Cannondale F500 2002 Hardtail

4.53/5 (17 Reviews)
MSRP : $1048.99


Product Description



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Reviews 1 - 15 (17 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:3
Submitted by WipeOut a Cross Country Rider from Belgium

Date Reviewed: September 13, 2004

Strengths:    The frames made by Cannondale are simply unmatched. I have met few to no people who actually considered making their new bike anything else than a Cannondale after they had one before. The headshock with lockout suits me fine, it is light and easy to maintain. Although I always had the feeling it was a bit too soft for my taste (I felt it lost air, even when I had adjusted it, the dealers I gave it to said there was nothing wrong with it). It is incredibly light and agile due, unmatched for that prise. But the frame and fork have been praised enough (sturdyness, looks, stiffness). Mine came with deore discbrakes right away, which were certainly not bad to start with.

Weaknesses:    I disliked the wheels, and replaced them right away. The chain did not give me any problems I have to say, and mine came with deore discbrakes right away. Of course the saddle needed replacement, as does any standard saddle I guess.

Bottom Line:   
Cannondale will always be my prefered brand for a MTB, fully, or hardtail. I've ridden some very nice trek bikes, Principia, Cube etc. None of them can match the feeling a Cannondale gives. It is hard as hell, light, and textremely appealing to the eye.

In europe they are on the expensive side though, but well worth it in my opinion. That is why my value rating is a bit low, for US residents, this would be excellent I assume.

This bike is the perfect platform for the moderately experienced MTB fanatic. The frame is worth any upgrade on the bike, simply Cannondale.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Anything demanding

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $1400.00

Purchased At:   Bikestore in Holland

Similar Products Used:   Trek

Bike Setup:   In the end I rode completely XT, excluding the disc brakes. The frame is well worth any upgrade as high as XT. I have bought an F800 SL now, which came with Magura hydraulic discs, otherwise I would have put some Mag's or XT's on my f500. Ritchey Bar ends, handle bar, saddle pin, Selle Italia saddle of course.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Zack Erickson a Cross Country Rider from Harvard, MA, USA

Date Reviewed: June 22, 2004

Strengths:    I love the Lockout, really helps for going up hills. Also the frame is superlight, the new Furio and Optimo are very nice but not that noticibly different.

Weaknesses:    The tires suck, no grip on anything, get some new ones (I chose Michlin Hot S). The chain also kinda sucks, in the first 2 days it came off 3 times. Brakes are ok but i replaced them with Discs.

Bottom Line:   
This bike kicks ass, but really any cannondale with a headshock or lefty and a light frame does. There is no other bike librand like it.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Shaker hill/Delany park

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $750.00

Purchased At:   Gear Works

Similar Products Used:   Any cannondale with a light frame and headshock

Bike Setup:   Stock with Some ajustments - Shimano LX cranks, New Michlin Hot S tires, and front and rear Avid 8" Discs.

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by manor dweller a Cross Country Rider from santa cruz,ca

Date Reviewed: September 22, 2003

Strengths:    frame - fork lock out - headshock - future disc brake option - made in us -

Weaknesses:    tires - some components - wheels(?) - small amount of play when fork is locked out(design flaw?,haven't looked into it)

Bottom Line:   
stiff sturdy frame, unlikely to break. frame feels light, quick, (JM, why not post frame/fork weights etc.), decent finish, decals aren't coming off - sus fork w/ easy to use lockout (essential for lengthy climbs on & off road), satisfied w/ headshock, great for general xc riding, stiff, tracks well, unlike other forks in the market - kinda like that it's made in us - tires wore quickly,garbage - why a flat bar? - wheels have held up (175lbs) so far - had low budget shimano cranks/bb/chain - i guess most of my $ went towards the frame/fork - components are functional but upgrades will probably need to happen >>> great for entry level cross country or avid cyclist who wants a mid range multi purpose hardtail <<<

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   wilder

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $950.00

Purchased At:   northampton bicycles,ma

Bike Setup:   stock except upgraded to lx spline cranks/bb - coda(ugh)riser bar - sram 90 chain - rockshox sus post - clipless pedals - michelin comp - intended for cc $ commuting w/slicks

Overall Rating:3
Value Rating:2
Submitted by XC Guru a Cross Country Rider from NJ, USA

Date Reviewed: May 12, 2003

Strengths:    1. Very nice and light frame worth upgrading.
2. XT derailleur is nice on the rear.
3. The weight is OK. 26lbs.
4. Lockout on shock is nice.


