Kona Dawg Dee-Lux 2003 Full Suspension

4.86/5 (21 Reviews)
MSRP : $2199.00


Product Description



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Reviews 1 - 15 (21 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by TaylorInTheHouse a Weekend Warrior from Napa, California, United States of America

Date Reviewed: October 21, 2008

Strengths:    Super light weight compared to my specialized bighit. The rear components are also good (XT and LX). The brakes are pretty good also. And the air shock is nice and easy to adjust with a good pump.

Weaknesses:    Haven't found any yet.

Bottom Line:   
This is the bike for the guy who does a little bit of everything. I dirt jump it, I have jumped down an 8 stair on it, and I cross country ride it. If you are looking for the bike to get the job done, get a Kona Dawg!

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Favorite Trail:   Livewire at Northstar

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $750.00

Purchased At:   ebay

Similar Products Used:   Gary Fisher HI-Fi, Kona Stinky 2-4, specialized bighit.

Bike Setup:   It is stock except for the pedals.

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by freshseeker a Cross Country Rider from durango, co

Date Reviewed: May 27, 2007

Strengths:    light, cheap, stout

Weaknesses:    cheap components, rear suspension, rims, fox float shock

Bottom Line:   
after riding this bike hard for 2 years i still luv it. it has completely changed my riding style. this bike likes the air. great for x-c or chill downhill or freeriding. changed the rear shock bolt placement and was hitting some desent sized drops, broke the top bracket that connects the top of the rear shock to the bike. when that happened broke the left swing arm of he suspension. not covered under warrenty. about $80 for new arm and a stronger bracket. the float leaks even after new seals, still works well though. rims are narrow and not super strong. other than that the bike rocks.

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Favorite Trail:   so many

Duration Product Used:   2 Years

Price Paid:    $800.00

Purchased At:   ebay

Similar Products Used:   santa cruz superlight

Bike Setup:   2.5 tires, downhill tubes, downhill bracket for rear suspension

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Bruce Bailey a Weekend Warrior from Longmont, CO USA

Date Reviewed: October 11, 2006

Strengths:    Excellent engineering. This bike has been well thought out by some smart guys. The basic vibrations on this bike are very low and the frame and the components seem to fit together quite well.

Weaknesses:    Pricey. But then I am cheap.

Bottom Line:   
This is a great Machine!! I rode some bikes that were selling for $5,000 before deciding on this model. The engineering is in the same league as the more expensive bikes, like the Maverick. It weighs just a touch more than the pricer bikes but this greater weight adds to the downhill stability. It does not have the weight of the Stinkey but it is lighter and better for the uphill part of the equation. This is a superior all mountain bike. I can tell we will be friends for a long time.

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Favorite Trail:   Klondick Bluffs, Porky Rim

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $2200.00

Purchased At:   Ft Collins

Similar Products Used:   Kona Stinky, Giant AC1, Maverick

Bike Setup:   Basic setup, just from the Factory.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Nate Lalley a Weekend Warrior from oil city, pa, usa

Date Reviewed: May 11, 2006

Strengths:    strong bike, suspension can take hits well, first gear is really low!, suspension is decent on small stuff, it looks really sweet, strong brakes, quality, sweet all-around bike

Weaknesses:    maybe the suspension on small stuff, but it is still pretty good

Bottom Line:   
if you are a trail rider that does everything from crazy climbs to decent sized drops, this is your bike. 1st gear is extremely low so if you plan to climb, you're covered.
the rebound adjustment on the rear shock works pretty well and is very easy to adjust on the fly.it has a marzocchi gran fondo race 1 fork and fox float r shock both with 5 inches of travel and both work pretty good for a variety of condtions. so if you're looking for a tough trailbike that can do almost anything you want, this is your bike.

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Favorite Trail:   i just ride behind house right now

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $1700.00

Purchased At:   mountain road cycles

Similar Products Used:   $300 gary fisher and $300 raleigh - both junk

Bike Setup:   stock besides sun ringle platform pedals. and by the way, mine is a 2006 NOT a 2003.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Nate Lalley a Weekend Warrior from oil city, pa, usa

Date Reviewed: May 11, 2006

Strengths:    strong bike, suspension can take hits well, first gear is really low!, suspension is decent on small stuff, it looks really sweet, strong brakes, quality, sweet all-around bike

Weaknesses:    maybe the suspension on small stuff, but it is still pretty good

Bottom Line:   
if you are a trail rider that does everything from crazy climbs to decent sized drops, this is your bike. 1st gear is extremely low so if you plan to climb, you're covered.
the rebound adjustment on the rear shock works pretty well and is very easy to adjust on the fly.it has a marzocchi gran fondo race 1 fork and fox float r shock both with 5 inches of travel and both work pretty good for a variety of condtions. so if you're looking for a tough trailbike that can do almost anything you want, this is your bike.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   i just ride behind house right now

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $1700.00

Purchased At:   mountain road cycles

Similar Products Used:   $300 gary fisher and $300 raleigh - both junk

Bike Setup:   stock besides sun ringle platform pedals. and by the way, mine is a 2006 NOT a 2003.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Mike Robbins a Weekend Warrior from SLC, Utah USA

Date Reviewed: June 11, 2004

Strengths:    Geometry fits me perfectly. Good components. Stable on down hills.

