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err, 27.5+
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
After some questions, information gathering, and a little debate I settled up to the counter and put my money down. Bike arrived to the LBS on Friday and I picked it up on Saturday. From there I tore into it. Right off the top I swapped the rotors for some 180mm Formulas that I had hanging around. Other swaps from my parts bin included X7 shifters(instead of the SX5), an XT front derailleur (instead of the Deore), and a black S7 rear derailleur (instead of the silver one, just had to keep with the red/black theme). No bling, mostly lateral swaps other than the rotors.

Here she is on the maiden journey


My initial thoughts:
1) This thing accelerates about the same as my 6/6 bike with 2.4 tires
2) Once going it holds speed well
3) Cable discs are not as great as hydros, but their redemption comes in their ability to be setup drag free
4) Steering is definitely going to take a few rides to get used to, the 29er coupled with the 80mm travel has a lack of response at first and then dives too hard once it gets going. It is an interesting phenomena to say the least
5) Climbing and off camber grip is downright awe inspiring:thumbsup: There is something to be said for that larger contact patch
6) XC bike geometry is dangerous on the same trails that you ride your 6/6 rig on ;)
7) The flex is there, but the 22" XL size seems to be stiffer than the L frame and honestly I have had worse flex out of more chi-chi frames. Not as bad as I had feared, so that was a relief.
8) Bigger wheels do roll better over obstacles :D
 

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Harmonius Wrench
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8,254 Posts
Geometry

Your issues with #4 on your list sound familiar. I have an XXIX+G and it does the same thing. It's due to the inordinately high trail figure generated by a combination of short offset and slack head angle.

The fix would be to get a suspension fork with a longer offset, which would lower the trail figure and quicken up the front end. Most importantly, it would get rid of that heavy, "chopper-like" feel on the bars in slower, techy cornering manouvers.

Fortunately, Manitou is coming out with such a fork soon. I believe White Brothers offers something with more than 38-40mm offset too. Later on, Rock Shox and Fox will probably have similar offerings as well.

I'm planning on taking off my Reba and trying a 47mm offset Inbred Superlight rigid fork next on my XXIX+G. I'll be posting results soon.
 

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err, 27.5+
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4,928 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Yep, that sounds about right. I was considering letting the fork out to 100mm and seeing how it rides there as well, but based on your comments that might do little more than amplify the issue and make the steering slower. I think my first step is going to be putting on some 710mm bars, so I can eliminate the narrower bars as part of my awkwardness (I am used to wider bars 690-710mm typically on my 26ers). Long stems are also not something I am accustomed to, so the overall feel is pretty weird when I push the bike like I would a 26er trail bike. Understandably two different beasts though, so I will have to adjust.

My initial impression though is that the benefits look like they outweigh the negatives :thumbsup: This rig is a lot of bike for relatively minor expense. I think Raleigh has a winner here. For most riders in the sub-clyde class the rotor swap wouldn't be necessary.
 

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standover rheight

What is the standover height of the 22" xxl frame? I want an xxix to build up as a 1x9 but i have a 36" inseam and have heard that the way the frame is designed it seems small. I rode a medium frame at my lbs and it was Waaaaaaaay too small.

TIA
 

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err, 27.5+
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4,928 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Claimed standover is 32.2". I am 6'3" with a 33" inseam and actually found that the stock seat post (350mm) was long enough for me. I will most likely get a thomson 410mm just to have additional post in the frame, but it isn't a necessity.

I like the way that the frame fits. My custom bike has simillar numbers for seat tube and head tube. So for me the frame fits just fine. I think a lot of manufacturers are using sizing simillar to this (Specialized is one).
 

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err, 27.5+
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4,928 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
FWIW, swapped out a couple of additional items. Steel chanrings swapped for alloy. Tires swapped to Bontrager Jones ACX (@600g ea). After all said and done:

Weight: 29.4lb

Definitely not a light bike, but not bad. Right in line with most of my Clydesdale proportioned XC hardtails (usually in the 28-30lb range).

