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  1. #1
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    Most versatile Travel range and 650B equivalency

    With all the new hype for 29ers, I've started to wonder if anyone has enough experience to be able to answer these questions. I realize that bike setup and rider style/preferences will play into this, but it seems like there should be some fairly general answers...

    1. What 29er travel range give the best all around versatility? Can you get a broader range of usefulness from a 29er than from a 650B?

    They say a skilled rider can ride any bike anywhere but there are limits to that. While you might be good enough to take a hard tail down a World Cup DH course, talent probably won't bridge the gap enough to allow a DH bike keep up on a fast paced trail ride. So I assume there is a sweet spot for 29ers where they stay agile and maintain their fast rolling identity, but still maximize their DH capability - specifically in regards to the benefits that 29er wheels bring beyond what just adding more travel would do for you.

    2. Given a specific 29er setup, what is the equivalent 650B setup - and how does the ride differ for these similarly targeted bikes? For example, what would be the 650B equivalent of Evil's The Following? And would that 650B bike be as versatile?

    I apologize if someone had asked these questions before. It's just something that's been on my mind since this year started with a lot of wheel size mania. We've seen that ultimately, wheel size is more of a preference for a specific set of compromises, than a guarantee of performance in a certain genre. But, I can't help but try and optimize the abilities of my trail bike so I continue to search...

  2. #2
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    Versatility in is the eye of the beholder. For my my most versatile bike is my geared 29er HT. But that is just me and KNOW others will greatly disagree.

    There is no one bike that can do it all, but there could be a bike that will make you happy for nearly all the riding you do.
    Joe
    '12 Santa Cruz Highball 29", '13 Santa Cruz Solo 27.5",Vassago Verhauen SS 29" XC, AM, blah blah blah.. I just ride.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by JoePAz View Post
    Versatility in is the eye of the beholder.
    I don't think so. I think there are finite limits to the range of useable comfort a bike can impart on the rider. Age and skill may modify that, but a rider's style and preference don't change the physics of the bike. You may love your hardtail (as I loved mine) but that hard landing that cracked my ankle wouldn't have been as hard, and may not have resulted in bone damage, if there had been some rear squish.

    So to restate the first question... There must be some consensus on what a given travel range feels like - or is capable of. For instance (and this is just an example and not an actual observation): 120mm rear travel on a 29er feels like 140mm on a 650B bike and pedals like a 110mm travel 650B bike, but feels slower than a 160mm travel bike in corners.

    An observation like that would say a lot about the versatility of a given setup.

  4. #4
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    I don't think travel and Wheel size are comparable. How your suspension is set up will depend on how much travel you need or use. I think it's best to pick which wheel size you prefer, based on the compromises they have. Then pick the suspension set up and travel you want.

  5. #5
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    According to NS bikes, a 140/130 29er with aggressive trail/AM geometry is akin to a 150mm 650b.

    "In fact we all concluded that it rides like a 150mm 27.5" bike even though it actually has way less travel."
    https://www.pinkbike.com/news/ns-sna...1--review.html

    I would be comfortable suggesting that Santa Cruz thinks the same thing with their 135mm 29er Hightower and the 150mm 650b Bronson.
    I like 'em long, low, slack and playful

  6. #6
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    Interesting question, and one that I've been contemplating as well. I am relatively new to mountain biking. Like most, I had a BMX bike as a kid and built jumps in the neighborhood with the other kids. Started riding moto in Junior High and left pedaling. Now in my late 30's and got on a MTB two years ago, then a DJ bike, and wish I'd never left pedaling!

    The MTB I bought was a 26" with pretty high end parts on it, but it's all I know so never had a comparision. Short travel rear, Lyric fork lowered to 150mm.

    I'm at the point now where I'm pushing it's limits and looking for something new. So that introduced me to the whole wheel size debate and I started wondering, like the OP, if a 29er rolls over chunder easier, then can it get by with less travel before it's overwhelmed, compared to 27.5 bike?

    As an example, in my shopping I discovered Canfield bikes. They seem like a cool company, I dig their approach. That led me to consider the Riot vs. the Balance. Geo wise, they are pretty comparable in terms of riding style, essence and purpose, but the Riot (now called the Tior I guess?) is 140mm front and rear, with the Balance being 165mm.

    Knowing that the brothers are gravity riders at heart, and that they tend to overbuild bikes for that kind of thrashing, I figured they thought 140mm on a 29er was pretty capable, maybe the rough equivalent of a the Balance at 27.5 and in the 160mm range?

