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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was an avid runner, but due to boredom and sore knees I have decided to throw myself into the world of mtn bikes. I am quiet tall (6'4") and of all the bikes I find the 29ers the most agreeable. I plan on doing roads and light/intermediate trails to start as it has been years since I rode. Most of the 29ers are pushing my price range and the guy at the LBS put me on a Haro ally ss-loved the feel, the disc brakes, the weight and not having to think about gears but I am worried about my abilities uphills with the ss and on the trails with the rigid forks...so in your expert opinions, what to do? are there any good geared 29ers under/at $1000?

appreciate any input
 

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is buachail foighneach me
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in addition to those listed above, you might want to keep an eye out for a used bike in the crassifrieds here or on fleabay. or craigslist if it's active in your area. via that route you should be able to find something decent, in your budget, and with probably some better componentry than you would find on a new bike in that price range. it's no different than buying a used car. do your research, ask alot of questions, test ride if you can.
 

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I've got bad knees that don't like running. Riding my bikes - either geared or SS - is normally pain-free. Still, to side with TFitz, starting out with a geared bike might make for a gentler transition into the sport. Rigid fork is another story. There are deals to be had on new and used forks, so if you decide on a bike spec'd with a rigid fork you can always upgrade later. I'd put more emphasis on finding the frame that fits the best, get your position dialed in, and focus on keeping your knees happy.
 

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Stayin' Puft
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Hmm...I would look at transitioning from running to cycling on a singlespeed as potentially smoother than going to a geared bike. The out-of-the-saddle climbing position you spend lots of time in on a singlespeed is a similar motion to running, without the impact. When you run, you have to push harder to go uphill, and it is easier (but a little more joint-stress) to go downhill...sort of like a singlespeed...there is no gear shifter when you run but your body. I run a little bit for winter fitness and cyclocross, so I do have some idea that I am not just making this up. :)

Plus you don't have to think about shifting and learn how to adjust and maintain derailleurs and shifters. You will likely get a higher quality bike at the same price point if you are not sinking money into gears. So there is some Single Speed Kool-Aid, take it or leave it. Just giving the alternate opinion to the other replies above, you need to make your own choice and test ride a comparable bike with derailleurs. I am roughly the same height so you are right on in choosing a 29" wheel...shop for the highest quality bike you can find with reasonably light wheels and tires. Enjoy!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
thanks for the input guys
I just found a bike for sale on this site that sounds like it might be a good deal.
says 2007 gary fisher rig (not sure if i could find one locally to ride that is comparable though)
SIZE XL
REBA SL FORK WITH LOCKOUT
BONTRAGER MUSTANG DISC WHEELS
ERGON GRIPS
STYLO SS CRANKS
SURLY 20T COG
AVID BB7 DISC BRAKES
$750 shipped to my door
?-good deal + could I put gears on it if i pleased
 

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Some bikes - the Redlne Monocog Flight can be run geared or SS. If you get one as a SS - I'd suggest gearing it low - 32x20-22ish... depending on local trails - I know the Ashville area has some big climbs. changing it over to geared (1x9) would involve another investment (rear wheel, cassette, rear derailleur, shifter, chain & cables/housing).

I'd say the issue with your knees running may be an issue riding a SS but a good bike fit (worth twice the $ from a good lbs) should help as Wormburner said. A good shop will take at least an hour to properly fit a bike - I've seen roadie shops take 3 hours on bike fittings.

Some may scoff at this but I'd go so far as to say that paying extra to get the bike at a shop that fit's you properly will save you in the long run. Big box bike stores will tell you they''ll give you lifetime tune-ups... give me a good bike fit over that any time. A good shop will swap out a stem after a week or so at no extra cost as long as it hasn't been scratched up, they'll gladly change the spacers on the steerer, re-adjust saddle height and fore-aft position (this one is crucial in preventing knee problems)... all for a week or more after you get the bike.

Do some research on bike fitting (just search the forums you'll have enough reading for years!) so you can better understand what to look for. Feel free to PM me if I can help.

Get a good bike fit and try SS - you'll be a happy man!

Best of luck and let us know what you end up getting.

S
 

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bobthalamu said:
thanks for the input guys
I just found a bike for sale on this site that sounds like it might be a good deal.
says 2007 gary fisher rig (not sure if i could find one locally to ride that is comparable though)
SIZE XL
REBA SL FORK WITH LOCKOUT
BONTRAGER MUSTANG DISC WHEELS
ERGON GRIPS
STYLO SS CRANKS
SURLY 20T COG
AVID BB7 DISC BRAKES
$750 shipped to my door
?-good deal + could I put gears on it if i pleased
ussuming the bike isn't beat to hell, its a pretty good deal. is there a lbs where you can check out an xl rig (or any fisher 29er) to check fit?
running with knee pain: i quit playing lacrosse last year because by halftime my knees would be killing me. since then i have put a few hundred miles on my ss with no pain. i ride 2-3 days a week on ss or geared bike with no issues at all.
 

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I'd also recommend Redline Flight or D460. The Flight is more versatile with the slider dropouts but it comes out-of-the-box as a single speed. The D460 is a 1x9 which will give you enough gears for nearly every trail you will encounter. The 1x9 setup also has a SS feel which you already indicate that you liked. Both of these bikes are well constructed and have excellent handling characteristics.

