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  1. #1
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    29 dual suspension for racing

    Hi, i think i will be moving to a dual suspension 29er, next year. There are quite o few of them out there, can anyone reccomend anything. It needs to be a good climber as there are lots of mountains in my region.

  2. #2
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    ibis ripley looks good. Problem is it may not be available in time.

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    Specialized Epic comes to mind, as does a Niner Jet 9 RDO, Cannondale Scalpel, or Santa Cruz Tallboy. Take your pick! I'd go with the Epic personally, as the Brain is an amazing piece of technology.

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    Specialized Epic, Cannondale Scalpel. I'm sure Giant will have something nice for 2012. Santa Cruz is a very popular trail bike around here (southern Ontario) and a lot of racers ride the Epic.

  5. #5
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    ripley does look good (any ideas on price?) as does the new jet 9, i'd prefer a lightweight aluminium frame, maybe the old jet 9 or Giant. I tried an epic a few months ago, great ride but weighed a ton compared to my HT

  6. #6
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    Epic 29er', mine climbs like a mountain goat, the Epic comp 29er starts at around 28 pounds, I've got mine down to 25 1/2 pound, depends on budget, you can get them down to 22 pounds if you buy a S-Works bike, the more you spend on Epic models the lighter they get, even at 28 pounds its a great bike. Changes on mine are, Roval carbon wheels (1400 grams), S-works carbon bars, Crank Bros carbon seatpost, 2/10 w/XO cassette, Rocket Rons.
    Four wheels transport the body,

    Two wheels transport the soul !!!!

  7. #7
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    Epic 29er.

  8. #8
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    I've got a 2011 Trek Superfly 100 Elite; stock components, XTR pedals, and tubeless is 25.0lb in size L.

    The 2012 Superfly 100 Pro looks even nicer...

  9. #9
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    anthem x 29er

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    Not to be a hater, but I'd be nervous getting a Trek. I race against a guy that's on his 3rd Trek Superfly elite frame. He works at a bike shop too. Only reason he's still riding it is because he's been able to keep getting warrentied frames, and, as a Trek employee, doesn't have much other choice for a 29er FS. First one broke at the dropouts, second one his drive side chainstay snapped just riding some rocks.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by cabbgage View Post
    I tried an epic a few months ago, great ride but weighed a ton compared to my HT
    I hate to point out the obvious, but any FS should weight more than a decently specced HT...

    And if you want an alloy bike, I would go for the Epic. Bloody brilliant ride. And that brain...

  12. #12
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    Epic 29er, absolutely awesome bike. Got my expert to 23lbs even ready to ride. Smoken

    DFH

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by ryguy135 View Post
    Not to be a hater, but I'd be nervous getting a Trek. I race against a guy that's on his 3rd Trek Superfly elite frame. He works at a bike shop too. Only reason he's still riding it is because he's been able to keep getting warrentied frames, and, as a Trek employee, doesn't have much other choice for a 29er FS. First one broke at the dropouts, second one his drive side chainstay snapped just riding some rocks.
    Love my Superfly, have had zero issues and by far the fastest FS rig I have had to date.

  14. #14
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    Intense Spider 29er - VPP Goodness, and made in USA.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 29 dual suspension for racing-spider%252029%2520red.jpg  


  15. #15
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    nothing like a picture to get the blood boiling, spider looks real nice... I'm keeping an eye on the new moots mx divide, titanium is a great material, but it might be out of my price range.
    http://www.bikerumor.com/wp-content/...sion-MTB01.jpg

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by kherron View Post
    I've got a 2011 Trek Superfly 100 Elite; stock components, XTR pedals, and tubeless is 25.0lb in size L.

    The 2012 Superfly 100 Pro looks even nicer...
    I did my first race on my 2012 Superfly 100 Elite last Saturday. It weighs 26.2 stock w/o pedals. The bike was really great, I'll probably never race a hardtail again.
    The bike is never the limiting factor imho in any race, its the rider first and tire choice second ahead of any 2 lb weight reduction in the whole bike methinks.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by cabbgage View Post
    nothing like a picture to get the blood boiling, spider looks real nice... I'm keeping an eye on the new moots mx divide, titanium is a great material, but it might be out of my price range.
    http://www.bikerumor.com/wp-content/...sion-MTB01.jpg
    Looks cool, but Moots already makes a 29er 4" travel single pivot bike called the Mooto XZ. What were they trying to accomplish with this new one?

