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  1. #1
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    New 29er build, teach me about frames

    I am starting a new 29er build which will also be my first bike build. I have picked up a set of Sun Ringle Black Flag Comp wheels and a 120mm Reba fork so far. Next thing on the list to find is a frame. Someone on the local Craigslist is offering a Diamondback Overdrive frame in the right size for a great price. I checked the geometry, it is very similar to other frames I am looking at. I know this bike in its original life would be considered a very entry level bike... however is there any reason besides the name I should avoid it to build up my bike. I want to build a good bike, but I don't see a reason to spend a lot on the frame, plenty of other places to put that cash, especially since my plan is to pick up a hardtail frame for now to get the bike built sooner but I hope to save up within a year or two for a full squish frame and switch over to that.

  2. #2
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    I've been hesitant to 29" wheels for so long but I'm learning what makes a good handling 29er on paper, lol. that bike looks good - it's a little cookie cutter meaning that they're not doing any thing exceptionally different with geo, but if it's a good price and with a little over forking which you're doing I bet it handles well. I think the website is completely misleading as it says it has 15.4" chain stays?! Too short to even fit a wheel in there, let alone a front derailleur! however further reading in the geo chart admits that the center to center chain stay actually measures 440 mm which is way more realistic with a standard seat tube w/ no crazy off set or butting.

    Don't get wrapped up in the name brand, it's probably a Taiwanese welded alloy frame which is what a Niner is or any other major brand. I was surprised at their Mason offering - a 140mm 29er hardtail is going to go up against the other "fun" and short 29ers that I know of like Stickels and more affordably the Canfield Yellis and Nimble Nines...

    I will say that if you're looking for FUN check out the Canfield Yelli Screamy, I know someone selling a medium frame and fork... great bikes at really nice pricing...

    That said that Overdrive looks fine. It's more XC oriented but with that 120 fork I bet it works just fine.
    My one says BRAP!

  3. #3
    Flow like water
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    Have you started a list of parts you will put on your new 29er?
    I am building a Karate Monkey now. I started with a used frame from a member here at a good price. The total is going to run over $900, even with me looking for discounts everywhere and getting entry-level components.

    I have a Diamondback Response, but would not consider hanging that set of parts on it. Perhaps you could check out frames from On-One. They are not too expensive, but get some good comments on these forums.
    "Head injuries are pretty high-consequence" - AndrwSwitch

  4. #4
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    Thank you for the feedback DavyRay, I really do appreciate it. I am working on a component list but mostly I decided that I want at least SLX/X7 level parts, anything above that that I can score for a great deal is just gravy. I am still trying to decide if I want to go 1x or 2x on the gearing. As far as the frame, I looked at a bunch of them new - On One Scandal 29er, Airborne Goblin, Access XCL, etc. The Airborne Goblin seems to be the best bang for your buck as far as a new frame goes but I plan to buy used if I can find one.

    I do want to ask if you would elaborate on this statement below, you say you wouldn't put the parts on the diamondback frame. I am curious what your reasoning it.

    Quote Originally Posted by DavyRay View Post
    I have a Diamondback Response, but would not consider hanging that set of parts on is.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by plume View Post
    Don't get wrapped up in the name brand, it's probably a Taiwanese welded alloy frame which is what a Niner is or any other major brand.
    That's like saying that all aluminum frames are the same because they are all made from aluminum. There is a huge difference between a Niner and a cheap Diamondback. Different alloys, manufacturing processes, quality standards, and designs.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by azorr View Post
    Thank you for the feedback DavyRay, I really do appreciate it. I am working on a component list but mostly I decided that I want at least SLX/X7 level parts, anything above that that I can score for a great deal is just gravy. I am still trying to decide if I want to go 1x or 2x on the gearing. As far as the frame, I looked at a bunch of them new - On One Scandal 29er, Airborne Goblin, Access XCL, etc. The Airborne Goblin seems to be the best bang for your buck as far as a new frame goes but I plan to buy used if I can find one.

    I do want to ask if you would elaborate on this statement below, you say you wouldn't put the parts on the diamondback frame. I am curious what your reasoning it.
    I am confident that my 2007 Response Sport aluminum frame is quite sturdy. It is also heavy. I have no confidence that the geometry is really good for general XC trails. I lack the experience to know that. I am building a Karate Monkey rigid as I think I know what I will end up with.

    I am finally getting the hang of the gearing and the weight distribution on my six year old bike. I have no idea about the more recent Diamondback models.

    Edit: So, you already have wheels and a fork, and are looking at a used complete bike to start with? Go for it!

    You have little to lose there. I think bikes and guitars are a lot alike. You simply are not going to get the right one for you the first time out. And if you did, you would not know it. Ya gotta kiss a few princesses to find the right *****.
    Last edited by DavyRay; 01-20-2013 at 02:16 PM. Reason: Re-read Original Post
    "Head injuries are pretty high-consequence" - AndrwSwitch

  7. #7
    turtles make me hot
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    I ran into a kid on the trail last year riding a DB Overdrive and noticed it had a Reba and nice wheels on it. I asked if it came that way. ( I knew it did not) He said he was riding beyond the limits of the stock parts and being a broke college student, built what he had.
    He said he had nothing bad to say about the frame.
    I like turtles

  8. #8
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    I'm a big fan of steel frames. If your budget is tight, I would go for On One Inbred. Around $200, and I'm considering it for my next build (I'm 220 lb on rigid, so I'm very thorough when it comes to choosing a new frame).

