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Enduro or All Mountain buying advise please...

DoughtyDoughty Posts: 22
edited September 2009 in MTB buying advice
Hello All,

The quick bit...
I'm looking for a big travel full suspension bike that can also be ridden up the hills as well as down the hills, from my initial research, a typical 'All Mountain' or 'Enduro' bike.

(more detail)
I just got back into riding after a good break, I dusted off my year 2000 specialized rockhopper FSR comp and went for a blast around Cannock Chase Follow the Dog trail, I loved it!
but the V-brakes and old entry level year 2000 forks and rear shock felt past their best.

I am not an expert rider, I would say about average, but I felt I was getting better even as they day went on.
I really like the feel of riding a plush full suspension bike

the things that annoy me about my current bike...
- low bottom bracket and pedal grinds
- non adjustable seat post, not possible to lower the seat without sawing the post

so I am looking in the price bracket of ~£1500 for a big travel full sus bike that I can ride with my XC friends up the hills, and be condident going down the hills too.

I can't see any spec's that give the bottom bracket heights, am I missing something?

Thanks in advance


  • supersonicsupersonic Posts: 82,708 Lives Here
    How about the new FSR XC comp? 120mm at each end - plenty for FTD.
  • DoughtyDoughty Posts: 22
    thanks for the quick reply, I do intend to do more than follow the dog, trips into wales and places beyond for sure.

    FTD has just made me realise how much I like riding off-road and I want to do a lot more of it, both in freqency and difficulty
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 79,667
    Marin wolfridge. Sorted.
    marin's website has all the spec you'll need

    Remember that those are 2009 prices, the geometry has remained largely unchanged over the last two years, and prices on 2008 ones (if you can find them) have dropped considerably, as will, no doubt, the 2009 ones soon.

    I got my 2009 spec one a few months ago for a shade over £1700

    You seriously need to try one :twisted:
  • OH NO DanOH NO Dan Posts: 186
    I only recently did FTD for the first time and loved it. Only a 45 min drive so ill be going back for sure. Have you been up to the downhill tracks? I went for a nosy...all i can say is i was very out my depth! Huge jumps, massive dropoffs, wow
  • DoughtyDoughty Posts: 22
    I will take a look into the Martin range - thanks, they do look very trick!

    we didn't see the DH stuff, we knew it was going to be too much for our current skills and also our Y2K rides (another friend dusted off his 2000 Marin full sus bike :) )

    some other bikes I have seen in my browsing... your comments would be welcome...

    - GT Force 3.0
    - Giant Reign 2 (though the bottom brack looks low from the pic)
    - Kona Dawg
    - Specialized Pitch/Enduro

    Thanks again for your replies :D
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 79,667
    GT Force, very nice. I'm a big fan of the I-drive system.
    Giant reign, good stuff, but somehow doesn't look burly enough to me.
    kona Dawg. NO. it's a, well... dog. Definitely not one I'd bother with.
    Specialized pitch / Enduro. Both great bikes, but personally I wouldn't go for an enduro, too many non-standard parts meaning it could become a pain in the censored to own over the very long term. I'm also not overly convinced about Specialized's suspension setup, they always feel nervous to me. Lots of people love them though, very much a personal thing.

    Wolf-ridge? Never had a bike put such a big smile on my face :D The thing just floats over stupid sized rocks like they weren't there, and urges you go launch off of anything and eveything in sight - and lifetime guaranteed swingarm bearings.

    They're all good bikes though (apart from the Kona), and are a great shortlist so I'd suggest you try and test-ride as many of as you can, and see what suits you best.
  • paulscuttpaulscutt Posts: 332
    cant go far wrong with a Pitch, also the new 2010 Zesty 214 is a great frame and easily upgradable, Commencal Meta 5.5.2 have some great deals at Merlin with amazing specs for the £££
    **2009 Trek Remedy 8**

    Specialized P.3 (custom) w/ Deore hydro discs, XT group, Blackspire device, Mavic D321's
  • DoughtyDoughty Posts: 22
    thanks for your feedback. (again, I'm impressed with the swift responses)

    having not bought a bike since 2000, how would I go about arranging test rides and stuff, do shops tend to have demo bikes you can have a ride around the car park on?

    any buying advise with regard to the actual buying and finding of retailers would be very welcome also.

    (I am in the Leicester area)
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 79,667
    Not sure about specific shops in Leicester, but most bike shops seem to allow, or can organise a test ride.
    Some brands also do demo days, it's probably worth checking the manufacturer's websites, and Bikeradar for details of when they're organised. Unfortunately, most of these large demo days tend to be in the spring, but they do give you a great opportunity to test ride the latest and greatest on some real trails.
  • DoughtyDoughty Posts: 22
    excellent, thanks for your help, I am going to try and locate a Marin and a GT dealer near(ish) to me.

    if anyone else wants to throw in any more, I'm all ears :)

    I just browsed to a Cannondale Moto 4... that looks like an absolute weapon! drool....
  • Moo-03Moo-03 Posts: 22
    iv went through the same thing about 2 months ago. searchin for the right ride after so long out of the saddle. i asked on forums for people views like yourself then narrowed the choice down to about 4. i managed to track shops down and got totest ride them all by makin an appointment with them.
    i am now a proud owner of a specialized enduro comp 09 that i picked up for £1600 plus the guy in the shop threw a camelbak mule, dmr v12's and a shock pump in for free which works out at £135ish.
    iv done 280 miles of long distance on and off road plus some shorter rides. the only thing is that i havnt got my saddle right or i need a diffrent one that right for my butt bone.
    my advice would be to travel as far as you need to try everyone o you can get it right :wink:
    if you aint broke it ya aint ridin hard enough
  • DoughtyDoughty Posts: 22
    Thanks for that reply, I am planning a few bike shop visits this weekend :D

