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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm looking for something, but don't know exactly what it is yet. I'd like a rigid, chromoly bike that's simple, durable, nimble, and playful. Something that's comfortable for cruising around town, but I could also take on trails and ride at the pump track to work on my bike handling skills. I don't ride park or DJ, but would dabble if I had a capable whip

I like the idea of a 24" BMX, but I tried one recently and it felt too small and riding it hurt my lower back.

I'm looking into a rigid 26" DJ bike, but am concerned there won't be enough seat tube for a comfortable riding position off the pump track. See aforementioned lower back pain.

The other bikes I'm considering are a Surly 1x1 or 26" Redline Monocog. These would fill the "townie" bike role very well, but I wonder if they'd be as flickable and playful as a DJ/park bike.

Decisions, decisions.
 

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Your range of intended use and wants is quite wide so you're going to have compromises. I'm assuming since you're trying to do 'all in one' your budget is limited. Anyway, there's a lot of info on trail hardtail mtbs...so I'm going to highlight a more DJ one:

https://www.harobikes.com/mtb/bikes/freestyle-mtb/steel-reserve-1-1-2013

I've seen these go cheap. No direct experience.
 

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On One makes some bikes that might work for you.

You will have to make compromises, though. A true dj bike will be crap for an xc ride. You may consider something like a hardtail with a slacker headtube. It won't be xc geometry, but will be rideable. It also won't be a dirt jump bike, but it should be something you can toss around.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the comments

I already have a commuter cyclocross and a 29er hardtail, so what I'm looking for is a "play" bike that's minimalist and smaller. I love the idea of the 24" wheel size, but it may not be what's best. I need to ride more bikes and find out.
 

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Just buy an old stumjumper, hardrock (something like that - 26" mtb) convert it to SS and put whatever handlebars meet your needs. There are a bunch on ebay or CL.
 

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How about the Santa Cruz Jackal? Buy the frame and build with the rigid fork? With a long seat post it would work.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I test-rode a 24" Diamondback Session Pro with 26" fork and low-rise bars. The bike felt too small (IIRC the TT length is 21.25") so perhaps a BlkMrkt Contraband or NS Capital, which have 22" toptubes, would be a better fit. I'm very attracted to the idea of 24" wheels and haven't quite given up on them in favor of the 26" It's also possible I just don't know yet how these bikes are supposed to fit since I don't have any BMX/DJ/Park experience. The seller of the Diamondback was at least 5" taller than I and he didn't have trouble with comfort.
 

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Check out GT's big boy BMXrs,

Big BMX Bikes / BMX Bikes / GT Bicycles / The Official Site of GT Bicycles

And a used one on local CL here,

GT Performer 26"

And I can't support the idea of getting an old Rockhopper/Stumpjumper/Hardrock for the intended use. They are tough but they aren't that tough. The forks won't last and if you replace with a super tough fork the frame will go. If you don't jump them they are fine but jumping kills them pretty quick.
 

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Sounds like you'd like something along the style of an old Evil Sovereign, Transition ToP, or Sinster Ridge or Commencal Meta (to name a few ) sounds like it could be up your alley - good mix of trail-worthyness and mess-around-ability.

Check out the Urban/DJ subforum - you should be able to find a bunch more recent suggestions.
 
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