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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am in the market in getting a new bike. Budget below $2000. Full suspension XC bike. I need it to be efficient in climbing. I used my mountain bike as a cross-training for my marathon so I climb hills a lot. My current 26er hardtail serves me fine but I just want to get a full squishy.

But, all I could find nowadays are 29er. I couldn't find full suspension 26er any more. Giant pushes their 27.5 along with the 29er. I am 5'8", 145lb. I tried an Cannondale Scalpel 3 (29er) and I don't like the big wheels at all. it feels so clumsy.

So I am looking at the used ones. It seems that up until 2011/2012 they still have the 26ers. Just curious why all of a sudden people flocking to the big wheels.
 

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Trail Connoisseur
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There are so many threads debating the real why of the industry shift. As stated below many think it's just the manufacturers creating a new market for themselves, others believe it is the demand for different wheel sizes that leads the change. If you find an answer that completely answers this question you will be the first.

Personally I believe there is an advantage to bigger wheels, especially in the XC market, but that is just my opinion.
 

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It's simply " consumer demand " that dictates the market.

29er was introduced, people liked them and thought they were better, word got out and everyone wanted one and bike manufacturers responded.

26" wheels are basically prehistoric now especially with 27.5 wheeled offerings pushing them off the cliff.
 

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GONE
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Nothing climbs better/faster than a 29er, period. It may be a bit clumsier in the turns and techy stuff, though.

There's a trillion really, really nice used 26er F/S bikes out there for sale at all times of life. Go getcha one!
 

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I know several people that just bought new 26 bikes or part's. I actually just bought a new set of custom built 26 wheel's. Seems its the industry trying to make the shift not the people.
 

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Unpredictable
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I know several people that just bought new 26 bikes or part's. I actually just bought a new set of custom built 26 wheel's. Seems its the industry trying to make the shift not the people.
I totally agree. Years of bike company R&D went into the change in sizes before any consumer had input. You buy a 29 or 27.5 and you cannot just move all your parts over from the old 26 or vice versa. We have been conned into believing it is us making the change.
 

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I totally agree. Years of bike company R&D went into the change in sizes before any consumer had input. You buy a 29 or 27.5 and you cannot just move all your parts over from the old 26 or vice versa. We have been conned into believing it is us making the change.
Companies do the R&D and declare justification for introduction. We the consumers respond to they're efforts . We open our wallets for 29er's ...... they profit and make more 29er's. It's us :)
 

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Terrain Sculptor
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Buy used. I got this for $600 bucks.
There is that. 26" FS used bikes are a dime a dozen now. Even older model new are way cheap.
I'm sure if there was enough demand for new 26" FS, the manufacturers would be selling them.
 

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Perpetual n00b
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First I rode a sixer, then I bought a niner, now I'm on a sixer again!
I rode a sixer, a fat bike, a niner, now I'm on a sixer again.

I tell you what if you want to MTB on the cheap then 26er is the way to go right now. $35 tires, $200 air forks, $300 wheel sets. And 26ers can turn!
 

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since 4/10/2009
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FWIW, I've demo'd a bunch of bikes in the past year. I am 5'8 and I frankly cannot tell the difference between 26 and 650b/27.5, so if I were to buy again, I'd be choosing between those wheel sizes...whatever was available, really. My next bike will probably come from the used market, so probably 26. I very much dislike the handling of 29ers, so I will not be buying one anytime soon.
 

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Companies do the R&D and declare justification for introduction. We the consumers respond to they're efforts . We open our wallets for 29er's ...... they profit and make more 29er's. It's us :)
Without any influence from shops promoting what's promoted to them, without them seeing the all-round profit in it, without salespeople saying 26 is on the way out from 5 years ago when 29ers started appearing, we made it all change. Now I understand.

We really are a pretty F'd up community. We whine about the lack of standard size for bottom brackets, seatposts and the like, but embrace the latest deviation from standard for the whole enchilada.
 

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I bought a new Kona FS 26" last year.

2013 Tanuki Deluxe, I paid £1400 (down from £1899) as it was classed as last year's model even then.

I just checked online and there are a fair few online bike shops still with stock of this bike. It's a great bike for under £2,000 and suits me as I am small.

This is in the UK but I'm sure there are stores with NOS bikes in all parts of the world. You have to do a bit of searching as they are not fronting the store's websites. Try and find a make/model of bike that you like, and search eg "2013 Kona Tanuki Deluxe for sale"

The bike store advertising NOS Kona in the UK was on page two of a google search, so most people would never see it.

For example, there's an online store in the UK called Paul's Cycles and they have loads of NOS 26" FS advertised, various makes.
 
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