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Cheap "real" bike

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7/21/2021 4:39 PM

Help a brother out here, guys. I'm starting to look for a size-appropriate MTB for my soon-to-be 12 YO kid. He happens to be the same size as my soon-to-be 16 YO daughter, who is also interested in MTBing with me. (You are starting to sense the dilemma I face, I would bet - not enough money or bikes in my life!) His current bike is a Diamondback Line 24 and he's way too big for it.
I want to get one bike he can ride now, which I can make him share with his sis, and then let her have it when he grows out of it, probably sometime before Thanksgiving. The dude is getting bigger every day. unsure
Anyway, money is a factor, as is the possibility that neither kid will love the sport and go all-in. Odds are good they'll like it enough to want to keep riding, but not enough that they'll care to have full-suspension bikes or great components. So, I'll need a bike that is reasonably capable and will last.
For those reasons, I want to snag something better than a Target bike, but less than a full-fledged name-brand bike. 99% sure we're looking at hardtails for now. I've been checking out offerings from Commencal, Canyon, Devinci and the like, but I don't think I even want to spend $1000-$1200. I'm drawing a blank on brands to look at, so send me some suggestions. I understand Vitus makes a pretty nice hardtail and in fact a friend who is a new rider just bought one that I'll get to see tomorrow.
I'm thinking: Steel or aluminum hardtail, hydraulic brakes, preferably a 1X drivetrain. Probably 27.5. Not too much else. I'd prefer new, even though I know I'd get more in the used market. Any ideas where I should look?


7/21/2021 6:07 PM

have you tried local classifieds? seems like best bang for buck for sure.

i narrowed down hardtails under $1k in our product guide. plenty to get lost in and may spark an idea (you can narrow down more too if you want),3/?discontinued=false&rear_travel%5B%5D=hardtail&cat=Product&price%5B%5D=500_750&price%5B%5D=250_500&price%5B%5D=750_1000


7/21/2021 7:39 PM

Oh, awesome. Thanks, Sspomer.


7/21/2021 7:40 PM

Local classifieds for sure. Kid should have a blast on a rigid Gary fisher rig for $350 or something similiar. Plenty usable as a commuter if they don’t love mtb and perfectly good to get cracking on assuming they are in normal shape for a teen/preteen.

My mom rolls with a liv tempt 3 but that’s a lot of money for a bike with a definite limit for abuse. But for lighter trail riding it’s a sweet bike with reasonable geo and spec.