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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So, been looking to get back into the trail riding thing as its been almost 20 years, and was originally looking for a used bike. Not knowing if my size has changed with all these new frames out now a days I went to the local bike shop and had my eye on a Cannondale Cujo. Not wanting to spend the cash I rode the Giant Talon 3. I like the bike but decided to hold off at that time. Fast forward a few days I went to a different location for the same bike shop. They didn't have a Talon 3 in my size (L) but had the Specialized Pitch. It was matte black, and sold me more visually than anything else. I rode it at the shop and was pleased. As soon as I got home and rode it around the block a few times I started to second guess my purchase. Everything just felt cheap, even compared to my Trek w/ Rock Shox from 20 years ago.

So bottom line, I'm wondering whats the consensus?Bike shop will let me exchange and upgrade. Giant Talon 2, Talon 3, or maybe even a Cannondale Cujo. I'll also love any other suggestion in one of the lines they carry (Cannondale / Specialized / Giant) for under $1000, best bang for the buck and the lower the better that won't feel like a WalMart bike.

I'm in South Florida so the Cujo 3 may be cool for sandy and/or muddy trails. I'd make a sacrifice to spend the extra pennies and swing it especially if its gonna save me from upgrading down the road.
 

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So, been looking to get back into the trail riding thing as its been almost 20 years, and was originally looking for a used bike. Not knowing if my size has changed with all these new frames out now a days I went to the local bike shop and had my eye on a Cannondale Cujo. Not wanting to spend the cash I rode the Giant Talon 3. I like the bike but decided to hold off at that time. Fast forward a few days I went to a different location for the same bike shop. They didn't have a Talon 3 in my size (L) but had the Specialized Pitch. It was matte black, and sold me more visually than anything else. I rode it at the shop and was pleased. As soon as I got home and rode it around the block a few times I started to second guess my purchase. Everything just felt cheap, even compared to my Trek w/ Rock Shox from 20 years ago.

So bottom line, I'm wondering whats the consensus?Bike shop will let me exchange and upgrade. Giant Talon 2, Talon 3, or maybe even a Cannondale Cujo. I'll also love any other suggestion in one of the lines they carry (Cannondale / Specialized / Giant) for under $1000, best bang for the buck and the lower the better that won't feel like a WalMart bike.

I'm in South Florida so the Cujo 3 may be cool for sandy and/or muddy trails. I'd make a sacrifice to spend the extra pennies and swing it especially if its gonna save me from upgrading down the road.
Take the Cujo out for a test ride, looks like a fun bike. Also, check out the new Giant Fathom 2. It has an air fork and is a solid bike. My friend just bought one and loves it!

https://www.giant-bicycles.com/us/fathom-29-2


It's better to spend a bit more now than have to upgrade later. Good luck!
 

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The 27.5+ will be better for a broader range of conditions But-

Cujo 3-
Fork-
SR Suntour XCR LO Boost 27+, 120mm travel, 15mm thru axle, Tapered Alloy Steerer, External Lockout, COIL SPRING
That means this fork has a spring in one side and no rebound damping adjustability.
It also has plastic bushings inside instead of metal. The fork was designed for bike paths and dirt roads only.

The Cujo 2 has a usable Rockshox air fork meant for trails with rocks and bumps.
Beast of the East 3 would also work.
Or we can recommend a bike at a discount through the Diamondback Corp Sponsorship Program. 16 Mason at $800 or Comp.at 1200 with a much better fork. Fox 34. 27.5+
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
good info, thanks fellas. No way I'm gonna jump over $1000 and the more that I think about it, I need to get real on my expectations and riding time. That being said, I think the Cujo is going to be out. Which leaves the bike I bought, Specialized Pitch vs the bike I should have bought Giant Talon 3 vs. $150 bucks more for the Talon 2. Are any of these upgradable should I get more involved in the sport.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thats what I thought the guy at the first shop told me. When I called the other day to make sure I'd be able to swap the bike out the dude who answered said spring when asked. At this point I'm leaning towards the Giant with the thinking it may be more upgradeable.
 

