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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
so I guess I'll start with a little background on myself. back in my younger thinner years I would do a little flatland (though not very well, but I had fun). a few years ago my buddy asked me to go on a trail ride with him. he had a bike I could borrow so I did. after that I went to the walmart and bought a dreaded department store bike, the same one my buddy used (now is a good time to say he is about 20 pounds heavier than myself). he is still running fine and mine has had 3 new crank set ups before I just gave up on it and stopped riding. I went to see a friend last week in Lafayette who is an avid rider. one day we decided to go for a ride around and the fire was kindled in me again. he let me ride his new 29er for a while (no quick adjust on the seat and his legs are longer than mine). anyway I loved the ride. I seriously want to start up again but i want to do it right this time. I want a 29er, I don't really care at this point if it is geared or not, his wasn't and I was cool with it. I have a small budget and, here's the kicker, I am 280 pounds (and loosing but not quickly). I would love some help picking out a beginner 29er to start things up again.

thanks for all the future advice!
 

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R.I.P. DogFriend
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I am currently around 260, but even within the last year, I have been up to 275 and have been exclusively on a 29er during that time. If you're serious about being OK on SS, you budget will go further.

I have been through Abilene a couple times, and it's pretty flat compared to where I am but it might be nice to at least have a 1x9, but that's up to you.

What kind of budget do you have to work with?

How agressive are you now and do you see yourself riding aggressively in the near future?

How good are your bike repair/maintenance skills?

Would you be OK with a rigid fork?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
right now I'm looking between 400 and 500 but I may be able to convince my wife for a little more but not much. right now I'm not that aggressive but plan on becoming very aggressive, however Im not in any hurry to get there. I haven't done much work on bikes and when I did it was a long time ago. I am rather mechanically inclined, however, and I am a modder, I tinker with everything. I understand the general principles of how a bike works. as far as the fork goes my last bike had shocks that were way soft and I think were broken when I got it because they would not adjust ( thanks walmart).

Im glad you know where drabilene is, we are trying to move to austin this summer but that all depends on the job situation with my wife.
 

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R.I.P. DogFriend
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To stay within you budget, you'll have to make some compromise. I normally wouldn't recommend a Dart, but for your budget and since you aren't looking to get too agressive right away, this might be a good idea IF you can get a firmer spring for that fork.

http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/motobecane/outcast29_x.htm

On your budget I don't think you'll find an air spring fork, so whatever (suspension) fork you get, you will need to make sure you can get a firmer spring for it.

This is a singlespeed, but it has a dearailleur hanger and cable stops that would allow it to be converted to a gear bike should you decide to go that way.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
would having a solid fork broaden my options bc I don't think I really need anything fancy yet. and I'm not sure if I know what a dart is. thanks for the help, btw. if you ever need advice on buying a bass guitar I'm your man!
 

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R.I.P. DogFriend
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A 'Dart' is the lowest level fork Rock Shox sells. They are a very basic fork with relatively skinny stanchions (28mm). Better than walmart type stuff, but not something you'd want to keep once you get into riding more aggressively.

You could save about $140 and be on something otherwise very similar:

http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/windsor/windsor_cliff29_1.htm

This is also capable of being run with gears and you could add a more worthy suspension fork down the road should you want to.

Here is another alternative. It costs a little more, but it is a very respected bike and worthy of some upgrades down the line should you want to add a suspension fork or disc brakes:

http://fwcycling.com/product/redline-monocog-29er-62575-1.htm
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
that's excellent. thank you so much jeff! maybe the next time you are running through Abilene I can take you for some bbq! I think I will buy the redline and immediately turn around and upgrade the brakes.
 

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ballbuster
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Or check out a Redline D660. It is a rigid bike, but it has gears. If you have one bike, I would suggest it be geared because there will be more places you can ride. Also, you'll be able to ride farther.

It has a rigid fork, but I'm of the opinion that a rigid fork is better than a crappy suspension fork. The Dart is decent, but it's going to be way flexy under your weight. You can always upgrade to a good suspension fork in the future. You can get a used Reba 29er for $200-300 or so pretty easily.

I'm totally sold on 29ers. I would suggest not even bothering to look at kiddy wheel bikes as long as you are over 5'4".... but that's me. YMMV.
 

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R.I.P. DogFriend
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You can get Avid BB7 mechanical discs for about $45 - $50 each, and they would work with the stock brake levers. If you do get mechanical discs, you would also need some new cables and housings as the brakes are further from the levers than the v-brakes.

You can find some pretty good deals on hydraulic systems if you shop hard, know what length hoses you'll need, know what adapter(s) you'll need, etc. But that can be a snake pit if you're not pretty thorough.

Texas BBQ rules!
 

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Class Clown
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i would get the toughest bike you can afford. go with strength over anything else.

basically...light, strong, cheap -> pick 2

something like a dart fork probably won't cut it. the last thing you want to be doing is destroying parts. check out the clydes forum too, and welcome to the boards!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
man, thanks for all your help. I went to my local shop to see what they had. they deal in specialized and trek. the owner said he prefers the specialized to trek because of handling. the one he suggested that they had in stock was, I believe, the hardrock. http://biketown.com/product/specialized-hardrock-sport-disc-29er-57511-1.htm
I really like the redline but don't know if anyone in austin will do warranty work and I dint know if I will ever go to fort worth again, it's 4 hours from austin and ~3 from Abilene. I have family in Abilene so if something were to happen to my bike I would come closer to going to bike town to have it fixed than to drive to fw and just hang out by my lonesome.
what di you guys think?
 

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R.I.P. DogFriend
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It all adds up in the end. With the price of fuel these days, it would probably be better to get something from a local dealer unless you're not concerned about that stuff (and it looks like you are).
 
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