Cannondale F600 2002 Hardtail

4.56/5 (18 Reviews)
MSRP : $1323.99


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Reviews 1 - 15 (18 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Ben a Weekend Warrior from Clovis, NM USA

Date Reviewed: August 18, 2005

Strengths:    2005 has great looks, solid components, disc breaks are great, head shock on/off switch is really handy, and the gearing is great for the "I want to ride to work" days, and this bike is super light, but smooth!

Weaknesses:    Stock saddle isn't the best, tires seemed a little cheesy for a $1000 bike.

Bottom Line:   
I've had the bike for about 5 weeks (150 miles, mostly road and moderate trails with the street tires on right now), and it's everything I hoped for and more. The gearing is really versatile, especially for the flatter but very breezy 14 miles to/from work. The Head Shock is awesome... If you're riding on the road, and come get into a pothole mine field or you have to take an evasive turn to rougher terrain, it takes about a half second to turn the shock on and your a full-up mountain bike again. My wife and I actually bought the same bike-hers is blue, and mine is the silver riveted look a la WWII P-51-and we both really like them. Disc breaks on bikes are finally where they need to be for reliability and they stop me very quickly. My wife is 6'0" and I'm 6'3" and 225lbs, and the Cannondale frames are superior as far as looks, proportions and stiffness are concerned in the L/XL frame sizes, compared to every other bike we considered (Specialized/Trek mostly). Also, the bike just feels solid. I'm not a small dude, but I don't have to think about it twice if I want to get the bike off the ground when we're tearing around the trails or across the pavement. Taller people should consider the Cannondale frames if for no other reason than looks, but they also know what they're doing in Pennsylvania when it comes to fabricating aluminum frames. Buy this bike if you want to get a versatile, strong, great-looking ride and you want to have the off-the-shelf racing capability-this bike can move! Don't buy this bike if you don't plan on riding hard... it begs to be used for what is was designed.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $1000.00

Purchased At:   Plano, TX

Similar Products Used:   Test road/borrowed a few late 90s Cannondales over the past five years, and a Specialized Full Suspension, but I've only owned road bikes.

Bike Setup:   I put some street tires on it until I know I'll spend some solid time off the pavement, new Specialized saddle, pedals w/ toe clips so I can keep my normal shoes on.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by litor peruit a Racer from detroit , michigan , united states

Date Reviewed: September 26, 2003

Strengths:    great climber, handles corners great, super fatty shok takes almost anything, avid brakes stop very smooth, good high speed control and stability down hill.

Weaknesses:    seat is not the best , probably need to change that, avid brake pads needed to be changed after 1 season. did not come with touch up paint

Bottom Line:   
I started racing with bike this summer, the bike is almost stock except for new brake pads and tires , I replaced the stock Hutchinson Mosquito, 26 x 2.0 factory tires with michelin wild grippers . The stock tires were horrible when racing in the rain. Since racing I have also had to replace the bottom bracket, went with a lx for a little more money. The original brake pads wore out pretty fast but I did ride the bike almost every day either training or racing and the course I do is alot of climbing then fast downhills that require alot of braking for corners. The bottom bolt to fasten a air pump under the big tube for the frame is stuck in there or stripped. I doubt I will even bother fixing it. So far the bike has held up pretty good , I have taken it over very rough terrain and have taken very bad spills and the bike has held up well , shifting is fast and climbing up hills when your tired , the lock out feature on the shok is right there to help you. i can't get over the differance the super shok makes when going down hill compared to my old f400 , you can scream down a hill with this bike. the paint job on this bike is even pretty nice with stickers under the clearcoat , overall I would Definitely recomend this bike to anyone.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   all of them

Duration Product Used:   2 Years

Price Paid:    $800.00

Purchased At:   all sports

Similar Products Used:   cannondale f400

Bike Setup:   caad 4 frame, headshok super fattty DL,FD shimano LX, RD shimano XT


Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by joe a Racer from monroe, WA. united states

Date Reviewed: May 26, 2003

Strengths:    rims, frame, headshok, components, disk brakes kick ass,

Weaknesses:    the seat sucks, tires dont grip anything wet!

