26" SS to 29er Help- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    26" SS to 29er Help

    I'm sure this discussion has been covered before, but I haven't found anything. Anyway, I currently ride a 26" Soul Cycles Hooligan SS and I'm starting to look around at 29ers. I've never ridden a 29er, but my friends swear by them. Looking for some opinions on whether or not I should pull the trigger or just be happy with a 26".

  2. #2
    surly inbred
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    Subscribed.

    Only because this thread might have a chance since it was posted outside the big wheel forum & I've been having another sniff of wagon wheels lately with my newfound love of manly rigidness. Or rigid manlyness.

  3. #3
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    For the love of everything good and decent please don't do it! ( If your friends jumped off a bridge, would you?)

  4. #4
    openwound
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    I have one and like it. I currently have a singular swift. I'm 6ft. even and I like the fit of the bike. I like the way it handles, too. Though the wheelbase is longer, I have yet to experience a situation where it's been an issue.

    For a bit of balance, I also have a Bianchi SASS. I ran it with 26" wheels but currently have it set up with 650b's. I like it better with the 650's than I did with 26's.

    Will your hooligan fit 650b's? Uh oh, did I just totally derail the conversation..?
    -- let's ride

  5. #5
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    I love mine, but it's not worth doing just because other people said so. If you've tried one and decided you liked it, then by all means go for it. Or maybe if you just love to experiment and try new things.

  6. #6
    ilmfat
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    seems like you could post in the colorado forum and see if anyone has one theyd let you demo on a "real" ride.

    i say we need to organize a network of local "reps" that are willing to let people demo different stuff. i.e., alt bars, 29ers, fat bikes, even saddles and tires maybe.

    just sayin.
    crap! i gotta learn to climb. - 2011

    Climbing ain't so bad. - 2019

  7. #7
    ilmfat
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    oh, and i love 29.
    crap! i gotta learn to climb. - 2011

    Climbing ain't so bad. - 2019

  8. #8
    Two Headed Boy
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    Once I tried a 29er there was no going back to smaller wheels, so be warned!

    When I first when over the edge and dove into a 29er it was a hardtail GF Paragon with some squish in the front, and man I couldn't believe how well it handled, and rolled, and rolled, and rolled some more! The trials were I ride are quite technical and filled with roots, rocks, and trees, and I found the the 29 inch wheels only helped and didn't detract at all! Got made fun of for a bit, but the 29er bug has hit around here and now the LBS cant get enough 29ers in this season. Now since the GF was stolen, I bought a Dawes Bullseye, as I was on a budget, and have really been digging the rigid SS 29er thing alot.

    Anyhow you should hit up one of your 29er proclaiming friends and give their bike a spin and see how ya like it.
    tSETFREEBYLOVEt

  9. #9
    Two Headed Boy
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    Oh and I'm 6'1" 175 pounds, so a 29er just feels right being taller
    tSETFREEBYLOVEt

  10. #10
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    Do it. Bigger is better. It's the American way. You ARE a patriot, aren't you?

    That said, if your Hooligan is the small, green version, let me know. Need to swap frames on my wife's bike.

  11. #11
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    Thank you all for the responses... So I'm a lemmings if I do and unamerican if I don't - ha. Everyone out here I ride with are taller then me (5'7"), so I haven't been able to test a true fitting 29er. I've always told the taller folks that (me) riding a 26" is like them riding their 29ers. Anyway, I have no complaints with my current setup, but I'll report back when I have a chance to ride one.

    p nut, mine is a medium white Hooligan, sorry I couldn't help you out.

  12. #12
    Out spokin'
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trower
    Oh and I'm 6'1" 175 pounds, so a 29er just feels right being taller
    ^^^ this. I'm 6'3" and will never buy another kiddie-wheeled bike, but my 29ers look like 26ers in photos unless there's another bike to show scale. Do 26ers fit short people better? Hell, I dunno.

    --sParty
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    We get old because we quit riding.

  13. #13
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    Just pick one up on craigslist or eBay for $2-400. If it doesn't work out, just sell it. You'll maybe lose a little bit, but it will be worth it, IMO. It may take a few rides to "click", or not...click, so give yourself a few rides before making the final decision.

