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  1. #1
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    Feb 2007
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    Bike for the Wife's return to light trail riding

    The wife took a significant post kid riding hiatus, even moreso than me. She has an obsolete Cannondale hardtail from the early mid 2000s with a crappy Manitou fork that was used mostly for street riding with narrow slicks the past years. The other day, we put the WTB knobbys back on and rode some fun local singletrack with the 4 yo on the Shotgun seat with me. We all had a blast and with the 9 yo wanting to ride more, she plans on getting out there a lot more.

    The question is what bike for our local trails. Would prefer used to get more bike for the money. Shes not going to use this enough to justify spending a decent amount of $$$, but definitely could use an upgrade from what shes on now. Given the cost constraints, thinking a hardtail with higher volume tires is probably the only way to go, but also think as someone who would like the bike to be more comfortable and easier to ride through our local roots and rocks, a short travel FS wouldn't be the worst thing.

    Basically, what's the sweet spot to get something that's capable enough to make light trail / casual XC riding fun without a big financial commitment for something that may only get used a few times a month?

  2. #2
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    Jan 2017
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    Ibis Ripley AF's are on sale for less than $3k brand new. Not sure what the budget is, but that seems like it would be an ideal bike.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
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    Down In A Hole, Up in the Sky
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    It appears the used market is coming back down to earth, but that isn’t without its own pitfalls and possible mistakes.
    Forum Cross Pollinator, gratuitously strident

  4. #4
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    What about the 9 year old? We’ll be moving on from an xs pivot 5.5 pretty soon…..


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    I rip the groomed on tele gear

  5. #5
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    Feb 2007
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    [QUOTE=thejongiest;6669631]Ibis Ripley AF's are on sale for less than $3k brand new. Not sure what the budget is, but that seems like it would be an ideal bike.[/QUOTE

    Dammit... Just deleted my reply.

    The AF is a screaming deal, I just ordered myself a SLX build . She doesn't want to spend even that much on this since it's unclear how much use it will actually get. That's why I think I'm probably stuck with a hardtail, which isn't the worst thing since I don't see her doing much heavy tech, but I want to make this as fun and comfortable for her to ride so she wants to do it more . But yes ,the used market can be a pain in the ass.

  6. #6
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    Feb 2007
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    Quote Originally Posted by detrusor View Post
    What about the 9 year old? We’ll be moving on from an xs pivot 5.5 pretty soon…..


    Sent from my iPhone using TGR Forums
    He just turned 9 and got a Cannondale Cujo 24+ for his bday. He's just getting started so we will see where this goes before upgrading

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
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    Hell Track
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    Is she going to be putting the shotgun seat on whatever bike she gets? I find that my guys enjoy that experience a lot more of I don't put the seat on my hardtail. They're sitting down the whole time, so it makes for a bumpy ride for them.

  8. #8
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    Jan 2005
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    Quote Originally Posted by Duffman View Post
    I think I'm probably stuck with a hardtail, which isn't the worst thing since I don't see her doing much heavy tech
    Nothing wrong with a hardtail. I got my wife a RSD Middle Child as a post kid present. There are people riding nearly any trail on Earth with modern enduro hard tails. One less shock to maintain. My wife's has 27.5 2.8 tires to give it a bit more plush and traction confidence. I'll probably get a bit smaller tire when it's time to replace. I got the steel frame, which is close to $3k. You could opt for aluminum to save a bit of money and weight.

  9. #9
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    Feb 2007
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    Quote Originally Posted by toast2266 View Post
    Is she going to be putting the shotgun seat on whatever bike she gets? I find that my guys enjoy that experience a lot more of I don't put the seat on my hardtail. They're sitting down the whole time, so it makes for a bumpy ride for them.
    No I'm the shotgun rider. She's not confident enough to ride trails with the kiddo. I love the seat and my daughter loves it, but it's not the fastest to take on and off, so my plan for now is to keep it on my old bike for casual riding with the kid and use the Ripley for real riding. I am aware this plan will probably last about 30 seconds after I ride the Ripley and realize how much better it is, but that's the idea for now .


    I guess the gist of my question is if going used to keep at a limited budget, how far back for either a full squish or HT makes sense before everything is so dated that it's just a waste of money?

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Duffman View Post
    I guess the gist of my question is if going used to keep at a limited budget, how far back for either a full squish or HT makes sense before everything is so dated that it's just a waste of money?
    She squeezed a bunch of kids out of her vagina. Pony up for a new (or at least slightly used) bike. You can find decent hard tails in the 2k -3k range. It will be fun around town and gravel roads with the kids too. Maybe some bike packing someday.

  11. #11
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    Feb 2007
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    Quote Originally Posted by altasnob View Post
    She squeezed a bunch of kids out of her vagina. Pony up for a new (or at least slightly used) bike. You can find decent hard tails in the 2k -3k range. It will be fun around town and gravel roads with the kids too. Maybe some bike packing someday.
    Ha. Agree 100%. She's the one who will flip over going big on this. I like buying gear, that's what I'm here for. Got to thread the needle about a bike she would be excited for and not pissed about the outlay.

