RiderForums.com - Kawasaki Motorcycle Forum banner

1 - 20 of 21 Posts

·
Silver Member
Joined
·
881 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I read MedZR7Treker got your nic from being a MTB buff. You or the others might be able to help me here.

I am an average road cyclist, and now summer is here I ride the 20km to work a few times a week, but am keen to have a go at MTB.

Can someone tell the the pros/cons of dual suspension over a rigid rear end? Since I am gonna do this on a budget what is the main thing to look for in a bike. What is a must, what can I skimp on ??

Also, I am used to clipless pedals on the racer, are these a good move on MTB?

Thanks

:)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
109 Posts
I can only really comment on the clips. The general rule is that clips are good, especially if you're going to be doing trail riding or things like that. When you're bouncing over rough terrain, they really help to keep the balls of your feet on the pedals, where otherwise the vibrations might cause your feet to slide off them.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
706 Posts
M. Biking

Best Regards Team:

TITOMIKE: I'm also into mountain biking but had found more "pleasure" riding the ZR-7.

Check the bike reviews at this site:

http://www.mtbr.com/

I'll suggest go all the way with full suspension..You will not regreat it..Is worth the higher price compared with a "hard tail"

The first thing I looked for was the quality of the frame 'cause I'm on the heavy side 210lbs. Also the reputation of the bike manufacturer honoring the warranty in case you brake the frame.
but that's difficult to happened unles you are a lot into "downhill" or stuff like that.


Ride Safe..!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
197 Posts
ooh ooh ooh

i disagree with a couple of statements:

"The general rule is that clips are good, especially if you're going to be doing trail riding or things like that."

i have been riding trials for about 3 years and it is a lot easier and safer to do maneuvers like those without clipless pedals. i think the best perk of clippless pedals is the consistent energy transfer (just like on your road bike) and then the fact like TheScamp says about keeping your feet in over the rough terrain.

i also disagree with going with a full suspension. i have had three in the past few years (i but them used so i can experiment). the best one i had was a klein mantra. even though the FS Bikes are coming doen in weight, you still give up a little for them. i also like the feel if a hardtail because you can tell that most of the power through the pedals is getting to the dirt.
i guess it really depends on what you feel the best on. try some friends bikes if you can.

let us know what you get. i always love to hear about new bikes!
:)

josh
 

·
The Deer Slayer
Joined
·
7,382 Posts
Hey Titomike. The type of trails you ride determines the suspention level. Suspention tends to rob energy from your stroke. I rode a great trail in Rocky Point. Technical, but not an absolute need for suspention. About 12 or so miles through the Pine Barrens. My son and I had a pair of Ridged Mongoose. Nice bikes, rapid shifters, nice brakes. I put on the Kevlar tires, had a rack on mine. Weight is the thing, as you know, especially when climbing.

If you are Mountain riding, a light, well made suspended bike is the way to go. I used to know all about the different suspentions. The better ones didn't bob up and down when pushed hard, but they can get very expensive. Some as much as a new ZR-7 ! If its a less rough, trail, skip the suspention, save weight and money.

Hey, I miss the rode biking too. Used to ride to work on good summer days, twenty miles each way. Man was I healthy then ! My Trek road bike had clipless, only way to go on the road. My best ever time was on a return trip home from work. Twenty miles in one hour flat. No, I'm not lance Armstrong, but wow, was I pumped up that day. I felt like I was in the tour de france. Ha.

The mountain bike had clips. I just couldn't see myself un-clipping in an emergecy. And, yes, bikeing is a sport because you get bloody...Please refer to Olympic skating thread. You can't have fun mountain bikeing unless you push it to the point where you get to play superman off the front bars. Great fun, just have first aid, and don't break bones.

Always wear a helmet !!!

We converted the mountain bikes to road bikes with these trick Kevlar road tires. They looked like police bikes. We road them in the Bike New York two years in a row. 50 miles, all 5 burrows, over the Varrizano bridge, everything. What a great group ride. But, the last time, just way too many people, thousands and thousands. Man, when there was a crash, it was ugly. We were ok though. A freind who we were with survived the whole ride, right up to the Staten Island ferry terminal that sailed you back to the begining. He comes flying up to the gate, where you stop for the last time, swings his leg over to dismount while rolling, and wipes out. Blamo! And he's a big fella. It hurt just to see it. He was ok too, though, a little banged up, but ok.

