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Buying 29er Advise Please

Watto2's picture

By Watto2 - Posted on 21 December 2012

NB: Originally posted elsewhere on the Global Riders Network and appears via syndication.

Relitively new to the sport,i m doing about 50% road and 50% trail at the moment i m going to spend about ($2000)give or take, on a bike,Ive been looking at dual and hardtail,so far looking at Giant xtc comp 1,$2300,Giant Anthem x 1,$2300Specialized Camber 29,$2000,Scott Spark comp 29,$1800.currently riding a tired mongoose tyax so its all gonna be an improvement,ive only had a quick ride on the spark and felt great,sat on the others been in and out of 6 bike shops,like the feel of a dual but totally biked out with overload of info so a few of your ideas would be appreciated.

[Mod. moved to MTB gear]

chaddemi's picture

You cant go past a Giant full suspension 29r.

Saw the other day at Malaga Cycles a brand new Giant Trance 29r for $2599 and thats got sram X9 gear on it too......

Malaga do have some demo giants available to try if your interested......

Watto2's picture

So far I can trial a giant for $200 or a Specialized for $80,price comes off the bike if i buy a specialized not sure on giant

Muninjitsu's picture

I ride an XO Anthem 29er, very nice ride and giants have best bang for buck. A friend has the 29er trance which is a very nice machine, with the longer travel it will eat up everything, however it is about 2kg heavier than the Anthem.

Oldernslower's picture

The main issue is what you intend to do with the bike. If going to stay with the 50/50 road/trail then Hardtail may be better in the long run. But if you going to ride 25/75 and ride rougher ground then FS would be beneficial. If you intend to do some long distance enduros, then unless you are at the pointy end of your class a FS would probably be better. If you ride smooth or 'manicured' trails and not much over 2 hours, HT may be better. If you are under 165cm then a 27.5 may be better than a 29r if you riding tight single track. I'm 167cm and a 29r just doesn't quite fit on tight single track, taller people have less hassles with 29r.

So it depends.

FWIW Giant gives you bang for buck BUT having had a Giant XTC 29r I didn't like the handling on tight stuff.
Specialized has better handling IMO and bang for buck is close to giant.

Test ride the bikes in your price range on the terrain you most likely to ride - and, to coin a phrase, choose the bike shop before you choose the bike Smiling and, everything else being equal, choose the lightest bike you can and/or the easiest to upgrade. If you don't like the saddle or bars or whatever ask for it to be changed before you make the deal, eg ask for the pedals of your choice to be thrown in.


mxracer92's picture

maybe also look into specialized epic.. even the base model has got the brain on rear. so this will help with road duties.

not a huge fan of giant .. its just my personal opinion ..

i feel giant is like falcon/commadore of the bike industry ( flood the market , re-sale popular but dont hold their value )

although its prob not in your 2k budget , but maybe keep lightly used 2nd hand bikes an option

whatever u buy , hope u enjoy it

Antsonline's picture

Dont buy a bike based on 'bang for your buck' / 'its got an XT rear mech' etc.

Components break, wear out, get replaced fairly quickly. Buy the bike that fits you best, that rides the best (very hard to tell without actually riding one) and is the best supported (bikes break too - get one that has a good reputation for warranty).

Fit is key. Specialized will include a BG Fit with the bike - so you will get set up correctly from the door. it saves you hassle - and also your mates a load of hassle! They wont need to hear "do you think my bars are too high? My saddles too far back" etc.
It also ensures that the shop isnt selling you what they have in stock rather than what actually fits you.

Get the best frame you can buy. Then think about fork quality. Then wheel quality, then rear shock (and really importantly - how the suspension is designed - does it bob etc.), after all that, think about cranks first, then cassette, then brakes, finally gears.

Good luck - enjoy whatever you end up with!

TheOneRing's picture

Sounds like you are a little overloaded but this is an important decision so it is worth spending the time to get it right.

As Oldernslower has indicated, you need to first work out how you are going to use the bike and where. A dual suspension will give you access to a broader range of trails and will allow you to grow more as your interest grows. What a number of people in your situation will do is throw a set of slick tyres on your existing hardtail, use it for road/commuting and the get a dual suspension bike to play with. Once you decide on the type of bike, you can focus on fit and feel.

As Antsonline indicates, all bikes are a little different which is why it is important to jump on each one. A decent shop will help you out with some basics like saddle height and position, stem length etc before your test ride. At this point, don't worry too much about the brand but focus on which bike feels the best.

Once you have tried the options, know how they feel, then look at the spec/price etc and make a decision.

In terms of brands, I can't comment on the Specialized or Scott bikes. I know that Giant will give you a lifetime frame warranty and my buddy is on to his 4th Giant mountain bike. He has used the frame warranty in the past with no issues. I have had 2 Giant road bikes with no problems. The road bike fits me well so I use it. The mountain bike didn't fit me well so I have bought other brands. Make sure that you keep an open mind in the test and good luck!

Watto2's picture

Thanks to those of you who actually offererd advise,including glenrock riders yesterday,all the local bike shops etc.its good to see that some people are human and are willing to help and not have there head shoved where the sun dont shine.

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