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  1. #1
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    Is 26er a dying breed?

    I don't want to start a heated discussion. Just out of curiosity trying to find out what you guys think.
    I own a FS 29er, FS 26er converted to a 650b and have been following the fast 650b development for last 2 years.
    The current trend in the industry makes me believe the 26er bikes are becoming less popular. Just look at some manufacturers, Intense and enve both said the 26er is dead. So many small and mid-sized producers replacing them with 650b and 29". Forks, wheels, tires, almost everything new is aimed at 650b.
    It's only question of time when one of the 3 big bike companies will jump on the wagon.
    The speed with which the trend is running is astonishing.
    It took The 29" revolution to fully kick in 3x longer, at least.
    So what do you think?
    Where will we be in 2 years and do you think you will like the future?
    Last edited by jazzanova; 02-03-2013 at 07:53 PM.

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    There's about 50 threads that discuss this question.

  3. #3
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    more choices more better

  4. #4
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    29ers seem to have eaten up the XC market, and for good reason. They don't seem to have much penetration into longer travel disciplines.
    650b doesn't seem like much of a change from 26, but you can't sell someone something they've already got, can you?

  5. #5
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    This is the most objective side by side comparison I've found and the testers preferred 26 over 27.5 and 29.

    Opinion: 26 vs 27.5 vs 29-inch Wheels - Pinkbike

  6. #6
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    Re: Is 26er a dying breed?

    When I was shopping for my second bike I was basically told to bypass 26 completely since its only a matter of time before they are out of product lines. However I think the reason the smaller companies are embracing the change to the new wheel sizes is to corner the market before the "big bike companies" can revise. My .02 might now be worth much but it makes sense in my head.

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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Simpledesign View Post
    When I was shopping for my second bike I was basically told to bypass 26 completely since its only a matter of time before they are out of product lines. However I think the reason the smaller companies are embracing the change to the new wheel sizes is to corner the market before the "big bike companies" can revise. My .02 might now be worth much but it makes sense in my head.

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    I agree, I think you are on to something here. The small companies are trying to jump onto the bandwagon before it's a bandwagon, if that makes sense... lol
    Buy a f-ing bike maybe you wouldn't be fat

  8. #8
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    I will stay with the failing 26" wheel size. One day the "IN" thing will to be in the place that I have never left.
    All this hype is great for the sales of bikes and the bike companies are loving it.

    Read what MBA has to say about 26 vs 27.5 vs29 FS bikes. Watch Pinkbikes video on this subject. Interesting to say the least.

  9. #9
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    Re: Is 26er a dying breed?

    The bottom line is always going to be "ride what you like"

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    I'm not one to follow the crowds, I'll be countersociety and keep my 26in wheels. It will just make the 26ers more exclusive and people will say "whoa that guys on a 26er" instead of "oh look another 29er"

  11. #11
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    I have 5 bikes all 26" except a 29" hardtail. Guess what bike I'm going to be selling, the 29er. I just find the small wheels more fun to ride.

  12. #12
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    Right now we are sticking with the 26". Looking for a bike for my wife and it is a 26". Right now I feel it works fine.

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    Quote Originally Posted by fuenstock View Post
    I have 5 bikes all 26" except a 29" hardtail. Guess what bike I'm going to be selling, the 29er. I just find the small wheels more fun to ride.
    YES!!!

    I swear, when I join in on some of the big group rides, I'm the ONLY 26er rider. my first REAL mtb was a 29er but I sold it to fun a full sus trance x (26er) and I love it. I did, however, try to sell it once but got ridiculous lowball offers and just decided to give up selling it until I get some more races under my belt and figure out exactly what I want. The bike is fun as hell and I do borrow my friends 29ers (fs and ht) sometimes and it definitely feels faster on these smooth xc trails but its just not as fun, you know? I can definitely get the trance in the air a lot easier too. I lack fluid cornering ability so they are about the same (
    to me) on the 2 wheel sizes.

  14. #14
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    I enjoy my brand new 26er, just like all my other mountain bikes, that have all had 26 inch wheels. Might a larger wheel smooth out the root gardens around here, yeah but at a sacrifice for corning ability and railing berms. And when people start passing me left and right when I am in good shape on my 26er I might think something is wrong with em, but right now I'm the one passing the 29ers out on the trail with my oldschool antiquated troglodytic caveman wheels.

    My wheels aren't holding me back, so why do I need bigger wheels?

    Tire technology has also gotten to the point that I have more grip than I used to, which means less drifting. Taking a corner with a nice two wheel drift without inducing it with your brakes is fun, a larger wheel would just make that even more difficult.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by fuenstock View Post
    I have 5 bikes all 26" except a 29" hardtail. Guess what bike I'm going to be selling, the 29er. I just find the small wheels more fun to ride.
    Exactly. Smaller wheels are more fun to ride. Period. If you like to put in miles on what is basically a dirt road, then go with 29" wheels. If you like to actually ride the bike rather than tag along for the ride, 26/27.5" is for you. I have a big-wheeled bike. It's a road bike.

  16. #16
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    Tons of people are going back to 26ers lately. The big companies are still churning out tons of new high end 26ers as well, and they're still the majority of bikes sold. They're not going anywhere.

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    I have to ask, in the wake of recent threads on other forums: Is this thread serious?

  18. #18
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    I own both (though in two different breeds) and I enjoy both. I had a 26" HT before my 29er Stumpy and would never go back to a 26" HT for a "XC" bike... With that said, I would NEVER get a 29er "AM" or long travel bike. They are not as responsive or as durrable as a good 26". 26" isn't going anywhere, anyone that says otherwise is a fool. 29er wheels simply don't fit everyone, or every style of riding.
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  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ray Raton View Post
    I have to ask, in the wake of recent threads on other forums: Is this thread serious?
    I'd like to see the mods put all the no right answer threads in one spot.

