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Ianmcg

Rockman Slate 3/Echo Zoo

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Hey guys, I'm new here. I used to ride trials way back when (20+ years ago!) and I'm looking to get back on a bike again. I've been shopping some used listings in my area and there are a couple I'm looking closely at and may pull the trigger on one of them. One is a Rockman Slate 3 and the other is an Echo Zoo! I'm prepared to need to upgrade a few parts here and there or change out a couple things for fit and preference (pedals, stem, bar, etc.). I'm mostly looking for some advice/opinion on these two frames. I don't know much about them and I'm not finding an awful lot of info online, especially about the Rockman. It seems like you can't really go wrong with Echo - they've been around a long time and are still producing and selling a lot of frames. I've heard that the Rockman frames can be a little delicate and maybe not as solid and durable as something from Echo might be. The Rockman in this case looks like it's in practically new condition, whereas the Echo looks a little more beat up with a couple more dents and dings. They're priced accordingly though, with the Rockman being a little more money. The rest of the build on them is pretty comparable for drivetrain, wheels, brakes, etc. If anybody has some first hand experience with either of these and can help me compare the two, that would be huge.

Thanks

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Right, can you provide some pictures? there's no such thing as an Echo Zoo! although they are both the same company. Rockman are inherently weak, although I have seen some frames still going now and taking a battering.

Echo and Zoo strength varies massively by year ( pre and post 2009/10 ).

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Thanks Alex,

That’s along the lines of what I’ve gathered so far as well. “Echo Zoo” is just how it was listed in the ad. That’s good to know on the correct naming, though - Thanks. I do understand that they’re made by the same company. I’m not sure in the year of the Zoo. This seller is the second owner. 

Here’s a link to the ad:

https://m.pinkbike.com/buysell/2923972/

And here’s the Rockman:

https://m.pinkbike.com/buysell/3077410/

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Theyre both fairly similar specc'd. Strength wise I'd probably choose the Zoo myself.

The Zoo, i think, is a 2012 pitbull. https://www.webcyclery.com/product/zoo-26-frame-1772.htm

Geometry is pretty good for a beginner up to expert although not the most up to date. Would be suitable for an average to tall guy.

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If you go for the RockMan, please change that half-link chain immediately. To be fair you should probably do that on the Zoo too, but half-link chains are not ideal on a trials bike.

The bar/stem on the RockMan also looks pretty random. It's fairly short and low for a frame with that geo.

Out of the two, I'd probably go for the Zoo just because it seems decent overall, but is also a good amount cheaper. Second hand bikes quite often turn into moneypits as you find bits and pieces on them that could do with being changed, so having an extra $500 would be useful. The Zoo bikes are decent as well in fairness. The only 'problem' with them is that they use a somewhat proprietary BB setup, so you'd have to get either the Echo or Trialtech Spanish BB for it if you need a new BB at any point. That's not the end of the world, but it does mean further down the road spares might be trickier to get hold of.

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Thanks for the input guys, I appreciate the advice. I was leaning the same way, for some of  the same reasons you both mentioned. The Zoo seems like a little better value and it’s also closer to home and I won’t need to get it shipped. Yes, I was definitely planning to change out the chain right off the bat, and possibly the handlebar and pedals, too. The seller isn’t the first owner so the history is a little more unknown so I figure it might be prudent to swap those out with fresh new parts. 
 

Saving some money on the bike up front will definitely help with a few tweaks and upgrades as needed. With any luck, I’ll pick this up this weekend. The seller is about three hours away from me but willing to meet up about half way. I’m trying to set that up for this weekend. 
 

Next I’ll have to see what I still remember how to do on a bike and what my 40 year old limbs can handle!

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