Well, I've got to pull them out of the basement this spring, and get back on. I really loved biking. It became a bit of an obsession, like the motorcycle is now. Look for every excuse to ride it. Then the wife crys neglect. Ha, you know. They don't complain when your in tip top shape at bedtime, nudge nudge, wink wink, know what I mean know what I mean.

Diversion. Sorry. So, where will you be biking ?What type of road bike do you have, and what type of mountain bikes are you looking at ? Been a couple of years, but "bicycling" magazine was my best info source. Shaved your legs yet, that was an experience, boy. People think your nuts when your a bicyclist. That's the best part. Beware the snobby riders, though. They're just better than everyone else, ha ha.

Tony.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,274 Posts
i used to work in a mountain bike shop near the rocky point trail. if you're going to be using the bike for commuting on the road i'd stay away from full suspension. i generally recommend against it unless you need it. you only "need" suspension for things like rough downhills or very rough trails where the combination of speed and surface tend to have the tires more in the air than on the ground. here suspension keeps the tires on the ground more giving you better control. some people just can't handle rough surfaces but still want to mountian bike. i've had older folks and people with injuries buy full suspension bikes though they weren't riding in terribly harsh environments, just need the comfort so they could ride as much as they wanted.

there's an effect called "pogo-ing". your body is not a constant power source like a motorcycle engine, you pedal in spurts. it's hard to isolate that energy so the bike goes up and down a bit every time you push on one of the pedals. this is the enegy loss mentioned above. you'll notice this more on the street. motorcycles only deal with this when there's a change in acceleration, braking or getting on the throttle. this is why you generally don't want to switch from one to the other mid corner, it unsettels the chasis. imagine how poorly your bike would handle if you rocked the throttle on and off all day.

now here's my OPINION and others may disagree. full suspension is a waste for most riders. partly for the reasons mentioned above and partlyly for what i'll say now. for a given price point the money spent on suspension gets sucked out from somewhere else, usually frame and components. this means a suspension bike will generally be of lower quality than a non suspension bike at the same price. whe i was working in the shop (7 years ago) any full suspension bike under $500-600 was crap. it either had really crappy components or the design of the rear suspension was terrible and gave a bad ride or it was as heavy as a load of bricks. somtimes a combination of all three. conversely, some rigid bikes at $300 were excellent and even some bikes near $200 were not bad depending on brand. i generallly recommend spending at least $300-350 on a rigid or front suspension bike if you plan to use it regularly. this gets you components that should work acceptably well and last a respectable time. if this sounds like a lot keep in mind that i am a cheap ******* :) i never like to spend more than i have to to get the job done. spending any less than that is foolish since you'll be disappointed. you'll probably end up buying what you should have in the first place later anyway.

if you'll never go off road and just hang clothes on it while it gathers dust then buy whatever you like but think about it this way: if Huffy made an airplane would you fly in it?

don't buy from a toy store, go to a real bike shop. i wouldn't get my car serviced at the toy store because they don't employ competnet mechanics. same with bikes. i've seen some ok quality low end bikes at costsco and price club but they were ususally poorly assembled and adjusted making them at least unsafe if not unrideable. once you take it in to be serviced at a bike shop so that it works you've lost any savings.

front suspension is different. the technology is much simpler to deal with and there are fewer problems. pogo-ing on the road can be minimized by adjusting the preload to high and having a clean pedal stroke. a good fork will give you more control and a lot les abuse to your wrists letting you ride off road more with less pain. get one that is adjustable and wher you can replace the springs. you may never do either of these things but it assures a level of quality.

some forks have simple springs made of steel or elastomers. others get more fancy and have hydraaulic damping cartridges. i've never seen one of these that didn'tl leak but i think they're better nowadays.

med 7 speaks the truth, get some road tires to commute with. i had some that were great. look for something witha smooth tread that goes to at least 60 pounds of pressure, that way you'll get great efficiency. i rode the 40 mile new york city 5 borrough bike tour with no problems.

bottom line, find a shop that you're comfortable with and buy there. it's just like a motorcycle, you'll be going back for parts and service so you may as well like them.

sorry to be so opinionated, i spent many hours trying to convice people to buy good bikes instead of huffy's and then fixing the huffy's when they broke. again and again and again. you'd be surprised how much money people put into these crappy bikes after they bought them. i also like when people enjoy what they buy, most people enjoy a good rigid bike more than a crappy suspended one. my two wheel opinions cant be all bad, i ride a zr-7 ;)

scott:)
 

·
The Deer Slayer
Joined
·
7,382 Posts
Hey Scott, my X-Long Islander friend. Hey, These are not opinions so much as professional advice. So true that most people don't need suspention. It's been trendy, but not necessary in most cases. Maybe if your a pro racer, or amature at the least. Hey Scott, doesn't that shop support the Rocky Point trail ?

