26" bargains stopping me from 650b'ing it..am I in the wrong mindset?
The bike market is changing the 650b push on new bikes has been faster than most would have believed. Does having 650b wheels make a bike better? Depends on the bike. It’s possible to make a crap bike with a new fangled wheel size just as it was possible to make one with 26″.
Still from today if I was shopping for a new bike I’d be looking for the best deal for my budget.
You can still buy decent rims for 26″ bikes, you can still buy decent tyres. If it ever looks desperate you could buy a couple of rims and a couple of extra tyres but in 2 years that isn’t that likely. The majority of bikes out there are still 26″.
Your only big ticket risk is the fork but even if you couldn’t get spares you could easily fit a 650b fork.
I’m aiming for another 3-4 years from my 26″ FS and I’m not that worried.Posted 3 years ago
It’s new bike time and I feel I should go to 650b. I am looking for a trail ht (120-150 travel) and the spanner in the works is that there are quite a few 26″ sale bargains about either as a whole bike or custom build. Guessing the new wheel sizes are surpressing the 26″ bike / components market? My budget is circa £650-£1k max (cash not ctw) and beyond that means finance.
This decision is genuinely driving me insane as everything says get a 650b; and in budget it means the on-one 45650b, boardman team or something like the Vitus Sentier 275 (a real unknown). Possibly a stretch to the orange crush but that would mean finance.
I should be on my new bike by now but even after trying the orange and really liking how the 650b rides, saving circa 30-50% for a same or better specced 26″ bike is making the choice tougher and prolonged.
I need this bike to last a couple of years but not sure if the price issue is actually rational or irrational…
Any thoughts either way welcome.
CheersPosted 3 years agocoolhandlukeSubscriber
Just because there’s a new wheel size in town, that doesn’t mean the old wheel size is suddenly no good,
We all did fine on 26″ wheels, most of us still do. If the shops are now giving 26″ wheeled bikes away, I say take their stupidity as a gift and save yourself a fortune.Posted 3 years agoroverpigSubscriber
It is the job of the bike industry to convince you that this year’s shiny new bike is better than last year’s model, which you can usually get for a decent discount. They have various methods for trying to do this. It is your job to decide whether the improvements are really worth the extra cost. This has always been the case, whether it is frame angles, forks or in this case the diameter of the wheels.
Unfortunately, internet forums are not much help as we all have a vested interest. Those who have just spent a packet on a new 650b bike obviously want to believe that it is much better than all those cheaper options that they turned down. Those who are sticking with 26″ obviously want to believe that 650B makes little or no difference. I tend to side with the latter, but then I haven’t just bought a 650B bike.Posted 3 years agoendurogangsterMember
650b is been pushed hard at the minute because bike companies realise they have a short window of opportunity to flog as any 650b bikes as possible before everyone realises it’s all bollocks and there is no reason to pick that wheel size over 26″! I’d stick with 26 and watch the market come full circle in a couple of years, 26″ components will always be available!Posted 3 years agomindmap3Member
I’d get the most for your cash too, so if there’s a bargain 26er with a nice spec that would normally be out of your budget, snap it up.
A good 26er doesn’t become a bad bike over night because there’s a fancy new wheel size in town. You’ll still be able to get tyres, rims etc fir a while and there’ll be a good second hand market for forks for a while yet.Posted 3 years ago
If it makes you feel better why not?
I cant afford a new 650b bike. My next priority is a half decent roadbike. So 26 it is.
Anyone proclaiming anything new is marginally better is a business/retailers best dream. Me walking into a bikeshop brings no real benefit to them as I cant afford/just browse.Posted 3 years ago
Thanks for all the responses.
I had considered a 29er but want to take care of my longer travel trail ht first which seems to mean 26″ or 650b.
Having tried a few 29ers I deffo like them and looking to get one end of season. Not a priority at this stage though.
I have to get my act together and order soon otherwise I will be bikeless for the Easter holiday weekend.
Cheers again for all the help.Posted 3 years ago
For those saying 650b isn’t any different to 26″…. Get a grip, of course it is, just not as much so as 29″.
Yep, tried it, got a grip but not of the kool aid, 650b is just something to spend money on to make yourself feel an inch longer. Not saying 2014 bikes are better due to 650b, just better due to evolution.Posted 3 years ago
Yep, tried it, got a grip but not of the kool aid, 650b is just something to spend money on to make yourself feel an inch longer. Not saying 2014 bikes are better due to 650b, just better due to evolution.
I’m not saying 650b will be better or any kind of improvement but a 650b bike will ride differently to a 26″ bike, just as a 29er does. It might not be significant but the difference will be there.Posted 3 years agoepicycloSubscriber
I like all wheel sizes.
Got 16″, 20″, 26″ in several flavours (559, 584, 590, 597, and there’s more), 700c, 27″, 28″, and 29er (actually 700c).
They’re all bikes.
Wheelbase, geometry, and rider position also need to be considered along with wheel size rather than just any one factor.
I’d sooner do a 1,000 miles road ride on an old rubber suspension Moulton with its 16″ wheels and long wheelbase, than on a short wheelbase big wheeled bike.
So don’t worry about 26″ wheels becoming obsolete unless you’re trying to get good quality rims for a 26×1¼” 🙂Posted 3 years agochiefgrooveguruMember
I think as said above 26″ will come back and 650B will be shelved in a few years.
That is exactly what will happen. The manufacturers will make 27.5″ bikes only available to their DH & enduro race teams (because they’re fractionally quicker in most scenarios and thus good for winning races) and only make 26″ bikes for selling to the public as the latest emperor’s new clothes trick to replace the 27.5″ bikes they’ve been buying for a few years. Yes, everyone will definitely fall for that!Posted 3 years agoduckersMember
I went out to buy a carbon 29er last week and had to seriously hold myself back from buying a 26er with £1500 off the rrp!!!
26 still feels so agile but 29 does feel faster, I am thinking 29er but just get a second hand top end or new chinese carbon to try out, if I dont get on with flog it on and lose a daft couple of quid, not such a major hit. Anyone in Teesside area got a medium chinese carbon hardtail l can try?Posted 3 years agomatt_outandaboutSubscriber
Stuff 650B when there are bargains like this to be had…Posted 3 years ago
Rode a 650B version of my 29er Pyga. Felt like a 26. Really want to love it, but did nothing for me at all. Bought a 26inch Nukeproof Mega frame in the CRC sale for about £750. Which is a hoot to ride. It doesn’t carry speed like a 29er but who cares. Most of the time any speed issues are about my inability to deal with the fact it doesn’t ever really needs to slow down.
I’d be inclined to go with the ‘ride now, worrying later’ train of thought. If that means you get a sorted 26inch bike for peanuts, then why the hell not.Posted 3 years agobigblackshedSubscriber
“IF” I was about to buy a new bike, the only thing I’d spec would be a frame with 1.5″ head tube and tapered forks. I personally think 1 1/8″ forks will be the hardest to find aftermarket in a few years. Still plenty about, but choice is starting to get limited across the full price range.
26″ will be here for the foreseeable future, and probably longer.Posted 3 years ago
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