New to MTB

Carl83 Posts: 2
edited July 2010 in MTB beginners
Hello, Im Carl. Im new to MTB, well I havent had a bike since I was in my early teens.

The main reason to get a bike is to try and help my knees heal from torn ligaments and to lose weight. I tore the ligaments by playing rugby and want to try and get them stronger again. Also, to lose some much needed weight lol. :D

I have just purchased a Grand 200 mountain bike (not sure if thats a good make our not, but was a reasonable price). It has dual suspension, 18 gears and V brakes.

So far I have the essentials, helmet, lock, pump, puncture repair kit, etc, but would like to ugrade my brakes. They are currently plastic V brakes and would like to get some metal ones. I have found a set of Shimano V brakes on ebay for £20, so may get those.

Im really just after any advice you guys can give me, best way to look after my bike, best bits to buy (I am just a beginner so wouldnt want to spend alot) the best sort of routes to take (in the Basingstoke area if poss) and just anything else that would be helpful.

Many thanks in advance



  • GJC
    GJC Posts: 198
    Hi Carl thats why i took up mountain biking too many rugby injuries. Advice i would give just get out and ride.

    Lapierre Spicy 316 2011
  • rockmonkeysc
    rockmonkeysc Posts: 14,774
    As above just ride and enjoy.
    If you want to upgrade you could maybe get some better brake pads & if you have plastic brake levers change them for aluminium, but I wouldn't go any further with your bike. I would also stick to relativley smooth trails although your bike is styled like a mountain bike it wouldn't last too long off road.
    If you enjoy it enough then maybe invest in a entry level hardtail bike like a Carrera Vulcan or a Specialized Hardrock for about £350 these will allow you to ride pretty much any trail, a lot faster, with a lot less effort & they wont break as easily.
  • cooldad
    cooldad Posts: 32,599
    Not worth trying to upgrade it. You'd have to replace every component including the frame.
    What RockmonkeySC said - if you enjoy riding upgrade to a entry level hardtail.
    You might find your bike hard work though - heavy and I would expect serious pedal bob.
    And stay off any mountains.
    I don't do smileys.

    There is no secret ingredient - Kung Fu Panda

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  • rockmonkeysc
    rockmonkeysc Posts: 14,774
    Not long until the 2011 models come out which means serious reductions on 2010 & even 2009 models, just because of a new paint job.
  • Briggo
    Briggo Posts: 3,537
    Thats the same frame as the Apollo bikes in Halfords.

    Probably not what you want to hear but its not a very good bike at all, very heavy, the suspension is non-existant and I suspect it'll ride like a bitch.

    However if you intend on just riding around on smooth paths / roads then sure it'll do the job of getting you from A to B and giving you a good workout due to the weight, however for that type of riding you'd be much better off with a much lighter hybrid.

    The new WMB tested a similar full sus and it weighed a staggering 44.5 lb's!

    To be honest, I wouldn't upgrade anything and just save up a few hundred for a better bike for whatever style of riding you intend on doing.
  • Andy525
    Andy525 Posts: 58
    Hi Carl,

    Buy the OS map 144 for Basingstoke, from WH Smiths or GO outdoors, loads of bridle and by ways around here. Some real good ones south out of Cliddesden. Some good routes out of Winklebury towards Kingsclere which don't have much road riding and are not as steep uphill as the Cliddesden/Ellisfield/Farleigh ones.

    Did a whisker under 36 Km with only about 10 K on the road mainly getting across town today.


    Cube Acid
    Specialised Allez
    Raleigh Flyer, from along time ago....................
  • I,m gonna have to go with the general consensus ! keep what you have and dont upgrade anything major, see how you adapt to it and if it works for you ?
    If the results are evident then look at upgrading the whole bike, there are some decent 2nd hand bikes about that could be well worth double what they may sell for or as said above look at buying an older model.

    Just ride it and enjoy it ! i find riding my Bike keeps the weight off like nothing else can, That said i do a few miles and it does take up a lot of my time !
    But then again so does going down the Pub But in reverse ?

    If you follow ?