    I'm interested to know what your 4 choices were?
  • mikezer0mikezer0 Posts: 122
    I snagged a Wolf Ridge 6.9 from Rutland Cycles for a shade under £2K I know they had some 6.8's left too. They have, or had at the time a demo bike as well... Only managed a few rides since, but I love it. Off to Wales in a week or so!
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 79,667
    Mikezer, you'll fall in love with your Wolf-ridge in Wales, I guarantee you :D

    I went for the 6.7, because I actually prefered the black colour scheme, and already had higher-end bits to stick on anyway, so I didn't need the higher spec of the 6.8 or 6.9.

    But, the spec is excellent as stock even on the 6.7.

    Where about in Wales are you going?
  • mikezer0mikezer0 Posts: 122
    Glyncorrwg and around that area... Can't wait!
  • yepyep Posts: 45
    don't listen to what that guy said about the Kona Dawg being censored , because from my experiances it isn't, i have take it to the alps to do some freeride, done most of the scotish trail centres and local DHs on this bike, and it has been great for all of these. so as he said best to try them coz they all feel different to other people.
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 79,667
    Yep, what I said is just my opinion. Unfortunately, we will disagree on this, because I absolutely abhor Kona's full-suss design.
  • DoughtyDoughty Posts: 22
    thanks for everyones input.

    some extra information for you all.

    here is pretty much what I ride right now... ... &Type=bike

    I am getting a lot of pedal strikes and the odd chainring catches, maybe I have the sag set too low? either way, this annoys me so I am paying close attention to the bottom bracket heights.
    (I have to admit to never setting the sag properly, but I know its not ridiculously 'wrong' though)

    looking at the profile pictures of the bikes I am looking at I have noticed the following...
    - Spesh Enduro/Pitch - BB above axle height - good!
    - Giant Reign - BB seems quite low (still higher than what I have...)
    - Marin Wolf Ridge - just above axles height...
    - GT Force - BB above axle

    could anyone give me feedback on their AM ride and let me know if you find pedal strike or chainring grind an issue?

    also comparing the profile pictures, it seems the AM bikes have their bars much further back, I feel happy knowing this, I did feel quite front bias when I was riding at the weekend.
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 79,667
    Careful with too high a bottom bracket as well, it can make the bike feel unwieldy when changing direction.

    My old bike had a land-rover esque BB height, and I had to work hard to make it change direction.
    The new wolf ridge, however, changes direction like a housefly, but still has a high enough BB to avoid crashing it onto most obstacles.
  • DoughtyDoughty Posts: 22
    good point...

    so you do you think I just have BB height paranoia from my experiences of my last ride? :D

    I would check my current sag settings and pedal and BB height just so I know what to compare against.
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 79,667
    Doughty wrote:
    good point...

    so you do you think I just have BB height paranoia from my experiences of my last ride? :D
    Not at all. I've ridden several bikes where the BB height was too low - in my opinion.
    Particularly DH bikes, why bother having 8" travel, when your BB is millimetres off the floor to begin with? :lol:
  • What about a Trek Fuel EX8? ... gory_id=80
    I'm not usually a 'complete bike' buyer, I prefer to tinker and censored up component parts into a full bike, but they look really nice in the flesh.
    You could probably find one a bit closer to your price bracket.
  • DoughtyDoughty Posts: 22
    the Trek looks nice, but its not got the travel I am looking for, it looks to only have 120mm front and rear?

    not sure if I am being a travel snob, but I do want a big travel bike, I just have it in my head thats all :D

    I'm actually really liking the look and geometry of the Spesh Enduro... but it has a lot of non-standard components (as was said before) what kind of things?

    my last specialized bike is still going fine 9 years later and I have only replaced headset and brake pads...
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 79,667
    Not sure about the current Enduro, but they ised to require at least specific hubs, brake adapters, and headsets in the past.
  • Two mates have the Spesh enduro, and now that their suspension woes are sorted they've been very reliable and good performing bikes.

    I'd still buy the Pitch though.
  • DoughtyDoughty Posts: 22
    I have compared the profiles on the pitch and the enduro but I just prefer the enduro for some reason...

    I will see if I can research the component sizes on the enduro...

    having said that, my eye is still on the Marin...

    I really haven't a clue... hopefully it will be clear when I see them at the shop this weekend
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 79,667
    Doughty wrote:
    having said that, my eye is still on the Marin...
    Good man! :lol:
    it will make you very very happy! :wink:
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 79,667
    sssssh! :lol:

    Seriously though, I'm liking this bike more and more, the more I ride it.
  • Moo-03Moo-03 Posts: 22
    dude sorry for the late reply to Which was the 4 i had in mind question you asked.
    1 kona bass- had roughly the suss travel i was lookin for but wasnt really for the use i wanted it for.
    2 trek fuel- nice lookin bike but it just didnt feel right for me.
    3 marin- only because they are with-in throwing distance from my house in hastings but they didnt have anything in for my budget.
    4 spec enduro- got the right size frame for me, it'll do everything i want it for and a bit more if need be, plus the bargin i got as said earlier.
    if ya go to specailized website it gives ya all the spec and dimensions for all the frame sizes plus all the other info ya want to look at.
    hope this helps ya dude
    if you aint broke it ya aint ridin hard enough
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