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  1. #1
    I like endos
    Reputation: ParkerFly's Avatar
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    chameleon geometry alteration question

    Hey, thinking of getting a Lg. Chameleon frame, building it up normally (ss) except with a 29" front wheel/fork (Marzocchi MX Comp 29). This frame is designed to accept fork of up to 140mm travel (a long ass fork) with a 26" wheel. The Marzocchi 29er is only a 75mm travel, so even with the extra height (length) of the 29er wheel I think it would still fit the geo. just fine with the additions of a 410mm Thompson post and a reversed (upside down to level bars w/ seat) 120mm stem. I think this because if you ass 75 to the 3 extra inches of wheel, you get 145mm. Anybody else have thoughts on this? Think it would work? I really like the idea of 26 rear 29 front. Anyway, still in the planning phase so any thoughts would be great I just think in theory it would make a really great trail ss bike.
    As for the Pyramids, there is nothing to wonder at in them so much as the fact that so many men could be found degraded enough to spend their lives constructing a tomb for some ambitious booby, whom it would have been wiser and manlier to have drowned in the Nile, and then given his body to the dogs. - Henry David Thoreau

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation: FrontRanger's Avatar
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    A couple of thoughts. The chameleon is actually set to take up to a 153mm fork(6 inches). And isn't a 29er wheel only 1.5 inches larger from hub to rim? The other half of the 3 extra inches is sitting in the arch of the fork so isn't really counted.

  3. #3
    The man who fell to earth
    Reputation: Ziggy-Stardust's Avatar
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    I've got a Chammy too, and it's just a matter of time before I try this conversion. The bike is virtually custom made for this type of transformation, there is tons of space and travel for a 26 inch setup, so a 29'er with a 4 inch fork shouldn't be a problem at all. I haven't taken measurements yet on a 29'er wheel + fork, but I'm really comfortable it'll work out fine. I plan on getting a Reba 29 fork and going from there. Let us know when you do yours, would love to see it.

  4. #4
    King Pin
    Reputation: xrmattaz's Avatar
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    Good job! Lizard

    I have an XL Chameleon, and have considered doing the 96'er to her. I'll probably opt to do it to the Sofa King first....IF I can somehow get over my dislike of disc brakes.

    The Lizard would gladly accept the bigger wheel! With room to spare.

  5. #5
    Recovering couch patato
    Reputation: Cloxxki's Avatar
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    The 29" forks adds ~31mm, and so doesn teh 29" wheel itself. So with a ~80mm 29" fork, you'd end up with similar geometry to a 140mm 26" setup. DO take into account that the larger diameter of the 29" wheel slightly lengthens fork trail, and thus slows steering. You'll have the ride height of a 140mm form (pre-sag), and the handling of a 150+mm. As a short-travel fork sags less, it will be quite tall indeed.
    Way cool if you get it to work, though. I would have put a 29" fork in my Banshee Morpine for long, if my fork's steerer weren't cut so short. I wonder how 29/26 would handle on the 4X track, would I be able to corner faster? Still, the very shortest of 29" forks is about as tall as the longest singlecrown 26" fork, so geometry changes are huge. My Morphine is now on a 100mm Black SPV.

  6. #6
    I like endos
    Reputation: ParkerFly's Avatar
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    another chameleon ss question...

    Since the Chameleon has sliding horizontal dropouts, does it work well with discs in the back? I have heard of people having problems with discs on horizontal drops because of the play needed to tension the chain. I'm planning to run avid mech 185mm's. Also, anyone running 32/18 gearing on one? Does it tension well with discs? Thanks, just trying to get all my info down before I start slapping down tons of cash for this stuff. Furthermore, anyone using skewers on horizontal drops? Does it work well? Planning Salsa Ti skewers fyi.
    As for the Pyramids, there is nothing to wonder at in them so much as the fact that so many men could be found degraded enough to spend their lives constructing a tomb for some ambitious booby, whom it would have been wiser and manlier to have drowned in the Nile, and then given his body to the dogs. - Henry David Thoreau

  7. #7
    The man who fell to earth
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    Since the Chameleon has sliding horizontal dropouts, does it work well with discs in the back?

    So far so good, I haven't had any problems getting the wheel in and out at all. Plus the braking function/caliper alignment seems just fine. But the Chameleon caliper mount does not have slotted holes like some bikes have (a DISS for example). Slotted caliper mounts provide more adjustability than unslotted, which might lead to an inability to precisely adjust the caliper so that the pads make full contact with the disc irregardless of where the wheel is positioned on the horizontal dropouts. In other words if the wheel is adjusted to the extremes of all the way forward or all the way backward, the pads may have trouble making full contact with the disk.

