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  1. #1
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    What do you think about 36" wheels?

    Hey Clydesdales,

    I wrote an article about 36ers and thought I'd share it with you all. I'm hoping these things catch on, as it seems wheel size is the main remaining hindrance from a bike becoming truly proportional for a tall rider. The article: Proportional Bikes for Tall People: The 36er

    How do you feel about 36" wheels? Overboard, or brilliant?
    Last edited by Tall Sam; 06-12-2014 at 03:09 PM.
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  2. #2
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    Doesn't seem like your link is working.

    As a 6'7" dude though, I love the idea of a 36" bike. I'm not sure they could be made short and light enough to be useful mountain biking, but I'd certainly buy one if they were getting good reviews and the geometry, etc, were right for my style of riding.

  3. #3
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    Re: What do you think about 36" wheels?

    Does this mean we need proportional trails and trail features for really tall people?

  4. #4
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    I fixed the link, but here it is again: 36ers

    It's true the 36er won't be able to go some places 29ers can go, but the opposite would be true too
    ; bigger wheels can get over bigger rocks, etc.
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  5. #5
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    I think a 36er on a trail designed for 26" bikes might get boring. Pretty much the only thing that would slow you down would be your turning radius.

  6. #6
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    At 6'3 I'm barely tall enough to build an 36'er that handles properly. The idea excites me out of sympathy, but i wonder if a 36'er is even the best option for you REALLY tall guys; most of you don't have an equally proportionate stance, weight, or power output to match your height. Makes me think that, with a few exceptions, a custom build on smaller wheels is gonna work better.
    .

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tall Sam View Post
    It's true the 36er won't be able to go some places 29ers can go, but the opposite would be true too
    ; bigger wheels can get over bigger rocks, etc.
    watch some trials riders (i.e., danny mcaskill) get up something 6-7' tall on 20" wheels and tell me you think that's true. Getting over stuff is a matter of skill, not wheel size (or equipment at all)

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joules View Post
    watch some trials riders (i.e., danny mcaskill) get up something 6-7' tall on 20" wheels and tell me you think that's true. Getting over stuff is a matter of skill, not wheel size (or equipment at all)
    Perhaps it has been too long since you last rode your tricycle :-)
    This is starting to sound like the old proportional crank length debate... As people scale, the objects they interact with should scale similarly.
    Take a look at Yao Ming on his 29er in the post. He would be way better off with a 36er, you can't seriously debate that he wouldn't. He is the extreme, yes, but it proves the point that objects we interact with should scale as we scale.
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  9. #9
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    36er's are fun to build and ride I've got the weight done to 31.24lbs
    on latest one here are a couple pics of ones I built and ridden!! They ride just like a bike they roll everthing tight switchbacks are the only thing that you have really watch your line!!
    What do you think about 36" wheels?-dsc00697.jpgWhat do you think about 36" wheels?-dsc00452.jpg
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    PAYASO 36er.....Live the Circus

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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joules View Post
    watch some trials riders (i.e., danny mcaskill) get up something 6-7' tall on 20" wheels and tell me you think that's true. Getting over stuff is a matter of skill, not wheel size (or equipment at all)
    We're not all Danny MacAskill - but just for reference, he rides 26" wheels (or even 700c) Road Bike Party 2 - Martyn Ashton - YouTube

    Bigger wheels do roll over certain terrain better than smaller wheels. If that wasn't the case we'd all be riding BMX, and we're not.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by todwil View Post
    36er's are fun to build and ride I've got the weight done to 31.24lbs
    on latest one here are a couple pics of ones I built and ridden!! They ride just like a bike they roll everthing tight switchbacks are the only thing that you have really watch your line!!
    Click image for larger version. 

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ID:	900902Click image for larger version. 

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ID:	900903
    Happy Motoring
    Those look awesome. Where do you get the rims and tires?
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  12. #12
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    36.6

    Quote Originally Posted by Bikin' Bric View Post
    Those look awesome. Where do you get the rims and tires?
    The rim and spokes from Unicycle.com and the tires from Waltworks or Unicycle.com the rest is bike and now with the 1X stuff coming out gearing isn't a problem anymore my current setup is a 1X10 the front ring is a 28t XX1 and a 42t Oneup with a standard XT cassette out back
    PAYASO 36er.....Live the Circus