    29Vs26

    Flat vs clips

    Dropper vs none

    Carbon vs aluminun

    Then sticky them all in the beginners section. We can have 200pages of clips vs flats for people to read.

  20. #20
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    Re: Is 26er a dying breed?

    So which one is it, clips or flats!?


  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by kikoraa View Post
    So which one is it, clips or flats!?

    one of each
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  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Simpledesign View Post
    one of each
    Pedal bikes are a dying breed.

  23. #23
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    Probably.
    No, YOU don't understand. You're making an ass of yourself for all of eternity.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by cerebroside View Post
    Pedal bikes are a dying breed.
    Thats truly AM! Badass
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  25. #25
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    ^ try to imagine a wheelie on that thing.

  26. #26
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    I'm picturing what it'll look like when bikes take over the world...
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  27. #27
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    They are certainly taking over my world.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fuglio View Post
    I'd like to see the mods put all the no right answer threads in one spot.

    29Vs26

    Flat vs clips

    Dropper vs none

    Carbon vs aluminun

    Then sticky them all in the beginners section. We can have 200pages of clips vs flats for people to read.
    You think 200 pages would be enough? For those of us who have been trail riding forever, like me (well over 20+years), seeing the same questions, over and over, and over....etc. can be trying. Sometimes humor is a good outlet to that experience, but I gotta remind myself that a good percentage of the askers who come to this site, with those questions, are beginners, and they ARE seriously asking them.

    That said, I don't feel too bad about having just a tiny bit of fun at their expense, from time to time.

    I mean, ultimately, riding a bike had better be, at least in part ( a LARGE part, IMO ), about having fun, no?

  29. #29
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    Ive owned FS and HT 29ers. I sold both of them and went back to a FS 26" bike and haven't been happier. In fact, I was so happy I even bought a more extinct bike, a 26" hard tail. I love it so much I might even sell my FS 26" bike. This is so taboo in the bike industry today that someone might need to go to confession after reading my post.

  30. #30
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    I love my 29ers both the HT and the FS and plan on sticking with them.
    Don't think they are better than 26ers, just different. Both wheel sizes seem to have their advantages and disadvantages so it really boils down to a personal preference.

    As far as them taking over, I think there will be a temporary shift.
    I certainly see more 29ers on the trails than 26ers but I guess eventually that shift will balance out as time goes on. For now, it is just the shiny new toy on the market.

    I will say though that this argument will never be settled just like the clipless vs. flats argument.
    Just stick it in granny and start grinding.

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    There is clearly an answer for which size is better. It just depends on the rider and the terrain. Asking random people which they prefer without any background info is pointless. Same with pedals. There are clear answers for most people, if they're honest with their riding style and terrain.

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    personal preference. own both, ride both, love both

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by slimat99 View Post
    This is the most objective side by side comparison I've found and the testers preferred 26 over 27.5 and 29.

    Opinion: 26 vs 27.5 vs 29-inch Wheels - Pinkbike
    ... agreed ... the most objective comparison I've seen to date. Thanks for that!

    I don't know about 26ers being a dying breed ... but I can say my LBS does just about everything to steer buyers toward 29ers over 26ers. Not only do they all ride and prefer them ... they stock more of them. As far as 27.5's ... they have no interest nor do they see any point of stocking anything 27.5.
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    Quote Originally Posted by kjlued View Post
    I love my 29ers both the HT and the FS and plan on sticking with them.
    Don't think they are better than 26ers, just different. Both wheel sizes seem to have their advantages and disadvantages so it really boils down to a personal preference.

    As far as them taking over, I think there will be a temporary shift.
    I certainly see more 29ers on the trails than 26ers but I guess eventually that shift will balance out as time goes on. For now, it is just the shiny new toy on the market.

    I will say though that this argument will never be settled just like the clipless vs. flats argument.
    I expect that someday the PTB will convince the buyer that riding a 20" bike is the best way to stay young ... Rinse, Lather, Repeat

  35. #35
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    Any invention becomes a "dying breed" the day it is made and sold -- everything becomes obsolete eventually. That said, if even the 26" wheel is eventually eliminated, there are so many thousands of 26" bikes out there, I have little concern that there will still be parts and such available on the market. If I were buying a bike today and found one I liked that was a 26", I wouldn't hesitate to buy it.

    However, I wouldn't hesitate to explore the new 27.5" AM offerings, either. I read an interesting article interviewing several prominent bike makers, and their opinion was almost universally that the 27.5 wheel was a sweet spot for AM bikes, and that is where most of them saw their companies headed.
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  36. #36
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    As someone who has both a 26er and 29er I can honestly say for the average weekend warrior out there, the number of beers you had the night before will have a far greater impact on your ride than a 3" or 1.5" diameter difference in your wheels.
    “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did." Mark Twain

  37. #37
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    the only really dying with all of this are skillsets. skillsets that are learned easier and quicker thru smaller wheels. bunnyhopping, jhop, manuals, pump and jump that taller obstacles require is easier with my 26 and flats! better yet get on 20s to progress even more skills. bmxican4life

  38. #38
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    Just think if 27.5 was the standard and 26" was being touted as the future.

    Marking would have the AM market drooling: laterally stiffer for any given weight rim, increased agility, increased durability, jumps and tricks easier, decreased weight where it really counts: lighter rims, spokes and tires.

  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by slimat99 View Post
    Just think if 27.5 was the standard and 26" was being touted as the future.

    Marking would have the AM market drooling: laterally stiffer for any given weight rim, increased agility, increased durability, jumps and tricks easier, decreased weight where it really counts: lighter rims, spokes and tires.
    The industry will try and phase out 26", then 4 years later introduce the new 26" as "retro".

  40. #40
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    I think just like the Pinkbike comparison mentions, is that it's just about rider preference and terrain. There are some areas that a specific wheel size excels on. Couple that with a feel that certain riders just like, and it all comes down to the individual. I know for around here, I've never ridden a 29er that felt better than a 26 full suspension. But that might be a completely different story for another person or on different trails. If I rode smooth hardpack trails most of the time, I'd probably go buy a CF 29er hardtail.

