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Balfa BB7 ye or ne?

Discussion in 'Downhill & Freeride' started by DHteamrider28, May 4, 2006.

  1. DHteamrider28

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    Hey...i'm thinking about getting a well set-up balfa bb7 (Marz 888RC, putting an avy rear shock, etc). I was wondering what you guys think? Should i get the BB7? I heard many good things, but also many bad things about the BB7 from all kinds of riders. Its either a BB7, Turner DHR (a lot more money than i would pay for the BB7), Mongoose EC-D (if i can manage to get enough money together), or IH Yakuxa Kumicho 05 (cheaper than BB7, even with upgrades). Dont know what to do? If not any of these frames, what other frames or complete bikes would you suggest? Thanks a lot for the :help: guys.
     
    #1 -   May 4, 2006

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  2. jonKranked

    jonKranked Press Button, Receive Stupid

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    i would go with the balfa, ESPECIALLY if it has an AVY
     
    #2 -   May 4, 2006
  3. NateH

    NateH Monkey

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    I rode a Balfa for 2 years and loved it, it's not the best bike if you are a straight up hucker but for all around DH its a great bike.
     
    #3 -   May 4, 2006
  4. mandown

    mandown Poopdeck Repost

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    a great dh bike. not so good as a pedaling freerider. i had mine set up with an avy and a shiver. it was a bunch of plush suspension. it ate rocks and roots and dropped like you were on a cloud. i am 6'1" and rode a 2003 regular/short. it was a cramped TT when i sat down (almost never) but standing it was great. the bike is a plow and will run over anything. the steeper and rockier the better.
     
    #4 -   May 4, 2006
  5. Transcend

    Transcend My Nuts Are Flat

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    Why not just get a bike that is still in production, and will have support if something breaks on it?

    Bust a chainstay, like many have, and you will be out of luck...

    Oh also, the best setup balfa I ever rode (and I rode MANY of them being friends with their team riders and living in Balfa central) had a 5th on it, curiously enough. I am not a huge fan of the "5th feeling", but it rode really nice with one. The ones I have tried with avalanches all felt incredibly overdamped.
     
    #5 -   May 4, 2006
  6. mandown

    mandown Poopdeck Repost

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    bust a chainstay on a bb7 and you will be in a world of hurt :dead:
     
    #6 -   May 4, 2006
  7. Transcend

    Transcend My Nuts Are Flat

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    That too!

    I just happen to be in an area where for about 5 years, everyone and their dog owned a balfa. I have seen more Balfas break, simply due to sheer numbers on the mountain, than any other bike.

    They have come a long way though. Anyone remember the bobonum and the shoddy "welding" jobs they did as repairs on those? It included throwing on a collar, welding that to the 2 broken tube ends (creating stress risers) and not even stripping before or repainting after. Priceless.
     
    #7 -   May 4, 2006
  8. DHteamrider28

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    yea.....i have to agree with you guys....all the people i talked to so far told me about the same thing...since its out of production its gonna be a pain in the a$$ getting parts for it. A friend of mine told me that balfas are still in production (which i figured was wrong as hell, since the last BB7 produced was in 2003). He said that Balfa in the UK is still operational. I dont think he's right....but then again i dont know....anyone know anything about that?
     
    #8 -   May 4, 2006
  9. mandown

    mandown Poopdeck Repost

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    #9 -   May 4, 2006
  10. AR_

    AR_ Monkey

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    Pretty sure Jamie didn't buy the name, just the rest of the stock and spares.

    I hated my Balfa. Really didn't get on with it at all. My hatred of 5ths probably didn't help matters. Sold it and got a DHR w/DHX. Wish i'de done it sooner!
     
  11. mandown

    mandown Poopdeck Repost

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    interesting that they are using the name and the logo if they did not buy it. not saying you are wrong, just saying that it is interesting.
     
  12. AR_

    AR_ Monkey

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    Yeah, we were all a bit confused this side of the pond too :D I presume they're just allowed to use the name to sell the stock, and so people know where to go for spares etc. Afterall Balfa don't make them anymore, but can't really say "Hey we never made those! Take our names off them!".
     