    But I've read of some guys feeling like they overwhelmed the 140mm fork on my local SoMo riding rea, and have seen some guys switching forks to the MRP Stage or the Fox 36 because at 150mm travel, those forks are the same A-C length as the Pike at 140mm. However, I don't read about people over riding the Balance at 160mm fork, so it got me thinking.

    I mention those two bikes just because they seem like a relevant comparison, and it got me wondering, what is the equivalent? Can a 140mm or 150mm 29er eat the same terrain that 165mm 27.5 can, all other variables being (roughly) equal?

    I read the hot seat thread with the bros where, I think Lance said that 140 rear, 150 fork was the edge of where a 29er could feel poppy and playful, hence the Riot. Both brothers said they would prefer to race the Riot over the Balance on an Enduro race, which I thought was interesting, but also read where Chris said he was trying to talk Lance into building a longer travel Riot, and making some geo tweaks to accept a 160mm fork, so...?

  7. #7
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    I have a Riot. It's very capable. With custom tuned suspension it's a very capable trail bike, think AM trail bike. The Balance is in its more capable even with smaller wheels, more like a mini DH bike.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott2MTB View Post
    I don't think so. I think there are finite limits to the range of useable comfort a bike can impart on the rider. Age and skill may modify that, but a rider's style and preference don't change the physics of the bike. You may love your hardtail (as I loved mine) but that hard landing that cracked my ankle wouldn't have been as hard, and may not have resulted in bone damage, if there had been some rear squish..
    Versatility is the eye of the beholder. A geared 29HT will do everything I want to on a bike. Maybe not what you want to, but covers what I want. Long rides, short rides, bikepacking, steep climbs, steep descents, fast trails, twisty trails, fun rides and racing.
    Joe
    '12 Santa Cruz Highball 29", '13 Santa Cruz Solo 27.5",Vassago Verhauen SS 29" XC, AM, blah blah blah.. I just ride.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cerberus75 View Post
    I have a Riot. It's very capable. With custom tuned suspension it's a very capable trail bike, think AM trail bike. The Balance is in its more capable even with smaller wheels, more like a mini DH bike.
    Thanks for sharing. I am really interested in both bikes as my next bike. What pulled you to the Riot over the Balance? Are you running the 140mm fork? What rear shock?
    I'm seeing a lot of them with the Push or other coil units. Looking for a bike "big" enough not to hold me back on the faster, chunky, rocky down hill sections, but no so big that tamer trails can still be fun. I earn my turns, so despite being slightly heavier, the fact that I keep reading that CBF pedals so well is encouraging.

    Quote Originally Posted by JoePAz View Post
    Versatility is the eye of the beholder. A geared 29HT will do everything I want to on a bike. Maybe not what you want to, but covers what I want. Long rides, short rides, bikepacking, steep climbs, steep descents, fast trails, twisty trails, fun rides and racing.
    Can't speak for OP, but I think what he's trying to do is take the "what I want" or "what you want" out of it and just objectively discuss versatility as a general concept, as in which can do the most, in general? Are there limits that a 29er at 140mm has that a 27.5 at 160mm doesn't have? If there are limits, what is the suspension threshold between wheel sizes where that comes into play?

    Just how I read him, could be wrong.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by kmj831 View Post
    Thanks for sharing. I am really interested in both bikes as my next bike. What pulled you to the Riot over the Balance? Are you running the 140mm fork? What rear shock?
    I'm seeing a lot of them with the Push or other coil units. Looking for a bike "big" enough not to hold me back on the faster, chunky, rocky down hill sections, but no so big that tamer trails can still be fun. I earn my turns, so despite being slightly heavier, the fact that I keep reading that CBF pedals so well is encouraging.



    Can't speak for OP, but I think what he's trying to do is take the "what I want" or "what you want" out of it and just objectively discuss versatility as a general concept, as in which can do the most, in general? Are there limits that a 29er at 140mm has that a 27.5 at 160mm doesn't have? If there are limits, what is the suspension threshold between wheel sizes where that comes into play?

    Just how I read him, could be wrong.