    Love the bikepacking idea though.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
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    Front Range, CO
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    I'm a big fan of hardtails with plus sized tires for value. My kids rocked a RM Growler for a few years before graduating up to full suspension. We originally bought it thinking my wife could use it as a backup (seemed like a lot of money for an 11 year old at the time). That being said, she had a hard time adjusting to a hardtail after being on full sus for many years. It felt "bouncy" to her and she never got comfortable on it. If you go this route, may be worth trying to do a demo first.

    FWIW - It seems like every day I'm seeing bikes go on sale (Ibis, Evil, SC, Yeti, etc). It will only get better as the season comes to a close.

  13. #13
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    Sep 2011
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    Front Range, CO
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    234
    You're gonna love the Ripley! I just got my daughter the SLX AF with the sale and it's a really fun bike!

    [QUOTE=Duffman;6669718]
    Quote Originally Posted by thejongiest View Post
    Ibis Ripley AF's are on sale for less than $3k brand new. Not sure what the budget is, but that seems like it would be an ideal bike.[/QUOTE

    Dammit... Just deleted my reply.

    The AF is a screaming deal, I just ordered myself a SLX build . She doesn't want to spend even that much on this since it's unclear how much use it will actually get. That's why I think I'm probably stuck with a hardtail, which isn't the worst thing since I don't see her doing much heavy tech, but I want to make this as fun and comfortable for her to ride so she wants to do it more . But yes ,the used market can be a pain in the ass.

  14. #14
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    Feb 2007
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    Quote Originally Posted by slcdawg View Post
    I'm a big fan of hardtails with plus sized tires for value. My kids rocked a RM Growler for a few years before graduating up to full suspension. We originally bought it thinking my wife could use it as a backup (seemed like a lot of money for an 11 year old at the time). That being said, she had a hard time adjusting to a hardtail after being on full sus for many years. It felt "bouncy" to her and she never got comfortable on it. If you go this route, may be worth trying to do a demo first.

    FWIW - It seems like every day I'm seeing bikes go on sale (Ibis, Evil, SC, Yeti, etc). It will only get better as the season comes to a close.
    Yeah it looks like the supply chains unscrewing themselves coupled with the sheer amount of bikes sold last couple years may lead to a boomerang effect this off season, probably a smart move to wait and see what shakes out

  15. #15
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    Sep 2007
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    tetons
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    I love my hardtail 29’er so I wouldn’t dismiss that for her.
    Go bigger tires to make up for the lack of suspension and definitely add a dropper post as a lot of my lady friends like to jack their seat posts so high and then don’t realize why they suck on the downhills.
    I have the ibis DV9 which they no longer manufacture but I bet she would be psyched with a hardtail 29’er given the above improvements. And it will be nice and light so she will feel like a champion on the uphill too
    skid luxury

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by babybear View Post
    I love my hardtail 29’er so I wouldn’t dismiss that for her.
    Go bigger tires to make up for the lack of suspension and definitely add a dropper post as a lot of my lady friends like to jack their seat posts so high and then don’t realize why they suck on the downhills.
    I have the ibis DV9 which they no longer manufacture but I bet she would be psyched with a hardtail 29’er given the above improvements. And it will be nice and light so she will feel like a champion on the uphill too
    Yeah as much as the rear squish would make some things easier on the rougher trails local to me , the weight penalty at the lower end may make things worse. What tire size are you running?

  17. #17
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    Sep 2007
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    tetons
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    Bike for the Wife's return to light trail riding

    I was running 2.5 hans damphs but switched to 2.2’s this spring bc I was doing more gravel riding but I haven’t switched back. or rather I haven’t asked my husband to switch them back
    The 2.2’s actually work fine for the trails that I frequent when I choose that bike- lunch loop type trails where I can also ride there without driving there.
    But running the 2.5’s with dropper definitely made it a bike I would reach for a lot.
    If your wife is like any of my lady bike friends, they sometimes run low on energy with all of their responsibilities so having a simpler bike also made it easier for them to just “get out” and ride.
    skid luxury

  18. #18
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    Feb 2007
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    Without starting a holy war here, any thoughts on 27.5+ (2.6 or so I guess, nothing crazy ) vs 29 on a hardtail for a just under 5'5" woman?

  19. #19
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    Sent from my iPhone using TGR Forums
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  20. #20
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    Aug 2007
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    Bottom feeding
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    Bike for the Wife's return to light trail riding

    My 5’6” wife rides a 27.5” very light hard tail. It fits her perfect, but so do a lot of 29” bikes. She rides only XC trails, though. 2 of her friends have 27.5 plus and “love” them. Baby bear prolly has the right idea for your situation.
    Well maybe I'm the faggot America
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