Is it biting me? - Page 2





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  1. #21
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
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    Durbanville, CPT
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    43
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    125

    Default Re: Is it biting me?

    Quote Originally Posted by Musashi View Post
    Some good advice already. In my view, if you think spinning is fun, you'll love mountain biking. Honestly I can ride for hours outdoors but hate indoor training (except for Zwift, but that's something different).

    For a beginner, I'd suggest a hard tail (no rear suspension) as you won't be doing long distances or really technical downhill for some time.
    The brands you see around South Africa are generally well supported, Giant, Spesialized, Scott, Merida, you can't really go wrong. But rather stay away from the Makro R2000 jobbies - you'll be replacing them very soon.
    If you're looking second hand, take someone along who knows what to look for. Yes, mountain bike brake pads can cost as much as motorbike brake pads. A drive train replacement can set you back R3k easy. Find out when last the fork and bearings (head set, wheels, bottom bracket) was serviced. Take it for a quick spin and check that the brakes work and the gears shift easy.
    If you're looking new, 2018 models should go at a discount as everyone is stocking 2019 models.
    You don't need top of the range components. Almost anything Shimano/ Sram would be fine.
    Remember to budget for at least a helmet, shorts/bib and gloves. If you can get used to them, clipless shoes and pedals are great. If you're buying new, try to negotiate a discount at the bike shop.
    Get a bike set-up done. The bike shop should be able to assist.
    Get the tubeless set up done. Tubes are old tech.
    Don't be afraid to ask questions, here or the shop or anywhere. People are eager to help.

    I agree with Musashi.
    I would however recommend to test a couple of bikes between 27.5" and 29" with combinations of Hardtail vs full suspension before you decide to buy. If you are not going to ride it or use it at least weekly then a hardtail may be the one for you. It is less maintenance and cheaper to maintain. Also, hardtail bike will teach you proper riding technique such as being out of the saddle at the right times, correct line choices on the trails. With full suspension bikes, you just ride over almost everything and the bike does everything for you, a hardtail not so much. Once the bug bites you may end up upgrading to a full suspension bike and then your technique and skills will be much better and you will ride with a lot more confidence.

    As for the wheel size, try to understand what your riding style is/will be. Will you be doing relaxed long distance riding with the odd trail thrown into the mix or will you be doing the more adventurous type of riding where you and your bike is more airborne than in contact with terra firma? If the long distance option is more your kind of story, then 29r will be the best option. It rolls/keeps momentum and maintains speed better than a 27.5" due to the bigger wheel diameter. 27.5B will be better suited to the more adventurous style of riding for the general public due to it being easier to control and turn the wheels while on the trails.

    It all depends on what your budget is, but you can get something relatively descent for around R10-R12K new.
    Brands that come to mind are Titan, Merida, Silverback, Scott and Giant. I prefer Giant but that is a very biased opinion due to the 18 years I have been cycling. Make sure that the bike's wheels have been converted to tubeless (as Mashushi said). So much less to worry about. I do carry a spare tube with me for Justin Case.

    Items I would prioritize as part of the bike purchase in order:
    1. helmet. under no circumstances swing the leg over the seat without the lid on. It will save your life.
    2. proper cycling shorts. (Indola, First Ascent etc are good to start off with) Your rear end and best buddy will thank you later :-)
    3. Bum Cream. It may sound weird to rub stuff on your rear before you venture outside, but trust me, the discomfort from saddle sores due to chaffing is enough to permanently put anyone off cycling.
    4. Gloves
    5. Bike Setup: They configure the bike according to your body geometry to reduce the impact on your joints. Having a bike setup incorrectly could cause you some really bad pain (e.g medial nerve in your hands pinched due to to much pressure on the palms, Knee issues and ITB due to saddle to low/high or to far back/forward). Just to name a few.
    6. Hydration backpack. Funnily enough, this have saved me from a couple of pasty back/spinal injuries. I even do road cycling with the "Camelback" and that is a BIG no-no from the purists out there. I even did a couple of Double Centuries with the backpack.

    Only once you are confident/comfortable on the bike and have done a few rides, then only will I go out and get a set of clipless pedals and shoes. It will save on the initial expenses and also allow you to get used to the bike without the added pressure of having to deal with your feet connected to the bike. It breeds confidence! Oh, and once they are fitted, go ride on a big rugby field for the first time, because, when you fall due to the shoes and pedals being connected (and you will) the landing will be slightly softer, you are not on the trails and there is no traffic around you.