Weaknesses:    The only complaint I have is that the frame only has one pair of braze ons.

Bottom Line:   
This is my first FSB and I love it. I've been hill climbing and down hilling along the Wasatch front and have had no problem. I am convinced this is one of the best bike in it's class.

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Favorite Trail:   Boneville Rim

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $1500.00

Purchased At:   Chose To Ride

Similar Products Used:   Fisher Cake

Bike Setup:   Stock, added tire liners and a seat post rack

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Mitch Dalton a Weekend Warrior from San Juan Capistrano, CA

Date Reviewed: January 7, 2004

Strengths:    Its all about the shocks and the fact that it makes you feel invincable.

Weaknesses:    Youve got to be kidding...

Bottom Line:   
This is the choice bike, how could you not want it. I will never choose a bike over this one. I believe anyone should by this bike, even those that are uneasy with themselves. This bike is a great confidence builder. You have totl control of what ever your doing.

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Favorite Trail:   Any San Juan Trail

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $2500.00

Purchased At:   Buy My Bikes

Similar Products Used:   Kona Dawg (a step down but still a great bike)

Bike Setup:   Stock (Why upgrade its already a great bike)

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by grant a Downhiller from Ann Arbor MI

Date Reviewed: November 12, 2003

Strengths:    Everything, its fast, it smooths out big drops (anything under 7ft)its stable in the air, the color is bad A$$,

Weaknesses:    hahahaha........ funny, well maybe cable run on my beautiful frame, but that it

Bottom Line:   
the bottom line is that this bike is amazing!! its reall fast when sprinting, it his long gaps and dirt jumps with ease, its butter off creative drop in lines (4-6 ft drops with 5-10 ft gaps, i havent hit the 8ftr to flat yet, but, it'll prolly be smooth)and even though i havent done any trail riding on it yet im sure its smooth on the descents. I could care less about climbing but i have noticed it climbs very well. I weigh 135 and an absolute gravity junky,and for my purposes its great i love it. I plan on racing all next season,and im going to Whistler for 3 weeks over the summer. The first day i got the bike i invited a friend over who had just gotten his new bike and we went riding from 7:30 to 7:30, and this bike has completely changed my riding style, the first day i hit drops that i used to be skeptical about with no problem, and after a while i started throwing whips and mini tables off of them!! this bike is totally confidence inspiring.I think that for light weight people that this bike is indestructable and its perfect for the aspiring MTNX racer or dirt jumper. PS> Thanx for the bike dad!!

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Favorite Trail:   anything freeride

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $2200.00

Purchased At:   Town and Country Cyclery

Similar Products Used:   i ghave a trek 4500 thats heavily modified, i love it but theres no real comparison

Bike Setup:   stock except put on some blue anodized primo BMX pedals eventually gonna buy 2.5 inch rubbers (maxxis mobsters, longer travel fork (either dorado single crown, or Z1 fr sl) and atomlab trailpimp rims im gonna race mountaincross and im going to whistler

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by John a Weekend Warrior from Sandy Hook, CT

Date Reviewed: September 22, 2003

Strengths:    strong, shifts buttery smooth, climbs like a bear, predictable handling, strong brakes

Weaknesses:    squeeky seat, that's it

Bottom Line:   
If you are in the market for an abusive and fun bike to ride look no further. Of all of the bikes I looked at this one takes the cake by a long shot. This bike climbs better than my old Fisher hardtail and downhills like a raped ape. I weigh 250lbs and this bike handles my abuse and begs for more. At first I was kind of uneasy of the air shocks due to my weight but they are aggresive and there is close to no bob when riding hills or hard flats. Everybody I know that tests it loves it and it is a great bike. For the money you don't have to upgrade a thing (even though we all know we will!) Don't waste time looking anywhere else and go test ride this bike, you won't be dissapointed.

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Favorite Trail:   Huntington Park

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $2000.00

Purchased At:   lbs

Similar Products Used:   2003 Gary Fisher Tassajara

Bike Setup:   Stock except swapped the handlebars for FSA Carbon Fiber downhill bars.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Nick a Cross Country Rider from Montreal, QC

Date Reviewed: June 16, 2003

Strengths:    The bike itself. It's so powerful. This is an amazing bike for the price.