Weaknesses:    1. Cheap and heavy crank. I'm pretty sure its a low-end Alivo.
2. Cheap pedals for a bike at this price. Clipless is the way to go.
3. Cheap components: Deore hubs and shifters, Cannondale crap stems and bars, etc.
4. Stock Hutchinson Mosquito tires are POS's!!!!! Gone, less than a month! Read my review about those.
5. I don't know about that Headshok. It doesn't seem very plush to me. I might upgrade to a Marzocchi or Fox.
6. Should come with a disc ready wheelset or with just disc brakes.


Bottom Line:   
It is not the best value but its OK. At this price, the bike should have a full XT draintrain in my opinion at a MSRP $1000. It should also have a disc ready wheelset or just come with some kind of disc brake. However, the frame is definately worth doing upgrades on. It is a good decent bike to build onto with much higher end components. I only got it cuz I bought last year's 2002 model at a discounted price. If you want a better value look elsewhere.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Purchased At:   $875

Similar Products Used:   Trek, Specialized, Giant, Jamis

Bike Setup:   C-dale F500 w/ XT stuff

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Dennis a Racer from Kiev, Ukraine

Date Reviewed: November 5, 2002

Strengths:    + FRAME!!!!!!!! increadibly stiff and strong, and light compared to my C'dale CAAD 2.
+ fork is nice as well, i like the lochout
+ appearance
+ NAME!
+ weight is Ok - 12kgs, though not impressive. what is remarkable however, that the claimed and actual wight are exactly the same, while other manufacturers always lie!
+ components are rather cheep but well selected, they work fine with each other.
+ finetuned from the shop, and requres very little maintenance.


Weaknesses:    - Cheep components (esp. the crank and pedals) for such a frame & fork, though work all right anyway
- tires are sucks, exchanged them with Mischeline in a week.
- chain was 2 links short, i had to add those 2.
- head tube diameter is oversized, i'm not sure if non headshok fork can be mounted on it.


Bottom Line:   
wonna get an increadible hardtail frame+fork - there they are. simply the best! hell strong & stiff! light! name!EVERYTHING!
don't know why some buddies don't like headshok, i adore it, it's expecially applicable if you prefere racing rather than hits, and you use v-brakes. no disonance in the fork shock legs whatsoever (there's only one), as for example in my Bomber MXC-ECC (it's Marzocchi only weekness). also headshok is very light according to the manual, and never bottomed, though not so impressive in appearence as Marzocchi.
the bike possesses some very very very good candling quailities, it can turn on a dime, it easily accelerates, it's quick, it makes you feel very confident. the brakes however should be stronger, though ok for a racer.

the stuff is not worthy descripting, it's not cool but all right for a mediocre rider. after all, as i already said you pay for the frame and fork, and then, if desire, you can upgrade the rest stuff over time.

absolutely 5 chills for the performance!!!!!!!
but no more than 4 for the price. cannondale is rather an expensive toy in Europe.

therefore, buy it if you can offord one and your riding style fits to the abovestated description.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   all of 'em

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $1400.00

Purchased At:   VeloMir, Moscow, Russia

Similar Products Used:   cannondale CAAD2,killer v900

Bike Setup:   stuff: super fatty DL, mavic (!) 139, deore hubs, some lx, xt, deore V-brakes, m440 crank! stupid pedals!

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by STONER a Weekend Warrior from GRAND RAPIDS

Date Reviewed: September 3, 2002

Strengths:    THE NAME, THE FRAME, BOTH STIFF AS HELL, GREAT ON CLIMBS, LOVE THE LOCKOUT, CONTINENTAL EXPLORER PRO'S WERE INCLUDED (DEFINITE UPGRADE) FAST AS YOU KNOW WHAT AND CORNERS LIKE ITS ON RAILS!!

