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New to MTB. Not looking for high end carbon. I'm a heavier rider 230lbs. Need to learn skills and see how much riding I will actually do. Going with full suspension based on recommendations. I live in Maine, trails here can be open in the winter. Other option would be a fat tire bike. But not sure if that will as much fun or used as much as a FS MTB.

Open to other suggestions as well. LBS has Ripley AF - Ibis Cycles Inc. but that will blow the budget and I'll spend more time working 2nd job to pay for it than I will riding.


 

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If you can swing it, get the Ibis. Great bike, great components, 29er, and best of all - it's in stock. They have been extremely hard to find the last couple of months. Read the reviews, people love this bike.

The other two seem okay, but older geo and not great components at that price point. If this is your first full suspension, they may work for a bit, but if you're like most you'll be looking to change it up and upgrade in no time. Save yourself a step and get the Ripley.
 
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Polygon because the suspension you can get parts for is better than the suspension you cannot. The Ibis is a nice bike, but not worth having to work a second job. If you are going to stretch your budget more, get the T8 with Fox and SLX, but again, I would not push yourself into a position of having to get a second job, just not worth it. Make sure you have enough money in your budget for a helmet, gloves, and shorts, as well as a bottle of chain lube and water bottle ($200 will more than cover).
 

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I’m 5’11” 230 and ride a large Abajo Peak. The bike rocks and handles everything I throw at it. When I bought the bike, I paid extra to upgrade the brakes from Levels to 4 piston Guides. Then last month after a year and some heavy riding I replaced the wheels. The suspension is fine and there is plenty of parts out there for it. I’ve thought about upgrading it, but I can not see a big return on investment.

The best thing about buying from Fezzari over Polygon, is US based service. Their customer service is fantastic and the few warranty issues I had were dealt with very well.
 
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