Weaknesses:    A bit heavy. Stock pedals.

Bottom Line:   
This is a update for my previous review. Now it's been 3 months since I have the bike, and I'm still impressed by it. It climbs perfectly "in-saddle". The biggest strenght is the downhill. With is head angle and slope top tube, this bike can be push pretty hard. I had some problems with the fork. Like I said in the first review, this bike can be purchased with a Fox Float or a Fox Vanilla. Mine came with the Vanilla. The fork came with a medium coil, wich is to soft for me. So it is not a bike problem, but more a rider problem. Anyway, this bike rule. If you need a bike to do trails, jump and dowhill, this is the bike.

So now let your playstation alone and go ride !
Stick to the trail !

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Favorite Trail:   Santa Fé

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $2200.00

Purchased At:   Le Yeti

Similar Products Used:   Hardtails, Devinci Guzzler, Rocky Mountain Carve

Bike Setup:   Stock execpt the pedals that I changed for Shimano DX.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Nick Morneau a Cross Country Rider from Montreal, Qc, Canada

Date Reviewed: May 23, 2003

Strengths:    The frame, very solid. Both suspension. All parts exept pedals. Almost no bob. Geometry of the frame. This bike is a good all around.

Weaknesses:    The stock pedals suck. Little bob when going uphill in stand position. A bit heavy, but it's a strenght when going downhill.

Bottom Line:   
It's only been 3 weeks since I have this bike, and I feel way better than ever. This is a great bike for downhill, light freeride and cross-country. It's a bit heavy, but it's not that bad. The bike feel like a tank, unbreakable. If you want a bike to do almost everything (that means FR, XC, DH, but no 10 foot gaps), that's the bike. If you're planning to buy a Dawg, save some more and get the Dee-Lux because just for the fork, crankset and drivetrain it worth the 600$. Something to take care : you can have this bike with a Vanilla in front or a float, and same thing for the rear. I know Kona makes both.

Now, let your playstation alone and go ride.
Stick to the trail !!

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Favorite Trail:   Bromont

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $2100.00

Purchased At:   Le Yeti

Similar Products Used:   Rocky Mountain Carve, Devinci Guzzler, couple of hartails,

Bike Setup:   Stock except the pedals that I changed for Shimano 646 (DX).

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Raptor a Cross Country Rider from Toronto

Date Reviewed: May 22, 2003

Strengths:    Suprisingly lighter then I expected. Very good components come stock. Quality Paint. Plush F and R Fox suspension and strong hydraulic brakes. Frame can take anything you throw at it.

Weaknesses:    Saddle, bottom of the line Shimano M505 pedals, grips.

Bottom Line:   
Was orignally very happy with the Kahuna Dee Lux but wanted to upgrade to a stronger frame with more travel. The new Dawg series seemed to fit the bill (I purchased the Dee Lux model because of the better componentry). According to Kona, the Dawg is classified as a Back Country bike which basically means it fits very nicely between a XC and FR bike.

The most noticable attributes of this bike is the plushness of the suspension and the excellent feel and control of the Shimano hydros. The 4" of F and R travel are perfect for my riding preference/style. It's also a great handler at speed especially going down hill.

Overall, I just love this bike. If you are like me and like a bike that can do day long or Epic XC and the occasional aggressive/crazy stuff, the Dawg Dee Lux is the way to go.....

Note that because the bike is more heavily built then a traditional XC bike, it does take a little bit more to get it uphill. However, if you are willing to sacrifice a bit of weight for a much stronger frame, this is not a problem.

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Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $2200.00

Purchased At:   Trailblazers

Similar Products Used:   Kona Kahuna Dee Lux, Kona Yee-ha, Yeti AS-R, Sugar 2 and Sugar 3, Older Trek Hard Tail

Bike Setup:   Stock except for Botranger FS2000 Sadle

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Nick Glazener a Cross Country Rider from Eugene, Oregon

Date Reviewed: May 15, 2003

Strengths:    Good geometry. Rear suspension design.

Weaknesses:    Components were one grade less than I would have hoped for.

Bottom Line:   
I am very pleased with my decision on this bike. Although the purchase seemed spontaneous, I have put a lot of research into frame geometry and design since October. This bike met the qualifications on paper. Much
like my downhill skiing tastes, I prefer equipment that is a little heavier with a slight damped response for stability. This bike is the equivalent to my K2 Mod
X all terrain skis. The first time I skied on my K2s, I knew I had made the right choice. I felt the same way about the Kona Dawg after last night's ride. I wanted a bike that would be comfortable to sit on and pedal all day. I also needed a bike that would hold up to my crash frequency. The granny ring takes care of any uphill weight concerns. It actually weighs in at about 28 lbs..