Weaknesses:    HEADSHOCK MAINTENANCE (BUT NO BIGGIE THANKS TO THE GUYS AT ALGER SCHWINN !!)

Bottom Line:   
THE BOTTOM LINE: BUY THIS BIKE, WORK, EARN SOME MONEY, SAVE SOME MONEY, RIDE HARD, WORK, EARN SOME MONEY, SAVE SOME MONEY, RIDE IT HARD, TALK TO THE SIGNIFICANT OTHER FOR 2 TO 15 MINUTES, RIDE IT HARD, UPGRADE SOME PARTS, WORK, OH YEAH! HAVE A BEER!, WORK, EARN SOME MONEY, UPGRADE, SCREW THE WORK, CHARGE IT, THIS BIKE GIVES YOU EVERYTHING YOU WANT FOR UNDER $1000 DUCKETS, CHASE VISA CREDIT CARD WILL GIVE ANYONE WHO BREATHES A $5000 CREDIT LIMIT, CHARGE IT, PAY FOR IT LATER, THEY WILL NEVER FIND YOU OR TAKE YOUR BIKE AWAY.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   ANYTHING

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $959.00

Purchased At:   ALGER SCHWINN

Similar Products Used:   UNIVEGA ALPINA, TREK, HUFFY, SCHWINN, HONDA, KAWASAKI, BEEMER, AUDI, PORSCHE, BUG, EXPLORER, NAVIGATOR. THE 'DALE BLEW THEM ALL AWAY!!!

Bike Setup:   MOUNTAIN MIX WAS GREAT OUT OF THE BOX. THEY PUT THE RIGHT COMPONENTS WHERE YOU NEEDED THEM WHICH ALLOWS YOU TO TEAR THEM UP AND REPLACE THEM AFTER THEY HAVE WORN OUT RATHER THAN BEFORE YOU BREAK IT IN. LOVED THE BRAKES, ADDED SOME EGG BEATERS ( THE STRAPS DID NOTHING FOR MY IMAGE!) LUCKILY MY TIRES WERE UPGRADED TO THE CONTINENTAL EXPLORER PROS (AWESOME TIRES!) I WILL HAVE A LOT OF FUN REPLACING THE PARTS AS THEY WEAR, AND OH YEAH THIS BIKE DOES TAKE A BEATING; 14 DISMOUNTS THIS SUMMER AND EVERYTHING IS STILL IN ORDER.

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:3
Submitted by David Hasselhauf a Racer from Fairfax

Date Reviewed: August 28, 2002

Strengths:    Great Frame! lockout on fork is great for climbs. I ditched this bike on a crash and watched it bounce down a hill for 30 seconds. Picked it up and didn't even have to adjust anything. Very sturdy!

Weaknesses:    Had to replace chain. Replaced rear tire. Tread had worn down in rear. That plastic disk on the rear wheel broke off during the afore mentioned crash.

Bottom Line:   
Frame is great, components are superb, but should come with better tires and a decent chain.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   pipeline

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $950.00

Purchased At:   Spokes Etc

Similar Products Used:   95 Cannondale f700

Bike Setup:   Replaced pedals with Time ATAC clipless.

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by KillerFatty a Weekend Warrior from Oakhurst, NJ, USA

Date Reviewed: June 13, 2002

Strengths:    Lockout made uphills a pleasure and downhills smoother...
V brakes stopped my bike no prob... What do I need Hydraulic brakes for it's not my mom's killer SUV...


Weaknesses:    None.

Bottom Line:   
The bike came in at night, so I couldn't ride(bumming). Got up in the early AM and lit a fatty. I wanted to give the bike a proper intro to my world, so I rode for a solid hour(without stopping) on a technical single track. The bad news is I hurled and I was bummed because their were a couple of betties at the trail head.
The good news is that the bike handled great. The V brakes stopped the bike without a problem. This dude I bike in a brandy, so he dissed the v-sters. The lockout was killer, except I kept spacing and couldn't remember to lock in or out(Fatty Factor)... The saddle felt like I was getting a cavity search... No clipless peddles for this dude, those shows would totally bum me out man...

