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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone,

I'm a new poster and I've really enjoyed reading your 29er posts and new builds over the past months since finding out about mtbr.com

I'm writing because I'm a 6'5'' mountain biker and love the sport. As some of you may know, being so tall isn't always easy when it comes to biking and doing the thing I love most.

I've always had problems with bike fit and don't think I've ever had a bike that feels comfortable for my 36'' inside leg. My height seems to really work against me on the climbs and on the steeps where my extremely high centre of gravity pushes me back or too far forward.

This is finally taking its toll on me and for the first time in years I'm considering quitting because my enjoyment is starting to wane.

When an average or moderately tall rider approaches a sudden descent, they can stay relatively seated and ride the trail, I on the other hand have to get my backside so far behind the back wheel that I sometimes can't look ahead. Mtbing seems to be easier for the little guy.

Another thing is climbing, I currently own a Giant Trance X -XL frame but my massive frame makes it look like a kids bike. I simply can't climb despite being reasonably fit. The bike and my weight conspire against me.

Being perched so high up makes me feel disconnected to the trail, my favourite part of riding is doing gnarly downhills because this lets me slam the seatdown and really feel the trail.

Finally I've decided to investigate getting a 29er as everyone says I'll benefit hugely from the lower bb height and that the big wheels will fit my frame better.

Have any bigger guys on this forum had some of the issues I've mentioned with 26'' wheels? Has your riding life improved since you made the switch to 29ers?

I'd love to read your responses before slamming my credit card down and burying my 26'' rig for good.
 

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I'm 6'5" and 250lbs geared, with a 34" inseam. I ride a 21" Fisher Paragon, stock other than brakes. Came from a 21" Trek 8000. I will never go back to small wheels again. I have zero issues with the Fisher from all perspectives - single track, climbing, fast decents, it's all good.

Edit: bottom bracket height should be the same all else being equal other than the wheel size (not comparing XC to AM, etc)
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Hi JK

Do you have any seatpost issues on your 29er? Currently I run a Thomson 410mm virtually to the max. This helps with getting a good leg extension when the trail flattens out, but when the trail changes quickly I tend to find myself in no man's land. When I need to get my weight back it's hard because the seatpost is so high. People say 29ers are more tall friendly but I still see quite a few with loads of post showing.

Anyway I'm happy to see you love your bike. One bike that I really dig is the rumblefish, hell it even comes in size 23'' - that's the bike for me.
 

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Re-friggin'-Lax!!!
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I'm your size...
Get on an XXL Specialized 29er and for the first time in your life say to yourself "Whoa this is big".
6'5" IS tall but there are dudes up to 6'8" on this forum and the Clydesdale forum ripping it up. Have no fear about being too big to ride, sell the Trance Frame/fork/wheels and start investigating a nice 29er set up.
 

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I think the tall guys have trouble in the turns with the high COG (esp. on tree-lined trails where just a little lean makes those trees into slalom gates), but I think we have an advantage in the gnarl where long limbs = more travel. I'm not super tall, but I think I do have a handling advantage in that while my body travels on a relatively smooth line or curve, the bike - I guess specifically the wheels/contact area - can be anywhere other than right under me and I am still in control. You will like a 29er. Maybe something with longer chainstays, huh.

I'm sure someone will scrounge up the Yao Ming 29er pic. I can't say that he actually rides it, but it suggests many possibilities.

-F
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Webertime,

I think it's time to say goodbye to 26'' wheels forever. Have to admit that deep down it's hard. All of my mtb heroes have been on 26'' wheels and like any guy I always wanted to emulate my heroes. Hell, Steve Peat and Greg Minnar are both 6'3'' and they manage to look cool on 26'' wheels, still I do think the rolling resistance affecting smaller wheels has been something that was always gonna change.

I've seen the Specialized 29er stumpjumper, that bike looks way ahead of the market as it's got 130mm rear travel which is a far cry from the current industry standard of 100mm to 120mm

I have to admit that I'd always go for a full bike instead of a frame as to me that is where you get the most bang for your buck.

The SC Tallboy looks amazing but 4 inches of rear travel would take some getting used to.
 

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Naveed said:
Hi JK

Do you have any seatpost issues on your 29er? Currently I run a Thomson 410mm virtually to the max. This helps with getting a good leg extension when the trail flattens out, but when the trail changes quickly I tend to find myself in no man's land. When I need to get my weight back it's hard because the seatpost is so high. People say 29ers are more tall friendly but I still see quite a few with loads of post showing.

Anyway I'm happy to see you love your bike. One bike that I really dig is the rumblefish, hell it even comes in size 23'' - that's the bike for me.
No issues on my seatpost. It's about 1.5" higher than my handlebars and nowhere close to full extension. The first rides on the Fisher, I thought, "whoah, this is huge!", but after a few rides I got used to it and now I realize that the Trek was too small. 23" might be too big for you. Test rides will tell for sure.

