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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The 29" wheel thing is interesting to me. I usually ride large size mountain bikes, why shouldn't my wheels be bigger too? I've visited the 29er forum and read some of the advantages which sound reasonable. On the other hand they're heavier which is a real world disadvantage in my book, also the lack of tire selection is an issue for me and I like bike that are nimble. The 29er forum seems to have lots of other 'fringe' ideas as well. I want my bike to have gears, I live in the mountains. I'm only interested in 29" wheels if they improve my riding experience.

I'm thinking of a new XCish bike next year, the Titus Racer-X100 is on my list and surprise, it comes in at 29" wheel version. There is a Fisher dealer near me so I'll try to ride a 29" wheel bike this week to form a personal impression. Anyone try one and care to comment on 29" wheel experiences?
 

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I think if the standard was 29"

artnshel said:
The 29" wheel thing is interesting to me. I usually ride large size mountain bikes, why shouldn't my wheels be bigger too? I've visited the 29er forum and read some of the advantages which sound reasonable. On the other hand they're heavier which is a real world disadvantage in my book, also the lack of tire selection is an issue for me and I like bike that are nimble. The 29er forum seems to have lots of other 'fringe' ideas as well. I want my bike to have gears, I live in the mountains. I'm only interested in 29" wheels if they improve my riding experience.

I'm thinking of a new XCish bike next year, the Titus Racer-X100 is on my list and surprise, it comes in at 29" wheel version. There is a Fisher dealer near me so I'll try to ride a 29" wheel bike this week to form a personal impression. Anyone try one and care to comment on 29" wheel experiences?
The tweakers would be riding 26 inchers.
 

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bonkin' clyde
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there is a constant idea in my mind

that parts are hard to find, those that exist aren't cheap, they are specialty items, etc...which is my main aversion to them. Other than that, I'd love to have one, but as always, the flow of moola is slow...

BTW, large diameter wheels=larger surface covered in the same number of pedal rpm's. Also, easier rolling over obstacles because of the larger diameter.
 

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bluronthetrails said:
that parts are hard to find, those that exist aren't cheap, they are specialty items, etc...which is my main aversion to them. Other than that, I'd love to have one, but as always, the flow of moola is slow...

BTW, large diameter wheels=larger surface covered in the same number of pedal rpm's. Also, easier rolling over obstacles because of the larger diameter.
What parts are you talking about exactly? I assume you're not counting the frame. You can't be talking about the rims since they are on almost every road bike anyone uses. Maybe the tubes, but a 26" tube can get you by in a pinch or even permanently if you so choose. There really aren't any other parts that aren't the same as on a 26" bike other than the tires themselves. If you cut up a tire in the middle of nowhere it may be difficult to get another one you really want, like in a 2.1 size, so you'd have to plan for that and have some extras hanging around (don't most of us have some extra 26" tires around), or use something like the fattest cross tire you could find until mail order could come through or whatever.

And I'm not sure your point about surface covered per pedal rpm's has any point since it would just be harder to pedal in that same gear / same rpm with the larger diameter.

Agree about the somewhat easier rolling over obstacles.
 

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The fork.

jpre said:
What parts are you talking about exactly? I assume you're not counting the frame. You can't be talking about the rims since they are on almost every road bike anyone uses. Maybe the tubes, but a 26" tube can get you by in a pinch or even permanently if you so choose. There really aren't any other parts that aren't the same as on a 26" bike other than the tires themselves. If you cut up a tire in the middle of nowhere it may be difficult to get another one you really want, like in a 2.1 size, so you'd have to plan for that and have some extras hanging around (don't most of us have some extra 26" tires around), or use something like the fattest cross tire you could find until mail order could come through or whatever.

And I'm not sure your point about surface covered per pedal rpm's has any point since it would just be harder to pedal in that same gear / same rpm with the larger diameter.

Agree about the somewhat easier rolling over obstacles.
29er forks are way different than 26" forks.
 

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damion said:
29er forks are way different than 26" forks.
Oops. Well, yes, they are. I guess I was lumping that in with the frame. If your frame or fork breaks on a 26" bike, you're in about the same boat as with 29" I think. Modern, new tech 26" forks seem kind of expensive these days too. I guess I could be a little mistaken on that.
 

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Pump up your arms

(I haven't tried it). I agree that you can roll over obstacles easier - on the other hand when an obstacle throws your front off line then the obstacle has greater leverage.
 

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pacman said:
(I haven't tried it). I agree that you can roll over obstacles easier - on the other hand when an obstacle throws your front off line then the obstacle has greater leverage.
I disagree there. Ever tried to ride 20" wheels on rough trails? Royal PITA.
 

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Wrong.

jpre said:
Oops. Well, yes, they are. I guess I was lumping that in with the frame. If your frame or fork breaks on a 26" bike, you're in about the same boat as with 29" I think. Modern, new tech 26" forks seem kind of expensive these days too. I guess I could be a little mistaken on that.
You can walk into most shops and get a fork for the 26" wheel. You can not do the same thing with a 29er.
 