    Also, plenty of shorter people ride and race 29ers (look at the XC race forum), so don't let your height determine your decision.
    Last edited by p nut; 05-15-2011 at 09:02 PM.

  14. #14
    Ovaries on the Outside
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    I really like 26" and I really don't think that the 26" rubber is much worse rigid. After all, it is a ****ing rigid bike. If you want a smoother ride, there is a reason why Jesus invented suspension on the eighth day, after spending some of the previous seven days making glorious singletrack.

    You hooligan will accept 650b. Of course, I'm assuming that you have a more recent vintage bike when I say that. That is the tire size I'd run if it wasn't a pain in the ass to get it to work with a cheap production frame.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sparticus
    ^^^ this. I'm 6'3" and will never buy another kiddie-wheeled bike, but my 29ers look like 26ers in photos unless there's another bike to show scale. Do 26ers fit short people better? Hell, I dunno.

    --sParty
    I'm not as tall as sParty, but I weigh more. I prefer 26" on singletrack. I still think that there is a height aspect to 29ers because of the way the bike needs to be built to accommodate those wheels, but it is overplayed. You like a certain wheel size or you don't.

    Sparty is way better than me on singletrack, but he is regardless of wheelsize.

  15. #15
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    MHO? Check my sig
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  16. #16
    surly inbred
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    Quote Originally Posted by umarth
    You hooligan will accept 650b. Of course, I'm assuming that you have a more recent vintage bike when I say that. That is the tire size I'd run if it wasn't a pain in the ass to get it to work with a cheap production frame.
    Let's elaborate. I get that you're not a huge fan of 29, yet willing to plug 650b... why?

    (I'm not poking sticks, I'm actually curious.)

  17. #17
    ilmfat
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    didnt i pick up somewhere that u own a 29er, umarth?

    maybe im mistaken.
    crap! i gotta learn to climb. - 2011

    Climbing ain't so bad. - 2019

  18. #18
    MMS
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    I recently converted a 94 Diamondback Apex to SS. Love it. Lurking around here looking at the bike porn, I got the itch to try a 29. Went to the LBS, took a Monocog 29 for a neighborhood test roll. I'm 5'9" and normally ride a 18" frame, that's what I took out. I wasn't a fan. Felt "clumsy" at low speed, and just too tall. I tried the smaller frame too, couldn't get into it either. Maybe it was a matter of fit, I dunno..I like my 26 just fine, and will replace as such.

  19. #19
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    ^^I did the same thing about a year ago when I was shopping for a SS. I ended up with the 26er that is now boxed up in the back of my car to be shipped out. I ended up getting out on a friends on the trails and really liked the 29er. I am 5'9" (5' 8.5" actually) and am riding a Med frame which I would guess is right about an 17-18". I really do enjoy it though it took some getting used to. The wheel base is longer so that made getting the front wheel and the whole bike in general a little harder to get off the ground but I'm rolling now and quite happy.

    I guess there really wasn't much turning around for me either once I converted over. I pretty much took all my good parts that I had accumulated and built up the 29er. The old GT was spec'd with some stock and left over parts and it just didn't fit me. I would have had to spend alot more money to get it back to where I was happy with it and it just wasn't worth it to me. Better to have the $$ and pay off some debt than a bike hanging in the garage not getting ridden.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by MMS
    I recently converted a 94 Diamondback Apex to SS. Love it. Lurking around here looking at the bike porn, I got the itch to try a 29. Went to the LBS, took a Monocog 29 for a neighborhood test roll. I'm 5'9" and normally ride a 18" frame, that's what I took out. I wasn't a fan. Felt "clumsy" at low speed, and just too tall. I tried the smaller frame too, couldn't get into it either. Maybe it was a matter of fit, I dunno..I like my 26 just fine, and will replace as such.
    Felt similar after one ride; now a dedicated 29er rider.

    It's different, just like going from a road bike to a mountain bike or anything else, one might not "get it" on the first outing.

    Run whatever you like. Just sayin'.

    --sParty
    disciplesofdirt.org

    We don't quit riding because we get old.
    We get old because we quit riding.

