Raleigh 2001 M50 Hardtail Bike

4.16/5 (19 Reviews)
MSRP : $359.99


Product Description



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Reviews 1 - 15 (19 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by John G a Weekend Warrior from Abilene, Tx

Date Reviewed: January 3, 2006

Strengths:    Strong frame, it's taken a great beating from me over the years. Parents got it for me as a commuter bike for school, but it found the trails. Great beginner bike.

Weaknesses:    Conering could be better, stockseat post is wretched.

Bottom Line:   
Would recommend this bike to any beginner. Shimano components could be better. But bottom line, great beginner bike for the money, good entry level HT.

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Favorite Trail:   Buck Creek

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Price Paid:    $300.00

Purchased At:   Momentum Cycles St. Peters, MO

Similar Products Used:   various other friends bikes

Bike Setup:   stock except for shimano 520's and a Thomson elite on order

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Mike Stout a Cross Country Rider from Shawano, Wisconsin

Date Reviewed: April 14, 2003

Strengths:    Very strong, lasted very long seeing though as i put 3000 miles on it.

Weaknesses:    needs better components, too heavy, needs better front end, and a heck of a lot stronger brakes

Bottom Line:   
good bike for beginers and people just getting into biking, the new 2003 M50 is a great improvment and i would purchase if you are a beginer

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Favorite Trail:   mountain bay

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Price Paid:    $350.00

Purchased At:   Joe Bikelers

Similar Products Used:   M80, M600

Bike Setup:   Psylo fork, xtr disk brakes, xtr wheels, xtr crank, baisically all xtr, michellin wildgripper tires, jagwire cables and housing, carbonfiber seatpost and handlebar, kevlar/titanium seat

Overall Rating:3
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Tom Groleau from Kenosha, WI, USA

Date Reviewed: March 14, 2003

Strengths:    This bike was my plan to get back into more cycling after years of putzing around on my old beat-up road bikes. It's met that need very well. I bought it June 2001 and put 600 miles on it the rest of that year. In 2002 I put another 1300 miles on it. I've made some changes (see Bike Setup) but the stock components are decent components for the price point and I've found that Raleigh has a great frame warranty.

Weaknesses:    Even though most of my riding is commuting on roads or rail-trails, the rear wheel didn't last long under someone my size (6'3", 250lbs). The tallest frame I could get was the XL-22" size and it needs a longer seat post. With post at maximum allowable extension, I have a good riding position, but there's a lot of stress at the joint of the seat tube and the top of the top tube. Mine cracked in February 2003 with just short of 2000 miles on the odometer. However, with a life-time frame warranty, it took just under 3 weeks for me to get it back with a brand-new 2003 frame. I think the new frame feels faster than the old one (or three weeks off the bike did wonders for my legs). I've also got a longer seat post on order.

Bottom Line:   
The bike is a great deal for the price. For someone who wants to "get back into" riding or just wants a reasonably priced commuter, it's a great buy. While I'd certainly like to be able to afford something more "high end", I plan to keep this one around for a long time.

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Favorite Trail:   Elroy-Sparta

Duration Product Used:   2 Years

Purchased At:   Ski & Sports Chalet

Similar Products Used:   1991 Giant Sedonna (it was considered a mountain bike then), several old road sport-tourers.

Bike Setup:   I immediately added bar-ends, water bottle cages, better pedals, and a cateye computer. Since then, the bars, bottom bracket, rear wheel, chain, and rear cassette have been upgraded and I've added a rack and panniers. I also changed to 26x1.5 street tires for my commute.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Mike B. a Weekend Warrior from Van Nuys Ca., USA

Date Reviewed: October 29, 2002

Strengths:    Bomb-proof, trouble free bike, very nimble and capable; everything works as it should

Weaknesses:    frame size is too small; had to replace handlebars; also replaced plastic pedals with alum. ones ( no clip-ons )

