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I'm currently in the process of buying a new bike. I'm 6' 3", 225 lb. I have a Hoo Koo E Koo on backorder but I'm seriously contemplating on switching it to an X-Caliber. This is going to be a replacement for my FS Voodoo Canzo AL. Here are a few of my concerns:

1. It won't climb as well (which is why I'm replacing the Voodoo)
2. It won't handle as responsively in technical sections

Most of my concerns are totally unfounded cause it's only what I've read and heard from the local bike shop. On the other hand they have a customer that has a 29er that loves it. I'm not going to race it. I ride about 3 times a week (twice to work and once on hilly trails). This will also be my primary ride cause my wife is going to make me sell the Voodoo. I'm a little concerned about how rough the HKEK will ride on the trials.

My thought was that the 29er would give me a smoother more comfortable ride (which would be a suitable replacement for the full suspension). Plus it will be exciting to ride something different. The hardest part of this decision is I can't ride the X-Caliber cause nobody has one in stock. Ugh!
 

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I believe that my 29" is one of the best climbing bikes I have ever owned. (I am riding the GF Paragon) I love how the bike feels out of the saddle.

It handles great, point it and go. There is one really rocky ride that I have never been able to "clean" until I rode my 29er there. It is great because they keep rolling. It is my favorite bike I have ever owned.

I don’t think that the 29" wheels replace the full suspension, but they are a great way to save the weight necessary for a full suspension bike.
 

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I have an 06 HKEK, great bike...
but I also have a 06 Redline Monocog 29er.
HKEK, just sits there.
I would strongly recomend testing out a 29er before dropping the grand on the HKEK, I definitely wish i had. I guess I have a spare bike for friends that come to town and want to ride, or if the Monocog is in need of repair.
 

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My LBS

I'm 6' 3", 225 lb

Hello fellow clyde.:thumbsup: Don't think twice about the big wheels.

My LBS (In So Cal) has a Paragon marked down. Not sure if it is a 19 or 21.

pm me if you want their contact info.

Good luck with the search!
 

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You dont want a 29er! They are just a fad! They are slow to accelerate, clumsy on tight single track and downright clumsy! I got 1 and Im only about %5 faster as a result. Waste a $. :)
 

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...6-3" and 185lbs.....15 years of racing 26" wheeled bikes and the 29er I got 6 months ago has made me fall in love with MTbing all over again.

I think short riders can benifit as well BUT if you are over 6' IMHO you should be on a 29er...

Enjoy shoping. Take your time and do heaps of "searches" on this forum, as the info is worth a million $.

C in Wellington, NZ
 

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I own a '97 VooDoo Canzo Esp. It's geometry I though was "quick", now I regard it overly nervous. I haven't ridden the bike in many years, despite it being near-ready to roll.
And I even even needed a 130-140mm stem on the VooDoo to get a good fit. Man did I endo that bike a lot. The Fisher is a totally different feeling monster, but in a very refreshing way. I swapped to hardtail VooDoo's in 2000 after I tried my friend's (never ridden a proper fitting hardtail before that, and was awed). The swap to the Fisher was like coming home, to a land where bikes actually favor my body style (big) or off-road riding where before I was loving the despite it hating me.

Open a thread asking for an XL 29" ride somewhere in your state. The regulation price is a 6-pack of local brew. 29" riders tend to be open to sharing their ride with future converts, so take advantage of that. After a good ride comparing it to your present bike, you'll know much better what to do with your bike budget.

Good luck!

J
 

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CrankyMonkey said:
Fisher told my LBS that they won't have any til late July to mid August! WTF! I guess they don't want my money!
Supply and demand issues and the 2007's are just coming out.

Are you sold on only owning a Fisher? Have you paid your local Fisher dealer a deposit for ordering your Hoo Koo?

If not, or if you can get your deposit back - there are other excellent bikes/frames out there available that would fit you well from Salsa, Niner, Kona, Ventana, etc... .

1. It won't climb as well (which is why I'm replacing the Voodoo)
2. It won't handle as responsively in technical sections


Being the same height as you, I can say that my experience would suugest your 2 concerns shouldn't be a worry.. I found an improvement in both 1. and 2. by moving to the 29"er platform.

Have you thrown a leg over any 29"er to test? The loaner thread in the FAQ ought to point you to someone in or near your location who might be able to provide you with a test ride.

