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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been looking at getting a new bike for a little while, I'm thinking my limit is right around the $1000 CAN mark, but if the bike I choose is over I'll just wait a little longer I think.

Now I'm just looking for a decent XC hardtail, I'm not a very agressive rider, but I don't want to worry that a the bike I choose won't take the abuse I dish out. I'm a larger rider at 6' 1" and 250 lbs. At first I was looking at Trek and I liked the 6500, but I talked to my LBS and the guy there (he rides a Giant) suggessed the Giant Rainer, which looks like its spec'd a little nicer then the Trek. However I've since then looked at all different manufacturers and found that they all have bikes that fit in this same price range, and are all similarly spec'd

These are the bikes I have listed now:

Giant Rainer
Trek 6500
Gary Fisher Tassajara Disc
Kona Cinder Cone - (My LBS does not sell Kona's so I'm not sure where I would find them)
Kona Hoss
Specialized RockHopper Disc Comp

I still need to go to the LBS and test drive a few of these to see what is going to fit the best, but I'm just looking to see if anyone would say one stands out to them as a much better bike, or even stands out as something to avoid

Also with the Giant Rainer (I still think this is #1 on my list), the stores around me seem to have the 2005 at around $1150 CAN and the 2004 at around $1050 CAN, to me this sounds odd, I mean the 2005 isn't really much different but it has different shocks, hydro disc's vs. mech disc's and a few other new things, its it normal for the price difference to be so small? and would you say its better to stick with this years?

Thanks for your time

Chris
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Well I stopped in at the LBS last night and was able to sit on the first 3 bikes on my list, from just sitting on them and looking at the prices and the components, the Gary Fisher is now on the top of my list.

I was quoted $1079 CAN for this bike, but I still need to go back again and actually test ride it for a bit (it wasn't nice out) to see if it really fits right.

Just an update on my situation
 

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Ride all 3

Turt99 said:
Well I stopped in at the LBS last night and was able to sit on the first 3 bikes on my list, from just sitting on them and looking at the prices and the components, the Gary Fisher is now on the top of my list.

I was quoted $1079 CAN for this bike, but I still need to go back again and actually test ride it for a bit (it wasn't nice out) to see if it really fits right.

Just an update on my situation
Sitting and looking isn't enough. It's nice to know that one of the three appeals to you, but do yourself a favor and ride your top 3 choice (more if possible) and go with the bike that feels like it fits best. If they spec out similarly, then your decision should be easy.

let us know what you finally decide on.

Clyde
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks Clyde,

Yeah I think I'm going to try and ride atleast the Giant and the Gary Fisher, they didn't have the exact Trek that I wanted, they had the version without disc (exact same otherwise).

Also with the Giant, my LBS had the 19" version at seemed like it might be a little to short (in length rather then hieght) for me, but they didn't have a 20" that I could try so its hard to tell if it would fit better or end up being too tall. Also just sitting on the Giant I could tell that the forks wouldn't work for me, I could compress the fork the full length by just leaning over the front. The Gary Fisher fork seemed much stiffer (good for me at 250 lbs)

Anyways I will definitly be trying them out before my final decision, and I'll be sure to let you know what I decide

Chris
 

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Ask your LBS about setting up your fork differently if you find you can compress it too easily. There are stiffer springs or elastomers which can be changed out to suit your weight better, and your LBS should be able to do this for you to try out. Good luck :)

- Jen.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I beleive the shock is Oil with Air assist, on the Rainer, but I could be wrong. Wouldn't the store need to take the shock completely appart to change the springs? I don't see a store doing that to a brand new bike just so I can ride it in the parking lot. But I guess its possible that you could convince them.

The shock on the Fisher had much more adjustments including a lockout feature. Overall the Gary Fisher comes out costing less with better parts (in general they are very similar, just a few small things are better on the fisher, like the hubs), and from the small test that I did give it, it fits better then the others.

I'm going to go to some other shops and see what they have for stock. This is a slow process because I'm not expecting to really buy untill the end of the month (I'll beat on my old bike untill then, and continue my research)

Chris
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Why is it that when I got to the LBS to checkout something that I'm interested in, thats the one thing that they don't carry, or they don't have in my size.

