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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Howdy, I've been thinking about getting a 29er. My top 2 choices are the Kona Unit 2-9 and the On-One Inbred. There seems to be alot of Inbred fans here. The only 29er that I've ridden is a Karate Monkey but I'd like something a little lighter for racing so I'm wondering how these bikes compare as far as weight, ride quality, etc., or do I need to buck up for some custom steel? Any help would be appreciated.
 

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EricJames said:
Howdy, I've been thinking about getting a 29er. My top 2 choices are the Kona Unit 2-9 and the On-One Inbred. There seems to be alot of Inbred fans here. The only 29er that I've ridden is a Karate Monkey but I'd like something a little lighter for racing so I'm wondering how these bikes compare as far as weight, ride quality, etc., or do I need to buck up for some custom steel? Any help would be appreciated.
I myself just picked up an Inbred after about 4 months of research and riding 4 different 29ers offroad on the same trail (Dos Niner, Karate Monkey, Slingshot, and Niner single). While the Inbred was not one of the bikes I rode, I knew what I liked and what I wanted out of a 29er from that. I have to say ALL were great bikes. Surly as a whole is one of my favorite brands and I think highly of the guys working there. In the end, the inbred is a bit lighter, I like the dropouts better, and well while popular here it' s not found out in the "wild" very often. Plus I must say I do like white frames for some reason.

I'll probably go custom after this. Waltworks or Ground Up Designs. Or a Rabbit Cycles custom Ti (dream bike). Waltworks is priced right for a nice custom ride. If you have the cash, try him out.

-Jon
 

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Since juansevo mentioned custom...

Just wanted to throw it out there that a custom frame is not as $$$ as I thought. I had contacted Tom Teesdale, TET Cycles, and he can build a steel 29er hardtail for around $600 with powder coating. Not too shabby. It's nothing fancy tubing wise at that price (Columbus Thron level stuff), but you will get the geometry you want.
 

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I was thinking about the same frames recently. I had ordered a Monkey and installed the headset and bottom bracket then decided to stop my build and look at the Inbred.

There were some things about the Monkey that I felt like I didn't like once it was in my hands on my workstand. These points may not matter to others, but for me it was enough to make look at another frame:
  • Bent seat tube would not allow me to lower my seat in tech sections (16" frame)
  • I was inbetween sizes (16 & 18, chose 16) and I think neither would fit me well
  • Rear wheel removal involved too many steps(Monkey Nuts, loosening disc caliper)

So I put a halt to my Monkey build and started to look at the Inbred and Unit 2-9 because they were steel and within my price range.

I just ordered an Inbred because:
  • Straight seat tube for lowering saddle when I need it
  • Top tube on 18" Inbred is 23.6, better fit for me
  • Sliding vertical dropouts make wheel removal alot easier (I remove my wheel often for transport)
So the Inbred addressed the things that I didn't like about the Monkey. Again, just personal preferences. Many riders out there don't mind the things I mentioned.

So now I have an Inbred coming in the mail and a Monkey to sell (my non biking friends think I am crazy).
 

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I just recieved my 29'er Inbred and it is easy to see why people are favorable about it. It is really nice work for a fair price. If you look though many or the 29er's out there are are recieving nice reviews and making people happy. Maybe it is the 29er thing or maybe the people making them are just doing a good job, no reason to come up with new gimicks when the whole idea is new, just build a nice bike.
Whatever the reason, I would say find the bike that fits the details you are looking for and you will probably be fine. Besides, at $600 or $800 for a custom from why worry, as long as you know what you want you should be set.
 

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i heart singletrack
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i went with the Unit 2-9...

I ended up going with a Unit 2-9, and so far, it's been treating me right. I like the dropouts on the Inbred, and I have a friend that loves his Inbred, so I can't say that it's better/worse than the Kona, just different.

Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for the posts. I'm leaning toward the Inbred because of the versatility of the dropouts. I'm a single speeder and I don't see that changing, but it would be nice to be able to have that option down the road. I also like the matching fork.
But then again, that green Kona is pretty sweet looking too. Thanks for sharing the pic.
 

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i heart singletrack
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it does, but...

If they've done it right, that big bent plate chainstay bridge on the Kona will give awesome clearance.
i've got some good pics at home of the clearance on the kona, and you're right, there's tons of clearance... but the different isn't so much that i'd place more value on it (as a defining characteristic) than ride feel or durability. it's a nice addition, but as i recall, your frame has great clearance, but debaser's bike is the only one i've spent any significant eyeball time on.

relatedly, i just put one of my mary bars on the unit 2-9 last night. i suspect the steep head angle on that bike might play well with mary. you know how she likes to get aggressive...
 

