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  1. #1
    see me rollin, they hatin
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    29ers for short people

    ok, this wont be my bike, but i may be borrowing it. we might want a 29er hardtail as a backup bike, and i'm only 5'3 with a short torso, and the guy who will mostly be riding it is only 5'5. we've looked at some of the major brands and the top tube is just way too long in the smallest size. Do they hate short people? of have we not been looking in the right place? i would normally ride a women's small or XS and he rides men's XS (if they have that size) or small. thanks bubs.

  2. #2
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    Reputation: can't get right's Avatar
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    You failed to mention what size/brand the bike is, this could make a difference.

    I know plenty of shorter people on 29ers. I am 5'7" and usually ride a medium so I am not sure what your boy is doing on a xs.

  3. #3
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    One of my good friends is about 5'2 and he rides a 15" Hardrock 29er. It looks comical with the big wheels but he is decently fast with it now that he is used to it.

  4. #4
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    What is your inseam measurement?

    I'm 5'8" (32" inseam) and just bought a 29'er. I got the 39.5cm frame. I tried some larger frames but they just didn't feel right. The 39.5 fits perfect and the seat still has plenty of adjustment left.

    I could measure the distance from the top tube to the ground if you would like......
    Trek Mamba, '97 Specialized FSR

  5. #5
    see me rollin, they hatin
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    Quote Originally Posted by can't get right View Post
    You failed to mention what size/brand the bike is, this could make a difference.

    I know plenty of shorter people on 29ers. I am 5'7" and usually ride a medium so I am not sure what your boy is doing on a xs.
    he is short and stout, right now riding a Giant Trance, extra small. he seems to think thats the best fit for some reason. but they've gotten rid of XS i heard. anyway, i think we read up on Giant, Trek and Specialized and maybe a few others. he has a bad shoulder and maybe thats why he doesnt want to lean too far. I happen to have a bad wrist. just a couple gimps over here

  6. #6
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    My wife and I both ride size small 29ers, I'm 5,7 with a 30 inch inseam and she's about the same height with a bit shorter inseam.

    Lot's of good threads here about this on various forums including the women's lounge, and check out Niner's website and sizing info.

  7. #7
    Short-Change-Hero
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    Bikesdirect (motobecane) make a 14" (xs) 29er and was actually thinking about picking one of those up for my wife as she is 5' nothing.

  8. #8
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    You can do it, but why? A 26'r will fit most people under 5' 7" better!

  9. #9
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    I'm 5'6" with 32 "true" inseam (pants are 29") and ride a medium Specialized. With a 70mm inverted stem and 680mm bars I end up with a moderately aggressive riding position.

    If you have a shorter inseam and want to keep the bars somewhat level to the saddle, you might have a hard time fitting a 29er. If you ride with the bars above the saddle anyway, I don't think fit would be an issue. Some shorter riders just don't like the feel of 29ers though so try to demo one first if you can.

  10. #10
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    We've got a 5 ' 1" gal goes by the name of Godzilla in japanese, tiny little thing, that rides with us on a Niner RIP in a small. No problems with stand over. some suggestions... go short on the stem, 50mm, and don't be afraid to use plenty of spacers under the steerer tube to get the handle bars up.

    One other suggestion... I had a shoulder injury too, and the best thing I ever did was switch to a Marzocchi fork set up plush... a Micro TI 29'er, they are on sale now. It has allowed my shoulder to heal almost fully, because it just does such a better job of sucking up small and mid sized chatter and is so tuneable. The pain is gone, no more aggravation, since switching to the plushness of a marzocchi 29'er fork. YMMV..

  11. #11
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    I'm 5'7" and rode a small Niner RIP9 and now have a medium Turner Sultan. I am mostly torso so they both fit pretty well. If you are mostly legs, it will take more to make the proper fit (stems, bars, seatposts, etc.). If you are coming from a 26" bike now, the bike may feel "tall" and possibly less agile. It took me a while to get used to. I know this is the 29er forum, but you may want to hop onto the 650b forum to get a different opinion. I'm wheel size agnostic.

  12. #12
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    My daughter is 5'3 or 4" and rides a Gary Fisher Cobia with a 15" frame. Works great.
    I like turtles

  13. #13
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    Seriously? Another "29er for short people" thread? How many of these are there a week?
    May the air be filled with tires!

