Bikes you buy before trying

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  • Bikes you buy before trying
  • theflatboy

    i bought a merlin untried. i love it.

    hope that helps!

    i’ve bought all my bikes untried, although i did weekend demo a marin east peak in ’99 or ’98 because i was curious to see what full suss was like (at the time i was riding a fully rigid p7).

    Premier Icon edd

    I had a custom frame built – obviously that was untried. Doesn’t really answer your question though…

    Premier Icon darrell

    got my Bfe untried. but no-one markets them over here in Norway. But couldnt be happier with it


    got my kinesis untried, new it was a but of a risk, love it! However a kinesis is not merlin money, maybe someone on here Has one you could test?

    I’ve never test ridden a new bike before buying as I’ve always had a good enough idea of what I wanted and done the research to back it up.

    Most bikes ride well enough these days to make that leap of faith and getting it to suit you/your riding style is down to how you set it up (e.g. stem length, bar width, fork adjustments, wheels, tyres, etc).


    Try before you buy? Where’s the fun in that?

    Could have saved me a few pounds over the years though 😉

    Maybe buy second hand, at least at first, that way you could always sell on with minimal loss.


    Assuming the insurance pay for my beloved Scott Scale I will be back in the market. More than happy to replace the Scott which was fast & lean as I like my hardtails though it could be a little more forgiving on a longer ride. Tried the Whyte 19 carbon which I liked a lot but it got me thinking about titanium. Would I like a Merlin XLM? Don’t know anyone who would demo it, certainly not more than I ride around the block which is pointless. I bought my Yeti ASR untried & never really fell for it. Would you by untried?


    I’ve not demo’d any bikes and I’ve got a Merlin which took 5 months to arrive from ordering (they had only just shown the dealers in Tennessee and my LBS phoned me up and told me about them).
    Try Two Wheels 01384 394653 – they may have a XLM you could try.

    Premier Icon turboferret

    Don’t think I’ve tried any of my bikes before buying them, fortunately I haven’t had any nasty shocks, although I was expecting my OCLV road frame to be more comfortable than it is, but it was a gift from a mate, so I’m not complaining 🙂

    Cheers, Rich


    Again – never tried any of them. Bought my Stumpy FSR from a LBS and, based on their advice, got a small. It took me a good 9 months of fiddling around with layback posts, longer stems etc. to convince myself it was too small. Everything else has been based on “research”, or a bluddy good idea of what I’m after. Can’t say I’ve really been disappointed in any of my choices. I didn’t keep my Inbred very long, but that was really my first practice at self-build, so I wasn’t expecting much.

    Premier Icon takisawa2

    Bloke at work is rumoured to have got his Wife un-ridden.
    Well, at least not by him anyway.
    She’s Thai.

    Lashed £700 on my Enduro frame without trying one.
    Still love it 5yrs on.


    I didn’t get to test a Pitch before getting mine, but I did trial an Enduro SL which is reasonably similar.


    bought my Cotic Soda frame untested. That was a bit of a punt as the geometry is so very different from the norm. Very happy wit it, although I was a bit nervous about shelling out all that dosh on a bit of a wing and prayer

    Premier Icon Gnnr

    Bought my Turner frame untried. Best advice is to find the top tube length etc and make sure its similar to your current setup.

    Did buy one Kona untested many moons ago and hated it. The Turner fits like a glove.


    Foes xct curnutt air, whyte 19 and boardman pro. The foes was the biggest punt but I love it.


    Another Pitch owner that didn’t try it beforehand.


    how big are you? you can try my custom built indyfab ti deluxe if you like
    see if you like ti at least – which you will


    Yep, all my bikes have never been test ridden beforehand.
    Cannondale Chase – read the reviews – it sounded perfect. Two good years thrashing it about. Sold that to make way for a full sus. Bought an On-One Growler on a whim (and the price was great). Another great bike. I have had two good years on that too. In the meantime I wanted another HT and so bought an On-One summer season. Good reviews and price. Sold the Growler last month – as much as I enjoyed riding it, it was just a bit too heavy for everyday use. Bought a Rocky Mountain Slayer SXC frameset and I don’t forsee a change for a long time now. The Chase and Growler were not mistakes but they obviously weren’t right or I would still have them, however I don’t regret owning them one bit. I just think I have reached the perfect balance with my two remaining bikes.

    merlin was bought untried

    Rocky Mountain was bought untried

    think that’s it


    It’s difficult to get to ride all the bikes in your budget without travelling across half of the planet.

    It’s nigh on impossible to get to ride any of them offroad.

    There are ocassional roadshow events where you can try bikes out, run by some of the bigger manufacturers, but i haven’t heard of one round my way. A one manufacturer experience is hardly the best scenario, but better than no event.

    Having ridden several other bikes, they all feel very different to me, let alone discovering how they handle etc.

    I don’t trust magazine artcles and struggle to understand the weird descriptive terms sometimes, but reviews are highly subjective anyway.

    It’s a bit of a lottery, but try out your mates bikes and then hope you get lucky.

    Premier Icon JohnClimber

    I didn’t test ride my Inbred or BFe but not had a problem with them thanks to the advise I got from you lot on STW.

    I had a drunken spin around Avemore town centre at SSWC 07 and then a short loop in Drumlanrig SSUK 08 before I bought my Jones. I couldn’t have been happier with my choices.


    I’ve never had a sensible test ride of any of my bikes – though I did ride my Kona Cindercone around a dark cellar below Nottingham On yer bike in the early 90s!

    Premier Icon clareymorris

    Tried all mine………’s fun going out on demo rides!!

    Actually, that’s a lie I didn’t try the P7. I built it up and it’s my fave!

    Just wondering there if you are moe likely to get away without trying a hardtail. Rear suspension and all those different types of linkeages can totally change the handling of a bike can’t they?

    Premier Icon ton

    i bought my ventana 29r without a testride.
    big leap of faith…

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