Tony
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,274 Posts
they may, i'm not sure. i haven't been back since i left for california 2 1/2 years ago. the only support you could give a few ago was volunteering for trail work parties.

if you stop by the shop say hi to the owner gary for me. when i left for california i left my bike there in a box. i called him to ship it a few months later when i finally stopped wandering and got a permanent residence.

scott :)
 

·
Silver Member
Joined
·
881 Posts
Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
This is similar to my current road bike. A Kojima with 16sp Shimano Sora running gear. Loaded with twin bidons, ni-cad light, clipless pedals, Nike shoes, Sigma comp etc it weighs in at about 13-14kg (32-35lbs ) and cost about USD600 over the net. Ok balance of weight/price.

I intend to do the Around the Bay in a Day 210km ( 126ml ) ride around Melbourne in Oct. They give you 12hrs to do the ride and included ferry crossing so about an 18km/h average is required.


Kojima KR700 ( mine is red )




The bikes I was looking at for off road were :

1. Shogun WRX (US$350)
24 speed Acera Shimano shifters




2. Schwinn Mesa (US$340)
21 Speed Drive-Train with Shimano Easy Fire Shifters and Shimano Cranks




:)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,274 Posts
funny that you list the shifters. some people select bikes based on that and in my opinion it makes a good deal of sense. you've got to like the interface. they all work reasonably well IF they're adjusted properly and the cables are clean and lubed. the seat is less important since it's much easier to switch. test ride both to make sure you like them. i was the only die hard grip shift fan in my shop. they're a little mor finicky but i like 'em and i also like going against the grain :)

looking at the schwinn i remembered another detail - aluminum frames. generally a bit lighter and WAY more rigid than chromoly/steel. it might be a bit more harsh on your dainty bits that touch the seat on long rides. again, something that costs more so the components go down in the price range.
as to 21 vs. 24 speed - who cares! the top and bottom gears are about the same, it's the difference between gears that is closer on the eight speed rear. don't pick a bike based on this, it doesn't matter too much. on bikes in this price range i'd actually tend towards a 21 speed, it's less delicate and wont' require adjustment as much.

i'm guessing the schwinn has better components. the shimano crank is an important tid-bit. even low end shimano components usually shift far better than their no-name, off brand replacements. who makes the fork for the schwinn?
scott :)
 

·
Silver Member
Joined
·
881 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
test ride both to make sure you like them


Not a chance. The bike shops here won't let you near the doorway with one till they see the green, otherwise they would have to sell it as a used bike. No one would buy a previously test ridden bike.

Now I have another decision. The Apollo Ozark rigid is around US$350 and runs a disc brake front end. This could be the one.



:)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,274 Posts
no test rides?!? wow! we encourage people to take test rides here (just down the block and back) and still sell the bikes as new. guess that's a difference between ausie and US.

disk brake huh? hydraulic or mechanical (cable actuated)? since the disk brake grabs at the hub it put more stress on the spokes than traditional brakes. they can work better when wet but newer standard brakes let you endo just about any bike so it's not really necessary in my opinion. consider whether it's an off brand, if parts are available and whether or not you can retro fit a standard brake later. you want to be able to fix it somehow should you taco the bike against a tree one weekend.

BUT it sounds like you're falling in love with this bike and that can't be denied. just make sure you're satisfied with all the other components and you should be fine.

to tell the truth, most bikes under $600-700 dollars are all built in the same 2 or 3 factories in taiwan regardless of brand. thay all also come with components from the same manufacturer so the differences are really pretty inconsequential. i'm not familiar with this brand but the pic is nice :)

enjoy!

scott :)
 

·
The Deer Slayer
Joined
·
7,382 Posts
Hey, that road bike is candy lightning blue !:laugh:

It's funny, but I researched and shopped all over the place before buying my bicycles. When I saw the first picture of the ZR, it was right then and there I knew I was buying it. Oh yes I researched, just to assure myself of the decision, which I did. And I decided on a dealer based on subjective stuff and locale. The Bicycles, I took alot of time to decide on the right model and brand. Then, I just came across a great deal I couldn't refuse. Looks good, good components, it's what I was looking for, how much ?....Deal.