Bottom Line:   
this bike is rock solid and can tackle everything on any trail. WOuld recomend changing the seat and tires....go with disc....some people say that there is no need for disk but it is SO much better than crap v-brakes. u can control brake levers with ONE finger! Bike climbs like a mountain goat on crack. BUY THIS BIKE if your a serious mountain biker!

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   saint edwards

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $1000.00

Purchased At:   bike shop

Similar Products Used:   kona......high end bikes ....dunnon names

Bike Setup:   everything stock....plan on changing the seat and tires

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Andy a Cross Country Rider from Laguna Beach, CA, US

Date Reviewed: April 2, 2003

Strengths:    This bike is fantastic on both climbs and downhills. The lockout feature is great on climbs and switching over is simple.

Weaknesses:    The suspension tends to be a little stiff after switching over the lockout feature.

Front and rear derailleurs are a little off when shifting during climbs.


Bottom Line:   
Can't beat the Cannondale frame or headshok, they're both worth the money. Great components for an immediate level hardtail bike. It's a great ride.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   The Meadows

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $850.00

Purchased At:   Supergo

Similar Products Used:   GT Backwoods


Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Ahmed Ali a Cross Country Rider from Couva, Trinidad, W.I.

Date Reviewed: December 19, 2002

Strengths:    Nice features i.e. clipless pedals, disc brakes with mavics, adjustable super fatty shock and light weight frame.

Weaknesses:    None yet. Still getting accustom to the frame geometry, would have liked a downhill handle bar. This is my first ride with clipless so I'm getting accustom to it.

Bottom Line:   
It's a nice upgrade from what I rode before i.e. a 97 Gary Fisher Tassajara. I didn't plan this spend this much on a bike (I'm in Trinidad where the exchange rate is 6 to l so I paid $TT6000) but I don't regret because of the strength and weight of the frame not to mention to nice features the bike came with. The local dealer convince me that he had competitive prices and in fact he did. Besides that this baby was made to last with the shimano lx and xt parts. Going to be transformed into a weekend warrior this holiday season.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Sandy Hill

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $1000.00

Purchased At:   MotorCycle Etc

Similar Products Used:   Gary Fisher Tassajara, Diamondback Topanga

Bike Setup:   Caad 4 frame with avid disc brakes on mavic rims. Thompson saddle pole, easton XC50 handle bar, shimano spd clipless.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Jason Lee a Weekend Warrior from Baltimore, MD

Date Reviewed: December 18, 2002

Bottom Line:   
Just an addendum to my review below.
Obviously, the F600 DOES NOT come stock with the xtr stuff I have listed. I went slightly mad after I got the stock 600 and I swapped out just about everything.
Please! No more inquiries about where I got my "stock" 600. Just chalk it up to that Evil Duo, VISA and MASTERCARD.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   2 Years


Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Jason a Weekend Warrior from Balrtimore, MD

Date Reviewed: October 21, 2002

Strengths:    light, very stiff frame, nice mix of stock components(for the most part) Headshock tracks so incredibly true on the trail, it is a confidence-booster.
Hard to beat Avid discs for stopping power, value and easy service.
I am appreciating the Continental Explorers for what they do in slightly messy conditions.


Weaknesses:    Not too crazy about the seat...flares out too abruptly.

