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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I saw this thread a while back and figured I'd experiment with the idea myself. Using the wheels from my Rig and my dad's Surly 1x1 I was all set.

The frame was a size big to start, and the big wheels only amplified the standover issue. With the exception of standover, the set up show is pretty close in size (reach) to my own bikes, using a slightly shorter stem to account for the longer top tube..

I ran a 36/22 gearing because it's what I could get to work easily with what I had. It gave me a similar ratio to my normal 32/18. The tires are pretty big, Bontrager Jones XDX, which made for super tight clearance. On the one and only off road test I just hoped no rocks would get stuck and that I wouldn't have any unplanned dismounts.

Overall the bike handled way better than I expected. I was expecting some sort of wheel flop or heavy feeling, but didn't experience anything of the sort. The slow speed handling was even snappier than my Rig, but still stable at speed (I hit 30 bombing down some Traill 100 doubletrack). The steel frame and fork was noticeably smoother than the aluminum/carbon set up on the Rig

The only thing that would keep me from running this set up off road is tire clearance. I'd have to get a a slightly taller fork and find a ratio that let me run the wheel back a bit, or get a half link with this ratio. With the big wheels I could use only the last 1/3 of the trackends, which equated to less than a full link. Overall the bike handled well enough that I'd consider it a viable 29er option if I could work out a little more clearance.

Here it is:


Toe overlap with 180 cranks and size 43 shoe:


Fork clearance, yikes!


And seat and chainstay clearances:


 

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Witty McWitterson
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In my experience, the 1x1 is a better fit to 650b wheels than it is 29". Of course you see that it works w/29", but its tight. I don't mind high BB's myself, but I think the 1x1/29" combo puts the bb up there a bit much.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
~martini~ said:
In my experience, the 1x1 is a better fit to 650b wheels than it is 29". Of course you see that it works w/29", but its tight. I don't mind high BB's myself, but I think the 1x1/29" combo puts the bb up there a bit much.
I agree. I think the 650b would be a better option. I might experiment with that in the future on both this bike and a Bianchi DISS.

I was expecting to really notice the high bb, but it wasn't as bad as I thought. If I really spent a lot of time off road on this bike I might start to notice it more.

My dad liked it enough to keep the big wheels, but he has no real plans of riding it off road. It'll likely stay set up as a 29er around town bike.
 

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Wish I could do that with my 26" Rocky Mtn. Blizzard. With the Salsa Cromoto fork, I've got way more clearance than you do with your 1x1's fork, but with the rear wheel, it's no go. It's interesting, 'cause the Karate Monkey is famous for its short chainstays, but I guess they left it (relatively) long on the 1x1 'cause they knew people were doing this? Anyway, very interesting thread. I'd ride it, built thusly...:).
 

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Recovering couch patato
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Sure, 650B would fit better, but then, it's barely larger than 26", one louzy Inch.

The BB height thing would be an opportunity for tall rider, to fit proportionately long cranks. Tall riders are also less likely to be affected by Surly's "classical" tall top tube placement.
 
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