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LA CHÈVRE
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I know I'm often one that gives info and impressions on Cannondales but this time around, I could use some feedback about the 2005 F300.

My girlfriend's birthday is soon and I want to buy her a mountain bike. Budget is limited so forget a Rush, forget a Prophet, forget Bad Ronald's Bad Boy and probably forget even the 2007 F4 I was looking at.

As I was leaving my Prophet for a Lefty service and shock rebuild last night, I noticed my LBS still has a medium 2005 F300... they would give me a good price on it. Only thing is, it has so-so parts (to be expected on a bike of that price range), v-brakes and a Manitou Six... and I have heard only bad things about that Manitou. Is it really that bad? I would have loved a model with a Headshok but there are no older bikes with it so I would have to spend quite a bit more and get a F4 (the brown even matches her skin pretty well but the lightning white one looks very nice) and I'm sure the manager will offer me a deal on it but it would still be a few hundreds more than the old F300...

Of course, she is not the kind of rider who descends like mad or likes to jump so maybe the F300 would be fine for her but I'd like her to have a nice bike... Or trying to find a used bike but I haven't seen too many used Cannondale around here...

What do you guys think?
 

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I have a 2004 F300 and I believe Cannondale upgraded the frame from a CAD2 frame in the 2004 to a Furio-X (CAD4?) on the 2005. The components are pretty similar to the stock 2004 F300 but the wheels and fork are different. Stock, it seemed my '04 was good enough for smooth fireroad and singletrack. I don't really know how good of a fork the Manitou is but the Judy TT pretty much stank. Eventually I upgraded the core components, the fork to a 85mm Marzocchi Marathon SL, the Crank to a Shimano Deore hollowtech w/ Octalink BB, brakes to Avid SD 7s and shifters/deraiulleurs to SRAM X-7. It is now a very decent XC/ light trailbike with dependable if not the most "bling-bling" of components. If your girlfriend starts riding more technical or longer rides, upgrading to more dependable/solid core components seem to make a difference. The Furio-X frame is also disc brake compatible (i think you will need to upgrade the stock hubs though) and is built for a longer travel 100mm fork. With the F300 you are basically buying the frame with just enough component wise so you can ride. As funds allow, with basic upgrades, you can get it up to a F600-ish level bike.
 
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