Bottom Line:   
I had the opportunity to get either the F2000 CAAD 5 frameset and built it up or the F600 stock bike.
I'm still not too sure about whether the seatstays on the CAAD 5 will prove durable enough for a guy my size. (Budweiser anyone?)
I do know that I air, happier that I have the wishbone stays below me.
This bike is a climber! I have a Jekyll for the rough stuff but this little baby is reminding me why hardtails are still around. Light, stiff and RACEABLE! out-of-the-box. A great choice for anyone who wants a bike that can take most anything and still leave some money for the after-ride sushi.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Avalon, Gambrill

Duration Product Used:   2 Years

Price Paid:    $831.00

Purchased At:   online

Similar Products Used:   2001 F600 disc

Bike Setup:   EC70 bar, XTR cranks, derailleur, Time ATAC, Flite Gel TI, Cane Creek bar ends(Get them!!!), XT shifters, XT cassette, Velocity wheelset with EDCO hubs(jury still out on these...) Mich. CompS lite

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Bill Leonard a Weekend Warrior from Holmdel, NJ USA

Date Reviewed: October 19, 2002

Strengths:    (see 2 other posts of mine)

Weaknesses:    (see 2 other posts of mine)

Bottom Line:   
On-going update: 1. I no longer have the chain-skipping problem (it happens once in a while but not often). 2. My friend, who bought the 2002 F600 model, had to get a new rim -- with the hard riding and, probably, his weight, he bent the rim of the back wheel. My other friend who has the 2002 F600 is much lighter and his rims are ok. He did some research and saw that the 2002 F600 comes with Mavic 223 rims which were reviewed negatively for being weak. The good news is that the 2003 F600 (the one I have) comes with better rims.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Hartshorne

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $1100.00

Purchased At:   Peddler

Similar Products Used:   12-year-old Mongoose

Bike Setup:   Stock (except I had the clipless pedals replaced with ones that use toe clips)

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Bill Leonard a Weekend Warrior from Holmdel, NJ, USA

Date Reviewed: September 26, 2002

Strengths:    Frame, disc brakes

Weaknesses:    Minor rust in simple-to-replace bolts; I have an unresolved issue with sporadic chain skipping for the bigger gears (but it looks like it may be resolved: see review)

Bottom Line:   
I've received a couple of emails asking for some additional information on how my friends and I like our bikes. I have a 2003 F600; my friends have the 2002 version. I'm posting this as an update:

I like the bike. My 2 friends and I ride pretty hard and the frame and wheel rims have had no damage or problems. We took the bikes to Mt Snow in Vermont recently and they held up well there. We've had some problems (which I outline below) but nothing that would cause us to not recommend this bike. Although it looks like the problems outweigh the strong points, the truth is that I wanted to make sure that I detailed everything that has happened to the bike.

As far as what other bikes we'd consider, we thought about full suspension bikes. We noticed that most of the others at Mt Snow had full suspension bikes and we met a bike salesperson in the woods where we normally ride and he said that the full suspensions are better in terms of a better downhill ride. But he also said very good things about our bikes (citing frame geometry and other points that went over my head).

Strong points:
1. We took the bikes to Mt Snow in Vermont when it was rainy. My 2 friends felt that if they didn't have the disc brakes, they would not have considered going.
2. I never worry about any damage that's going to occur to my bike by whatever obstacle I encounter. The frame and tires have held up beautifully. I have damaged small components but the major concerns are not there.
3. I feel like I have good control with this bike (but I'm comparing this to an older mountain bike I borrowed from a friend).

Neutral Points:
1. None of us use the lock-out feature. We tried it a couple of times but we don't find it necessary. Also, my 2 friends don't like using it because they used to forget to put it back to suspension mode and they'd get a rough ride going downhill.

