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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm very new to mt bikes... rode bmx 20 years ago and very little on the road since then. when I first started looking I was drawn to the Marlin 6 but then I found the Talon 3. What I am trying to figure out is what makes the Marlin worth $100 more? They seem to be comparable bikes to me. Am I Overlooking something?
 

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jcd's best friend
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Usually the fork and drivetrain components will be the $100 difference in price. Sometimes it's the frame material such as the tier of aluminum used. Looking at both of those bikes, the $100 difference may just be the manufacturer wanting a few more bucks out of the deal. If you see yourself out growing that bike rather quickly, I would save around $1k to buy your first mountain bike. Doing so will get you into the next tier of bikes that will let you have a bit more fun with better components.

On this forum, we've had a few posts about riders who bought a starter bike and ended up selling it a month later to buy the next tier up. For around $1k, you can get yourself a really nice Diamondback Sync'r! They do go on sale every now and then and will drop under $1k.

https://www.diamondback.com/mountain-bikes/hardtail/syncr-d42

Also if you are patient, you can get some really good end of season deals on 2019 bike models too! Most of these deals may pop up sometime in August and through the fall.
 

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They are pretty comparable, the only real difference I can find in components his the giant has an acera rear derailleur versus the altus onthe trek. The Acera is a better/smoother derailleur according to everything I've read.
there are the thing that would make a difference to me is the giant is a 27.5 versus the 29er trek, I like 27.5 better personally, 29's just seemed big and slow on the bikes I test rode.

honestly though ride them both and get the one you like better, the one that feels better riding. Don't let any differences in components or such make up your mind, if something is truly terrible you can upgrade it.

If it were me and I liked both of them about the same riding them, I would pick the ones I like the color on better.... Color is pretty much the only thing you can't change about it....
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thank you for the reply! I really need to keep my budget in the $500-600 range for now as I've barely been on a bike in 15 years and the majority of my riding will be paved trails with some venturing onto the offroad trails in the area so I don't anticipate my skill level exceeding the bikes capabilities soon.
 

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Single(Pivot)and Happy
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You can get a Motobecane that meets all your requirements for $350 brand new. Components are on par with the other two choices you mention.
 

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I'm with you on setting a budget and sticking to it, people will always tell you "just spend a couple hundred more and you can get away better bike!" Budget of $500, go up to $750 and get a, $750 budget? Go $950 and get a sync'r, your budget is &1000? For just a couple of hundred dollars more you can get a "real" hard tail. $1500 budget? Well shoot, that's almost full suspension territory!!! Etc, etc....

My budget was $600 and I looked at the trek Marlins, giant talons, specialized rockhopper, and a few others. Like I said above all the 29ers I tried the wheels just seemed ridiculously huge, so it was down to the 27.5 bikes. I pretty much liked them all so in the end it really did come down to just the color of the specialized pitch sport at $625.
I've been happy with it. I added a dropper post once I found out what those were, (and will never not have one) I got a brand X ascend II. I also recently changed out the stem from the 80mm that came on it to a 45mm. I could only do that because I'm basically in between a large and extra-large and went with the extra large. The large fit me fine but seemed like it was almost too small. I'm glad I went with the XL because I don't think I could have added a 45 mm stem to the large and been okay....

Looking at those cheap motobecanes, I'm not impressed. Yes you get good components for the price, but the one thing you can't change, the geometry, is basically what you were buying local bike shops 10-15 years ago...They have steep head tube angles, long chain stays and high bottom brackets, while the trend these days is for slacker head tubes, shorter chainstays, and lower bottom brackets all of which give better handling.... The motobecane also come with ridiculously long stems, an 80mm stem on a small? 105mm on a large? Yikes!
 

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Single(Pivot)and Happy
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The OP said he would mainly be riding on paved paths. For what it's worth, I just put my 75mm stem back on because the 50mm did not work as well. It matters what works for the individual and a slacked out frame will ride like crap for what the OP intends to use the bike for.