    I think all the wheel sizes have their merits, but for AM riding I don't see 29ers taking over, or 650b. There will likely be all wheel sizes available for quite some time, and people should ride what they like the best.
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    I say we should all just get on our whatever sized wheeled bikes and ride them.


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  42. #42
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    This is the gospel truth.

  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Douger-1 View Post
    As someone who has both a 26er and 29er I can honestly say for the average weekend warrior out there, the number of beers you had the night before will have a far greater impact on your ride than a 3" or 1.5" diameter difference in your wheels.
    The truth shall set you free. Amen brother.

  44. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by Douger-1 View Post
    As someone who has both a 26er and 29er I can honestly say for the average weekend warrior out there, the number of beers you had the night before will have a far greater impact on your ride than a 3" or 1.5" diameter difference in your wheels.
    I've only done a 2 mile lap on a 29er (carbon Tallboy) one time, but that was more or less my impression as well. Of course, the bike felt quite different than my Enduro, but it was hard to tell what was due to the wheels. The Tallboy was a nice bike, to be sure, but I can't say the difference was mindblowing.
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  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by cerebroside View Post
    29ers seem to have eaten up the XC market, and for good reason. They don't seem to have much penetration into longer travel disciplines.
    650b doesn't seem like much of a change from 26, but you can't sell someone something they've already got, can you?
    Quote Originally Posted by One Pivot View Post
    Tons of people are going back to 26ers lately. The big companies are still churning out tons of new high end 26ers as well, and they're still the majority of bikes sold. They're not going anywhere.
    These^^^

    29er's are for tall, lanky XC racers.

    26 and 650b are for all other riders. And, like someone said, if 26ers are stopped being sold anytime soon, give it 4 years. They'll be the "new thing" again.

  46. #46
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    I have a theory!

    Makers are always trying to make money right, and since there are government agencies in europe actually testing durability of parts and frames and such they can't actually make stuff that self destructs anymore so now insted they try to convince people they need this "whatever the new popular wheel size is" is the **** and everything else is outdated. And will soon disappear.

    29er is 700c and has been around for ****ing AGES.
    650b is an OLD french standard that someone just revived from the dead to make money out of, not talking thew enthusiasts here.
    And 26ers where OLD Kids bikes, to evade some tax that was put on adults bikes.

    Its all old ****, and it comes in waves, its a never ending cycle. None of them will disappear anytime soon.

    the bottom line here, is treks, speshs and giants bottom line thats what matters.
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    LOL

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    Get one in all three flavors--and a mini to boot. That way you don't feel left out, and you have an excuse to expand the fleet.

    I love my 26" bikes--but it's time I start looking for a 29er. Maybe a sweet carbon off-brand with a rigid carbon fork. Yum.

  49. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by slimat99 View Post
    Just think if 27.5 was the standard and 26" was being touted as the future.

    Marking would have the AM market drooling: laterally stiffer for any given weight rim, increased agility, increased durability, jumps and tricks easier, decreased weight where it really counts: lighter rims, spokes and tires.
    This is just so damn true. There would of course be a few sceptics who would be questioning whether that very small decrease in wheel diameter could possibly make such a big difference; but then again their comments would be immediately shot down by all the marketing people, as well as the people on MTB forums who had converted their 650B bikes to 26ers and claimed it was a totally different bike - so much more agile, so much quicker, etc.

    I really like the fact that 650B exists - it gives us all another option; and it probably does have some small advantages over 26" (as well as some small disadvanatages) - but your post was so spot on about the extreme level of marketing BS and hype that surrounds any new product in MTB that basically represents a small step forward, rather than the huge leap forward that it is claimed to be.

  50. #50
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    29/650b/26 < sack size

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    Agreed. The fun and play factor is higher on 26". I liken it to seeking out a manual transmission when buying a car vs. an automatic. I don't need the trail leveled for me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jazzanova View Post
    I don't want to start a heated discussion. Just out of curiosity trying to find out what you guys think.
    I own a FS 29er, FS 26er converted to a 650b and have been following the fast 650b development for last 2 years.
    The current trend in the industry makes me believe the 26er bikes are becoming less popular. Just look at some manufacturers, Intense and enve both said the 26er is dead. So many small and mid-sized producers replacing them with 650b and 29". Forks, wheels, tires, almost everything new is aimed at 650b.
    It's only question of time when one of the 3 big bike companies will jump on the wagon.
    The speed with which the trend is running is astonishing.
    It took The 29" revolution to fully kick in 3x longer, at least.
    So what do you think?
    Where will we be in 2 years and do you think you will like the future?
    It seems that all serious XC racers are on 29ers, they just roll better than 26ers, so that segment is getting sown up. If the enduro racers start winning on 27.5ers then that will spell the end of the 26er segment. Perhaps the only viable future for 26ers is the downhill bike.

    26er will be around for a long time yet though but mostly in beginner packages only. Maybe a few niche manufacturers still waving the flag.

    Rocky Mtn and Scott have fully embraced the 27.5 market.

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    Note to self: sell my near new Merida One-Twenty before it becomes worthless.

  54. #54
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    Maybe the recent fatbike craze will spark an interest in bigger tire diameters.

    I am starting to think that instead of 650b, I would rather ride some 2.7" tires on 26" wheels, if they can be made lighweight enough, say under 900g with decent knobs. And 30mm or so inner width rim. Think of around 15psi, tubeless with a bit of sealant.

    So we can buy 650b frames and forks and fit them with baloon tires.

    There always be something new, but it is still a bike. My current 26" stable rides great and I am not getting rid of them.

  55. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by stepitup_onenotch View Post
    It seems that all serious XC racers are on 29ers
    World champion is on 650b. But I, for one, truly, deeply do not care what pro's run. I ain't frigging racing the clock every time out.