Damage We've Done:
1. I took 3 relatively hard falls just after I wrote the first review (because I didn't learn some basic skills) and one of the falls resulted in the slight bending of both the rear brake disc rotor and the middle chain ring. At first I was annoyed but I watched the bike mechanics and I calmed down -- the bike is so 'componentized' that I could replace both parts for a small amount of money if I had to (instead, the bike shop just bent the parts back and things were ok -- note: they did this for free!).
2. A friend of mine had a problem with trying to put his rear tire on in the woods (he got a flat). He found that he had accidentally bent the 2 small metal strips that are part of the disc brake pad. This was a VERY small problem and one that was pointed out and fixed by the bike shop (they said you just need to look at those and be careful when putting on the back tire).
3. I was riding in the woods and I fell and a twig damaged this part on the center of the wheel that provided full wheel motion (the result was that I could still ride it but not that well). I took it to my bike shop and they replaced the damaged part (more good news: they spent approximately 40 minutes and didn't charge me anything).
4. When we were up at Mt Snow, we left the bikes out in the rain. Our chains rusted slightly (but they were restored when we applied the teflon lubricant that we use). More annoyingly, a couple of the bolts have shown some rust and this annoyed me. I shouldn't have left the thing out in the rain (if it really, really annoys me, I'm going to replace them -- it shouldn't cost me more than 10 bucks).

Problems/Weaknesses:
1. Since I get nervous with major decisions, I started to notice a 'hum' in my tires -- my 2 friends say they have the same thing and that it's normal. Now, I don't even know if it's there or not.
2. A major issue was the shifting across the 3 main rings (the ones that you shift with your left hand). When I first used the bike, the shiftiing was fine. But both my friend and I had a problem with the chain skipping when we riding it in the woods and going from the first to second ring. At first, I knew that my major fall that bent the middle chain ring had some affect. But after that was fixed, it was still doing it. I asked the guy at the bike shop and he said that most mountain bikes have this issue -- where you need to hold the left shifter down until the chain fully engages the ring. I did this and things were better but not perfect. LATEST UPDATE WITH THIS: a) My friend (who has had the same problem) said that he learned how to adjust the bike so that he no longer has any problem with skipping (I have to ask him to show me what he did); b) I told the bike shop people about what my friend said and the guy essentially told me that it can be adjusted but that one really doesn't know the exact adjustment until it's done in the riding conditions that I'm involved in (basically: I'm going to have to learn this from my friend). So... until I get in the woods and try it out after the tune-up (and maybe have my friend look at it), I don't have a major resolution to this issue (although, again, my friend does).
3. There was some rust before the rust occurred from leaving the bike outside in the rain all night. The screw that connects the lock-out knob is rusting (no big deal but it is directly in sight). If it annoys me, I'll replace it for a couple of bucks (I assume). Also, the metal pieces that attach the pedals to the crank are a rust color now.
4. Every once in a while, one of our bikes squeaks. I know it sounds silly but it makes us feel like there may be something wrong. It goes away -- it may be due to the brake pads?? We don't know.
5. Since I get nervous with major decisions, I started to notice a 'hum' in my tires -- my 2 friends say they have the same thing and that it's normal. Now, I don't even know if it's there or not.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Hartshorne

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $1100.00

Purchased At:   Peddler in Long Branch, NJ

Similar Products Used:   Old mongoose


Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Pavel Volf a Cross Country Rider from Czech Republic

Date Reviewed: September 2, 2002

Strengths:    I own one of these and can tell you this much, I had to change several parts but the best picks are strong light alu frame, Mavic wheels and definitely AVID mechs discs.

Weaknesses:    There is no such a thing

Bottom Line:   
This is a rigid and fast hardtail with awesome handling=I can't get enough of my super Fatty. This bikes climbs hills as if on flat. Over all this bike is a superb 5. Anyone can buy it, everyone should.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Sumava and Beskydy

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $1300.00

Purchased At:   All Season

Bike Setup:   F600 frame, MAVIC wheels, AVID discs, XT components and XTR crank set.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Bill Leonard a Weekend Warrior from Holmdel, NJ USA