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by smilinsteve View Post
    Intense Spider 29er - VPP Goodness, and made in USA.
    That red Spider frame looks drool-worthy.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by JonathanGennick View Post
    That red Spider frame looks drool-worthy.
    Yep! They call it "Works Red" which is a red tinted clear coat over their raw aluminum, I think. Definitely a beautiful finish.

  20. #20
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    My suggestion:

    Considering that you made the request that it needs to be a good climber, then:

    Hardtail carbon 29er frame

    Large volume tubeless tires

    You may be surprised at how well this set up does. I am not sure how "extreme" the terrain is where you live, but I would look into this at the very least.

    The set up will be simpler, lighter, and most likely a better climber imo..

    Plus, you might save a few $$

    I have done both. IMO, a full susp 29er is complete overkill (especially for racing) where I live in S. Cal..

    .02

  21. #21
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    I love my Anthem 29er.

    Climbs good enough to race in the XC scene (the real question is, are YOU good enough ). While keeping up easily on decents with my friends on 6 inch travel bikes, on the weekends.

    This bike is incredible!!
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  22. #22
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    It seems like this is the right place to ask this-

    Are 29 inch wheels not enough added inertia to exclude them from being realistic in racing? I've shied away from 29 because of what amounts to over 9 inches of extra rim and tire. That's a hell of a lot of weight, is it not?

    Caution- the answer to this may or may not bring me into the 29er arena. I'm drooling over the Ibis Ripley, but waiting until it's a 26 version.
    Note to self: 85% of FTP for 20 min.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gregg K View Post
    It seems like this is the right place to ask this-

    Are 29 inch wheels not enough added inertia to exclude them from being realistic in racing? I've shied away from 29 because of what amounts to over 9 inches of extra rim and tire. That's a hell of a lot of weight, is it not?

    Caution- the answer to this may or may not bring me into the 29er arena. I'm drooling over the Ibis Ripley, but waiting until it's a 26 version.
    The only fair response to this is give one a try.

    The added mass can be minimised with a good light weight tyre and tubeless setup on a good wheelset.

    Sure, it might accelerate slightly slower (personally, I cannot really tell and those that do claim it - people I know who ride them - I suspect are slightly full of ****), however they hold their speed far better.

    Honestly, if you are thinking of it, try one and form your own opinion.

    As for too heavy - the world's were won by Kulhavy on a 29er Epic. On which he raced all season. And won a lot.

  24. #24
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    That's probably the best way. But I am asking here because I have trust in the people who post on this part of the forum. And there's no way I'm going to get to ride a 29er where I live.

    I'm riding a lot of difficult climbing where I live. 15-20% death climbs. Any added effort would make these less enjoyable than they already are.

    I did race against some Team Scalpels a year ago. Same climbs I do on my daily ride. And they took 15 minutes out of me in 15 miles. But then they're pros.

    I like the idea of big wheels. But I have always been in the front of the light weight wheel advocates. That's rotating mass, not just regular weight off the bike.

    Anyways...speaking of riding. It's the hottest day of the year here. 71 degrees! Time for a ride.
    Note to self: 85% of FTP for 20 min.

  25. #25
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    Fair enough. Might pay to have a look in the 29er forum then. I believe that there was a thread there dedicated to the climbing ability of 29ers.

    Enjoy the ride.

  26. #26
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    Thanks. I hadn't thought of that. Duh...

    I see your post there. Another Ripley drooler.
    Note to self: 85% of FTP for 20 min.

  27. #27
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    Rydbyk...can you suggest a large volume tyre that can handle a lot of rocks. I tried large tyres on my 26 but just ripped them too easily. My races now are in the 2 1/2 hour region and my back is suffering (40 years old too).
    i started racing 29ers last year, a typical race for me climbes 1200m, my current air nine weighs 9.5 kg. There is no real weight penalty for a 29er, and they climb great.

  28. #28
    mnoutain bkie rdier
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    Quote Originally Posted by cabbgage View Post
    Rydbyk...can you suggest a large volume tyre that can handle a lot of rocks. I tried large tyres on my 26 but just ripped them too easily. My races now are in the 2 1/2 hour region and my back is suffering (40 years old too).
    i started racing 29ers last year, a typical race for me climbes 1200m, my current air nine weighs 9.5 kg. There is no real weight penalty for a 29er, and they climb great.
    Not too many rocks around here. So, no I can't recommend a rock-durable large volume tire.
    Sorry.
    Anyone...anyone...??