    No racers ride fatbikes, but they are fun and getting popular. It is not about racing.

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    I personally love the 26 inch bikes but im looking forward to getting a 29er

  57. #57
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    soon it will all be 36ers, fat 36ers and the new rivaling standards 39 and 37,5/6500b
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    Specialized sucks ass.

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    Quote Originally Posted by stepitup_onenotch View Post
    It seems that all serious XC racers are on 29ers, they just roll better than 26ers, so that segment is getting sown up. If the enduro racers start winning on 27.5ers then that will spell the end of the 26er segment. Perhaps the only viable future for 26ers is the downhill bike.

    26er will be around for a long time yet though but mostly in beginner packages only. Maybe a few niche manufacturers still waving the flag.

    Rocky Mtn and Scott have fully embraced the 27.5 market.
    I don't see any market for a 27.5 or 29" dirt jumper.
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  59. #59
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    Is 26er a dying breed?

    Yup, 26 is what I roll and won't change. Just another fad like MC Hammer pants or Kris's Kross with wearing their pants backwards.

  60. #60
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    For XC racing, I'd say the 26 is on its way out.

    Being fazed out of other disciplines of MTB? Very doubtful.
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    I love 26ers and 29ers equally. I wish there was something between these sizes. I bet it would be the best of both worlds!

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    You know I was out riding the other day and I started thinking. "Man I am the pefect specimen of a mountain biker. Perfect in everyway physically and mentally. There is no longer room for improvement. I am a perfect 200lbs weekend warrior with a little beer gut and the only way I can improve is to start changing the sizes of components on my bike. I would like the following.

    - A 17.5 mm TA for the front because 20m is too beefy and way too heavy and the 15mm flexes way too much.
    - A 173.25 mm crank arm. Im my experience this is the perfect blend of rotational performance and rock clearance.
    - A 13.476 mm TA for the rear with a 147.5 spacing because I need that little extra stiffness to make me climb better.
    - A 31.1625 mm diameter seatpost because the 31.6 is just too heavy and slows me down.
    - A 2" top and 1.75" bottom reverse tapered headtube/steerer because the current 1.5" tapered systems are hard to turn and the 2" upper diameter adds the perfect amount of torsional stiffness without compromising rotaional friction.

    That is all for now.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Douger-1 View Post
    You know I was out riding the other day and I started thinking. "Man I am the pefect specimen of a mountain biker. Perfect in everyway physically and mentally. There is no longer room for improvement. I am a perfect 200lbs weekend warrior with a little beer gut and the only way I can improve is to start changing the sizes of components on my bike. I would like the following.

    - A 17.5 mm TA for the front because 20m is too beefy and way too heavy and the 15mm flexes way too much.
    - A 173.25 mm crank arm. Im my experience this is the perfect blend of rotational performance and rock clearance.
    - A 13.476 mm TA for the rear with a 147.5 spacing because I need that little extra stiffness to make me climb better.
    - A 31.1625 mm diameter seatpost because the 31.6 is just too heavy and slows me down.
    - A 2" top and 1.75" bottom reverse tapered headtube/steerer because the current 1.5" tapered systems are hard to turn and the 2" upper diameter adds the perfect amount of torsional stiffness without compromising rotaional friction.

    That is all for now.
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  64. #64
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    Re: Is 26er a dying breed?

    Quote Originally Posted by Douger-1 View Post
    You know I was out riding the other day and I started thinking. "Man I am the pefect specimen of a mountain biker. Perfect in everyway physically and mentally. There is no longer room for improvement. I am a perfect 200lbs weekend warrior with a little beer gut and the only way I can improve is to start changing the sizes of components on my bike. I would like the following.

    - A 17.5 mm TA for the front because 20m is too beefy and way too heavy and the 15mm flexes way too much.
    - A 173.25 mm crank arm. Im my experience this is the perfect blend of rotational performance and rock clearance.
    - A 13.476 mm TA for the rear with a 147.5 spacing because I need that little extra stiffness to make me climb better.
    - A 31.1625 mm diameter seatpost because the 31.6 is just too heavy and slows me down.
    - A 2" top and 1.75" bottom reverse tapered headtube/steerer because the current 1.5" tapered systems are hard to turn and the 2" upper diameter adds the perfect amount of torsional stiffness without compromising rotaional friction.

    That is all for now.
    Great post, I agree completely.

  65. #65
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ray Raton View Post
    You think 200 pages would be enough? For those of us who have been trail riding forever, like me (well over 20+years), seeing the same questions, over and over, and over....etc. can be trying. Sometimes humor is a good outlet to that experience, but I gotta remind myself that a good percentage of the askers who come to this site, with those questions, are beginners, and they ARE seriously asking them.

    That said, I don't feel too bad about having just a tiny bit of fun at their expense, from time to time.

    I mean, ultimately, riding a bike had better be, at least in part ( a LARGE part, IMO ), about having fun, no?
    Lol.
    what bike should I buy? my budget is $2000
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  66. #66
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    Quote Originally Posted by dbabuser View Post
    I don't see any market for a 27.5 or 29" dirt jumper.
    Or slopestyle. And 26" is already considered a bit of a handful with trials. Those disciplines are never going to even experiment with larger wheels; there's no point.

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    RE: Is 26er a dying breed?

    I xc race a 26er and don't plan on changing any time soon.

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    who cares about the marketing BS? im thrilled there are so many options. im sure when i bust my 26" rim in a 4 years ill be able to pick up a nice replacement. maybe really cheap.

    i already know that 29ers are not for me. i can perfectly see how they would be great for certain types of trails. who cares what works best for others?

    27.5" AM FS bike? mmmmmmmm

  69. #69
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    29er DH tires in production, look out! Intense and Trek have 29er DH protos. Wouldn't be surprised if Spec had something as well. 650b is already in the international pro DH ranks.

