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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi! I'm making the final decision between a EX8 and a Trance X1 and I'm leaning toward the EX but I have a couple of questions about the EX.

- How do you like the Juicy 5's? On the test rides I was on they weren't that strong but there weren't broken in yet either. How well do they work when broken in?
- How durable is the Bontrager wheelset? I'm not huge but I am a little over 200 pounds and the strength of the wheelset is a concern.
- How durable is the paint / finish on the EX? Does the paint scratch easily?
- I usually don't buy new technology the first year it comes out, did anyone else have that concern with the Trek???
- If you chose the EX over the Trance X what were the deciding reasons?

Thanks for your help!
 

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Here is my experience with the EX8 after about a month of ownership and 3-4 rides per week.

1. The Jucy 5's work fine. Modulation has improved with use for me. Originally they were quite grabby. They do squeak a bit but nothing that bothers me too much.

2. The wheelset has worked fine for me but I am ~160lbs. Can't address how they work for heavier people.

3. Paint has held up fine for me so far.

4. I personally am quite pleased with the ABP system. Various shops I spoke with all agreed that it actually works and I concur. The "floating" rear shock also handles fine. Great suspension.

5. N/A

Overall, the EX8 climbs like a champ, downhills on rails and is the most fun I have had on a bike in a long time. My confidence level has increased over my previous K2 hardtail and I am charging lines more aggressively than ever before. And this is from someone who normally is totally content with just riding and not trying to be the fastest or craziest person on the hill. Just make sure you change out your tires. The Bontrager Jones XR can be scary, IMO.

Ultimately, I would highly recommend the EX8 for what it is designed for, XC and some light all mountain. Hope this helps.
 

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-Well Im personally not a fan of hydraulic brakes on mountain bikes. I like mechanicals better. I have rode a 08 and 07 fuel EX 8 and they have great brakes.
-Bontrager wheelsets work great! You should not have any problem with them.
-The paint on the EX's appear to be pretty durable.
-Well Im assuming you have rode the EX already. Trek has a lifetime warranty so you won't have anything to worry about.
-Cant help you on that one. Im just not a Giant fan.
 

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i demoed both the ex8 and the giant trance x0.

-the brakes on the ex demo bike were grabby on the front and they did squeak (on both bikes, both were avid equipped). more modulation of the rear so i guess in time and with use, modulation improves.
-haven't had enough time to judge the wheel set.
-the demo bike has been thru several riders and clearly its been taken thru its paces, the paint looked like it was holding up just fine.
-comparing rear suspension between the two is hard. It really felt the same between the trek's and giant's. both went uphill with minimal bob on the saddle and both seemed to track well over roots and bumps. it's a coin toss IMO.
-i would choose the trek because i like the fuel's more xc geometry and because the BB is higher on the trek. I had a lot of pedal strikes on the giant. also to me it seemed like the trek steered quicker (not twitchy) just quicker than the giant.
 

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ok slightly out but ive got this years ex9 but ive played with an 8

the brakes are great once broken in - i love avid's stuff
bonetrager make some excellent wheels, the wheelset on the 8 is strong but surprisingly light
the paint, its so different to the 9 i cant really comment, its almost like its been anodized, if its anything like the 9 it will hold up very well
the suspension for me is great i have no complaints, as for the giant....i didnt like it so much always felt sluggish
i would go with the trek, its an awesome bike that ALWAYS turns heads [and thats on a white one god knows what happens when you rock up on that green???] the warranty is superb and trek customer service is something rarely found these days. for me its a no brainer go with the trek

but then again im biased :)
 

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We have been renting these and Fisher counterparts as well as testing competitors. My wife is same height as I am and she's not wanting to buy a bike right now. The EX is the first respectable suspension bike Trek as ever made as far as I am concerned because I've only had Horst-types since 1993 so I'm used to plush and good brake performance.

I seem to like Hayes brakes the most, but I have not tried the Strokers yet.

You should get the bike that feels and fits best because IMO all the well known makes of bike and components have become pretty good. It's not fair for me to speak of the Giant in same way because I've only had bike shop tests opposed to riding multiple 10+ mile loops of single track with the Trek. That said, the Trek has a more racy feel out of the box where I give stem length and tires the credit. Features my wife liked and features I did not like.

You can't go very wrong with any popular stuff these days so get what feels best when you ride. Paint is the last thing I would worry about because you can't really do much decent trail riding without some trashing and crashing.
 

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CraterMaker said:
Hi! I'm making the final decision between a EX8 and a Trance X1 and I'm leaning toward the EX but I have a couple of questions about the EX.

