Jamis Dakar XC Sport Mountain Bike 2012 Reappraisal

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  1. Reply

    Road Bike Or Mountain Bike? I’ll be riding along concrete trails a lot, but I also want to be able to ride in my backyard which is rather hilly. I get tired easily so I need something easy, but I don’t want it easy enough and “loose” enough to go every whichaway when I decided to ride through rocky and rough terrain.

    so which would work, road bike or mountain bike?

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    1. Reply

      Mountain bike. The mountain bikes are comfortable and easy to ride. When you get tired, they have plenty of low gears so that you can pedal fast, not hard. You also have the option of getting suspension with the mountain bikes. I wouldn’t get a FS bike (Full Suspension) if I were you, but definitely front. The hard tails (Front suspension only) are fun to ride, lighter than the FS bikes, and still offer some cushioning.
      The tires you use will have a lot of impact on your riding too. Don’t get anything too aggressive, or knobby or your pavement riding will be tough.
      Lastly, get the best bike you can afford. It will be worth it. Get a cheap bike and riding wont be fun. Then your money will have been wasted anyway.

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  2. Reply

    What Are Good Mountain Bikes? I’m looking for a mountain bike with speed and a good Uphill climb system.

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    1. Reply

      Mountain bikes aren’t exactly known for their speed. Speed comes with a road bike that has thinner & taller 700C road tires & a higher gear ratio. Hill climbing is another story.

      The smaller the gears on the front & the larger on the rear converts to more torque & better hill climbing power. Examples — compare the two bikes listed below. The first bike (Dawes Haymaker 1000) has a 22/32/42T chainring on the front & a 11-30T rear cassette or cog. The lowest gear would be 22 teeth on the front & 30 on the rear.

      Second bike (Motobecane 300 HT) has a 28/38/48T front chainring and a rear cog of 12-28T. Now the lowest gear possible is 28 teeth on the front & 28 on the rear. The first bike would have better hill climbing power.

      Look for a quality bike from a real bicycle shop – or Bikes Direct.com. The best ones will have both double walled rims & a cassette/freehub – not a freewheel.

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  3. Reply

    Trek Calypso As Mountain Bike? I just bought a Trek Calypso out of the newspaper from a very nice couple. They were telling me that it was a mountain bike and they have put new tires on it which look like they’ll do the job. My only concern is that everything I’ve seen on the internet labels the calypso as a “cruiser”. Is it possible to use it on trails and non/paved areas? This is important as I live in the mountains. Thank you!

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    1. Reply

      Mountain biking is a sport where people go very fast on bicycles up, and down mountains on rugged trails crossing streams, logs, rock drops, and other high speed obstacles. These Bicycles used for this sport do not dub well as urban, commuter bikes, or road bikes. They are made specifically for Mountain Biking. If you are interested in beginning to mountain bike, the Calypso is not the bicycle for you. Hence the name Calypso, it may be a good bike for a resident of the city of New Orleans, rather than say, Boulder CO. If you are interested in cruising town (not road biking), taking trails and shortcuts when you want to; and possibly going trail riding on saturdays with friends, then you have purchased an ideal bike.

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  4. Reply

    BUYING A MOUNTAIN BIKE? Yo, wanna start some off-road mountain biking so want to buy a bike, now don’t know whether to splash out on a decent one or just start off with something cheapy from halfords… Is it worth buying a cheaper one for now to see how I get on with it? Never ridden really since i was younger

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    1. Reply

      First off, you’ll love mountain biking and are joining a very good community! ?

      For a nice, entry level functional mountain bike that don’t have limitations against the standard trail with a few rocks, there are 2 things I’d say are absolutely quinetessential: a cassette type hub (at least a 24 speed is the easy way to determine this), and double wall rims, for your safety and the durability of the bike. Also, the more you spend up front, the better bike you’ll get… it is MUCH cheaper getting your components on the bike than upgrading.
      As a rule of thumb, 500 dollars will get you into this range. Go to some bike stores and hop on some bikes!

      My gut says to look into a 2011 Specialized hardrock given your circumstances. Bare bones and tough as nails… even the 2011 base model, priced at $420 fits the bill. (I actually do not have this type of bike, but for a nice entry level to be proud of, this is what I’d get). If you’re hoping to expand your hobby, please read on.