    Should that make 26" fans worried? No. Normal/average people cling to familiarity, and many are familiar with 26". Skilled and talented folk adapt quickly to many things and like to accept the challenge of defying what people think are the limits of something. If anything, I wanna see how 29er DH bikes do trying to clear the big DH track doubles, which were built with 26" bikes in mind. Wonder if there will be sections of bike park jump rhythm sections dedicated to beginners and big wheels, built bigger or with shorter gaps, or maybe include more sissy lines and rename them sissy/big wheeler lines. Stuff like this would only add fuel to the endless debate, as if we already didn't know what the differences between all the options were clearly enough.

    Worry is just not the right word. It's more like disappointment. When you thought $1500 was reasonable and $3000 was expensive, now $3000 is reasonable and $6000 is expensive. People are disappointed that prices are going up and people are willing to pay for "innovative" small batch stuff, when production on a large scale (think car parts) could bring prices down if we settled on a standard. Most of these innovations are just old ideas being revived and taken a few steps beyond anyways. Marketing is just hyping it all up and manufacturers are being pulled along for the ride, "to keep up". They feel if they don't have a 29er HT model, they can't compete, and their 26" HTs aren't selling, since marketing has hyped up the new wheel sizes so much. FS is a diff ball game though, with the marketing working to hype up DW Link VPP, Switch, etc. with the wheel size being secondary to the FS design.

    Many of us would just like to say, just ride, but when parts break and you search for something stronger and maybe lighter, you get disappointed that there are all these new options with incompatible standards. When one "sounds good" (F'n marketing), then you need a frame to hang all those new standard components on, then that comes with other new standards...

    MTBR has turned into mtn bike keep up with latest standard changes, rather than mtn bike review, where we say what parts break and aren't worth money, and buy that other part instead. Now the review section is dead, and people are just talking about the latest and greatest to upgrade to, if your stuff isn't working out to your satisfaction.

  70. #70
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    Quote Originally Posted by bigfruits View Post
    who cares about the marketing BS? im thrilled there are so many options.
    I'd disagree on the "so many options".

    A lot of bike companies are deciding for us. E.g. if you want an XC bike your choice is a) 29er, b) 29er or c) 29er.

  71. #71
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    Quote Originally Posted by Varaxis View Post
    Skilled and talented folk adapt quickly to many things and like to accept the challenge of defying what people think are the limits of something. If anything, I wanna see how 29er DH bikes do trying to clear the big DH track doubles, which were built with 26" bikes in mind.
    If you are implying that skill and talent implies preference for larger wheels, I would say that's bollocks.

    No amount of skill and talent will add several inches to my 174cm height. Long travel 29r just do not fit me, period. Nor do I care to go through silly contortions to try to make'em fit.

  72. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by Varaxis View Post
    29er DH tires in production, look out! Intense and Trek have 29er DH protos. Wouldn't be surprised if Spec had something as well. 650b is already in the international pro DH ranks.

    Should that make 26" fans worried? No. Normal/average people cling to familiarity, and many are familiar with 26". Skilled and talented folk adapt quickly to many things and like to accept the challenge of defying what people think are the limits of something. If anything, I wanna see how 29er DH bikes do trying to clear the big DH track doubles, which were built with 26" bikes in mind. Wonder if there will be sections of bike park jump rhythm sections dedicated to beginners and big wheels, built bigger or with shorter gaps, or maybe include more sissy lines and rename them sissy/big wheeler lines. Stuff like this would only add fuel to the endless debate, as if we already didn't know what the differences between all the options were clearly enough.

    Worry is just not the right word. It's more like disappointment. When you thought $1500 was reasonable and $3000 was expensive, now $3000 is reasonable and $6000 is expensive. People are disappointed that prices are going up and people are willing to pay for "innovative" small batch stuff, when production on a large scale (think car parts) could bring prices down if we settled on a standard. Most of these innovations are just old ideas being revived and taken a few steps beyond anyways. Marketing is just hyping it all up and manufacturers are being pulled along for the ride, "to keep up". They feel if they don't have a 29er HT model, they can't compete, and their 26" HTs aren't selling, since marketing has hyped up the new wheel sizes so much. FS is a diff ball game though, with the marketing working to hype up DW Link VPP, Switch, etc. with the wheel size being secondary to the FS design.

    Many of us would just like to say, just ride, but when parts break and you search for something stronger and maybe lighter, you get disappointed that there are all these new options with incompatible standards. When one "sounds good" (F'n marketing), then you need a frame to hang all those new standard components on, then that comes with other new standards...

    MTBR has turned into mtn bike keep up with latest standard changes, rather than mtn bike review, where we say what parts break and aren't worth money, and buy that other part instead. Now the review section is dead, and people are just talking about the latest and greatest to upgrade to, if your stuff isn't working out to your satisfaction.
    It's funny how you can see individual biases in how people respond to this thread (I'm not picking on you, yours was just the most recent).

    People crave certainty, and people crave status. You can see it in the mountain bike crowd. Small wheel people crave certainty "I'm going to be riding it forever... screw anyone else" big wheelers crave status "no one who is anyone rides less than a 29er for xc".

    I guess this keeps life interesting.....

  73. #73
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    Quote Originally Posted by Axe View Post
    If you are implying that skill and talent implies preference for larger wheels, I would say that's bollocks.

    No amount of skill and talent will add several inches to my 174cm height. Long travel 29r just do not fit me, period. Nor do I care to go through silly contortions to try to make'em fit.
    I was speaking of how very good riders can adapt to any bike. Tell a rider that 29ers suck at jumping--if that rider is skilled like Mike Montgomery and he sees a nice looking jump and sees that it's a possibility, although difficult, he might not just jump it, he'll backflip it. I wouldn't imply that he would prefer it. I believe most would prefer something that made them better and allowed them to approach loftier challenges with a more realistic chance of succeeding. I'm just saying, bigger wheels in the limelight will just make it clearer or more apparent the various advantages and disadvantages of bigger wheels. I can imagine Rob Warner even commentating on it, when he sees a big wheeler (650b in the case of World Cup DH), despite it being a subject people are sick of discussing.

