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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Looking to get a new 29er hardtail with a carbon frame, down to 2 options, need some help deciding.

My most typical riding use case is get out early in the morning, do 20-90 miles on a mix of paved, unpaved and maybe some foresty single-track, get back home tired and happy. Occasionally I'd visit local bike parks with kids and ride a trail with drops and curves, but I'm not good enough to ride double diamonds with crazy drops, cam do blue/green level drops.

I had a 20 year old aluminum Trek 26 hardtail which was pretty satisfactory for all my needs. Now kids growing up, need another bike.

I thought that a 29er carbon hardtail would be a good successor to my all around Trek. Budget-wise I'm looking to stay under (or around) $4k. I haven't bought a new bike in 15 years, so much has moved on, need some help deciding what will work best for my use case.

I'm down to 2 options:

1. Diamondback Sync'r Carbon: Diamondback 29 Carbon Mountain Bike | Competitive Cyclist

2. BMC Twostroke 01:

Normally BMC would be quite a bit more expensive, but there's a really great deal for one in my size at a local bike store which brings it to about same price.

Here's direct spec comparison:|w.29,bmc-twostroke-01-one-2021;*z.XL|w.29

I don't know much about either brand and I don't carr much about the looks, here's how I'm thinking about them:

Diamondback pros:
  • seems a bit sturdier, beefier frame, supposedly will last longer and handle more abuse
  • comes with integrated dropper post (I'd like to try that),
  • Fox fork has more travel and seems a bit better than BMC's SID, with continuous adjustment (just 2 mode switch on SID)
  • lifetime frame warranty (does anyone care these days?)

Diamondback cons:
  • frame made in China (is that a con?)
  • frame only accommodates up to 32t crankset. This actually would make me pedal with higher cadence to keep up with my old Trek (in its highest 44-12 gear)
  • quite heavy at 29 lbs (actually my old aluminum Trek clocks a bit under 29 lbs - same as DB!). Not sure how much of that are fork/wheels/tires/handlebar/seatpost vs frameset

BMC pros:
  • frame and many components made in Switzerland (that's a good thing, right?), frame is supposed to be better designed/of better carbon, if I understand correctly
  • 9lbs lighter out the box
  • a bit better wheelset, saddle. Carbon cranks and handlebar
  • no restriction of front sprocket size - frame can fit anything, comes with 34t out the box - will allow for same speeds as my old bike

BMC cons:
  • 100mm Rockshox SID fork (vs 140mm Fox 34 Performance on DB). I had 100mm on my Trek, but thought would be nice to have a bit more for those times I want to have fun on single-track
  • only 3 year frame warranty
  • Frame is rated to up to 110kg (242 lbs). I'm at 220, but with a backpack and a healthy meal in, can probably push the limit here
  • no true lockout on the fork - it just becomes a bit stiffer with "lock" adjustment
  • press-fit bottom bracket. Not sure if that's a con - never had to open a BB on any bike, but hear they may start creaking
  • proprietary seatpost standard (you can get a shim and fit a standard 27mm seatpost, which allows for some droppers) - concerned about reliability/creaking with the shim in
I guess I'm looking for an all-rounder bike which I'll enjoy for another 10-15 years, so I'm probably leaning towards Diamondback due to increased sturdiness, worrying that I might be dealing with ageing issues sooner on a lightweight racing bike, but I'm really on the fence here.

Realize that wheels/fork are a bit harder (more expensive) to replace than anything else, and that really the only thing I can't change about DB is the chainring clearance, so looking for your advice - what do you think would be a better pick? Is there anything I'm overlooking?

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