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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello! I'm new to the forum and will soon be purchasing a new bike (within 2 weeks). If anyone has any advice regarding the possibilities below please share! I'm trying to make as information as a decision as possible.

I'm trading in a bike that I'll be getting $300 for and my budget is $1100-1200 including pedals/shoes. The dealer I'm working with will pretty much match internet prices for components and install them free, and will also provide credit towards the purchase for the parts I switch out if done when new.

Option #1: Trek Fisher Collection Cobia. Quoted $1000 for the bike - trade = $700. I was planning on immediately upgrading to clipless pedals. Also was going to upgrade rear/front d's and shifters to X.9 series. Also wanted to grab a pair of lock on grips. Total w/ pedals and shoes puts it in my price range.

Option #2: Trek Fisher Collection X-Caliber. Quoted in the $1400s - trade puts the bike in my price range, although having to buy pedals/shoes puts it slightly out but still doable. Wouldn't have any extra for additional components.

I prefer the orange color of the Cobia, and with the upgrades, the front/rear d's and shifters would be a higher series than the X-Cal. Do people think the Reba, Jucy 3's, and M525's are worth stretching my budget, staying w/ the X.7 series, and dealing with the color?

I know upgrading parts in the long run is more expensive. If the X-cal came in another color combo I'd go for it, but I'm not sure I want to give up the orange. I'm estimating I'll be able to replace the breaks in the cobia around May. If this is the case, the only difference at that point will be the fork and wheels.

Thoughts are appreciated! Also.. if there are other suggestions for components to upgrade instead on the Cobia that'll stay in my budget I'd be interested.
 

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Get the X-Cal, it has a good spec that is easy to live with. Worry about getting rid of all that Bontrager crap. X7 shifts find. The Juicy 3 and M525 are spec junk, but your not going to get any better from a mega manufacture in that price range. It is just nature of the beast.
 

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The frames are identical. I don't think the wheels are that much difference (both heavy). I'm not familiar with the fork differences. Personally I sort of like the X-Cal (colors), however I got a Paragon this winter. I would have upgraded the X-Cal brakes to Avid Elixer-5s which are on the Paragon...so the other Paragon upgrades came for nearly free and in my case the frame isn't the same.

Like you say its probably smarter $$ wise to go X-cal, but if you don't like the color then you probably will never be real happy with it.

So I like your plan, but I might upgrade the brakes first and the shifters later. The 29er wheels roll fast and stoping is harder. A year later or so you can upgade the wheels for $400-$500 and have a really nice bike that you like the color of.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the info bugfinder. Another question that wasn't addressed is whether the 10-speed of the X-cal should be another added point over the 9-speed of the Cobia. Thoughts?
 

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Meh. It might be a slight improvement, but I wouldn't consider it a selling point by any means. As you increase the number of cogs, the spacing between two cogs decreases. This should make for smoother shifts. However, I don't know if the difference will be all that noticeable. I've never ridden a 3x10, so I can't say for certain, but IMHO 3x10 isn't an absolute necessity.



EDIT: I can't type, apparently. My English teachers would be disappointed.
 

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I was going to get an X-Cal and recently went with a Giant XTC 29er 2 instead. I am really, really happy with my purchase.:D

http://www.dirtragmag.com/node/32179

The X-Cal is a slightly lighter bike, but the rigidity of the Giant is what did it for me and it has slightly better components IMO, for a slightly lower price. The 15mm thru axle front hub and tapered head tube and frame design sold me.

Good luck with your purchase and tell us how it goes!:thumbsup:
 

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Two things I don't Like the Cobia, Small rear tire and Pro-Max Hydro Brakes.
Rear tire not that difficult to change brakes on the other hand...

Like the Orange Though!

Whats the deal with Small rear tires on Trek 29ers. Are we all racing?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks for the input everyone... It's opened up the option of the Giant, but I'm not sure either of my LBSs sell Giant. If I still went with the Cobia, I'd probably take bugfinder and Normbilt's advice and do the brakes before the shifters.

It's going to be a little over a week before I can order a bike so I'm still taking any notes people want to offer. Thanks!

EDIT: Thoughts on going with the Fisher version of the Cobia or X-cal instead of the Trek Fisher collection? I noticed the components aren't the same. Is one a better value than the other? I'm curious about these differences...
 

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I could be wrong (so correct me if anyone has better info), but I believe any Fisher Cobia or X-cal that are still on the market are from pre MY 2010 under Fisher bicycles. I am almost positive that Fisher bikes are now officially built and sold through Trek from 2011 on. This may be the reason the components are different, they don't have all the Trek house brand parts (Bontrager).
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Hmmm... Ok, thanks for that. Guess I'm still going to have to run through all the possibilities over the next week...
 