    Versatility meaningless if you don't have a standard to compare it too. One could argue a cross bike is the most versatile since it will do pavement, dirt roads and light trail. Then again 160mm Enduro is most versaility since you can take it to lift assisted bike park and ride it up trails too. Other will say a 29+ HT frame since you can load it up for bike packing. Use it soft sand and even some snow. Then put 29er wheels on it go fast. Or maybe put drop bars and rigid fork and run 38mm gravel tires. Heck with right drop outs it cold be Singlespeed too. I can make an argument for any of these, but all that is meaningless if we don't have context.


    Now what is suspension threashold when wheel sizes come into play? Heck if I know. Again this has to do mostly with riding style. My 29er HT rolls over rocks better than my 27.5 130/125 FS bike. That said when the trail goes down hill the more rocks the better the FS does. However when cornering the HT is superior. For the most part just about any bike will right through any trail, but HOW they do it varies greatly. How that makes you feel is entirely dependent on what kind of experience you are looking for. My 3 bikes (geared 29HT, SS 29HT, 5" 27.5) all provide different rider experiences even on the same trails. Often there is a "right bike" for me on those trails for that day. One day I may want the SS experience and another a more DH experience. It it not fair to say one experience is "better" than any other. They are different. The "better" and "more versatile" are personal judgements not absolutes.
    Joe
    '12 Santa Cruz Highball 29", '13 Santa Cruz Solo 27.5",Vassago Verhauen SS 29" XC, AM, blah blah blah.. I just ride.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott2MTB View Post
    ... So I assume there is a sweet spot for 29ers where they stay agile and maintain their fast rolling identity, but still maximize their DH capability - specifically in regards to the benefits that 29er wheels bring beyond what just adding more travel would do for you..
    Just one example (probalby useless due to too many other variables)
    This weekend I rode my SC Solo (First year so it is still solo, before the 5010 name change) and a friend rode his 29er Enduro.

    Both bikes had dropper posts, aluminium frame and similar (but not the same) tires.
    His bike is 160mm 29 and mine is 130/125 27.5. For me it is my "big bike" and for my buddy the enduro is his "go to" bike.

    Two long descents.
    First was 4.5 miles 1200 feet. Rocky in places, flowed in places and a few techy features. Going down fast requires good control in the turns and maintain speed an control in the rocks. I bet my friend down by a considerable time margin. Then later we had 10 min down hill section. This one was not as steep or rocky, but had lots of turns, some banked, and enough rock so keep you honest. Again I smoked him. At the end he told me he could not maneuver the his enduro as quicky around the turns as I could. He said is bike is good for going straight down the really gnarly stuff and suffers when you have to turn more.

    Do I agree. Maybe. I now the SC Solo does not turn as fast as the SC Highball Hardtail and it has taken time for me to adjust for this. That said I have been adjusting and now feel alot more confident in the turns on the slacker longer travel Solo. So I can see a point where his bike feels slower. That said how much of it rider vs bike? I have no idea. I really believe he can learn to get the bike through turns faster if he practices at them more. Because he is a bit taller than me I we can't swap bikes and settle the issues. His bike IS too big for me and mine IS to too small for him. So that would impact the results more than wheel size and travel.

    So is a 160mm 29er Enduro a "big fat lazy bike?" Hard to say. Or is a SC Solo nimble and agile? Well compared to my 29er HT is no where near as nimble, but I have learned to "force it" a bit. So in some ways it is faster and for others it is not. This such a tough call since it really so very rider and rider expectation dependent.
    Joe
    '12 Santa Cruz Highball 29", '13 Santa Cruz Solo 27.5",Vassago Verhauen SS 29" XC, AM, blah blah blah.. I just ride.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by JoePAz View Post
    Versatility meaningless if you don't have a standard to compare it too. One could argue a cross bike is the most versatile since it will do pavement, dirt roads and light trail. Then again 160mm Enduro is most versaility since you can take it to lift assisted bike park and ride it up trails too. Other will say a 29+ HT frame since you can load it up for bike packing. Use it soft sand and even some snow. Then put 29er wheels on it go fast. Or maybe put drop bars and rigid fork and run 38mm gravel tires. Heck with right drop outs it cold be Singlespeed too. I can make an argument for any of these, but all that is meaningless if we don't have context.


