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  1. #1
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    Way to take the lead, Yeti!

    I returned to the sport of mountain biking last year and decided, quickly, to buy my first Yeti. I just finished building up the perfect bike, an ASR-5 and couldn't be happier with it.

    As a Tribe member, I read this forum every day. One of the things I've read that interested me was a series of complaints that Yeti was slow to capitalize on the new trends in mountain biking -- particularly wheel sizes.

    Late to introduce a 29er.
    No 650b option.

    Opponents said this was an indicator that Yeti was slow, out of touch, and behind the times.
    Supporters said that Yeti took their time designing and testing instead of jumping on every new trend immediately like every other brand.

    The ARC Carbon ends the argument. Yeti is, as far as I know, the FIRST brand to fully utilize all wheel sizes available and design the bike for the rider, not for a specific wheel size. With the ARCc's XS and S sizes using 650b, Yeti realizes what a lot of people (and companies) know but are afraid to say: some small bikes and some small riders don't belong on a 29er. Look at some of the pictures of 5' 2" pro women riders on 29ers. Many are using -25 deg stems in order to get some semblance of a workable geometry solely to have 29" wheels.

    I think the trend started when they didn't introduce a Big Top in a small. Could they have? Sure. But obviously Yeti didn't feel it was the right size for that size frame and didn't release one.

    Yeti took a different approach and, in my opinion, broke new ground when it comes to selecting the right wheel size for the right frame and rider. The "we only make 29ers!!!!" mantra is dead and Yeti showed the industry how to do it right.

    Well done!
    I live with fear and danger every day. And on the weekends she lets me go mountain biking.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by KevinGT View Post

    I think the trend started when they didn't introduce a Big Top in a small. Could they have? Sure. But obviously Yeti didn't feel it was the right size for that size frame and didn't release one.

    Yeti took a different approach and, in my opinion, broke new ground when it comes to selecting the right wheel size for the right frame and rider. The "we only make 29ers!!!!" mantra is dead and Yeti showed the industry how to do it right.

    Well done!
    The new bikes look really good. But you must be tall. I'm shorter rider and don't I don't want a 650b bike. I already have a perfectly good 26". I want a Yeti with 29" wheels and the benefits of the bigger wheels, not something marginally bigger than what I have.

    I think the whole "oh - your are short -we have a perfectly good bike with wheels a few mm's bigger than what you have is the best fit for you" is the wrong direction though, IMHO. I want big wheels, not in between wheels. 5'2" women are winning races on 29ers because they figured out how to make their bikes fit! Sure it looks funny but it works!

  3. #3
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    it does seem a little paternalistic. let riders choose what wheel size they want, we don't need a company to decide if you're short. many companies have made small size bikes with 29 inch wheels, its not that f-ing hard. i feel like yeti makes 29ers while holding their noses. they've said as much in the past
    here we go again

  4. #4
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    Looking at the new SB95 Carbon I would say they have embraced 29er and are doing a fantastic job. They may not have seen the vision as soon as others but better late than never.

    When I rode my first 29er at Interbike 8 years ago I HATED IT. Felt like I was on a horse. Took me 7 years to ride one again and they have come a LONG way in that time. I still like 26" wheel bikes too but am sold on 29ers having their place.

    The new issue of Outside rated the SB95c as their favorite bike of 2013 out of over 50 new bikes. Job well done I say.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by eleven-yo View Post
    let riders choose what wheel size they want, we don't need a company to decide if you're short.
    I'm missing something. If there were all designed as 29", your choice is still limited to one wheel size. How would riders get to "choose" what wheel size they wanted?

  6. #6
    DLd
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    Quote Originally Posted by GSJ1973 View Post
    The new bikes look really good. But you must be tall. I'm shorter rider and don't I don't want a 650b bike. I already have a perfectly good 26". I want a Yeti with 29" wheels and the benefits of the bigger wheels, not something marginally bigger than what I have.

    I think the whole "oh - your are short -we have a perfectly good bike with wheels a few mm's bigger than what you have is the best fit for you" is the wrong direction though, IMHO. I want big wheels, not in between wheels. 5'2" women are winning races on 29ers because they figured out how to make their bikes fit! Sure it looks funny but it works!
    I think those same 5'2" women would have won their races even if they were on a 26" wheeled bike. It's the rider, not the bike. I have a good feeling you'll end up seeing a lot of those women and smaller-statured male riders switch to 27.5 in the next year or two, because a) their sponsors will want to sell the new bikes, and b) they don't need to make so many sacrifices on fit, and they'll still be winning races.

    Proof? How about Nino choosing to ride a 27.5 to avoid the sacrifices a shorter rider has to make with a 29'er. And winning. And Scott didn't even make a 27.5 hardtail at the time! That's an example of the rider really choosing the best performing wheel size for their stature.

    The folks who just want 29-inch wheels regardless of their stature really remind me of this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FL7yD-0pqZg
    "Great things are not accomplished by those who yield to trends and fads and popular opinion."-Jack Kerouac

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by DLd View Post
    I think those same 5'2" women would have won their races even if they were on a 26" wheeled bike. It's the rider, not the bike. I have a good feeling you'll end up seeing a lot of those women and smaller-statured male riders switch to 27.5 in the next year or two, because a) their sponsors will want to sell the new bikes, and b) they don't need to make so many sacrifices on fit, and they'll still be winning races.

    Proof? How about Nino choosing to ride a 27.5 to avoid the sacrifices a shorter rider has to make with a 29'er. And winning. And Scott didn't even make a 27.5 hardtail at the time! That's an example of the rider really choosing the best performing wheel size for their stature.

    The folks who just want 29-inch wheels regardless of their stature really remind me of this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FL7yD-0pqZg
    ^^^This.

    Women racing ill-fitting 29" bikes is a result of their sponsors being heavily invested in that wheel size. Nino's approach was much more rational and also more critical due to the level of comepetition in the Elite men's field. I expect to see way more short-statured men and women on the middle wheel size too - assuming they aren't sponsored by a hold-out company who refuses to give it a try.

  8. #8
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    Agree that adjusting the wheel size is a sensible move for different size bikes.. at last Yeti do what we all secretly knew was the situation and the elephant in the room was 29er wheels on all bike sizes.

    I suppose if a bike is designed from the ground up as a small with 29er wheels then it might be perfect.. however most bikes are designed around 1 size which is usually med/large and up/downscaled.

    Actually I think Yeti are giving riders the correct/better choice .. not forcing 1 wheel size on all frame
    sizes is more choice not less. The choice being the right size wheel for the right size frame/geometry so the bike rides how its designed to. Still some people might like how the geometry/handling is altered but Yeti are simply trying to do what they think is best.. makes absolute perfect sense and
    i'd be surprised if they aren't copied in this approach... just 1 wheel size is not cutting edge anymore... the right wheel size is... possibly :P

    Ohh and the new ARC Carbon has got to be one of the best looking bikes I've ever seen, whoever designed that needs a raise as it will sell on looks alone. If it rides half as good as it looks.... id be
    tempted to buy a HT again. For a bike that looks so good with such clean lines it needs fully internally routed cables IMO.

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