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New ML7 or Manic?

1577 Views 16 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  ssorgs
I have an opportunity to buy either - both new-LBS leftovers - a 2006 ML7 or 2007 Mantic, both at the same price and with a SC32 fork; 120mm vs. 130mm of travel. Other than a few on-line test reviews, there is little detail available on these bikes though I don't mind being different as they are rather exotic/botique and well spec'd (SRAM 0/9). The former appears XC and the latter all mountain/trail is about all I know other than the former is older design while the latter is newer.

I came off of an older Stumpjumper FSR XC Comp (turned well, flickable), then recently a Felt Virtue 3 (climbed/descended very well and stable), and ride every other day for 5-8 miles each for the exercise and fun in the SF Bay area, though I may move back to the New Mexico desert in the future. I am 56 YO with a body on the decline though healthy and trim, and use riding and good eating habits to stay that way.

Both of these are more bike than I need and deserve though are quite intriguing and was wondering if any of you can offer any advice, especially the differences between the two before I lay out some cash. I can go either way, and have ridden the ML only in the parking lot.

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do you mean the ml7/2 or ml7/3 or ml7/5?
and the other bike would be the MATIC?

the ml7/ (2 or 3) has 4" in the rear, the ml7/5 and matic 5" - if i remember correctly, the matic is a renamed 7/5 with slight geometry changes to optimize it for the SC32.

the matic frame is certainly the most recent frame, probably has the most useful geometry, may also be the lightest of all the frames, has the shock body built into the rear triangle and is the most "upgradable" ...

I own a Matic and a ML8 and have ridden a ML7.5 so have some insight but not having ridden a ML7 I am not fully qualified to weigh in.

The ML7 has better tubing than the Matic I believe unless the Matic is the blue frame which uses the higher end tubing because apparently they had some leftover and wanted to use it up. > ML7 +1 unless the Matic's frame is Blue then Tie

ML7 = 4.5" of travel vs 5" for the Matic > My vote is the Matic +1

I believe the Matic has a better/upgraded rear damper over the ML7 > Matic +1

The ML7 was likely welded in the US and the Matic was welded in East Asia > Your call I could care less where something is built

The rest is aesthetics and build kit. Tires and wheels are important etc..

Which one do you like is probably the most important factor both are great bikes
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Go with the Matic. Stiffer, more travel, better rear damper. ML7.5 = Matic.

Not all ML7s were made in the US, only the early versions which had the 'better tubing'. ML7s are 100mm in the rear & work Perfectly with the SC32.
ragetty said:
do you mean the ml7/2 or ml7/3 or ml7/5?
and the other bike would be the MATIC?

the ml7/ (2 or 3) has 4" in the rear, the ml7/5 and matic 5"

the matic frame is the most recent frame, most useful geometry, the lightest of all the frames, has the shock body built into the rear triangle, the most "upgradable"
I don't know nor do they (have the manual which could) say which ML7/X it is; I take it may be the 3 since 2006 could have been the last year for the ML? though thanks for the logic on how to determine the travel.

Both look to have the same or similar integrated/rear-triangle shock me. The ML has rebound damping like I've never seen in the bikes of my price-comfort range; just like a dirt bike.

Perhaps I should have clarified: the ML-7 is local and the Matic is not and very distant though still a bike shop meaning I am not able to put my eyes/hands on it.

The Mantic is blue; I've read it is a teal in the flesh.
banks said:
Go with the Matic. Stiffer, more travel, better rear damper.

ML7s are 100mm in the rear & work Perfectly with the SC32.
So far this is where I'm at:

ML has a one- or two-tier-higher build
Matic has a better frame.
ML is local
Matic will cost another 8% for handling & shipping

I hope not to over analyze this like other purchases; I'm sure either one will be better than what I had before yet it needs to be as it will be with me for a long time.
Just in case your new to Maverick products and this forum I would consider strongly Banks recommendation he knows as much about Mavericks as anybody out there....
My vote would be for the Matic. I have a ML7 (3?) and a 7/5. The older frame has the bolted connections in the rear triangle which are not as stiff. I also believe the Matic has a slacker head angle.

I also second that Banks' recommendation carries a lot of weight around here.

Happy trails
Need more info to make a clearer decision. If the ML7 has an older build kit & used, the Matick is new but 8%, hmmm. Used=no warranty. New=new bikes Rock!

Hey, who called me fat??

Happy Happy Holidays!
I've not ridden the Matic but have owned both the ML-7 & currently the Durance. I believe the Matic is close in geometry #'s to the Durance - slightly longer but fit issues are close. Made in the US, made over seas, I've sold & ridden both & really don't notice a difference in the tubing's effect on performance.

