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Best value for money- what would you pick

hi all,

Hope you keeping and riding safe

Wonder if I could canvas option please as spent 2 weeks back and forth trying to decide on a bike...

Been many years off bikes, having raced road, cx, mtb, dh, track, bmx (briefly πŸ™„) and want to get back on board and get fit again riding with the mrs (fairly new to riding)

Considered a hybrid, as we will mainly be on crappy back roads, bike paths, gravel and easy forest type tracks, but struggled to find decent kit at decent price. Was going to go for a sirrus x 4, but the shop I need to buy from (works cycle 2 work provider - cyclesolutions) is out of stock in my size (I'm 6ft so circa 19inch or large) and can't find any others I like on there.

So, I got thinking of a 29er instead. So many options and seems you do get more for the money, and they have some in stock in my size 😊

I wonder therefore which you'd pick? Has to be Β£1100 or less and I want the forks to lock out given I could likely do without any suspension.

Seems that these are my options;

Merida big nine limited - looks decent enough, but I've never head of them and not sure I like the sound of a press fit bottom bracket (whats wrong with a threaded?) I do like the through hub idea though (wasn't about when I was riding). Not sure if the sram sx eagle is better/worse than a shimano equivalent?

Scott scale 965 - fair bit heavier, has SLX vs sram (not sure if better or not) and is quick release vs through axle. Have heard of and ridden old scotts.

Scott scale 970 - looks good, bit cheaper, back to sram.

Scott aspect 910 - cheaper still but heavier still, qr wheels.

Scott scale 980 - cheaper, heavier, qr wheels.

What say thee? Or would you pick something else (have to get it via cyclesolutions though or I don't get the savings of the scheme and budget drops down 300 quid).

Cheers all, I'm excited to get back out there soon 😊


  • Are you sure you have to go through cycle solutions? You can get a LOC from the scheme and redeem that from any outlet that will take it (I had the same thought regarding my work's C2W thinking i had to have Halfords but I didn't). Might be a different scheme, there are several, but worth a check.

    I got a Merida Big Seven just in time for lockdown (yey, timing!) and really like it. Apparently Merida are huge and make loads of stuff for other brands (Specialized etc) as well as selling under their own name.
    There's always someone having a worse day than you.
    Usually it's me.
  • rhupexrhupex Posts: 6
    Yes, unfortunately we're tied in to that firm, so that is my only choice (or pay more and buy myself).

    OK, thanks, thats good to know, the big 7 has a vote πŸ‘ or two, as it is my fave of the bunch due to the through axles (want to see what they like, despite wont make any difference to my riding πŸ˜‚)
  • rhupexrhupex Posts: 6
    oops, I'm taking big 9 vs 7, not a clue what difference is but I'll transpose the vote to the 9 πŸ˜‰πŸ€£
  • oxomanoxoman Posts: 8,851
    Merida are major players in bike manufacturing, owning specialized amongst building for a lot of others. Probably one of the most underrated bikes around. Eagle is a good group set, through axles pretty much the norm on decent bikes. Press fit is widely used, not everyone likes them but not that bad.
    Too many bikes according to Mrs O.
  • reaperactualreaperactual Posts: 827
    Not going to recommend a specific bike or brand. Just a more general take on options available.

    Sram/Shimano both good quality and only slight difference in shift lever configuration. Not wanting to get into nitty gritty too much.

    Generally would say choosing bikes with newer trends in 1x drivetrains are very simple and user friendly.

    Thru axles are better for stiffer more responsive ride and good for upgrading as much more adaptable to different standards if you're thinking of this in the future.

    Quick release is fine and has been around for many years but less and less compatible upgrade options for forks etc. If your new bikes frame has quick release you are stuck with it.

    Most forks usually have lock out functions.

    Nothing wrong with threaded bb's but newer Hollowtech II or similar, two piece cranks rather than old school square taper set ups. Hear of press fit bb's having troubles with creaking issues but I have no first hand experience of them.

    I prefer 27.5 wheels but 29er are fine just personal taste and different characteristics for speed and stiffness.

    Then after you have decided act fast as with current situation stock is dwindling fast as everyone is looking for a bike at the moment. Stay safe, happy riding.
  • rhupexrhupex Posts: 6
    Thanks oxoman, sounds like another vote for the merida πŸ‘ might see if they have a cheaper one and what difference is between them. Not opposed to paying for more, if its warranted, but not after paying extra 200 quid for a different paint scheme or tyres if rest is the same πŸ€” too much choice for my liking 🀣
  • As far as I'm aware the Merida big seven and big nine are basically the same bike but with 29er or 27.5 wheels. I went for seven because I'm short and just preferred it.
    There's always someone having a worse day than you.
    Usually it's me.
  • rhupexrhupex Posts: 6
    Thanks both. The info re the bike bits is spot on, defo want to experience some newer technologies through hubs are appealing etc. And good to know I can use sram and not miss shimano. Sram was very new when I was riding and I never specd it on any of my bikes.

    Will do some reading πŸ™„ but sounds like any suit the bill.

    29ers appeal for the road like bias, and again as new, was unheard of in my day, 26.5 was the norm 🀣

    Thanks all, 🀞 still stock left by the time I decide
  • rhupexrhupex Posts: 6
    So I've decided to just buy a bike, not happy with what I can get through work scheme and the wait times (will be about 6/8 weeks), so have been looking around and found these 2, which would you pick or know of better value for money?

    Cube c:62 2019, Β£1,119, part xt part slx, mt200 brakes, rear boost through hub and front QR, recon silver fork, carbon frame.

    Cube reaction sl 2019, Β£1,279, full xt (bar cassette), boost through hubs front and back, fox 32 rhythm fork, alu frame.

    Realise both are far more than I need, but I don't want to have to be buying another bike in a year or two when want to do more as fitness comes back etc.

    What say thee, as I've tied myself in knots looking now πŸ™„

  • JBAJBA Posts: 2,713
    Out of those 2 I'd go for the Reaction SL. It is only 500g heavier than the C:62 but is better equipped.

    β€œLife has been unfaithful
    And it all promised so so much”

    Giant Trance 2 27.5 2016 Β¦ Sonder Broken Road 2021Β¦ Bird Zero Mk1 Β¦ Giant Revolt Advanced 2 2019 Β¦ Giant Anthem 3 2015 Β¦ Specialized Myka Comp FSR 2009
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