      Nice aluminum brands that could serve you well in that range would include Specialized (Hardrock, Rockhopper), Trek (4300, 4500, 6 series), Gary Fisher (now a Trek line), Cannondale (F7, F5, Trail SL 3), and Giant (Rincon, Yukon, Revel 0, 1). 29ers (29 vs 26 inch wheels) have their strenghts and weaknesses. They are smoother rolling and will roll over larger bumps with ease. You can go distances with less effort, but they will cost more. However, back to basics, smaller wheels equal more accelleration up slopes and more techical handling. Some 29ers in your range are the Giant Talon, Specialized Hardrock sport disc 29, Cannondale Trail 4 29er, and several Gary fisher Models (note, Gary Fisher’s geometry is awesome for some, a nightmare for others as is has a longer, more aggressive cockpit length which isn’t always the best for leisurely riding. Disc brakes are nice for stopping on a dime in wet circumstances.

      I’d highly recommend one of these brands over a store brand such as Pacific, Mongoose, Diamondback, (exception, they do make some nice models), which you will compromise on the frame. The frame is the core of the bike, which is the part you’ll be keeping as you upgrade. So getting a model of bike in each brand that has that nice frame tier jump will make you a bit more futureproof. Trek’s don’t give you a nice frame until the 7 series, which is much over budget, Cannondales arguably make the best frame, Trail SL, for that price range. Specialized Rockhoppers get a frame upgrade over the Hardrocks, however, it is less durable. Giant Talon 29er is the Aluxx SL vs the regular aluminum.

      Ok, I could go on and on.. I’ll stop here, but here’s the thing… for the money, its a balance of components, weight, and strength. Find a bike that fits, with a reasonably nice and adjustable fork (your most expensive upgrade when it comes to it, hydraulic lockout is nice, so you can turn it off and save your power when on the road while in motion). They each have dramatic differences. But take your time and visit some bike shops.

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    • Alex
    • February 18, 2014
    Reply

    New To Mountain Bikes? Am getting into mountain biking and don’t know much and i want to know the basics like what are good brand and the ones to stay away from also what type of tires to run i have a gaint rincon

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    1. Reply

      First off, you’ll love mountain biking and are joining a very good community! ? To start, if you have a Giant Rincon, you have a decent entry level bike. I might suggest you work with that until your skills improve.

      For a nice, entry level functional mountain bike that don’t have limitations against the standard trail with a few rocks, there are 2 things I’d say are absolutely quinetessential: a cassette type hub (at least a 24 speed is the easy way to determine this), and double wall rims, for your safety and the durability of the bike. Also, the more you spend up front, the better bike you’ll get… it is MUCH cheaper getting your components on the bike than upgrading.
      As a rule of thumb, 500 dollars will get you into this range. Go to some bike stores and hop on some bikes!

      Nice aluminum brands that could serve you well in that range would include Specialized (Hardrock, Rockhopper), Trek (4300, 4500, 6 series), Gary Fisher (now a Trek line), Cannondale (F7, F5, Trail SL 3), and Giant (Rincon, Yukon, Revel 0, 1). 29ers (29 vs 26 inch wheels) have their strenghts and weaknesses. They are smoother rolling and will roll over larger bumps with ease. You can go distances with less effort, but they will cost more. However, back to basics, smaller wheels equal more accelleration up slopes and more techical handling. Some 29ers in your range are the Giant Talon, Specialized Hardrock sport disc 29, Cannondale Trail 4 29er, and several Gary fisher Models (note, Gary Fisher’s geometry is awesome for some, a nightmare for others as is has a longer, more aggressive cockpit length which isn’t always the best for leisurely riding. Disc brakes are nice for stopping on a dime in wet circumstances.

      I’d highly recommend one of these brands over a store brand such as Pacific, Mongoose, Diamondback, (exception, they do make some nice models), which you will compromise on the frame. The frame is the core of the bike, which is the part you’ll be keeping as you upgrade. So getting a model of bike in each brand that has that nice frame tier jump will make you a bit more futureproof. Trek’s don’t give you a nice frame until the 7 series, which is much over budget, Cannondales arguably make the best frame, Trail SL, for that price range. Specialized Rockhoppers get a frame upgrade over the Hardrocks, however, it is less durable. Giant Talon 29er is the Aluxx SL vs the regular aluminum.