I do a little running as well during the winter months and I have found that cycling really complements running. If my legs are sore from a run there's nothing like a bike ride to clear out my running soreness. Welcome to the wonderful world of mountain biking.
 

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Yep

canyonrat said:
Hmm...I would look at transitioning from running to cycling on a singlespeed as potentially smoother than going to a geared bike. The out-of-the-saddle climbing position you spend lots of time in on a singlespeed is a similar motion to running, without the impact. When you run, you have to push harder to go uphill, and it is easier (but a little more joint-stress) to go downhill...sort of like a singlespeed...there is no gear shifter when you run but your body. I run a little bit for winter fitness and cyclocross, so I do have some idea that I am not just making this up. :)

Plus you don't have to think about shifting and learn how to adjust and maintain derailleurs and shifters. You will likely get a higher quality bike at the same price point if you are not sinking money into gears. So there is some Single Speed Kool-Aid, take it or leave it. Just giving the alternate opinion to the other replies above, you need to make your own choice and test ride a comparable bike with derailleurs. I am roughly the same height so you are right on in choosing a 29" wheel...shop for the highest quality bike you can find with reasonably light wheels and tires. Enjoy!
I totally agree.

PF
 

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I do the kinda riding you describe.I find the D440 quite perfect; doesn't need a thing. (well, OK, I did put a Thompson seat post and a Brooks B17 on it, but that's because the stock seatpost was a bit too short for me). You don't really need a triple crankset, or suspension fork, for the kinda riding I do. The D440 is inexpensive, but it's not a cheapo bike-it's a solid, quality steel ride that you may find pleases you over the long term.
 

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suggested bike

my next bike will be a redline d440, so this may be biased.

steel frame with 8 gears and rigid fork. if you want to try ss, leave it in one gear and try it. if that isnt for you shift away, you only have the rear to deal with. as far as the fork, for the road and mild trails, riding will be fine and climb well. when you start riding more difficult and bumpy trails, get a suspension fork.
 

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finsh last post..........

as far as the knees, soreness stopped me from running some time ago. did some ss training this summer, 2-3 times a week. definitely improved power and climbing, but made the knee sore when really hammering or if single training back to back days.

mri monday, follow up friday, well see what the dr thinks, maybe a long winter for me.

ride the redline, i was surprised how well it rode and felt, been riding 26" all these years. it is also fairly cheap, found 08's around $500 where i live.
 

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mik13 said:
if you want to try ss, leave it in one gear and try it..
This does not equal riding a singlespeed.:madman: :nonod:

Sort of like riding and trying not to coast does not equal riding a fixed gear.

Sort of like riding a locked out suspension fork does not equal riding a rigid fork.

Just...not...the same.:nono:

Plus...you have to clean the derailleur...listen to the awful chain slap when when you actually ride over bumpy things...lug around a couple pounds of cassette, derailleur, shifter, cable, and extra chain metal.:cryin:

Hey...didn't I already mention the Kool Aid? It is way too late for me... ;)
 

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Fwiw

bobthalamu said:
I was an avid runner, but due to boredom and sore knees I have decided to throw myself into the world of mtn bikes. I am quiet tall (6'4") and of all the bikes I find the 29ers the most agreeable. I plan on doing roads and light/intermediate trails to start as it has been years since I rode. Most of the 29ers are pushing my price range and the guy at the LBS put me on a Haro ally ss-loved the feel, the disc brakes, the weight and not having to think about gears but I am worried about my abilities uphills with the ss and on the trails with the rigid forks...so in your expert opinions, what to do? are there any good geared 29ers under/at $1000?

appreciate any input
Might look at the Marin Alpine
http://www.marinbikes.com/2008/us/bikes/specs_alpine_trail_29er_c1.php
 

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I just started my 30th year as a runner. I got my first real road bike in 1995 to race triathlons. Getting your first real bicycle is always shocking when it comes to price. I'd say that you should stretch your budget as far as you can. You'll get a lighter, better bicycle that you will be happy with for a longer time.
So anyway; four years ago I had surgery on both knees which led to running on the trails, which led me to mountain biking. I would say to stay away from singlespeeds and rigid front ends. The first one will beat up your knees and the second will beat your shoulders. Of the bikes listed above I'd go for the Gary Fisher. At just over $900, it looks like a deal. If you can stretch your budget to the next level bike at around $1200, you'll be doing even getter.
Are you a member of a running club? Most dealers give 10% to members of runing clubs and bike clubs. Check around.
 

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As someone already said, it might be a good idea to go for gears, if you have a problem with the knees. When I started singlespeeding last summer, my left knee was quite sore for a few weeks before it adapted to the different strain. Using gears is much easier on the knees.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I've been to every LBS within 50 miles and none have a 29er in an xl frame arggg. All come off like they might get an xl in a few months all said they would order an xl for me, but untried and I must buy. Tried a gf cobia in 19in...ok said they'd order me an xl one for $1049 no interest for 12 mts sounds like a good deal but like to try first. Seen a Surly Karate monkey built on ebay for 1k (with extras like rigid fork (manitou minute 29er fork on it), extra crank, clip pedals, size 13 shoe..my size too) + few others like mary xc for the same all in xl, hate to do this but looking like I may have too.
 

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i also unicycle
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as someone who is also 6'4 an XL 29er fits pretty well from almost all brands. do the lbs in your area have a 19" or L 29er? it should feel a little small, and a competent lbs worker will confirm that a 21 or XL would fit great.
 
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