Update on my HD vs Enduro 29 Experiment
I have put a solid 160 miles in on the Enduro now and can give some real feedback. It is a pretty amazing what they have done with that design. Rides like DH bike, but climbs decent.
The Horst Link design, I still can't call it FSR since they just bought it, is much more plush than DW, but I think that DW strikes the right balance. Both designs disappear in a good way going downhill, but the DW is much more efficient on the climbs. For me the CTD rear shock is a waste. Descend is way too soft to use even on DH runs. Climb is only used on the pavement, but I guess Fox needed something new to market.
Moving on to 26 vs 29 which is what I think a lot of people are curious about. The Enduro will ride any trail, switchback, rock garden, etc. that the HD will. I know that people think 29 is unweildy in tight situations, but I have found ZERO difference with this geometry. The WAY they go about it is significantly different. The E29 is a true monster truck. I just simply plows through everything and is almost condescending to the trail. The conversation would go something like this;
Trail Feature "Watch this bushes! Take that you stupid mountain bike!"
E29 "Oh Mr Trail Feature did you say something? Yeah, I did not even realize you were there trying to slow me down so please stop acting like you matter. I have others of your kind whose wills I have to crush now. Goodbye and we won't be speaking again."
Bushes bust out laughing, while Mr Feature starts crying.
Compare that to the HD
Trail Feature "Watch this bushes! Take that you stupid mountain bike!"
HD "How did you like that kung fu/karate move? I even threw in a little Michael Jackson meets Miley Cyrus move for you as well!"
Mr Feature "That was absolutely amazing and I can't wait to see what you come up with next time!"
Bushes stand up and applaud while thowing leaves in appreciation of the show they just viewed.
HD takes a bow to show her appreciation for Mr Feature providing the proper stage to show off the fact that she has the moves to back up her looks.
As I said totally different approach, but the net result for ME was IDENTICAL times down to the second. For those of you that haven't figured it out I am total Strava addict. I rode the two back to back last week on the same loop from my house. Time up the one long climb was 9:59 on both bikes. On the rocky nasty super tight descent time on both bikes was 2:18. On the longer rolling descent, yep exact same time. I can't make this up and it was repeated several times on different segments. The only real difference was one segment where I had to stop and take a branch out of my rear wheel on the HD.
A few other notes of interest, the Lyrik is still a better fork than the Pike. Don't get me wrong, the Pike is excellent, but the Lyrik gives you the last 5% in performance, but you have to pay for it with the weight. The Fox CTD shock sucks compared to the Monarch Plus which is expected. I should be able to compare the Float piggyback to the Monarch soon when my Mach 6 shows up. The Formula brakes suck relative to my XTR's. Shocking I know, but I lose a little confidence with the Formula's because of their inconsistent performance.
Let me know if there are specific questions I haven't answered.
ROS in effect!
Thanks for the update SPunk. I love hearing other's perspectives on all this stuff, especially when folks are thoughtful about what they're feeling on the trail.
I've never really loved any 29'er I've ridden, and at this point that's a lot of nice ones (429c, Tall Boy c & LTc) but I remain intrigued by the options that folks are trying with them.
For me though, part of my issue with 29'ers is that I'm not really interested in the ROS effect. I don't want to just roll over ish. I want to Ride It, and 27.5 gives me the feel that I like with 26" and just enough of the ROS effect in there as well.
Your point on the XTR brakes is spot on. Every ride I feel like I have at least one moment where I marvel at how much control I've got with them. Best brakes I've ever ridden.
For me personally I've narrowed my quiver to my cheap 29'er HT and my HDR 27.5, and I feel like I'm good for a while, but I love hearing what others are trying out.
Commit or eat sh!t
I just put a CCDB Air with Climbing Switch on my Enduro, and it makes a huge difference. You might want to try the Enduro with it instead of the crappy Fox shock.
Thanks for the comparison. What level Enduro are you riding? I'm jealous of your quiver, adding a Mach 6 is amazing. If you had to pick the HD or the E29 for your main everyday bike, what would you choose?
