Stupid idea of the week: Balance 29er conversion- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Stupid idea of the week: Balance 29er conversion

    So. I discovered that a 29x2.3 DHR2 on a Boost hub fits in the rear of the 2016+ Balance with plenty of side clearance. I started crunching numbers:

    You'd have to prevent the shock from reaching the last 11mm of travel, reducing the total rear wheel travel to 135mm.

    You'd have to run a 140mm 29er fork with a zero-stack headset, which would put the head angle at 65.5 degrees.

    Bottom bracket height would go from 343mm to 363mm.

    For all that work you may as well just buy a Riot, but if any crazy fool wants to try building a mid-travel 29er with 420mm chainstays, there's your recipe.

    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Stupid idea of the week: Balance 29er conversion-img_7810.jpg  

    Stupid idea of the week: Balance 29er conversion-img_7809.jpg  

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  2. #2
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    That's a pretty interesting idea, I've wondered if it would be possible to take advantage of the 1 piece upper link and headtube gussets while also running 29er wheels. It looks like it's doable, though a bit of tweaking is definitely necessary. I would also be surprised if much more than a 2.3 rear tire could fit. Maybe a fun conversion if you already have a Balance.

  3. #3
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    Why not run more than 140mm fork? The brothers were short shocking balances a while back, there may be threads with the shock sizes they were using.

  4. #4
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    A 140mm 29er fork has the same axle-to-crown length as a 160mm 27.5 fork so it would keep the head angle the same.

  5. #5
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    Just keep in mind wheel height itself. Radius of 29 vs 27.5

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by eicca View Post
    So. I discovered that a 29x2.3 DHR2 on a Boost hub fits in the rear of the 2016+ Balance with plenty of side clearance.
    Ya, but what are you going to do with a road tire out back? #2.3isaPizzaCutter
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by eicca View Post
    So. I discovered that a 29x2.3 DHR2 on a Boost hub fits in the rear of the 2016+ Balance with plenty of side clearance. I started crunching numbers:

    You'd have to prevent the shock from reaching the last 11mm of travel, reducing the total rear wheel travel to 135mm.
    Did you ride it at all with 29 tires? I might give this a shot on my ‘15. Switching to a 210x50 shock should address BB height and bottom out issues. Just need to find a cheap shock to try it.



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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by eicca View Post
    A 140mm 29er fork has the same axle-to-crown length as a 160mm 27.5 fork so it would keep the head angle the same.
    There is some misconception here... I think most of us that ran the Balance in both 160 and 170 front modes far prefer the 170 (Lyrik was JUST being released after CBros released the '16 Balance so they had initially spec'd the lame 160mm Pike on it at first because that was all that was available). Trying to keep the "same HTA as the original" is cutting yourself short. I would run AT LEAST a 150mm 29'r fork. Considering that myself as my new SB130 RIPS (couldn't wait for the new Riot) and would love to bring my Balance "up-to-speed" so to speak! Keep the rear wheel the same (27.5") so as to not raise the BB height too much - reverse mullet is the new gig. I'll eventually try swapping my fork over from the SB130 to see how she goes!

    Have FUN!

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  9. #9
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    reviving this, did anyone ever do it and how did you like it?
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  10. #10
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    I never did try it, but the release of the Norco Optic has me thinking about it again. Since the Optic is a 140-front 125-rear 29er bike with a 65-degree head angle, the Balance could be converted to the same fairly easily I think. A shock with the right measurements would prevent bottom-out and also keep the bottom bracket from getting too high, as visus mentioned above.

    The one major difference, though, is the Optic has a much longer wheelbase. It's quite a large bike. The Balance is quite short in comparison.

    I'm still quite tempted to give it a try.
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  11. #11
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    Well I tried a shorter shock and it sadly doesn't look like this will work. There just isn't enough room to keep the tire from bottoming if you want a tire bigger than a cyclocross tire. The shorter shock also throws the head and seat tube out of whack.

    I'll just have to save for a Revel Rail if I really want 29s on a CBF platform.
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  12. #12
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    Thanks for trying, saw a few balances for sale on PB for a good price and remembered this thread.
    Ripley LS v3
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  13. #13
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    I’m still not quite sure I can give this idea up without trying a 210x50 shock. With that shock the bottom bracket would actually be 3-4mm lower than the Rocky Mountain Instinct BC Edition.

    I should’ve mentioned earlier: The shock I tried was a 200x55. It sure looked like even a 210x50 wouldn’t clear, but the tinker itch in me won’t rest until I actually give it a whirl.
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  14. #14
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    CONFIRMED: 210x50 shock won't work either. A 29x2.5 rear tire will still have 5mm of travel to go when it hits the seat tube.

    Darn. Maybe the rear triangle and links from the new One.2 would bolt on to a Balance frame.

    Or maybe we just wait for Canfield to release a 150mm CBF 29er. I'd sell what's left of my soul for that.
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