Niner Bikes AIR 9 Carbon 29er Hardtail

Available At

DESCRIPTION

Reach for the stars with the Air 9 Carbon. All the advantages of the Air 9 family at a down to earth price.

The new AIR 9 Carbon benefits from the same decade of refinement and testing as does the Air 9 RDO, while fitting into a privateer friendly budget. Riders benefit from the same experience with only a small difference in weight.

The AIR 9 CARBON features the same sleek carbon frame design as the Air 9 RDO with a slightly simpler layup and material choice. Riders benefit from 10 years of hardtail development, engineering, process improvement and testing at a privateer friendly budget. In this newest version, you’ll find increased strength and durability along with the addition of a rear maxle for better descending and cornering.

USER REVIEWS

Showing 1-10 of 18  
[Aug 30, 2015]
Paulus
Weekend Warrior

OVERALL
RATING
2
VALUE
RATING
1
Strength:

Stiff frame, perfect geometry for climbing and handling

Weakness:

finishing, cabling, protection plates, chainsuck

I bought this bike after testing it for a weekend, it climbed very well and the handling was pretty sharp for a 29er. So far the good part. After riding it for only a week the chain got stuck several times between the granny and the frame which ended up in frame damage. After checking with the LBS it seemed that the protection plate on the frame got loose and damaged the frame. Also the rubbers at the place where the cables come out of the frame disappeared. For a frame withe a Retail price of 1699€ this is unacceptable. After riding it for 3 months , the bike is not complete yet, I 'm still waiting for the stem and the handle bar; perhaps that's a good thing when the qualtiy will be the same..

[May 01, 2014]
Gift Shop Boys
Cross Country Rider

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

super light; fast; nice Moondust color

Weakness:

Feels "plasticy".. but thats upgrading from an aluminum.

Any upgrade where you double your previous bike's price is always positive.. my first carbon, and its a blast so far.. its badass looking.. you're looked at as a badass.. and the bike performs more badass.. after riding this for 2 weeks, I dont even want to get back onto my old X-cal..

I bought the parts myself and had it built up.. hence the cheaper price.. I saved about $500 so I can't complain. Frame was a brand new 2013 leftover.. Haven't weighed the bike yet, but I can't imagine it being more than 25lbs.

with my current setup, I noticed I'm putting less effort climbing.. I'm taking turns sharper.. and it improved myself as a rider already

Similar Products Used:

2008 to Feb 2011: Trek 4300
Feb 2011 to Sept 2011: Trek Marlin
Sept 2011 to April 2014: Trek X-cal

[Sep 18, 2013]
Matthew Glagola
Cross Country Rider

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
4
Strength:

Fast as snot, stiff, quiet, comfy, good looking

Weakness:

I'm sad when it gets scratched

To all those who say the EBB is a problem, you simply have an install issue. Mine is rock solid and completely quiet. You simply have to set it up correctly. Also the 2nd version of the cups is a much better design than the firs tone. Use teflon pipe past on the cups but don't let it get on the surface of the flange or the side of the frame where they make contact. If you keep that part clean, you'll have creak free, solid performance.

I love this bike.

[Nov 18, 2012]
Mike Zajec
All Mountain Rider

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

Fun, Fast, and makes me Smile every ride.

Weakness:

It looks so sleek with the internal routed cables and color scheme, that you should always keep it clean and shiny.

I've been riding mountain bikes for over 25 years, if you count Beach Cruisers. First real mountain bike was rigid Klien and w hen dual suspension bikes started catching on, I rode an an early Heckler with the coil over shock (Absolutely Killer), i later moved on to a Ibis Mojo (Completely Rocks). This July I went for a completly new add to the quiver and dove into this Niner Air Carbon. I'm 6'4" 240. I liked the look and the feel when I threw a leg over one. MadCat Bikes in Sac built it up for me, they did a terrific job. Initially I was a little concerned going from a terrific DS to a hardtail. I talked to fellow riders and got some input and ultimately felt that this was the way to go when it comes to 29ers.

