Mountain Bike Reviews Forum banner
1 - 20 of 31 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
31 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey,

I haven't ridden a bicycle since I was a kid. I used to work on my bikes, build jumps, ride in the woods and all over the place as a kid. I eventually did motocross for about 15 years and haven't done anything in the last 10 years when it comes out extreme sports. Anyways, I just picked up my first "real" mountain bike, in fact my first bicycle since I was probably 13 years old. It's a 2019 Trek Marlin 5.

I was on a tight budget and didn't want to spend too much money to get into the hobby, but I wanted something that'll last, something I can upgrade if I want to and I feel like this was the perfect platform for me to get riding. It has hydraulic front brakes and a sharp looking frame with cables ran through it. The local shop had not only my size in stock, but the color I really liked too.

I went on my first ride yesterday and will be doing more today. A couple quick questions:
  • Given my motocross background, I can't seem to break the habit of sticking my leg out in corners. Is this OK or should I try to avoid this?
  • Any advice on how to prepare for climbing? I think it's a bit of me being a large man and maybe a bit out of shape when it comes to cardio…but I can't seem to even make it up some of the smaller inclines. I think a lot of this may be getting used to my gearing and bike, but I'll be practicing more today. My bike has 21 speeds (3x7). I tend to stay in the 2[SUP]nd[/SUP] large ring most of the time up front, and I know the basics (such as not to cross chain), but definitely need to learn how to shift better.
  • Lastly, does butt soreness go away? I'm a big man (250lbs, 5'11"). I lift heavy and I'm not sure if it has to do with the fact that I started riding a day after a heavy squat session but my ass was killing me even after a short time on the bike. This Trek 2019 is an awesome bike but the saddle is small. Does it fade, or should I buy a larger saddle?

Thanks again for reading!

PIC:

 

·
Bikesexual
Joined
·
7,568 Posts
Welcome, I can't help much w/the first one because I rarely do it, but the 20yr plus riders will chime in.

Climbing, just keep on climbing. It will get easier. The gears will become second nature after a while.

I say give your saddle some time. First time after 15yrs, yeah its going to hurt. Spend some decent money on Pearl Izumi cycling shorts w/chamois and that will help a lot, you can wear them under any shorts.

You can also measure your butt, and try to find a saddle that works perfect for you, but that requires some homework. Also make sure the height of the saddle is correct, but maybe your shop took care of it.

Have fun, and post some pictures in the wild. :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14,806 Posts
Everyone's butt is sore after they've been off the bike for a few months. You'll toughen up and develop the muscles and technique to take some of your weight off the saddle. It'll take a few rides then you usually won't have problems. There are different width saddles if you continue to have problems.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,754 Posts
Since you're new to riding, it would be good to learn and use the proper verb tenses.

Present tense: I ride.
Past tense: I rode.
Past perfect tense: I have ridden.
etc..

Example: "New to sport, haven't ridden in 15+ years-"
 

·
Cycologist
Joined
·
10,129 Posts
I'd say "no" on the sticking the leg out. Things are different on a bicycle, the vast majority of the weight is you, not the bike like on a motorcycle. You actually want to put your weight on the pedal (in the down position) that is on the outside of the turn. Check some youtube videos on cornering.

If you aren't making it up those climbs, are you in your lowest gear? A lot of beginners tend to fight too high of a gear. Drop down to the smallest ring up front and then work up the cassette as you need to.

Agree with the other posts on the saddle. You may need a wider one but do not go out and buy a big cushy saddle. It may feel better initially but if you are riding any distance, it will be a problem. Give your current saddle several more rides and see if it starts to feel better. I remember when I bought my first mountain bike in '94, my ass hurt for days just from the test ride in the parking lot (the shop swapped it out for a different one). Now, I ride pretty minimal saddles.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
44 Posts
I generally don't stick a leg out unless I'm in the process of really losing the front end. Keeping the feet on the pedals seems to be the way to go. But if that's how you want to go around a corner, I wouldn't say it's wrong. Just keep in mind that you're not wearing motocross boots. I broke my big toe during a dual slalom race by jamming my foot into one of the gates - ouch.

To paraphrase Greg Lemond - climbing never gets easier, you just go faster. Actually, it will get easier as you lose weight and gain cardio. Be patient, as these improvements take a long time (many months) to materialize.

Muscle soreness will usually go away with increased fitness, but you may also be able to improve matters by adjusting your position on the bike. Try moving around on the saddle during longer efforts, and don't be afraid to move the saddle fore or aft on the seatpost (just pay attention to any knee discomfort).

You'll also eventually learn how to manage your rides vs. your weight room sessions. Generally speaking, if I do a heavy leg day, I need to stay off the bike the day after or at least take it very easy. From what I've seen in my power meter data, the forces generated during a short, punchy climb are pretty much what I'd expect to exert in the weight room.