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ballbuster
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I dig 'em!

from my limited experience with them I can tell you this, from my POV:

Momentum is king, here. 29ers let you keep your speed up over stuff, which is a total blast. Just roll over it!

they feel a little more dead-sailor, a little less 'flickable' than 26ers. They loose a little of that snappyness in tight stuff.

Parts are a bit more limited and therefore more expensive, but I don't think this is so much so that it's a show stopper. Heck, I know the feeling, I'm a Mac user.

That said, I'm thinking of building one up when I get some more cash in my life. I've had a blast riding around other's 29ers.
 

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Always Learning
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artnshel said:
The 29" wheel thing is interesting to me. I usually ride large size mountain bikes, why shouldn't my wheels be bigger too? I've visited the 29er forum and read some of the advantages which sound reasonable. On the other hand they're heavier which is a real world disadvantage in my book, also the lack of tire selection is an issue for me and I like bike that are nimble. The 29er forum seems to have lots of other 'fringe' ideas as well. I want my bike to have gears, I live in the mountains. I'm only interested in 29" wheels if they improve my riding experience.

I'm thinking of a new XCish bike next year.....There is a Fisher dealer near me so I'll try to ride a 29" wheel bike this week to form a personal impression. Anyone try one and care to comment on 29" wheel experiences?
You sound like a good candidate to at least be contemplating it and searching out some test rides.

26" wheels looked like little kids wheels with my size (ride an XL frame). I switched from 26" to 29" over the course of the past year and let me tell you - big is good for me. I've got a Karate Monkey and a Fisher Sugar 293 with the big hoops.

I still have a commute bike with 26" wheels, 2 mountain bike tandems with 26" and a recumbent with a rear 26" wheel. However, for my ATB riding, I now am sold on the benefits and ride comfort of the 29" wheel. They've been doing it for years in Europe on bikes disguised as "trekking" bikes using 700c wheels and 35mm/38mm/40mm width knobby tires. Adding a little more meat to the tire volume is the only difference to get to the full 29" experience.

Plenty of tires (Kenda, IRC, WTB, Bontrager, Continental, Schwalbe, etc.) and tubes (WTB, Bontrager, IRC, etc.) available. Shocks from Surly, White Brothers, Marzocchi, RockShox and others are available for the 29" experience. It's not for everybody, but it is out there if you want to give it a try. Finding that Fisher dealer or another rider that has a two niner in the L or XL size for you to try out is the only you way you can put thoughts, words and opinions together. You may like it and you may not like it. The important thing is to ride something you like, can handle and get out there and ride. Be it big hoops, medium hoops or small hoops. My daughter rides 24", my son and wife 26" and I ride 29". We all love to ride.

Is big good?

If you ever meet a girl that says "big is not everything" - take it with a big grain of salt. Big is good.

Here's a picture of my 29" next to my wife's 26".
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
shiggy??? said:
Please define "normal".
I figured I deserved to get caught on that. I got the following from Wordiq.com

Normal
"The term normal has many meanings:

In behavior etc.: normal means not deviating very much from the average; 'not normal' is often used in a negative sense (improper, sick, etc.). Abnormality varies greatly in how pleasant or unpleasant this is for other people; somebody may half-jokingly be called 'pleasantly disturbed'. See also mainstream, temperance, vanilla sex, equilibrium, stability, reality, peace, health, middle way, and on the other hand eccentricity, perversion, paraphilia, intersexual, disease, disability, mental illness, addiction, war, crime, fantasy, dream, hallucination, illusion. Some terms could fit in both lists, for example boredom: too much "normality" can be boring, but boredom is a kind of suffering, which can be considered "not normal".
Quote: It is dangerous to be right on a subject on which the established authorities are wrong. - Voltaire. (It is dangerous not to be "normal" even if you are right).
"

I meant not being different just to be different, but being different to be for a functional improvement
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I like having choices in both tires and forks. It seems I can't get a Manitou or Fox fork fir a 29 and I haven't yet seen a large volume front tire, I'm currently happy on a 26" MotoRaptor 2.4.
I'm less concerned with being able to get parts at my local bike shop. The local bike shops try but don't have a wide selection so I'm used to looking online. Also I have 2 MTB's so if one's down I can always ride the other.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
artnshel said:
I figured I deserved to get caught on that. I got the following from Wordiq.com

Normal
"The term normal has many meanings:

In behavior etc.: normal means not deviating very much from the average; 'not normal' is often used in a negative sense (improper, sick, etc.). Abnormality varies greatly in how pleasant or unpleasant this is for other people; somebody may half-jokingly be called 'pleasantly disturbed'. See also mainstream, temperance, vanilla sex, equilibrium, stability, reality, peace, health, middle way, and on the other hand eccentricity, perversion, paraphilia, intersexual, disease, disability, mental illness, addiction, war, crime, fantasy, dream, hallucination, illusion. Some terms could fit in both lists, for example boredom: too much "normality" can be boring, but boredom is a kind of suffering, which can be considered "not normal".
Quote: It is dangerous to be right on a subject on which the established authorities are wrong. - Voltaire. (It is dangerous not to be "normal" even if you are right).
"

I meant not being different just to be different, but being different to be for a functional improvement
I'll dig my hole even deeper. I saw lots of single speeds and rigid bikes on the 29" forum. Neither of those flavors seem useful for the terrain I live in, lots of hills and rocks. In my neighborhood both those concept would fall under the category of being different just to be different regardless of the disadvantage. I'm sure they both have value, especially in the right terrain, but I find that gears and suspension enhance my riding experience. I'm trying to figure out if 29" wheels will do the same.
 

