View Full Version : First time bike buyer looking for some help

04-26-2011, 07:50 PM
I really know nothing about bikes first off.
I am looking for a good used mountain bike. I'm not looking to spend a fortune but I think I am in the $400 market. I was in a bike shop the other day and saw a few nice used ones in that range, but I really didn't know what I was looking at.
I'm looking for a bike to hit the paths and trails with, nothing too crazy or extreme.
Just wondering what type of bike (hardtail, jump, full suspension?), brand (Giant, Trek, Norco?), type of tires (knobbies, inverted tread?), suspension and so on I should be looking for.

Any help would be great.


04-26-2011, 07:57 PM
If $400 is your budget, I'd STRONGLY suggest looking on the buy/sell on www.pinkbike.com

04-26-2011, 07:59 PM

04-26-2011, 08:32 PM
$400 won't get you a decent mountain bike. Just go used. :)

BUT! If you found some on your price range and you're not doing crazy, I'd go for hardtail; cheap but you still get absorption in the front. I find full bikes too bouncy for me.

04-26-2011, 10:26 PM
pinkbike.com....nuff said. I see it's already been mentioned.

Also check out bike shops sometimes your budget might grow after seeing a bike hehe.

I was looking at spending 600/700 and ended up finding a 2000$ for 999$ and bought it on the spot.

Sometimes you can find amazing deals when you shop around.

04-27-2011, 09:29 AM
For a $400 price range - just stick with a hardtail, you should be able to find something used. Pinkbike.com as said before me.

In relative to brands, all of them you mentioned are fine. Sadly at a $400 dollar bike, there isn't going to be a big difference between any brand as almost all the frames are built in the same factory. I would focus more on the components each bike has (so you have to do your reserch) followed by the bike's look (if you care about that)

Questions that come up:
What is your relative experience on bikes?
As it's your first bike, you don't really know what you want yet. Like the quality of the components, how heavy the bike should be or types of brakes are just some brief examples. You could go for a lower end bike to figure out what you want.

However, Some people say buy a nicer bike straight up so you don't need to upgrade and spend more money in the long run. I did that and I'm quite happy that I didn't need to drop more funds on a new bike.

How many times do you plan to bike this season?
It's a pain to transport lower end bikes that are heavy and/or with V brakes when you need to remove the front tire.

When you say paths and trails, are these Asphalt or dirt trails?
Determines the tires and frame you want

04-27-2011, 09:44 AM
My only misgiving about a guy who knows nothing about bikes buying a used bike is ending up with something that seems to ride nice but ends up needing another $300 of parts because it's tuned up at the moment but drivetrain, etc. is all worn out.