If you are new to mountain biking, learning about them can seem a bit intimidating and possibly a little confusing. There are tons of terms to learn, different types of bikes that have different levels of performance, and so on. While there is a lot to unpack, do not let the variety and choice keep you from pursuing this increasingly popular activity. Mountain biking is a ton of fun and it is a great hobby that can be as relaxing or action-packed as you want it to be. Many people bike for relaxation and leisure, and many also bike for adrenaline and thrills.
Whatever your reason for being interested in mountain biking, it is a great pursuit for people of all ages and all abilities. There are quite a few terms that have to be parsed out though and so, for the purposes of this article, we are going to discuss the relative merits of full suspension fork mountain bikes. We will then briefly review a few different models of full suspension mountain bike to give you a good overview of features, price, and more.
Why a Full Suspension Mountain Bike?
Mountain bikes can actually have a number of different suspension combinations, though the most common is what is called a hardtail suspension, which is just a front suspension. In times past, you could typically get either a front or rear suspension, both of which were comprised of a rigid frame and fork.
More recently, full suspensions have been introduced. These are also often called dual suspension or full-susser suspensions. What it basically means is that there is shock absorption both on the front and back wheel, as opposed to just one.
What this does is provide for a much smoother ride when on a rough trail than you find with hardtail or rear suspension bikes. They are also often a bit easier to handle, but they do not have the agility or top speed of hardtail bikes. Full suspension bikes, due to the extra hardware they are fitted with, tend to be a bit heavier than their hardtail counterparts.
If you plan on doing a lot of riding on rough or hard terrain, a full suspension will provide a more comfortable ride. If you do a lot of downhill riding, you are likely to find that a full suspension bike is also superior as it is easier to handle and more comfortable to ride a full suspension bike down a steep descent.
Kent KZ2600 Dual Suspension Mountain Bike
Kent is a reputable and quality maker of mountain bikes of many types and sizes. Their KZ2600 Full Suspension Mountain Bike is a well-built, sturdy mountain bike that is perfect for the beginner rider who wants to hit the trails. It is available for about $200, making it an excellent choice for those who want a quality, yet budget-friendly full suspension option.
The bike features a 26” wheel base and full suspension aluminum MTB frame for a smooth and comfortable ride. It also boasts a suspension fork with 65 mm of travel for increased smoothness. It also boasts a Shimano 21-speed shifter with rear tourney dérailleur.
The bike also features front disc brakes and rear linear pull brakes. It also has alloy wheel rims for durability and sharp design.
Diamondback Bicycles Atroz Complete Full Suspension Mountain Bike
Diamondback Bicycles is one of the best-known makers of high-end bikes of all shapes and styles. They feature a number of full suspension mountain bike options, including the cutting edge Atroz Full Suspension Bike. This is a top-of-the-line, well-machined bike that is available for about $800.
The bike is hand-built and made from 4-inch travel 6061 T-6 aluminum alloy with an incredibly strong and durable full suspension. The bike has an optimized single pivot with sealed cartridge bearings, which further add to the comfort and smoothness of the ride.
The bike also boasts a SRAM 9-speed drive train. This gives you tons of range when it comes to your gearing, making this bike a great choice for all terrain. The bike also has RockShox Monarch R rear shock and SR Suntour XCM forks to absorb impacts. The bike also features Tektro Aries disc brakes, which are top of the line breaks known for their superior stopping power.
Gravity FSX 1.0 Dual Full Suspension Mountain Bike
Gravity is an up and coming maker of a range of different performance bikes, including full suspension bikes like their FSX 1.0 Dual Suspension Mountain Bike. It is a high-end bike featuring advanced braking, shifting, and a strong and durable construction, available for less than $400.
The bike is available in five different colors and is also available in 15”, 17”, 19”, and 21” sizes. The bike is made from lightweight, yet strong and durable aluminum frames and features an adjustable front and rear suspension.
The bike also features double wall rims and quick release wheels on the front and rear, as well as front and rear disc brakes. The bike also features Shimano shifters for smooth and easy gear changing.
For those new to mountain biking, all the terminology and choice can be intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be. If you know the basics, you will have a much easier time choosing the type and model of bike that will best work for your needs, body type, and budget. For those who are doing most of their riding on rough terrain or doing a lot of steep, downhill descents, full suspension bikes are what we recommend for the most stable and comfortable ride.
Unlike traditional hardtail bikes, full suspension bikes have shock absorbers on both the front and the back wheels, providing enhanced stability and making the ride far smoother and more comfortable. There are tons of different types of full suspension bikes that cover a range of price points and enhanced features. Whether you choose one of the models we briefly review here or use this guide as a starting point, you are now armed with what you need to make a quality decision as to the best full suspension bike for you.
Kevin Stard – professional sportsman in category MTB. Participant of the Downhill World Cup #1