Help me pick a 29er SS- Mtbr.com
Results 1 to 22 of 22
  1. #1
    Fragile - must be Italian
    Reputation: dgangi's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    2,308

    Help me pick a 29er SS

    My current SS is a converted geared bike -- 1997 Trek 8000 hardtail with the Rennen chain tensioner (which is a fabulous device BTW). The bike rides very hard -- stiff as a beer can -- and the geometry is a little too low-slung for standing comfortably on climbs. My back and my ass hurt on long rides. Needless to say, I am not having much fun on the bike any more.

    So....I've decided to get a non-AL 29'er SS replacement (steel or ti). I also want a frame that accommodates disc brakes with little fuss, such as an EBB. I've been looking at the following:

    Salsa El Mariachi (would probably buy the frame and build it up)
    Niner SIR 9
    Vassago Optimus Ti (stretch for the budget but cool looking bike)

    Here's my stats: 5'7", 150lbs, 31" inseam (longer legs/short torso and short arms), strong/experienced rider

    I'm a little leery of how well a small frame will handle 29" wheels. Is this a concern?

    Any recommendations between these 3? Or are there other bikes I should be looking at?


    I'd like to keep the total project at $2500 or less.

    Thx...Doug

  2. #2
    Expert Crasher
    Reputation: GreenLightGo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    6,349
    I'd check the other offerings from Vassago as well, they have some good standover. $2500 is plenty for a solid steel SS.

    One thing I might suggest - go for a Zion 737EBB or Vassago (both frames are less than $450, the Zion is $145) and max out the components. If you like it, you can upgrade the frame only. Jumping off into a Ti frame not knowing if you'll like the handling is a big gamble?
    Happiness depends more on the inward disposition of mind than on outward circumstances. Benjamin Franklin

  3. #3
    Fragile - must be Italian
    Reputation: dgangi's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    2,308
    Quote Originally Posted by GreenLightGo
    I'd check the other offerings from Vassago as well, they have some good standover. $2500 is plenty for a solid steel SS.

    One thing I might suggest - go for a Zion 737EBB or Vassago (both frames are less than $450, the Zion is $145) and max out the components. If you like it, you can upgrade the frame only. Jumping off into a Ti frame not knowing if you'll like the handling is a big gamble?
    I looked at the Zion and was reluctant to buy it because I never heard of the brand and it seemed like a really cheap frame. From what I know about steel frames...don't you get what you pay for? I want a relatively light bike, not a tank. I was hoping to get something with Reynolds or some other name-brand tubing.

    As far as the Vassago Jabberwocky goes, I decided against that one because of its rear dropouts. It doesn't have an EBB and looks like the horizontal dropouts aren't a "set and forget" arrangement with respect to disc brakes, which the cool dropouts on their Ti model have. Am I wrong here?

    Thx...Doug

  4. #4
    Welcome to the Gem...
    Reputation: Mallanaga's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    811
    they're as close to set and forget as i need. you can take the wheel off w/o messing with the brakes, and i've moved the wheel all over the track, and haven't touched my brakes.

    /shrug. not a big deal. it's a really nice frame.
    Ibis Tranny 29


  5. #5
    stick
    Reputation: dashSC's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Posts
    182
    I have a Vassago as well, I love it so far. First SS [as well as first rigid, first steel, first 29er, first bike with discs, etc, so my comparison is limited]. It's quite fun though. I spent maybe $900 total on mine, so you can do it for quite a bit less than $2500 if you want.

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Posts
    91
    I second the set and forget dropouts. I run Avid BB7 discs and haven't touched the brakes since I bought it. QR wheel removal has never been a problem. Couldn't be happier with my Jabber's weight or handling either. Go with the Jabber!

    - Of course if you can manage the Titanium...
    --"In the summer we wore meat helmets..."

  7. #7
    Fragile - must be Italian
    Reputation: dgangi's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    2,308
    Quote Originally Posted by lemonpedals23
    I second the set and forget dropouts. I run Avid BB7 discs and haven't touched the brakes since I bought it. QR wheel removal has never been a problem. Couldn't be happier with my Jabber's weight or handling either. Go with the Jabber!

    - Of course if you can manage the Titanium...
    So how exactly do the dropouts on the Jabberwocky work w/disc brakes (esp. hydraulics)? Do you have to fidget with anything to change a tire? What about if you change out the rear cog and have to slide the tire back/forward to get the proper tension...do you have to adjust the rotor too?

    I've been thinking of doing this on the cheap...but after seeing lots and lots of photos of the ti frame...I'm really leaning that direction.

    On another note -- how do you all like the Vassago geometry? Their website tries to explain how the Vassago way is better than others...but then so does everybody else.

    Thx...Doug

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation: XCARTELX's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    48
    Taking your height into account, I'd go with a 650b from Sycip Designs
    [up]

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation: BassBikerD's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    82
    The Raleigh XXIX (29'er) is a good choice too. It comes in as the cheapest one at around 750. But they don't skimp on the good components. It has an EBB along with Avid BB5's and steel fork/frame. Truvativ crank, and WTB speed disc all mtn rims. It really is a good deal for the price. I would look into a medium frame for their 29'er...just my 2 cents! hope it helps! I'm a biased Raleigh person though. I think I'm on my third one....

    http://www.raleighusa.com/bikes/mountain/xxix/

  10. #10
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Posts
    505
    How much money do you got? if you have a endless bank roll buy a retrotec. if not get a stumpy or Niner one 9. I got a new niner for sale if your interested.