    2016 Ford Ranger XL DC 4x4
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  2. #22
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
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    Loevenstein, Bellville
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    39
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    2,345

    Default Re: Is it biting me?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jacques_Nel View Post
    Oh, and once they are fitted, go ride on a big rugby field for the first time, because, when you fall due to the shoes and pedals being connected (and you will) the landing will be slightly softer, you are not on the trails and there is no traffic around you.

    Make sure someone is filming you and drops the f-bomb. The video may just go viral.
    Niel
    2012 BMW F800GS
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  3. #23
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Pretoria
    Posts
    593

    Default Re: Is it biting me?

    thank you all, valuable input. I will take it all in to consideration.

    Can't wait to fall ...... sorry I mean ride.

    Lastly, which shop in and around pretoria can i visit where a newbie won't be ripped to pieces.

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Feb 2018
    Location
    Pretoria
    Posts
    257

    Default Re: Is it biting me?

    I would go second hand as a start, there are more than enough of them out there for a very good reason, people upgrade often. You will too if the bug bites properly but all you need to get going is a large 29er hardtail, we are the same height and it is a lot easier to adjust a large frame to your exact body dimensions, you might find a limit on a medium frame, as I have. By the way there can be a huge difference between what is a medium or large between manufacturers but you can google their websites to get an idea of the dimensions. This wheel size thing as been debated ad nauseum but the reality is that the majority of wheel sizes on the trails are 29 inch and as such you will find an abundance of spares available, while 27.5 are around you will find 26 inch tyres hard to come by.

    Once you get your bike you need to simply go out and ride so that you can get used to it. As soon as you are riding 20kms comfortably on the road (preferably gravel) it is time to try some trails. I see you are in Pretoria and we have some great MTB parks, I would recommend Rosemary Hill and Big Red Barn for starters and stick to the green route first. Once you get comfortable with that you can test yourself on the blue, then red and perhaps black. I recommend a skills course before you go red or black though, these trails require skills that you may or maynot have so it's best to be sure.

    After a year of riding you will know what type of riding you enjoy and that's when you can decided on what type of bike to buy. To illustrate the options if you find the technical trails not too your liking you won't need a long travel bike. Travel can vary from 80 -200+mm and so does the weight increase with the extra travel. You might prefer the shorter distances which makes a 100mm hardtail the perfect bike, as soon as you up the distances above 45km or 3 hours of riding you will be looking for a bit more comfort and a dual suspension becomes a better option. By the way the term soft tail is a misnomer on a MTB it's dual suspension, a soft tail is an adapted seat configuration designed for riding the cobbles often found in the classics in Europe. It also a term for the girl with flexible morals!

    You might find that you enjoy the technical riding which means that you want as much travel as you can get, so if you're like me and enjoy Enduro riding,which is very technical with some jumps thrown into the mix, you need at least a 130mm dual suspension you could go for more but that would too much weight for the longer rides, this is the constant trade off. If you really like the downhill stuff you have shifted into the 200+ travel range and you need a spedific bike configuration and geometry, you would also need a new vocabulary with words like gnarly, shred, airtime, dialled, shuttle etc, you will also never wear lycra again and you might end up with a tattoo! You have been warned, this is the dark side.

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Pretoria
    Age
    37
    Posts
    133

    Default Re: Is it biting me?

    Where in Pretoria do you stay? Lynnwood Cyclery has a very active club with rides every Saturday catering from beginners to racers. They also have night rides on Wednesdays which is a lot of fun. Pretoria East is MTB heaven with Rosemary Hill, Cowhouse and all the gravel roads.
    2008 Mitsubishi Triton 2.5 4x4 SS

  6. #26
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Maputo, Mozambique
    Age
    39
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: Is it biting me?

    Quote Originally Posted by Morne - Skip View Post
    thank you all, valuable input. I will take it all in to consideration.

    Can't wait to fall ...... sorry I mean ride.

    Lastly, which shop in and around pretoria can i visit where a newbie won't be ripped to pieces.
    Welcome to the world of fun and sweat.

    Look for https://momsenbikes.com/ Made in South Africa, full customer service by the owner himself. I cycled some 10 000km last year on a Momsen Vipa and on a Momsen R355 (named after the longest gravel road in SA) and I can't stop saying great things about the brand. Awesome bikes.

    I also did 3 500km spinning last year. This year still counting but already at 650km.

    The advice I give all newbies: 29r wheels, don't go for the cheapies, get hydraulic brakes. Invest in a good helmet and good shorts/bib with padding.

    You aren't a 20 year old with time to go through the upgrades, buy an intermediate bike (Like a Momsen Vipa Race One). Light, durable and with all the niceties you NEED (then you'll want a lot more but that's life).

