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I have 3 rides on my Superfly and I am a little concerned. I am coming off an epic that was set up for racing at 22lb. Currently the Superfly is 23 and I have a set of the Stans 29er race wheels that should be here Monday. My concern is that the bike feels very slow and clumsy. Wondering if there is such thing as a break in period for the bike and if it takes some time to get used to it and then fast. I race pro XC and think I may have made a mistake. Does anyone have a similar experience?
 

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Keep on Rockin...
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Takes time...

Not specific to the Fly.

I tested 29" bikes multiple times over the course of a year or so before they grew on me. The first few times I did not like them at all. After trying a few and then building on the way I thought would work for me I became a full believer. After getting use to the way a 29er felt I could not go back to a 26" bike. I know this may sound harsh but 26" bikes now feel downright silly to me with my 34.25" inseam. I feel like a circus clown on one.

This has nothing to do with which is faster, or which is better. Only that it took me quite some time to buy into the 29 thing.
 

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Yep, it definitely take a while. It definitely will feel a bit clumsier at first but you'll get used to it. What you have to remember is that you'll need to adjust to the fact that you can go faster through corners due to the increased traction and you can scratch your way up and down steeps with more traction. Your brain needs some time to adjust and you'll have to force yourself to use the 29er to your benefit and not try to ride it like a 26er. Try doing laps of your favorite singletrack or swoopy trails at increasing speeds but STAY OFF THE BRAKES! Of course you have to do this without crashing but this is a great way to train yourself to use the amount of traction that is now available to you.
 

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Birthday Collector
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My break-in period for 29'ers was somewhat mitigated by the fact that I was also on my first SS (and rigid too...). The extra work getting up the hills around here on SS sort of dampened the "Big wheels feel different" thing for me. But then I got back on my 26" FS gearie and WHOA!!!! This thing feels like a toy! I almost never ride my 26" bikes now. I'm not tall - 31" inseam at 5'9" and just love the feel of the 29" wheel. Only place it is really a bit of struggle to negotiate anything is really tight switchbacks. If I had lower gears I think that issue would be pretty moot too - as you can turn the bike in a bit harder. I'd say give it at least a dozen rides - you'll probably find after just a few more you will start to really like it.
 

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ems3564 said:
I have 3 rides on my Superfly and I am a little concerned. I am coming off an epic that was set up for racing at 22lb. Currently the Superfly is 23 and I have a set of the Stans 29er race wheels that should be here Monday. My concern is that the bike feels very slow and clumsy. Wondering if there is such thing as a break in period for the bike and if it takes some time to get used to it and then fast. I race pro XC and think I may have made a mistake. Does anyone have a similar experience?
My Paragon weighs 22.5lbs with heavier X9 shifters/RD/FD, incredibly heavy Deore cranks, and the stock, heavy Bontrager Race aluminum bars and post. My wheels are 1480g Stans/CX-Ray/AmC customs.

So, pretty much every part on my bike is heavier than yours. How does your bike weigh 22lbs? If I had the cash to buy a Fly, it would be <20lbs.

Also, what is your gearing setup? A standard 22/32/44 is going to be "off". The gear-inches are going to be completely different. JHK and Sam Schultz are running 26/38 x 11/34, if that tells you anything.
 

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Living the thug life.
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I have always said that it took me a couple of months to fully realize the potential of the 29'er.

My 6 month old daughter's facial features said she thought the gelato we first let her try was poisen. By the third taste (1 minute later) she was reaching for the spoon and couldn't get enough.

That is kinda what riding a 29er like for people.
 

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I felt like that about 29ers when I first started riding them. I was trying to ride it like a 26" bike and it just didn't feel either fast or racy. Go ride with some of your buddies who are on 26ers and stay behind them. This should show you some differences. I find that I do a lot less work to maintain the same speed as my 26" counterparts. I found that my 29er wasn't slow, it was just how I was perceiving it based on my exertion.
 

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Le Duke,

The stock Superfly weighs 23 lbs. Mine was just under without pedals and slightly over with the 4Ti Eggbeater pedals. Going to 1480g wheels (the stock Bonty Race X Lights are around 1745g) would save 1/2 lbs. So I have no idea how your bike weighs 22.5lbs. It just does not make any sense!
 

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serious said:
Le Duke,

The stock Superfly weighs 23 lbs. Mine was just under without pedals and slightly over with the 4Ti Eggbeater pedals. Going to 1480g wheels (the stock Bonty Race X Lights are around 1745g) would save 1/2 lbs. So I have no idea how your bike weighs 22.5lbs. It just does not make any sense!
Stock, my bike was 27lbs. I switched to grip shift from triggers, went tubeless on Jones XRs, and put a lighter/more comfortable seat on it. Trimmed 1.25" off each end of the bars, ditched the spacers, cut off the excess steerer and added new grips, clipped the housings to the appropriate length instead of one-size-fits-all, put on a new WCS stem of 100mm length instead of the stock Bonty 80mm. Swapped out the 22s-32a-44a for a 26s-36s set of rings; I might have actually gained weight there. Trimmed the chain to the appropriate length for the new gearing.

