Is 27.5 still relevant?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Is 27.5 still relevant?



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    Riding Washington State singletrack since 1986

  2. #2
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    Cool video. I watched the whole thing to see if you would actually make it under 10 minutes, or have a heart attack. Nice riding!

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  3. #3
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    So are you saying it is, or isn't? Norco Sights come in 27.5 and 29, but I assume this is 27.5 since you're in the 27.5 forum.....nice ride BTW!
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  4. #4
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    650b will be relevant as long as there's short people.

    Great video. Good camera work, loved the hud, awesome attitude wrt trail users, and a neat trail. Gawped at the who vid. I guess if you can KOM with baby wheels there's no reason to go faster.
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    Is the Pope Catholic?

  6. #6
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    Here I am having a miserable time on my 27.5 wheels

    https://youtu.be/Wm_ot9zZTOs

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by AJAtlas102 View Post
    I'm average height and pretty much hated every 29er I've ever ridden.
    I wouldn't say I hated them all, like you, but I found them all sterile feeling. This is based on a lot of demos I did a year ago, including many popular 29ers.

  8. #8
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    I just find 275 more fun to ride, and that's all that matters to me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by d365 View Post
    I just find 275 more fun to ride, and that's all that matters to me.
    And that is the key

    Yes 27.5 should stick around. I prefer 29 now but would still have a 2nd bike 27.5 if I had a bike park around.

  10. #10
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    I kinda sorta a little bit am starting to find 29ers more fun to ride too... Not always, but sometimes.

    I was a very long time hold out, but the offsets got dialed. Geometry works properly now. 29ers are fun to ride, its not really a lumbering school bus anymore. I still 90% of the time ride my 27.5 and love it to death, but if I stumbled across a really nice 130mm FS 29er, I might jump ship...

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by One Pivot View Post
    I kinda sorta a little bit am starting to find 29ers more fun to ride too... Not always, but sometimes.

    I was a very long time hold out, but the offsets got dialed. Geometry works properly now. 29ers are fun to ride, its not really a lumbering school bus anymore. I still 90% of the time ride my 27.5 and love it to death, but if I stumbled across a really nice 130mm FS 29er, I might jump ship...
    Imo there's nothing magical about offset (or wheel size), it's just trail and front-center. Get those right and you're good. High/low offset forks are a great tuning tool.

    Personally, i like the combination of a high offset fork, slack head angle, and long front-center. You get stability from the length and can still steer quickly around individual obstacles. Just gotta have a light touch at the bars. It works great for old school singletrack.


    I look forward to when wheel size is totally uninteresting. Prolly never gonna happen since that's bad for sales.
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  12. #12
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    FWIW, that's not my video. I found it on YouTube and thought it sort of looked like a slalom ski race. I thought those repeated quick turns would be easier on a 27.5 bike like short slalom skis.
    Riding Washington State singletrack since 1986

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by scottzg View Post
    650b will be relevant as long as there's short people.

    Great video. Good camera work, loved the hud, awesome attitude wrt trail users, and a neat trail. Gawped at the who vid. I guess if you can KOM with baby wheels there's no reason to go faster.
    I'd guess that 27.5 would only be faster only in very particular circumstances, like the trail shown. In those very tight turns, the lesser inertia than 29 would help.
    Riding Washington State singletrack since 1986

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Curveball View Post
    I'd guess that 27.5 would only be faster only in very particular circumstances, like the trail shown. In those very tight turns, the lesser inertia than 29 would help.
    imo this concept persists because shorter riders don't fit 29'er wheels very well and are trying to explain why it feels shitty. From a design perspective- there's plenty of variables available to make either wheel size behave however the designer wants, assuming a sufficiently tall rider. Gotta get all that stuff right for the small 29er advantage to manifest.

    That trail should be faster on a 29er, if it fits right. Granted the difference is extra small because it's smooth, pedally, and slow.

