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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I've been out of the game for about 4 years, longer in the fact I didnt really pay attention to the scene when I was in it ( I still dont get the 29er fad, is it a fad? dont think so)


Either way my point: I dont know the recent makes/ specs/ trends for the past 10yrs. I've rocked a Santa cruz FS blur' 08 w/ fox float rl and front Talas rc for past 5 years and quite happy( maybe ignorantly so) in single track, x ctry less so and light down hill for the 5x / yr I used it.
I used my 06 gary fisher TJ as well, which is now sold. I've never been one for latest and greatest and cant swallow 1k for a bike I'll use 1x a wk 12-13x / yr max ( too many other hobbies and I cant bike 3 x a week like i used when there was no wife/ 4 yo and list of house projects)

Any suggestions for make /models for high entry level / mid level used HT bikes with 3 yo tech. for sub $400? Closer to 3 bills is preferred. To be used as a back up bike/ friend bike for single track/ x- ctry even as a rail trail bike.

Likes : 100mm front travel adjustable suspension w/ lockout. front and rear discs, mid level components.

Dont needs FS, dropper posts, 29ers ( they ride like tanks to me, 26 just seemed so nimble to me) or suggestions to frankenbike/ build (enough projects right now even though i would love to and learn as I go)

I've searched thru FB marketplace and CL and i get vague descriptions on the bike unless they're 1k or more then the info is there.
If i can get 3 or so make/ models that are up my alley then i can just search for them vs asking for the model searching the net for the specs, then asking seller more info etc... like year frame size and they usually respond with IDK's

I'd really appreciate any info. This post probably sounds whiny/demanding and I apologize, i'm just getting quite overwhelmed with all the diff bikes.

TY
 

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jcd's best friend
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Have you checked Pink Bike Buy/Sell for sellers in your area? You can probably find something pretty nice for that price range. Also, 29ers have changed quite a bit since they first launched ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
forgot about pink bike...

i'll chekc them out a higher seller class than Craigslist for sure.

apologies on the first post.. i was in my" get off my front lawn, why taped over my matlock VHS tape" rant mode
 

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If you have a university around you may see bikes go for sale at the end of the year here in May.

Lockout on a modern fork is mostly not required anymore, they've seriously gotten much better at staying stiff till you need them to compress, don't let that limit you.

I know a few guys that run framed bikes for fat bikes, they're done for the light duty you want. Some shops sell them too, although margins are very low for them.

For a gravel trail bike I sold a lot of Trek FX1, they're great light duty comfortable slightly rough terrain bikes.

Also, talk to your LBS! They often get customer trades, or have leads on good used bikes. Depending on your relationship with them (will you use them for service?) a good shop just wants to see people on bikes. The one I worked for had a basement full of quality stuff
 

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Where do you live? Your local Facebook marketplace and Craigslist are your best bet.

26 inch bikes died off completely a few years ago, except for dirt jumpers, beach cruisers and probably trials bikes? 650b wheels were popular everywhere briefly but are mostly small bikes and FS bikes now. B+ is popular (650B wheel with a wide rim and a 2.8-3" tire. Everything else is 29er or 29+. Most current 29er bikes will also fit a B+ tire, so some bikes are marketed as an either/ or option on the same frame.

You effectively went into a bike coma for a decade. A LOT has changed, including the way 29ers are designed. It never bothered me, but I hear a lot of people didn't like the first generation of 29ers either. They evolved and anyone willing to take one ride on one can make the transition and enjoy a much more capable bike. Otherwise, you can buy an old bike to go with your iPhone 3 and no one will judge you.
 

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BOOM goes the dynamite!
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Otherwise, you can buy an old bike to go with your iPhone 3 and no one will judge you.
Uh huh, at least you're not biased. Lots of us still enjoy our 26" bikes. OP wants a friggin' backup for under $400.

If you can find a 29+ for that please point me to it and I'll buy it immediately.
 

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Bikesexual
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whats the deal with Bikes direct? just notsupporting a LBS by not buying thru them?
I bought my starter from them, and my LBS put it together for me. I just think with a low budget, and not knowing what to get from the used market, they are definitely an option.