    Now what is suspension threashold when wheel sizes come into play? Heck if I know. Again this has to do mostly with riding style. My 29er HT rolls over rocks better than my 27.5 130/125 FS bike. That said when the trail goes down hill the more rocks the better the FS does. However when cornering the HT is superior. For the most part just about any bike will right through any trail, but HOW they do it varies greatly. How that makes you feel is entirely dependent on what kind of experience you are looking for. My 3 bikes (geared 29HT, SS 29HT, 5" 27.5) all provide different rider experiences even on the same trails. Often there is a "right bike" for me on those trails for that day. One day I may want the SS experience and another a more DH experience. It it not fair to say one experience is "better" than any other. They are different. The "better" and "more versatile" are personal judgements not absolutes.

    JoePAz, what I'm seeing is that you're basically saying that in your mind "versatility" is a topic that can't be discussed as it's only meaningful in the context of the person trying to define it. You want there to be some standard to compare against. You also seem to be equating the pejorative word "better" with the word "versatile". I don't think they are related. I would agree with you that "better" is in the eyes of the beholder. I think that "versatile" is rooted in function. The swiss army knife is more a versatile knife than a butcher knife. It's not better though, especially if you're a butcher.

    I think the context is clear here in the 29er mountain bike forum that we're not talking about road bikes, or 'cross bikes, and that from the small handful of responses the idea of a bike's versatility is one that (at least some) people can relate to. The standard is nothing more than idea that there is a basis of comparison inherent in the terrain that the bike feels comfortable on. I rode x and it felt like y. If there were enough responses, we might see a trend.

    Is it scientific? No. Is it fun to talk about? I think so. If we don't talk, what's the point of the forum?

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    Quote Originally Posted by JoePAz View Post

    So is a 160mm 29er Enduro a "big fat lazy bike?" Hard to say. Or is a SC Solo nimble and agile? Well compared to my 29er HT is no where near as nimble, but I have learned to "force it" a bit. So in some ways it is faster and for others it is not. This such a tough call since it really so very rider and rider expectation dependent.
    You're right that comparing different bikes with different riders doesn't really help much. But if YOU were to take out the Riot (for example) and see how it felt in comparison to your Bronson, then I bet you would be able to tell me about how they compared.

    -edit Solo, not Bronson. Sorry.
    Last edited by Scott2MTB; 06-19-2017 at 04:42 PM. Reason: Type

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    I understand what you're saying Joe, but I think Scott made his context pretty clear. From reading his OP, here are the things that he mentions;

    29er
    650b
    Full suspension
    DH sections and trail riding
    Evil's the following.

    From that, I think we can pretty well tell what type of bikes, riding type etc he is comparing.

    From there, it's a matter of, as he stated, suspension travel that gives the most versatility in this context (capable down, capable climber, capable trail bike) and what is the 650b equivalent, and what is the suspension travel disparity allowed by the varying tire size?

    Maybe TS doesn't envision the same type of comparisons I do, but his question conjures up bike like;

    Riot vs Balance (140mm vs 165mm)
    YT Jeffsy (29er) vs YT Jeffsy (27) vs Capra (140/140mm vs 160/160mm vs 170/170mm)
    GG Trail Pistol vs Mega Trail (120ish/150ish vs 150/160mm depending on mode)
    SC High tower vs Bronson (135/135mm vs 150.150mm)
    Transition Smuggler vs Scout vs Patrol (115/130 vs 125/140 vs 155/160mm)

    Just to name a few.

    For sure there are other variables (linkage type, geometry) but with a few (albeit anecdotal) data points, we ought to be able to get a general baseline for suspension travel and the versatility limits per tires size.

    I think talking about what person specifically is wanting is the wrong approach, rather, "which suspension travel range for a 29er and 27.5 bike will fit the broadest range of riders and conditions for trail/AM/Enduro type riding?" and why?

    And various cross comparisons of those.

  15. #15
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    [QUOTE=kmj831;13215827]Thanks for sharing. I am really interested in both bikes as my next bike. What pulled you to the Riot over the Balance? Are you running the 140mm fork? What rear shock?
    I'm seeing a lot of them with the Push or other coil units. Looking for a bike "big" enough not to hold me back on the faster, chunky, rocky down hill sections, but no so big that tamer trails can still be fun. I earn my turns, so despite being slightly heavier, the fact that I keep reading that CBF pedals so well is encouraging.



    What you want is why I chose the Riot. I can ride it XC all day. But hit the chunky stuff without worrying. It turns on a dime and climbs well. The balance is more of the long and low bikes that I dont like in tight single track, but great in bike parks and open terrain.. If i live where i could strech out its legs, Id have both. I have an avalanche coil, and anow avalanche cartridge on the way for the fork.

