monocog: 26 or 29?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    monocog: 26 or 29?

    I plan to buy a Monocog for my trail and commuting needs soon. I think the 26er and the 29er are about the same price and so far as I can tell, the only difference is that one is bigger than the other. I come from a bmx background, so a steel rigid SS is prefect for me. I have a nice converted SS bike now, but I want something with the ability to upgrade to disc brakes, sliding dropout slots, and a non-freewheel hub. So I have a few questions:

    1. 26 or 29? Any good lists of comparisons? I am reading the FAQ thread now, anything to add to that?
    (a)Tire availability might be an issue. what kind of slick, road-ish tire can I put on a 29er for commuting?
    (b)I like the idea of a 26er because I suspect it's easier to throw around and climb. I like to flow more than bounce over technical stuff. What is the handling like on a 26 vs. 29?

    2. gear ratios? the Redline site says the 26er comes with a 32/20 ratio, but that sounds incredibly low.
    (a)does the 26er really come with that large a cog? if so, what kind of cogs can go on the hubs that come with the monocog? It's easier and probably cheaper to swap cogs than chainrings, so I need choices that allow me to keep a 32t up front.
    (b)i like 32/18 on a 26er for trails, but what's a faster ratio for commuting on roads?
    (c) What is the equivalent ratio on a 29er to a 32/18 on a 29er? What's a good road commuting ratio for a 29er?

    3. Frame sizes. I am about 5'9" with a 32" inseam. I ride a 16" frame on 26" wheels at the moment. What is Redline's equivalent on their 26" Monocog? On a 29"?
    Last edited by mack_turtle; 11-26-2009 at 10:38 AM.

  2. #2
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    The 26 inch flight was discontinued last year.. so your options are 29. My wife is 5.5 and the 15 fits her well. Gearing is a personal choice, limited by your fitness level. A 32/20 is a good choice for most, just starting out. I would think the 17 or 16 in 29er would suit you fine. I am referring to the Flight models.. the frames have different grades of steel, and a slight difference in geo, iirc.
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  3. #3
    SSolo, on your left!
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    SS....29er is the way. My Haro Mary SS feels just like a big bmx bike to me....loving Mary! Gear depends on terrain and fitness, I like 32x20 (same as 32x18 in 26" wheels) for my terrain on 29er. Tires are not a problem these days....just look round there are new treads and sizes coming out all the time for 29er. Most any cog for a freehub will fit...stocker should be fine for now, but commuting prolly go up.
    Get off the couch and ride!

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by mo0se
    The 26 inch flight was discontinued last year.. so your options are 29. My wife is 5.5 and the 15 fits her well. Gearing is a personal choice, limited by your fitness level. A 32/20 is a good choice for most, just starting out. I would think the 17 or 16 in 29er would suit you fine. I am referring to the Flight models.. the frames have different grades of steel, and a slight difference in geo, iirc.
    He never mentioned the flight, and Redline is back to advertising both the 29" and 26" versions of the regular Monocog.

    I personally found 29" wheels to compliment SSing better than 26" wheels, but that is based on my riding style on my trails. I would certainly enjoy a 26" SS too. As for the rigid part though, I would definitely choose the 29er... the larger wheels really do roll over stuff easier and smooth out the trail a bit

    As for the tires, 29ers are the same rim size as road bikes. Any 700c road tire wider than your rim width will work, so the options are huge. As for off-road tires the selection is very large now too.

    32x20 on a 29er is equivalent to 32x18 on a 26er

    On the first couple rides the 29er can feel too big and awkward for some people, but that feeling often passes quickly. I throw my 29er around a lot too. I'm not saying I couldn't throw the 26er around easier, but I have adjusted and can do it quite easily on my 29er now.

  5. #5
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    if you go SS you gotta go 29er!

  6. #6
    bhc
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    I have ridden both. I own the 26" Monocog. I also own a 29" Haro SS. So it isn't a matter of 29 versus 26 to me. The Monocog has a quick feel to it. I like it. The 29er isn't as quick, IMO. So it depends on what you are after.

    But I would advise you try both out, see what fits better.

    Or buy both

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by boomn
    He never mentioned the flight, and Redline is back to advertising both the 29" and 26" versions of the regular Monocog.

    I personally found 29" wheels to compliment SSing better than 26" wheels, but that is based on my riding style on my trails. I would certainly enjoy a 26" SS too. As for the rigid part though, I would definitely choose the 29er... the larger wheels really do roll over stuff easier and smooth out the trail a bit

    As for the tires, 29ers are the same rim size as road bikes. Any 700c road tire wider than your rim width will work, so the options are huge. As for off-road tires the selection is very large now too.

    32x20 on a 29er is equivalent to 32x18 on a 26er

    On the first couple rides the 29er can feel too big and awkward for some people, but that feeling often passes quickly. I throw my 29er around a lot too. I'm not saying I couldn't throw the 26er around easier, but I have adjusted and can do it quite easily on my 29er now.




    the flight is the only one with the sliding dropouts, which he did mention.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by veinspumpPabst
    the flight is the only one with the sliding dropouts, which he did mention.
    when i say "sliding" dropouts i meant horizontal dropouts of some sort. right now i have a regular mtb frame with a tensioner and it's a pain. i also can't put discs on my current frame or wheels, so I am just going to buy a whole new bike.

    Redline is making three SS bikes right now: the 26 and 29 Monocogs and the 29" Flite. the regular Monocogs have chromoly frames and rim brakes while the flite has a nicer Sanko chromoly frame and discs, along with those fancy Paragon dropouts. I think that if i choose to get a 29 over a 26, i am just going to spend the extra money and get the Flite instead of the regular monocog and save myself the trouble of upgrading to disc brakes later on.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by mack_turtle
    when i say "sliding" dropouts i meant horizontal dropouts of some sort. right now i have a regular mtb frame with a tensioner and it's a pain. i also can't put discs on my current frame or wheels, so I am just going to buy a whole new bike.

    Redline is making three SS bikes right now: the 26 and 29 Monocogs and the 29" Flite. the regular Monocogs have chromoly frames and rim brakes while the flite has a nicer Sanko chromoly frame and discs, along with those fancy Paragon dropouts. I think that if i choose to get a 29 over a 26, i am just going to spend the extra money and get the Flite instead of the regular monocog and save myself the trouble of upgrading to disc brakes later on.
    Go for the Flight.... it's a great bike for the $ especailly the prodeal.

    The 29er is going to take a change in riding style, you're not on a BMX bike anymore so tossing it around will be different. On the road, on the flats, and @ Mac you're going to fly with the big wheels. Put some 42 cross tires for urban mix, and some big fat tires for epic days @ HCSNA.

    The Monocog has Paragon like drop outs, but they're house brand, so replacing isn't just a question or ordering through PMW, you'll have to deal with Seattle Bike Suply or Redline direct. I hear you can get a drive side drop out with a derail hanger if you ever choose to run gears.

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