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RawbW

Anybody else here dislike 29ers?

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The market is pushing 29ers strong, but I can’t seem to get on board with them. Yes, I am riding a frame with short chainstays, not something with the 2010 era adaptation style geo that wasn’t nimble at all. Maybe my wheels and tires are just too heavy. They’re not an expensive wheel set but not terrible. But jeez, every time I want to accelerate I’m left with a feeling similar to rich carb jetting. Bwaaaaahhhhhh. Slow to respond. No snappy hardtail accel here. You have to ride the thing all out and definitely not overbrake for a tight corner(or any), or you will pay dearly. Not as flickable to turn.Just not as fun to jump around on either, big ol rolling hula hoops of disappointment.

its not all downsides, but for me the downs outweigh the ups. There is a TON of traction for braking and turning. They do roll over things very, very well. My overall trail time is probably quicker, problem is I don’t have as big of a smile doing it.

maybe I need to try superlight hula hoops, but I wouldn’t need to break the bank in a smaller wheelsize to have a good, light wheel.

next bike will have smaller wheels for sure. Whining over, for now😂.

i know there will be others firmly on the 29 side. I get it, just not my cup of tea.

Edited by RawbW

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I picked this up a couple years ago feeling a lot like you. I think BMC has it down as far as geometry- the short stays have this thing feeling so snappy I can punch it up climbs and roll over anything. I will say that the turns took a little to get used to....still not super confident but I think a lot of it has to do with finding the right tire.

So now my quest is to find something like this that has a shock on it. I’m tired of chasing these young bucks and rattling my fillings.

Currently looking at the new Pivot 429 Trail.
I like to climb...I like to murder these boys on the climbs but need to get on full suspension again after leaving it years ago.

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15 hours ago, mikerides33 said:

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I picked this up a couple years ago feeling a lot like you. I think BMC has it down as far as geometry- the short stays have this thing feeling so snappy I can punch it up climbs and roll over anything. I will say that the turns took a little to get used to....still not super confident but I think a lot of it has to do with finding the right tire.

So now my quest is to find something like this that has a shock on it. I’m tired of chasing these young bucks and rattling my fillings.

Currently looking at the new Pivot 429 Trail.
I like to climb...I like to murder these boys on the climbs but need to get on full suspension again after leaving it years ago.

That’s a fine machine you got there.

There are some real advantages to 29s. I want to ride something with a lightweight tire/wheel combo before never riding a 29 again. Maybe then I’d want to spring for an expensive wheelsize, but right now I’m so gun shy of them I have sights on 27.5.

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13 hours ago, mikerides33 said:

Thanks! What are you on now?

It is a fire eye hot tail 29. Built from mostly upper entry/lower mid level stuff, the frame itself was bought, then the pieces. Chromoly frame, 420mm chainstays, pretty slack, and long reach. It does wheelie at the thought of it, and it is pretty stinkin maneuverable. 

When pointed down it is a fun ride overall, and I don’t wish for it to be a full suspension machine. 

If doing the build again, I would go with 130mm of travel(instead of 140) and spring for a more expensive wheelset for lightness.

or maybe just build a small tire version of the same vibe hardtail.

CD954592-EB7A-4101-A903-279692A639C0.jpeg

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Great looking bike. That frame looks great how does it climb with the stays? I am digging the chromoly I have an awful crack in one of my seat stays from smashing a rock. I have to get a repair kit on eBay at some point although have been riding it like this for a while. Carbon freaks me out. That looks like a fun bike

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I’m a much more experienced mountain biker than dirt biker. My mountain bike actually costs more than my dirt bike, which to me seems ludicrous but is what it is.

I rode 26” for years like most. I’ve extensively tried 27.5” and 29” and I think hands down 29” is the way to go. ESPECIALLY if you ride where there are ruts or roots. The 29 tires just roll over just about anything and you can just mash on the pedals. They also take the harshness out.

Bike designers have finally figured out how to get the geometry right on 29ers to have shorter seat stays and decent suspension. I’m riding an Intense Primer and it has 100-125mm of travel and is reasonably short considering that, so it isn’t like driving a hook & ladder.

One thing is for certain though: on 29ers the best investment is good wheels. All that rotating weight you really feel. My Pimer is the factory edition and it came with carbon wheels. They aren’t cheap but they make a huge difference. I’d take much lower grade other components if needed before changing my wheels.

My advice would be to invest in the best wheels you can afford and I bet you’ll enjoy your bike a lot more.

IMG_8945.JPG

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You can add me to the "don't like 29ers" list.  😊

Not sure if it has something to do with rider size, I'm 5'10" 155lb.  I really like riding technical trails and the 29ers just seem huge to me.  My latest try is a 2015 Specialized, pretty much carbon fiber everything, a $6K bike.  The only place it seems to work well is high speed bumpy dirt roads.

My "old school" bike is my Scott Scale Premium, 26" carbon hard tail, that bike is awesome.  It is just as stable as the Specialized, but turns so easily, super tight trails are so easy.  And to maneuver around rocks, roots, etc so easy.  With the 29ers I feel like I am trying to work a bus thru the woods.  

