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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
im use to bmx all my life, friends and i all getting older and switching to MTB. problem is im 5'2. sitting on different size mtb the only thing that feels good is a xxs bike with 26 in tires. im told i should ride a small with 27.5 though. just feels big and as if i wont be able to whip it around. thoughts?
 

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RAKC
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Can't compare to BMX. You can wip anything around. Watch vids, see guys on large/xl bikes with 29+ tires doing all kinds of crazy stuff no problem.

BUT DO NOT PICK A BIKE because of what your told. Go to or pay to demo some bikes. At your size xs may be in order. But a different bike may feel better in a small.

Go ride and do some miles, especially to see how your body feels with the cockpit set up for each size.

Final thing, getting mountain bike remember it's NOT A BMX, it won't take that kind of abuse. My understanding is the in between is called dirt jump. Bigger than BMX but with suspension forks but built to take more abuse than most mountain bikes.

Again. GO DEMO BIKES, RIDE ALL YOU CAN then decide what you want for a bike and a size. Don't get stuck on wheel size or anything else beyond what you like.

Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
like should a mtb feel big or should I feel big enough on it to throw it around?
I rode a few, like a said the xxs and the youths mtb felt best. but im worried the smaller they are the less stable/safe they are and or may break.
 

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Tire size has nothing to do with how a bike fits, although bigger wheels + big tires make it hard to design a bike for a shorter rider. Your height and BMX background might make 27.5 wheels more natural to you if "whipping the bike around" is what you want to do. Many people want a bike that feels stable and planted, which a 29er would theoretically do better. Some people want that. It depends on the kind of trails you ride and how you plan to ride them.

Modern mountain bikes with 26" wheels are almost non-existent except for bike that are designed for dirt jumping and BMX type stuff, so of you want a bike for rocky, rugged mtb trails, just drop the 26er idea.

As a former BMX rider, I can tell you that you need to forget everything you know about how a bike fits. I made that mistake for years, wasting thousands of dollars on bikes that were too small for me. I am 5'9" and buying small bikes, hurting my back, and I should have been on a medium frame the whole time.
 

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Now go ride a XXS for 40 miles of rooty, chunky singletrack. Not the same as bumbling around the parking lot. Mountain biking is generally not about doing tricks but being about to sit and pedal for hours on end, or stay upright as the trail under beats the daylights out of your bike.

Find a bike demo day, or find a local with a small/ extra small 27.5 bike and go ride at least 10 miles. It's a totally different experience.

What 26 inch bikes did you find? Those are rare indeed except for dirt jumpers, beach cruisers, and very, very low end bunny bikes.
 

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Small or xs 27.5 because for better or worse 26" is somewhat dead. It ain't bmx so "whipping" will be somewhat reduced comparatively. Still great fun though. Maybe check out a demo or rental for a day.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
pretty much any xxs frame has 26 in tires max.
I use to ride my bmx around for miles lol. hell all day really. I know its not the same. I just felt like the bigger mtb I couldn't even pull the front up barely, worried I wont be able to jump over small stuff etc given my small arms and height.
 

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I use to ride my bmx around for miles lol. hell all day really. I know its not the same. I just felt like the bigger mtb I couldn't even pull the front up barely, worried I wont be able to jump over small stuff etc given my small arms and height.
Like I said, mountain biking is not the same as bmx. most mountain bikes are made to be comfortable and stable over long miles on rough terrain. I could bunnyhop a BMX bike at least two vertical feet, but I can only get my 29er about half that height. if you want a bike that handles like a BMX bike, get a BMX bike. understand that you're going to get left in the dust by your friends who are on proper mountain bikes that fit them, or they will drag you around because you're on the wrong bike.

also like I said, forget everything you know. there are some mountain bikes that are trail-worthy that will also be somewhat whip-able but never like a bmx bike. you might transition well into a bike:
hardtail
relatively short reach for its size
short chainstays
high bottom bracket
dropper post

many modern bikes have really long reach and long-travel forks that might be awkward for you. but I'll say it one more time, forget everything you know about bikes because mountain biking and BMX riding are mostly an apples-and-oranges situation.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
you've said it enough. I actually keep up on my bmx, its just a lot bumpier. of course around my way the trails aren't super long nor are there a lot of straight aways so they don't really leave me. im a short stocky wrestler. I pedal muy fasto.
looking at the https://www.raleighusa.com/talus4 atm. I like the tokul 2 too. but the talus comes in a 27.5 wheel size while being a xs 14 frame.
ive ridden a number a mountain bikes before, but never really in depth in terms of trails. mostly street
 

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Mountain biking is generally not about doing tricks but being about to sit and pedal for hours on end, or stay upright as the trail under beats the daylights out of your bike.
This.

What kind of riding do you plan on doing? If you only plan on riding in the same places and the same way that you ride your bmx, I guess go with what feels comfortable in the parking lot. If you plan on riding trails and really getting into mountain biking, you are going to want something that is more comfortable for long rides/climbs, and more stable over roots, rocks and at speed and on the descents.

For reference, I am 5'2" and ride a size S Liv Intrigue Advanced 1 with 27.5" wheels. I could/should technically be on a size XS according to their recommendations, but the bigger bike definitely takes more of a beating and holds it's line better when things get chunky. My size S women's specific bike feels smaller than any of the size S unisex bikes that I tried.
 

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I wonder if the OP is concerned about standover, which tends to wrong-size a lot of people.
Possibly. I know lots of people think standover doesn't really matter, but as a person who is also 5'2", to me it really does matter. It matters when I have to jump off of the bike quickly so I don't get hung up in the top tube on my way over and it also mattered when I was standing and climbing hard as I seemed to bang my inner knees on the top tube of some bikes when really moving them around. So if it is the standover height that is making it hard to pick the right size Imabeast7, just keep looking at other bike brands and models. I demoed many in my search for a bike this spring and there are quite a few out there with low enough standover heights.

Geometry also makes a huge difference in what makes a bike feel too big or too small even when sized correctly. Some bikes make you feel more stretched out and some bikes sit you in a more upright position. Keep looking and trying bikes until you find one that feels good, but make sure it is sized right for the intended use and realize that it isn't going to feel like your bmx and that it shouldn't!
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Very possible. My stand height on a sm feels like im on my tiptoes bc i gotta toptube in my crouch. The xs feels better. Not much sadly.
When i say whip around i thought it was obvious that i ment like i wanna feel like i ride the bike, not that the bike rides me. Burms or just to feel like i can jump over small logs etc. Not launching off rocks and doing tricks per say. Hope that clears it up a little.
 

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That makes more sense.

On most modern bikes, you really can't expect much top tube clearance for your crotch. Just so long as you CAN stand over the top tube and not smash your crotch, that's all you can ask.

What brands are you looking at? What's your budget?
 
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