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  1. #1
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    Best 27.5 + Hardtail with 29er upside?

    Which of the 27.5 plus hardtails would you think of first as a bike that can double as a good XC 29er? Frame attributes might including being relatively light, where the head angle ends up with 29 wheels (~ 68 deg), etc. I'd like to get a plus hardtail that would still make sense for longer rides/XC races with some wagon wheels on it!
    A local guy has a Norco Torrent that I can look at, but while it is tempting common sense is telling me that it's not the right bike... head angle is 66.5 with the 27.5 wheels.
    Thanks in advance...

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by JScoot View Post
    Which of the 27.5 plus hardtails would you think of first as a bike that can double as a good XC 29er? Frame attributes might including being relatively light, where the head angle ends up with 29 wheels (~ 68 deg), etc. I'd like to get a plus hardtail that would still make sense for longer rides/XC races with some wagon wheels on it!
    A local guy has a Norco Torrent that I can look at, but while it is tempting common sense is telling me that it's not the right bike... head angle is 66.5 with the 27.5 wheels.
    Thanks in advance...
    Trek Stache with a 140mm fork.
    Bike comes 29x3" going to 140mm allows you to run 27.5+ and 29er. Trek says the 2019 models are 29+ only ( geo changes) but with the 140 fork everything works just fine. I have seen these bikes dip into the 19-21 lb range setup for true XC racing and around the 25-27lb range for trail riding.
    Too Many .

  3. #3
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    Head angle is not going to change with a change in wheel diameter as long as both tires/wheels are the same size, but the BB will be higher with 29".

    I think 66.5 degrees is a great all-around head angle for a hardtail. It will be a little steeper when accounting for fork sag.

  4. #4
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    Guerrilla Gravity Pedal Head.

    It has a modern geometry and will even take some 29+ ish tires depending on the fork you choose. I'm biased because we both own GG bikes and are from Denver. You can also save money because every build is semi custom. You pick all then components. Spend my money where you want and save on things you don't care about. For example: $50 upcharge for an MRP Ribbon Air .... Heck yes.


    https://ridegg.com/pedalhead



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  5. #5
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    Check the Specialized Fuse out. I have the current comp carbon model and have ridden it it in 27.5+ mode for the past 10 months. I just picked up a 29" wheel set and need to pick up a cassette and tires still. I have heard the Fuse in 29" mode is a rocket. I will be able to confirm or deny that in the next week or two.

    I will go on limb and say the Fuse in 29" is the hardtail version of the Epic EVO.
    Less f*cks to give every passing day, use them well. - geraldooka

  6. #6
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    Surly Karate Monkey.

    You know whenever you ask a question the proper answer is a steel solution.

  7. #7
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    XTC ADVANCED 27.5+ 1 or Santa Cruz Chameleon.
    It doesn't matter what I ride as long as I ride it Rubber Side Down●~●.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sandman29 View Post
    Surly Karate Monkey.

    You know whenever you ask a question the proper answer is a steel solution.
    This echoes my line of thinking.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by s0ckeyeus View Post
    Head angle is not going to change with a change in wheel diameter as long as both tires/wheels are the same size, but the BB will be higher with 29".

    I think 66.5 degrees is a great all-around head angle for a hardtail. It will be a little steeper when accounting for fork sag.
    You're right of course, though some frames like my current full suspension use "flip chips" when alternating wheel sizes, and I think that affects head angle. Still haven't tried it, but it's a 29er that can be run 27.5+.

    I may go ahead and look at the Torrent this weekend, though I know it's got a reputation for burliness and my current thinking is to get something that feels a little more xc. Has anyone owned one? I wonder how it compares to the gg pedalhead that was suggested. I have to be careful, looking turns into buying.... my fs banshee can cover the burly category.

  10. #10
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    Salsa Timberjack.
    Salsa Timberjack SS
    -Gears give me headaches

  11. #11
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    Orbea Loki / Laufey

  12. #12
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    I have a Spec Fuse. Built it burly with a longer fork and durable parts. Have raced it to a few podiums in hardtail enduros with plus wheels and have done marathon rides (70 miler a few weeks ago) with 29er wheels and XC tires.

    If you want the logical answer for your question, a Pivot Les would probably be right up your alley. Steeper angles with the ability to run both wheel sizes.

  13. #13
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    Chromag:

    Rootdown or
    Primer

  14. #14
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    +1 for the Sant Cruz chameleon

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by JScoot View Post
    You're right of course, though some frames like my current full suspension use "flip chips" when alternating wheel sizes, and I think that affects head angle. Still haven't tried it, but it's a 29er that can be run 27.5+.