  14. #14
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    My wife loves her "S" Niner E.M.D. and she is 5'3".......5'3.5" on a good day.
    I resolve to constantly assert my honest opinion on anything and everything - whether it is requested or not.
    Bucky the Cat

  15. #15
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    I ride a Misfit diSSent small frame and I'm 5'5". Best $250 I ever spent. I absolutely love that bike, so much that I rarely ride my 2k plus 26 FS bike.
    Misfit diSSent 1x10
    Jet 9

  16. #16
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    I wear a 30 inseam, but it's because I can't find anything shorter in my town. I ordered a Hardrock Disc 29er in the 17.5" frame and had to exchange it for the 15.5" frame. I am 100% more comfortable and safe on the smaller frame. Gotta be honest, when I first saw them wheel the small frame out to the showroom, I thought it was a ladies bike (it's not), but after taking it for a ride, I wouldn't have cared if it was HOT PINK, the dang thing just fit and I love riding it.

    Here she is...
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 29ers for short people-hrck1.jpg  


  17. #17
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    Lito, how much does that weigh? I have a 21" frame and am just wondering because mine was 32.5lbs stock.

  18. #18
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    I have a turner in small 2010. Love the bike, for some reason Dave Turner decided to cancel the small. If you can find one I highly highly recommend
    "Chancho. When you are a man sometimes you wear stretchy pants... Its for fun..."

  19. #19
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    I'm riding a 16" Haro Mary 29er... it was the only 29er that I tried that I didn't feel like I was on some sort of circus ride, all the others I felt like I was sitting WAY too high. I'm still getting used to the bigger wheels, but it feels much better than the others I tried.

    I'm a 5'6" guy.

    -Eric
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 29ers for short people-001haromary.jpg  


  20. #20
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    With a view to getting the handlebar in the 26erish place. Why not? Some of you might think that stem must soar only. It takes time to get used to it, just like we've gotten used to bigger wheels. Why not inverted riserbars plus flipped stems? Do we really need to take after 26er standards and proportions? 29ers are not 26ers.








    :smt098

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yogii View Post
    You can do it, but why? A 26'r will fit most people under 5' 7" better!
    But the wheels are 26".....that is the problem.

  22. #22
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    we have no beef with 26 wheels. We are selling the current 26inch hard tail, and figured it would be something different to try. i dont expect it to fit me well, but even he thinks they'll all be too long. but there are times when i may be riding it if my bike is out of commission.

  23. #23
    see me rollin, they hatin
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    ps, i'm sorry that this has been asked before. but we're not just short, we're WEIRD short. quirky body types. i have a short torso and long legs. he's the opposite. we are probably about 30 inseam, even though we are different heights.

    in the end, we probably wont get a 29er. all the trails around here are very tight and rocky. dont shoot me if i'm wrong about this, but from what i've heard from people who have ridden both, that some trails are better and some are worse when it comes to 26 and 29.

  24. #24
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    you are not going to get a good standover height on most anything 29er, although i thought specialized had the myka which is for females?

    im 5'6" and have a had 2 small framed 29ers. my FS gives me about an inch between my gentleman bits and the top tube. on my hardtail my gentleman bits rest on the top tube.

    havent had an issue on either bike. just focus on the fit while you are seated and riding IMO
    Gary Fisher HiFi Deluxe 29er

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by NicoleB28 View Post
    in the end, we probably wont get a 29er. all the trails around here are very tight and rocky. dont shoot me if i'm wrong about this, but from what i've heard from people who have ridden both, that some trails are better and some are worse when it comes to 26 and 29.
    Niner Jet9 RDO has 27,2" standover, go for it!
    Niner Jet9 RDO vs. Ibis Mojo SLR - Female rider 5'4"

