- 26 vs 650b vs 29 wheels
I can never understand why people open a thread and go to the effort of posting a reply just to say that they are not interested. Is it compulsory to open every thread or something?
OK, it’s a subject that has been covered loads of times, but if you are in the market for a new bike it is still a nightmare.
Personally I’ve owned 26″ and 29er bikes and think there is a place for both. It is the wholesale move from 26 to 650b that bothers me. Nothing against manufacturers coming up with a different wheel size. But when every single manufacturer (pretty much without exception) drops 26 in favour of 650b then something is clearly up. Either 650b is clearly better and as soon as you try it you’d never want to go back, or something else is going on.
Anyway, good luck trying to make your mind up. I fear that you won’t get much help here, but I hope you find something you like.Posted 4 years ago
@op, seriously, my take is:
29 for hard tails and short travel FS that you’ll use for going places and having fun (choose a HT if it will do the job)
650b for medium – long travel FS that you’ll pedal uphill
26 for DH specific bikes (nobody rides them uphill they push them)
or put another way, the biggest wheel that will do the job is the best for the job
anyway that’s how my money will be spent in the futurePosted 4 years ago
Thanks rover pig and mattjg for the info:-) there’s an element of trying to future proof myself a bit as well. My 26 HT is ageing but does the trick (mostly) but I’m wanting to push myself a bit more now so keeping climbs in check whilst retaining manoeuvrability is another factor. I guess I’ll have to do a bit of testing:-)Posted 4 years ago
Unless you’re really tall or short, it’s cliched and overused, but tiny 29ers are awkward as are 26″ bikes with 3 foot of seatpost sticking out. We’ve got both in the house.
On a completely unrelated note, if you can test a 29er trail bike I’d give it a go. Clicked instantly with my Stumpy and have been beating all my personal bests every single ride with it since. It does simplify the trail a bit, but it’s sort of what I was after anyway.Posted 4 years ago
29ers for tall people.
26ers for everyone else.
650b for those who will suffer greatly in governmental wheelsize correctional facilities when I am elected to power.
Every time someone buys a 650b bike, Satan becomes more powerful.
Is that what you want, a world where the Dark Lord and Master rules by hatred and violence?
Because that’s what will happen if we allow ourselves to be anally violated by corporate greed.
Think about it.Posted 4 years ago
Whatever you buy will be a punt but you should defo try them all, and a decent ride not a round the car park sit on.
Personally I think big wheels are more fun but there does come a point where getting a big wheel in a frame plus a lot of space to allow it to move makes for a big bike. (I sold my 120mm FS 29er for this reason, I want something smaller, and I don’t mean fit).
Have fun and let us know how you get on.Posted 4 years agocycl1ngjbMember
So here is the summary…
26″ – been around for ages – plenty of people still love them (me included) – several predictions of their imminent demise about – critical mass means they will be around for a good few years yet – plenty of manufacturers dropping this size (IMHO – 26″ wheeled bikes are the most fun). Most of the bikes I see out on the trails have 26″ wheels.
650b – the newbie – apparently very popular – availability of parts not good currently (one of my mates had to get parts shipped from the US to get his finished (and no – it’s not odd bespoke kit)) – manufacturers don’t seem to have kept pace with (susposed) demand (IMHO – only marginal difference compared to 26″ – having demo’d a couple the benefits are negligible). Looks likely to be ‘the main standard’ going forward, whether we want it or not.
29er – the big popular thing last year, but seems to be moving towards mainly XC/short travel bikes. Very likely to continue to exist in the future, but probably becoming more niche. I can see the point of them, but they’re not for me (IMHO they are less engaging to ride & more suited to mile munching).
At the moment I’ll be sticking to 26″ wheels (after a brief flirtation with 29″) – the market will (hopefully) sort itself out in the next couple of years.Posted 4 years ago
I think it depends a bit on your attitude to front wheel lifts (manual, wheelie) as they are a fair bit harder with a larger wheel. If you never bother with them and just roll over stuff then a bigger wheel makes sense as it rolls over things better. If you find front wheel lifts dead easy on a 26″ bike then a bigger wheel may still work as it’s not much harder. If, however, they are still a work in progress I can’t see why you’d want to make things any harder for yourself.
@Rusty: good luck with your world domination, but the way things are going 26″ isn’t going to be an option for anybody looking for a decent MTB soon.Posted 4 years ago
Well, only if we are stupid enough to let them.
Sadly, history suggests that people will fall for any old marketing bullshit – hell, they’ll even queue up to be the first to be ripped off.
This willingness to capitulate is pathetic, but were so used to believing what we’re told, it’s hardly surprising.Posted 4 years agoHTTP404Member
According to Giant –Posted 4 years ago
26-inch for sure – will disappear.
29-inch will be phased out in approximately two years
3 sizes, 2 of which claim to be so much better with as much conviction as one of those mental preachers telling us all we will go to hell unless we send them money or kill everyone else, so it’s probably true.
The only thing we can probably agree on is there is no chance of a consensus on the issue.
The only certainty is there will be a wheel size question on the front page.Posted 4 years ago
I’m serious about the Satan/650b link, btw.
Some extensive research has revealed photographs of some famous 650b riders practicing their disgusting, evil, rituals:
‘One Reich, one volk, one tyre size!’
Satan’s little helper makes plans to convert all hire bikes to 27.5:
The first 650b bike off the production line is ‘heiled’ as a success:
Tests show no correlation between larger wheelsize and larger IQ:
Vicky P tests the new 650b track bike – they make everything ugly:
The American Cycle Press Association Band express their delight at the new ‘innovation’:
Be afraid.Posted 4 years ago
Be very afraid.bellefiedMember
try them out and don’t be put off by those that don’t like change.
There is room in the market for three wheel sizes, if some move away from 26 or 29 others will take their place as you can’t beat the market in the long run and the manufacturers will gravitate towards where the sales are.Posted 4 years ago
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