So I am wondering what the point of changing was? Apart from new toys and we all get that!
If you are not going to climb a bit faster or gain on your strava times on the descents even though the niner laughs in the face of adverse trail features then why? And more to the point why is it only just as fast?
My observations have been - when riding with frients with niners (a tallboy carbon and a spider 29) is that when I am fresh I can keep up relatively easily and actually go faster on some descents, but I soon fall away when tiring. My observation is that the niner may take a little less energy to keep at pace but won't necessarily descend any faster. So on that basis I would consider one if I was taking part in events that were a bit longer than the usual enduros we have here or if I was taller than my current 5'10/11
From the perspective of a non racer who could care less about strava, which bike is more fun? I ask because I am 6'5 and would probably benefit from a bigger bike, but only if a bigger bike is more fun.
I think at 6'5 you prob should be demoing niners. They seem to make most sense for people 6'0 and above I think
Nice follow up SP,
Reasons for what you describe and SP are simple your friends and SPs larger wheeled bikes maybe more versatile, thats the simplistic view.
The fact is the larger wheels longer wheelbase, still shite suspension, people are plonked more between the wheels and have less negative effect on poor front and rear dampers, poor geo, they provide more inherant stability for most riders and crutch, mask the same issues that are usually compounded on a 26" bike! And there is the gotchas!
Also they are not similarly specced, so for longer rides your friends and SP on his Enduro have lighter components smaller shocks and forks this has and always will make the biggest difference to any bike regardless of wheel size, when long distance riding where you may get tired, dude you are riding near DH wheels, heavy tires, big coil fork which is shite at the mo, sorry but that is half the problems a poor shock setup, none of which is your fault, just bad ass servicing, its no surprise you are behind on longer rides or get tired before they do or that you can be faster downhill if the downhill is downhill.
Most modern trails are pretty tame lets face it and getting tamer by the year, bikes are better and the gap is smaller, bigger wheels make it easier for people to ride faster, are they better for it, debateable, they plough along yes they can be fast, its what you compare it too and the fact here which I will always debate is they are not comparing it to much at all.
For one bike an Enduro 29er may well be the answer or Bronson, or a well rounded 26" for a rider with wide range skill set, bigger wheels make it easier to look good, in real situations on a real trail well EWS showed us its the rider not the wheel. No surprise theyre.
Its not the time of the bike, its the time of the wheel, so wheel at it.
Thanks for the comparisons! I'm looking forward to demoing an E29 this weekend in an area that's pretty rocky. Hopefully I'll get on a Mach 6 as well.
To answer some questions, I am on an Enduro Comp. The point of this was to form my own opinion and not just buy into the hype. I am looking for a new race Enduro race bike, bur really I was just curious if the 29'r would be faster for me. The only way I could do this is to buy one and put some real mileage on it and I am fortunate enough to be able to execute on the idea. I don't really notice the rollover effect that people talk about and my trails are pretty rocky. I am going to continue to switch back and forth between them for the next few weeks. It has been lousy riding for me lately since I have been out of town for 11 of the last 14 days. Mavs I will try to get some pics, but it is tough when I am riding by myself. More to come!
Keep up with the info when you can SP. This is make-or-break for Spesh & 29 this year as the 27.5 onslaught has caught them full force. I wonder if they'd had the Enduro 29ers to market a year or two earlier if the 27.5 movement would have been mitigated a bit.
I should try a ride on one of their new ones as well. It's been ages since I've touched a Horst rear.
Sweet as buddy, just do what ya can, sic quiver, enjoy the testing process dude, I would thrash the arse off them too if could execute the idea haha.
Originally Posted by Salespunk
Though HD would still be my go to girl I like a good time too not just a fast time Id rather blame the lack of real Enduro courses than bike as never ending chase after rainbows will never end once in that mode.
Id be surprised if you didn't like the M6 though, just some minor details not well executed on that frame for mine though!
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