a Weekend Warrior
Date Reviewed: January 31, 2012
Strengths: Good Price, good average components, great looking Hawaiian island design, good stock tires.
Weaknesses: The rims are very soft and weak, the hubs are non-series shimano ones, and the bike is a little bit hefty. The stem is a little too long for my taste too.
This is for a 2009 Dawgma. I have another Kona but it is hardtail, and also used a Mexican brand called Alubike (hardtail too). The only dual suspension bike I had was a Mongoose. After the mongoose nothing seemed to last forever. It was a great bike, took a lot of punishment and endured like a champ. However, it was a very heavy bike with a very small frame (got it when I was younger). Then went to hardtail for a while.
Bought the Dawgma hoping to repeat the Mongoose experience, and up to now it has! It is a very good looking beast with excellent components for the price.
It came with a Rockshox monarch3.1 rear shock, which is ok, but it can be tuned on the fly with ease to adapt to the terrain, although it bobs a little. The front suspension is a Tora 318, which is a great shock for its value. I continually go through all of its 130 mm of travel, and it just continues begging for more (medium jumps and rocks). Up to now I havent had any problem with air leaking out or something.
The bike came with Maxxis Ignitor tires, which in my opinion are great OEM tires. They are durable so that the back tire is showing little to medium wear (after 6 months). Of course that I use the bike mainly on weekends, sometimes on the middleweek too, but it is also true that I like doing AllMountain and going fast on descents, taking corners and skid on gravel. That reminds me, the Shimano hydraulic brakes it comes with are very good, not the best, but will help you to find spare parts with low cost of maintenance; very responsive.
The only components that suck are the rims and the hubs. The rims are Alex ACE18, and I already bent both of them. Replaced them with Mavic 317 XM in the meantime while I decide for other higher line MAVICs. The hubs are standard non-line Shimano and are ok for trail, but not for all-mountain. The rear one is already showing signs of wear and I think I will need to replace it in a short time. However, it was expected for the money I paid for the bike.Thinking in some MAVICs too.
I hated the pedals. It came with Shimano clipless, which I already replaced with some NukeProof electron ones, but that was for my comfort. I also replaced the stem for a shorter one; this increased handling but changed the way the bike responds... for the good!
The frame is stiff and up to now has taken punishment as you wouldn't imagine. Looks like the 7025 aluminum can take what I have given it and more. In fact, the frame is not that heavy, the things that make the bike heavy are the components (front suspension, tires, and stuff).
Very upgradeable and fun bike! I am now thinking if I will ever replace the frame, no matter how many times I upgrade the components.
However, if you get this bike, get the rims and hubs replaced as soon as you can.
Similar Products Used: Dual Suspension old Mongoose, Kona hardtail.
Bike Setup: Stock, except the rims. 17" frame.
from Colton, Oregon, US
Date Reviewed: February 22, 2011
Strengths: The frame is strong and it has good components. The brakes, crank and rear suspension set up are all reliable. The shock are easily adjustable through out the day.
Weaknesses: My first ride i bent the front wheel. Had it trued bent it again beyond fixing. I had to walk the bike back. The front shocks are great until you over shot a jump. Landed hard enough that i had to pump them back up. Now they get continually softer throughout the day.
I purchased this bike in 2010 and it was a 2009 model, which made it a very good deal. It came down to what I could afford. I use this bike fro downhill and free ride. If you are going to use it for its indented purpose as cross country then this is the ultimate bike. The rear shock can be turned up so that pedaling up a hill is just as easy as a hard tail. And it shifts great. But for downhill and free ride you will need a couple upgrades. Mainly the wheels.
For me this bike is great, the rear shock is loose enough to make DH much smoother, but stiff enough that I can still free ride and jump. The front is the same, enough travel to absorb some bumps but not so much to negatively affect jumping.
Bike Setup: ODI grips, Maxxis Minion DHR and DHF, also new pedals and front wheel.
a Cross Country Rider
from Seattle, WA, USA
Date Reviewed: May 10, 2009
Strengths: Frame, shocks, bike balance, value
Weaknesses: Rims, weight
The Alex rims it comes with suck. They are soft and noodly, had to be trued after every ride. After bending them both on a 4' drop, switched to Kore Durox wheel set. It made a huge difference in the feel of the bike. I weigh 200# and am an aggressive older rider. I ride every hazard up to 18". I've destroyed 3 chains in 1800 demanding miles. The bike is perfect for technical terrain and single diamond down hill. It's a little porky on uphill climbs at roughly 33# as set up. The 22/34 granny gear gets a lot of use. The frame is very stiff and feels solid. The balance is nearly perfect for all aspects of riding. Minor saddle changes are all that's required to get the right tire to bite. With Nevigals, it will climb 20% loose or muddy dirt hills just fine. The Ario 2.2 with lockout is a must for long climbs and is very well balanced with the Tora 318. I felt it was a better shock for my riding than the RP2. I had a little air leakage the first week. Now I check shock pressure every 4-6 weeks. The bike is very easy to set up and make adjustments on the fly during riding. It does logs, jumps, baby heads and roots very well. Loose rock and small washboard translate a little to much vibration. Crown dampening adjustments would be nice on the fork.
This bike does everything I need it to do. It would be perfect if it weighed 25#. Chuck the Alex wheels ASAP.
Local shop has some slightly used Dawgmas if the price is right are they worth buying? What do you guys think is a good price for one of these. I read the rear shock is a bit of a dud due to air leaks.Read More »
I was browsing craiglist and came across this bike for 200 bones. Rear wheel hub needs tightening, needs new brake pads as well, and rear derailer was replaced with a cheapy alivio. Besides those items the bike rode well and all pivot points are tight, is the 200 I paid a good deal, any bad hist ... Read More »
Friend of mine just purchased a new 2008 Kona Dawgma last week. He's currently out of town and won't be picking the bike up until next week when he returns. Question is he's got a set of Mavic 823's with C/L Disc that we were going to swap over from his other ride. Can anyone tell me if the Dawgma c ... Read More »
I recently purchased my first new bike an 09 Dawgma, I really, really like it, except for one issue..... Whenever the fork (rock shox toro) compresses, it squeaks, at first it didnt bug me, but now after a couple real root infested rides, it is driving me nuts.
Can this be solved by some lube i ... Read More »