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    [QUOTE=Cerberus75;13216078]
    Quote Originally Posted by kmj831 View Post
    Thanks for sharing. I am really interested in both bikes as my next bike. What pulled you to the Riot over the Balance? Are you running the 140mm fork? What rear shock?
    I'm seeing a lot of them with the Push or other coil units. Looking for a bike "big" enough not to hold me back on the faster, chunky, rocky down hill sections, but no so big that tamer trails can still be fun. I earn my turns, so despite being slightly heavier, the fact that I keep reading that CBF pedals so well is encouraging.



    What you want is why I chose the Riot. I can ride it XC all day. But hit the chunky stuff without worrying. It turns on a dime and climbs well. The balance is more of the long and low bikes that I dont like in tight single track, but great in bike parks and open terrain.. If i live where i could strech out its legs, Id have both. I have an avalanche coil, and anow avalanche cartridge on the way for the fork.
    Thanks for the info. Chubbie or Woodie? I don't want to derail the thread, but shoot me a message with a review if you don't mind. I'm thinking of picking up a Riot frame with no shock, and building it up over the next few months.

  17. #17
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    For me - a lightweight 29er with 110mm rear and 120mm front is MY sweet spot. Combined with 2.35 tires... I'm going places.

    Previously had a 2016 Scott Genius 27.5 with 38mm ID Derby wheels and 2.5" tires. The 6 inches of slack travel, long-stays/wheelbase and 31-pound weight was a buzzkill, for the steep, rocky SoCal desert I ride in. The new 25-pound Pivot Mach 429SL I have now is a XC/Marathon race bike that "thinks" it's a AM/Trail bike. With dropper seatpost... it's all GOOD!
    "This is a male-dominated forum... there will be lots of Testosterone sword-shaming here" ~ Kenfucius

  18. #18
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    Very relative thing based on the trails available to you, IMO.
    Makes me think of another guy and I riding the same route a few weeks ago, though not together. We were both on 29ers, with different versions of the same tires, but the similarities ended there.
    He was on an "enduro" bike with 11 speed drivetrain, 150mm rear travel and 160mm fork. I was on a singlespeed hardtail with 120mm fork. It was easy to see how and where we each made time over the other, because he both started and finished a few minutes before me, and we never saw each other on the trail, only in the parking lot before and after.
    I've got no way of comparing our skill or fitness levels, so it's all conjecture, but just from looking at the bikes, it would seem obvious that I made up significant time on the climbs, while he was much faster on the longer, and sometimes very rough, downhills, likely with some give and take on the rolling hills and flowy sections.
    No doubt how we experienced the ride was very different(pretty sure I was a lot more beat up!), but the bottom line is that we basically did the same ride in the same amount of time on very different bikes. I was decidedly "underbiked" in some places, while he was "overbiked" in others.
    My thought on that is not that our bikes were equally versatile, but that, for the trails local to us, they were equally handicapped.
    I can't help but believe that if either of us had been on a 130mm f/r trail bike(a popular choice in this area, and for good reason-same reason I find myself looking at bikes like the Fuel EX, Devinci Django, etc.), there would have been a noticeable difference in our finish times...'cause that would, by definition, be a much more "versatile" bike.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott2MTB View Post
    J.. I think that "versatile" is rooted in function. The swiss army knife is more a versatile knife than a butcher knife. It's not better though, especially if you're a butcher.
    What is the point of versatility if not to define "better"? There is always more versatile and less and in the context here more versatile is better. And you showed quite clearly the need for context. A swiss army knife is a jack of all trades and master of none. If I am on camping trip and only can have one tool a swiss army knife is pretty versatile. However if I am the kitchen cooking dinner a swiss army knife is pretty useless. About the only good thing is that it has knife and can opener. Sure I could cook with in a pinch, but is not the most versatile kitchen knife now is it?
    Joe
    '12 Santa Cruz Highball 29", '13 Santa Cruz Solo 27.5",Vassago Verhauen SS 29" XC, AM, blah blah blah.. I just ride.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JoePAz View Post
    What is the point of versatility if not to define "better"? There is always more versatile and less and in the context here more versatile is better. And you showed quite clearly the need for context. A swiss army knife is a jack of all trades and master of none. If I am on camping trip and only can have one tool a swiss army knife is pretty versatile. However if I am the kitchen cooking dinner a swiss army knife is pretty useless. About the only good thing is that it has knife and can opener. Sure I could cook with in a pinch, but is not the most versatile kitchen knife now is it?
    Joe, I think you're hung up on semantics. Why does versatile need to be qualitative, and define better? Better is a generic, and loaded word. Are you "better" than me because you currently have an SS 29er and I don't? I'm sure you're probably more fit, so you may be better at riding it, but are you "better" than me because you are? To me, the way you're using the word "better" suggests a black & white style of thinking, of wanting to see uses as "bad" and "good."