    (i'm not a 29er evangelist, i'm a frame design nerd)
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by scottzg View Post
    imo this concept persists because shorter riders don't fit 29'er wheels very well and are trying to explain why it feels shitty. From a design perspective- there's plenty of variables available to make either wheel size behave however the designer wants, assuming a sufficiently tall rider. Gotta get all that stuff right for the small 29er advantage to manifest.

    That trail should be faster on a 29er, if it fits right. Granted the difference is extra small because it's smooth, pedally, and slow.

    (i'm not a 29er evangelist, i'm a frame design nerd)
    Perhaps you should familiarize yourself with the physics concept of moment of inertia. Geometry certainly plays a large part, it looks like a bit steeper HA would take those tight turns better than super-slack for example.
    Riding Washington State singletrack since 1986

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Curveball View Post
    Perhaps you should familiarize yourself with the physics concept of moment of inertia. Geometry certainly plays a large part, it looks like a bit steeper HA would take those tight turns better than super-slack for example.
    I know it sounds dismissive, but this reply is dunning-krueger effect in action. Sorry.

    I love talking about this, but moment of inertia and head angle as a driving dimension aren't worth discussing. They're footnotes. Get yourself up to date and let's talk! There's so much interesting nuance once you're not making spurious correlations. It's fascinating when everyone understands the real trade-offs.
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  17. #17
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    Would a short wheelbase 29r work there?

  18. #18
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    Prefacing this: Iím 5í5Ē, and I fit comfortably on both 27.5 and 29 bikes.

    I test rode a few 29ers over the years, thinking this would be the year I would end up with one. Nope.

    All my previous concerns on a 29er today though, gone. They corner, descend, and even pop off things. But for me, they kill me on the climbs. As in my hip was hurting for three days. I spend a lot of time accelerating on my rides, and on a 27.5 bike, Iím faster because itís easier for me to get the bike up to speed. And I like riding without having to nurse pain for 3 days and be miserable.

    Honestly, itís not just a height thing or a sex thing óitís a preference thing. My husband is 5í10Ē, hates 29ers. Says they make great DH bikes, but nothing he wants to pedal. Thereís several of my friends who are tall and prefer the 27.5 wheel too. Then again, there are short people I know who like to push the 29, but thatís a really big wheel for me to push.

    So no, theyíre not dead and thereís plenty of people who want to ride them. As much as the industry would like to force everyone on a single wheel size, that would be dumb from an increasing your market perspective.
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  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by scottzg View Post
    I know it sounds dismissive, but this reply is dunning-krueger effect in action. Sorry.

    I love talking about this, but moment of inertia and head angle as a driving dimension aren't worth discussing. They're footnotes. Get yourself up to date and let's talk! There's so much interesting nuance once you're not making spurious correlations. It's fascinating when everyone understands the real trade-offs.
    Physics is a footnote?

    Here you go, since apparently you really don't understand the physics of it.

    Moment of Inertia

    I believe that this physical concept is up to date and not a spurious correlation.
    Riding Washington State singletrack since 1986

  20. #20
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    For those not in the know, Dunning Krueger is that thing where the less a person knows, the more they think they know

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  21. #21
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    IMO the sweet spot for 27.5 is fast trail bikes. Thunderbolt, 5010, spider, samurai, and etc. Running combinations like MM/RockRazor, morsa/xr5, and etc. Something that pedals xc fast but shaves 3 pounds off it's similar 29er bike. I am 6'2 and prefer 27.5 for the riding I enjoy.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by RS VR6 View Post
    Would a short wheelbase 29r work there?
    I'd guess even a long wheelbase 29r would work there. It just wouldn't be as quick through the tight turns and might take more effort.
    Riding Washington State singletrack since 1986

  23. #23
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    What I'm saying is that a shorter bike will handle quicker than a long wheelbase bike. So a long 29er will handle like a barge compared to a short wheelbase 29er.