      Ok, I could go on and on.. I’ll stop here, but here’s the thing… for the money, its a balance of components, weight, and strength. Find a bike that fits, with a reasonably nice and adjustable fork (your most expensive upgrade when it comes to it, hydraulic lockout is nice, so you can turn it off and save your power when on the road while in motion). They each have dramatic differences. But take your time and visit some bike shops.

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  5. Reply

    BMX Or Mountain Bike? What kind of bike is best to get for just going on roads and grass and going fast, Mountain bike or BMX?

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    1. Reply

      Mountain bikes have multiple gears. BMX is a one speed.
      For going fast, multiple gears is the way to go. Therefore, look at mountain bikes. Suspension also allows you to go faster over nasty terrain. BMX bikes are meant to be ridden out of the saddle. Try riding off road for 10 to 20 miles out of the saddle with no suspension. With a mountain bike, this becomes an enjoyable day of riding.
      Good Luck

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  6. Reply

    What Are Good Mountain Bikes? 1. What are mountain bike brands?
    2. How do you pick out a mountain bike?
    3. What is their price range?
    I’m going to be using this bike to urban mush with my husky.

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    1. Reply

      1. What are mountain bike brands? “Good” mountain bikes are found at your authorized, independent, knowledgeable, friendly, local BICYCLE shop. Not K-Mart, Target or the dreaded Wally World. Tons of good brands…Giant, Raleigh, Trek, Fuji, Cannondale, etc., etc. Look at the quality of the components on each individual bike. Price usually tells all. The more it costs – the better the bike.

      2. How do you pick out a mountain bike? You go to the bike shop & TEST RIDE them.

      3. What is their price range? Your basic “entry level” mountain bikes will start in the $450 – $500 price range. They can go into the thousands of dollars. Get one based on “where & how” you will be riding. If you won’t be going on any severe off-road trails, you don’t NEED a mountain bike. Read “Bicycles: How to Choose” on this link…
      http://www.rei.com/learn/expert-advice/bicycle.html

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  7. Reply

    All-mountain Versus A Cross-country Mountain Bike? Can someone clarify the difference between these two types of mountain bikes? I was told that a cross-country bike with a full suspension is the same as all-mountain.

    I’m assuming all-mountain means it can handle hard trails and a bit of downhill. Can a cross-country with full suspension do the same?

    I need a bike that can handle long rides on flat trails as well as moderately advanced tough mountain trails.

    Thanks!

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    1. Reply

      All mountain and cross country bikes are VERY different things…

      XC bikes are essentially the road bikes of the mountain world. Lightweight builds and maximum pedaling efficiency are the big factors. Climbing is also much more prevelant in XC riding so the angles are geared to match that need. XC bikes will generaly be VERY upright, 71-72 degree head angles for quick handling and agility, 74 degree or so seat angles for good power transfer and, at the very most, 100mm or just shy of 4 inches of travel. Jumps and drops will snap XC frames. Often times the shocks will also have lockouts to further assist in power transfer on climbs and smooth flats.

      All Mountain bikes are bikes which pedal well enough to handle XC rides but which have the angles and the strength to ride just about anything you’ll come across. They’re efficient pedalers but have more travel, usually 160mm or so, and are built to be great all around bikes. You can pedal it all day or take it to a bike park and hit most everything there but the really gnarly DH stuff. All Mountain bikes are perfect for people who dont want to have a ‘stable’ of bikes for their riding needs.

      As an example, take Trek’s lineup…
      The Fuel is the XC platform; it has a 70 degree head angle, 73.5 seat angle, and 100mm travel front & rear. Those angles make it easy to pedal uphill and on flat but make it downright sketchy going back down or at high speed on rough terrain.
      The Remedy is their All Mountain platform; it has a 68 degree head angle but still a relatively steep 73 degree seat tube angle, and 160mm travel front and rear. This means it’ll still pedal very well with the steep seat angle, though you’ll suffer a bit more climbing with the extra weight and travel… and can descend with just about anything but a DH bike with it’s slacker 68 degree head angle and longer travel.