The pictures you see with loads of posts showing is probably those riders caught between manufacturer specs (19" vs 21") and opt for the smaller size for stifness, lightness, and flickability, at the expense of running more seat post.
 

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I'm 6'6. There is hope for you and 29" wheels.

Here's my current full-squish XC ride, XXL Lenz Leviathan.
TT: 26" ST: 23"


Here's me on my old XXL Turner Sultan.


My XXL Lenz Lunchbox


My good ol custom hardtail.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Padre said:
I'm 6'6. There is hope for you and 29" wheels.

Here's my current full-squish XC ride, XXL Lenz Leviathan.
TT: 26" ST: 23"


Here's me on my old XXL Turner Sultan.


My XXL Lenz Lunchbox


My good ol custom hardtail.
Brilliant pics! That pic of you on the Sultan blew me away. I've never seen a 6'6'' rider look so proportioned on a bike in my life. Your Lenz looks pretty cool.

I'm sold!!
 

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I am 6' 5" 210lbs w/36" inseam as well. I have NEVER had a problem finding an XL 29er Frame that fit me properly.

Niner
Salsa
Surly
Pivot
Ellsworth
Santa Cruz

Just to name a few. Though I am VERYpartial to the first 3 especially NINER.

PF
 

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Hey there wee man - you've found the real man's corner of the internet where we can get bikes to fit. Stop being such a fluffy kitten and get a 29er in the right size. I'm 6'7" and 255 and I ride an On One Scandal and will be venturing into the special large FS world very soon. We'll see you right here and no more of that whining defeatist talk!
 

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Recovering Weight Weenie
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PanFry said:
I am 6' 5" 210lbs w/36" inseam as well. I have NEVER had a problem finding an XL 29er Frame that fit me properly.

Niner
Salsa
Surly
Pivot
Ellsworth
Santa Cruz
For me

Niner
Salsa
Surly
Pivot
Ellsworth
Santa Cruz

all have headtubes and toptubes that are too short.
 

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Yep, get an XXL 29er like a Turner Sultan and an adjustable seetpost like a Joplin and keep the passion alive. If descending with the seat fully extended makes you uncomfortable, the adjustable seatpost will allow you to extend the seat fully for climbing and then, with a flick of a handlebar mounted lever, lower it for the descents.

Like others have said, there are many folks your height and taller rocking the 29er. Twenty-niners just look and are soooo much more proportional in the bigger sizes which, I would assume, make them perform in a much more controlled and balanced manner.

Here's a post by other tall folks on 29ers you might be interested in.

I couldn't find the picture that Bob the Wheelbuilder posted of his 6' 7" or 6' 8" son with his Sasquatch sized Sultan but it's amazing how porportional they both look together.

And a picture of Yao Mings custom twenty niner for Fleas. :thumbsup: Looks like he could use a 36er.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thanks for all of your replies guys - you've definitely reiginited the passion. Maybe it's just tall psychology; the need to fit in (literally) Bottom line though is that there are loads of tall riders blasting the trails like never before because of 29'' wheels.

If I manage to sell my Giant Trance (please god) I promise to post up the new steed. Because of the global economic crisis I'm currently looking at buying a Felt 29er solo. Looks a sweet bike and falls in my budget range.

Hope to have her soon. Happy riding and thanks!!:)
 

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Naveed said:
If I manage to sell my Giant Trance (please god) I promise to post up the new steed.
I'd be interested in seeing a freak 26er with huge frame. Post it up.
This guy is on 25 inch frame with 29" wheels. The second is 25 inch frame and 26 inch wheels. For clowns only.
 

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Its my personal belief that pretty much any one over 6 foot should be on a 29er the frames just look more in porportion. there are some 21" 26ers at my LBS that wheel looks tiny under the frame. Naveed good luck with your new Felt I do not know what area of the country you are in but single speed and 1X9 are very popular here in the mid west.

My $.02 go with a gary fisher rig or X cal (I have an unhealthy obsession with fox forks) the lifetime warranty is nice too
 

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Its my personal belief that pretty much any one over 6 foot should be on a 29er the frames just look more in porportion. there are some 21" 26ers at my LBS that wheel looks tiny under the frame. Naveed good luck with your new Felt I do not know what area of the country you are in but single speed and 1X9 are very popular here in the mid west.

My $.02 go with a gary fisher rig or X cal (I have an unhealthy obsession with fox forks) the frames lifetime warranty is nice too
 

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6'5''+ 38" inseam+ 210lbs. Biggest Karate Monkey- perfect! So much better than all the big 26" bikes I rode...

Go for it!



 
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