    I'm not trying to convince people to change their beliefs. I'm just trying to look at the big picture sharing my perspective. 26" riders are voicing out for a good cause. I dislike the marketing and direction it's taking biking in general. Soon we'll have electronics and batteries on our bikes, controlling our suspension damping, shifting, adjustable geo, and seatpost. It's already been spotted and talked about, but some of us will be on it. Then $4500 will be a reasonable price with $9000 being expensive. The guys at work will still be like, you spent how much on a bike, a "pedal bike"?

  74. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by Varaxis View Post
    I was speaking of how very good riders can adapt to any bike.
    No. For example, no matter how good my daughter could ride, she can not even fit on a 26" well. She is like 4'8". She rides a 24" wheeled full suspension.

    29r on 150+mm travel rear and 150+ front even in Medium size is already a frigging barge. It is not a matter of beliefs. It is a matter of human body dimensions. Yes, you can contortion yourself onto it, maybe. Maybe somebody will like it. But it would have nothing to do with their skills.

  75. #75
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    I get your point, in terms of performance that comes with good fit, but you're being a bit closed minded now. What kind of picture goes through your mind of fitting your daughter on a 58+" (2x bigger than a 29er) two-wheeled pedal powered vehicle? Don't turn this thread into a picture gallery of clown bikes. (Click to see image to see if you were imagining anything like this... this thing redefines all-terrain, as it can travel on top of water too) The point behind the pic is to be open minded. You are focusing on a very narrow set of requirements.

    This kind of talk reminded me of this video: LINK. It seems that guy adapted to a very awkward fit. People get mad when their BBs are 13.5" or taller, or wheelbases longer than 45", on their bikes... well, no point to this other than there are people who have fun regardless.
    Last edited by Varaxis; 02-12-2013 at 06:12 PM.

  76. #76
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    Quote Originally Posted by Varaxis View Post
    I get your point, in terms of performance that comes with good fit, but you're being a bit closed minded now.
    About what? About performance benefits of a larger wheel? Bollocks. I would not buy another XC hardtail with 26" wheels, it makes sense and 29 or 650b fits me great. But you are closed minded if you do not see the other side. Physics will always be the same. Wheel stiffness decreases as cube of diameter. Weight increases linearly. And humans are of certain nature given size. And very few of them race against clock.

  77. #77
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    Quote Originally Posted by Varaxis View Post
    I get your point, in terms of performance that comes with good fit, but you're being a bit closed minded now. What kind of picture goes through your mind of fitting your daughter on a 58+" (2x bigger than a 29er) two-wheeled pedal powered vehicle? Don't turn this thread into a picture gallery of clown bikes. (Click to see image to see if you were imagining anything like this... this thing redefines all-terrain, as it can travel on top of water too) The point behind the pic is to be open minded. You are focusing on a very narrow set of requirements.

    This kind of talk reminded me of this video: LINK. It seems that guy adapted to a very awkward fit. People get mad when their BBs are 13.5" or taller, or wheelbases longer than 45", on their bikes... well, no point to this other than there are people who have fun regardless.
    Reading this really confirms to me you totally took my post above out of context. I was mocking all the different standards the bike industry throws at us, and how when it comes down to it, it doesn't make much difference. I'm sorry you didn't see that and felt the need to neg rep me. And in turn confirms my neg repping of you as you seem to be a bit hypocritical with your "open minded comment" and then being insulted by my post.
    For the record I have a 29er HT as well as a 26er FS and enjoy the heck out of both of them. Happy trails riding whatever bike you want.
    Last edited by Douger-1; 02-12-2013 at 06:51 PM.
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  78. #78
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    What we all are forgetting here is that the most important bike characteristic is color.

    I had to discard a perfectly good Kona and order Nicolai because that was the easier way to get the right hue of blue on the frame that my daughter helped me to pick - and without any silly colorway combinations that are so popular now. Seriously, some of the graphics offered are borderline disgusting.

    Maybe I can repaint Kona too, but that is a bit of a hassle. It just did not ride well with its puke brown color.

    Wheel size is not nearly as important.

  79. #79
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    My 29er HT has a terrible fit, with a front end too high (steep HA, long head tube, ext headset, big wheel), seat too low (sub 12" BB), the front wheel rubbing my toe, and really short seat tube that accepts a 27.2 post which meant shitty (or expensive) dropper post options. I went from having fun popping off even the smallest stone sticking halfway out of the ground, bunny hopping over things, and skidding around and having fun on my 26HT, to getting NO AIR and just cruising for miles with out any style on a two niner.

    I did not like that HT much, and I should really sell it, yet I still bought a Yeti SB95, a "long travel" 29er, despite demo'ing it back to back with a ASR5c and SB66. No logic what so ever behind the decision! I blame marketing! I don't see why do people buy these things up. *sarcasm*

    Riding them is fun in their own right, even my ill-fitting 29 HT. They alter the challenge of my local trails and I ride them each differently. People can buy speed, stability, confidence, capability, and even buy a little style (zomg flickable for srs whips!). Death to having only a few options? Oh noes, my wallet can't take it. Must make noise to stop it.

  80. #80
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    this whole thread makes me want to buy a bighit with a 24" rear wheel.

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    Re: Is 26er a dying breed?

    Are 26ers a dying breed...?

    I wonder where the nearest sperm bank is...
    Maybe I could sell some plasma. I don't know I'm just broke as hell.

    Wheel size?