I ride mostly trails in Auburn, Santa Cruz, and Marin. This bike surprised me and exceeded my expectations on all fronts: Climbs and Accelerates like a V2 Rocket!, Tracks Lines and Handles the corners amazingly. When dealing with tight switch backs there was some sacrifice with the bigger hoops initially, mostly a result of me making the transition to a 29er. This bike just goes over obstacles with ease. I have a few training loops in the Auburn area and on my normal high pace 1hr 15min ride, I smoked it by 9 min. And this ride has a great variety of climbing, descending and tech.

This bike is the Mega Bomb! Fun, Fast, and a Joy to ride.

Thanks Niner Team!

[Jul 12, 2012]
JC

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

FAST!!! I mean really, really fast. Fast enough to make a middle aged wannabe racer think he is fast... The geometry is impressive -- it really makes you forget all the supposed negatives of a 29er. Great acceleration, nimble, and a pretty darn steady descender. Did I mention it was fast?

Weakness:

CYA bottom bracket -- although a great idea, it creaks like an old pick-up truck. The internal cable routing is a pain, although I do like the look of it when it is done.

I am pretty much going to affirm what everybody has been saying about this frame. It is a fast, mile-munching, hill-climbing beast. My experience with other fast frames have been more incremental... but the possible speed on this frame is instantly noticeable.

The frame is stiff, and you will want to pick your parts carefully to make sure you aren't going to beat up your back/shoulders... (I fitted mine with a Niner RDO seat post, which is supposed to give you lots of flex, and it definitely does soften things up a bit.) That said, it is not too stiff, although I can't imagine running it with a rigid fork around my parts in SoCal (loose over hard, rocks, and rocks).

I run a Fox F29 100mm fork on it, and I have to say the geometry is superb for the xc racing or fast trail-riding. And I simply love the overall feel of this frame.

I am running my A9C geared, and I built it up myself, which means I had to deal with the pain-in-the-* internal cable set-up. But if you are patient, it will get done, and you will have a very clean look... Although I am not looking forward to servicing the cables... Luckily, since in SoCal things are pretty dry, we don't have to deal with it too often. (I have zero shifting issues. I do suggest you "cross" the cables when you have them enter the name badge.)

Beautiful finish, aesthetically a home run. (I have the 'tang' orange. It is really, really orange in person.)

By far the worst part of this magnificent frame -- is the hit-or-miss bottom bracket. CYA does offer you lots of options, but options are really over-rated... I am guessing it is a vocal minority, but still a lot of us have issues with creaky bottom bracket. You just don't want to get too clever with a sensitive area like the BB...

That being said... I love this frame, from the unique, unmistakable look to the rocket-propulsion speed.

[May 15, 2012]
Al

OVERALL
RATING
2
VALUE
RATING
3
Strength:

feels solid under you, absorbs more that my scandium frame.

Weakness:

for an expensive and state of the art frame, the EBB sucks. The eccentric BB cups press fit into the bottom braket as you tighten the bolt. Per the instructions to adjust , they recommend unscrew the bolt then put a screw driver into bbc hole and use the cranks as leverage to turn the eccentric bb. If your cups get stuck from the slight press fit, you can't adjust your chain tension.

Lame design for such an expensive frame.

I would have rated this a 5 but the eccentric bb is a crappy design. Before you but this frame, try to get ahold of a frame with this eccentric bb and try to adjust it. You will see that its a PAIN>

[May 10, 2012]
reesrider
Racer

OVERALL
RATING
3
VALUE
RATING
3
Strength:

Climbs like a goat. Point and shoot

Weakness:

EBB creaks like crazy. I fix it and it goes away for 1 ride and os back the next ride. If the chain comes loose out on the trail, it is next to impossible to fix it without bottom bracket tool and a big enough allen wrech to put the crank off.

Super fun and super fast bike When the ebb works it works but most of the time it sucks

Similar Products Used:

Raleigh xxix, niner one 9

[Apr 11, 2012]
Goochie
Cross Country Rider

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
4
Strength:

Super light build can be achieved and very fast climber set up as a 29" MTB hard tail or as a slightly weird looking cross bike.

