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Old 06-26-2014, 02:49 PM
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Jacket Jacket is offline
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Default Mountain Bike Buying

I've been in analysis paralysis for too long now; I need some help. Subzali had a good thread on this topic from 5 years ago, but I'll see what you folks think now about buying a mtn bike. Here's the basics for me.

- I had an older Trek hardtail that was given to me as a birthday present 10+ years ago. It spent a lot of time pulling a Burley around town while my kids were growing up. Plus a bit of riding around the front range, Boulder county and the like. I go through spurts where I'm really into it, and then I get distracted. The Trek got stolen last fall. I had a Specialized Rockhopper before that.

- I'm a pretty casual mtn biker. Middle-aged, all mountain guy that enjoys technical terrain and some climbing and downhills. Betasso, Marshall Mesa, and stuff like that around here.

- Seems like I want a 26", full suspension, decent travel up front kind of bike with a bias toward trail vs XC.

What to buy?

New vs used. I've been focused on a nice used bike with good components. I'd rather spend $1000 on a formerly $3000 bike with high end parts, then on a brand new bike with moderate parts. Does that seem right? I don't want a ragged out bike that someone has beaten up and then moved on from. Always a risk with used stuff, but I don't think I can afford the new bikes for what I think I want.

Models?

I've been eyeballing the Giant's, specifically the Reign or Trance. Something like this looks interesting:

http://denver.craigslist.org/bik/4539073151.html

Specialized, Yeti, Santa Cruz - stuff at the higher end of the mass market bikes. Not interested in Trek anymore. I'm not in tune enough to pay attention to the boutique bikes. Other brands/models I should be searching for? Does Huffy make sweet bikes now?

There are a lot of options. Search CL for a Specialized Epic, and there are dozens of bikes with all kinds of descriptions. Hard to know where to zero in.

Help me out...
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Old 06-26-2014, 03:00 PM
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Personally I wouldn't get a 26" MTB anymore. Otherwise what you're describing will be $1K. Blur, Remedy or Fuel EX, Trance or Reign, Stumpjumper FSR, Yeti 575, etc. IMHO at this point all the 26" trail bikes it's about the right price for something with decent components that isn't worn out silly since the current trend of technology is 650b/27.5" wheels that make a ton more sense (in fact Giant no longer makes 26" MTBs except for the very low end) for all mountain use. Even the hard core downhillers are going to the bigger wheels, so the writing is on the wall.

FWIW I went to 29er and even a hard tail and I love it. I miss my old Blur once in a while but mostly not.
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Old 06-26-2014, 03:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jacket View Post
I'd rather spend $1000 on a formerly $3000 bike with high end parts, then on a brand new bike with moderate parts. Does that seem right?
Yes. Excellent plan.

I'm biased towards Yeti and 26". I have not ridden anything in 27.5 so I can't comment. Since Yeti is no longer making the SB66, you might be able to find some good deals on frames or demo bikes. Golden Bike Shop had some as did Sports Garage in Boulder.

I have heard nothing but good things about both the Reign and Trance so I don't think you could go wrong with either one of those.

There's an FB group called Front Range Bike Swap. Take a look. Lots of really nice bikes looking for a good home. There can also be good stuff posted on the TGR Sprocket Rocket forum.

Whatever you wind up with, if you need any wrenching help, let me know. More than happy to true some wheels and dial-in the suspension, brakes and drive train. If you're going to overhaul the fork and/or shock, I highly recommend a visit to Luby over at Dirtlabs. Great guy, highly knowledgeable and rides a KTM Adventure with a bike rack.
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Old 06-26-2014, 03:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveInDenver View Post
Personally I wouldn't get a 26" MTB anymore.
But, but, jared graves is racking up the wins this year on his sb66. That kinda makes me chuckle since Yeti killed that frame last year. They are also no longer making a 26" wheeled frame.

Not really sure what to make of it. I absolutely love both my 26" bikes, trail and downhill. My SS is a 29" and it's fun to ride at times. It definitely climbs faster and rolls over stuff with way less effort. I guess riding 26 is like shooting film. There's an old school purist satisfaction in it.
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Old 06-26-2014, 03:13 PM
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I agree with Dave #26isdead...

BUT... I think that if you are looking to spend 1k, that it will be tough but I'd look at maybe 26" wheel bikes since they are getting cheap.. nobody wants them due to the 650b/27.5" movement (which I think is legit BTW) for longer travel bikes. SB-66, 575, Stumpy anything Dave says might be good. Remember that it'll be a lot nicer than what you had and who cares if it's a 26" bike.. it'll still work. just don't count on any sort of resale.

For Betasso/Marshal Mesa type stuff I'd look for a hardtail 29er. Reason being 1000 will get you a much nicer hardtail than it will a FS bike and have space to utilize 29" wheels (no suspension). I have never owned a full suspension bike though and a 29er was my first a few years ago so take it with a grain of salt. I want FS bike for stuff like Sourdough/St. Vrain and some of the Downhill type stuff around Switzerland tr. White ranch/heil/hall type stuff is where i am not sure what I want.
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Old 06-26-2014, 03:17 PM
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also, what size are you? Small? Medium? (if you can call that sizing)

Allison has a Small Epic S-Works with a cheaper build kit FS.... and Zach has an SB-66.... Small also.

Both suffered broken frames that got factory replacements so they are fresh frame wise.
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Old 06-26-2014, 03:24 PM
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I got this.... A bicycle should cost $500. Anything beyond that is insane!

I walked over to buy a mtn bike last year and could not believe how much they cost. I wonder if they offer financing because cars don't cost what they are asking.
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Old 06-26-2014, 03:31 PM
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enter dirt bikes. They have motors, VERY advanced suspensions, don't constantly need attention, AWESOME brakes, are updated every year, and well.... you don't have to pedal them. They cost about what a high end Bicycle costs.

I still don't get it..
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Old 06-26-2014, 04:18 PM
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I'm a medium/large. 17-19" range depending on the bike and what I'm doing.

There are no 27.5" bikes out there in the used market. Probably everyone is unloading their 26"ers to upgrade. I've got an 18'"er on the back of my KTM - seems to do just fine...

I dunno. I'm sure I could get a lower end, new 27.5 bike for around what I want to spend, but I don't need to be on the emerging market here with my (lack of) commitment to mtn biking. But it would suck to have a 26" bike in my garage worth nothing in a few years because everyone is chasing the 27.5's.

Maybe I get something cheaper and ride it for a couple years to see where the market goes.
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Old 06-26-2014, 05:08 PM
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get a 26" FS bike used, or a 29'er hardtail used. Plenty of fun can be had on a 26" wheeled bike, they work fine and you can take advantage of the market trend. I think that's what we were saying... In a few years maybe S or E can use it anyways.
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