  26. #26
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    What up? I just wanted to throw this out there. Better late than never. Anyhow, my girlfriend and I expiremented with my S (17" w/ 585 mm TopTube) fuji Tahoe Pro 29er (reba x9/x7) over the long Thanksgiving weekend. This was my bike and fit me pretty well and I am 5'9.5" with longer legs and longer arms. I had a 110m stem and 10mm set back seat post on it. I was on the bigger end of this bike, but I was comfortable on it. My GF has been riding a small (14") 26er hardtail with some decsent components. However, she has been very curious about the 9er world. I was looking at buying a small 9er so she can give it a try, but that will be a loss for me if it didn't work out. Well, on to the expierement, we ended up getting a new 60mm stem and zero set back setpost for the Fuji. I set the reach and saddle height very similar to her 6er. Man, I was very freakin surprised how small the bike looked after I replaced those parts.. I couldn't believe it was my bike!! We dialed in the fit, and we went on a 15 mile rocky trail ride with some good drops and short bursty climbs. She cleared all of it with ease. She stated that she had never made it all the way through the trail without unclipping on her 6er. Then, this past Sunday, we did a little tougher trail ride with some steady steep climbs and rocky technical areas scattered throughout the trail. She rocked it.. I was behind her at one point just to see how she handled and looked on the bike. She looked in control and she looked very stable. Plus the bike did not look too big for her at all. We even ran into an old buddy on the trail and he said that the bike looked like it fit her well. Not to mention, she was a lot faster on this 9er than she was on her 6er. When we ride, we ride at a pretty good pace. Well, she was right there with us pretty much. When she was on the 6er, we were waiting a lot more longer at the stop points. After the ride, she was very happy. She loved the bike and the ride. The only place she felt less control was on the fast swoopy, sharp curvy, downhill sections of the trail. She will get this down though after a month or so, I am sure. She was able to climb easier and decsend faster on the long rocky techy areas. Plus, she was less fatigued during the ride. (we did over 20m). My GF is 5'1" with out shoes and has 29.5" inseam. When she is on the bike, she has plenty of standover clearance. She is happy, so I gave her the bike. She was thinking about going FS 6er, but not anymore. She love the feel of the 29er. I don't blame her, that is what I felt like when I rode one for the 1st time. Sorry for the long post, but I just wanted to give examples here. We will be going on a 30+ mile trail ride this weekend. I am sure she will do great and have fun.

  27. #27
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    Buy her a JEr rdo9 with 27,2" standover. It has 100mm of travel.

  28. #28
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    New Frame

    Quote Originally Posted by Davidcopperfield View Post
    Buy her a JEr rdo9 with 27,2" standover. It has 100mm of travel.
    Haha, yeah, then she will have a better bike than me, haha. I am on a Spearfish right now, so I am sure that RDO9 might be a better rig since it is carbon,haha. Yeah, the plan is to get a new smaller frame at the beginning of next year with a lower SO height and a shorter effective tob tube length.

  29. #29
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    5'1" and 29.5" inseam....her arms must attach to her hips.

    Really I know guys your height who have 29.5" inseams or less.

  30. #30
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    Hahaha, yeah we both have some wierd bodies. It's that Tucson Water, hahaha JK. I have a inseam of 33.5 without shoes and I am under 5'10".. I freaks me out. My 1st road bike I was fitted on was a 58cm XL with a 110mm stem. I can fit on those bigger bikes. I can tweak the smaller bikes to make them fit me as well. Yeah, my GF has some longer than average arms and feet too. I am sure this plays a role. We are a couple of freaks, hahaha.

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yogii View Post
    You can do it, but why? A 26'r will fit most people under 5' 7" better!
    Try telling that to Impy.
    Abandoned the 26" wheel in May '03

  32. #32
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    I have a size small Yelli Screamy and the standover is excellent. I am a 5'5" female with a 29 inch inseam and this bike has better standover clearance than any bike I've ever had. (And this includes women specific frames.) What's even better than the stand over though is the snappy climbing and the geometry of the frame. This bike is seriously fun and a totally different ride from the size small Sir9 that I had in the past! The Yelli climbs just as well as the Sir9 but the more relaxed head tube angle makes the descents a hell of a lot more fun! And unlike the circus bike feel of the Sir9, the Yelli puts you in the bike. I never had a learning curve on this bike. I was comfortable and right at home from the first pedal stroke.

    I have a size small Turner 5 Spot as well and I have to say that both bikes are the perfect compliment to each other for the diversity of the trails here in Southern California.

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