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op, are you sure any LBSs near you don't have 2010 GFs? you can get a killer deal on older versions and imo i like the components chosen pre-trek (i know GF has been trek for a while but even more now). even think about traveling a bit to find a great deal- unless of course you're tied to your LBS.

it would be a no brainer for me to go with the xcal instead of the cobia if it was 2010 but i'm not that impressed with the 2011 parts. if you go with the cobia, i agree with the brake upgrade before anything else.

good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thanks for the input Eric. I don't think I can separate myself from the color differences...

Think I'll probably go w/ the cobia (anything's an upgrade from my 4300 disc...) and swap out the front/rear, wait on the shifters. Use that money to swap out the breaks. It'll still come in cheaper at that point than the X-Cal and I'll be happier w/ the color...

Any thoughts on break/pedals? I'd like to stay around $100 for the pedals and the breaks depend on how much I'd be able to get in credit for the ones that come off the bike. I'm a big fan of customizing so I prefer components that come in a variety of colors...

Once this is done, I'd probably try to get either a new fork or a new wheelset sometime later this season, depending on how I like each.

Thanks everyone and as always... any more thoughts are appreciated!
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Just a quick update...

Stopped by the LBS today and ordered a 2011 X-Caliber. Once he went through the price it wouldn't have been worth getting the Cobia.

Got the X-cal for $1400
Trade value was bumped to $350 (Trek 4300 Disc...Overvalued IMO)
Added a set of shoes and pedals and the total with tax came to $1325

Figured I couldn't pass it up... Can't wait to get it!
 

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I think you are really gonna like it :D I bought a Cobia 2 weeks ago and I am delighted with it. It's a 2011 and is sold under the Trek name. It's also my first 29er so that is a big part of my Euphoria :)



Ted
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Bugfiner - Thanks!

Ted - Clad you like your Cobia! I was really a fan of that orange :) Have you noticed anything you may upgrade sooner rather than later based on the riding you've done so far?

I can't wait to get out and ride. This weekend looks like all rain though so I don't see the trails drying out anytime soon...
 

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Hey PA :D


This is only my second bike-store bike so I may not be the most discerning reviewer here :). My first bike-store bike was a trek 3700 ( 26er entry level hardtail ). It's been a great bike, Very solid, and still runs very well.

However, stepping up to a mid level hardtail ( and a 29er at that ) has been quite an experience for me, I am really impressed with my new ride.

What I noticed immediately when I got the Cobia was how much more I liked the 29er ride. I really appreciated the increased stability, momentum, traction and the ability to roll right over obstacles in the trail. I came away from the ride quite stoked. At that time I didn't see or feel anything that I thought might be a problem or an "issue" that would need to be dealt with. I was really just enjoying the awesome ride :D

By the end of the second ride, however, I was beginning to notice that under certain conditions ( rock gardens mainly ) the rear tire was getting a little more "hoppy" or bouncy than I was used to. I attributed this to the fact that my positioning in the cockpit was more forward than it had been on the 3700. The design of the Cobia puts you in more of an aggressive racing position than the more casual upright 3700 cockpit position. This had a tendency to apply less weight to the rear tire and so my rear end was a little "loose" at times.

I accidentally found a quick and simple solution to this situation however. Right before my 3rd ride I purchased a Cane Creek Thudbuster ( I always wanted to try one ). I went back to the same trail I had been on for my 2nd ride because I wanted to see what kind of a difference I would notice on the same trail. Well, I noticed all the stuff that people usually say about the Thudbuster ( it REALLY smooths out the trail for you ) but what I didn't expect was how much better my rear tire stayed planted throughout the ride. I Really felt locked into the trail this time. Part of this was the fact that I stayed on the seat a lot more and part of it was the shock absorption effect of the Thudbuster which kept the rear tire on or closer to the ground at all times. I was really flyin down the trail that time, in fact I almost rear ended some guys that were about half my age that were a little suprised I was keepin up with them :)

After the 3rd ride I was even more stoked :D

As far as any additional problem areas or short comings, I didn't notice any during that 3rd ride, I rode for about 1.5 hrs

I will be making my 4th and 5th rides this weekend ( today and tomorrow) if i have anything to report I will let you know here. My ride today will be at the same trail I was at for the 2nd and 3rd ride. My ride Sunday ( :D ) should be quite the Event, I will be going to a place that has a reputation for being one of the better rides in the nation. I am gonna do about fifteen miles there, it should be a real test of the bike ( and me :D ).

Lordy, I didn't mean to turn this into a novel ! I hope this has helped you somewhat.

Oh ! I am diggin the orange color :)

Ted

P.S. Sounds like you got a helluva deal
 
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I'm late to the game but I think you would have kicked yourself for getting the Cobia down the road. Congrats...the X-Cal is a good deal!
 
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