  13. Transcend

    Transcend My Nuts Are Flat

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    I believe he just got the left over stock and is allowed to operate under that name to sell the stuff off. Not 100% sure though.

    The old Balfa guys are probably not interested in going out of their way to help out someone when their company got bought and shut down.

    Either way, they are no longer in production.
     
  14. skyst3alth

    skyst3alth Monkey

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    I went from a bb7 w/ avy and avy DHF to a Turner. I loved the bb7, it was really low, slack and heavy, but loved it to pieces.

    The turner i'm still getting used to, but it's damn light which makes it ride alot better. I think i'm liking the DHR more, but i'll always have a spot in my heart for bb7's, definetly sweet bikes.

    I don't think you can go wrong either way.

    -Adam
     
  15. no skid marks

    no skid marks Monkey

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    I vote go the BB7 for sure.
    Cromo swingrm,easy to get fixed if you ever have issues(I doubt),read the fine print,transcend saw alot of breaks but he saw a ****load of Balfas.
    If you ride rocky trails I don't recon any of the other bikes listed will handle that type of riding better. If it already has a shock just run that before throwing cash at an Avy. Not hackin on the Avy it would be sweet but run whats in it first.
     
  16. DHteamrider28

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    Yea i know, the 1 i'm looking to buy already has an avy....trust me, if it didnt i wouldn't go and spend $600 on a new avy setup on an old bike...thanks for the advice though....anyone else want to comment on the BB7?
     
  17. Hailight

    Hailight Chimp

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    1600 dollars complete bike

    I mean seriously, how much would you spend to fix a broken frame on a 1600 dollar bike?

    Next: what would break? a steel rear end!? 10mm thick aluminum front triangle? If you break either one of the two you would break any other bike, too.

    Silver Linkage Plates are somewhat a problem if you don't keep them tight enough but even if the wholes should wear out a little it doesn't really matter. And in case you should really completely destroy one of these, it's just a milled piece of aluminum.

    That's what I think and in addition to that I'd way rather spent the money I have left by buying the cheaper balfa on biking trips.
     
  18. DHteamrider28

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    i know the deal sounds great...but you see i'm going to be racing DH with a team, and to be honest i'm not sure if the Balfa would make for a raceworthy or race winning rig (its supposedly really heavy)...and honestly i dont need the money for biking trips....i'm mainly racing locally or just would drive for 3 hours to get to plattekill in NY where i'll be racing as well.....thanks for the advice though...anyone else have anything?
     
  19. 819

    819 Monkey

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    I raced my 2003 for 3 years on the same circuit as Fraiser. I never had any problems. I'm an average size guy. And I never saw or heard of any of the 2002 and up breaking. They can weigh a bit much, but it's a solid bike and for 1600 that is great. I just parted with mine for more then that and it still hurt.
     
  20. Bicyclist

    Bicyclist Turbo Monkey

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    You can do better than a Balfa for $1600. I got a whole Demo 8 for 200 more.
     
  21. Transcend

    Transcend My Nuts Are Flat

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    Wait, you never saw a single Balfa with an issue? You must not have been paying attention, 'cus I have seen lots of cracked balfas. Although, cannot specify the years.

    2002 and up...that gives you 2 production years before they closed up. Although the last one I saw broken was a white one from the last year they made them (with the machined sides).

    Like I said, I have seen more than my fare share break, but I also ride in areas where at times, 50% of the bikes on the mountain have been balfas. That's like saying a lot of fox RCs blow, when they were specced on every almost every bike for 3 years running.
     