Bottom Line:   
This is a follow-up report. I've had the bike just over a year and it's help up fine. I don't do any dropoffs or high speed stuff, but this bike isn't intended for that.
What I do is wheel this thing through every kind of terrain and it just rolls right along. Shallow river crossings, way off-camber, rock embedded embankments, 45 deg. inclines, etc. . . this inexpensive little champ does it all. None of the components has failed me at all. There is a little damage on the #2 chainring of the Acera crankset, but that was from my clumsy shifting technique. I also have a Raliegh c500 with Deore drivetrain and I can say that the Acera stuff actually works better, and seems more durable.
This was the last of the made-in-USA Raleighs and it feels solid and durable. I hose the bike off after every ride and blast the deraileurs with WD40 to displace the H20 and that's all it takes. Even the cheapie elastomer fork is perfectly suited to the overall performance of the bike, and is still glass-smooth.
Just to try the bike out, I took it to Griffith Park and blasted down a fire road that I used to hike years ago. This was the only time I've had the bike really moving, and it ate that up, too! That's lots of fun, but there's where you break things and have to upgrade constantly.
What I want to say is Ralieghs are by far the best value out there. They are very well balanced for what they offer and give you your full dollar's worth. They seem to be the persona-non-grata among the biking world, but if you don't need the very latest amd most expensive gear, a Raliegh will give your money's worth year after year.

Five flamers all around !

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Favorite Trail:   Balboa Lake; L.A. river

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $300.00

Purchased At:   Kelly's bikes

Similar Products Used:   tried other Raleighs, incl. 2002 M600 ( very nice, but cost $800 )

Bike Setup:   RockShox seatpost, riser bars, pedals, puncture-proof tubes AND Green Slime ( Finally ! no more flats ! )

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by John Morgan a Cross Country Rider from College Station, Texas

Date Reviewed: July 6, 2002

Strengths:    Solid frame, solid components. Takes a beating!

Weaknesses:    None yet.

Bottom Line:   
Great bike for the beginner (me) and a great deal all around. This bike's so reliable I'd tell my grandma to get one if she was hardcore...

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Favorite Trail:   None

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $360.00

Similar Products Used:   None.

Bike Setup:   Stock.

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Nate a Weekend Warrior from Fort Collins, Co USA

Date Reviewed: June 3, 2002

Strengths:    Frame, Brakes OK, Shifters OK

Weaknesses:    Acera components-Derailers, pedals

Bottom Line:   
This is a good starter bike and also a great bike to upgrade because the frame is solid. The Acera derailers need to be the first thing to go if you ride very hard. They are loud and slow to change, and fall out of tune quiclky. A better chain also helps for harder riding. The brakes can get loud when used hard. IF poor like me, fix the parts as they break if you ride hard. I have made about 200$ in upgrades, and it is becoming a better bike that can now handle harder riding without and damage. You will not find a better bike for the money, just upgrade as you get better.

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Favorite Trail:   Hewletts Gultch

Duration Product Used:   2 Years

Price Paid:    $250.00

Purchased At:   Recycled Cycles

Similar Products Used:   Various

Bike Setup:   Deore LX Front and Rear derailers, SRAM PC-58 Chain, Softer brake pads, Stronger front rim, stronger rear hub,
Wellington pedals W/clips

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Gabriel Seifert from Stock-town, CA, USA

Date Reviewed: February 17, 2002

Strengths:    Great warranty from Raleigh! It's reasonably light for its price--the frame weighs about 4.5" lbs when stripped.

Weaknesses:    For the dollar, none really.

Bottom Line:   
This is my 3rd review for the M50 and I keep writing about it because I like it so much. For the price this is an excellent entry-level bike. I've upgraded everything I replaced, like the hubs/rims, and find that this bike is suitable for a growing rider.

Raleigh's warranty support is excellent! I brought my cracked frame to Fun Sport, where I bought it, and had a newly framed bike in ONE WEEK! Wow!!

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Favorite Trail:   where ever

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $330.00

Purchased At:   Fun Sport Cycles, Stockton, CA

Similar Products Used:   Similar $300-$400 bikes.

Bike Setup:   (now new) M50 frame, suspension seatpost, AVID disc brakes front and rear, Deore hubs/Sun Rhinolite rims, new riser bar, headlights.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Gabe Seifert a Weekend Warrior from Bellingham, WA, USA

Date Reviewed: December 4, 2001

Strengths:    VALUE, VALUE, VALUE

Great deal for the price! The parts are a good place to start (not XTR, but common the whole bike's less than $400!).


