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Thread: 26er Vs. 29er??

  1. #1
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    26er Vs. 29er??

    I'm 6'6 and weigh 220lbs, not trying to ride to lose weight or anything, just love mountain biking.

    I'm looking at all mountain/enduro and am shopping about for bikes. At the moment i have narrowed my search to the Merida One-Twenty 500 26" or the 2014 Trek Fuel ex 8 29". Merida rrp is $1999 AUD and the Trek $2999 AUD.

    Not certain whether the 29er is worth it or not? It seems almost as if it's a fad bike companies are making a press for.

    Anyone have decent 26" Vs. 29" experience??

  2. #2
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    No fad. You need to test ride rather than take the word of some anon types on the internet - or even the word of the press.

    29er is no fad. I'm 6'7" and 250lbs and have ridden them for years now. They are a little different to 26 in riding style, but nothing really different. For us bigger types they seem to work better. I know that 26" bikes feel wrong to me now. There is a guy in the UK who is winning the UK enduro race series on a 29er Intense bike.
    No Specialized? No Trek/Gary Fisher on your list? just wondering why those two bikes as they are very different.

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    It's quite difficult to organise test rides for me. I live in Western Australia where there is for some reason a very small mtb scene....even though we have the longest purpose built mtb track in the world? I've basically been looking at everything that is available, now i have basically convinced myself on the Trek.

    I'll see how i go with getting a test ride at a local store as i know they have the bike stocked.

    Only new to the sport, so i'm quite un-educated on all the different varieties.

  4. #4
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    29ers have been around too long for them to be a fad. They are legit. They are quite different from a mini-bike (26") in the way they ride and handle. Not better per say, but different. You have to decide which is better for you.

  5. #5
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    Have someone take a picture of you sitting on a 26er and then a 29er. See what looks right.

    I saw video of myself on my XL 29er and it looks like a BMX bike under me. I'm only 6'4 or 5 depending on the day.
    I like turtles

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by NYrr496 View Post
    Have someone take a picture of you sitting on a 26er and then a 29er. See what looks right.

    I saw video of myself on my XL 29er and it looks like a BMX bike under me. I'm only 6'4 or 5 depending on the day.
    Yao makes the 29"er wheels look a wee bit tiny...

    gunnar_yao_1

  7. #7
    turtles make me hot
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    Quote Originally Posted by BruceBrown View Post
    Yao makes the 29"er wheels look a wee bit tiny...

    gunnar_yao_1
    Really, Man...
    I like turtles

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    I'd hate to be that tall and have to ride such a terrible looking bike. I'd hate to be that tall anyways.

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    Test rode a 29er today. Feels bad to me, really not a fan. Glad i tested it out first because prior to testing it i was sold on the 29er. Ordered the Fuel Ex 8 in the 26" instead.

    Crazy excited to hit the trails

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    What 'feels bad'?

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    When you are really tall and ride twisty trails with a lot of hairpins, your larger bike already has a larger turning circle than most. The choice may than be an extra inch in the top tube or a bigger wheelsize. I prefer the extra toptube despite the odd looks that only other people notice. The wheelbase of my bike is about 49", where most bikes are at least 4" shorter. In corners I need about 8" more room than others, that is quite often the difference between making a hairpin or not. Actually it looks like the last 2" in the turning circle really make a difference and may be the reason for a lot of tall, but not extremely tall people to really like the larger wheelsizes.

  12. #12
    turtles make me hot
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    When I first got my XL 29er, I hated very tight twisty trails. Now, I ride through them almost completely fluid. Just took time getting it down.
    I like turtles

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    At 6'4", 215 or so and been riding all my life. I can say without a doubt, 'upgrading' to my current ride last year, Niner RIP 9 and I couldn't be happier. As others have stated, it takes some getting used to vs a 26". My 26" bike is a top of the line Stumpjumper with all the bells and whistles. I haven't ridden it once since getting my Niner 8 months ago.

    Go out and test ride a few bikes and get whichever one is right for you. Forget what magazines tell you to buy and you'll be happier, hopefully!

    Good luck!

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by mwils View Post
    Test rode a 29er today. Feels bad to me, really not a fan. Glad i tested it out first because prior to testing it i was sold on the 29er. Ordered the Fuel Ex 8 in the 26" instead.

    Crazy excited to hit the trails
    Dang! Bad choice at your height.

    Oh well, you'll eventually get to 29"ers. Even Julien Absalon - one of the greatest mountain bike racers in the world - at 5'11" finally switched to a 29"er this year.

    BB

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    29ers are definately not a fad. That being said, at 6'3", I will always have a 26" bike. If I had the $ to own multiple bikes, I'd probably get a 29er for racing. But for a do it all bike, I'll stick with my Enduro. But that is just my preference, after having ridden all types.