    My 27.5 is my "big bike". It handles a bit slower than my short travel 29er. The 27.5 wheels on a longer bike makes it handles less like a battering ram. I'm only 5'8". Longer travel...I prefer the 27.5.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by RS VR6 View Post
    What I'm saying is that a shorter bike will handle quicker than a long wheelbase bike. So a long 29er will handle like a barge compared to a short wheelbase 29er.

    My 27.5 is my "big bike". It handles a bit slower than my short travel 29er. The 27.5 wheels on a longer bike makes it handles less like a battering ram. I'm only 5'8". Longer travel...I prefer the 27.5.
    Yeah, my long-travel and slack 27.5 would likely be a real handful on that particular trail.

    Certainly a shorter bike would be better on a trail like that. You could likely do it on a longer bike, but it might not be too fun.
    Riding Washington State singletrack since 1986

  25. #25
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    I have both a 29er and a 27.5 and enjoy both and if I had to choose one I would probably go with the 27.5.

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  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Curveball View Post
    Yeah, my long-travel and slack 27.5 would likely be a real handful on that particular trail.

    Certainly a shorter bike would be better on a trail like that. You could likely do it on a longer bike, but it might not be too fun.
    Wasn't there a Pinkbike article about pro DH riders riding their bikes 1, or 2 sizes smaller than normaly, because the bikes are just too big and long for actual races?

    Anyway. I like my 27er bikes. I'm 6,4 but only ride 27 for now. I tried and owned a few 29er, but didn't like them so much. Except one.

    What I have found out is, that playfullness not just has something to do with different geometries, or wheel sizes.
    Weight plays a huge role too.

    My 160mm main trail bike ( 27er ) is
    about 12,8 kg and it is dang fun to ride.
    My 180mm park bike, also 27, on the other hand is around 15,5 kg and only fun if you plow down the lines at very high speed which is actually the reason why I got it.

    The best and fun 29er I rode was a Scott Ransome. A big bike with 170mm travel.
    But it was so light. I could barly belive I was riding a 29er. On climbing however I did not like the bigger wheels and those many triggers and cables from the twinlock are annoying.

  27. #27
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    If you want playful & nippy... get a 650b steed.

    If you want fast & ploughy... go 29er.

    NB, I'm not saying 29" can't be playful, just they can't be as playful as a dialled 27.5.

    Simple matter of physics 🧐

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  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by targnik View Post

    Simple matter of physics 🧐

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    You don't say...
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  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by OneTrustMan View Post
    What I have found out is, that playfullness not just has something to do with different geometries, or wheel sizes.
    Weight plays a huge role too.
    Oh yeah, a lighter bike would certainly be easier to throw back and forth through quick turns. I think that gets overlooked a bit.

    All that said, there aren't a whole lot of riding situations like the posted video that have so many very quick turns to make. For most people, in most riding situations, a bit heavier bike and bigger wheels are no disadvantage.
    Riding Washington State singletrack since 1986

  30. #30
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    Hi gang,
    Can a Salsa el Mariachi 2016 extra small frame take 27.5 wheels? The max tire wheel/tire size they recommend is 29 x 2.4, and minimum appears to be 29 x 2.1
    Could I get away with 27.5 x 47mm gravel tires?
    It would be a take off from another bike: the wheelset is already built with Velocity Aileron rims, I am not entirely sure of the rim width so I donít know what maximum tire width they would take, currently they have 47mm tires.
    I could not find BB drop info for the 2016 El Mar, but in other yearsí frames the BB drop is 60mm for the 2014-2017 models; 66mm for the 2013.
    The chainring I would transfer to the El Mar is 1 x 35t. They recommend 1 x 32t max.
    Other compatibility questions are (maybe for another thread unless people donít mind answering here):
    transferring the BB and crankset from current 68 BB shell to 73 BB of the El Mar.
    31.8 Co-motion shifter transferred from road bar a MTB bar.
    TRP HyRd semi hydraulic brakes: can they work in a MTB setup? What MTB brake levers can they work with?
    Thanks all! Let me know if Iíve missed anything.

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