    I have good friends who lead groups of newbies around pretoria.

    Safe riding, have fun, remember to smile while you sweat and that the next climb will always be better than the current one.

  7. #27
    Join Date
    May 2017
    Location
    Johannesburg
    Posts
    11

    Default Re: Is it biting me?

    Quote Originally Posted by Morne - Skip View Post
    Yes I definitely will go the MTB route.

    36, 1.8m, 89kg, Pretoria
    Plenty great roads to still ride around Pta - Rooiwal (Petronella) for example they hold regular fun/club rides/races there with different distances. Used to ride them on a handcycle until I stopped cycling due to shoulder wear and tear.
    2017 Jimny
    2014 Hajadu 800 (bad bad choice - sold)
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    Dirtbikes - too many to list

  8. #28
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Harties Boet
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    36
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    1,482

    Default Re: Is it biting me?

    Right, my advice to all people starting out is to go used, and spend as much as you possibly can (without getting ripped off). I've seen it happen time and time again that a guy buys himself a cheapy (cos a bicycle is a bicycle right?), does the first ride and the bike ruins the entire experience - slipping/unresponsive gears, junk brakes, junk tyres, and a heavy pig of a thing going uphill.

    If you can, I recommend a carbon fibre, hardtail 29 inch. I got my first carbon fibre bike about two years ago (at a steal second hand) and just love the thing. Im still amazed at what a difference a light bike makes to the overall ride, and ive been actively riding bikes since a could walk.

    My next recommendation takes ALOT of flack from everyone, but, ditch the idea of cleats, get platform pedals and just enjoy the ride. You're not doing any time trials, so why the rush? Again, I'd like to think that Im an experienced rider, but, nothing ruined my rides more that when I tried cleats on the mountain bike. Sure, on the road bike theyre fine, but I hated them on the MTB, as soon as I decided to not care what the rest of the riding fraternity thought of me, and put my platform pedals back on, Ive been a very happy chap. It is just so unnecessary to be falling on the trails cos you didn't get your foot out in time.
    2004 Nissan Patrol 4.8
    1999 Nissan Patrol 4.2D

  9. #29
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Pretoria
    Posts
    593

    Default Re: Is it biting me?

    Quote Originally Posted by Graham View Post
    Right, my advice to all people starting out is to go used, and spend as much as you possibly can (without getting ripped off). I've seen it happen time and time again that a guy buys himself a cheapy (cos a bicycle is a bicycle right?), does the first ride and the bike ruins the entire experience - slipping/unresponsive gears, junk brakes, junk tyres, and a heavy pig of a thing going uphill.

    If you can, I recommend a carbon fibre, hardtail 29 inch. I got my first carbon fibre bike about two years ago (at a steal second hand) and just love the thing. Im still amazed at what a difference a light bike makes to the overall ride, and ive been actively riding bikes since a could walk.

    My next recommendation takes ALOT of flack from everyone, but, ditch the idea of cleats, get platform pedals and just enjoy the ride. You're not doing any time trials, so why the rush? Again, I'd like to think that Im an experienced rider, but, nothing ruined my rides more that when I tried cleats on the mountain bike. Sure, on the road bike theyre fine, but I hated them on the MTB, as soon as I decided to not care what the rest of the riding fraternity thought of me, and put my platform pedals back on, Ive been a very happy chap. It is just so unnecessary to be falling on the trails cos you didn't get your foot out in time.
    I think I might go that route too.

  10. #30
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    Aug 2012
    Location
    Pretoria
    Posts
    593

    Default Re: Is it biting me?


  11. #31
    Join Date
    Feb 2018
    Location
    Pretoria
    Posts
    257

    Default Re: Is it biting me?

    Quote Originally Posted by Morne - Skip View Post
    This is a mixed bag, frame is fine. The XC 30 fork could be a coilspring loaded shock as opposed to air and very entry level, it will underperform when you get going, it did come out as a "solo air" in later versions but check this out. To be clear a coil spring shock will bottom out on big drops which is not important to start with but as your confidence grows you'll want the extra protection that an airsprung shock gives you. The wheels are over the top for this level of bike and will mean nothing to you as a beginner but it looks like it was an upgrade. There is a mixture of SLX and XT components which is fine (XT being a class above SLX). Brakes are Shimano which are bulletproof. The Carbon handlebar points to another upgrade and I believe you are paying for upgrades that are unimportant to you at this stage and this is adding about R2k to the price. Personally I would walk away from the bike if the fork is coilsprung a new fork is around R4.5k and it does make a difference to the quality of the ride.

  12. #32
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    Aug 2012
    Location
    Pretoria
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    593

    Default Re: Is it biting me?

