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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
As title suggests, which should I buy:
Polygon Xtrada 7
Norco Fluid HT2

Why these bikes: These are literally the only bikes in this price range, in my size (XL), available in my city (Melb, Aus). I would have liked a Vitus, but hey, it's a bad time to buy bikes 🤷‍♂️. Cheaper options are Giant Talon 1, or a stumpjumper.

What I'm riding: I've never owned a nice mountain bike before, but my 7yr old boy is really getting into it and I want to be able to follow him in the years to come. I've been borrowing a basic Marin Wildcat, which is awesome (love the sound of that chain slapping). But happy to drop a bit more money for a nicer ride. Mostly we're hitting single trail, pump tracks, and small jumps, but the lad's always keen to go longer, higher, harder.

I realise I'm asking how long is a piece of string, but any advice much appreciated.
 

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As title suggests, which should I buy:
Polygon Xtrada 7
Norco Fluid HT2

Why these bikes: These are literally the only bikes in this price range, in my size (XL), available in my city (Melb, Aus). I would have liked a Vitus, but hey, it's a bad time to buy bikes ?‍♂. Cheaper options are Giant Talon 1, or a stumpjumper.

What I'm riding: I've never owned a nice mountain bike before, but my 7yr old boy is really getting into it and I want to be able to follow him in the years to come. I've been borrowing a basic Marin Wildcat, which is awesome (love the sound of that chain slapping). But happy to drop a bit more money for a nicer ride. Mostly we're hitting single trail, pump tracks, and small jumps, but the lad's always keen to go longer, higher, harder.

I realise I'm asking how long is a piece of string, but any advice much appreciated.
Both Bikes are a very good option. I work at a shop that sells Norco and the HT2 has been one of our best sellers for 2020 and 2021. Bellow are the pros and cons of each bike.

Norco HT2:
Advantages:
  • 66 degree heat angle (1 degree slacker than the Polygon)
  • Comes out of the box with a dropper post
  • lifetime warranty on frame
  • Longer wheelbase than the polygon (Longer wheelbase makes the bike feel more stable at faster speeds in rough terrain)

Disadvantages:
  • The stock Tektro brakes are fine for cross country but may lack power for more aggressive riding
  • 11 speed drivetrain ( In my opinion this does not matter since both bikes have the same cassette size. Also 11 speed tends to keep their adjustment for longer)
  • Coil sprung fork (No adjustment for your weight)

Polygon Xtrada7:
Advantages:
  • Air sprung fork (can be adjusted to your weight or riding style. However since its a basic air sprung fork its quite sticky)
  • 12 speeds ( may also mean that their is a better quality rear hub but I'm not sure since I never seen one in person)
  • Shimano m201 brakes (slightly better than the Tektro in my opinion)

Disadvantages:
  • 67 degree head angle ( A bit steep for a hardtail of this type)
  • No dropper post
  • Shorter wheelbase

They are both great for the price. If you don't mind the lack of adjustability of the coil fork I would go with the Norco. You can always upgrade the parts to fit your needs as you become a more advanced rider.
 

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Called five bike shops looking for the fluid and they're all sold out now. Wish I'd pulled the trigger 2 weeks ago when I knew it was in stock
I'm sorry to hear that. If you are looking for something similar to the fluid their is the Marin San Quentin. For durability reasons and upgradability I would not recommend the San Quentin 1 since it has a QR axle in the back. However if you don't mind spending more the San Quentin 2 has a very good spec for the price and it has a thru axle in the back.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for tip, I was looking at Marin, but the San quentin 2 was a bit out of my price range.

Funny you should mention QR... In my ring around, I ended up chatting to a guy at one of the shops near me. And he sold me on a downgrade to a Norco Storm 1. Basically, reminded me that I don't need the slickest thing when I'm still just getting into it. Also, not gonna lie, a big selling point was that it was in stock and I could pick it up immediately.

Is there anything in particular I should keep an eye on with the QR? I've read they can get loose, but not exactly sure what the issue is with them.
 

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Thanks for tip, I was looking at Marin, but the San quentin 2 was a bit out of my price range.

Funny you should mention QR... In my ring around, I ended up chatting to a guy at one of the shops near me. And he sold me on a downgrade to a Norco Storm 1. Basically, reminded me that I don't need the slickest thing when I'm still just getting into it. Also, not gonna lie, a big selling point was that it was in stock and I could pick it up immediately.

Is there anything in particular I should keep an eye on with the QR? I've read they can get loose, but not exactly sure what the issue is with them.
Happy to hear that you found a bike. In the case of the Storm the QR should not be an issue since its a bike intended for cross country trails. When I got started in mtb most of the entry level full suspensions had a QR in the back and I have seen some axles break (probably due to fatigue) when they were used on rough dh trails. In all the Storms that we sold I don't think that someone ever broke an axle so no need to worry about that. Just make sure that the QR are tight especially in the front. If they are too loose (a mistake that I see often) the axle will move up and down in the dropouts due to the forces generated by the disc brakes. A properly adjusted QR should leave a clear imprint in you palm when closing it.
 
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