    I may go ahead and look at the Torrent this weekend, though I know it's got a reputation for burliness and my current thinking is to get something that feels a little more xc. Has anyone owned one? I wonder how it compares to the gg pedalhead that was suggested. I have to be careful, looking turns into buying.... my fs banshee can cover the burly category.
    I ride a Torrent 1 which I got less than 2 months ago. I would say it's a pretty burly bike. My medium weighs in at over 30 lbs with the 27.5+ setup so it's not a lightweight XC-oriented rig like you're looking for. You might cut some weight with a 29'er setup. If you have access to one you might as well try it out. I demo'd a Chameleon in 29'er form but it wasn't as fun to me but I also thought the same about other 29'ers (FS and HT) as they just weren't for me so take that into account.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by m2_boy View Post
    I ride a Torrent 1 which I got less than 2 months ago. I would say it's a pretty burly bike. My medium weighs in at over 30 lbs with the 27.5+ setup so it's not a lightweight XC-oriented rig like you're looking for. You might cut some weight with a 29'er setup. If you have access to one you might as well try it out. I demo'd a Chameleon in 29'er form but it wasn't as fun to me but I also thought the same about other 29'ers (FS and HT) as they just weren't for me so take that into account.
    I've agreed to meet the seller tomorrow morning. He's giving me a pretty low price which makes it very hard for me to turn my eyes away. Says he only rode it 5 times. I love the look of some other bikes mentioned especially the Chameleon, but don't want to (actually can't) be paying full price.
    How well do you like the Torrent after two months? Any significant strengths/weaknesses?

  17. #17
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    If you want something that will really be able to do all you're asking, the new Ibis DV9 would be my answer. Can take 29x2.6", so assume it will easily fit B+ 2.8", it's light, angles are anything crazzy, just nice all around trail type and the frame is carbon for $999 If I was seriously into HT and wanted something lighter than my Unit, I think this would be it.

    https://www.ibiscycles.com/bikes/dv9/
    One day your life will flash before your eyes, will it be worth watching??

  18. #18
    Anytime. Anywhere.
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    There is a wide range of options, but if you are leaning towards Pedalhead or Rootdown territory then the Pipedream Moxie may be a better option, depending on your height. The geometry suits me better with the short seat tube and long reach. It's low, but with 2.8 Butchers, big Kona WW2 pedals, and 165mm cranks I get no pedal strikes. Fantastic all rounder in 27.5+ or 29. http://forums.mtbr.com/29er-bikes/pi...e-1068714.html
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  19. #19
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    How about Nimble 9....29r with 27.5+ upside.


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  20. #20
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    I thought Canfield was out of business.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by brent701 View Post
    Trek Stache with a 140mm fork.
    Bike comes 29x3" going to 140mm allows you to run 27.5+ and 29er. Trek says the 2019 models are 29+ only ( geo changes) but with the 140 fork everything works just fine. I have seen these bikes dip into the 19-21 lb range setup for true XC racing and around the 25-27lb range for trail riding.
    This "may" be okay with the 2017 and older Alu frames, but the new geo on the carbon frames and new-gen alu frames aren't too 27.5+ friendly. The Stache was always intended to be a 29+ bike. There was an article on it saying how versatile it is (old gen model) because you can run 27.5+, 29, 29+...but the reviewers said they don't know why anyone would do that to this bike. It's a 29+ bike that rides like a nimble 27.5 bike...plus the benefits of low psi cush, traction, rollover.

    I love my Stache...it's the best bike I've ever owned (2017 Alu) but I just don't think neutering it down to a 29er or 27.5+ is doing it justice...and would drop the BB too low for my taste.


    Different strokes though...it'll be okay for some, I'm sure.

  22. #22
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    Well thanks for all the well-reasoned replies, lots of great bikes mentioned that would tick a lot of boxes. Unfortunately, though I present like a rational person most of the time, every now and then my weakness for a deal gets the better of me. Then I do stuff like start a thread about an xc-oriented plus bike, and the next day buy a 30-pound all-mountain hardtail (he only wanted a thousand bucks, what was I supposed to say?).
    Honestly I think I'm going to like the Norco just fine. Took it on a 9 mile techy loop with climbs right away. It's different, but also like a matched pair with my banshee, ... guess I just have a thing for heavy Canadian bikes.

  23. #23
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    I just picked up a s-works Fuse frame and built it up with a pike, XT/XTR parts and 27.5+.

    Bike is 26.3 lbs with pedals and SWAT tools. I built it for the hell of it but Iíve been very impressed with it to the point where I considered selling my Blur and using the fuse on 29s for races.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by JScoot View Post
    Well thanks for all the well-reasoned replies, lots of great bikes mentioned that would tick a lot of boxes. Unfortunately, though I present like a rational person most of the time, every now and then my weakness for a deal gets the better of me. Then I do stuff like start a thread about an xc-oriented plus bike, and the next day buy a 30-pound all-mountain hardtail (he only wanted a thousand bucks, what was I supposed to say?).
    Honestly I think I'm going to like the Norco just fine. Took it on a 9 mile techy loop with climbs right away. It's different, but also like a matched pair with my banshee, ... guess I just have a thing for heavy Canadian bikes.
    Congrats! I'm not a fast climber and this heavy bike doesn't help but it's really fun on the descents and for some reason I missed riding a HT. That being said, I wouldn't mind being able to shed a pound two off it (and a few more off myself).

