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I think that a dedicated 26er forum is needed, because it is not just the wheel size that determines it's content anymore. It's the hubs, the forks, the gearing... There is bunch of bikes from 2000 - 2015 that aren't vintage yet, but may still need support and discussion about various issues and challenges. By removing that form MTBR is making sure that there is even less support for non-vintage 26er bike owners. For those reasons I think 26er forum should be reinstated, and be separate... at least for now.
 

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Unfortunately VRC and 26ers are tied to the hip. 26ers, vintage or otherwise, are not generally found on too many trails these days. I didn't even ride a mountain bike until I was in my 60's. I never developed the skills I could have if I started 30 years earlier; so I know my place on the food chain. At my age I'm not pushing the technical side and even on those trails I hardly see one. I'm usually the only one. But I do see them ridden around the neighborhood, or at the beach. I know there are some hardcore riders out there on 26ers but they are few are far between and I don't want to disparage them.

I guess I'm asking what a vintage mountain bike really is if it never sees dirt anymore. Is it really just show and tell?

The issues with 26er, vintage or otherwise, are really easy to to identify, everyone knows them.

Suspension is number 1. No one makes a 26" suspension fork with a 1-1/8" steerer, or 1" if you go back far enough.

"Good" rim brakes have become extinct. Along with that are rims, (at least lighter ones); and QR hubs.

Decent tires are getting tougher to find.

I don't have an answer on where to put VRC and 26ers, but I do know that the wheel size has already faded away regardless of the era. And I don't think the rest of the mountain biking world sees a difference or cares.

John
 

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I think that a dedicated 26er forum is needed, because it is not just the wheel size that determines it's content anymore. It's the hubs, the forks, the gearing... There is bunch of bikes from 2000 - 2015 that aren't vintage yet, but may still need support and discussion about various issues and challenges. By removing that form MTBR is making sure that there is even less support for non-vintage 26er bike owners. For those reasons I think 26er forum should be reinstated, and be separate... at least for now.
All of those questions have relevant subforums to cover them. There's no legitimate reason to separate bike forums based on wheel size.
 

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All of those questions have relevant subforums to cover them. There's no legitimate reason to separate bike forums based on wheel size.
I disagree, having discussion regarding 26er's in one spot is a lot easier than having to look through many different topics that may not be visited or commented on by 26er users. Besides, what harm is there in having a separate topic on 26ers?
 

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All of those questions have relevant subforums to cover them. There's no legitimate reason to separate bike forums based on wheel size.
Not really. You've been around here long enough and know the answers someone will get to those questions. It is pretty universal response... go buy a real mountain bike. And inevitably those threads spiral off into why any other wheel size is better than 26".

No one in the suspension forum can help someone get a good 1-1/8" rim brake suspension fork for a 26er. They will say if you find one don't waste your money.

Same with 26" rim brake rims. Anyone have a good source for 400gr 26er rim brake rims?

I don't have an answer other than one day it will be moot, may already be, and VRC will be a catch-all.

John
 

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Not really. You've been around here long enough and know the answers someone will get to those questions. It is pretty universal response... go buy a real mountain bike. And inevitably those threads spiral off into why any other wheel size is better than 26".

No one in the suspension forum can help someone get a good 1-1/8" rim brake suspension fork for a 26er. They will say if you find one don't waste your money.

Same with 26" rim brake rims. Anyone have a good source for 400gr 26er rim brake rims?

I don't have an answer other than one day it will be moot, may already be, and VRC will be a catch-all.

John
We've had discs for twenty years now. A rim brake fork is vintage. You can still buy 1-1/8th forks, you can have them custom made too. I think the wheel size shouldn't merit different forums. Realistically only four parts of the whole bike differentiate, rims, tyres, fork lowers and frame. I'm still riding a 26" as my everyday bike. When I bought it, it was the last 26" they made in that model, I didn't want to go 650B (what's the point) and wasn't ready for 29er at that stage. Now that hub standards have settled a little I'm ready to change.
That said, for vintage I'd draw a line in the sand at pre 2000. I've got one bike that's vintage then!
 

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We've had discs for twenty years now. A rim brake fork is vintage. You can still buy 1-1/8th forks, you can have them custom made too. I think the wheel size shouldn't merit different forums. Realistically only four parts of the whole bike differentiate, rims, tyres, fork lowers and frame. I'm still riding a 26" as my everyday bike. When I bought it, it was the last 26" they made in that model, I didn't want to go 650B (what's the point) and wasn't ready for 29er at that stage. Now that hub standards have settled a little I'm ready to change.
That said, for vintage I'd draw a line in the sand at pre 2000. I've got one bike that's vintage then!
Why 2000? It can't be just because then you can fit in.

I've thought 2001 was a pretty high point for years in 26ers. Mfg's offerings for good components to value was overall really good. Some will point to mid-2000's as some of the best 26ers made. Suspension was surely better in the 2000's than the 90's.

I haven't looked at later catalogs, but in early 2000's mfg's were still offering rim brakes. I can't say when in the 2000's discs were "fully" embraced by mfg's, at least for the mid/higher end bikes.

John
 

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I chose 2000 as it's fairly arbitrary, not so that I can fit it :). But my 99 has discs as well. I can't comment without bias as to the best bikes, the 2005 Enduro was probably a real game changer. A real bruiser that could be pedaled uphill. DH Lite. I bought one recently as I was a student when they came out and always wanted one. It's astonishing how well it rides.
 