Once the OP puts in some saddle time and gets used to his bike and builds his fitness and stamina, he'll probably start riding more trails. Believe me, the Motobecane frame and superior components will ride as well or better than the other two choices. Some people forget that everyone was riding fine before the new geometry frames came to town. People could ride 26" wheeled bikes very well. Eight or nine or ten speeds does not mean one cannot get out into nature and experience a great time.
 

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Bikesexual
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Fwiw, I started on a Motobecane 526ht. $300.00 bucks, and it got me going for sure.

After a few months, I was already looking to upgrade, and got a Cannondale Trail3. The fork alone, was night and day. Just an XC30, but a lot better than the Suntour.

Looking back, I should have saved a bit more, but no regrets.

I used to think $700 was insane for a bike.
 

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jcd's best friend
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Fwiw, I started on a Motobecane 526ht. $300.00 bucks, and it got me going for sure.

After a few months, I was already looking to upgrade, and got a Cannondale Trail3. The fork alone, was night and day. Just an XC30, but a lot better than the Suntour.

Looking back, I should have saved a bit more, but no regrets.
Was your experience like this when you bought it?

Wheel Mode of transport Bicycle tire Bicycle wheel rim Land vehicle
 

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I was in the same boat as the OP last year. Lucked up on a deal on a specialized pitch expert and I also hadn't ridden a bike in years. I thought I will do some paved paths and some flat trails until one day after I ride I thought to myself, let me see what this off-road thing is like. I took the bike down an intermediate or beginner trail and loved it. As many say, I didn't know what I didn't know but I had fun trying to hold my own going over the roots, rounding the turns and making those climbs. I went several times last summer and then started to read more about the air fork and other options as well as get info from Battery and JCD above. And yes they hit my threads with post and pics like the above one, its the welcoming committee.

After last season of riding and researching, I decided I wanted more this year and looked at selling my bike to upgrade and I felt like JCD mentioned that $700 was pricey for a bike but my new Honzo will double that amount and I will still be in cheaper than upgraded what I started with. IF your budget is $500, use that to get started and get in shape and take a chance at a trail to see what you think. If you like and want more, test out some other bikes with better components and keep your starter as a family fun bike or pass it on to another newbie to learn from. Regardless, grab a helmet and some good pedals and enjoy your new hobby
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I'd really like to spend more but gotta make sure I get into shape and get onto the trails. Plus I figure I'll be getting a decent bike for my 10 year old before long if he takes any interest in the hobby
 

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Spend what you can and just start riding. Who knows, the 10 year old may take your first bike to learn on if not a huge diff in size and then you can start the search for another. Let us know what you end up deciding on and post pics


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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jcd's best friend
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I'd really like to spend more but gotta make sure I get into shape and get onto the trails. Plus I figure I'll be getting a decent bike for my 10 year old before long if he takes any interest in the hobby
How tall is your 10 year old? My daughter turned 11 and she is almost 5' tall. I had to buy her an adult extra small due to her size! Now my other daughter (12) wants a mountain bike lol!
 

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They are pretty comparable, the only real difference I can find in components his the giant has an acera rear derailleur versus the altus onthe trek. The Acera is a better/smoother derailleur according to everything I've read.
there are the thing that would make a difference to me is the giant is a 27.5 versus the 29er trek, I like 27.5 better personally, 29's just seemed big and slow on the bikes I test rode.

honestly though ride them both and get the one you like better, the one that feels better riding. Don't let any differences in components or such make up your mind, if something is truly terrible you can upgrade it.

If it were me and I liked both of them about the same riding them, I would pick the ones I like the color on better.... Color is pretty much the only thing you can't change about it....
Honesty, I have a Reid x trail and altus is an insanely good derailleur. Reid x trail is a great budget bike for everyone if you are looking for one.
 

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Thank you for the reply! I really need to keep my budget in the $500-600 range for now as I've barely been on a bike in 15 years and the majority of my riding will be paved trails with some venturing onto the offroad trails in the area so I don't anticipate my skill level exceeding the bikes capabilities soon.
I rode a giant talon for the last 8 years. I can't speak to the other bike but Giant makes a great product in my opinion. In that price range you should find a pretty good bike and the used market where I live is pretty strong as well. Even in these times
 
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