Mountain Bike Reviews Forum banner
1 - 12 of 12 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
739 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
5 questions to ask yourself and answer when asking for information in "what to buy"

Hello and welcome to the mtbr forums.

Since you are likely new to the mountain biking, it is probable that you are seeking advise on what bike to buy; hence, the creation of this thread.

However before you post, please take the time to answer these 5 questions, if possible, to help the users of this board to say focused and help find the right bike for you.

1) What is your budget. Or budget range.
2) What kind of riding to you think you will do.
Mostly trails, AM, XC, DH or Not Sure?​
3) Full Suspension(FS) or HardTail(HT), or not sure?
4) OnLine, Local Bike Shop(LBS) or both.
Online shops tend to have a "better bang for the buck" that local bike shops because they cut out the middleman. But LBS also has their advantages.​
5) If you list several choices, do you want users to recommend similar bikes?
Most people in these forums, myself included, have their favorite brands and tend to highly recommend those. So to make sure we do not "push" bikes onto you, if you tell us not to make suggestions, we will not.​
Adding a few questions:
6) Anything that is a must? Like disc specific rims? Disc Brakes ...
7) Age? weight? Height? It may make a difference in how we respond.

Now, if you are asking help on "what to buy", please post a new thread, but keep these questions in mind, or just copy them over to your new thread! Thanks!

Please see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mountain_bike for the meaning of XC, AM and other mountain bike information. It does not give micro specific detail, but does give a good macro level view.

Thanks,
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
739 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I have a few suggestions for you....

however, would you mind posting this in another thread under the "what to buy" forum.

I'd like to keep this as a FYI for new users.

Sorry about that. I realized I forgot to mention that earlier and since then added this to my original post:

Now, if you are asking help on "what to buy", please post a new thread, but keep these questions in mind, or just copy them over to your new thread! Thanks!

I'll give you some feedback when I get back, gotta run!

Thanks again
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
462 Posts
Nice txjohng!
A great starting point.

I realize this might be sort of a rough draft so I'm just going to throw some ideas out there:

Most people who have questions fall into one of several categories.

Which bike is the best value?
Which bike is the right fit for me? or Which bike fit's my style of riding?


Consider these aspects when asking your questions.

Also, most bikes come with a list of parts and it often helps to know what those parts are and how they compare within the other bikes you are considering. Realize most alloy bike frames of the same size are roughly within a pound of each other (chromoly-steel weighs more). The components are what make up the bulk of the weight on your bike. Higher end (more expensive) componentsare usually lighter.

Suspension
Suspension is probably the most confusing aspect of buying a new bike.
Know what kind of riding you plan to do.
Quick Reference:
XC - Cross Country usually long fast rides done on light fast bikes - short travel
AM - All Mountain a little bit of XC with some jumps and hard riding - medium travel
FR - Free Ride - long travel
DH - Down Hill - long travel

Find out how much travel you think you might need. 80-100 is considered XC, 100-130 AM, 130 or more FR/DH
What's the difference between air suspension and coil? - lighter forks tend to use air, heavy duty forks tend to use coils or a combination of air and coil.
What's a good fork? - weight has as much to do with a fork's value as does reputation and features such as lock out, remote, compression and rebound.

Wheels
What about the wheelset? - consider this carefully, A good set of wheels can cost as much as a new bike.
Weight and durability are some key aspects of a good wheelset to consider.

Components
You basically have two main brands, Shimano and SRAM
Shimano in decending order:
XTR, XT, LX, Deore, Alivio

SRAM in decending order:
X0, X9, X7, X5, X4

Brakes
Three main types: V-brake, Mechanical Disc, Hydraulic Disc
Major brands are Avid, Hayes, Hope, Shimano, Magura

You can find out more about brakes in the Brakes forum. And look for the Disc vs V-brake faq located in MTBR.

Finally, now a days most bikes are so close to one another in terms of quality and price it may just come down to which bike looks better to you. And whenever you get an oportunity, test ride as many bikes as you can.
 

·
Freshly Fujified
Joined
·
8,199 Posts
I agree-a great start

And again, please don't look to this as flame bait, but the questions you just posed are the very issues that has everyone bickering.

Value-people argue over this constantly (e.g. Ibex vs Moto)

Weight-again, another issue that we've gone round and round about ( e.g. What exactly is target weight? -OR- IH bikes have a reputation for being heavy )

Fit-many people believe differently about the importance of things like tt length, standover, etc.

Riding style- some bikes straddle several riding types, and perceived durability of frames in particular get people arguing.

