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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
How long should I expect my bike to last?
I currently have a 2005 Kona Coiler that I've been riding since '05.
It has a Marzocchi Z1 light fork and a new Fox Vanilla R shock. It
basically has had all of its parts replaced at one point, and the only
thing that remains stock is the frame itself. I love the Coiler's
tough-as-nails frame and its ability to handle anything I can throw at
it. I have it to a point where it rides just how I want it to. About a
year and a half ago, I got in a bad wreck and the bike came out a little
bruised. It has a few dents in the frame, but I've been riding it ever
since then. Should I be worried about the frame? If so, what kind of
bike should I look for? I ride on the East Coast, so its all about quick
tight trails with short steep climbs and downhills. I also go to
freeride parks occasionally, so it has to be able to take big hits and
drops without missing a beat. Basically I'm either looking to keep my
bike and keep upgrading it, or replace it with something that will fill
its shoes and then some. I've been looking at the Pivot Firebird and
Santa Cruz Nomad lately, and they both seem to catch my eye. Anyone have any recommendations? Thanks-Dave
 

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bi-winning
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11,109 Posts
After a few years or riding, my experience has been as noted below.

My first aluminum XC hardtail (2002 model year) lasted three years. Fatigue crack.
My first aluminum XC full suspension bike (2005 model year) lasted 4 years. Fatigue crack.

My aluminum CX bike (2007 model year) has lasted three years and counting.
My cromoly rigid bike (NOS 2000 model year) has lasted one year and counting.
My carbon / aluminum XC full suspension bike (2005 model year, warranty replacemnt) has lasted 1.5 years and counting.

So, if I ride an aluminum MTB a lot, I expect to get 3-5 years out of it. I weigh ~155 lbs.

Inspect your frame for cracks regularly. If you do so, there is a good chance you will notice a problem before the frame totally fails and leaves you stranded.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Let me rephrase: Would it seem logical to keep dumping more money into this bike? I need new cranks as one is bent, the fork will probably need some work soon, it currently has a chainguide and I've been thinking of putting a dual chainring setup on it. Is it more worth it to cut my losses and just go with new technology that supposedly performs better than my current setup, or the hang on to this thing and ride it until it can't ride anymore? I'm also considering buying a frame and using all my existing components to build a new bike up. I saw a good deal on the 2009 Kona Coilair frame on Wheelworld.com.
 

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Former Bike Wrench
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15,976 Posts
mtnbikecrazy55 said:
it should last more than 5 years....
Well the Stinky and Coiler frame are pretty bomber, but longevity is dependent on maintenance and riding style. Damage to the frame from crashes may reduce the longevity. That is not a reflection of the manufacturer as much as the rider's care of the bike.

Here is the warranty statement from Kona on 2005 frames

Kona frame warranty is outlined in detail in the Kona Owner's Manual. It does not cover failure due to accidents, stunt riding, racing, use of double clamp forks (except for DH & OB 6 models), or commercial use. It covers the original owner's use for 4 years from the date of purchase (1 year for DH & OB models). Ownership must be registered with Kona to validate the warranty. Sympathy pricing in the USA & Canada in case of accidents and other failures is available to the original owner.

The downside of most aluminum frames is that they lack much of a lifespan when subjected to offroad use. Some companies can absorb the few warranties they get with a lifetime to the original owner. Since most riders don't keep their frames long enough, they rarely have to warranty older frames. Other companies are realistic and give warranties in the 1-5 year range depending on the frame.
 
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