    29er full suspension? Seems like the Niner brand does the most research with pivots and what not. Probably the best one. Although Pivot 429 is a great bike too. 29ers are just another good option, giving more choices for people to get the 'right' bike.
    “Think of bicycles as rideable art that can just about save the world.”
-Grant Petersen

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    In the future i may come back and have a look at a 29er for my second bike. But as a student and the fact that this is my first serious bike, i feel like i should go with something i am more comfortable with.

    Hopefully i will come across a kind stranger in my travels that will let me have a go on a proper trail on their 29er and possibly change my mind. Without riding trails on the 29er i don't want to spend over $2,000 on something i'm unfamiliar with and that doesn't feel the best for me personally.

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    Isnt the height of the person respective to the height of the bike frame and not the Tires.

    He could of gotten a 26" bike but with a L or XL frame. Say 19" or 20" frame or how ever the bike mfg labels the bike?

  18. #18
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    It's like basketballs. If you are the size of the OP - wouldn't you want to play with the full size 29.5 to 29.875 inches regulation size Basketball?

    Or do you want to play with the kids use....?


    Boys In House
    3rd/4th grades - 27.5 inch (Size 5)
    5th/6th grades - 28.5 inch (Size 6)
    7th grade and up - 29.5 inch (Size 7)

    Girls In House
    3rd/4th grades - 27.5 inch (Size 5)
    5th grade and up - 28.5 inch (Size 6)

    Boys Travel
    4th/5th/6th grades - 28.5 inch (Size 6)
    7th grade and up - 29.5 inch (Size 7)

    Girls Travel
    All grades - 28.5 inch (Size 6)

    The OP at 6'6" would be good to go on a size 23" frame 29"er.

  19. #19
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    Can't imagine riding a 26er ever ever again. Went 29er back in 2008 and never looked back. I'm 6'6" 260 and ride a Ventana El Capitan. It is the perfect bike for ME. Your results may vary, but for me it fits like a glove. I have zero turning issues and it climbs waaaay better than the 26ers I've had in the past. Titus Super Moto and Specialized Enduro.

    I customized my 23" (XL) frame to fit me based on bike fitting and research and wouldn't you know it Ventana comes out with my frame measurements in the following years.

    I know guys and girls shorter than 6' using 29ers and loving them. I can't imagine anyone our height not using one.

    I know this, should the frame or modded fork break, I'd buy another in a nano second.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by BruceBrown View Post
    It's like basketballs. If you are the size of the OP - wouldn't you want to play with the full size 29.5 to 29.875 inches regulation size Basketball?

    Or do you want to play with the kids use....?


    Boys In House
    3rd/4th grades - 27.5 inch (Size 5)
    5th/6th grades - 28.5 inch (Size 6)
    7th grade and up - 29.5 inch (Size 7)

    Girls In House
    3rd/4th grades - 27.5 inch (Size 5)
    5th grade and up - 28.5 inch (Size 6)

    Boys Travel
    4th/5th/6th grades - 28.5 inch (Size 6)
    7th grade and up - 29.5 inch (Size 7)

    Girls Travel
    All grades - 28.5 inch (Size 6)

    The OP at 6'6" would be good to go on a size 23" frame 29"er.
    Hmm interesting analogy.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by eokerholm View Post
    Can't imagine riding a 26er ever ever again. Went 29er back in 2008 and never looked back. I'm 6'6" 260 and ride a Ventana El Capitan. It is the perfect bike for ME. Your results may vary, but for me it fits like a glove. I have zero turning issues and it climbs waaaay better than the 26ers I've had in the past. Titus Super Moto and Specialized Enduro.

    I customized my 23" (XL) frame to fit me based on bike fitting and research and wouldn't you know it Ventana comes out with my frame measurements in the following years.

    I know guys and girls shorter than 6' using 29ers and loving them. I can't imagine anyone our height not using one.

    I know this, should the frame or modded fork break, I'd buy another in a nano second.
    My girlfriend is 4'11" and when we went bike shopping several months back she kept going back to the 29ers. She has no knowledge of bikes what so ever and she just kept sating that the 29er felt better. She ended up getting a Trek Cali.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by 208Ryder View Post
    Hmm interesting analogy.
    Very similar to wheel size as we move our kids through their first bicycle to when they are fully grown. The appropriate size frame combined with wheel size was part of a normal fit for the best handling. It is hard to get a very "normal" fit for a 6'6" rider that will handle as well with the 26" wheels - even if the frame fits - as with 29" wheels. I'd venture to say that most tall riders who are old enough, have years of riding the 26" wheels under their belt before they switched to the 29"er. Even with appropriate size frames - it's not a fad or a mistake that they have chosen to ride the larger wheels now that they are available.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nubster View Post
    I'd hate to be that tall and have to ride such a terrible looking bike. I'd hate to be that tall anyways.
    No need to worry.

    There are only 2 men in the world at Yao's height - and Yao is one of the 2.

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