      Modern All Mountain bikes are amazing in my opinion… If I had to own just one bike, it’d probably be the 2010 Giant ReignX0 or the new Santa Cruz Nomad carbon… an All Mountain bike like either of those and you can ride anything but DH and never worry.

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  8. Reply

    Should I Get A Mountain Bike Or A Regular Comfort/cruiser Bike? I’m looking for a bike that I will ride to school every morning and back (I live about 3/4 of a mile away) and that will last a long time. I hope for it to cover a lot of ground with each pedal, so I considered a mountain bike, which I think is durable and made for speed. But, on the other hand, is a regular cruiser somehow better? My friend has one, and it’s pretty comfy when you sit down and all, but the when you change the speeds it doesn’t really feel different and you have to pedal a lot to cover the same ground my old (now flat) 5-speed bike did. I’m consider either Walmart or K-Mart (cheap! :D) and around $100.

    Your thoughts?

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    1. Reply

      Mountain bikes are not as fast as a road bike, but for the durability you can’t go wrong with the mountain bike.
      I’m not really keen on the comfort/cruiser style. They look goofy and it appears they would lack the precision control of an MTB.
      You don’t seem interested in riding trails, but the “cheap” bikes are not really suited for severe use and should be considered just for “show”. I would try to save a few more dollars and get something from a dedicated sporting goods store (at the very least) that has a bike repair facility. You have a better chance of getting a bike that has been put together correctly and solidly. They might also have some of the hybrid bikes that are fairly rugged and faster than a full on mountain bike.
      Bike shops are the best bet, they will offer the best service and parts and may even have a selection of used bikes that have been tuned up.

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  9. Reply

    Are GMC And Mongoose Acceptable Mountain Bikes? I’m looking to buy a couple of inexpensive but durable mountain bikes. I read the answers about what people recommend, but in my price range ($300) I only seem to find GMC and Mongoose bikes, with disk brakes and in some cases dual suspension. Are these good enough for moderate trail riding?

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    1. Reply

      I think that you may be barking up the wrong tree because it is impossible to buy a mountain bike for $300. Let me explain (this is kind of long).

      There are 3 kinds of bikes normally called mountain bikes-

      “Fat Tire Bikes” or FTBs are typically those which you’ll find in discount stores or other retailers. They almost always look like mountain bikes with lots of bells and whistles, but they are intended for on road and on light trails only. This is usually disclosed by a sticker on the bike or in the owners manual. These usually sell for between $0 and $300.

      “All Terrain bikes” or ATB’s are a good choice for onroad, offroad, and more technical terrain (rocks and ruts). They are usually well built, as you go up in price they get better. If your budget is $300 don’t buy a $200 bike as $300 is about the entry point for a decent bike. ATBs are priced between $200 and $700.

      “Mountain Bikes” or MTBs are just that… put them in your car, take them to a mountain, ride them, and when you’re done put them back in your car and drive them home. They should NOT be used on the road. These tend to be very solidly built and have features that make that type of riding safer and more enjoyable. Mountain bikes START at about $500 and go up from there.

      You should avoid disc brakes on an entry level ATB or MTB unless you are prepared for a high maintenance interval. Instead, choose a bike in the same price range with “linear pull” or V brakes. There is little need for discs unless you race or play in the mud.

      Also avoid full suspension (FS) unless you plan to spend at least $800. Keep in mind that suspension on a bike is for the same reason as on a car… not for comfort, but to keep the wheels on the ground for better handling. Every time you pedal a FS bike some of the energy you expend is eaten up in the suspension rather than going to the rear wheel. Instead, get a bike with front suspension and a rigid frame… you’ll be miles ahead.

      Also consider the complexity of disc brakes and FS. Exactly what kind of quality might you expect of these items on a $300 bike especially when it probably costs $300 just to replace 1 shock on a car?

      If you will indulge me just a little more…

      In the 1890s when the “ordinary” bike (bike with both wheels the same size) was introduced the average cost of a bike was $94.00 which translated to 6 MONTHS pay. Now, I don’t suggest that anyone spend 6 months salary on a bike, but perhaps a week or 2 would be a better budget, don’t you think?

      Anyway, forget the GMC. If the Mongoose is a MongoosePRO you’ll do OK but do NOT choose one that is branded Mongoose (without the “Pro”).

      Feel free to email me if you have any questions on other brands or sizing a bike, etc.

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