    A versatile bike is not better than another style of bike, it's just capable of a wider range of applications. In that sense, you might say it's better than an HT SS at being a "one bike" quiver but of course there are lots of caveats and disclaimers, as compromises must be made and the rider taken into account. So, I'd rather not try and categorize it that way. I'd rather just get a range of real rider opinions on how a particular bike compared to another. Comparative statements like, "I didn't like it because I couldn't bunny hop very high on it compared to my 5010" and "Even though it was a short travel 29er with 120mm of rear suspension, the 5 foot drop felt easier than on my 6" travel 27.5 bike" are more useful than statements like, "X bike is better than Y bike". We can leave the broad exclamations of how this year's bike is better than last year's bike to the sales people and bike journalists.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott2MTB View Post
    ... Comparative statements like, "I didn't like it because I couldn't bunny hop very high on it compared to my 5010" and "Even though it was a short travel 29er with 120mm of rear suspension, the 5 foot drop felt easier than on my 6" travel 27.5 bike" are more useful than statements like, "X bike is better than Y bike".
    Again.... It comes down to perspective. I don't care how high bike can bunny hop. That is not important to me. I don't care about how bike handles a 5ft drop since I won't do that. I can tell you my geared Highball 29er climbs very well and rolls over rocks very well. This very handy when climbing. Steep technical climb on that bike is much easier than my SC Solo. I gain little climbing ablity with the rear suspension and lose out due to roll over being an issue. Downhill the extra suspension makes up for lack of rollover so I can go faster. Now alot of this due to my skill levels and my climbing style. As for the SS 29er? That is different beast. Descends like my geared HT29er, but climbing is different given it has just one gear and I don't think that is relevant to this discussion.


    When you say versatility what the hell do you mean? I mean something I can use for many things reasonably and do reasonably well. A downhill bike is good for one thing and one thing only so I not what I consider versatile. You may consider a 29er HT not versatile since it is "just and XC race bike". I consider it very versatile since I can ride anything I want on it. I view my SC Solo and SS 29er as "not versatile" since I find them good for certain terrain and ride styles and not as good at doing everything (everything given what I ride and the way ride it) as the geared HT.

    I KNOW most people won't agree and I am ok with that. My riding style/goals are different from others and it shapes by view of what a versatile mtn bike is.
    Joe
    '12 Santa Cruz Highball 29", '13 Santa Cruz Solo 27.5",Vassago Verhauen SS 29" XC, AM, blah blah blah.. I just ride.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 06HokieMTB View Post
    According to NS bikes, a 140/130 29er with aggressive trail/AM geometry is akin to a 150mm 650b.

    "In fact we all concluded that it rides like a 150mm 27.5" bike even though it actually has way less travel."
    https://www.pinkbike.com/news/ns-sna...1--review.html

    I would be comfortable suggesting that Santa Cruz thinks the same thing with their 135mm 29er Hightower and the 150mm 650b Bronson.
    Probably some truth to that. I moved from Transition Covert with heirloom wheels to a Remedy 29 and it has more confidence than the 26r ever had with some stuff.

    I've also ridden same model Trek with the different sized wheels but same model tires. They both handle well. Getting used to or accepting axle height and not really wheel size or geometry was my lesson or epiphany.

    My suggestion is delay gratification and try bikes on trails. There are so many good ones.

    If I got a bias or preference after lots of testing and some rentals it was actually for Trek's "Reaktiv" shock more than anything about wheel size. It's is firm like some linkage types when you hammer but not soft or flabby when you pump. It's worked without creaks or problems with more miles on it than associates who got Santa Cruz, Intense and Specialized bikes. I don't know about Santa Cruz or Intense but my customer service experience with our Farley having a problem was WAY better than Specialized when my Enduro had a problem.
    ƃuoɹʍ llɐ ʇno əɯɐɔ ʇɐɥʇ

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