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gregg K View Post
    Thanks. I hadn't thought of that. Duh...

    I see your post there. Another Ripley drooler.
    Definitely. It is one hot bike!

  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by rydbyk View Post
    Not too many rocks around here. So, no I can't recommend a rock-durable large volume tire.
    Sorry.
    Anyone...anyone...??
    Specialized Purgatory 2.3 Control (thicker side-walls). Not the lightest though.

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gregg K View Post
    It seems like this is the right place to ask this-
    and
    Are 29 inch wheels not enough added inertia to exclude them from being realistic in racing? I've shied away from 29 because of what amounts to over 9 inches of extra rim and tire. That's a hell of a lot of weight, is it not?

    Caution- the answer to this may or may not bring me into the 29er arena. I'm drooling over the Ibis Ripley, but waiting until it's a 26 version.
    The number of racers using 29ers is a good indication. And as was mentioned, the worlds were won on a 29er.

    Extra weight maybe, but lower rolling resistance inherent in larger diameter wheels, and an advantage rolling over surface irregularities increases the RR benefit on rough surfaces.

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by smilinsteve View Post
    The number of racers using 29ers is a good indication. And as was mentioned, the worlds were won on a 29er.

    Extra weight maybe, but lower rolling resistance inherent in larger diameter wheels, and an advantage rolling over surface irregularities increases the RR benefit on rough surfaces.
    Thanks. That actually does help knowing the pro's are riding them.

    The funny thing is, I am a mechanical engineer. I followed that thread over on the 29'er forum. But I had never actually run numbers. It does come down to mass. And the way things are going with carbon rims and tubeless, it's not as big a deal as I thought it is.

    One thing I haven't seen anyone mention is radius of curvature. That's the reason for better traction with the bigger wheels.
    Note to self: 85% of FTP for 20 min.

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gregg K View Post
    One thing I haven't seen anyone mention is radius of curvature. That's the reason for better traction with the bigger wheels.
    And the smoothness of the ride. Something like the angle of attack (rate of curvature I guess) being 6% less (?)....damn my old memory not being able to remember what I read and where!

  34. #34
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    The first time i rode a 29er over rough terrian, i thought wow! That's how good the big wheels work over uneven terrain. I'm sure that equates to a lot of energy saving over the course of a race, which can't be calculated by watt machines etc.

  35. #35
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    29ers are definately smooth

    Quote Originally Posted by Gregg K View Post
    Thanks. That actually does help knowing the pro's are riding them.

    The funny thing is, I am a mechanical engineer. I followed that thread over on the 29'er forum. But I had never actually run numbers. It does come down to mass. And the way things are going with carbon rims and tubeless, it's not as big a deal as I thought it is.

    One thing I haven't seen anyone mention is radius of curvature. That's the reason for better traction with the bigger wheels.
    I couldn't believe how smooth the front of a 29er hardtail rides.

    My 29er trial

    But wheel/tire weight is absolutely critical in the 29er size. You can really tell if you are on a cheap/heavy set when climbing. IMHO, the good thing is that small tires in the 29er version ride better than on a 26er, and it is possible to run a given tire width at a lower pressure on the 29er than the 26er.

    Also, 29er makes it possible for old guys to race hardtails again.

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by smilinsteve View Post
    Yep! They call it "Works Red" which is a red tinted clear coat over their raw aluminum, I think. Definitely a beautiful finish.
    Uh-Oh...Sue-happy Specialized might not like them using "Works" in their naming. A perceived threat to their "S-Works".

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gregg K View Post
    Thanks. That actually does help knowing the pro's are riding them.

    The funny thing is, I am a mechanical engineer. I followed that thread over on the 29'er forum. But I had never actually run numbers. It does come down to mass. And the way things are going with carbon rims and tubeless, it's not as big a deal as I thought it is.

    One thing I haven't seen anyone mention is radius of curvature. That's the reason for better traction with the bigger wheels.
    I've been riding 29ers for about 4 years now. GF Superfly and now the Anthem. I'm also a mechanical engineer. These are my experiences:

    Bad points of 29er:
    -Higher rotational mass of inertia (what the numbers say; not something I can feel)
    -Higher weight (but both 29ers are lighter than my previous 26er)
    -Flexier wheels (that, I can feel)
    -Bike fit for very small riders

    Good points:
    -Larger entry/departure angles which results in a smoother ride. More noticable if you live in rough terrain.
    -Lower rolling resistance (read this in a lab test; I really can't tell)
    -Better climbing and cornering traction due to longer contact patch (I could definitely tell the difference)
    -More stability on high speed descents, thus giving me more speed.