Good luck, and welcome to the sport!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
31 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks for all the replies. To the asshat who decided to be the grammar police, no one gives a **** it's the internet. Thanks for wasting my time and yours.

To everyone else, thanks for the tips and advice.

I actually stopped by my local bike shop today and purchased a few things.

#1- Looken Selle Royal Saddle, WOW. SO MUCH BETTER NOW!

#2- bike pump that is compact and mounts on my frame near water bottle

#3- saddle bag

#4- Crankbrothers multitool and spare tube, tire tools (to go in my new saddle bag lol).

#5- A small little low profile bell that mounts next to my shifter

I decided to keep rocking the plastic pedals until they break. In regards to my weight. I used to be 400lbs, I lost 150lbs by doing heavy compound lifts (powerlifting). I took up this sport as a hobby to lose weight I can't seem to lose in the gym (mostly because I hate doing cardio in the gym and looking out the window at people riding their bikes 😂). I'm sure climbing will get better in time, I've gone 4 days in a row now and each time I'm better than the last.

I definitely need to get the hang of timing the gear shifts at the appropriate time before I try to climb up the mountain and lose my momentum.

How hard can I ride this bicycle? I have some pretty intense downhill stuff and I live in British Columbia Canada so all of my trails are down mountains with lots of speed, I find myself on the brakes about 90% of the way down trying to avoid a large rock or tree stump that will send me flying over the cliff, lol.. I'm wondering how much abuse I can put on this bike?

My local shop told me that it wouldn't be worth the cost of the bike to put a single 1x11 set up on it, however, how much would it cost me to put in a hydraulic rear brake? I really love the fact that my front tire doesn't lock out, but downhill I noticed my rear tire always does. I'm assuming this is because it doesn't have hydraulic brakes?

Last question. I seem to pop my chain alot. I know it can happen when putting too much pressure on the pedals and shifting at the same time, but what if it happens randomly when I'm trying to gain speed or just notice it slips off? Thanks again everyone
 

·
Never trust a fart
Joined
·
4,543 Posts
How hard can I ride this bicycle? I have some pretty intense downhill stuff and I live in British Columbia Canada so all of my trails are down mountains with lots of speed, I find myself on the brakes about 90% of the way down trying to avoid a large rock or tree stump that will send me flying over the cliff, lol.. I'm wondering how much abuse I can put on this bike?

My local shop told me that it wouldn't be worth the cost of the bike to put a single 1x11 set up on it, however, how much would it cost me to put in a hydraulic rear brake? I really love the fact that my front tire doesn't lock out, but downhill I noticed my rear tire always does. I'm assuming this is because it doesn't have hydraulic brakes?

Last question. I seem to pop my chain alot. I know it can happen when putting too much pressure on the pedals and shifting at the same time, but what if it happens randomly when I'm trying to gain speed or just notice it slips off? Thanks again everyone
1. The bike is more XC/Light trail capable. If you are looking at pointing the bike more downhill, then you'll be getting into a more capable trail/all mountain full suspension. If you continue to ride these trails, you will exceed the capability of the Marlin 5.

2. The locking up is more directed towards finding modulation. Also it's due to the fact that you are going down steeper hills. A hydraulic brake will give you better modulation and more power than a cable actuated brake. So yes that would be a smart upgrade. Just do the front as well.

3. If it's popping off the front, it's probably due to an adjustment needed. Maybe even going as far as due to the terrain you are riding. The Marlin 5 has nothing to help with chain retention. A narrow/wide chain ring would help, but you would loose the range of the triple up front. Also a rear derailleur with a clutch would help, but then your getting into upgrading the entire drivetrain.

My advice, ride the bike till it falls apart, then invest in a nice quality bike like the Trek Fuel EX 7, or a Trek Slash. These 2 bikes sounds to be more suited towards what trails you are currently riding.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,080 Posts
Are you sure your rear brake isn’t also hydraulic?

At 250#, you might bend your rear axle on rough terrain. You have a „freewheel“ with your 7-speed set up meaning the right-rear bearing is inboard with a lot of axle unsupported.

I agree with the above... ride the **** out of it, but don’t upgrade.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
31 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
1. The bike is more XC/Light trail capable. If you are looking at pointing the bike more downhill, then you'll be getting into a more capable trail/all mountain full suspension. If you continue to ride these trails, you will exceed the capability of the Marlin 5.

2. The locking up is more directed towards finding modulation. Also it's due to the fact that you are going down steeper hills. A hydraulic brake will give you better modulation and more power than a cable actuated brake. So yes that would be a smart upgrade. Just do the front as well.

