Showcase – Merida Big Seven 500

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CRANK got an opp0rtunity to get its hands on the Merida Big 7 500 2017 model. Our test ride experts Ignatius Chen Chin Fa & Ritwik Burman put the bike through its paces through as a part of our choreographed bike test drill through some soft and rough terrains. The experts had some nice things to say. The Big 7 500 is a premium entry level hardtail mountain bike priced at INR 69,990 designed specifically for cross country and trail riders. It’s a great bike for those who are just starting off but want to be serious about their attempt and aiming for Pro. It comes with the standard Big 7 TFS light-weight aluminium frame that is quite stable and robust especially during climbs. The bike handles well and is very manoeuvrable around corners.

 

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The bike’s cables are routed internally which gives it a clean look. The oversized head tube is strong and feels good when hitting large bumps. The hydraulic disc brakes are the Shimano M355 with a 180mm rotor in the front and a 160 mm rotor at the back. Though it is one of the more beginner models, the brake works well but it definitely could have used a better set. Specifically, the brakes work well enough for riders maintaining moderate speed but at higher speeds coming to a stop can be a bit challenging, despite the rotors. But definitely more than what you can ask for in this category

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The drive train is a Shimano series and the hollow crank gives the bike a solid feel. It allows for a clean and efficient translation of power to the wheels from the pedal. There is no flex in the frame hence no unnecessary energy loss. The shifters are the Shimano Deore, at the front and back, allow for clean, hassle free shifting. The front derailleur is a Deore Triple and the rear derailleur is a SLX Shadow. The Deore shifters make the price seriously competitive. Overall the two-way shifters allow quick shifting when aligned properly and there are no issues in shifting during a climb either, unless you shift wrong. The 2×10 combo is lets you find a good ratio in any terrain. Used right, this bike will probably let you sail through anything an XC terrain can throw at you.

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The RockShox FS30 STK 100mm suspension is an entry level pneumatic suspension. However, it provides good feedback and has an adjustable rebound control that comes with a chart detailing the settings, located on the side of the fork. The pressure can be adjusted for individual weight. The rebound switch despite having an easy reach lock out, is made of plastic. Our experts would have preferred a more durable material but we understand the price component challenge that every brand faces. The suspension feels good even while pushing it hard and allows for quick and easy direction changes. The suspension offers an easy rebound which lowers the jarring feeling you get when you hit a rough patch made up of rocks or gravel.

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The tyres are a Maxxis Ikon 27.5 2.1 fold, which is one of the better tyres in the market meant for a cross country set-up. A 2.2 would have worked better in this case as the wheels would sink into the softer sections while still giving a gritty run on loose soil. The spokes are stainless steel. The hard double wall wheels are a standard in the entire series. A good set at this level

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The saddle is a Merida sport 5, which is quite comfortable, a bit on the wider side though. The handle bar is a MERIDA pro OS 680 R12. A light rise in the handle bar makes it ideal for XC. The 70mm stem has a 10-degree rise is comfortable and adjustable as well. If needed the stem can be dropped an additional 20mm or just flip the stem.

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All in all, the Merida Big 7 500 is a comfortable and reliable MTB that can definitely take you places. The brand has got the delicate feature and component and price balance just right. For 69990 it’s a great buy. We give it an AHT (average head turning factor) of 8 out of 10 in its category

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Tech Specs

Frame

Size

Colour

Fork

BB Set

B-Lever

Front Brake

Rear Brake

Chain

Crank set

Front Derailleur

Rear Derailleur

Freewheel

Handle Bar

Handle Bar Stem

Head Set

Front Hub

Rear Hub

Pedal

Rim

Saddle

Seat Post

Front Shifter

Rear Shifter

Spoke

Tyres

Big 7 TFS BC

15-17-18.5-20-21.5″

Matt Black(Red/Grey)

Rock Shox FS 30STK27 SA 100

Shimano octalink

Attached

Shimano M355 180 cen

Shimano M355 160 cen

KMC X10

Shimano M523 octa 40-30-22

Shimano Deore triple

Shimano SLX Shadow

Shimano CS-HG50-10 11-36

MERIDA pro OS 680 R12

MERIDA Comp OS 6

BC OV Neck

Formula Centerlock

Formula Centerlock cassette

XC pro alloy

Merida Big 7 comp D

Merida Sport 5

MERIDA comp SB12 27.2

Shimano Deore

Shimano Deore

Black stainless

Maxxis Ikon 27.5 2.2 fold

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