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meta 5.5.2 the best all mountain/trail bike for the money?

davtheduckdavtheduck Posts: 2
edited May 2008 in MTB buying advice
i am thinking of buying this commencal for around £1600 and was just wandering is there any other all mountain bike i should be considering? the meta 5.5.2 seems like the perfect bike for me on paper but for anyone who has ridden it whats it like going up hill as well as down? is it a bike i can more or less do everything on? XC trails/Moderate downhill?


  • dirtbiker100dirtbiker100 Posts: 1,997
    just got a left over MBR through my dad and they did a trail bike thing and the cannondale prophet 1 got 10/10 (£1700) along with the orange 5 pro (£2200). the meta 5.5.1 got 9/10 (£2200) "its still a great trail bike but the subtle balance has been upset ever so slightly"
  • BlackSpurBlackSpur Posts: 4,228
    Orange 5, Trek Fuel EX and Giant Trance X are all similar bikes woth looking at.
    "Melancholy is incompatible with bicycling." ~James E. Starrs
  • Bud,

    Before you shell out £1600 on the 5.5.2, check the custom build VIP frame from Merlin...Quality! I think they're doing 10% off at the mo too.

    I got one and it's 'wonderfully compliant'! Was down in Limerick last weekend (for the maiden voyage) and did the 17km loop on the sat evening, and the 38km loop on sunday, and it was totally awesome. Brilliant on the ups and super fun and chuckable on the downs. Can't fault it...just tweaked the saddle forward on the rails a bit and the riding position was perfect.

    I upgraded to a PIKE 454 Air U-Turn with Hope Pro 2's to help take the weight of me love handles.

    Check it out...
  • Father FaffFather Faff Posts: 1,176
    I've had a 5.5.1 for a year and it is my preferred bike for most rides, however it is definitely more "All Mountain" than "XC" I would say. It is at it's best on rough and rocky natural Lakeland/Dales/Peaks trails as well as trail centres. It is probably not a good choice if you ride a lot of smoother trails and fireroads or are a racer as that 5.5inch suspension sucks up energy and the bike is not like a racey hardtail or short-travel full susser like the Anthem. The bike climbs reasonably well but is not as fast uphill as a hardtail unless the ground is rougher when the excellent traction of the rear suspension set up will come into it's own. On downhills and technical terrain the bike is awesome and inspires so much confidence that it's positively dangerous. On singletrack the bike is plain fun. On long days in the saddle the bike is really comfortable.

    Best bet is t arrange a test ride and take it out on a favourite trail.
    Commencal Meta 5.5.1
    Scott CR1
  • toastytoasty Posts: 2,598
    I bought it as a general do everything bike, it only came yesterday morning but I had the day off work and went on a big 5 hour epic to bed everything in :) Absolutely overjoyed with all aspects so far, heading up to Dalby this weekend for a proper beating.

    Although I would say it's more on the All Mountain side as above it's still very versatile, it comes in at just over 30lbs which is roughly the same as a lot of full sus aimed at XC/light trails anyway.

    Try haggling with places, I managed to get my 55 XT for £1650 as it was their last. You never know :) Similar to the merlin custom with fox forks (and slightly cheaper rear shock :)).
  • JakeWCJakeWC Posts: 80
    Buy one of the new Marins. ATB are doing an upgraded Rift Zone because they have sold out of the Mount Vision. I rode a Mount Vision the other day and it is totally brilliant. I've never ridden a bike I've enjoyed as much. It has slightly less travel than the other bikes mentioned but the suspension and stiffness of the frame are outstanding. Scoots uphill and is really chuckable on the downs.
  • grantwaygrantway Posts: 1,430
    Toasty the bike is 30.82 lbs a Light XC/Trail bike is around 27-28 lbs your bike is
    more the All mountain 6 inch travel bike weight.

    A lot of weight for a 5 inch travel bike i would say.
  • zero303zero303 Posts: 1,162
    Surely it's a 5.5" bike and at that price no different in weight to the Orange Five S..?
  • Andy BAndy B Posts: 8,115
    140mm (meta) the weight as about right for that sort of bike, at £1650 it's a mid range full susser TBH, it weighs in at around 31lbs

    The Orange 5 (mine's a 130mm) with quite a few upgrades weighs in at just under 29lbs, but It would cost over £2500 to replace it. My 5 started out as a £1800 5'S', which weighed in at 31lbs (with flat pedals)

    So as standard the Meta 552 & Orange 5 weigh roughly the same in standard spec.