Buy this bike if you ride hard, but don't have major fundage.

I gave it four chilis, cause I hurled in fronta the betties.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $950.00

Purchased At:   Peddler

Similar Products Used:   IronHorseSaltLicker

Bike Setup:   Stock is solid...

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by The Locust from Rosamond, CA

Date Reviewed: June 11, 2002

Strengths:    - Headshok front suspension. Lockout is a superior idea
- Love the jumbo frame size (I'm 6'4")
- Great components. Shifts and brakes perfectly


Weaknesses:    - Broke the left-side bottom bracket lock ring. Cheap plastic
- Replaced goopy chain with SRAM PC 69 which is an outstanding chain
- Rear hub slightly bent/wobbles from the factory, but seems to work okay
- Kind of a drag that you need to purchase a special pump to accurately set the Headshok air pressure. Lack of owner Headshok servicing a big weakness
- Above all else, replace the Hutchison Mosquito tires. In over 30 years of riding, these are by far the worst tires I've ever used.


Bottom Line:   
This' an update to my earlier post. Still an excellent bike, but a few glitches. The crappy Hutchison tires would not allow me to check my speed on a single-track downhill recently & I crashed hard. For now I'm using Nashbar's $7.99 (Kenda) tires & they are generations better than the Hutchisons.

The beautiful Cannondale frame & warranty, superior fork, and great components (for the most part) make it well worth it. With a few minor mods, I've been completely satisfied with this bike.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Salmon Falls Road

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Purchased At:   REI

Similar Products Used:   Many, including Cannondale, Diamondback, etc

Bike Setup:   Stock, except new tires, a different stem to suit me, SRAM chain

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Sam Z a Weekend Warrior from Davis, CA, USA

Date Reviewed: June 9, 2002

Strengths:    Super fatty DL headshock has lockout, great for street riding. Bike is relatively light (26 lb), excellent climber. Infinitely adjustable shock, and great cornering.

Weaknesses:    cheap V-brakes, handle bars and chain.

Bottom Line:   
I use this bike for mostly street riding to and from the university, and the lockout is great when you want to accelerate past traffic. (with specialized nimbus ex, this bike is faaaast). Takes a beating on curbs, potholes, with not problems yet.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $839.00

Purchased At:   Wheelworks

Similar Products Used:   GT avalanche 1.0, Gary Fisher Hoo Koo E Koo

Bike Setup:   Medium frame, Specialized Nimbus EX slicks, and rockworkz SPD clipless.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Dvae Hall a Weekend Warrior from Madison, Al, USA

Date Reviewed: May 20, 2002

Strengths:    Solid frame, good component set.

Weaknesses:    pedals, chain. replaced pedals with clipless, bent chain at 100 miles.

Bottom Line:   
Been riding this bike for 6 months, 500 miles. Bent the chain at 100 miles, otherwise no porblems. very nice ride, handles well. shimano shifters are smooth as silk. tires are a bit soft, since i ride half the time on pavement. swapped the mosquitos for a less knobby, harder compound.
I love this bike!

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Ocoee Whitewater Center

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Purchased At:   HiltonHonors hotel points

Bike Setup:   Stock, except for clipless pedals

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by travis norton a Weekend Warrior from tennessee

Date Reviewed: May 8, 2002

Strengths:    toughest frame in the world, great tires and rims, bone stock and its ready for vietnam

Weaknesses:    poor grips, weak chain

Bottom Line:   
unreal bike for not having rear susp., i go around 275lbs. and never had any trouble whats so ever other than a poor fact. chain breaking, smooth opperation and landing

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Price Paid:    $599.00

Purchased At:   mtn. sports limited

Similar Products Used:   never

Bike Setup:   large frame, sun rims, irc mythos xc tires, shim. stx gears

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Darryl Duncan a Cross Country Rider from Cold Lake, Alberta, Canada

Date Reviewed: May 4, 2002

Strengths:    That C'dale frame!! Stiff as hell. I weigh in at 240 lbs, and there is no flex at all. And of course being aluminum, light as well. Took the bike into the mountains (Jasper, Canada) after owning it one week. Lumps, bumps, stumps, babyheads. It took it all, and asked for more.