Just because you buy on-line doesn't mean you can't support your shop. I'm not as worried to buy used anymore because the little I've learned has helped. BD is not popular around here, but for starting out, no big deal. If you stick to it, you will be getting an upgrade when possible, and you can sell the starter bike. I also have their SS 29er, that doesn't see a lot of use but its a great little bike to kick around town. I threw drop bars on it, and its looking nice :)
 

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Uh huh, at least you're not biased. Lots of us still enjoy our 26" bikes.
The fact that virtually no one has made a bike around 26" tires in almost a decade is objective historical reality, not a bias. It depends on what you think of as "recent." There's nothing wrong with 26" tires if that's what you like. You'll just need to dip into what is quickly becoming the "vintage" market to do so. That means that there are TONS of that kind of bike on the used market, cheap. If OP would share his local, I'll gladly scour the regional used market to help him.

I didn't mean anyone should seek a 29+ bike in that price range, just explaining briefly where the market has gone over the past decade.
 

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BOOM goes the dynamite!
Occasionally Cranky
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The fact that virtually no one has made a bike around 26" tires in almost a decade is objective historical reality, not a bias. It depends on what you think of as "recent." There's nothing wrong with 26" tires if that's what you like. You'll just need to dip into what is quickly becoming the "vintage" market to do so. That means that there are TONS of that kind of bike on the used market, cheap. If OP would share his local, I'll gladly scour the regional used market to help him.

I didn't mean anyone should seek a 29+ bike in that price range, just explaining briefly where the market has gone over the past decade.
I guess I misunderstood your iphone 3 reference. Recent is definitely relative, but isn't vintage like 20+ years? Anyway, yeah. Definitely some bargains to be had on the more "recent" 26ers, which is OP's objective (cheap and capable). :)
 

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Your current bike is the backup/loaner bike. Look for a new main bike in the $4k (sub $3K preferred) range.
 

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With the way bikes (and smartphone s and lots of other things) have improved tremendously over the past five-ten years, anything close to that age might as well be considered vintage. If it still works for you, nothing wrong with that. I have an iPhone 4s that is basically useless because, just like modern bicycle tech, the basic hardware does not work with the new stuff.
 

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In this price range, I like going singlespeed with a bunch of used parts.

I built one that fit this exact category back when I was in college for less than $200 (rigid).
 

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I just did a quick search in my local area (~100 miles from me) on pinkbike, for any bikes in sizes Medium, large, or XL, under $500.

Most of these are going to be 26'ers, with 3x8 - 3x10 drivetrains, with ~100mm travel forks, and either mechanical, or entry level hydraulic disk brakes.

Of the things that came up, there were a few in the ~2010-2014 timeframe, that were were entry-mid level XC bikes. There was also 1-2 somewhat recent (2017-2018) models of similar category.

If it helps as a bit of a sanity check, I have a 2012 hardtail XC bike that has specs exactly like the above, and when I check BicycleBluebook, its valued at about ~$350. I think something like it is about what you'd hope for in that price range.

I used that bike as a commuter for 5 years, and then did some trail riding with it as well. I recently replaced it with a modern enduro bike, and the difference is noticeable out on the trails. The new bike doesn't drop the chain at all (1x drivetrain, with a clutched rear deraileur), the suspension actually does something, and the longer wheelbase/slacker head angle does inspire more confidence, and the lower bottom bracket does make it rail berms/etc easier.

That said, is the new bike worth $$$$ more than the old one? Thats a personal decision. I just thought I'd share what I've learned so far, in case that changed anything for you.

Good luck on your search.
 

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BOOM goes the dynamite!
Occasionally Cranky
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With the way bikes (and smartphone s and lots of other things) have improved tremendously over the past five-ten years, anything close to that age might as well be considered vintage. If it still works for you, nothing wrong with that. I have an iPhone 4s that is basically useless because, just like modern bicycle tech, the basic hardware does not work with the new stuff.
Smartphones vs bikes...still not a valid comparison. A bike doesn't suddenly cease to function when software advances beyond it's capability. Plenty of parts still available for all but the truly vintage (1" forks, etc).
 
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