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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Ok i am looking to get my first mountain bike since i now live in the mountains! i want to by from an LBS and after shopping around there are two stores who i have decided have the best support and all around service. Now being that i'm just starting and i'm a teacher, i cannot afford much, but i do not want to go to some sporting goods store either! SO, one store can get me on a cannodale f7 for $550 and the other has a haro flightline sport for $450. They both have disc brakes, and the cannondale is pretty much shimano-ed out. I'm going to ride them both again tomorrow b/c i know i need to feel comfortable, but is the c'dale really worth it? and also i know there is a woman's fit f7....would that be better? i'm obviously a girl, 5'2" and am in good shape. i don't know if that's just hype,(which it is sometimes) or if the guy shoulda told me about it?

sorry it's alot. thanks for any input!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
ah, yes i forgot to check the haro. i know the c'dale has all shimano, but what grade he did not say. he said he only puts decent stuff on his bikes and won't make them cheap to save. as for the haro, i am guessing it's whatever comes standard. i'll check but this is the link to the page with the specs. http://www.harobikes.com/mtb/bikes/flightline_sport.php#specs
that guy didn't say he puts anything different like the cannondale guy did. ?
 

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My wife rides a Cannondale F400 (a couple of years old now) which is the women's specific model, and she thinks it makes a significant difference, but it depends on personal opinion.
She's 5'3" and the women's specific model was one of the few bikes we could find which would fit her properly. The big issue from what I understand is that for a certain height women tend to have shorter torsos and longer legs than men do. So when a bike gets fitted to a woman it'll often be a little too long from the seat to the handlbar.
In our experience very few bike shops took any of this seriously and would just shorten the stem and put the seat forward and tell the woman that it fits ok. This isn't so bad but it's worth knowing that this will change the way the bike rides somewhat.
A couple of other things to note about the womens specific Cannondales, they use thinner grips on the handlebar and special brake levers which are better for smaller hands. They also use a women's specific seat which is apparently a good idea as mens seats can cause discomfort.

Non of this means that you can't be perfectly happy on a non-women's specific bike, I just thought I'd mention this stuff as we found it pretty useful. The best way is to do exactly what you're doing and to give them a go, but it might be worth asking about the womens bike...
 

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According to C'Dale's site the F7 female specific model is V brake only. For the life of me I can't see any difference in the geometry between the regular and women's frame either in a small size. ???

I think the 'dale has a slightly cooler spec according to the site, and the frame does look nice. FWIW Cannondale are a somewhat more chi chi brand too, so yeah you will pay a bit of a premium for the name. :D
 

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local trails rider
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Test ride, test ride, test ride....

If a bike with slightly "inferior" parts fits and rides best, buy it anyway.
 

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the haro does have a lockout, which might be an advantage... and the discs are tektro, so it wont really be an improvement in performance over vbrakes, just ground clearance. i agree with just going by fit, itll get you the better bike
 

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ride hard take risks
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The Cannondale dealer is pulling your leg saying he only puts quality components on his bikes, he orders them spec'd from the factory just like your Haro dealer does. I would have a hard time trusting someone that wasn't straight forward with me. :rolleyes:

http://www.cannondale.com/bikes/08/cusa/model-8FS7D.html

Haro offers a really great product & there customer service is excellent, DHJill is very active on there forum if you ever have questions. At 5'2" the 14 should be a good fit and the dealer can help get you set up properly. :rockon:

http://forums.mtbr.com/forumdisplay.php?f=120

Specs are basically even both are using lower end components to meet a price point on a excellent frame. I would go with Haro on this one great company & DHJill is awesome. :cornut:
 

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Buy the one that pulls at your heart and feels the best to you when riding it. It is always nice to have a bike with better specs, but if you don't like it, specs mean nothing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Well the Haro got sold so I gotta wait for a new one to come in. He's got me going on a 16 in the Haro. I rode the Cannondale for a while yesterday. It needs some work to make it fit better as the bars are too far away for me for one thing. So I'm still unsure. I'm going to look at another bike store today with some women's models. Yea, I'm too wondering about the Cannondale and whether it's really worth all it's salt. It's a nice bike, but for the extra hundred, I dunno if I see much difference. I don't mind paying a bit more if I'm getting it.

I have read much on the Haro forum and it does seem to be a great company. I really appreciate everyone's opinions. Right now I really like the look of the Haro better and they guys at that store are great. So, I'm going to check the other store but I think I'm going to rule out the C'dale. I am worried that the adjustments won't work and them I stuck with a bike that doesn't fit....
 

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jobi6 said:
Well the Haro got sold so I gotta wait for a new one to come in. He's got me going on a 16 in the Haro. I rode the Cannondale for a while yesterday. It needs some work to make it fit better as the bars are too far away for me for one thing. So I'm still unsure. I'm going to look at another bike store today with some women's models. Yea, I'm too wondering about the Cannondale and whether it's really worth all it's salt. It's a nice bike, but for the extra hundred, I dunno if I see much difference. I don't mind paying a bit more if I'm getting it.

I have read much on the Haro forum and it does seem to be a great company. I really appreciate everyone's opinions. Right now I really like the look of the Haro better and they guys at that store are great. So, I'm going to check the other store but I think I'm going to rule out the C'dale. I am worried that the adjustments won't work and them I stuck with a bike that doesn't fit....
The Haro dealer should be able to call about availability of another one for you, if it's in stock you may be riding next week. 16" might be a little tall it wouldnt hurt to PM DHJill with the question, she's a straight shooter & wont BS you. Send a private message to downhilljill Heck you could even check availability with her!! :rockon:
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
yes he is ordering it already. he said it only take a couple days to get in. i'd be on it next week. rode some more bikes today but they didn't have much in disc brakes. after riding around on those discs, i just dont think i could bring myself not to get them!

and thanks i'm going to message her about the size too!
 

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jobi6 said:
yes he is ordering it already. he said it only take a couple days to get in. i'd be on it next week. rode some more bikes today but they didn't have much in disc brakes. after riding around on those discs, i just dont think i could bring myself not to get them!

and thanks i'm going to message her about the size too!
Awesome will be looking forward to the Porn when you get it. :cornut:

 

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jobi6 said:
yes he is ordering it already. he said it only take a couple days to get in. i'd be on it next week. rode some more bikes today but they didn't have much in disc brakes. after riding around on those discs, i just dont think i could bring myself not to get them!

and thanks i'm going to message her about the size too!
Be picky about getting the right size. My wife is 5'2" and she rides a 13".
 

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local trails rider
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I am getting a feeling that you have not yet seen a bike that is small enough for you.

(height is not the only thing to determine good fit but still...)
 
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