I've also demo'ed a few 29ers, same feeling, just to large, too much bike to work through the trails.   

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I’m a much more experienced mountain biker than dirt biker. My mountain bike actually costs more than my dirt bike, which to me seems ludicrous but is what it is.

I rode 26” for years like most. I’ve extensively tried 27.5” and 29” and I think hands down 29” is the way to go. ESPECIALLY if you ride where there are ruts or roots. The 29 tires just roll over just about anything and you can just mash on the pedals. They also take the harshness out.

Bike designers have finally figured out how to get the geometry right on 29ers to have shorter seat stays and decent suspension. I’m riding an Intense Primer and it has 100-125mm of travel and is reasonably short considering that, so it isn’t like driving a hook & ladder.

One thing is for certain though: on 29ers the best investment is good wheels. All that rotating weight you really feel. My Pimer is the factory edition and it came with carbon wheels. They aren’t cheap but they make a huge difference. I’d take much lower grade other components if needed before changing my wheels.

My advice would be to invest in the best wheels you can afford and I bet you’ll enjoy your bike a lot more.

IMG_8945.thumb.JPG.e50b40a3867eb80986e5b6fa6e6cf662.JPG

Yep. That is a beautiful bike and I totally agree about the roots and chatter. That bike was on my wish list and then of course I wanted the Sniper. Now I’m looking at the Trail 429. How do you like climbing on your Primer? Have you ridden the Sniper?

I hear you on the prices it’s nuts. I stopped riding 450s and got a 125- mtn bike with a motor and got off the road bicycle and hit more mtn biking a few years ago thinking great I will save money..........wrong!!!!

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Yep. That is a beautiful bike and I totally agree about the roots and chatter. That bike was on my wish list and then of course I wanted the Sniper. Now I’m looking at the Trail 429. How do you like climbing on your Primer? Have you ridden the Sniper?

I hear you on the prices it’s nuts. I stopped riding 450s and got a 125- mtn bike with a motor and got off the road bicycle and hit more mtn biking a few years ago thinking great I will save money..........wrong!!!!


Love the Primer. Came off a 26” Spider. For me, climbing efficiency really matters and I feel that for the travel it has it has, the Primer climbs really welll. In fact, my most common ride is 30 min road each way to a 1 hour trail loop. The road portions have serious hills and my times are not that far below that of my road bike.

Sniper wasn’t out yet. Never even heard of it until your post! It’s so funny In riding a YZ250 with 10+ year old tech and Intense changes their mountain bikes about 4x more frequently. But that’s why they cost so much. They cannot depreciate the tooling over many years.

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8 hours ago, mikerides33 said:


Great looking bike. That frame looks great how does it climb with the stays? I am digging the chromoly I have an awful crack in one of my seat stays from smashing a rock. I have to get a repair kit on eBay at some point although have been riding it like this for a while. Carbon freaks me out. That looks like a fun bikeemoji1303.png

Thank you!:thumbsup:

Chromoly is nice, and is a solid long lasting platform. Just make sure to use a frame treatment inside to prevent rust, especially in humid, wet places. It is a fun bike, maybe it just needs lighter wheels to complete it. But very fun.

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8 hours ago, Tahoe Gator said:

I’m a much more experienced mountain biker than dirt biker. My mountain bike actually costs more than my dirt bike, which to me seems ludicrous but is what it is.

I rode 26” for years like most. I’ve extensively tried 27.5” and 29” and I think hands down 29” is the way to go. ESPECIALLY if you ride where there are ruts or roots. The 29 tires just roll over just about anything and you can just mash on the pedals. They also take the harshness out.

Bike designers have finally figured out how to get the geometry right on 29ers to have shorter seat stays and decent suspension. I’m riding an Intense Primer and it has 100-125mm of travel and is reasonably short considering that, so it isn’t like driving a hook & ladder.

One thing is for certain though: on 29ers the best investment is good wheels. All that rotating weight you really feel. My Pimer is the factory edition and it came with carbon wheels. They aren’t cheap but they make a huge difference. I’d take much lower grade other components if needed before changing my wheels.

My advice would be to invest in the best wheels you can afford and I bet you’ll enjoy your bike a lot more.

IMG_8945.JPG

You are probably right. Minus the heavy rototional weight, it is a hoot. Light wheels would probably bring it perfection. Now, to save the hard earned $$$.

nice dirt machines!

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2 hours ago, usedtobefast said:

You can add me to the "don't like 29ers" list.  😊

Not sure if it has something to do with rider size, I'm 5'10" 155lb.  I really like riding technical trails and the 29ers just seem huge to me.  My latest try is a 2015 Specialized, pretty much carbon fiber everything, a $6K bike.  The only place it seems to work well is high speed bumpy dirt roads.

My "old school" bike is my Scott Scale Premium, 26" carbon hard tail, that bike is awesome.  It is just as stable as the Specialized, but turns so easily, super tight trails are so easy.  And to maneuver around rocks, roots, etc so easy.  With the 29ers I feel like I am trying to work a bus thru the woods.  

I've also demo'ed a few 29ers, same feeling, just to large, too much bike to work through the trails.   

