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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I recently decided to take up biking....I've been a hard core runner and I've noticed a lot more people taking up biking as an off day exercise routine (plus with the rising gas prices...biking to work is starting to look good).

So i've come to this forum seeking help.

What bike should I buy? What I want is a bike that I could take mountain biking (maybe 1 or 2 times a month) but mostly a bike that I could ride comfortably in the city or along the channel/river. That is all I have to work with. I don't know too much about bikes, but slowly learning here and there. What advice could you provide me? I should mention that I did/do own a road bike, and I definately know that I do not want another road bike.

I would appreciate any help you can give me.

Thanks.
 

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It seems like the best bike for you would be a cyclocross which is basically a road bike u can take out on trails,gravel,dirt etc. there pretty sweet. Check out the cyclocross forum at www.roadbikereview.com
 

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How much are you willing to spend? Also, you will want to factor in the cost of a mtb helmet(different from road helmets), and possibly some gloves.
 

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ditto on the 'cross bike. The Kona Jake is $1000CDN ($800US-ish). Don't forget to buy a floor pump and a multitool, too.
edit: sorry, I missed that you already own a road bike. Don't get a cross bike.
I like my Rockhopper. It's a great first race bike, solid simple construction and good specs (except the fork, which is hooey).
 

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If you already have a road bike then you should be looking at a pure mountain bike.

We need to know:
What region you live in
How much you weigh
What type of riding interests you
how often you will be riding
Do you have preconcieved notions on a hardtail vs full suspension?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
answers

We need to know:
What region you live in: Southern California
How much you weigh: 175lbs
Height: 6'
What type of riding interests you: um...what types are there?
how often you will be riding: every other day, weekends
Do you have preconcieved notions on a hardtail vs full suspension: I heard that full suspension would be great for mountain biking, but for ordinary biking, it just makes the bike heavier....right?
Budget: <$2000USD
 

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rjsunthar said:
What type of riding interests you: um...what types are there?
oh boy...
Cross Country: ride the bike up the hill, ride the bike back down. Most likely variety of mountain biking to involve spandex. Bikes are generally lighter, and this is where you'll see the most hardtails.
Downhill: big, honkin' bikes go screaming fast through stuff you wouldn't even walk down.
Freeride: a more relaxed version of downhill... the lines between the two are blurred, really... but generally thought of as riding stuff that hasn't been ridden. Freeride bikes (unlike some downhill bikes) can be pedaled. (someone correct me if I'm wrong)
Cyclocross: late season race of about 45 minutes... the bikes look like road bikes but have cantilever brakes, a shorter top tube, lower standover, and knobbies. Events consist of a short, loop with dismount/run sections.
Then there's road biking, dirt jumping, BMX, tricycles, unicycles, munis...

rjsunthar said:
Do you have preconcieved notions on a hardtail vs full suspension: I heard that full suspension would be great for mountain biking, but for ordinary biking, it just makes the bike heavier....right?
Budget: <$2000USD
I would wholeheartedly reccomend getting a hardtail for your first bike. It will improve your bike handling skills a whole lot faster than a dualie, and when you finally do get a dualie (if you even do), it'll be a difference you'll appreciate. Also, you mentioned that you want to commute, and a hardtail is the only way to go for city riding. I'd reccomend getting an aluminum hardtail with hydraulic discs and a good fork. You have a road bike, do you use clipless? If so, throw some spd's on after a few weeks, if not, you may want to wait.
Check out Kona, Specialized, and Rocky Mountain for some good entry-level bikes. I hope I've been helpful... this is based on my own experience only, as I was in your shoes not too long ago. Cheers, and happy riding.
 

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Cannondale Bad Boy Ultra

rjsunthar said:
So I recently decided to take up biking....I've been a hard core runner and I've noticed a lot more people taking up biking as an off day exercise routine (plus with the rising gas prices...biking to work is starting to look good).

So i've come to this forum seeking help.

What bike should I buy? What I want is a bike that I could take mountain biking (maybe 1 or 2 times a month) but mostly a bike that I could ride comfortably in the city or along the channel/river. That is all I have to work with. I don't know too much about bikes, but slowly learning here and there. What advice could you provide me? I should mention that I did/do own a road bike, and I definately know that I do not want another road bike.

I would appreciate any help you can give me.

Thanks.
Check out the Cannondale Bad Boy Ultra. It has a hardtail mountain bike frame with a front shock that is easily locked out for street riding, disc brakes and road wheels, which makes it excellent to take on the road or street. If you buy an extra set of mountain bike wheels and unlock the front shock, you have a full blown mountain bike hardtail. The handling is impeccable. It goes for about $1300 and expect to pay around $150 - $300 for a set of not too fancy mountain bike wheels. It will give you the best of both worlds. I own one that I use mainly to commute to work, but it also doubles as a hardtail when I don't want to ride my dual suspension bike.
 

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Lightweight Full Suspension

Look into a lightweight full suspension bike. Test ride different ones at local bike store. Drive down curbs etc. to get an idea of how different a full suspension vs hardtail bike is.

It is better to have "too much" bicycle than not enough. Unless your racing, a couple of pounds of extra weight will go unnoticed. You may find that you love the trails and a hardtail can be punishing.

I highly recommend checking out the Specialized FSR XC pro. (or something similar) It is a very versatile bicycle. Most LBS will have them in stock too. It cost's around US$1500. That will leave you enough for helmet, shoes, clothes, bike rack etc. to round out the cycling experience.

http://www.specialized.com/bc/SBCBkModel.jsp?sid=05FSRxc
 

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Quick and nimble or slower and big jumping

Hard tails are light, low maintence, very manuverable, road or trail compatable and can get you anywhere an intermediate level biker should or may want to go.

A full suspension XC bike may be a good compromise if you want to get into some technical stuff, bigger jumps, a more plush ride, want to pedal a little more, have a bit less nimble manuevarability and pay a bigger price tag to get good components and more maintenence.

Specialized, gary fisher are real good for the price, come with decent components and require little maintenence great for recreational bikers. If money is not a problem Santa Cruz produces great bikes. Some people love Cannondale and Rockey mountains, but others do not.

So it really depends what you want to do with the bike, I highly doubt you want a cycle cross.

Good luck
 

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Forget spending $2,000 if you're just looking for something to cruise around on and/or a good, comfortable fitness bike as your post seems to indicate. $500-$750 will get you a very capable hardtail (i.e. cruising commuter trails up to and including cross country racing but not serious ski resort style 50 mph downhill runs) with a decent front suspension. Bike brands don't really matter much until you get into the different full suspension designs. Find something that fits well.
 

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Orthie251 said:
Check out the Cannondale Bad Boy Ultra. It has a hardtail mountain bike frame with a front shock that is easily locked out for street riding, disc brakes and road wheels, which makes it excellent to take on the road or street. If you buy an extra set of mountain bike wheels and unlock the front shock, you have a full blown mountain bike hardtail. The handling is impeccable. It goes for about $1300 and expect to pay around $150 - $300 for a set of not too fancy mountain bike wheels. It will give you the best of both worlds. I own one that I use mainly to commute to work, but it also doubles as a hardtail when I don't want to ride my dual suspension bike.
i concur.
you don't want full susp and cannondale makes nice solid frames
 

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rjsunthar said:
Do you have preconcieved notions on a hardtail vs full suspension: I heard that full suspension would be great for mountain biking, but for ordinary biking, it just makes the bike heavier....right?
it also has the effect of sapping energy when you put a lot of downward force on the bike (ie when pedaling), and adds weight, makes the bike need more maintenance, and adds a lot to the price tag, so you end up paying more for a bike with the same components.
 
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