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I'd have a hard time seriously considering a KM - for the pricepoint the Inbred seems like much more thought out ride. Cool little details, between gussets and wishbones and whatnot. After seeing more than a few Konas, those are darned cool too. That green is super pretty, it's lighter, but the sliding dropouts aren't as impressive (to me).

I'll include one more Inbred shot...
 

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Debaser said:
I'd have a hard time seriously considering a KM - for the pricepoint the Inbred seems like much more thought out ride. Cool little details, between gussets and wishbones and whatnot. After seeing more than a few Konas, those are darned cool too. That green is super pretty, it's lighter, but the sliding dropouts aren't as impressive (to me).

I'll include one more Inbred shot...
Absolutely stunning photo...... you should sell it to On One!

I will look closely at the Inbred.... Did you get it at Webcyclery?
 

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Endoverend! said:
Absolutely stunning photo...... you should sell it to On One!

I will look closely at the Inbred.... Did you get it at Webcyclery?
Thanks on the photo. Just another 12 degree day at the local skatepark. Thankfully it was empty so I wasn't mocked by any skater punks for my funny clothing while trying to stay warm...

I picked up the frame/fork/parts from Dave at Redstone, www.redstonecyclery.com. There's a few more pictures of my bike there just after it was built.
 

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mgersib said:
I ended up going with a Unit 2-9, and so far, it's been treating me right. I like the dropouts on the Inbred, and I have a friend that loves his Inbred, so I can't say that it's better/worse than the Kona, just different.

Good luck!
Sorry for the hi-jack, but what fork are you running? It looks like a Manitou?
 

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I saw this on Matt's site:

"What fork is that, you might be asking? It's a Manitou X-Vert super with a whopping 65mm of travel. Beyond Mod and a few others, it's a little-known secret that the X-Vert, though designed for 26-inch wheels, has (barely) enough clearance to run a 29er wheel with a 2.2 Bontrager Jones ACX tire. It'll do until I raise the dough to order a Reba..."
 

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sweet pic debaser...

i could have easily seen myself going with the inbred if i still lived out in CO with you guys debaser, but since nate stocks kona, 'ol greenie was the pc choice for me to make too.

debaser's comments about the inbred being a well-sorted ride are definitely true. from a details standpoint, the inbred is clearly an evolution of the "do-it-all" theme established by the km. the kona really can't compare in that regard unless you get the mech. hanger-equipped dropout chip from kona. it's my opinion that they should have included the hanger-type chip from the get-go... it has cable stops standard, so why no der hanger?

that said, that's about my only ***** with the kona. yeah, the welds aren't as pretty as the km or the inbred, but when i'm riding it, it feels great to me. where once i questioned the steep head tube angle, i'm now really digging it. funny what a couple of rides can do...

i'm also liking the mary bar with the steep head tube angle on the unit 2-9 as well. i've included a couple of "current set-up" images for your entertainment.

cheers,
mg
 

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I wish the Kona was offered in a geared version. I own a King Kikapu and have owned others and really enjoyed them. I am not fond of the dropout, but I guess it works well for singlespeeds.
 

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The sliding dropouts do work just well for gears. I ran gears without a hitch on my Kona Cowan hardtail with the same dropout plates. Kona provides the Cowan with both single speed plates and the geared der hanger plates. I was under the impression that the Unit 2-9 came with both, but that was just my assumption based on my Cowan.
 

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Agreed...

frankenbike said:
The sliding dropouts do work just well for gears. I ran gears without a hitch on my Kona Cowan hardtail with the same dropout plates. Kona provides the Cowan with both single speed plates and the geared der hanger plates. I was under the impression that the Unit 2-9 came with both, but that was just my assumption based on my Cowan.
I agree that the dropouts work fine for use with a derailleur (well, the hanger-equipped version at least). The only downside if you plan to run it as a geared bike is the substantial weight those dropouts (and the four bolts) add to the frame. There are certainly lighter ways to achieve dropout adjustability, and while I like the ease of adjustability of Kona's design, I think the design on the Inbred is an evolution beyond what Kona has done -- It's significantly better, IMHO.

It's weird... My '05 Explosif came with a mech-equipped dropout plate, but the 2-9 didn't (even though both frames have cable stops). At some point I'll buy the mech hanger-equipped plate, but it sucks to get nickel and dimed like that...
 
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