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I'm more familiar with Giants rode bikes but it looks like they did the same thing that they did with their Defy line and did some re branding with their 2017 bikes. The 2016 Talon 2 is better spec'd than the Talon 2 2017. Now instead of there being 4 versions of the Talon there are only 2. The 2016 is also a 3 x 11 and the 2017 is a 2 x 9.

I would confirm if it's a 2016 so you know exactly what you are getting. You will probably get a good discount as well since it's not the newest model year. The 2016 had an MSRP of $1,100 and the $2017 and MSRP of $710.00.
 

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what model year is the talon 2? The 2016 models actually had an air fork on their Talon 2.
Good advice to get the '16 with air fork if it's available. I have an older version - 2012 Talon 1 29er. I bought it very slightly used. The only thing holding it back was the XCT fork. I swapped it for a Rockshox Gold air fork and it's so much better! Get the best bike you can afford and enjoy!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thank Rhody....so no more 2016's available. I had already bought the Specialized Pitch so I wouldn't be able to get my money back only exchanges or else I probably would have shopped used. I ended up getting the 2017 Giant Talon 2 in Large. The large on the Giant felt much more my size than the L on the Specialized. Salesman said the frame on the Giant's are slightly larger. It didn't have the air fork but I couldn't swing the extra $200. I am not so sure I am going to stick with it but overall I think I am happy with my decision, I made sure to ride the crap out of it in the parking lot. Good staff at Bike America - West Palm Beach, they were patient with my indecisiveness. I think I was sold on the look of the Specialized originally and the performance of the bike didn't live up to the brand once I got it home.

First upgrade....pedals, the ones they through on there are way too small for my big ole size 14's.


Sizes
S, M, L, XL
ColorsBlue, Red
FrameALUXX-grade aluminum
ForkSR Suntour XCM w/ hydraulic lockout & preload adjuster, 100mm travel
ShockN/A
HandlebarGiant Connect Trail, 31.8mm
StemGiant Sport
SeatpostGiant Sport, 30.9mm
SaddleGiant Connect Upright
PedalsMTB Caged
ShiftersShimano Alivo
Front DerailleurShimano Deore
Rear DerailleurShimano Deore
BrakesShimano M315, hydraulic disc, 160mm

Brake LeversShimano M315
CassetteShimano HG400 12x36, 9-speed
ChainKMC X9
CranksetFSA Comet, 24/38
Bottom BracketSealed Cartridge, Threaded
RimsGiant Alloy, Double wall
HubsAlloy, 32h
SpokesStainless Steel, 14g
TiresMaxxis Ikon, 27.5x2.2, Wire
WeightThe most accurate way to determine any bike’s weight is to have your local dealer weigh it for you. Many brands strive to list the lowest possible weight, but in reality weight can vary based on size, finish, hardware and accessories. All Giant bikes are designed for best-in-class weight and ride quality.
 

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You made a good choice! The Talon is a solid bike for the price. Check out these pedals, I had them on my bike:

https://www.amazon.com/Wellgo-Magne...82&sr=1-1&keywords=Mg5+pedals#customerReviews

By the way, my nephew lives near you in Jupiter, FL. I recently shipped him my old Cannondale Jekyll mountain bike. If you see a young kid riding the trails on a bright green bike with a weird looking fork, that's him! ;)

Have fun with the new ride!
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Very close to my hometown, North Palm Beach. My parents are still there over 40 years in the same house. Back then it was a sleepy little village you can drive and set fires on the beach and plenty of sugar sand trails.....mostly for dune buggies. Not any more!

Thanks for the tip on the petals, I tried to support the local shop but didn't like their selection so off to Amazon I go.

I broke the bike in this afternoon and did about 6 miles on a baby trail in Royal Palm Beach. Took me 4 tries of falling off and almost bustin a *!$, but finally got one of the higher balance beams. My balance ain't what it used to be. I remember as a kid doing campus rides at FSU and I wouldn't think twice jumping a flight of stairs, for now I'm good bunny hopping a pebble.

I'll keep an eye out for the bright green monster!
 

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Sounds like a great place to grow up!

6 mikes is a good start. I'll have to ask my nephew where he rides. He's in the Bahamas on school break right now, poor kid, lol!

Have fun with the new toy!
 
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