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by m2_boy View Post
    Congrats! I'm not a fast climber and this heavy bike doesn't help but it's really fun on the descents and for some reason I missed riding a HT. That being said, I wouldn't mind being able to shed a pound two off it (and a few more off myself).
    Thanks, I'm stoked about it. I just test fit my 29er wheels and a 29x2.6 fit in the rear with gobs of extra clearance, I'd guess you could run a 2.8 back there no problem. And in the front, it accepted my Bomboloni which is 29 x about 2.8... pretty close to the mudguard but cleared the bridge just fine. I'm really glad to find out it has so much clearance for 29er tires, that was one thing I hadn't been able to find out online.

    I need a 12 speed cassette to make the wheels interchangeable with my other bike, I'm thinking I may get one of the GX Eagle groupsets and sell off the 11 speed stuff. Won't make it lighter, but I'll just have to live with that for now!

  26. #26
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    Kona Big Honzo
    Rigid SS 29er
    SS 29+
    Fat Lefty
    SS cyclocross
    Full Sus 29er (Yuck)

    Stop asking how much it weighs and just go ride it.

  27. #27
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    The problem I'm seeing with the Ibis DV9 is the short reach. 435 for a large with a steep seat tube angle. Short torso bike.

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by eb1888 View Post
    The problem I'm seeing with the Ibis DV9 is the short reach. 435 for a large with a steep seat tube angle. Short torso bike.
    72-73 degree seattube angle. Pretty slack by modern standards, not steep.

    I agree the reach is short, but this bike is half old school XC. There are many more progressive frames out there.
    Rigid SS 29er
    SS 29+
    Fat Lefty
    SS cyclocross
    Full Sus 29er (Yuck)

    Stop asking how much it weighs and just go ride it.

  29. #29
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    Yeah you're right on the seat tube angle.

  30. #30
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    Good timing on this thread!! I am debating on getting a Specialized Fuse Expert 27.5 or a Santa Cruz Chameleon R+. I am leaning more towards getting the Fuse i believe
    2016 TREK Domane 5.9
    2017 Trek Remedy 8

  31. #31
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    Hey Onespeed. So what do you have in your radar that is more progressive geo than the DV9 in the 29 format that will take 2.6 or bigger tires that doesn't weigh a bunch more.
    That is what I am looking for like the OP.
    Seems like its difficult to find a 27.5 plus that isn't heavy. Limited options in carbon plus bikes.... you still need to climb and where I ride there is plenty of climbing. Thx.
    Last edited by wallydog; 1 Week Ago at 09:04 AM.

  32. #32
    Back of the pack fat guy
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    Just built up a Niner Air 9 alloy as a 27.5+.

  33. #33
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    Felt Surplus, I have one and run both wheel sets.
    2017 Specialized 6 Fattie Carbon
    2017 Felt Surplus 30
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    2015 Felt DD30 fat bike

  34. #34
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    Hands down surly KM. 150 pike 27.5x2.8 is a monster on descents. 29x2.6 is slower down but climbs like a goat.

    I've ridden this frame rigid 27.5x3, 100mm and 29x2.5, 130mm 29x2.5, 150mm 29x2.5 and its current state 150mm 27.5x2.8

    So far my favorite setup is the 27.5x2.8 on baron wheels and 150 pike with rear wheel slammed forward.



  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by oloug View Post
    Hands down surly KM. 150 pike 27.5x2.8 is a monster on descents. 29x2.6 is slower down but climbs like a goat.

    I've ridden this frame rigid 27.5x3, 100mm and 29x2.5, 130mm 29x2.5, 150mm 29x2.5 and its current state 150mm 27.5x2.8

    So far my favorite setup is the 27.5x2.8 on baron wheels and 150 pike with rear wheel slammed forward.
    Bike looks nice, can you say more about why the KM is the best hardtail 27.5+?

  36. #36
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    Definitely not the best but if you're looking for options for both 29 and 27.5, this isn't a super slack aggressive frame, it's a great balance.

    I'm actually switching my full suspension components to a Nordest Bardino and making the KM a ss 29er rigid. I like to switch up bike setups but so far the KM is best ran as a 27.5+.

    I'll update on the nordest bardino once I have it built

  37. #37
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    Another vote for the new Kona Big Honzo. Iím debating on building one up or getting 29+ wheels for my fatbike

  38. #38
    always licking the glass
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    Quote Originally Posted by gundrted View Post
    Guerrilla Gravity Pedal Head.

    It has a modern geometry and will even take some 29+ ish tires depending on the fork you choose. I'm biased because we both own GG bikes and are from Denver. You can also save money because every build is semi custom. You pick all then components. Spend my money where you want and save on things you don't care about. For example: $50 upcharge for an MRP Ribbon Air .... Heck yes.


    https://ridegg.com/pedalhead
    +1. This is my first hardtail in 10 years, and I absolutely love it. I run mine with 2.8 650B tires.
    Guerrilla Gravity BAMF, Colorado Front Range
    Hadley hubs for sale

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