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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all,

I'm a roadie and put in quite a few miles a week on my road bike. I've got a lot of friends lately trying to get me to go mountain biking with them. I don't know how much mountain biking I'm going to do, so I wanted to see if I could get something "ok" in the $600 range. Some candidates so far are the Specialized Hard Rock Pro Disc, Raleigh M80 or Motobecane 700XT (saw on ebay - don't know if its any good? XT components though). Anyway, any advice or suggestions would be appreciated.

Thanks,
Mike
 

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It comes down to fit and fell. I would check out the Gary Fisher Marlin/ Tassahara, Kona Blast, Specialized hardrock series, and maybe the Giant Yukon. I started with a Gary Fisher MArlin and was very happy with it. Your weight and what you plan to do with the bike matters. If your under #200 and don't plan on dirt jumping a lot then any of the above bikes should be looked at.
 

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Suggest Fisher or longer TT for transition to off road

ravenmore said:
Hey all,

I'm a roadie and put in quite a few miles a week on my road bike. I've got a lot of friends lately trying to get me to go mountain biking with them. I don't know how much mountain biking I'm going to do, so I wanted to see if I could get something "ok" in the $600 range. Some candidates so far are the Specialized Hard Rock Pro Disc, Raleigh M80 or Motobecane 700XT (saw on ebay - don't know if its any good? XT components though). Anyway, any advice or suggestions would be appreciated.

Thanks,
Mike
Gary Fisher is a near daily road rider who races occasionally off road. His Genesis frame designs have more road bike handling traits, longer wheelbase and quick handling for good stability and handling. More advanced mountain bikers like shorter wheelbases for better tricky technical handling at the sacrifice of some stability and climbing or racing efficiencies.

Go test ride as many as possible for get a feel for fit and comfort.

- ray
 

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Go for Fit first then LX level.

ravenmore said:
I'm a roadie and put in quite a few miles a week on my road bike. I've got a lot of friends lately trying to get me to go mountain biking with them. I don't know how much mountain biking I'm going to do, so I wanted to see if I could get something "ok" in the $600 range. Some candidates so far are the Specialized Hard Rock Pro Disc, Raleigh M80 or Motobecane 700XT (saw on ebay - don't know if its any good? XT components though). Anyway, any advice or suggestions would be appreciated.
As you know from your road bike fit is all important. I'm roughly the same TT for both MT/Road so I'd use that as a guide. Then swap for the correct stem. Standover shouldn't be a problem unless you've got a really long stem on your road bike. Geometry is going to be different no matter what you get (slacker HA, higher BB, longer stays, longer wheelbase, etc)

FYI
Altus ~ Sora?
Acera ~ Sora
Alivio ~ Tiagra
Deore ~ Tiagra/105
LX ~ 105
XT ~ Ultegra
XTR ~ Dura-Ace

Other then that I'd probably recommend a Giant Iguana if new. They've usually got the best components for the money. I wouldn't recommend dropping below Deore components, and LX is preferable. I don't know much about Altus/Acera/Alivio lines though my first bike was a Marlin (Altus/Alivio mix) and I wore though most of the parts (wheelset, cranks, BB, shifters, 2 cassettes) in little over a year of biking a few times a week.
 

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I was looking for my first road bike two weeks ago and noticed that there were too many nice road bikes to choose even though most them were over my budget. :p If I were you, I'd seriously look for an 04 leftover Giant Rainier. In addition, the Iron Horse Rogue at Supergo and Gary Fisher bikes at Jenson should be on your shopping list. Test all of your friends' bikes on trails and see how you like them. If any of your friends has a FS bike, give a day or two test ride. Who knows? You might end up getting a FS bike(more money) instead of a HT. :D
http://www.supergo.com/profile.cfm?lstore_id=79&LPROD_ID=25875&lsubcat_id=&lcat_id=&referpage=

http://www.jensonusa.com/store/sub/153-Hardtail.aspx

ravenmore said:
Hey all,

I'm a roadie and put in quite a few miles a week on my road bike. I've got a lot of friends lately trying to get me to go mountain biking with them. I don't know how much mountain biking I'm going to do, so I wanted to see if I could get something "ok" in the $600 range. Some candidates so far are the Specialized Hard Rock Pro Disc, Raleigh M80 or Motobecane 700XT (saw on ebay - don't know if its any good? XT components though). Anyway, any advice or suggestions would be appreciated.

Thanks,
Mike
 

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I bought a 2004 Iron Horse Warrior Comp last summer as my first real mountain bike. I don't really have anything to compare it against, but it seems like a quality bike. Deore front, and rear, disc brakes, and a pretty good fork. I am around 145 pounds, so if you weigh up near 200 most forks would probobly be too soft on bikes in this price range. I suggest you go and try some bikes out, only sure way to pick the right bike for you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
thanks for all the replies and keep them coming. :)

Road bikes are even worse - all the selection makes my head spin still. :D Good bang for the buck bike is a Trek 1500. Should be able to get one sub $1000 if you look around. Also has excellent resale value in case you want to upgrade later.

Also, what do you guys think about this I found on ebay:

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=7144546667&fromMakeTrack=true

It's dirt cheap and has LX rear, deore front, and disc brakes. You know what they about things that seem to good to be true. And no buying it out from under me if its a good deal.... :D
 
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I would buy an inexpensive bike at first, see if you like off road riding. If you like it, you'll be able to tell what you like and don't like about the bike so when you decide to buy your dream mountain bike you'll know exactly what you want.
I've heard good things about Ibex bikes, wouldn't be a big risk to try their Alpine 350
 

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Pass on that Ebay deal

That bike isn't worth any more than the buyitnow price. The shifters are Alivio or less - you can tell because it only has 24 gears. The Judy TT has a terrible rep. The rest of the parts are nondescript.

If you are willing to spend more then you can get a better bike at a LBS, and that way you get better service as well. For $600 you should be able to get decent drivetrain parts (Deore or better) and a slightly better fork.
 

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ravenmore said:
Hey all,

I'm a roadie and put in quite a few miles a week on my road bike. I've got a lot of friends lately trying to get me to go mountain biking with them. I don't know how much mountain biking I'm going to do, so I wanted to see if I could get something "ok" in the $600 range. Some candidates so far are the Specialized Hard Rock Pro Disc, Raleigh M80 or Motobecane 700XT (saw on ebay - don't know if its any good? XT components though). Anyway, any advice or suggestions would be appreciated.

Thanks,
Mike
New, i recommend Gary Fisher, Trek or Giant.
keep a sharp eye on any mtb classifieds you can get your eyes on, and you will probably be rewarded with a good good deal.
 

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Let me rephrase that

I'm not picking on RockShox in particular; I haven't even ridden a Judy TT. But you don't see many people saying good things about them. I don't like the Manitou Six much (from personal experience) and I doubt I would like the Marz MZ Comp because they all share one undesirable feature; they use elastomers for their rebound damping. I would look real hard for a bike with an oil-damped fork.

Here is a brand new $600 bike with an oil-damped fork, Deore or better drivetrain components and hydraulic disc brakes as well:

Iron Horse Rogue
 
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