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I chose 2000 as it's fairly arbitrary, not so that I can fit it :). But my 99 has discs as well. I can't comment without bias as to the best bikes, the 2005 Enduro was probably a real game changer. A real bruiser that could be pedaled uphill. DH Lite. I bought one recently as I was a student when they came out and always wanted one. It's astonishing how well it rides.
It's all good. I wasn't really making an accusation.

Congrats on getting that one bike you wanted from back in the day, so-to-speak. I'm glad it didn't disappoint.

No matter what it is, from cars to guitars, a lot of the vintage and collectible is generational; the "I always wanted..." stuff. As generations come and go, eras peak and subside. You got your 2005 Specialized and another person could care less and is lusting after an '85 Stumpjumper Team.

Somewhere both of those need to co-exist as neither one currently has any real value, other than what is driven driven by nostalgia. It is not like my old bike is better than your old bike; they are both just old bikes.

John
 

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Vintage and Collectibles belong here. I think the Retro in the forum name will make people post in there with their older bikes that are not necessarily collectible or vintage just old and since 26ers are now relics of a time past those will end up here because of the retro concept. I do suggest that this forum have retro removed from the name and just be called Vintage and Collectibles or something similar. A sticky should be added to the forum that indicates that new users shouldn't here just because they have an old bike but to instead find the forum that is relevant to their inquiry and noting how this forum is more for posting about the early days of mountain biking and about special and unique moments in mountain biking history, or something similar.
 

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The issue with collectibility will always be in the eye of the beholder.

At 69yo, I see nothing collectible about mid-80’s mtbs.

I would think most of those bikes are now just cool looking hybrids for MUPs and grocery getters.

To be honest back then I was just a roadie and that where I saw a lot of them.

John
 

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I do not think that this forum is the appropriate place for old POS bike discussion simply because they have 26" wheels or rim brakes, or are just old. I am really into classic cars. If you go to a classic car forum, no one wants to hear about your mint 1979 Chevette. Just because it is old, or has a carburetor, or drum brakes, or an 8 track player does not make it a classic. At the same time a 1990 Dodge Viper is a classic, even though it is much newer/modern. Its because it is a special car that is 30 years old.

In the same way, a 1990 Huffy is not VRC just because it has rim brakes and 26" wheels. Its just an old piece of junk. It was junk when it was new, so it doesn't become desirable now that its old. In my opinion any "special" bike that is 20 years old or older could be VRC. So that could mean any high end, low production number super bike, or it could mean a ground breaking regular production bike like the first generation Specialized Epic or Cannondale Scalpel (both of which are approaching 20 years old). The VRC forum just isn't the appropriate place for the guy looking for new wheels for his 1995 Trek 800. Its a place to appreciate awesome older bikes that helped define the sport and get help sourcing OEM parts.
 
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I agree with the above. I have no stakeholder interest in this forum. I've been a roadie most of my life, and don't post here often. There are others who have lived these bikes for decades. But I do ride my mtb's and they only see pavement after I've tweaked something or I'm riding to a trailhead. I know both my limitations and that the bikes have limitations over modern geometry larger wheel mtbs. I have to pick my lines and if I'm concerned about a section that most riders wouldn't be on larger wheels, I'm off the back of the saddle. But they are fun to ride. The wheelbase on my Serotta is so short I had to remove the knobs on my fork so they wouldn't hit the downtube when I've gone down and the wheels go 90*. The original spec bike was sub 40". I appreciate them by riding them.

As I said, I'm not a stakeholder and I don't have an answer for the size, vintage or otherwise. I know its existence as a viable wheel size lies in younger generations; and not just for 10/12 year olds as a stepping stone to 27.5/29.

And you're gonna get some questions on low end bikes, but that's just the nature of forums. At least someone is interested in using theirs, even if it is on a MUP.

I've said my piece.

John
 

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As one who has been on VRC from very early and doesn't show up that often, usually because of an email notification, if the conversation turns to general 26", I won't even bother coming for notifications. I think the others have said it very well already, so I'll just leave it at keep the VRC in VRC.
 

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runs finger over workbench and stares at dust

Love what you’ve done with the place /s

Merging would be the final nail
 

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Merging would be the final nail
Pretty well nailed already I think...

If I were named dictator, I'd choose:
  • Collectable MTB Chat (old VRC)
  • MTB Chat -- 10 years old or older
 

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There are plenty of FB groups picking up the slack for the different generations of 26" bikes. There's plenty of parts to be had too. Today I found Mavic ceramic 217 rims in NOS shape. Tires galore too. There's plenty of support out there.
 

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There are plenty of FB groups picking up the slack for the different generations of 26" bikes. There's plenty of parts to be had too. Today I found Mavic ceramic 217 rims in NOS shape. Tires galore too. There's plenty of support out there.
Yeah... sorry but I can't agree with you, I've been building my bikes since mid 90's and there is just nowhere near the choice and support for 26er today, that was there even 5 years ago. It's awesome you found 217 rims... but how about 717 rims - do you see a lot of them being available for sale? I think combining the 26er forum with the VRC just shows that MTBR is more focused on selling the new tech being offered for sale for big wheel bikes, than supporting the community of various riders. The industry is not focusing on 26ers any more and what's available out there for 26ers are just scraps.
 

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I'm amused that y'all are still whining about something that's not happening.

What actually should happen, though, is that you guys need to self-police some. If it's not vrc, then maybe you should report the thread so we could move it where it belongs. With the changes, I've been trying to be proactive about moving content to the places it should go. But it would be helpful if other forum users would point out some of these misplaced threads (almost always by new forum users) to make it a little easier on the mod staff. I'm not going to be this proactive in the future.

As an example, I just moved the cannondale rush year id thread into the FS bikes forum.
 
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