I went to another LBS in my area yesterday to actually test drive some bikes, but they didn't have the GF Tass that I really wanted to try, I was able to test a Trek 6500 (this bike was not long enough for me, I felt way over the bars), Giant Iguana '05 (nice bike, but too low on components and the shock was way to soft), Giant Rainier '04 (I like this bike it would be my top out of the ones I tried so far)

They didn't have the Rainier '05 in but from what I saw at the other LBS the shock is not as firm as the '04 model.. I happenned to like the Avid Discs on the '04 better then the Hayes on the Trek because the levers are much smaller. The GF as the hayes too so I'm not sure if I'm going to like that..

Anyways I still need to ride the GF, but I just wish I one of the stores would have all the bikes at one time...

Thanks for Reading

Chris
 

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Rainier is an excellent choice

Turt99 said:
Why is it that when I got to the LBS to checkout something that I'm interested in, thats the one thing that they don't carry, or they don't have in my size.

I went to another LBS in my area yesterday to actually test drive some bikes, but they didn't have the GF Tass that I really wanted to try, I was able to test a Trek 6500 (this bike was not long enough for me, I felt way over the bars), Giant Iguana '05 (nice bike, but too low on components and the shock was way to soft), Giant Rainier '04 (I like this bike it would be my top out of the ones I tried so far)

They didn't have the Rainier '05 in but from what I saw at the other LBS the shock is not as firm as the '04 model.. I happenned to like the Avid Discs on the '04 better then the Hayes on the Trek because the levers are much smaller. The GF as the hayes too so I'm not sure if I'm going to like that..

Anyways I still need to ride the GF, but I just wish I one of the stores would have all the bikes at one time...

Thanks for Reading

Chris
As I've said many times before, you'll find that the Rainier tends to be a standard that many hardtails are compared to. Some are better, obviously, but the Rainier is a very solid choice for a hardtail. If you can get a deal on the '04, give it serious consideration.

Clyde
 

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Definitely test ride the GF. Because of the geometry, people either love 'em or hate 'em. I've had two GF's and loved them both. They are tough, usually a great deal and if the geometry fits you, they're super comfy. I recently retired my Sugar and she just hangs on the wall all alone for now. Someday I'll build her back up but she's taken a beating and still rides perfect. And it's the most comfortable bike I've ever owned. My other bikes are comfy but that one just fit me like a glove. I hate to be cramped on a bike. I like to be stretched out and that's what the GF is all about.

Anyway, test ride it and if it feels good, I'd go for it. I don't think you'll be disappointed. It'll be able to take just about any thing you can dish out. I would talk to the LBS and if the springs in the fork feel too 'soft' and tell them 'I'm really interested in this bike but the fork is way to soft. I can just stand here and bottom it out. Any chance of upgrading the spring kit?' If that's the only thing holding you back from buying it, I'm sure they'll work with you to change them out.

Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
The fork issue is with the '05 Rainier not with the Gary Fisher, I think right now the Gary Fisher and Giant '04 are the 2 I'm thinking about, the Trek geometry just doesn't fit me well at all..

I'm hoping the Gary Fisher fits me well, I like the components a little more, and its priced at the same amount..

Gary Fisher Tassajara - Current Quote $1050.00 CAN at one shop that would have to order it in, and $1079.99 at the shop that I will test it at (but I will let the shop know of the other offer before I order it)

Giant Rainier '04 - Current Sticker $1129.00 (Last Years price was marked at $1240 I think) (I'm hoping that if I decide on this bike that I can talk them down a little and atleast get it to around what the Gary Fisher is at now)

These 2 bikes are basically maxing out my budget so its safe to say if I can knock it down a little it will be good..

(Anyone know what sort of mark up is put on bikes of this level? is $100 off the asking price a decent discount or is it possible to do better?)
 

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Turt99 said:
I've been looking at getting a new bike for a little while, I'm thinking my limit is right around the $1000 CAN mark, but if the bike I choose is over I'll just wait a little longer I think.