BB
 

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I had a '04 HKEK, and replaced it with a '05 Paragon last year. The difference is night and day. Cancel the HKEK order immediately, if you can. The big wheels make riding a hardtail MUCH more fun, and my 29er is a far better climber and descender than the HKEK...
 

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29ers are only a revolution in the mind of the revolutionaries. To everyone else we're just weirdos.

Climbing well may be more of a function of your weight than the bike. Do some leg presses and build up your muscles to compensate. I will say my 29er doesn't require me to shift my weight around when climbing like a 26 does because of the longer chainstays.

Most people consider an specialized epic to be a singletrack rocket with great handling ability to rail tight corners. My waltworks 29er wheelbase is 1" shorter than the wheelbase was on my sworks epic. Maybe the epic is a slow pig in the woods?
 

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There are a lot of options other than Fisher - if you can cancel that HKEK order and ask more questions here.

My bike prior to my Karate Monkey was a Surly Instigator and it climbed well, but I think I can climb better, especially in loose and rocky terrain, on the Surly Karate Monkey. My KM feels just as quick handling as any 26er I've been on, except for a Ted Wojcik soft trac full squish bike I rode last season. I'm currently riding my KM rigid and I really like how the bike steers with the rigid fork up front. I'm also enjoying the absence of any fork "dive" out on the trail when going up and over log piles, and step ups etc. etc.

Give it some more time, ask more questions - it'll be worth it to do so in my opinion.
 

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don't disregard the rig

i've never been a big fan of gary fisher bikes for some reason. nothing in particular, they just always seemed cheesy to me. but this spring i bought a gf rig (29er ss) from my lbs. i love it. and it's cheap, well relative to any other bike i own. it's a great way to try out ss and 29er at the same time. hope that helps.
 

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Jacob 34:19
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I'm not quite as tall as you (6' 2") but I tried a 29'er specifically to get a better fit. It did take a little getting used to but I'm really glad I did. I wouldn't go back now if I could.

Like mward, I also had a Specy Epic and loved it. Great bike. I sold it after a couple months on my Niner and really don't miss it. I think my Niner handles every bit as good. But like I said, it did take some getting used to.

As for climbing, it's tough to compare since the Epic was geared and my Niner is a rigid SS. I find it easier to clear tough climbs on the Niner but being SS, it's a different technique. I attack climbs instead of spinning. I don't' know if the bigger hoops are helping but they certainly don't hurt and the extra traction is fantastic.

Bottom line is, I don't know that 29'ers are for everyone but at your height it's probably worth a look. It's definitely worked for me.
 

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CrankyMonkey said:
I'm currently in the process of buying a new bike. I'm 6' 3", 225 lb. I have a Hoo Koo E Koo on backorder but I'm seriously contemplating on switching it to an X-Caliber. This is going to be a replacement for my FS Voodoo Canzo AL. Here are a few of my concerns:

1. It won't climb as well (which is why I'm replacing the Voodoo)
2. It won't handle as responsively in technical sections

Most of my concerns are totally unfounded cause it's only what I've read and heard from the local bike shop. On the other hand they have a customer that has a 29er that loves it. I'm not going to race it. I ride about 3 times a week (twice to work and once on hilly trails). This will also be my primary ride cause my wife is going to make me sell the Voodoo. I'm a little concerned about how rough the HKEK will ride on the trials.

My thought was that the 29er would give me a smoother more comfortable ride (which would be a suitable replacement for the full suspension). Plus it will be exciting to ride something different. The hardest part of this decision is I can't ride the X-Caliber cause nobody has one in stock. Ugh!
I went from a f800 Cannondale headshock hardtail to a GF X-Cal this year and I'm actually excited about riding again!! My riding sounds alot like yours - 3-4 times a week, maybe once per week on trails. I'm shocked how much better this bike is on roads\paved trails compared to the 26 inch cannondale. While it took a couple rides to get used to a higher standover, it really hasn't effected me at all and now my bike seems like a part of me. You will notice a big difference on cushion and I went one further by adding a Nitro post to mine...wow! Not the lightest bike but I'm not a light rider either at 6 ft, 240.

The place I bought my X-Cal a month or two ago had a few more 06 x-cal's in stock, here in MN. Give Penn Cycle a call in Minnetonka and see if they have your size in stock and would be willing to ship. GREAT lbs and very helpful - 952-593-5030 - ask for Allen Roath, the store manager. Great dude!!!!

One more thing - the metallic sparkle orange paint has gotten me lots of looks\compliments! Nice looking bike with good paint job and minimal cheesy decals...
 
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