  11. #11
    Welcome to the Gem...
    Reputation: Mallanaga's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    811
    the vassago geometry is super comfortable.

    it's magical...
    Ibis Tranny 29


  12. #12
    mtbr member
    Reputation: BassBikerD's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    82
    magically delicious?

  13. #13
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Posts
    532
    With a budget like that, I'd spend 850 on a Haro Mary, then upgrade to a carbon fork and AC wheels and a different tire combo.

    I have mine set up with Bontrager SB fork, Salsa Carbon bars, XT cranks and a WTB WW/Nano tire combo. If I had 600 bucks to spend on the wheels, I could get it into the 22lb range.

  14. #14
    CB2
    CB2 is offline
    Jam Econo
    Reputation: CB2's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    4,214
    The Salsa El Mariachi complete is $1600, and there's not much I'd change about it.

  15. #15
    Fragile - must be Italian
    Reputation: dgangi's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    2,308
    Quote Originally Posted by CB2
    The Salsa El Mariachi complete is $1600, and there's not much I'd change about it.
    Isn't that for a 1x9 setup? Can you get a SS built bike?

    That bike also comes w/Avid mechanicals, which I would want to swap out.

    Thx...Doug

  16. #16
    CB2
    CB2 is offline
    Jam Econo
    Reputation: CB2's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    4,214
    Quote Originally Posted by dgangi
    Isn't that for a 1x9 setup? Can you get a SS built bike?

    That bike also comes w/Avid mechanicals, which I would want to swap out.

    Thx...Doug
    It has an ebb so you can run it single or geared. I guess you'd have to buy a spacer kit, or you could buy a kick ass ss specific rear wheel, and some super fancy brakes with the $900 you have left in your budget.

  17. #17
    mtbr member
    Reputation: MMcG's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Posts
    9,591
    You should contact Davis Carver at Carver Bikes and inquire about one of their Titanium frames that you could get in any of the following configurations:

    1. 29er
    2. Dual 650b
    3. 69er
    4. 650b/29er

    A grand for the frame and then you could work with Davis on a build kit that would be within your budget. I betcha Davis will be a great guy to deal with as well. He's good peeps!

  18. #18
    808+909 = Party Good Time
    Reputation: chumbox's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Posts
    2,070
    Salsa...

  19. #19
    Now wr rollin on a Boom!
    Reputation: archtop44's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    282

    Another one

    ...to check out is the voodoo dambala. It's another low-cost frame that you can throw swanky parts at.

    I loved mine, and I miss them sliding dropouts. Never heard a peep out of 'em, and the frame was sweet--- I'm about 165lbs, and thought it was nice and comfy.

    It might also be a choice if you prefer a quicker handling frame, and not so much if you like 'em super stable.

    All that said, though, that Optimus ti is going to be so cool when you get it! My friend loves his Jabber, and so does everyone else hereabouts, it seems.

    Make triple sure it fits, though --that's why I had to sell the Voodoo I liked so much, and the ti will lose even more $ on resale.
    "I think it's cool how the best line is also usually the most beautiful line" --Kurt F, Tamarancho, Safety Meeting

  20. #20
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    4,667
    Monocog Flight would be another feasible frame.

  21. #21
    Fragile - must be Italian
    Reputation: dgangi's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    2,308
    Quote Originally Posted by MMcG
    You should contact Davis Carver at Carver Bikes and inquire about one of their Titanium frames that you could get in any of the following configurations:

    1. 29er
    2. Dual 650b
    3. 69er
    4. 650b/29er

    A grand for the frame and then you could work with Davis on a build kit that would be within your budget. I betcha Davis will be a great guy to deal with as well. He's good peeps!
    Awesome tip - I'll contact Davis tomorrow. I'm not a 69er fan and I noticed on his website that the ti frame as a 29er option (99er as he labels it).

    And I'm also still considering the Vassago Optimus Ti or maybe even the Jabberwocky if I want to save some money. After doing a little homework, I am really starting to believe in the "wet cat" theory of 29er geometry...and based on opinons all over this board...lots of people like it too.

    Thx...Doug

  22. #22
    Shocks?, Pegs?... Lucky!
    Reputation: fritzaholic's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    799
    Look at the Kona Unit 2-9. It has Paragon like sliding drop, so no fuddles with the rear disk/ wheel swap thing. Also, has a Derailleur hanger, so if want gears on it at some point, you're not stuck.
    Also, fits your price range of 2,500.

    I use one as an SS and really dig it. I have a Seven too, but that's a 26", and it's seeing less trail time lately.

Members who have read this thread: 0

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

THE SITE

ABOUT MTBR

VISIT US AT

© Copyright 2019 VerticalScope Inc. All rights reserved.