Believe me, I'd love to see this forum settle down, and while I'm citing some examples that hit close to home for many of us, I don't want anyone to think I'm pointing fingers. I'm just pointing out examples of how things get derailled. People come here for advice. We give it. It's never going to be 100% agreeable. The bottom line is that it's really an issue of how people conduct themselves in sharing their opinions, and dealing with the fact that there are times when there will never be a concensus.

Thoughts?

Bob
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
462 Posts
I think if you lay out the facts before hand, most of the user's questions should be answered before they even need to ask them. What I wrote was a rough draft some basic information I think would help the user answer his/her question themselves. That should be the purpose of a sticky.
(EDIT: It's really not a rough draft, more like blurbs...)

The questions being asked should be a question to themselves.
The facts are there to help guide them to the answer.
 

·
There's no app for this.
Joined
·
5,369 Posts
what a load of

......oh, thoughts? Yep a few:

I've always tried to keep it simple.

1) It must fit properly; ride it first.
2) seek the best combination of performance, value, and service. Miss one part... and you've erred.

The good news is now it's hard to buy a bad bike; the bad news is there's so much choice it's a minefield to comprehend and compare.

Now if only I could follow my own advice....:rolleyes:

Just my .02, Bob. cheers, Jim
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
739 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Becane73 said:
Nice txjohng!
A great starting point.

I realize this might be sort of a rough draft so I'm just going to throw some ideas out there:

Most people who have questions fall into one of several categories.

Which bike is the best value?
Which bike is the right fit for me? or Which bike fit's my style of riding?


Consider these aspects when asking your questions.

Also, most bikes come with a list of parts and it often helps to know what those parts were and how they compare within the bikes you are considering.

If bike weight is a concern, realize most alloy bike frames of the same size are roughly within a pound of each other (chromoly-steel weighs more). The components are what make up the bulk of the weight on your bike. Higher end components are usually lighter.

Suspension
Suspension is probably the most confusing aspect of buying a new bike.
Know what kind of riding you plan to do.
Quick Reference:
XC - Cross Country usually long fast rides done on light fast bikes - short travel
AM - All Mountain a little bit of XC with some jumps and hard riding - medium travel
FR - Free Ride - long travel
DH - Down Hill - long travel

Find out how much travel you think you might need. 80-100 is considered XC, 100-130 AM, 130 or more FR/DH
What's the difference between air suspension and coil? - lighter forks tend to use air, heavy duty forks tend to use coils or a combination of air and coil.
What's a good fork? - weight has as much to do with a fork's value as does reputation and features such as lock out, remote, compression and rebound.

Wheels
What about the wheelset? - consider this carefully, A good set of wheels can cost as much as a new bike.
Weight and durability are key aspects of a good wheelset.

Components
You basically have two main brands, Shimano and SRAM
Shimano in decending order:
XTR, XT, LX, Deore, Alivio

SRAM in decending order:
X0, X9, X7, X5, X4

Brakes
Three main types: V-brake, Mechanical Disc, Hydraulic Disc
Major brands are Avid, Hayes, Hope, Shimano, Magura

You can find out more about brakes in the Brakes forum. And look for the Disc vs V-brake faq located in MTBR.

Finally, now a days most bikes are so close to one another in terms of quality and price it may just come down to which bike looks better to you. And whenever you get an oportunity, test ride as many bikes as you can.
I have a link to a wiki pages which explains some of this. I think there is a fine line here between writing a complete beginners guide, which I do not wanna do, and getting the OP to point us in the direction they want. That is the purpose of this...to get a general direction and sticking to it.

A complete beginners guide would be nice, however, it think that it belongs in a another sticky thread.

I think we should have 2 sticky what to buy forums.
1) being something like this, where a user can question themselves. Macro view
2) something like a beginners guide that can give a more micro view. Talks about brakes, suspensions, forks ...and the whole works.
 

·
Freshly Fujified
Joined
·
8,199 Posts
Some wise words

You've always been one to give sage advice Jim. Fit, fit, fit. If it don't fit, you won't enjoy it and it becomes an expensive dust collector. The combination of performance value and service is definitely key. Now if we could only agree on what those three things mean!!!

Thanks for your contribution.

Bob
 

·
There's no app for this.
Joined
·
5,369 Posts
Easy fit calculator I know of...

let's see....10 years of riding and about 5 expensive "last bikes I'll ever need" later, I finally discovered the sweet spot for me on a bike, that is, to recognize the feel of a good fit.

I wish I could say there's a better way, but I guess you must rely on the sales floor guy/lady helping out and trust their judgment, or that of an on line salesperson who likely has equal skills at fitting. Or better, a really experienced buddy.

As to performance, value and service, that's easy too...it's all subjective!

There, again I have solved a nagging global issue. :rolleyes:

Jim
 
1 - 12 of 12 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top