3. If it's popping off the front, it's probably due to an adjustment needed. Maybe even going as far as due to the terrain you are riding. The Marlin 5 has nothing to help with chain retention. A narrow/wide chain ring would help, but you would loose the range of the triple up front. Also a rear derailleur with a clutch would help, but then your getting into upgrading the entire drivetrain.

My advice, ride the bike till it falls apart, then invest in a nice quality bike like the Trek Fuel EX 7, or a Trek Slash. These 2 bikes sounds to be more suited towards what trails you are currently riding.
Thanks for the help. My front brakes are already hydraulic (Marlin 5 2019 features them), but my rears are not. I'll just ride the **** out of the bike this summer and see about upgrading next year if I stick with the sport and feel like my bike has taken too much of a beating.

Yes to be more specific, my chain is popping in the front not the rear. Most of the time it happens on the last chainring in front (smallest) and the largest. Doesn't happen too much on gear #2. So I can't even adjust my chain on this bike?
Are you sure your rear brake isn't also hydraulic?

At 250#, you might bend your rear axle on rough terrain. You have a „freewheel" with your 7-speed set up meaning the right-rear bearing is inboard with a lot of axle unsupported.

I agree with the above... ride the **** out of it, but don't upgrade.
The bike says 300lb weight limit, so I'm not sure if I'd do too much damage. Probably in time you're right, based on abusing it.

Since my bike is a freewheel I would need an entire new rim w/ cassette, derailleurs, chain, etc. Would I also need a crank, or would my current one work? How much would it cost to upgrade from the Tourney components to something even 1 step up, with a 1x setup? I'd be willing to spend a few hundred on something like that, if it could really transform the bike and hold me over on upgrades. I don't really plan to buy a FS bike anytime soon as I know they're about $2000 (CAD) for a decent one. What about the price of a rear Hydraulic brake?

Thanks
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,379 Posts
I didn't ride moto (cross), but grew up riding dirt bikes on trails. So I have a few comments for you on the cornering question, as I had a bit of adjusting for that as well.

About the foot out out on corners... I'd try to avoid that.

On a motocross bike, you corner by braking hard, and sliding way to the front of the seat to weight the front wheel really heavily so you don't wash out the front end.

Sticking your leg out helps you do that, as the footpegs are now way, akwardly behind where you'd want to put your foot, the leg stuck out front also helps forward weight distribution even further, and on some level, it is really just the only place to put it when you're in that position where it won't get grabbed by a rut/etc. After the apex of the turn, you're hard on the throttle, and the bike slides out from under you, as you transition your weight to the rear for traction/etc.

On a mountain bike, none of that makes sense. A mountain bike doesn't have the power to slide you to the back of the bike, and there isn't a large continuous seat to slide around on anyway. And one leg out, standing up cornering doesn't feel particularly natural (in comparison to moto style turns on a motocross bike).

I'm guessing that if you're struggling with the leg out, you're likely staying seated during corners. Its general much slower to corner like this, and in my experience, also you're much more prone to wash out the front end, as all your weight is way off the back of the bike (on the seat).

Instead, on a mountain bike, "proper" cornering, is essentially standing/crouching with your weight through the pedals, arms wide/elbows out, in kind of a pseudo "pushup" position. Ideally, this is also with the seat down (which is why dropper posts are popular) giving you space to move around on the bike, and adapt to the terrain/conditions more quickly.

Looks something like this (random google image search results). He's also leaning the bike a bit in this photo, but you can see he's kind of half crouching/standing, weight more forward, eyes up, arms wide (and inside pedal up, so it doesn't hit the ground).



It feels a bit weird at first, but it starts to make sense after a few good turns. At this point, I can't imagine how strange it would be to try to ride a mountain bike doing seated, moto style turns.

And like others, I'd probably just ride the bike as it is, and make note of the things you'd change/prefer differently in the future. At a certain point it does cost more to upgrade a bike, than it does just to sell it, and get something different that comes with all of the upgrades. And in the learning phase, you may not know what you want right away.

Like you, I got into the sport as a way to get some exersize. In my mind, its kind of like mixing something I need to do anyway (the cardio), with pleasure (the downhills). Or, how I described it to my wife. Its like I eat my veggies/main meal on the climb, and then get desert on the way down (she's a dietician... so... the analogy made sense to her).

So, instead of getting back into dirt biking like I did when I was younger, I decided to do this instead, in the attempt to stay in slightly better shape, and not look like jabba the hutt in another 10-15 years.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,010 Posts
Your bike comes with front and rear hydraulic brakes. Why do you think that the rears aren’t. The Trek specs state the bike has Tektro hydraulic brakes. I have never ever seen any bike come with hydraulic front and mechanical rear? Take a pic and post.