Weaknesses:    Hmmm... I wish I had a 7000-series aluminum frame now. Did damage the stock single wall wheelset. Not enough product rep--the bike shops downplay the product line (not enough kick backs?).

Bottom Line:   
Look, I'm a big dude (6'4" and 250+ lbs) and I haven't killed this bike--that's impressive to me considering the 35+ miles I put on this bike each week.

The frame has a 5 year warranty (along with a year for the parts) and I've been riding the M50 with abandon because I figure the replacements are free. So far no problems other than damaging the original wheelset, so I'd recommend upgrading to double wall wheels right away (your dealer might cut you a deal).

The factory components seem quite good considering the price (it's not XTR, don't expect it to be), so if something breaks just upgrade it later. Basically, it's more bike for the buck than many out there. Use your cash to pay for upgrades, not an advertising/racing overhead.

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Duration Product Used:   3 months

Purchased At:   Fun Sport Bikes (Stockton, CA)

Bike Setup:   I've added a set of headlights, pedal clips, and a Deore disk hub wheelset (I'm going to put on disk brakes, ignore what I said in my previous posting).

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by David a Weekend Warrior from Ft. Worth, TX

Date Reviewed: November 21, 2001

Strengths:    Good componenets for the money.

Weaknesses:    Cheap fork.

Bottom Line:   
This bike makes a great budget xc racer for weekend warriors. I can't break it! I haven't been able to bottom out the fork, even though I weigh 195 lbs. The fork could be more plush though. My only complaint is what is with the springs being located outside the tube and under the rubber boots?

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Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $300.00

Purchased At:   Bikes USA

Similar Products Used:   Trek, Specialized.

Bike Setup:   Stock except for GT seatpost, ControlTech stem, Profile Carbon Fiber bar, Velo Kevlar saddle.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Dan from Nashville, TN, Davidson

Date Reviewed: November 13, 2001

Strengths:    nice shifting, great frame, nice components for the $$$

Weaknesses:    bad pedals, bit heavy, tires (not very good for commuting)

Bottom Line:   
I'm a college student, and I think every college student who wants to get cross-campus Fast should consider getting the M50. I was heavily thinking about getting the Specialized A1 FS, before I checked out the M50. The M50 has better parts than the specialized. Its a great ride, and bit heavier than I would like for an aluminum frame. A lot of ride for the buck.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $320.00

Similar Products Used:   Specialized A1 FS


Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Gabriel Seifert a Weekend Warrior from Bellingham, WA, USA

Date Reviewed: November 4, 2001

Strengths:    Great deal for the money!! For the price, this has been a great bike so far. I ride about 35 miles a week between commuting and weekend riding (same bike, diferent tires) and have really come to like it. It's nothing fancy, so bike snobs might not be impressed. But, for semi-normal people, this bike's worth looking into. The on-the-fly adjustable forks are sweet. The frame on the M50 is the same as all Raleighs higher end hardtails, so it's an easy way to get into a decent framed bike that's not going to be a waste of cas to upgrade later.

Weaknesses:    It comes with these cheesy plastic peddals--bogus. Replaced them straight away. What's up with calling the disk-compatible setup a "feature"? Who puts disks on a sub-$400 bike?

Bottom Line:   
Totally worth checking into if your looking for a good quality mountain bike for less than $400. I think that Raleigh seems to be running a "best bike for the buck" campaign or something. Check it out against similar quality bikes and bet you'll be surprised with what you get.

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Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Purchased At:   Fun Sport Bikes

Similar Products Used:   Diamond Back, Trek

Bike Setup:   Stock+normal add-ons (rack, bullbars, underseat bag, etc.).

