Marin Novato 2003 Hybrid Bike

USER REVIEWS

Showing 1-2 of 2  
[Dec 19, 2007]
Anonymous
Commuter

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
3
Strength:

Frame: Light and still fairly stiff. No imperfections in the paint. Good quality components.

Weakness:

Not really a commuter bike as designed. Welding a bit uneven in one or two places. Difficut to mount lights on a tapering handlebar. Rear fender was bent out of the box.

This is a 2006 model. A bit of a disappointment, but a nice bike. It is supposed to be a "city bike" but it is really a mountain bike with fenders & 26 x 1.5 in wheels. Handle bar is flat with a slight rise and constant taper to shifters & brake handles, making it difficult to mount lights. Carry a rubber band to keep your suit pants out of the chain. I did not like the way forward angle of the handlebars & had to buy a new adjustable stem. Factory website says bar is adjustable, but you can only rotate the bar, not change stem angle or height. I'm commuting, remember? Handle bar shape makes it very difficult to mount lights. Front reflector came with a seat post mount, not front mount. Flasher built into the seat was a cool idea, but it does not work. I do like the frame, it is almost as stiff as steel, but quite light. All components are good quality middle of the road Shimano or equivalent. You can put non-quick release spindles in the axles to discourage theft. Since this is a city bike, not a mountain or road bike, it should have a kickstand. Like the other reviewer, I find myself having to spend more money after purchase to get it right. Great paint job, I've seen better welding. Decent value if you can get a good discount.

Similar Products Used:

Specialized, old family built Schwinn. (Those guys knew how to weld!)

[Aug 16, 2003]
John Cahill
Recreational Rider

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
4
Strength:

Beautiful frame construction.

Weakness:

cheapie pedals, bar/stem/grips, upright family Sunday ride position with handlebars/stem.

The Novato is a city bike which is what I was looking for. The frame is aluminum and it has very nice welds and finish. The parts on the bike I found to be a bit silly. The bike is supposed to be an urban bike but it has bent handlebars which would probably be more suited for a heavy trail/rock hopper plus they just look dumb. I replaced the seatpost with a Cane Creek Thudbuster which makes this a much more comfortable ride. I bought a straigt bar and bar ends and better grips to replace the standard bar/grips. I took the stem, turned it upside down and installed it that way to make use of the much better angle. Now, instead of sitting upright, I'm more efficient. I replaced also the pedals as I prefer the old Bear trap pedals. I also added toe clips and straps. Overall it's a decent bike but the price was right and after adding about $300 worth of my own parts, the bike is a much better commuter blaster. You might want to replace the tires as well, the existing slickasaurus tires seem thin and vulnerable to punctures.

Similar Products Used:

Trek.

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