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    I still don't understand the debate, here. If you have a particular riding style on particular trails, then there is the perfect bike with the perfect components out there for you. If you do your research, you'll find it. If you can't, then that's why, thankfully, we have bike shops. Too many standards is only really a problem for dealers, as they have to stock the parts. They don't have it? Call another one or wait a couple of days for them to order it. It's not the end of the world. Will everybody notice the difference between a 26" and 27.5" wheel? No. Will others? Yes! True, new standards are driven by manufacturers to sell more products, but there's nothing wrong with choices. Will prices go up as companies put more $$ into research and molds for new standards? Sure. However, you can spend $700 today and get a pretty darn good bike that would beat the crap out of a $2000 bike from 10 years ago. Things are getting more expensive, but a lot of people don't need to keep up with the trends. Do you need to buy a new bike with a tapered headtube, 650b wheels, 142mm rear end, 15mm axle fork, and tubeless compatible tires to enjoy the trails? Absolutely not. When the time does come for a new bike, however, isn't it nice to know that your new bike will be maximized for your particular needs? Stay informed and do your research, and use the options to your advantage. You don't want 29" wheels? Great, you have other options. Don't buy them and be happy. Dumbing down technology for the few people that don't understand it is stupid. Kind of like dumbing down trails for the few people that can't ride a more advanced trail, isn't it? Options are good, whether you need them or not.

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    I just went two months of hell trying to decide which wheel size I wanted. I started out wanting HT 29er, then FS 29er, then HT or FS 650b and finally just settled on SC Heckler solely because with that frame you can have both 26er and 650b. I think that is something everyone is forgetting is that a lot of these 26er frames can accept 650b wheels without issues. I went with the Heckler also because I am a big guy (6'3 270lbs) and a 29er wheel just seems like it will be easy to taco for AM riding. What really sold me to stay with the 26er is that most of the frames built around 26er wheels can be converted, and as more and more becomes available for the 650b prices will come down and I will buy a 650b wheel set.

  84. #84
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    Is 26er a dying breed?

    Quote Originally Posted by dbabuser View Post
    I don't see any market for a 27.5 or 29" dirt jumper.
    Is 26er a dying breed?-imageuploadedbytapatalk1360767044.202360.jpg


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    If 29'ers are Gay, are 27.5'ers Bi-curious?

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    Over the course of the past two years, I've gotten rid of all my 700 bikes except for one silly Italian track bike that is just too pretty to let go at this point. Now, my 5 main bikes are all 26". The cool thing is, they're all Surlys, and all but one of them, my LHT, will accept wheels larger than 26" if for some reason it ever becomes hard to get 26" wheels... but I see "swing bikes" coming back into fashion before I see that ever happening, so I'm not sweating it.

  87. #87
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    Quote Originally Posted by mountainbiker24 View Post
    I still don't understand the debate, here. If you have a particular riding style on particular trails, then there is the perfect bike with the perfect components out there for you. If you do your research, you'll find it. If you can't, then that's why, thankfully, we have bike shops. Too many standards is only really a problem for dealers, as they have to stock the parts. They don't have it? Call another one or wait a couple of days for them to order it. It's not the end of the world. Will everybody notice the difference between a 26" and 27.5" wheel? No. Will others? Yes! True, new standards are driven by manufacturers to sell more products, but there's nothing wrong with choices. Will prices go up as companies put more $$ into research and molds for new standards? Sure. However, you can spend $700 today and get a pretty darn good bike that would beat the crap out of a $2000 bike from 10 years ago. Things are getting more expensive, but a lot of people don't need to keep up with the trends. Do you need to buy a new bike with a tapered headtube, 650b wheels, 142mm rear end, 15mm axle fork, and tubeless compatible tires to enjoy the trails? Absolutely not. When the time does come for a new bike, however, isn't it nice to know that your new bike will be maximized for your particular needs? Stay informed and do your research, and use the options to your advantage. You don't want 29" wheels? Great, you have other options. Don't buy them and be happy. Dumbing down technology for the few people that don't understand it is stupid. Kind of like dumbing down trails for the few people that can't ride a more advanced trail, isn't it? Options are good, whether you need them or not.
    Im not sure if this was directed at me in part but I'll take a stab at it.

    First no one is saying to dumb down technology. My point is there is a difference between theoretical data, emperical data, and user experience. I wont go into detail but that is all I was trying to say. You can add 2mm to my stanchon tube diameter and add 3/4 of an inch to the radius of my wheel and sell me on how theoretically it makes everything better. But when it comes down to it, for the average person on the trail, I really doubt you can quantify those very small changes into any real tangible performance gain. If your user experience is better because you think you can notice a 2mm increase in stanchon tube diameter even though emperical data shows no performance increase than great !!! But lets call it what it is.

    In addition as someone who works on their bikes and keeps them a very long time I find the number of standards frustrating. My Slayer has a 20mm TA but when looking for my 29er HT good luck finding a 29er fork with 20mm TA. Yes the Revelation used to come in 20mm but has recently gone to 15mm. What does this mean? Now I have to buy 15mm TA adaptors for my trueing stand. Now I have to buy a 15mm TA adaptor for my roof rack. Now if I want to move the hub from my 29er to my Slayer I have to spend more $$$ to buy a new axle conversion kit. And what are we as consumers getting for all of this other than a lighter wallet?

    Thats fine if you disagree with me. I am all for riding what you want. Its your money. Im just raising another view point. I apologize if people like Varaxis are insulted by my posts.
    “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did." Mark Twain

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    Quote Originally Posted by Douger-1 View Post
    Im not sure if this was directed at me in part but I'll take a stab at it.

    First no one is saying to dumb down technology. My point is there is a difference between theoretical data, emperical data, and user experience. I wont go into detail but that is all I was trying to say. You can add 2mm to my stanchon tube diameter and add 3/4 of an inch to the radius of my wheel and sell me on how theoretically it makes everything better. But when it comes down to it, for the average person on the trail, I really doubt you can quantify those very small changes into any real tangible performance gain. If your user experience is better because you think you can notice a 2mm increase in stanchon tube diameter even though emperical data shows no performance increase than great !!! But lets call it what it is.