Weakness:

EBB noise comes and goes but not enough to be more than a mild annoyance at the start of a ride and usually fades into the background after 10 minutes. EBB shell adjustment when I am running SS is a bit of a pain and doesn't seem to be able to be adjusted without taking out the whole shell most of the time but sometimes I get lucky and can rotate with just loosening the locking bolt. Not a big fan of the internal cable routing as swap between single and 10 speed rear quite frequently and using the internal routing is too much of a faff for this.

First off this is by far and a way the best mountain bike and possibly the best cycle I have ever owned but it is not perfect and has some definite areas for improvement. I have had this bike for 6 months after a rather long wait (9 months) but the wait was definitely worth it. I ride it every morning on 15 mile off road smooth ish trail loop with a couple of 500 meter climbs and it is so fast I am still amazed at how much time I have taken off my old PB.

I have built up the bike to either be ridden as a SS cross (see spec below) which is how I ride it in the week or as a front suspension cross country weekend fun and occasional race machine.

In SS Cross dress this is a very capable cross machine, stiff fast to climb but also able to decent with some pace despite the smaller tyres and the disk brakes allow much later braking than friends on rim brake cross machines.

In proper 29" dress this bike really comes to life, still stiff but with enough feel to know what the bike is doing and darn is it fast up a hill, most of my friends are on full sus 120mm travel bikes and I just leave them for dead on any incline. Even the odd mates on hard tails are left in a could of dust. But it is not just uphill this bike excels, I am also easily able to keep with with the same full sus friends on any decent and unless it is a really rock section, put some space between us most of the time.

There are some issues with the bike though, as other have noted the EBB shell can be noisy and you do need to tweak it to get ride of this but it will usually come back again so definitely not set and forget. It is also not the easiest shell to adjust and quite often needs to be fully removed to adjust. If like me you swap quite frequently between SS and Geared you will find using the internal cable routing a real pain so I put some stick on cable tie guides on the underside of the down tube and inside of rear chain stay so as not to take away from the bikes clean looks. I do really like the external guides for the rear and front brake as it makes changing brake set-up and cables between configurations a 2 min job.

Ordering enough parts to have two different rides was not cheap and probably no cheaper than buying two bikes but it does mean I use the bike every day and so don't feel quite so guilty about the expense.

Similar Products Used:

First 29" but previously owned, FSR XC M4 Full Sus, Kona AA Front Sus, Ti Mtrax Rigid, Killi Flyer Comp Rigid

[Feb 08, 2012]
glagola1
Cross Country Rider

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
4
Strength:

Fast, fast, fast.... Puts down the power. Light. Looks great. Stiff. Compliant where it needs to be. Perfect fit for 5'-10". Configures as SS or geared. Internal cable routing means no cable stops.

Weakness:

None yet.

Is it possible to make carbon fiber babies? I hope not. The bike rips. I have been riding an Anthem Advanced for the last few years and this bike is so much more responsive and fast. It has actually made me faster.... just by getting on it. I highly recommend it. The EBB has been rock solid.

Similar Products Used:

I haven't owned a rigid SS 29er before so...

[Feb 06, 2012]
deeppow
Cross Country Rider

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
4
Strength:

Great Geometry, nice and stiff at the bottom bracket.

Weakness:

EBB creaks, can be mitgated by bandaid fixes

This is a great frame. It is nice and stiff latterally and has some compliance in the rear. It is a climinb machine and decends as well as many 26" FS bikes. I love the way Niner hardtails handle if only they could get the EBB issues resolved. For this kind of money you should not have to perform afternmarket fixes to quiet the bike. Once I get the creaking EBB silenced I am afraid to change gearing out of fear that the noises will come back. Niner, please go to sliding dropouts!

The frame is pricy but it is comparable to other carbon hardtails. I would give 5 stores except for the EBB issues.

Similar Products Used:

Niner One 9, Gary Fisher Superfly 100

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