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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok I am a newbie at SS but have a local trail that I will be riding a few times a week while my daughter is at hockey practice. Her practice last 3 hours between dryland and on ice so I don't want to sit there the whole time. There is a trail about 3 miles from the rink and it is a 7-8 mile loop. Great singletrack ride with a lot of up's and down's. The trail is Maybury which is in the metro Detroit area of Michigan so there are no long up hills. The trail includes a lot of turns and rolling hills. Nothing to taxing so I thought getting a SS would really improve my riding and make this trail a lot more challenging.

Alittle background on me I am 5'6", weigh 172 lbs and am 45 year old. I currently own a Ibis Ripley, Ventana El Padrino and a Ventana El Bastardo(which I am trying to sell). I love all 3 bikes but have found that the Ripley is my favorite so the Bastardo is expendable. I also love my El Padrino and thought about getting his brother the El Commandante for my SS but I don't want to invest that much into my first SS.

So I think I have gotten it down to 3 bikes. I want to buy it from a local dealer and these 3 bikes can be had from a local dealer. So what I am looking at is the Salsa El March, Trek Rig and the Spec Crave. I can't test ride any and the builds are similar. I know the Spec & Trek are Alum and the Salsa is Steel. I know the Spec will be 3 pounds lighter than the Salsa but also ride a tad harder since it is Alum.

The trail I will be riding is very rooty and rocky. I also like the Salsa/Trek dealer a lot more than the Spec dealer. Just wondering what you SS guys have to say about this. Let me know your thoughts.

Thanks,

Chuck
 

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Chuck- I agree with Andy R, the El Mariachi would be my choice...


Also, great work taking advantage of hockey-dad status!
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Wow never seen such a unanimous decision on mtbr before. That looks good for the El Mar. Now just got to get out on my brother in laws singlespeed to make sure I'll dig riding singlespeed. Also looking to add a cyclocross bike. My wife is going to kill me.
 

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Hi procos- I too ride Maybury on occasion. It is a good SS track because of the lack of long climbs and the twistyness of it. I have owned two ElMars, and like a moron, sold both of them. There is no comparison between the alternator dropouts and EBB's or sliding dropouts- the alternators are foolproof and slip-proof. I just picked up a Cannondale SS, which is fast and light, but not near the ride quality of the ElMar. You can't go wrong with it.
 

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Well 1 vote for the Crave, alum is stiff but also very efficient ,no flex & dropped chains like you get sometimes with steel & ti, no lost of power going forward .It also has a very nice carbon fork & the stock wheels set up tubeless very EZ.My stock bike with tubeless & SPD`s med size is around 21lbs & if ya want to put some other wheels & carbon bits it could be even lighter.I`m sure the other bikes are good as well but I also think they are more $ as well, good luck its always fun getting a new bike:)
 

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I'm with KP…. the crave is awesome. I suppose if you are looking for marathon riding, the steel would make a difference, but even in the root/rocky section we have here in this area my Crave is comfortable.
 

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Salsa has a great reputation in the warranty department. Trek has a very poor reputation in regards to warranties. Experiences vary but you can search the forums for those stories.

Just something else to consider, since you are going for new.
 

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I'm a Trek fan, but don't get that one. I rode a 2011 and a 2012 and the dropouts pulled way out of alignment within 15 minutes on each. The bike rides great until the back wheel goes sideways. The El Mariachi, however... If I wasn't so attached to my Civilian, I'd grab one of those in a heartbeat! Awesome bikes, and the dropouts are the coolest design I've ever played with. I like them a lot.
 

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The rig dropouts were craptastic. Maybe they are better now but the would not stay put and you had to use mutliple different wrenches to adjust them. Specialized make a decent product and their warranty is great, but their business practices are terrible.
 
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