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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Playing with the idea of a hard tail for my son and there are so many to choose from within a certain price range.

Looking at the $1k tp $1400 range and sticking with 27.5" or 29" wheels, what do you think is the best package? Good components, durable, a bike a new rider can grow into.

I recently bought my younger son a Marin Nail Trail 6 and it seems to be a stout little bike, solid and good riding bike. Today I was internet window shopping the Marin site, as well as Orbea (hey, now that I got one, I gotta look), the Laufey in particular, Norco's HT bikes and couple others I think.

What are your opinions on good HT bikes in that price range?

Orbea Laufey
Bicycle wheel Bicycle tire Tire Bicycle frame Wheel


Norco Fluid HT3

Marin Hard Tails
 

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Seems to be a good starting point. Decent fork and components and you can always upgrade as they wear out. It is setup 27.5+. Not sure if you were specifically going for that. If you don't care about brand, and you know what size you need, bikesdirect is still probably the best value out there.
 

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My wife just got a Scott Scale 980 for around $1k. I'm pretty shocked at how well this bike is equipped. NX Eagle, tubeless ready, Maxxis tires, RS air fork, Shimano hydro brakes and its damn light at around 27 pounds. Also a frame you can upgrade the heck out of.

Its definitely an XC bike so geometry is geared towards pedaling efficiency rather than slacker, more "trail" oriented.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Diamondback Sync'r and Mason 2 are all pretty good for your price range
I like the looks of the Sync'r better than the Mason 2, longer travel fork (not sure if the Recon is an upgrade from the Judy RL).

If a dropper was part of the purchase the price would be about the same. Think that would be the preferred bike?
 

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I like the looks of the Sync'r better than the Mason 2, longer travel fork (not sure if the Recon is an upgrade from the Judy RL).

If a dropper was part of the purchase the price would be about the same. Think that would be the preferred bike?
Yes, I prefer the Sync'r over the Mason as well. You can get a Brand X ascend dropper for about $110

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I looked at what felt like every single hardtail in this price range a few months back, as I was pretty sure that's what I wanted for a while. I ended up going a different direction, but maybe my research can help out.

I found that the best deals were the Nukeproof Scout Race, Whyte 901, and Vitus Sentier.

Since then, the Diamondback Sync'r is really the only bike that I'd say can really compete with them in terms of value.
 

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I think it's probably pretty hard to find a bad bike in this category, the 27.5+ / 29 size trail bike, from a major company.

I picked a Timberjack in a lower build because it's versatile. I wanted to use a trailer hitch that goes on a QR, as well as a rack, and didn't immediately need a dropper, and it's got three bottle mounts. But if I wanted TA or a dropper in the future the frame would support it. If you don't mind which axle style you get, and don't care whether you have lower rack mounts, just go ahead and pick anything.
 
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