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(Feel free to move the discussion if it's in the wrong area).

I've recently become really interested in trials riding (street trials in particular). But I'm not sure where to start.

I have a dirt jumper (Specialized P1). But it's not exactly the lightest. (Around 16 kg or 35lbs).

Due to living in Tasmania the odds of getting a 2nd hand trials bike are minimal, so it'd probably be brand new. The cheapest one I've seen is around $500 AUD from Tartybikes in the UK (not including shipping costs). In Australia the cheapest brand new one is over $1k.

I'm wondering whether it would be better to bite the bullet a buy a comp trials bike to practice on, or if I practice on the DJ and save up for a dedicated street trials bike?
 

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While the DJ is not ideal, you can do most basic and even some advanced trials moves on any MTB- Martyn Ashton even has some video of him doing trials on a Pinarello carbon road bike.

If you look at the old videos of Martyn, Hans Rey, etc you will see they were doing trials on MTB before there were "trials" bikes. Danny MacAskill and Chris Akrigg have some more recent videos of them doing trials on regular trail bikes.

Of course, these guys are all just bad-ass and way better than us but the point is you can start trialsy moves on any bike and save up to get your "real" trials bike. The geometry of an actual trials bike will make some moves easier to learn and do, but is not actually necessary to learning the skills.

My trials bike was stolen a while back and I have just been playing around on my Chromag Stylus- I realized I am never gonna be Danny Mac and I still have tons of fun.
 

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All the guys here I know we started on regular mountain bikes, some were really miss sized tanks, and those guys ended up being the best riders!
Anyway, dirt jumper is strong, that's number 1. Is it single ring up front? You might want to play with the gearing, usually go pretty small up front. Do get a honking bash ring. Dirt jumpers often have stiff forks, so if you keep suspension fork, that should be ok. You'll want strong brakes. Strong wheels, DJ should already be setup with that. Fat tires, more street oriendted tread, not super tall spaced out knobbies. Your DJ should be more than adequate to start with, just lower the gearing and that will be good enough to get started.
Once you get better you can start to play with things. Once you get to a point youll want to upgrade hubs, mainly rear. Youll need a strong fast ratchet and strong, preferably steel freehub shell. then eventually start to think about a dedicated trials bike.

(Feel free to move the discussion if it's in the wrong area).

I've recently become really interested in trials riding (street trials in particular). But I'm not sure where to start.

I have a dirt jumper (Specialized P1). But it's not exactly the lightest. (Around 16 kg or 35lbs).

Due to living in Tasmania the odds of getting a 2nd hand trials bike are minimal, so it'd probably be brand new. The cheapest one I've seen is around $500 AUD from Tartybikes in the UK (not including shipping costs). In Australia the cheapest brand new one is over $1k.

I'm wondering whether it would be better to bite the bullet a buy a comp trials bike to practice on, or if I practice on the DJ and save up for a dedicated street trials bike?
 

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These guys got it right about trials being possible on any bike. BUT the short chainstay/high bottom bracket of the trials bike combined with the low gearing is what makes rear wheel stuff possible to the extent that even compared to the "competition" trials bike my "street" trials bike for rear to rear wheel moves is much more difficult So to for instance drop off any decent height and stay on the rear as if landing on a small target is way harder.
Do it with whatever you've got for now but get a trials bike when you can! It'll be an awesome upgrade.

Here's a couple clips of mine from both the street bike and the competition/seatless bike both at my favorite park, just for comparison sake.
 

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I'm using a DJ for the same thing. Got a good deal on the the frame an Octane One Void (steel was a primary requirement). Added my old rigid 29'r fork, new Race Face cranks, carbon bars, XT brake set w/ 180 rotors, and Vuelta 26 cross country wheels w/ bladed spokes. Total invested around $600. Expected it to last about a month before the the carbon bars failed or I folded one of the wheels. Two years later about the only issues I have are the 24mm rim width, the choice of 32x16 gearing (just a little to high), and as I progress the lack of braking control is becoming annoying. Somehow the QR hubs and track chain tensioners on the rear have given me no problems, but I know I've just been lucky so far. My advice would be save up for an appropriate trials wheel build, 4 piston brakes w/ 200mm rotors and the rest really doesn't matter all that much. Can't see how the difference between a DJ and competition trials frame will make much difference unless you are already competing at a high level. And the dirt jumper is going to be more fun all around.
 

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Another nod of agreement with all the previous comments here.

I started with a a DJ bike too. I eventually (or rather quickly) went to a street trials bike
- the new Hex. (New as in the refresh when Ali C went back to the Hex) I do a lot of learning and playing on my hard tail MTB still - including back wheel stuff. My buddy started working on basics on his MTB and then went to a true trials rig. He's much better (and progressed faster) at hopping around on the back wheel than me, but I'm better at putting together lines and applying the skills to the MTB. I'm sure it will eventually all even out though.
 
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