> After visiting a couple of bike stores today and riding many
>different bikes i have a few questions. So far, the Marin Nail Trail
>looks like a really good bike to me. I'm going to add a Manitou 4 or
>Judy XC (any comment here--all offroad riding but not a lot of
>hills). Does anyone have any other suggestions in the $1000 range--
>try me, I probably rode it today! There's definately a lot of quality
>bikes in this price range, but I'd like to get some other opinions.
I just bought a Balance AL450 with the Manitou shock. It is a 94 with an
aluminum frame with all STX sp. ed. (this year's STX-RC). I got a good deal
since it is a 94. I rode it this weekend and I LOVE IT!
I rode my fav 9 mile route that has some fairly technical sections and after
the ride I felt so fresh I could have done the ride again (my legs were not so
fresh at the start 'cause I did the bike leg of a tri the day before to give
some perspective). I contribute the great ride to the weight of the bike (6
lbs lighter than my old tank) and the shock. I was riding with a Softride stem
shock on the tank.
1) get a light weight bike (< 27 lbs) and consider aluminum
2) if you go with aluminum definitely get a shock to offset the stiffer ride
3) if you don't go with aluminum, still get a shock (I have a nagging low back
problem and it always feels worse the day after I ride. I can barely tell I
4) Try a Balance