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You can walk into most shops and get a fork for the 26" wheel. You can not do the same thing with a 29er.
You can walk into more than half of the shops in Anchorage and buy a 29" frame & fork, or complete bike. Just not the one you work at Damion.

Pat's Bikes,.. Paramount,.. REI,.. & That bike shop thats upstairs from the motorcycle shop,
all have 29"ers.
Vs.
The Bicycle Shop,.. Sunshine Sports, & AK mountainbike source. No 29"ers.

Your shop is a Surly Dealer right?
The last time I was in there, They scoffed at my bike & said they've never even tried to sell a Karate Monky.
I should've left right then, but I needed a tube & I didn't have time to stop at another shop.
So I bought the only 29" tube they had.
I got home, and I'm lucky I checked it before I got a flat in the middle of nowhere.
It was a 26" tube in a 29" tube box.
I just threw it away..
What a cruel joke to play on someone who only rides a 29"er. :mad:
 

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artnshel said:
I like having choices in both tires and forks. It seems I can't get a Manitou or Fox fork fir a 29 and I haven't yet seen a large volume front tire, I'm currently happy on a 26" MotoRaptor 2.4.
I'm less concerned with being able to get parts at my local bike shop. The local bike shops try but don't have a wide selection so I'm used to looking online. Also I have 2 MTB's so if one's down I can always ride the other.
Manitou, Rock Shox, Marzocchi, White Bros, and Winwood (at least) all make 29" suspension forks. There are more tires coming on the market for '05 including at least two larger volume models, though not as large as the Moto 2.4 (but that would not fit in current forks/frames).
 

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inof about my switch from 26 to 29...

artnshel said:
I'll dig my hole even deeper. I saw lots of single speeds and rigid bikes on the 29" forum. Neither of those flavors seem useful for the terrain I live in, lots of hills and rocks. In my neighborhood both those concept would fall under the category of being different just to be different regardless of the disadvantage. I'm sure they both have value, especially in the right terrain, but I find that gears and suspension enhance my riding experience. I'm trying to figure out if 29" wheels will do the same.
That was my exact arguement. I have a 4inch front and rear dual susser...that i loved...but i was always wondering about 29ers after having tested one of the first fisher's. I had a budget when i bought mine and in order to keep it under budget got a rigid fork for now. I do ride with gears, and i ride some pretty rocky trails(front range in CO) and while there are certainly times i wish for at least some front suspension i haven't ridden my fully since the day i brought my 29er home...I think it just boils down to a personal thing and that you will have to try one out. make sure you take it to a favorite trail that you are used to riding so will have a more accurate comparison though.
 

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The Duuude, man...
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shiggy??? said:
Manitou, Rock Shox, Marzocchi, White Bros, and Winwood (at least) all make 29" suspension forks. There are more tires coming on the market for '05 including at least two larger volume models, though not as large as the Moto 2.4 (but that would not fit in current forks/frames).
Cheers to that. Close minded people who haven't spent real trail time on a 29er like to complain that 29er are bad idea's becuase of "lack of part availability and choice." First, product availability has nothing to do with if it's a good idea or if they ride great or not. They either do or they don't (for the individual rider). Second, it is a myth that there are not good parts available. See Shig's note above about shocks. Within each of those names is several models of forks as well. Take WB for instance, they will have 4-5 high end 29er fork options for 2005. Frames are the only other 29er specific "part" in question, and the options are HUUGE. Some people might like to say that the wheels are tough to find or some nonsense like that, but me thinks 700c wheels have been around for a looong time. More diversity of options in rims than in the baby-wheel arena. Yes, an equivalently equiped 29er will weigh around 1 lbs more than a 26er. But the benifits of being smoother, faster, more traction, etc.etc. far out weigh (pun intented) the 1 lbs penalty.

Just finished building from scratch this weekend:

<img scr="https://gallery.mtbr.com/data/mtbr/512/medium/234917IMG_1809.JPG">

Image not showing for some reason, here's a link:
https://gallery.mtbr.com/data/mtbr/512/medium/234917IMG_1809.JPG
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
shiggy©®™ said:
Manitou, Rock Shox, Marzocchi, White Bros, and Winwood (at least) all make 29" suspension forks. There are more tires coming on the market for '05 including at least two larger volume models, though not as large as the Moto 2.4 (but that would not fit in current forks/frames).
Ok I'll bite, what new tires do you expect and which Manitou's are made for 29" wheels? By the way, your tire site is a great idea.

Art
 
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