- How do you like the Juicy 5's? On the test rides I was on they weren't that strong but there weren't broken in yet either. How well do they work when broken in?
- How durable is the Bontrager wheelset? I'm not huge but I am a little over 200 pounds and the strength of the wheelset is a concern.
- How durable is the paint / finish on the EX? Does the paint scratch easily?
- I usually don't buy new technology the first year it comes out, did anyone else have that concern with the Trek???
- If you chose the EX over the Trance X what were the deciding reasons?

Thanks for your help!
Juicy's - I've been riding these brakes now for about 200 miles. For a "lower end" brake, they are darn nice. When I bought my bike, I had determined that I wanted to swap these right away, but gave em a shot. I will not be replacing them any time soon, they just flat out work.

Bonty Wheelset - Darn rugged wheels, I use em as my training / trail riding wheel and beat the snot out of them. They stay true and straight, tough cookies!

Trek Paint - I've yet to scratch the paint, or chip it with rocks. I do have some cable rub from my nokon cables, but I've fixed that with some racers tape and now its not an issue.

I have no worries with the Trek warranty, these guys are fantastic with customer service and no worries about the new tech.

I rode the Trance X and EX 8 that I own now. Why did I choose the EX over the Trance?

I'll be honest, there was no light at the end of the tunnel that just flicked on when I got on the Trek over the Giant.

Riding them around from friends, on trails and just messing around on em at the LBS's they felt pretty similar, both offer a great pedaling platform, both offer great supple suspension, both have a decent parts kit (that wasn't important to me, I was refitting the bike with stuff I had anyways). What it honestly came down to for me was that I loved the Green and white paint of the Trek. :rolleyes:

Ok so what did I exactly give you for insight on the bikes? IMO both bikes are solid, will far exceed your abilities as a rider, are good values for their money and it comes down to what color you like the best! hah.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks!

A big thank you to everyone for their help and input. I just got back from a 2 hour ride on my new EX8! The bike is simply amazing, I really liked the Trance X and if Trek had not made the EX I could have bought a Trance X and I'm sure I would have been happy, but I went with the EX mainly because it fit me better (I'm on an 18.5 EX that seems like it was made for me, I was in-between the M and L on the Trance X) and I like the ABP on the EX. It really feels like you have antilock braking when you're going downhill and at this time of year in SoCal when all of the trails are loose dirt and rocks it makes a big difference. I also felt the EX has more of a XC feel to it which I liked.
After taking the EX on an extended off road trip on the trails that I normally ride I'm convinced I made the right choice. Over the years I've had or ridden just about every type of suspension design, but it seems that Trek really did a nice job with th EX. If you're looking for a XC / AM bike for just over 2 large you really should take the EX8 for a spin!
 

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CraterMaker said:
A big thank you to everyone for their help and input. I just got back from a 2 hour ride on my new EX8! The bike is simply amazing, I really liked the Trance X and if Trek had not made the EX I could have bought a Trance X and I'm sure I would have been happy, but I went with the EX mainly because it fit me better (I'm on an 18.5 EX that seems like it was made for me, I was in-between the M and L on the Trance X) and I like the ABP on the EX. It really feels like you have antilock braking when you're going downhill and at this time of year in SoCal when all of the trails are loose dirt and rocks it makes a big difference. I also felt the EX has more of a XC feel to it which I liked.
After taking the EX on an extended off road trip on the trails that I normally ride I'm convinced I made the right choice. Over the years I've had or ridden just about every type of suspension design, but it seems that Trek really did a nice job with th EX. If you're looking for a XC / AM bike for just over 2 large you really should take the EX8 for a spin!
Great Choice, but you can't make this post with out the pics. That's just not right! :nono:
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Good point.
That brings up my only two problems with the EX;
1) The realization that any climb or trail I can't do is on me.
2) The black will be hard to keep clean (but it really looks nice when it is...)
Let me clean up this bad boy and I'll post some pics!
 

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Clean it up for pics? No way! Lets see the work you've been doing on the trails.

I really liked my EX8 on the first ride, and I like it more each time I ride it. Now that my confidence, strength, and fitness level are getting closer to the capibilities of the bike, I'm starting to see what the bike is made of and I'm really happy with my decision.

Keep riding!
 

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whats your height/weight/inseam? im just curious because i was on the rail over the 17.5/18.5 and went with the 17.5. i am 5'9", 155lbs. i love it, but dirty little thoughts run through my mind every time i hop on someone elses (bigger) bike.
 
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