Weaknesses:    No lockout on the Headshok. Makes hill climbs a bit harder, but I've adapted to it. Swapped the pedals to full cage Shimano's right at the shop.

Bottom Line:   
The right bike for the right money. The guys at Revolution Cycle In Edmonton, Alberta, Canada are the greatest!!! They know my riding habits and were able to fit mke with the right bike without overselling me for what I actually need. It flies cross country, and climbs like a billy goat.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Anything short of a cliff.

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Purchased At:   900

Similar Products Used:   Kona, Specialized, Norco

Bike Setup:   Shimano pedals, Formula B4 front disc, Conti rubber. Soon to be upgraded to full XT.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Dan a Cross Country Rider from US military, Kuwait

Date Reviewed: March 30, 2002

Strengths:    My bike is the 2001 model, but is substantially similar to the 2002. I have been impressed with the ride, firm and sharp with the rather narrow (2") tires. I prefer the Headshock to the standard suspension fork on my old bike, due to its faster rebound. The framework is clearly superior, and it is truly a individually produced bicycle.

Weaknesses:    The toe clips are rather small for size 12 tennis shoes, but might be more compatible with dedicated cycling shoes. The saddle is rather narrow for my larger build.

Bottom Line:   
I have been impressed with this bicycle, and the Cannondale dealer where I purchased it in Kuwait City. If you ever end up in Kuwait, I recommend you stop by SVG.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   the desert

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $848.00

Purchased At:   Silicon Valley Group-Kuwait City

Similar Products Used:   My former bike is a GT Outpost Trail, but is hardly similar.

Bike Setup:   Stock

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by sebastian vasquez a Cross Country Rider from La Paz,Bolivia

Date Reviewed: March 16, 2002

Strengths:    the bike fork is very soft,it climbs like hell, is confortable for the rider and it has an incredible agility,great components,exept for the pedals, and also has a great frame

Weaknesses:    none, exept for the pedals

Bottom Line:   
one of the great thins about cannondale bikes is that all of them have a lifetime waranty for the frame

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   El choro

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $1300.00

Purchased At:   Nosiglia sport

Similar Products Used:   trek 8000,raleight m800

Bike Setup:   bla bla bla

Reviews 1 - 15 (17 Reviews Total) | Next 15

Review Options:  Sorted by Latest Review | Sort by Best Rating


Higher Gear ratio on F500

I'm trying to increase the gear ratio on the largest chain ring of my Cannondale F500 (Yr: mid 2000's). The current chain ring that I'm trying to replace is a 42T[ATTACH=CONFIG]815285[/ATTACH]. I'd like to replace it with a 48T such as this similar looking chain ring: [URL="http://www.treefortbike ... Read More »

Front end work - Cannondale F500

Having trouble re-installing fork on an F500. Tough to get it back in with the lower bearing stuck on steerer tube. All stuff I have found online say to 'tap it back in' but it will not get past the lower cup. I have a monster headset press, and pressed in the upper easily enough, and coul ... Read More »

F500 Fork Question

Having trouble re-installing fork on an F500. Tough to get it back in with the lower bearing stuck on steerer tube. All stuff I have found online say to 'tap it back in' but it will not get past the lower cup. I have a monster headset press, and pressed in the upper easily enough, and coul ... Read More »

1998 Cannondale F500 front shock

I want to upgrade my headshock for my 1998 cannondale f500, does anyone have recommendations for XC riding that would fit the canondale f500?Read More »

1997 F500

Was wondering... I am going to sell my 1997 Cannondale F500. Size is Large and paint is Yellow with black lettering. It is in pretty good shap for its age and still an eye catcher. All of the components are essentially original. This has been my commuting bike for 6 years and has served me welI- ... Read More »

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