    But after 4 years, and living and riding in Utah terrain, there's no way I'd go back to a 26er. And we have long-steep climbs as well. My fully 29er is just too versatile. The domain of its competency is so wide: from XC racing to pretty rough all-mountain riding with my buddies on their 6-inch travel bikes. It does both really good.

    And it's my estimation that the energy difference in accelerating the larger wheels is miniscule compared to the energy it takes to accelerate the mass of the your body and bike. That's why racers are doing well on either wheel type. At the end, it's still about the rider.
    Last edited by Poncharelli; 09-20-2011 at 11:31 AM.
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  38. #38
    It's the axle
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    Stevemtu, thanks for that review. Very informative.

    Poncharelli, just the comments I was looking for. Another ME on a mountain bike!

    It's funny how this sport never ceases to be exciting. It just gets better. I'm anxious to start building the next bike.
    Note to self: 85% of FTP for 20 min.

  39. #39
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    So do you guys think im better sticking to my 29er ht and maybe getting some big tyres or are full suspension bikes the way to go?

  40. #40
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    Depends on what you ride and what works for you. No-one else can say. If HT is currently fine, no need. If you are curious, try getting one to test. But I would not say that FS is a must.

  41. #41
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    I've not ridden a 29er FS

    Quote Originally Posted by cabbgage View Post
    So do you guys think im better sticking to my 29er ht and maybe getting some big tyres or are full suspension bikes the way to go?
    But I would put the comfort level of a 29er carbon HT with low pressure tubeless pretty much right in between a 26 carbon HT and a 4 inch 26 FS with a platform shock (my other two rides)

  42. #42
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    You are starting to get within this price range

    Castellano Silk Ti. Only 1.75" of travel but down in the low 4.something weight range. If you get one please share all pertinent info.

    Note you have no platform or lock out on the 1 3/4 inches

  43. #43
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    Just finished an excellent racing season on an '11 Epic Comp. I'm a convert at this point. It can stand to lose some weight, but I did just fine with some changes made to it such as going with a 2x10 gearing set-up.

    So yes, racing a 29'r FS is absolutely reasonable. Keep the motor in check and the bike will follow suit.
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  44. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by cabbgage View Post
    So do you guys think im better sticking to my 29er ht and maybe getting some big tyres or are full suspension bikes the way to go?
    I only went with the 29er fully because this season I had pretty bad back problems. And our weekly series race course is very hard on the lower back. A lot of embedded rock.
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  45. #45
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    I race a full-suspension 29er and love it. My XL-sized 2011 Jet 9 is only 24.5 pounds with 1x10. A hardtail with fat tires won't descend as fast as a real full-suspension bike. Try hitting some downhill moguls at speed. But most importantly, for me, the FS corners better.

  46. #46
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    I've race a FS 29er (2011 Epic) for the last year, and coming off a 29er HT (C'dale Flash Carbon). I have to say that the Epic is a much better race bike if you can only own one race bike. The Flash is a great bike, and was 2 - 3 lbs lighter than the Epic, but since I can only have one bike, I would pick the Epic every time. It climbs as well than the flash (better in rough stuff), corners on rails, and is very smooth. I would go with the FS bike with big tires. Ikon EXOs, Racing Ralphs, or something else like that. IMO, small tires (less than or equal to 2.1) are a waste of time, at least for east coast riding.
    Brought to you by rocks.

  47. #47
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    The local guy destroys our series and he usually wins the DINO races on his Anthem 29er. With a lefty you lose a pound.
    There is not much choice between rotten apples.

  48. #48
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    My vote goes for the scott spark. But, im honestly just a fanboi of the company. It does look promising though with the carbon models and the three travel settings could come in pretty handy.
    -It's time to shred some mild to moderate gnar!!

  49. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by texasnavy05 View Post
    My vote goes for the scott spark. But, im honestly just a fanboi of the company. It does look promising though with the carbon models and the three travel settings could come in pretty handy.
    I like your honesty.
    There is not much choice between rotten apples.

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