I didn't do anything I consider "weight weenie-ing" besides the wheels. Those alone, converted to tubeless and sporting some lighter rubber, saved me almost 3lbs. The stock Bontragers were north of 2kg if I remember correctly, the tubes were 210-220g a piece, and the tires were 700 and 710g each. New Alligator serrated rotors helped as well, but again, gotta have those to use disc brakes.

The other stuff was simply making the bike fit me better. The stem was a bit lighter, sure, but it's also one of the few available in +/- 17d, and the saddle was just a normal saddle I had laying around.

If I had a SuperFly, that bike would be sub-20 and still rock solid.
 

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serious said:
Le Duke,

The stock Superfly weighs 23 lbs. Mine was just under without pedals and slightly over with the 4Ti Eggbeater pedals. Going to 1480g wheels (the stock Bonty Race X Lights are around 1745g) would save 1/2 lbs. So I have no idea how your bike weighs 22.5lbs. It just does not make any sense!
+1 on this. I've built bikes up with much lighter parts than you list on your Paragon and it was still above 23.5 with pedals. Might want to check your scale.
 

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I thought it was going to say 3 rides on my Superfly, and it cracked. Do not worry, you should get use to it, by the time it breaks. J/K, enjoy your new ride.
 

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Le Duke: If I had a SuperFly, that bike would be sub-20 and still rock solid.

I do not doubt that at all. We have seen a few guys on this forum who brought their Superflys to sub-20 lbs. One of them is Patriot222. Search for him and his beautiful Superfly pics. Very nice stuff. :)
 

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I also made the switch from an Epic to a HT 29er (Specialized Marathon).

The Marathon is still a little heavy at 24 lbs, but I really loved the way the bike rode over technical sections on my first ride w/ the new bike last week. I was able to roll over sections that normally gave me problems in the past. Also, climbing felt so much better w/ the HT. I could really tell the difference in the stiffness and power transfer. I never really liked the feeling of climbing w/ FS bikes.

The contact patch also felt much better. A buddy of mine that normally rides technical sections better than me was dabbing in sections where I just kept rolling along...he was riding his 26er FS and hating it.

And being 6'5", the fit of the 29er was reason enough to make the switch...after 1 ride on my 29er, I don't think I could go back to a 26er again...thanks to Mattomoto for the advice.
 

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As well as going from 26" to 29" you've gone from "Standard" geometry to Genesis G2 geometry.

The ride of a GF is different to most bikes out there.
 

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scott_co said:
I also made the switch from an Epic to a HT 29er (Specialized Marathon).

The Marathon is still a little heavy at 24 lbs, but I really loved the way the bike rode over technical sections on my first ride w/ the new bike last week. I was able to roll over sections that normally gave me problems in the past. Also, climbing felt so much better w/ the HT. I could really tell the difference in the stiffness and power transfer. I never really liked the feeling of climbing w/ FS bikes.

The contact patch also felt much better. A buddy of mine that normally rides technical sections better than me was dabbing in sections where I just kept rolling along...he was riding his 26er FS and hating it.

And being 6'5", the fit of the 29er was reason enough to make the switch...after 1 ride on my 29er, I don't think I could go back to a 26er again...thanks to Mattomoto for the advice.
Is that a Noir double? can you take some close ups of that crank, looks sweet!
 

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I rode my RIG on 4 rides, last one being 30 miles. Rode my FS 26er this week and did not enjoy the ride. I constantly kept losing the front and like mentioned above climbing was noticeable without the hardtail. Obstacles became an issue again, they just became noticeable LOL. The only thing that I would change on the RIG would be to add a 1x9 set up, but that may be because I dont have the strength to push the SS like I want to.

 

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Here's the close up of the way I set up the Noir cranks using Blackspire rings (26x38).

I used the inner and middle ring for setting up the chain rings and the shifting was spot on.
Only issue I have is that the Blackspire rings are a little heavier than I would like, but not a big deal.
 

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I would really closely measure your position on the bike. If you are too far behind the BB it will make you feel slow. A little short time to adapt but work a little with your settings. And, you might feel slow, but go just as fast or faster. Check.
 

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I went from Stans Arch with WTB Prowlers tires to Stans 29 Race rim with Raven tires and dropped 2 whole lbs so your bike will probably be lighter once you chance the wheels. Give the 29er more time… your brain needs to adjust!
 
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