  21. #21
    MMS
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    I'm not opposed to trying again, and would really rather try a 29 on the trail...but beggars can't be choosers I guess. Not closing my mind to the idea, but at this point I'm fine.

    Best scenario would be talking the wife into the bike fleet...

  22. #22
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    MMS - Parking lot test rides are about as good as internet fit calculators. Try to get a demo out on the trails and give her a good floggin.

    Also, Monocogs never came in 18". Only 15" (S),17" (M), 19" (L) and 21" (XL).

  23. #23
    MMS
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    You're right. It was the 17 first, then the 15. Not a parking lot ride, neighborhood ride. Mostly street, but some unpaved alleys as well. And I agree, I wanna take one out on the trail for sure.

  24. #24
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    I prefer 26ers, but i can see the pluses of a 29er. I had one, and it did nothing for me as far as helping my ride. At best, it helped on bumpy flat or false flat trails where it's hard to keep momentum. As for singletrack, it slowed me down. Same with climbing.
    Rocky downhills can sway to the 29er's favor in most cases, but my Ibis Tranny seems to smooth out the trail as much if not more than my 29er did, both with the same Fox fork and tires.

  25. #25
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    I didn't own a 29er two years ago, today I proudly own three. I'd love to say that 29ers are the best thing to happen to the industry and those who don't ride one are missing out, but really it comes down to fit, riding style and terrain. Would I ever own a 26" again? Well, never say never, but it doesn't seem likely.
    If you want all the comforts of home, stay there.

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  26. #26
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    Great comments in regards to 26". It's only my second year on a SS and it's been a hoot to ride. Needless to say, my Turner 5 Spot hasn't seen much trail time since I started riding one gear. I'm going to keep my eyes open for any demo's in the area to try a big wheel, but until then I'll keep learning how to ride my 26" better/faster.

    Cheers

  27. #27
    singletrack bound
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    went from FS S.C. Superlight to a

    Santa Cruz Chameleon SS,
    rode that for five years and loved it!

    went to a steel frame 29er H.T. SS and have been on it for going on three years and I basically haven't been on a 26" wheeled bike since.

  28. #28
    All 26.5" all the time!
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    You won't know for sure until you spend some time on one.

    I've got both 26" and 29" SS bikes.

    Still prefer the 26" 90% of the time.

  29. #29
    Ovaries on the Outside
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    Quote Originally Posted by ilmfat
    didnt i pick up somewhere that u own a 29er, umarth?

    maybe im mistaken.
    You are on the money. It is a retard 29er, as I picked it up to run spot duty on singletrack, but mainly to run beefy cross tires for my weekly road rides that mix singletrack. I like the cross offerings more than the 26" tire options for mud/pavement/speed.

    For the record, I don't hate 29ers, and for a long stretch a rigid KM was my only bike. I prefer 26" wheels because they fit me better. I mostly comment for my own entertainment and general worry that people are feeling compelled to buy another bike because people like bandwagons.

    Quote Originally Posted by TroutBum
    Let's elaborate. I get that you're not a huge fan of 29, yet willing to plug 650b... why?

    (I'm not poking sticks, I'm actually curious.)
    I don't like the fact that I have to work to get a 29er to handle the way I want, or that they get clumsy or that 29ers put the hurt on you whenever you try a burst of power, but I do appreciate that a series of roots don't slow it down as much as a 26' bike, and I appreciate the momentum from the big wheels.

    650b really does well in both fields. I have a pair of wheels and I didn't notice a huge difference in handling from the 26" wheels and rollover and momentum almost felt like a 29er set up. I don't want to blindly endorse the wheelsize. Putting 650bs on your 26" bike will mess up the geometry slightly. I find it mildly annoying to have my MCF have slower handling. That and the chainstays barely fits 2.1 rubber. The worst thing is I have a huge need for a winter mud tire and 650b doesn't have a good option.

    However, if you have a bike optimized for 650b handling and the conditions to make the tire selection work, it has to be the best wheelsize. My girlfriend is riding the wheelset now. She doesn't love the slightly slower steering, but the bike (in her opinion) is more stable downhill and gives more confidence in tech. She doesn't like 29ers, but she hasn't been on a small enough frame yet.

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