    I went for the UK handmade option ;)
  • Father FaffFather Faff Posts: 1,176
    My bog standard Meta 5.5.1 is 28lbs.
    Commencal Meta 5.5.1
    Scott CR1
  • Lads

    Go to your fridge...grab your tub of butter and see if you think it's heavy. No?

    People who ride mountain bikes weigh between 10 and 20 stone generally. I would put a pound of weight on after a breakfast roll, and it'd be gone again after a good ride! At the end of the day, it's the combined weight of you and your bike that we're pushing up those hills.

    28, 29, 30 doesn't really matter. It's all about the handling.

    Rant over! Thanks...
  • NikBNikB Posts: 243
    That's not strictly true. A heavier bike is harder to handle and more fatiguing to ride. Saving weight on wheels and tyres is the best place to save weight if you have the choice. Whether you can really tell the difference between say a 27 or 28lb bike is difficult to say but you certainly could between 25 and 30lb.
  • zero303zero303 Posts: 1,162
    Bike is outside of your body's mass and the weight of it has a huge effect on your body's ability to work.

    You can gain 5lbs in body weight and not even begin to notice it - believe me, I've just lost half a stone and don't notice it when riding.

    If you packed 5lbs onto your bike, by god you'd notice it!!
  • grantwaygrantway Posts: 1,430
    I certainly wouldn't want to push around 31 lbs plus doing XC/ Trails
    for around 3 to 4 hours?

    OK on a downhill bike
  • phatlimeyphatlimey Posts: 4
    Hi Guys,
    Been reading this link with interest, I went up today to Merlin Cycles in Leyland to have a look at their Meta range, guys in the shop where good lads and let me have a peddle around the car park on 1, got to say nice looking bike, light but I seemed to be sitting right up front rather than in it... Seemed that I could pitch myself over the bars easily? (Meta dealer on MBR website said the same thing!) However in fairness I'd need to have proper all day ride to make sure, and maybe a longer stem? I also headed over to leisure lakes and had a shot at the Marin wolf ridge, bit heaver but I felt like I was sitting in it, rather than on top of it. Got me thinking... Meta better looking bike, lighter, but maybe I needed to have a longer stem? Marin, felt good, maybe a bit of a struggle up hills, but solid feel and bombproof! Anybody had the same feeling with a Meta and fixed it?
    I'm really struggling to pick a bike! so you thoughts/ideas would be appreciated!

    Just to confuse me even further, hile I was at leisure lakesI had a go on an Orange 5, which felt good, just a wee bit rich for my wallet at the moment! :(
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 79,667
    have a look at bionicon bikes, my willow weighs in at 29 pounds in stock form and is a mega bit of kit.

    has 120 at the back and between 70 and 140 at the front, handles superbly, is very fast and completely tustworthy on rough stuff.

    i have been very tempted to buy a 6 inch bike but figured that for me, it would be overkill as the willow does it all already.
  • grantway wrote:
    I certainly wouldn't want to push around 31 lbs plus doing XC/ Trails
    for around 3 to 4 hours?

    I've just got back from doing exactly that (30ish lbs- can't tell exactly) over the cotswolds so although I can't say it'd be nice to have a bit lighter bike, as it's my only bike I'd rather do that than not go out! To be fair, I can drop over 2lb off the current wheels and tyres combo soon (almost 100% on the outer edge too) so I'm looking forward to trying the same routes with much faster wheels, but I bet the enjoyment level won't shoot up just because its a bit 'easier'.

  • grantwaygrantway Posts: 1,430
    uk that was a personal comment not an overall view, IE worded as I, as in me.

    But glad you made it back !

    Happy Birthday :lol:
  • Father FaffFather Faff Posts: 1,176
    Nothing wrong with heavier bikes, you just have to be fitter!
    Commencal Meta 5.5.1
    Scott CR1
  • marikamarika Posts: 392
    very strange thing bike weight,some heavy ones ride light,some light ones ride heavy,this is why testing is important to get the right feel,when i've made my bikes lighter it always felt like a vast improvement{but then again they went lighter cause i put better components on}
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