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by CJ a Cross Country Rider from Highland Il, USA

Date Reviewed: August 22, 2001

Strengths:    Awsome Frame
ok fork ( too soft)
brakes when not squiling something feirce


Weaknesses:    Front derailler hits
weak rims


Bottom Line:   
I took this bike to Winter Park and Snow Mtn Ranch Colorado for a week and had a blast, didnt doubt it once on some hairy dhs thou a little tiring on long long Climbs (needs a bigger cog). Even thou my dealer told me not to me and a friend where jumping this huge dirt jump where one trail was higher than the other and they crossed. I took it to fast totally cleared the slop on the back side and slid on right side pretty hard bent the rim and its in the shop as we speak. Jumping and drop offs over 3ft is totally discouraged w/ a stock set up on this bike (weak weak rims). For a begginer thou this bike is a choice and is great for a lot city riding wich i mostly do 30+ miles a week.

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Favorite Trail:   All the trails at Winter Park and Snow MTN Ranch CO

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $351.00

Purchased At:   Pedel Shop

Similar Products Used:   Trek 800

Bike Setup:   Stock

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Michael Burian a Weekend Warrior from Van Nuys, Cal. USA

Date Reviewed: August 16, 2001

Strengths:    Light, solid frame, accurate drivetrain, smooth riding, excellent value for money

Weaknesses:    Doesn't quite fit exactly, rear brake seems to be rubbing,

Bottom Line:   
A very good bike for the money. I took it through so overgrown trails right after I got it and got twigs and weeds stuck in the derailures and the thing just kept rolling along. The aluminum frame alone seems worth the $279 I paid for the whole bike. The stock stem was way too low for me, so I'm trying out various combinations of bars and stems. The bike is very well made and seems like it will last for years. I was taking it places that would have destroyed other bikes I've owned. I may switch to easier rolling tires for better road riding, but I might also get a C500 for the street and just thrash this one off road.
Lots of fun ! ! !
Anyone who wants a quality mountain bike should look at this one. They are usually discounted and Raleigh is a well established, world-wide company. You won't find a better value for the dough !

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Balboa Park

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $279.00

Purchased At:   Kelly's Bikes

Similar Products Used:   none

Bike Setup:   high rise stem and handlebars

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Drew a Cross Country Rider from Amarillo TX

Date Reviewed: August 11, 2001

Strengths:    Super nice and sturdy frame, I think the frame is worth most of what I paid. The frame I think will last me a long time.

Weaknesses:    Unajustable suspension with low travel, cheap tires.

Bottom Line:   
I know that everyone says this, but this bike really is a wonderful bike for the money. Good luck trying to find a bike in the same price range that is 8 speed. The frame is great and I really don't think that I will ever get rid of it. I am probably going to get some new parts for the drive train and maybe some new wheels, but thats just because I am getting pretty serious about mtbing. If you are not riding more than once a week or so, most of these upgrades probably aren't neccessary. Bottom line is that this bike is a great deal and preforms well. I hope you enjoy it as much as I have.

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Favorite Trail:   GSL at Palo Duro Canyon

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $260.00

Purchased At:   Bike Korner (local)

Similar Products Used:   Gary Fisher Mamba

Bike Setup:   Everything is stock except for a Manitou SX-R fork, kore gass clipless pedals, and some Panaracer Pro XC tires.

Overall Rating:3
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Jimmy a Weekend Warrior from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA

Date Reviewed: July 29, 2001

Strengths:    Beefy Aluminum Frame; Paint Job; price

Weaknesses:    Fork bottoms out easily, and no adjustments; mediocre components overall

Bottom Line:   
Exept for the frame, the RALEIGH M50 is no mountain bike, but they really don't claim it to be one. This bike is the top one in their "Mountain Trail" series, and is more suited for nature trails and cobblestone streets than for serious mtb'n. To date, I have spent an additional $370 (good deals too) on upgrades with more to come. This brings the total costs of my bike to over $700, but who's complaining? I like what this bike is becoming! The bottom line is: If your serious about this sport, I recommend you go ahead and spend at least a grand up front on a real mountain bike rather than upgrading a good frame.

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Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $340.00

Purchased At:   The Bicycle Source - Baton Rouge, LA

Similar Products Used:   none

Bike Setup:   Upgrades: ROCK SHOX JUDY SL FORK; ROCK SHOX SEAT POST; SHIMANO XT BOTTOM BRACKET; TIME ATAC ALIUM PEDALS; AVENIR "MANLY" SADDLE

Reviews 1 - 15 (19 Reviews Total) | Next 15

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