    If you want "high end" frames, there are a lot of websites and shops that sell older Niner Air 9 frames for around $500-600.

    Components > Frames > Mountain Bike frames | Jenson USA Online Bike Shop 2011 Air 9 for $400, 2011 One 9 for $490. Not gonna get any cheaper than those, although they are only in XL sizes.
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  9. #9
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    Thank you very much to everyone that has weighed in so far. Just to clarify, I am not getting a complete bike, just a bare frame. I need an XL (6'3', 230lb) which is what this frame is. I am currently riding a 2006 Haro V4. I liked the idea of an inbred for a while but to be honest I am happy with the feel of my current aluminum hardtail so I don't want the weight penalty of a steel frame.

    My reasons for building a new bike are that my current ride is a little small, its only a large. It also weighs 35lb which for a 26" hardtail seems like a lot. Its also starting to wear out, and rather than replace parts of the bike I would rather upgrade. Plus I am a tinkerer and the process of building a bike sounds like fun. Oh, and I turn 29 this week, so it must be fate that I need a 29er

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by azorr View Post
    I am starting a new 29er build which will also be my first bike build. I have picked up a set of Sun Ringle Black Flag Comp wheels and a 120mm Reba fork so far. Next thing on the list to find is a frame. Someone on the local Craigslist is offering a Diamondback Overdrive frame in the right size for a great price. I checked the geometry, it is very similar to other frames I am looking at. I know this bike in its original life would be considered a very entry level bike... however is there any reason besides the name I should avoid it to build up my bike. I want to build a good bike, but I don't see a reason to spend a lot on the frame, plenty of other places to put that cash, especially since my plan is to pick up a hardtail frame for now to get the bike built sooner but I hope to save up within a year or two for a full squish frame and switch over to that.
    take a look at the chinese carbon frames. a 3lb frame will be around $350. Geometry is pretty generic

  11. #11
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    That would be very cool to have a carbon frame but I am not careful enough to own one I don't think. I tend to crash...

    I am pretty set on a basic aluminum hardtail while I save up for a full suspension. I was just wondering if anyone had any reason that an Airborne Goblin or On One Scandal or similar would be significantly better than a Diamondback Overdrive frame, enough to be worth 4x the price of the Diamondback.

    Quote Originally Posted by goodmojo View Post
    take a look at the chinese carbon frames. a 3lb frame will be around $350. Geometry is pretty generic

  12. #12
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    ^^My only concern would be not knowing the previous life of an aluminum bike.
    Aluminum bikes don't last as long as steel and usually can't be fixed.
    Even if the frame was cherry I wouldn't buy it off you for example. (big guy/longer fork than design specs.)
    that being said, getting a frame for a song, makes it easier to think of as disposable.
    what about this frame: 2011 Access XCL 9er Frame - Mountain Bike Frames
    I bet it goes on sale often,

  13. #13
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    I had close to the same concerns. I cracked am aluminum jamis frame, so when i was looking for a new frame my concern was for it to be strong enough. So i looked at 4130 chr frames, but settled on the niner EMD9 frame

  14. #14
    turtles make me hot
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    I broke a 2008 Stumpjumper FSR frame. They warranteed it with an 09 frame which was identical in the spot where it broke. I was sure I was going to break the new frame as well, but it's been fine.

    I guess it's just one of those things.
    I like turtles

  15. #15
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    Well, I had decided that I was probably going to get it, since it was only going to cost me $40. However when I tried to make arrangements the seller stopped responding so I guess that is out. To be honest I am now reconsidering the On One Inbred 29er... have been reading a couple of good reviews about it and I really love the Orange color it comes in. Going to head over to the On One forum to ask about build weights to see what people are getting them to.

    Thanks again all for your advice!

  16. #16
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    I have an on-one inbred 29er, and I love it. Don't worry about the weight, my bike is very light. I love the geometry, it is a great "general" geometry.

  17. #17
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    I have an on-one inbred 29er, and I love it. Don't worry about the weight, my bike is very light. I love the geometry, it is a great "general" geometry.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by ajkirton View Post
    I have an on-one inbred 29er, and I love it. Don't worry about the weight, my bike is very light. I love the geometry, it is a great "general" geometry.
    How much do you weigh and do you ride it rigid (with On One carbon fork) or suspension fork?

    I read somewhere a while ago that the wishbone seat stay is not the best idea for clydes. And now that I'm considering it, I can't find where I read it. I'm 220 lb and ride somewhat aggressively with plenty of air time, and I'm considering between Inbred and KM (Inbred's cheaper, but I know KM is plenty sturdy for me).
    Ghisallo Wheels

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  19. #19
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    I am a clyde, and I ride it rigid with an exotic fork. I am also running it single speed, and I do alot of jumps as well. I grew up racing bmx, so I treat my bike like a BMX bike.

  20. #20
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    just search and try and find a broken Inbred frame. They are very very few and far between.

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