parts on that versus the others. While I loved the Cannondale it would have to special order it and I found a better bike a few years older model with better parts. The Marin sadly at the local shop would take a few weeks to get in too and he sold the entry level S earlier this week.

    So instead I went with a 2015 Specialized Jynx 650 Comp regular $800 but the local shop I went to that I test rode at twice were having their annual year end clearance sale so I got it for $500. The components on the bike easily were better in some places vs. the Liv and the Cannondale. It will come with a year of service if I have any problem was was definitely the most comfortable of all the ones I rode yesterday with how it fit me. I think the only thing I will change down the line is the saddle and with the savings that I got on the bike I went ahead and set some aside for that. But I won't know till I actually start to ride it a bit. Another plus was it was in the grape/lime/white colorway so overall I feel like I got a good bike and stayed will within my budget with a little on the side for some extras.

    It rained all day yesterday and is supposed to rain today to but I am super excited to take it on it's first ride when the weather clears up.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by kellyzollo View Post
    Thanks ladies I finally decided yesterday on a bike I test rode it at least twice and we found a super good deal on it. I tried a lot of unisex bikes this week and I found then to be really big in the reach, I have a super short upper torso and the stand over on them was a bit much as well. Overall the rides were not as smooth as the others and after some research I ruled out the Liv bikes due to some of the parts on that versus the others. While I loved the Cannondale it would have to special order it and I found a better bike a few years older model with better parts. The Marin sadly at the local shop would take a few weeks to get in too and he sold the entry level S earlier this week.

    So instead I went with a 2015 Specialized Jynx 650 Comp regular $800 but the local shop I went to that I test rode at twice were having their annual year end clearance sale so I got it for $500. The components on the bike easily were better in some places vs. the Liv and the Cannondale. It will come with a year of service if I have any problem was was definitely the most comfortable of all the ones I rode yesterday with how it fit me. I think the only thing I will change down the line is the saddle and with the savings that I got on the bike I went ahead and set some aside for that. But I won't know till I actually start to ride it a bit. Another plus was it was in the grape/lime/white colorway so overall I feel like I got a good bike and stayed will within my budget with a little on the side for some extras.

    It rained all day yesterday and is supposed to rain today to but I am super excited to take it on it's first ride when the weather clears up.
    New bike Pics or it didn't happen!!

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