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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Please help me find a great bike! I want to get outside and ride soon! This cold weather is killing me! I'm new here and new to bikes that are of this caliber. Thanks guys! I'm looking forward to all input!!

1) Your budget. How much do you have to spend on the bicycle (not including accessories such as helmet, gloves and other accessories).

500-1000. More like 800 to be a bit more specific.

2) What bikes, if any, are you already considering? (Please try to limit the selection to a handful if at all possible, and provide links to those bikes. Remember, we don't always know the exact specs of all the bikes out there!)

I don't know. This is why I'm here.

3) What type of riding do you intend to do? (e.g. Cross Country, Freeride, Downhill, paved paths)

Trail Riding - Dirt, Streams, Wooded Areas, Trails

4) Do you have a preference over a hardtail or full suspension?

I don't know which would be best for me? Maybe the next question will help with that.


5) Age, weight and height. (In many instances very important for a variety of reasons).

28. I'm about 220-250 I think at 6 foot tall.

6) What sources will you consider buying from? (e.g. Your Local Bike Shop, online vendors, or used bike sources such as mtbr classifieds, craigslist, ebay and others)

I'll buy from anywhere as long as the used bikes are in very good to mint condition.


7) Do you want people to offer you alternative suggestions to issues such as budget, bikes already considered, and sources?

Sure.
 

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brittonal said:
Would anyone else like to share information with the new guy? Maybe reasons?
Okay, I'll add my two cents, but understand that my experience is 10 years old and the reason I'm browsing this forum is I am looking for a new bike myself and have been out of the scene for a while.

$800 kind of limits your selections to a new, lower-end hardtail or the used market. Nothing wrong with used, but since my mechanical skills are limited to cleaning and adjusting the drive train and shifters, I am looking at a new bike with a warranty from a LBS (local bike shop). Nothing wrong with a hardtail either, but I prefer a full-suspension bike because it allows me to feel more confident on descents. I don't do big drops, but suspension on both ends soaks up the bumps better than my arms and legs can, so the wheels stay "hooked up" longer. That gives me better control, especially under braking. But hardtails are lighter at the same price point, and mechanically simpler, so they're easier to maintain, too.

The other poster recommended a Specialized Rockhopper. That line has been around forever (I actually have a '92 Rockhopper Comp that I converted to a commuter/beater bike and still gets ridden regularly). The new bike has a basic suspension fork with lockout, so you can ride it like a rigid bike on the street and on climbs without getting "pedal bob," which robs you of pedaling efficiency and feels like walking on a trampoline. You also get mechanical disc brakes. Top bikes get hydraulic disc brakes, so I'm going to assume they're better :) I'm sure they're comparable to good rim brakes, so they'll probably stop you when you need them. The difference is probably how they feel, which is important when you're trying to control brake pressure to maintain traction while slowing.

Everything else about the bike is pretty basic -- for $800, you're not going to get anything exotic -- but if you're a new rider, it's not a bad idea to just get something that fits and get out on the trails.

Speaking of fit, this is very important. If you're really a newbie, the only real dimension that matters is the seat-to-pedal distance. Get that wrong and you could cause some knee pain. Everything else, you'll learn what seat-to-bar distance and bar height you like from trial and error. This is one reason to buy from a LBS. They'll have the same bike in several sizes, so you can get a good fit. You can also try different brands/models in your price range and compare them side-by-side. Even if the seat-to-pedal distance is the same on different bikes, their frame geometry will make them feel different. If you're going the used route, bring a knowledgeable friend who can make sure your seat-to-pedal distance is in the ballpark.

HTH,
MTB
 
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