    In addition as someone who works on their bikes and keeps them a very long time I find the number of standards frustrating. My Slayer has a 20mm TA but when looking for my 29er HT good luck finding a 29er fork with 20mm TA. Yes the Revelation used to come in 20mm but has recently gone to 15mm. What does this mean? Now I have to buy 15mm TA adaptors for my trueing stand. Now I have to buy a 15mm TA adaptor for my roof rack. Now if I want to move the hub from my 29er to my Slayer I have to spend more $$$ to buy a new axle conversion kit. And what are we as consumers getting for all of this other than a lighter wallet?

    Thats fine if you disagree with me. I am all for riding what you want. Its your money. Im just raising another view point. I apologize if people like Varaxis are insulted by my posts.
    My post wasn't directed at anybody in particular. I just get a kick out of it when people say things are getting too expensive or there are too many choices! Everybody's got an opinion, which is why there are so many options in the first place. I 100% agree that most people won't notice the difference between a 15 and 20mm front axle or tubed and tubeless wheels. However, some people do, and they might get more enjoyment if their front wheel tracks a little straighter in the rocks. My point in general is to buy what you need or what you want. Don't buy it because somebody tells you you need it. Be an informed buyer, and enjoy the technology we have!

  89. #89
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    I drank the 29er cool-aid and now back on a 26. Last I look a year ago I think 26 inch was still winning on the xc worldcup level. Retro is cool.

  90. #90
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    Is 26er a dying breed?

    Quote Originally Posted by mountainbiker24 View Post

    My point in general is to buy what you need or what you want. Don't buy it because somebody tells you you need it. Be an informed buyer, and enjoy the technology we have!
    Is 26er a dying breed?-imageuploadedbytapatalk1360798550.309865.jpg

    I would only add: If you can tell the difference between different components ( whatever they are) buy the one you like best and keep smiling. If you cannot tell the difference, do not waste money on a hyped component. If you are a casual rider, buy the cheapest bike available (from a reputable shop, NOT Walmart, Costco,Target, or Dix) that you can ride comfortably, so long as the shop warrants it won't fall apart and will replace parts that break.

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  91. #91
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    Why is wheel diameter such an emotional and sensitive issue? Are bike owners worried that if the other size becomes the standard, then their bikes will be worthless? There are so many options out there for everything (forks, frames, seats, pedals, etc, etc) but nothing seems to generate arguments like 26 vs 29.

    What's the story here?

  92. #92
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    Quote Originally Posted by jason_recliner View Post
    nothing seems to generate arguments like 26 vs 29.

    What's the story here?
    "Emotional and sensitive" could give a clue here... could it simply be the same old story that always comes up when comparing things... everyone wants a bigger _______, or they want to say they have a big __________.

    Insert whatever noun works for you.

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    Quote Originally Posted by brokebike View Post
    "Emotional and sensitive" could give a clue here... could it simply be the same old story that always comes up when comparing things... everyone wants a bigger _______, or they want to say they have a big __________.

    Insert whatever noun works for you.
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    I find it difficult to take any opinion seriously that would imply one wheel size is superior to all others universally.

    Everything is a compromise. Be it wheel size, frame material, suspension design, nothing is best at everything having attributes which may be well suited for some applications but poorly suited for others.

    But hey, it's only facts and physics

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    Re: Is 26er a dying breed?

    I bet if you go back to the very first mtbr 26v29 debate, I bet its really just manufacturers and lbs' in disguise to get their product to sell. I'm going to do 5xc races this year on a 28lb 5" 26er and i don't give a fuuuuuuuuuuhhhhhhq! :beer:
    Last edited by kikoraa; 02-14-2013 at 06:12 AM.

  96. #96
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    I think the only thing to get really concerned about is that manufacturers will abandon the lesser selling wheel size (or whatever standard). It's already happened with tires, to some degree. WTB dropped their wider 26" offerings, as there is more money to be made in 27.5 and 29 right now. RIP, 2.5 Weirwolf, 2.55 Weirwolf LT, 2.5 Moto Raptor...
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    Quote Originally Posted by dbabuser View Post
    I think the only thing to get really concerned about is that manufacturers will abandon the lesser selling wheel size (or whatever standard). It's already happened with tires, to some degree. WTB dropped their wider 26" offerings, as there is more money to be made in 27.5 and 29 right now. RIP, 2.5 Weirwolf, 2.55 Weirwolf LT, 2.5 Moto Raptor...
    IDK if 27.5 wheels are the reason for that, it looks like they don't have ANY DH/FR tires on their website anymore:
    WTB » Products – Tires

    But they do have lots of AM and XC tires in 26" flavor! As for there being "more money" in other tire sizes...how do you figure? The majority of the market is still in 26" wheels, even though the other sizes are gaining in popularity.
    "Got everything you need?"

  98. #98
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    i have 2 all mountain full suspension bikes 26 inch, and a 29er hardtail,i love my full suspension bikes for downhill suff and jumping even technical climbing i like,but i have to admit that something good is in that 29er hardtail and i enjoy so much riding that bike, in the downhills i can`t go as fast and can`t jump as good as my all mountain, but this is a hardtail bike and is very good to be a simple hardtail i even feel that is better in the downhills that any cross country full supension 26ers, and don`t even talk about the climbing, is so fast but you need sometimes to put more power to the pedals thats it, im really want to try all mountain 29er full suspension maybe kona satori or stumpjumper fsr evo 29er, for shure my next bike is gona be 29er all mountain, as for 27.5 i think that is so close to 26er that are little difference, what im shure is dead is the old 26 hardtail.

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    nah

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    Quote Originally Posted by brunomu View Post
    what im shure is dead is the old 26 hardtail.
    I just put together my newest bike-a 26" hardtail.

    15.5" chain stays are not happening with a 29" wheel.

    I like 29ers, I rented a Tallboy and thought it was great but again, one wheel size will never be best for all situations across the board.

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