Date Reviewed: August 9, 2002

Strengths:    frame strength, control, stability, disc brakes

Weaknesses:    None so far

Bottom Line:   
I am very new to mountain biking and, with the purchase of of the 2003 F600, I am now addicted to it. Two friends of mine did the research and bought the 2002 F600 (grabbing it when the bike dropped in price from $1300+ to $1000). I borrowed a 12-year-old Mongoose and rode the trails (intermediate and expert) with them at Hartshorne about 3 or 4 times. When I switched to the F600, the difference, of course, was incredible. We've been riding the expert trails pretty hard (although I don't ride them as hard as they do yet) and the bike seems bullet-proof (again, they have essentially the same bike -- the 2002 version). The control/stability going up and down hills is very impressive (I'm basing this on a very limited experience with an old-model Mongoose so ... keep that in mind :) ). The disc brakes make stopping easy (BUT keep one thing in mind: my friend's back tire was flat and, when he fixed it and put it back on, there was rubbing because the disc brakes have 2 small metal pieces that can be easily bent if you aren't careful putting the tire back on; the bike shop bent the small metal piece back and things were fine).

One minor note -- the saddle is softer than the 2002 model (my friends switched the stock saddle with one of their older, more comfortable ones -- I didn't have to).

The only minor negative I can report thus far is: towards the end of the bank ride, my left thumb gets fatigued when shifting upward to the middle ring (the one that gives me gears 10-18) because of the required force; I think this is probably adjustable so ... when I take the bike in for my first tune-up, I'll have them adjust it (this is minor and probably adjustable so ... I didn't list it as a weakness).

[ Note: One of my friends really liked the fact that the front suspension is not on the forks themselves but, instead, is on the frame directly before the fork. He felt that this had less of a chance of breaking. ]

The bottom line: I am VERY happy with this bike and my 2 friends (who have much more experience than I do) are VERY happy as well (these bikes are taking a pounding -- drop-offs, logs, rocks, etc. -- and nothing happens to them). I chose the Mat Black color (the Tangelo is the other color for 2003). Because of their excitement about how much bike they got for the money, I'm giving it a 5 for value. I'm giving it a 5 for Overall Rating.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Hartshorne

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $1100.00

Purchased At:   Peddlers

Similar Products Used:   a 12-year-old Mongoose

Bike Setup:   Stock (except I had the clipless pedals replaced with ones that use toe clips)

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Jon from Atlanta

Date Reviewed: August 8, 2002

Strengths:    Stiff frame, Avid disc brakes, weight, looks, shock lockout

Weaknesses:    not enough travel on head shock

Bottom Line:   
I just test rode the new 2003 F600 today and it was a pretty sweet ride. They also had it in flat black, which I think looked better than any other bike in the store. Cranks have been upgraded from the Canondale-brand Coda cranks to 2003 Shimano Deore splined, hollow cranks. Levers have been downgraded from Avids to Cannondale-branded levers. I personally think the tradeoff for better cranks is worth it however. Best of all though is a $150.00 price drop from the 2002 model. I think I am gonna have to get me one. 4 flamers for value because Cannondales just are a little too expensive in my eyes, and 5 flamers overall 'cause this bike rocks.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   Tested or demo'ed only

Price Paid:    $1099.00

Purchased At:   Atlanta Cycling

Similar Products Used:   Gary Fisher HKEK, GT Talera

Bike Setup:   Stock

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by James a Cross Country Rider from Hampton, VA, USA

Date Reviewed: June 9, 2002

Strengths:    Light, verry nimble and a Great climber. I love the brakes, concidering the price I'll take them over hydrolics any day, the fork is the best i've ridden on the lockout sweet and easy to reach over and twist with the little thumb thing on there.

Weaknesses:    I haven't gut much, I guess some people might not like the stiffness but i love it, it accelerates like a funny car. If you want a softer ride throw on a shock seat post and a new seat. I did.

Bottom Line:   
This Bike Rocks! I don't think the stiffness is a bad thing it's gerat, if you want to protect your posterior then add a shock post. This bike can easiley perform up there with the $2000+ bikes. This bike is money well spent. (BTW that $900 is on top of a '00 rock hopper trade in)If your ready to step into something you can race or maybe just something you really get out there and tear it up with but can't see spending neer of over $2000 then this is the bike for you.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $900.00

Purchased At:   Conties (newport news)

Similar Products Used:   F2000('00), stump jumper, rock hopper.

