Bike Shopping

As I’ve stated in other post, I am currently riding a 16 year old Cannondale F300.  I love the bike but many of the components are starting to get wore out and need to be replaced.  So, I have started my search for a new bike and I have started to save a well.  I expect this to be about a 9 month to one year process.

First, here are some of the things I will be considering when purchasing a new bike:

  • Frame material – I will probably go with an Aluminum frame; however, there are some Carbon-Fiber frames in the price point I’m look at.
  • Fork (Front Suspension) – RockShox or FOX seems to be two very good brands, 100mm of travel with lockout
  • Drive Train – my current bike has 3 rings up front with nine in the back.  The new configuration is one-two rings in the front with 10 or 11 in the back.  I am planning to go with 2 up front with 10 in the back.
  • Component Group – Shimano SLX or XT mixed in with RaceFace Cranks and BB
  • Wheel Size – I’m taking the move up to 29″.  I think I’ve waited long enough.

The Bikes:

NORCO Revolver

Where I’m riding there seems to be a lot of SPECIALIZED brand bikes – they are very nice bikes.  But, I would like to get a bike that sticks out a little bit and one that is not readily available around here.  This led me to the two bikes that are currently in my top 2.  As the summer moves on, I might find a few other brands that I like but until then I will stick with this two. The first one is the NORCO Revolver, a carbon fiber frame with mostly SRAM components.  Here’s the description from the NORCO website:

The 2014 Revolver is the World Cup-level platform crowning Norco’s XC Race program. The Revolver is the stiffest and lightest XC Race bike Norco has ever made. Period. Proprietary high modulus carbon frames are designed to surge up climbs and dominate any descent. Power transfer is anchored by sleek, oversized tubing from headset junction to rear dropout, providing an exceptionally stiff pedaling platform that channels every ounce of energy through to the rear wheel and ultra-rigid 142 x 12 axle. Built on blood, sweat and grit, the 2014 Revolver has what it takes to win – you supply the heart.

Rocky Mountain Vertex

The next bike that I am looking at with some level of seriousness is the Rock Mountain Vertex.  The frame material is Aluminum and the component group is a mix of Shimano and Race Face parts.  Here is the description from the Rocky Mountain website:

The Vertex provides incredible climbing traction and rollover performance delivered on 29” wheels. RTC™ enables the bike to feel agile and confident on all areas of the race course, including technical cornering and descents. With incredible stiffness to weight, the SMOOTHWALL™ Carbon Vertex RSL is the choice for those looking to chase personal bests or to do battle on any World Cup start-line.

“Twenty-niner hardtails are generally lauded for their ability to steamroll over trail obstacles, but agility isn’t often a trait they’re associated with. The Vertex, on the other hand, is one of the nimblest 29ers we’ve ridden.” – James Huang, BikeRadar


I haven’t shopped for bikes in over 16 years, so a lot has changed.  If you are familiar with either of these bikes I’d love to hear your thoughts.  Again, I will not be buying my next bike till the late fall or early spring (2015) so I have plenty of time to research this decision.

Thanks for reading!


2 thoughts on “Bike Shopping

  1. I’d skip the race face, at least the race face deus. I have it and it sucks up mud like nobody’s business. I know most of chain suck it the chain and lube, but it is especially tight and doing some research online reveals a lot of chain suck complaints.

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