New to MTB, What bike should I get?

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    • #163765

      Hello community.  I’m new to MTB, and I’ve only ridden once on a trail in Williamsburg, VA.  I borrowed the bike but had a blast.  I’m interested in buying my own MTB but I don’t want to spend a fortune as I am a beginner.  I’m looking for something under $700.  I’ll being doing beginner/intermediate type single tracks and more open trails.  I don’t think I’ll be trying to do jumps or stuff like that.  Are there any recommendations for bikes that you may have that hit my price point?  I’ve been looking at the Trek Marlin 6 or 7.  The guy at Bike Beat (local bike shop) recommended the Marlin 7 or Trek X-Calibur 6.  Thank you for any advice or ideas.

    • #164073

      Bang for the buck, at $700 the Giant Talon 27.5 3 is a good bike.  If you are looking for a 29″ The Felt Nine 80 is nice for about $650. Also the GT avalanche sport looks good for $660. As far as the Treks go, both good, if you can find them for $700, I think I would go with the X-Calibur 6 for the Shimano brakes.

    • #164146

      It Welcome to the forum!

      It looks like of all the brands the shop carries, Trek is probably the most beginner-friendly brand.

      It’s hard to give you specific details on the bikes you mentioned because I suspect they’re not ’15 models and they also can come in two wheel sizes, so there’s a lot that we’d be guessing at. Generally speaking, these two models are incredibly similar and I don’t think you’d have a “grass would have been greener” moment if you pick up either one. The most important aspects to buying an entry level bike are to make sure you deal with a shop you trust and that is willing to handle any warranty or adjustment issues for you. That particular shop looks like you’ll be in good hands in that regard.

      If you do want more detailed suggestions, let us know the model year, wheel size and we’ll see if we can pull up the spec sheets for both and give you a more direct comparison.

    • #164608

      Thank you for your responses after looking at my budget I’m thinking I may need to lower the amount I can spend.  I think for what I’m looking for all I’d need is 27″ tires.  I’m not looking for climbing real big hills, I’d be hitting small local trails maybe 6-8 miles, with small hills, some stumps, roots, etc.  Considering I need to lower my budget I was looking at a Diamondback Axis? I think its called.  The pedals were plastic but I’d swap those out.  I’m thinking I should keep my budget down towards $400 hopefully I can still get a decent bike, as I am only a beginner, I haven’t ridden a bike in over 15 years.  Again thank you for the information you’ve provided.

      • #171493

        I wouldn’t worry about the cheap plastic pedals, I have a new full suspension bike and I use cheap plastic pedals. I actually like them. I generally ride wearing hiking shoes and the plastic pedals work well with them. Plus if I slip, the cheap plastic pedals do less damage to my shins than the metal ones.

    • #164686

      On Ebay you can still get a pretty good bike for $400. My first MTB (which is still one of my favorites to ride) I got for $200. It had a Rock Shox fork, so I knew it wasn’t a Walmart bike. That 15 year old Trek bike took me everywhere, and still does.

    • #164961

      I’m almost always in the camp of picking up used for big buck bang, but I’m going to suggest that you will probably be happy with the DB Axis. My reasoning behind this is that you’re at the very beginning of your MTB pastime. It’s going to go one of three ways. First, you’ll find that you hate it and will park the bike(This is pretty common. I bought a KHS off of Craigslist that had been ridden once and then parked in the garage and the Giant Yukon I purchased still had the manufacturing knobs on the tires). The next way it may go, you like it but don’t have a desire to do more than the casual low-key ride. Finally, you become addicted and want to ride every trail, everywhere on the face of the earth.

      The DB is going to help you in all three areas. If you drop the hobby, the new 27.5 bike is much more salable than a 3rd hand used bike that you bought for the same price. If you stick with it but keep it mellow with easy trails and short distances, the DB will last a long time and work well for you. If you fall down the rabbit hole, you’ll be upgrading your bike, no matter what $400 bike you bought and you’ll be happy you didn’t spend the $700 on a Trek hardtail that you’d still be upgrading.

      I vote you go for it.

    • #169515

      Thanks for your thoughts and input, I think I’ll go with the DB Axis, I think its the XE its $400 so that lowers the cost for me.  And as Schwim said if I love I can always start upgrading.  Thanks again.

    • #174837

      I have that DB axis XE your talking about. Picked it up from Dick’s for $300 on a sale. I’m in Richmond only 45 minutes from you. I’m also new to the sport and loving it so far! The DB has performed great for me. I’ve taken it on 8 or so local trails and put about 20-30 miles of good trail riding on it so far. Some of which has been the more advanced trails in my area. Bike including pedals have taken a beating on some rocks and front forks have soaked it up.  Brakes work great on the steep downhills too! Of course like most people here that drank the cool aid I want to upgrade but i think as long as nothing breaks im going to be able to ride this thing hard and really develop some skills on it before I will need to upgrade to a bike with better parts.

      only issues I’ve had is the gears sometimes slip on up hill climbs but I think that’s due to user error trying to learn the right gear and possible tuning needed and the seat has left my rear sore the last 2 long rides I had. That may go away with time in the saddle though.

    • #179241

      Get a Trek Remedy 9.8

    • #179290

      It’s all about what is comfortable for you. I went with the Fuel EX 7. Fit my price range and it’s not more bike than I could put to it’s full potential here in Kansas. Talk to your local bike dealers they are the experts.

    • #179309

      I’m going to sagest blowing out the budget.  take the Talon line for example.  For $700 you get ok bike, I had one,  but it’s decidedly low end,  drive train, wheels and shock.  Even at double the money for the Talon 1 it’s still coil sprung but rock shocks at least,  but it’s 2×10, upgraded drive trail level, and lighter(possibly tubeless capable) wheels.

      My experience was that I went through 3 bikes in rapid succession, until I got to a reasonable level, and if I’d been able to start there I could have saved a lot of $, but of course I didn’t know what direction I would go. $2K for a hard tail should get you into air sprung and tubeless ready, with a decent drive train.  I know that can be prohibitive, and for god sake don’t take out payments for a bike, but it really is a significant difference.  Chears!

      PS. I think I’m agreeing with Shwim.  It’s a rabbit hole. If you’re  not sure you’re in it the low end is right. If you’re falling head first it’s too late for you, and you should just try to avoid hitting sharp objects on the way down. 🙂

    • #179448

      Sounds like you’re in the same place I was about 2 or 3 months ago, and Schwim described exactly what was going through my mind when I bought my DB Axis.  I can tell you I haven’t regretted the purchase and I’ll probably settle in somewhere around that middle-of-the-road casual rider once the novelty of checking out new places and making quick strides at a new sport wears off.

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