Bike Setup:   stock, except for An alien shock absorbing post and a body geometry saddle.

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Ed a Weekend Warrior from Bohemia,NY,USA

Date Reviewed: May 13, 2002

Strengths:    I like the Frame geometry alot,I have not encountered the stiffness that others have wrote about. The bike is very good climbing, the lockout feature really helps.

Weaknesses:    I guess the seat although I don't have to much to compare to. The few other MTB's I have ridden did seem to have a more comfortable saddle.

Bottom Line:   
I plan to do some upgrading to this bike.Probably upgrade to XTR Rapidrise,change the saddle but over all I am very pleased with the bike.Thank you to the guys at Carl Hart they have worked with me on all the fine tuning I have done so far.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Rocky Point

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $1067.00

Purchased At:   Carl Hart

Similar Products Used:   Specialized Stumpjumper

Bike Setup:   All Stock at this point

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Justin a Cross Country Rider from San Jose, CA, USA

Date Reviewed: May 5, 2002

Strengths:    Weight, looks, CAAD4 frame, Avid mechanical disc brakes

Weaknesses:    Avid mechanical brakes, for some reason every time I take off either wheel, brakes clamp down and doesnt let the wheel spin freely. I have taken the bike every week to the shop to get them to figure out what is wrong. They keep adjusting the brake, but as soon as you take off the wheel...stuck again :o(

Bottom Line:   
Terrific bike, the weight is amazing, almost like carrying nothing, Super Fatty DL fork is super nice, great travel and strength. I mainly bought it cause of the disc brakes and frame. With the suspended seat post, it feels like a full suspension bike. Even before I put the seat post on, as a hardtail, my friend who rides a Santa Cruz Superlight, was amazed when he test drove it. He liked it better than his Superlight. The CAAD4 frame is awesome. My only gripe is the brakes. Seems like also for 1300 dollars, you would expect a bit better on the shimano components, but I guess not :o) I am giving it 4 chilis for value, overall rating 4 chilis

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $1300.00

Purchased At:   Calabazas Cyclery

Similar Products Used:   Cannondale Jekyll 800

Bike Setup:   XTR F/R, XT shifters, rockshox suspension seat post, SpeedV WTB saddle, Coda bar ends

Reviews 1 - 15 (18 Reviews Total) | Next 15

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


F600 rear 650b clearance?

Can a 27.5in fit on the rear of an f600. I think its a 2004. Looks like it would be close but i have no wheel to try. Thanks in advance!Read More »

3.0 tires on a 2003 F600?

Thinking of running a fake fat for the winter and I'm wondering if I can run 3" tires in the rear. It looks fine in the front but the seems to be quite close in the rear. So if anyone has a Furio frame and a 3" tire and a 19mm rim could you please check it out for me? If not, tell me why it's a ... Read More »

Good Buy?: 2004 Cannondale F600 (Noob Question)

I'm trying to get into the sport. I started out by going to the LBS and asking a ton of questions. I rode some bikes and got a good feel for my size needs. I've also read a ton online. Now I'm trying to find a nice, older bike at a reasonable price. More bang for my buck and all. I'm finding o ... Read More »

Cannondale Fatty Rigid on Furio F600

So, like many others, my headshok fatty ultra dlr 80 died and I am contemplating switching it out with a cannondale fatty rigid fork from a 29er. My fame is a 2006 cannondale f600 furio x. I was wondering if this was possible. I understand the crown-axle measurement should be the same. Are there ... Read More »

Cannondale F700/F600 bridge cable, old cantilever

I just acquired a Cannondale F600, & want to use cantilever brakes. They came with CODA 700M brakes, which used an interesting "bridge cable". See attached pics. The cable ferrule inserts into a part..see the red circled area (which rotates on a hole, just above the tire), & the cable continues o ... Read More »

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