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  13. #13
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    It's never gonna happen mainstream. 29ers took forever to catch on and now the trend towards 27.5. Look at all the disadvantages…weight, cost, availability, strength, acceleration, maneuverability. I'm 6'8" and ride hard fast XC. I don't see any reason why I would want larger wheels.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Surfdog93 View Post
    It's never gonna happen mainstream. 29ers took forever to catch on and now the trend towards 27.5. Look at all the disadvantages…weight, cost, availability, strength, acceleration, maneuverability. I'm 6'8" and ride hard fast XC. I don't see any reason why I would want larger wheels.
    I seem to have read this same quote when 29er's were boutique but now 26in wheels are obsoleting quickly. O I'm 6' and 300# and I too ride fast hard XC and even faster harder DH trust me these bikes can take it.
    PAYASO 36er.....Live the Circus

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  15. #15
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    To much rotating mass?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Surfdog93 View Post
    It's never gonna happen mainstream. 29ers took forever to catch on and now the trend towards 27.5. Look at all the disadvantages…weight, cost, availability, strength, acceleration, maneuverability. I'm 6'8" and ride hard fast XC. I don't see any reason why I would want larger wheels.
    29s aren't going anywhere, and I would argue that 26 is giving way to 27.5. If that's the case 27.5 trend is actually towards larger wheels, not smaller.

    I can see it now. 36 eventually catches on. Then Giant is going to come out with 32.5, which will be heralded as the ideal size for all people in all riding conditions

  17. #17
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    36 for tall dudes

    So I'm 6'9" and would love a 36" tire on a "cruiser" style frame. Think black sheep, or trek sawyer or old style Schwinn retro look. Even on a 29er I feel like a adult riding a kids bike.

    Guess it's time to start saving $$ for a custom frame.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by DennisF View Post
    29s aren't going anywhere, and I would argue that 26 is giving way to 27.5. If that's the case 27.5 trend is actually towards larger wheels, not smaller.

    I can see it now. 36 eventually catches on. Then Giant is going to come out with 32.5, which will be heralded as the ideal size for all people in all riding conditions
    I really think Giant should give you a job.
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  19. #19
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    Quick update on that thread to let you know guys that we have a KickStarter campaign up for producing the DirtySixer here in California. Fabrication done by Ventana btw.
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  20. #20
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    I'm not tall enough even closely justify a 36er, but I think a 36er mountain bike would be cool and fun. Fun like a fat bike.
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  21. #21
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    As a bike shop mechanic, I need to ask.

    Have you solved the problem of the excess leverage tearing the hubs to pieces? Because 36ers snap axles and fry bearings/cups/cones like crazy.

    Because almost everything 36 that rolls into the shop has a standard 135/100 OLD spacing. And It's not just the cheap ones either. If 29'er needed Boost, then you'll need a newer, stronger hub design to counter it. I'd push for fat-bike hubs, but while the flanges are wide, they're neither tall nor substantially reinforced.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by davidfrench View Post
    Quick update on that thread to let you know guys that we have a KickStarter campaign up for producing the DirtySixer here in California. Fabrication done by Ventana btw.
    Wow, Ventana makes good stuff, these things are going to be built solid.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agwan View Post
    As a bike shop mechanic, I need to ask.

    Have you solved the problem of the excess leverage tearing the hubs to pieces? Because 36ers snap axles and fry bearings/cups/cones like crazy.

    Because almost everything 36 that rolls into the shop has a standard 135/100 OLD spacing. And It's not just the cheap ones either. If 29'er needed Boost, then you'll need a newer, stronger hub design to counter it. I'd push for fat-bike hubs, but while the flanges are wide, they're neither tall nor substantially reinforced.
    Really? Im raising the BS flag on this 29er don't need boost and since there are only a hand fool of three foot wheeled bikes out there and Ive only ran into one other than my own, just how many have you seen in person? I run King and I9 hubs and have had ZERO issues.
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  24. #24
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    I'd give a 36er a try but am skeptical that it would out perform my 29+ in the dirt. My buddy is all about it. Trouble is I may never get the chance to try one.

    If I was 7 feet tall I'd be sold. At 6'5" my XXL ECR is fine. A custom 29+ is next on the list.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cleared2land View Post
    I'm not tall enough even closely justify a 36er, but I think a 36er mountain bike would be cool and fun. Fun like a fat bike.
    It's definitely an intriguing idea. Not like a fat bike though. Fat bikes have definite advantages in specific situations, I haven't seen much evidence that 36ers are better at anything in particular save being a bit more suitable for taller riders.

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