    Quote Originally Posted by River Rat View Post
    This is a mixed bag, frame is fine. The XC 30 fork could be a coilspring loaded shock as opposed to air and very entry level, it will underperform when you get going, it did come out as a "solo air" in later versions but check this out. To be clear a coil spring shock will bottom out on big drops which is not important to start with but as your confidence grows you'll want the extra protection that an airsprung shock gives you. The wheels are over the top for this level of bike and will mean nothing to you as a beginner but it looks like it was an upgrade. There is a mixture of SLX and XT components which is fine (XT being a class above SLX). Brakes are Shimano which are bulletproof. The Carbon handlebar points to another upgrade and I believe you are paying for upgrades that are unimportant to you at this stage and this is adding about R2k to the price. Personally I would walk away from the bike if the fork is coilsprung a new fork is around R4.5k and it does make a difference to the quality of the ride.
    thanks, I will ask the same questions

  13. #33
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Location
    Pretoria
    Age
    55
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    7

    Default Re: Is it biting me?

    If you are interested in something older but cheaper, I am thinking of departing of my Trek 4500, not in use for the last 5 to 6 years.
    I had some nice rides with it as a beginner.

  14. #34
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Pretoria
    Posts
    593

    Default Re: Is it biting me?

    Quote Originally Posted by River Rat View Post
    This is a mixed bag, frame is fine. The XC 30 fork could be a coilspring loaded shock as opposed to air and very entry level, it will underperform when you get going, it did come out as a "solo air" in later versions but check this out. To be clear a coil spring shock will bottom out on big drops which is not important to start with but as your confidence grows you'll want the extra protection that an airsprung shock gives you. The wheels are over the top for this level of bike and will mean nothing to you as a beginner but it looks like it was an upgrade. There is a mixture of SLX and XT components which is fine (XT being a class above SLX). Brakes are Shimano which are bulletproof. The Carbon handlebar points to another upgrade and I believe you are paying for upgrades that are unimportant to you at this stage and this is adding about R2k to the price. Personally I would walk away from the bike if the fork is coilsprung a new fork is around R4.5k and it does make a difference to the quality of the ride.
    Fork is airsprung

  15. #35
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Pretoria
    Age
    36
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    126

    Default Re: Is it biting me?

    Hi Also have a look at Solomons cycles in Lynnwood road

    I know they have spacial son Merida Bikes at the moment. its always a good place to start.

    I would stay with 29er wheel size, and go for tubeless from the gun.

    Great place to start riding are Buffelsdrift Mountain bike park

    Smashing

  16. #36
    Join Date
    Feb 2018
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    Pretoria
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    257

    Default Re: Is it biting me?

    Quote Originally Posted by Morne - Skip View Post
    Fork is airsprung
    Great ! It looks like you are now negotiating price if the bike has no obvious flaws.

  17. #37
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  18. #38
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    Aug 2012
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    Pretoria
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    Default Re: Is it biting me?

    I see it's a 2013 ... would buying a bike that old not hit me in the nuts pretty soon? I don't know bicycles, so i don't know anything about their lifespan, parts durability etc

  19. #39
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    Feb 2018
    Location
    Pretoria
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    Default Re: Is it biting me?

    Quote Originally Posted by Morne - Skip View Post
    I see it's a 2013 ... would buying a bike that old not hit me in the nuts pretty soon? I don't know bicycles, so i don't know anything about their lifespan, parts durability etc
    As long as the frame has no cracks in it is really no risk. The fork is arguably your biggest risk but as long as it has been serviced regularly you should be okay. Scuff marks on the stanchions are a sure sign of abuse and there's no repair option. Every other part of the bike's components are considered a consumable. The is includes brakes, cassettes, chainrings, chains, derailleurs etc these are replaced a number of times before the frame is done for. So you will have to consider these costs and I must tell my bike costs more to service per km than my car

  20. #40
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    Aug 2012
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    Pretoria
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    Default Re: Is it biting me?

    Quote Originally Posted by River Rat View Post
    As long as the frame has no cracks in it is really no risk. The fork is arguably your biggest risk but as long as it has been serviced regularly you should be okay. Scuff marks on the stanchions are a sure sign of abuse and there's no repair option. Every other part of the bike's components are considered a consumable. The is includes brakes, cassettes, chainrings, chains, derailleurs etc these are replaced a number of times before the frame is done for. So you will have to consider these costs and I must tell my bike costs more to service per km than my car
    I've heard the upkeep is expensive, hence I think i would rather buy a bit newer from the start then too old and have a moneypit right from the get go

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