I am obviously still getting used to the bike, but it does continue to impress. Only downside to this whole 29er gig is the acceleration. Kind of make me feel like I am pushing 1000g tires even though they are much lighter. Climbing traction is off the hook though ;)
 

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err, 27.5+
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4,928 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Well, it has been about a week since I updated here. I swapped out to some hydro brakes and changed over to a 110mm stem. I think I am done with tinkering now. The bike is catered to me and I am really digging it. I am not really sure how much value this thread has to people who want to run the stock bike. However I will point out that most of my changes were to morph the bike into a specific purpose (xc rides and races). Most people don't have quite as extensive of a spare parts bin as I do. But I do think that many may do these types of upgrades to the stock bike over time. As it sits today it weighs in at a hair over 29lb. The frame, fork, and wheels (ie the heart of this bike) really do make for a great riding 29er.

Every ride that I put on this bike I feel more at home on it. An added bonus is that it really does look proportional. It is nice to have an XC bike in the stable that is not only purpose built, but truly a joy to ride.

:thumbsup: for Raleigh
 

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err, 27.5+
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4,928 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Just for the record...

Stock bike weight 31.5lb+/-
Modified build 29lb
Changes from stock
Tires: WTB Exiwolf 2.3 ---> Bontrager Jones ACX
Stem: EA30 120mm x 5* ---> Thomson 110 x 10*
Handlebars: EA50 635 mid rise ---> EA70 685 mid rise
Brakes: Avid BB5 160mm ---> Shimano hydro 180mm (deore 555 fr, XT 765 r)
Seat: WTB Laser V Comp ---> Giro somethingerother I had with Ti rails (comfortable too)
Seat Post: EA30 ---> FSA
Pedals: plastic flats ---> Shimano PD-M540
Front Derailleur: Deore ---> XT
Tubes: WTB light 29er ---> Bontrager ultralight 26 x 1.95
Grips: Stock raleigh ---> Odi ruffian lock-on
Chainrings: Trushift steel ---> Shimano XT alloy

Lots of swapping, but for me the only items that didn't come from my parts bin were the Thomson stem, EA70 bars, and bontrager tires. After the items I took off hit fleabay I should break even :p
 

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Harmonius Wrench
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8,254 Posts
Heavily Modified here too

I went a bit different route with mine. My main nit was that the stock set up with the Reba fork was just too slow and sluggish in the handling department for my tastes. So, I dug out my Inbred fork that was lying dormant in the parts bin to see if 47mm of offset could help.

Boy howdy! This bike is a new ride now. Of course I saved a little weight in the process too. The sluggish feeling is gone and it handles much more like a "normal" 29"er. Not super quick, because the XXIX+G is waaaay at the other end of the scale with a high trail figure. The Inbred fork brought it down into the range of what alot of 29"ers are running anyway. 71 degree head angle now as it sits when it was 70 degrees with the Reba. That also helps a bit.

Ultimate cure for the XXIX+G will be to get one of the new crop of longer offset forks, once they become available.

I'll get a pic up soon...........maybe later today
 

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err, 27.5+
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4,928 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
GT, honestly the steering isn't bugging me anymore. The shorter stem coupled with stiffer stem/bar combo have made a world of difference in response time. Maybe I have just gotten used to it, maybe the new parts have had a placebo effect, or I am just not that sensitive to the nuances of 1 degree HA change and 5mm change in offset. I think the latter is most likely the case. Lighter tires don't hurt the response time any either ;)

Personally I wouldn't go rigid. While it does make for lighter and better climbing on the bike the descents really do suffer. I rode a rigid SS for about half of last year. It was fun, but as stated descending can be a bit hair raising if you are more accustomed to a 5/6" bike :p
 

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err, 27.5+
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4,928 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
A couple of pictures for the record. Looking very stealth. Maybe I will throw some red ano accents on it at some point. For now I am digging the anti-bling that this bike displays. Great contrast to most of the new bike introductions around this joint as of late (if I see one more set of I9 wheels I am gonna barf :idea:)

Still fiddling with the stem height and seat position, but that will eventually work itself out. After a couple of rides I can honestly say that the thomson stem is the upgrade that I would recommend most. It transformed the front end from noodly to in control :thumbsup:. Kind of odd because most easton stems I have had in the past were fairly stiff and overbuilt :eek:ut:
 

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