I looked closely at the Klein Palaminos and the Santa Cruz Blurs. I am hesitant to accept unique technical designs just because they are new. I trust a shock that is positioned vertical more than horizontal. I liked Kona's philosophy of staying with something that is proven. Just like the ski industry moving back to wood core skis, the 4 bar suspension system is basic and works.

The frame geometry is very similar to my Fisher Big Sur. I knew it was a good physical fit. Here is a list of the unknowns and my observations:

1. Rear suspension bob: It was insignificant. If anything it helped me on short steep climbs. I have a tendency to over power on short bursts and loosing traction. The suspension dampens that power burst just enough to maintain traction. The dampened power transmission became an advantage. This was only noticeable on standing bursts. It was insignificant on sitting power fluctuations. I don't think a lock out is necessary. Even having very tired legs, I cleared a rock outcropping that I haven't been able to in the past.

I already had a Fox Vanilla RL front fork that I switched out. I do use the front shock lockout. I do a lot of very long gravel road and singletrack climbs. I like to stand in order to stretch the legs. The lockout on the front makes a big difference in those situations.

2. BB height: Much higher than Big Sur. The only test of this feature on last night's ride was the switchbacks. I did fine on the uphill. I was more tentative on the downhill switchbacks. This area is one of my major weaknesses to begin with. I was also very tired. The MRT will be a better test of the BB height. I hit the pedals a lot on that trail with my Big Sur.

3. Climbing: I had extremely tired, sore legs. I was slow but I attribute that to my physical condition more than bike weight. The balance of the bike is good. The seat position is a little better for me than the Big Sur. I like to be on top of the pedals more.

4. Descending: Absolutely awesome. I went out early for a little extra. We climbed 5 miles up the trail to the road before returning to hook up with the regular group. I was tired and had almost made up my mind to not come back up after I got down. The descent was so much fun it completely erased any memories of the pain I felt climbing up. I went back up for more. I am still standing on the pedals when I don't need to anymore. I had the rear shock at 150 lbs on the first trip down. That was extremely plush. I pumped it up to 160+ for the second trip. That was just right for climbing. A little rougher on the descent but a good trade off. No complaints at all.

23 miles for the night.

This bike is going to be a great advantage for me at the CCP100. The energy I save and the time I cut off on the descents will far exceed any extra I need to get the bike up to the top.

I am a hard grader. A 4 is very good for me. An upgrade on components would have made it a 5 in the value category.

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Favorite Trail:   freeriding at the ranch

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $1900.00

Purchased At:   Paul's Bicycle Way of Life

Similar Products Used:   No FS bikes. Fisher Big Sur.

Bike Setup:   Stock with exceptions: Fox Vanilla RL front fork, Eggbeater pedals, WTB Laser V saddle

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by George a Weekend Warrior from Port Townsend WA USA

Date Reviewed: May 9, 2003

Strengths:    Frame, components, Awesome fork, and rear suspension

Weaknesses:    climbing, but not so its a big deal.

Bottom Line:   
This bike is confedence inspiring on the down hills, roots, logs what ever. It is a bit taxing on the long uphills compared to my I Drive but the good way out does the bad here. I rode my buddies Bear deelux for a month before buying the dawg. I haven't had a regret once. It shifts flawlessly and soaks up everything. I weigh in at 220 so that says something. I drop off stuff i wouldn't even look at with my i drive. I wouldn't spend the extra for the primo though. The Bear Ive been riding comes with the lock out and i never thought to use it. Defently not worth the extra grand and change. I am also impressed with the Tioga tires on the bike. ive used panaracer xc and IRC mythos. The Tioga's are every bit as good as the panaracers and lots better then the mythos.

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Favorite Trail:   any tight single track.

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $2099.00

Purchased At:   moutain cycle

Similar Products Used:   Gt idrive is the only other full sp. bike ive riden

Bike Setup:   just changed the grips to ouri lock ons with the yeti grip. Bike is ready to rip out of the box.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Alex a Cross Country Rider from Israel

Date Reviewed: April 23, 2003

Strengths:    Very good geometry for climbing, light weight, excellent for downhills and aggressive single tracks. Good components.

Weaknesses:    Did not find yet

Bottom Line:   
Excellent bike for aggressive XC rides

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Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $2200.00

Purchased At:   Slalom

Similar Products Used:   Specialized Rockhopper FSR, Haro X1

Bike Setup:   Standard setup

Reviews 1 - 15 (21 Reviews Total) | Next 15

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