In 2001, after riding it at Interbike, I got the original ML-7. When the updated monolink & air shock (7.3) hit the streets, I put both on & it took an already sweet ride & greatly improved it. Unfortunately, in '03 I busted my C-1 vertebrae & a few years later the low racy fit I had on the ML-7 was getting me to rethink fit issues as my neck & nerves running down into my hands weren't happy. In '07 I reluctantly got a Durance because the taller front end of the 140mm travel fork vs 100mm on the ML-7 brought the bars up ~35mm on a bike designed around this change. Had I tried to raise the front end on the ML-7 to accommodate my bodies needs I would have compromised the performance of the bike by throwing off my center of mass location or over slacking the head angle.

I'm a 51 y.o. wiry, racer type always looking for an edge. I love to climb & push the limits. I said reluctantly because every all mountain bike I had previously tested in Vegas (Mav's included) made me feel like PeeWee Herman or the Wicked Witch of the West...far more upright than my racy ML-7 fit & feeling out of touch with the trail. I figured my long term comfort was more important than satisfying my Walter Mitty-isms. The surprise is that, despite sitting more upright, the Durance climbs way better than the ML-7 on techy steep climbs. The stiffer rear end is immediately evident. And once you find it's sweet spot, you just place the front end where you want to go & it does. Fast, tight single track you have to push the front end in to the trail as you are exiting a turn to keep the bike from feeling too light as you straighten out.

My son rides the ML-7 so we swap bikes every now & then. I get that same smile but the fit & performance of the Durance takes it to the next level. :yesnod:
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banks said:
Need more info to make a clearer decision. If the ML7 has an older build kit & used, the Matick is new but 8%, hmmm. Used=no warranty. New=new bikes
This should help:

2006 ML7: I went to the LBS this afternoon but missed their doors closing by 30 minutes, so I could not determine if the shock is bolted; let's assume it is and the last year of that model (ML7/3?)

It is brand new; never used other than my lame parking lot test and perhaps by a few others intrigued by USD forks, CNC'd hubs, and the unusual shock (and top-of-the-line build kit). By the manner it is being sold, it can be had without sales tax, which is over 9% where I live, thoiugh I have to buy it within 24 hours. I like the idea of it coming from a legitimate and physically-close LBS, warrantied; one who can help me if need be.

2007 Matic: would come from Canada and therefore not taxed (until our lovely civil servants find out how to tax/enforce internet sales - coming to your state soon!) although taxed at the border when passing thru.

It is also new and would be bought from a dealer though he said it is not warrantied!? Weird. It is a floor model. I like the rigid shock mounting and the good things you guys are saying about it being a better geometry.

I can go either way as they are separated by $100 in the end. The only difference is one is more XC and was at the end of its development; the other closer and more trail/AM and at the beginning of its development?

My only reservation is once I drive it off the lot there goes my last chance and it will stay with me until I'm too old to pedal and retire from MTBing; this has to be my last one.

I really appreciate all the suggestions. Keep them coming.

Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night.
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All ML7s have the bolted rear shock to the rear triangle. ML7.5/Matic, Durance & ML8 have the shock body welded to the rear triangle; much stiffer!
If the dealer says it comes without warranty and it's a new bike; something is not right, but the warranty is with Maverick and all you need is the receipt of the bike purchased new.
The development is the same, all have the MonoLink! The more travel with a Maverick, the less chain growth; my ML8 climbs hands down better then my ML7!
I am still standing firm with the Matic choice, as you say it's the last one.
I ended up finding a (poor-man's Maverick) Palomino at a price I could not pass on; this economy is sure hurtin' sellers.

My backup was another deal on a Matic, and since my son was with me on the test rides - I am trying to be a good example of prudent buying these days - I could not justify spending the extra dough at over 2x more. If I end up not liking the Klein ad there's a big difference found in the Maverick then falling back on the Matic would be a go.

Thanks for all the suggestions.
When you need the black Maverick Monolink deKlein kit, email me I have one in stock.
It came with the Maverick link installed (and SC32 fork); otherwise it may not have been worth buying it. Thanks, though.
Congrats on the new ride, sounds like you got quite a deal on it!
Year of the 7/5?

FWIW, I think 2006 was the only actual model year for the 7/5 (7.3 went thru 05 and Matic/Durance started 07). So coulda been a 7/5.

Only difference between 7/5 and Matic is the Matic has a slightly steeper head angle and different color/finish options.
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