Now I'm just looking for a decent XC hardtail, I'm not a very agressive rider, but I don't want to worry that a the bike I choose won't take the abuse I dish out. I'm a larger rider at 6' 1" and 250 lbs. At first I was looking at Trek and I liked the 6500, but I talked to my LBS and the guy there (he rides a Giant) suggessed the Giant Rainer, which looks like its spec'd a little nicer then the Trek. However I've since then looked at all different manufacturers and found that they all have bikes that fit in this same price range, and are all similarly spec'd

These are the bikes I have listed now:

Giant Rainer
Trek 6500
Gary Fisher Tassajara Disc
Kona Cinder Cone - (My LBS does not sell Kona's so I'm not sure where I would find them)
Kona Hoss
Specialized RockHopper Disc Comp

I still need to go to the LBS and test drive a few of these to see what is going to fit the best, but I'm just looking to see if anyone would say one stands out to them as a much better bike, or even stands out as something to avoid

Also with the Giant Rainer (I still think this is #1 on my list), the stores around me seem to have the 2005 at around $1150 CAN and the 2004 at around $1050 CAN, to me this sounds odd, I mean the 2005 isn't really much different but it has different shocks, hydro disc's vs. mech disc's and a few other new things, its it normal for the price difference to be so small? and would you say its better to stick with this years?

Thanks for your time

Chris
For about 1000$ canadian you could buy a used NRS (full suspension) on ebay or another site. I have an NRS and I love it. It is AWESOME. I would consider the NRS and try checking some out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Okay so now I go back to the Original LBS and they just sold the Gary Fisher Tass that I was going to test ride (they sold it the day before I went in), Well that sucks but they let me try the Marlin that they have that has disc brakes (Hayes Mech) Well the frame seems to fit perfect so in my mind the Gary Fishers are what I'm looking at because they seem to fit me so well. But riding the Marlin got me thinking, do I need to go for the Tass or can I save some money and get the lower level

Quote from Bike Shop on the Tass = $1079.99 CAN
The Marlin = $869.99 CAN and they will upgrade the petals to the same level clipless for free

So now I'm stuck, if I decide the Tass then I have to find a shop that can get it for me, my LBS just sold their last one and said that they aren't sure when they can get another one because the manufacturer has low stock on alot of bikes. Thats a point for the Marlin, but all the component on the Marlin are just one step down (When I'm on the trails am I really going to notice the difference in the drive train?) the Hydro brakes on the Tass aren't really a big thing for me because I really don't like the levers and because there are hydros its not something that can easily be replaced.

The major thing I'm curious about is the Shocks the Tass has the Elite and the Marlin comes with the Comp version whats the major difference between these 2 shocks? Would it be better to look at the Tass given that I'm 250 lbs? or will that even make any difference?

Thanks for you time
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I just posted an update on this in the Shocks forum, but I thought I'd update this thread as well incase anyone was following it, the question is about the shocks and differences between the 2 bikes.
______________________________________________________________

Does anyone know the difference between these 2 shocks? I'm looking at 2 bikes, the Gary Fisher Tassajara and the Gary Fisher Marlin I'm trying to decide if it would be okay to go with the Marlin instead of the Tassajara.

I know all the drivetrain is different, and the Marlin is only 8 speed in the rear (not sure if this will really cause a problem if I try to replace any drivetrain parts later), But the frame seems to be the exact same except for the color.

The shocks on the 2 bikes are different the Marlin has the Manitou Axel Comp and the Tassajara as the Elite version. Whats the difference between these 2 forks I tried looking on the Manitou site but the shocks there look different then what was on the bike, and they only have a super version and an elite version.

Just incase your looking at the bikes to compare them, the Marlin that is at the LBS I'm looking at has Disc brakes (Hayes Mech) and the wheels are the same as the Tassajara.

Tassajara - 1079.99 CAN
Marlin - 869.99 CAN (and the shop said they would upgrade it to clipless 505's for no added cost)

What do you guys think?
 
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