Stong, cheap xc bike to get me started again.. ?

mtbguy Posts: 6
edited April 2010 in MTB buying advice
Hi all,

I've decided its finally time to get back on the bike after several years away, I'm 6'2 and currently 19st 10 (I know, working on it, down from 23st so far..). I enjoy just getting out in the country and forests and riding.

I have an old Saracen D-Tox limited edition in the garage which has seen better days, I got a lot of use out of it in its day but I think for what I want to do its the wrong bike now, and probably well out of date anyway.

So I'm looking for a *very* cheap probably hardtail? around £150 - £200 max to get me started, if I can stick to it I'll then reward myself with a decent bike when I'm a bit lighter.

So my main requirement is strength.. can anyone point out any decent bikes available at the moment? Also I've read somewhere that you should get wheels with 42 spokes to support heavier weights?

Thanks for any tips or advice..


  • supersonic
    supersonic Posts: 82,708
    Try the Decathlon Rockrider 5.2.
  • carera vulcan on speicial 20% off down to £240 my brother just got one to start on and it is very nice other than that look for second hand
    carrera kraken
  • mtbguy
    mtbguy Posts: 6
    Thanks for the suggestions so far, the carerra vulcan is over my budget and doesn't seem to be any better than the decathlon rockrider? which looks good. Depends on their delivery charges I guess. Not outruling the vulcan completely though.

    Where can I get wheels from? that aren't more than the cost of the bike :(
  • spongtastic
    spongtastic Posts: 2,651
    you don't need 42 spokes for 19st. 36 would support no problem and 32 would be ok if you're not doing stupid jumps. The wheels that are on both these bikes would be fine.
    Visit Clacton during the School holidays - it's like a never ending freak show.

    Who are you calling inbred?
  • ride_whenever
    ride_whenever Posts: 13,279
    I'd spend 15 quid or so getting the wheels slacked off and retensioned by a good local bike shop. The strength of a wheel comes primarily from the quality of the build rather than inherent strength of parts.
  • mtbguy
    mtbguy Posts: 6
    Thanks for the advice all, I'm going to go for the Decathlon Rockrider, and then get the wheels seen to at a local bike shop as suggested :)
  • Wappygixer
    Wappygixer Posts: 1,396
    mtbguy wrote:
    Thanks for the advice all, I'm going to go for the Decathlon Rockrider, and then get the wheels seen to at a local bike shop as suggested :)

    I've sold hundreds of the 5.2 and several to people your size.No issues with the wheels to be honest.They are conventional 32 spoked wheels, double walled with eyelets, pretty strong.
  • Quirrel
    Quirrel Posts: 235
    I had never really considered wheels and the effect my weight would have on them.

    Is it generally the lighter wheels are more likely to be wrecked by a fatty like me or is it something else?

    What should one look for in aftermarket wheels to know if they are up to the job?
  • supersonic
    supersonic Posts: 82,708
    Depends on your weight, your riding style, and the bike.

    Many combos of stuff. But as has been mentioned, the strongest wheels are no good if built by an ape.
  • stomith
    stomith Posts: 332
    How do you know if an ape built them? I mean: If I am not sure about what the state of my wheels are...and took it to a LBS...How would I know that they have done a good job?