  22. DHteamrider28

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    holy sh*t dude.......how did you pull that off? I've been looking since february for good deals on Demos and i've turned up squat....the cheapest one i saw so far was $2000 but it was a really crappy build with bad component spec....that sure was one hell of a deal...your lucky
     
  23. Bicyclist

    Bicyclist Turbo Monkey

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    I've got hook-ups. ;)
     
  24. DHteamrider28

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    yea...i can tell....i'm jellous :D
    ....hook me up if you get the chance :thumb:
     
  25. no skid marks

    no skid marks Monkey

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    Personally I'd rather the BB7 than a demo,especially for racing. Transcend saw a up to 50% of Balfas at some stage,yes in Canada where they're made but still that says something.
    My last BB7 weighed 39lbs with 40s,thats a real non exagirated 39lb. Fairly light for such a beast of a smash anything bike.
    Low COG for racing.
    I had them with Fox RCs and 5ths and I did like the platform 5th better but I recon an Avvy would feel great in one.
    I'll shut up now,I just find it hard not to say great things about the BB7.
     
  26. BRM

    BRM Chimp

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    All bikes will have ISSUES if someone on a Internet site asks the question..Whats better X, Y or Z? My Giant DH has Issues for some but it's the best bike FOR MY RIDING STYLE. (which is fast and hard Boooyaaaa);] So you should get one.
     
  27. ChrisRobin

    ChrisRobin Turbo Monkey

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    Forget swingarm problems, it's getting replacement pulleys that'll kill you...unless the pulley from the new Appalache frame is compatible.
     
  28. zedro

    zedro Turbo Monkey

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    as long as you get the aluminum body pulley, it's just a standard cog to replace after it wears.
     
  29. ChrisRobin

    ChrisRobin Turbo Monkey

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    Ok, let me rephrase it then...

    If you can assure the 'aluminum pulley bodies' from the Appalache are compatible with the BB7, that'll be a plus for you.
     
  30. mandown

    mandown Poopdeck Repost

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    is the pulley subject to wear and abuse? change the cog, change the bearings, good as new. right?
     
  31. ChrisRobin

    ChrisRobin Turbo Monkey

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    I'm not sure. When someone here asks about BB7s, the first thing that comes to mind are the people in the last few years asking or looking for replacement pulleys.
     
  32. 819

    819 Monkey

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    Acutally I've never seen a broke one at all. I've heard the old 2step regulars used to loose headtubes if you put a dual crown on but that was about it. Then again like you said you have probably seen many more of them then me.
     
  33. 819

    819 Monkey

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    The new appalache pullys dont' fit, but Jerome is making replacement pullies for BB7s.
     
  34. zedro

    zedro Turbo Monkey

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    older pulleys had plastic carriers, the newer ones with aluminum carriers dont need replacing. Like Mandown said, new cog (12t i think), new bearings, good to go. I made my own by hacking off a freehub body and sandwiching it between some Al plates....certainly not rocket science, but it needs to be sturdy.
     
  35. buildyourown

    buildyourown Turbo Monkey

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    I had an '03 and had reletively few issues with it. The pulley held up fine, as did the swingarm. The steel swingarm would be cheap to repair.
    The main pivot bearing is disgustingly undersized and mine had rub issues, but it was a great riding bike. I dumped it cause it was always a bit to short for me.

    I'm on a DHR now. Far and away a better bike. But much pricier too. If the price is good on the BB7, I'd hit it.
     
  36. zedro

    zedro Turbo Monkey

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    yeah i couldnt believe it when i read the specs, but at least it's a good layout. I dont think they knew about bearing load ratings.
     
  37. loulou

    loulou Chimp

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    Yeah I dont know what bearing load ratings are!
    I got lucky and bearing lasted for years on bb7s.
    Keep it on Zedro!
     
  38. buildyourown

    buildyourown Turbo Monkey

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    No they didn't. They froze after 3 weeks and the plates just pivoted on the conical ends of the groosely undersized shaft that was supposed to hold the rear end on. Luckily, the shaft bent, so it would be really hard to get it out.
     
  39. lovebunny

    lovebunny can i lick your balls?

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    yeah the bearings on bb7s are grossly undersized. they should have known from the start not to put bearings that small in the spot on the frame that recieves the most stress. or they couldve at least added one more bearing to each side
     
  40. loulou

    loulou Chimp

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    some young guys go crazy when they find something too small!