If for some reason your bike came with mechanical rear that was for some reason changed out at the bike shop before you bought it but that would be nuts.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
31 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
1. The bike is more XC/Light trail capable. If you are looking at pointing the bike more downhill, then you'll be getting into a more capable trail/all mountain full suspension. If you continue to ride these trails, you will exceed the capability of the Marlin 5.

2. The locking up is more directed towards finding modulation. Also it's due to the fact that you are going down steeper hills. A hydraulic brake will give you better modulation and more power than a cable actuated brake. So yes that would be a smart upgrade. Just do the front as well.

3. If it's popping off the front, it's probably due to an adjustment needed. Maybe even going as far as due to the terrain you are riding. The Marlin 5 has nothing to help with chain retention. A narrow/wide chain ring would help, but you would loose the range of the triple up front. Also a rear derailleur with a clutch would help, but then your getting into upgrading the entire drivetrain.

My advice, ride the bike till it falls apart, then invest in a nice quality bike like the Trek Fuel EX 7, or a Trek Slash. These 2 bikes sounds to be more suited towards what trails you are currently riding.
I didn't ride moto (cross), but grew up riding dirt bikes on trails. So I have a few comments for you on the cornering question, as I had a bit of adjusting for that as well.

About the foot out out on corners... I'd try to avoid that.

On a motocross bike, you corner by braking hard, and sliding way to the front of the seat to weight the front wheel really heavily so you don't wash out the front end.

Sticking your leg out helps you do that, as the footpegs are now way, akwardly behind where you'd want to put your foot, the leg stuck out front also helps forward weight distribution even further, and on some level, it is really just the only place to put it when you're in that position where it won't get grabbed by a rut/etc. After the apex of the turn, you're hard on the throttle, and the bike slides out from under you, as you transition your weight to the rear for traction/etc.

On a mountain bike, none of that makes sense. A mountain bike doesn't have the power to slide you to the back of the bike, and there isn't a large continuous seat to slide around on anyway. And one leg out, standing up cornering doesn't feel particularly natural (in comparison to moto style turns on a motocross bike).

I'm guessing that if you're struggling with the leg out, you're likely staying seated during corners. Its general much slower to corner like this, and in my experience, also you're much more prone to wash out the front end, as all your weight is way off the back of the bike (on the seat).

Instead, on a mountain bike, "proper" cornering, is essentially standing/crouching with your weight through the pedals, arms wide/elbows out, in kind of a pseudo "pushup" position. Ideally, this is also with the seat down (which is why dropper posts are popular) giving you space to move around on the bike, and adapt to the terrain/conditions more quickly.

Looks something like this (random google image search results). He's also leaning the bike a bit in this photo, but you can see he's kind of half crouching/standing, weight more forward, eyes up, arms wide (and inside pedal up, so it doesn't hit the ground).



It feels a bit weird at first, but it starts to make sense after a few good turns. At this point, I can't imagine how strange it would be to try to ride a mountain bike doing seated, moto style turns.

And like others, I'd probably just ride the bike as it is, and make note of the things you'd change/prefer differently in the future. At a certain point it does cost more to upgrade a bike, than it does just to sell it, and get something different that comes with all of the upgrades. And in the learning phase, you may not know what you want right away.

Like you, I got into the sport as a way to get some exersize. In my mind, its kind of like mixing something I need to do anyway (the cardio), with pleasure (the downhills). Or, how I described it to my wife. Its like I eat my veggies/main meal on the climb, and then get desert on the way down (she's a dietician... so... the analogy made sense to her).

So, instead of getting back into dirt biking like I did when I was younger, I decided to do this instead, in the attempt to stay in slightly better shape, and not look like jabba the hutt in another 10-15 years.
Thanks so much for the reply. This helps a lot and makes sense. I'd love to get back into motocross but honestly, the cost to get into moto is way more expensive (at least 5k for a decent used bike, plus $1k for equipment, plus I'd need to pay for fuel, and arrange an entire new way to transport since I don't own a truck anymore, not to mention insurance). I figured a mt. bike is a good way to get on the trails again without walking, but still getting cardio in vs motocross isn't really cardio.

Your bike comes with front and rear hydraulic brakes. Why do you think that the rears aren't. The Trek specs state the bike has Tektro hydraulic brakes. I have never ever seen any bike come with hydraulic front and mechanical rear? Take a pic and post.

If for some reason your bike came with mechanical rear that was for some reason changed out at the bike shop before you bought it but that would be nuts.
Oh really? It says Tektro HD-275 hydraulic disc (13.5 & 15.5: Tektro HD-276 short reach lever)

Wasn't sure the rear was mechanical. I may have misunderstood my shop when they were talking to me about it.
 
1 - 20 of 31 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top