    Does it tension well with discs?

    It tensions just fine.

    Furthermore, anyone using skewers on horizontal drops? Does it work well?

    I use skewers and a single Surly tuggnut on the drive side only. So far it seems to be working ok, but I'm still evaluating this setup. When you first look at it it doesn't appear as if it would prevent the wheel from slipping around (on the non drive side). But after many rides, if it is slipping, it's a very small amount. The reason I'm not sure if this setup's working yet is because if I properly tension my chain just before a ride, and then complete the ride, the chain can be quite slack sometimes (and this is with a fully broken in chain). I know the drive side is not slipping (the tuggnut won't allow that), and upon inspection the non-drive side seems ok, but it may have imperceptibly slipped....or I'm just stretching the living hell out of my chain because I'm running 34:14 right now, making for some very strained ascents on the steeper stuff.

    Anyway, still checking this system out, I might have to add another tensioner on the non drive side, or just bite the bullet and put a solid axle with nuts on it if I determine it is slipping. But for now I can say it at least works reasonably well.

    Good luck

  8. #8
    I like endos
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    checked geo

    Hey everybody who's watching this board and has a chameleon. I just checked the geometries of the lg. Santa Cruz chameleon with a 6in. travel fork to the geometries of the Gary Fisher Rig med. size with an 80mm travel fork and 29er wheels. The angles, except the headtube, are almost identical, and the effective top tube length is the same. The headtube angle is more extreme on the chameleon but even with that difference the wheelbase of the chameleon is still almost 2in. shorter (can you say sharp handling?). This leads me to believe that a 29in. front wheel on a chameleon with a 75mm fork would handle at least as well as the rig. The rider will have to offset the extreme headtube angle and relatively short top tube length with a long, negative degree stem and a long seatpost (the seatpost angle will also be pretty extreme on the chameleon, which will help even out the cockpit length with the slightly shorter toptube). The long seatpost should be okay too since the chameleon requires a 30.9 diameter, which is quite strong. With this info, I think I"m gonna go for it. My lbs mechanic is gonna piss nails (he's kinda fundamentalist, but a good guy nonetheless) but tough crap for him when I waste him in the next local ss race.
    As for the Pyramids, there is nothing to wonder at in them so much as the fact that so many men could be found degraded enough to spend their lives constructing a tomb for some ambitious booby, whom it would have been wiser and manlier to have drowned in the Nile, and then given his body to the dogs. - Henry David Thoreau

  9. #9
    I like endos
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    Furthermore...

    upon more research, I discovered that the mx comp 29, sag corrected, including the height added by a 29 inch wheel (extra 30mm), will give me an equivalent length ground to crown of a 26 inch setup with a 135mm. fork. Just more facts to back up what you guys already said- it will work fine. So here's the parts kit I'm planning on. Comment on what you think is great and what might not work so well. Thanks for all the advice, this probably won't be built until next spring completely ($$$) but I'll post pics of the progress as I get more and more done. Again, any advice on components would be great.

    Lg. Gun Metal Chameleon Frame
    '04 Marzocchi MX Comp 29 (black)
    Bontrager 29" front wheel (from local Fisher dealer)
    Bontrager 26" rear wheel (from an old bike) with adaptor and 18t cog
    Avid BB7 mechanicals with 185mm rotors and SD5 levers
    WTB Greaseguard Headset
    Easton EA50 xc flat bar (23in.), 120mm ea50 stem
    Thompson 350mm post
    WTB Rocket V ti saddle
    Salsa Ti Skewers (red)
    Cork bar tape
    Shimano LX hollowtech II 175mm cranks (from old bike)
    Ritchey v3 pedals (I love these)
    Hutchinson Spider 2.3 rear tire, Kenda Klaw 29er 2.2 front tire

    It will be grey with all black parts and red skewers. That's it, hope you guys can help more.
    As for the Pyramids, there is nothing to wonder at in them so much as the fact that so many men could be found degraded enough to spend their lives constructing a tomb for some ambitious booby, whom it would have been wiser and manlier to have drowned in the Nile, and then given his body to the dogs. - Henry David Thoreau

  10. #10
    Really I am that slow
    Reputation: SlowerThenSnot's Avatar
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    Go rigid

    Throw a surly insagator fork 100m fork then a disk 29er wheel sould be a bit closer.

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