Hey, disk brakes , very cool. My all time favorite ride was the Trek carbon fiber model that Armstrong rides. But, keep the US Postal decals, thank you. If I had 3 grand, I would have done it. My Trek was a second hand cro-mo 12 speed. Vintage, my friend called it. Worked great, though. 300 bucks.

Hey Scott, haven't been there for a while, but maybe this Spring, I'll say Hey for you.

Tony
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
197 Posts
wow.. no test rides.. that's a bummer. as long as the frame fits correctly you should be all set. you can always upgrade components as they break. i have had my hardtail for about 5 years now, the only original piece on it is the front deraileur.
good luck, let us know what you get.

josh
 

·
Silver Member
Joined
·
881 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
Never updated this. Ended up with a Trek 4300 hardtail.

24 speed, clipless and V brakes. Pretty nice for moderate to rough stuff but I haven't tried any gnarly Pepsi Max stuff yet.

I have to say mtb riding is waaay harder than road riding. I did the 224km Around The Bay on the racer (9.5hrs) and thought I was fit(ish) till I tried mtb. Sheesh its hard work, especially in the hills.

Next project is to make a set of decent night lights out of a pair of small auto fog lamps and a motorcycle battery mounted in the frame between where the bottle cages go.



http://www.trekbikes.com/bikes/2002/mountain/4300.html

:)
 

·
Johnny Blue Lightnin'
Joined
·
12,134 Posts
Nice choice. I am surprised I never replied to this thread before.
Trek makes a good bike and generally use good components. I'll have to go back and look at the link to see exactly what you have.
If you haven't already go with clipless pedals. They will make you a better rider as they will train you to pedal through technical spots where you might otherwise bail out and put a foot down or stop. They will also help you lift the bike over obstacles help you get big air if you like jumps. I'm glad you went with the hardtail &
front suspension fork. They best way to go in my opinion unless
you are into downhill or want to spend big$ on a relatively lightweight full suspension cross country bike. A couple of my friends ride $3000 full suspension bikes, they require more maintenance and have more parts to wear out. They are nice but not woth the exra $ in my book.
Enjoy the Trek. But for long road rides,take your road bike.
 

·
Silver Member
Joined
·
881 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
go with clipless pedals


I have....and I've got the scar(s) to prove it :laugh: :laugh: :laugh:

Actually I am going out today to get a suspension seat post. For what they are worth I could have gone a full suspension bike but I think this will be a better overall set up for me.


:)
 

·
The Deer Slayer
Joined
·
7,382 Posts
I ever tell you guys about the time I stopped at a light on my road bike, and couldn't un-clip ? :laugh: Anyone remember Laugh In ? The old man in a yellow raincoat, ridding the little tricycle, he would just stop pedalling, and fall over sideways. That's what happened to me. I forgot to start the un-clip process before coming to a full stop, and didn't realize. I went to put my foot out onto the ground, fully stopped now, but was still clipped in. Ever hold a cat by the tail ? There I am bucking and squirming...Boom ! over I go.

UH-OH how embarrasing, right next to a line of cars all stopped at the light.

Only make THAT mistake once !!!:D
 

·
Itchy Trigger Finger
Joined
·
1,110 Posts
titomike, every road rider I've known has said exactly the same thing when going off road for the first time:

"That's hard work!" It is the total body workout, especially where I tend to go in the piedmont and foothills of Maryland. You have to hang on to the bars on the flats as you get bounced around by the rocks your riding over. The steeps are steeper and send you anaerobic in no time. And rest downhill? Forget it. Still trying to hang on, while continuously scanning ahead for the next boulder that will send you airborne.
 

·
Johnny Blue Lightnin'
Joined
·
12,134 Posts
Talk about no rest on the downhills. We went to WhiteTail Ski
Resort a couple times and rode the lifts up then rode the trails down.(Not the straight down ones you ski on) It took about 20
minutes to ride down,some sections were real steep,alot were rocky plus there were some little streams to make the rocks wet. I rode my hard tail so I stood on the pedals and used my legs for "suspension". There was a little pedaling involved but not much. The switchbacks were the worst since for a short moment you were headed straight down the mountain. We had only been mountain biking for about 2 years at the time so our skills were still pretty weak. It was fun but after about 5-6 runs down the trails we were done. We became tired and weak which lead to loss of control and crashing. I still have my favorite mountain biking t-shirt that I wore there once. I scrubbed against a tree and the bark ripped the left sleeve off, along with some skin. I had to remove the right sleeve to match. Some of those guys could really rip down those hills. After we rode there the hills on our regular trails that we were afraid of are like cake now. :)
 
1 - 20 of 21 Posts
Top