New Avid MTBer Looking for Wisdom

Forums Mountain Bike Forum New Avid MTBer Looking for Wisdom

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    • #108326

      Hey everyone! I am brand new to mountain biking (1 month) and have a few questions for everyone. I was originally purchasing a bike simply to get to and from campus, but I love adrenaline-fueled activities, and thought I’d go 2 for 1 and get into mountain biking as well! I love the traveling aspect coupled with building up your body for scenic adventures. Knowing nothing about bikes, I started with a $520ish Giant Revel mtb at my lbs. I really enjoy it, but can tell I’ll upgrade when possible. I’m sure bike quality is noticeable as the price hikes up there. I must ride fairly hard, because I’ve had to learn how to tweak my bike after days on a trail already. I can tell tlc is important. Alright, here’s where I need your brutally honest insight:

      When I upgrade in the future, I think I’d like a downhill bike, simply because those trails look amazingly fun. I think downhill is great and I love how hardy the bikes are constructed. But are these bikes decent all around bikes as well? If I needed to ride it 2 miles XC across town, would it be terrible or ok? Obviously not as good as a bike made for distance, but could it do the job ok? Only asking because I may not always be around dh trails. Also, how do freeride and technical bikes differ? And finally, how far do you think I can push my Giant Revel? If I came across a DH track or anything with jumps/rocks/technical, could I take it on it?

      Next, and don’t condemn me, I’m currently in Nebraska, at least until mid-summer. As far as I know there’s no extreme or downhill tracks, just your average trails. I’m wanting to get armor (maybe Fox torso, Deviant II helmet) so that I can push myself without hesitation. This is probably overkill for my location, correct? Also, instead of ordering online when the time comes, where could I find something such as a Deviant II helmet in-store? My lbs doesn’t carry anything like that, big surprise. Just wondering if there’s known chain retailers I should know about.

      Any and all feedback would be super appreciated! I have been reading the forums and riding as much as possible, mtbing is really just a neat sport that I’d like to enjoy and become proficient in. Thanks!

    • #108327

      Unless you are moving to an area that is actually going to have DH trails, you might as well stick to a bike that is going to fit your usual riding situation. What kind of trail do you usually ride? The amount of suspension in a DH bike will absorb a lot of the power of your pedal stroke as well. If you were to ride it cross-country or trail it would add up to a lot more work, but I guess it would work. You might want to look at "all-mountain" bikes if you want the most versatile ride.

      I can’t speak too much in the area of armor, but I don’t see any reason for it in cross country riding. I ride cross country all the time and I don’t find it feasible or necessary.

    • #108328

      You’ll be miserable pedaling a dh bike up a hill. There’s a very good reason why you see downhilkers walking anything that isn’t pointing downward.

      If you want to play with downhill and need to do some xc, you want to look at all mountain bikes. More than enough suspension for everyone but the hardest downhillers and not quite as much an anvil as the dh bikes.

    • #108329

      You might what to check the fork on your Rvel. I just saw the the fork on those may have been recalled. I’m sure there is something on Giant’s webpage about it.

    • #108330

      Wait, there are hills in Nebraska??

      Seriously though, as already mentioned, look for a trail or all mountain bike. Something like a Trance or Reign from Giant.

    • #108331

      I agree with much of what was stated above: try something with 5-6 inches of travel for a great all-arounder. In reality, you don’t need a DH bike to actually ride DH trails–a 6 inch travel bike will easily let you sample some lift-served riding. Heck, I rode a DH trail on my hardtail 29er the other day. I had ridden it on my full on DH bike the day before, and while it wasn’t quite as fun and I wasn’t nearly as fast, it was still doable.

      As for armor/protection, no one can tell you how much or how little you should wear–it all depends on your comfort level. If you’re looking to buy protection (or anything bike related) online, check out and

    • #108332

      I would look at all mountain bikes because they still have a good amount of travel but better all around bike than a downhill bike.

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