When I get a chance to demo some 27.5 and 29s with really light wheels, I will make my next bike decision. Most likely small wheels will win. 

29s have some advantages but I like things as maneuverable as possible. If people think 26 was bad, I used to own one of those specialized big hits with the 26f/24r. Never minded it lol.

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On 11/3/2018 at 11:36 AM, RawbW said:

The market is pushing 29ers strong, but I can’t seem to get on board with them. Yes, I am riding a frame with short chainstays, not something with the 2010 era adaptation style geo that wasn’t nimble at all. Maybe my wheels and tires are just too heavy. They’re not an expensive wheel set but not terrible. But jeez, every time I want to accelerate I’m left with a feeling similar to rich carb jetting. Bwaaaaahhhhhh. Slow to respond. No snappy hardtail accel here. You have to ride the thing all out and definitely not overbrake for a tight corner(or any), or you will pay dearly. Not as flickable to turn.Just not as fun to jump around on either, big ol rolling hula hoops of disappointment.

its not all downsides, but for me the downs outweigh the ups. There is a TON of traction for braking and turning. They do roll over things very, very well. My overall trail time is probably quicker, problem is I don’t have as big of a smile doing it.

maybe I need to try superlight hula hoops, but I wouldn’t need to break the bank in a smaller wheelsize to have a good, light wheel.

next bike will have smaller wheels for sure. Whining over, for now😂.

i know there will be others firmly on the 29 side. I get it, just not my cup of tea.

I was firmly the opposite.  First ride on a 29er, even with old school geometry and heavy wheels, and I was hooked.  Modern geo and wide, carbon rims make them even better.  Then again I've always preferred stable, even slow handling motos as they're easier to go fast on.

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5 hours ago, ACree said:

I was firmly the opposite.  First ride on a 29er, even with old school geometry and heavy wheels, and I was hooked.  Modern geo and wide, carbon rims make them even better.  Then again I've always preferred stable, even slow handling motos as they're easier to go fast on.

What type of mtb do you do? I know xc people especially want the rollover of the 29s as they are usually most efficient over the time of a whole ride. 

On the moto side-i picked up a Suzuki because I read about its razor edge handling as opposed to stability, so maybe that says something about me lol

 

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What type of mtb do you do? I know xc people especially want the rollover of the 29s as they are usually most efficient over the time of a whole ride. 
On the moto side-i picked up a Suzuki because I read about its razor edge handling as opposed to stability, so maybe that says something about me lol
 

From XC to some all mountain, wet side pacific NW, so trails that are frequently rocky, rooty, and steep at times. For fast and flowy, 29ers are absolutely the way to go. When travel gets longer, bike geo has to be a little more well thought out to make 29ers work well, but at this point they do. There’s a reason enduro and DH is even moving that way a bit.

I used to have Honda’s, so I know what you mean about quickness. What I found was that when I went to a kawi, it was more stable, more work to turn, but that resulted in going faster on the track. It just didn’t feel as exciting. I think that’s what many who like the quickness of 27.5 or even 26 don’t realize, that the slow, maybe even boring feeling 29er might well be going faster.

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5 minutes ago, ACree said:


From XC to some all mountain, wet side pacific NW, so trails that are frequently rocky, rooty, and steep at times. For fast and flowy, 29ers are absolutely the way to go. When travel gets longer, bike geo has to be a little more well thought out to make 29ers work well, but at this point they do. There’s a reason enduro and DH is even moving that way a bit.

I used to have Honda’s, so I know what you mean about quickness. What I found was that when I went to a kawi, it was more stable, more work to turn, but that resulted in going faster on the track. It just didn’t feel as exciting. I think that’s what many who like the quickness of 27.5 or even 26 don’t realize, that the slow, maybe even boring feeling 29er might well be going faster.

Overall even in enduro now I think the 29s are faster, they do steamroll everything. Some courses may favor one or the other. It could be broken down to riding for fun vs riding for times/placement I suppose. 29s do feel slower, but it really is a feeling, they are going as fast or faster. Certain people may be faster on one or the other due to personal preference and comfort. 

The trademark kawi handling lol. Stable and predictable. Early 2000s 2 stroke kawis are fun, stable and yet since it’s a 2 stroke it willingly turns. I think In 06 and 7 the handling out of the box wasn’t great for the kx250, but could be fixed. The kx-fs have always been stable and predictable to my knowledge though, definitely desirable to some.

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When I bought my Giant Anthem X 29, I went into the bike shop thinking 27.5. They had a leftover 29er and insisted I give it a trial run for the day (yes, all day).

I quickly learned that frame geometry has more to do with turning than wheel size because this 29er turns tight!

Between the frame geometry and wheel size, I was collecting PR's on each trail I rode. Now, I mostly ride a 27.5 x 3 hardtail, but am much faster on the Giant

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I am faster on 29" wheels, but enjoy riding the 26" wheels more.  I have never really been on a bike that wasn't at least some fun, so I won't say that I hate 29.

Maybe part of the reason that I/most are faster on a 29er is because they react a bit slower and force us to ride smoother?   Sometimes it is fun to ride a bike that reacts faster...

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