Singlespeed newbie looking for help- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Singlespeed newbie looking for help

    This whole singlespeed thing is very new to ne at the moment so please be gentle with me!

    First question is frame choice I am really struggling to decide between 26" and 29". Short list for the frame are Santa Cruz Chameleon or Niner one9 what do you guys reccomend and why?

    Advantage for me in sticking with 26" wheels is I have wheels and forks lying around that could be used.

    Could really use some ideas as to what the best way forward is before I start parting with the money.

  2. #2
    local trails rider
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    Proponents of 29ers will say that 29ers are the best things since man invented bread.... I have not tried them so I can happily ride my 26" SS bike on the same trails where I rode that bike with 27 gears.

  3. #3
    thecentralscrutinizer
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    Economics were the reason I went with a 26" bike. Ended up only having to buy an SS adapter kit and a rock ring.
    I wasn't sure if I was really going to enjoy riding a singlespeed bike again, but so far this year I have more miles on it than any of my other bikes. Mine currently is strictly pavement/fireroads though. I could throw a suspension fork on it and swap the tires for some knobbies if I decide to go that route.
    2015 Kona JTS
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  4. #4
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    Have to admit that I cant really miss what I have never had. I am just thinking that maybe a 29" SS would be 'easier' to ride because of the alleged benefits of the larger wheel.

    I need some input from someone who has SS'd both wheel sizes and can clarify if there are any benefits to either. Taking cost out of the equation I fancy trying a 29'er but just wonder if it is any better.

  5. #5
    Cheezy Rider
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    Tough decision. No matter what anyone tells you, you'll never know if YOU like 29" wheels until you ride them. I test rode a 29er SS for a few miles, I wish I could say that angels sang and my eyes were opened. Didn't happen. But I still want one, maybe I'm just a sucker.

    Unfortunately, my budget won't allow me to buy a new bike, so I'll be converting an old rigid 26er to single speed.

    Not buying wheels and forks will save you a ton of money that you can bank(right!) or use for more blingy goodness. But don't let frugality keep you from getting what you really want. Last time I bought a wheelset, my LBS was running a screamin deal on something a little lower-end than what I wanted. I bought the bargain wheels, but as I was mounting them I asked myself what I would do if in two months someone offered to trade me my bargain wheels and 100 bucks for the wheels I really wanted. And the next day I returned them and got the nice wheels, no regrets.

    I say if you can afford it, go 29 and find out what the hype is all about. But if money's tight, build a nice 26er.

  6. #6
    HTFU and Ride
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    Quote Originally Posted by adyxc
    Have to admit that I cant really miss what I have never had. I am just thinking that maybe a 29" SS would be 'easier' to ride because of the alleged benefits of the larger wheel.

    I need some input from someone who has SS'd both wheel sizes and can clarify if there are any benefits to either. Taking cost out of the equation I fancy trying a 29'er but just wonder if it is any better.
    try and get a demo on both. if you can actually ride a trail you are familiar with you will feel the difference. i rode a 26er singlespeed with an 80mm fork last year. this year i went to a rigid 29er SS. i was worried at first but once i got my voodoo 29er out on the trail i could really feel the positive differences.

    the money is a big deal though! i wish i had lighter wheels and tires but i have to wait to save up some money. i plan on spending as much as i did for the whole bike for a set of paul hubs, velocity blunts, dt spokes and racing ralphs but it will be worth it for a more responsive and lighter ride.

    if you are a taller or bigger rider the 29er will just feel better on the trail.

    long story short, try to get out and ride both.
    Winter is coming.

  7. #7
    Out spokin'
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    I have both 26" & 29" singlespeeds. FWIW I'm 6'3" tall, 36" inseam... I offer this info because everybody seems to think that 29ers are "best" for taller folk, but I have height-challenged riding buds who love 29er, too.

    The big wheels of my On-One Inbred 29er really do seem to be more efficient rollers and they def roll over roots & rocks more easily than kiddie wheels. BUT... that said, I still love my Vulture 26" bike, too. (But then this only makes sense since the Vulture is a custom frame, designed to fit me perfectly.)

    Personally, if I didn't already have a SS but knew what I already know, I'd go 29er, no question. That's not to imply that there's not plenty of fun to be had on a 26" wheeled bike.

    How's that for noncommittal.

    --Sparty
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    We get old because we quit riding.

  8. #8
    mtbr member
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    I built my SS 29er last year. I definitely clean obstacles regularly on my SS that give me problems on the 26er. I like the big wheels too...makes everyone else look like they're riding a kid's bike. I'm with everyone else. Ride both. Buy what makes you giggle!!
    CruisenSurly

  9. #9
    likes beer
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    just recently rode the Haro Mary SS 29er...I was immediately in love. Unfortunately, Im not allowed to go spend $1000 on a bike right now.......
    So, I'll still be cruising around on my recently SS-converted 1994 Bridgestone MB1.....or my wife's recently SS-converted 1992-ish Diamondback Sorrento----both of course are 26"

    Also, when I rode that Haro, I LOVED the bars so I just ordered a cheap ($16) knockoff version for my wife's DB---
    see: http://forums.mtbr.com/showthread.ph...3&goto=newpost

  10. #10
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  11. #11
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    you can pick up a number of complete 29er single speeds for around $500 to test the waters. redline moncog, raleigh xxix, gt peace, and se stout come to mind. the first three are chromoly, and the se is aluminum. i purchased a monocog a little less than a year ago, and i love it so much i sold the full squish geared 26er i had a few months after i got it.

  12. #12
    US Army Vet-Airborne 11B
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    if you don't mind ridin slightly used and wanna try the 29er thing (i do...maybe next year ...not to say i don't like my monocog 26er-love it ),i've seen used monocogs and similar go fer 300 bux in pretty nice shape...something else to think about,eh?
    '11 Origin 8 700CX
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  13. #13
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    69er?

  14. #14
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    That for the input guys. I have spent the last uple of days doing a little more reserch into the 29er SS's available in the UK and the market is very limited.

    Giant and Canondale don't import them into the UK. Only options I can see at the moment are the GT ($800), Rocky Mountain ($2600) On-One ($1200), other than that frame only are Niner One9 ($1100) and Indy Fab ($2500) last two are frame only. I am going to keep digging and see if I can find any other options, anybody in the UK who has any other ideas?

    29" is a new concept in the UK and it seems quite hard to get hold of bikes and frames at the minute due to manufacturers underestimating demand for ss 29er's.

    I am going to order a Santa Cruz Chameleon frame and give the SS thing a try, with a bit of look it should be here for the end of the week and the build can then commence.

    In the meantime I will continue to look for a 29er SS unless I can come up with any other options it may end up being an Indy Fab.

  15. #15
    local trails rider
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    UK?

    check if brant (at) on-one.co.uk has anything that suits you.
    http://www.on-one-shop.co.uk/?&MMN_position=315:315

    http://www.on-one-shop.co.uk/index.php?page_id=600

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by perttime
    Had a look there yesterday but they seem really low on stock at the minute. Then again so does everybody!

  17. #17
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    My first play into the SS world is a 29er - and I love it.... now I'm looking to build a Chameleon SS...

    My view of the 29er and 26er world.... a 29er is like a long-board surfboard - it's not going to be quick and you're not going to carve it up, but it's fun to cruise on and enjoy it for what it is... a 26er is like a short-board, get out there and tear it up and shred...

    Like I said I love the 29er, but it's not the bike for getting aggressive with jumps, or at the DJ park - that's what I'm building the Chameleon for....

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