29er DH bike?

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  • 29er DH bike?
  • michaelmcc
    Member

    Anyone see one arriving any time over the next year or so? Unless there is one already out and I’ve missed the boat.

    Rorschach
    Member


    Forgot Lenz

    michaelmcc
    Member

    Nice. But from now on let’s count ones that made production only 😉 .

    Wonder why that one never did make production though?!

    munkyboy
    Member

    Wheels too big to reach a decent amount of travel without hitting seat tube/saddle/plums

    deviant
    Member

    The interviews with Intense are online, with the 2951 (as they called it) they had to shorten travel to 180mm to accommodate large wheels, proponents of 29ers will tell you this is fine as the roll over benefits of large wheels mean you don’t need the same amount of travel as on a 26inch bike…trouble is the theory doesn’t always translate to real life and the bike wasn’t as good as 200mm 26inch bikes that were around at the time….I believe feedback from test riders also said it was a pig to ride and on tech tracks it wouldn’t turn….I should imagine on some of the 10yrd wide smooth and swooping lines at some bike parks it’d be awesome but with a move to tighter tech stuff in DH this year with Lourdes, Val di Sole and Andorra in particular it would be like riding a barge….then again that Intense 2951 was 5yrs ago so maybe having now played with 27.5 designers could find a way to shoehorn 29inch wheels into a frame and get it all working together nicely?

    jimjam
    Member

    Plus you have the additional wheel and tyre weight which is substantial when you get up to those sizes.

    michaelmcc
    Member

    Yeah I’m a believer that with 29 inch wheels, you don’t need to have as much travel as 26 or 27.5 as the size of the wheels take away some of the bumps etc. So can’t see the switch from 200mm to 180mm would be a huge issue. 29er geometry has certainly improved in the last 4 or 5 years so I think the issue of feeling like you’re turning a barge could be easily rectified.

    legend
    Member

    It’ll still feel like you’re trying to accelerate/turn a barge as soon as you put 2.4″ dual ply 29er tyres on it

    michaelmcc – Member
    Yeah I’m a believer that with 29 inch wheels, you don’t need to have as much travel as 26 or 27.5 as the size of the wheels take away some of the bumps etc.

    They don’t do anythign to smooth out a 20 foot drop though

    Premier Icon chakaping
    Subscriber

    I’m a big fan of 29ers but I don’t think I’d want one as a DH bike personally.

    The current WC DH bikes don’t have many problems eating up rough terrain as it is TBF.

    Tom_W1987
    Member

    Yeah I’m a believer that with 29 inch wheels, you don’t need to have as much travel as 26 or 27.5 as the size of the wheels take away some of the bumps etc. So can’t see the switch from 200mm to 180mm would be a huge issue. 29er geometry has certainly improved in the last 4 or 5 years so I think the issue of feeling like you’re turning a barge could be easily rectified.

    You obviously know more than the test riders.

    And there is a world of difference between 180 and 200mm, which is why most of the downhill world has settled on that front and rear.

    michaelmcc
    Member

    They don’t do anythign to smooth out a 20 foot drop though

    Aren’t gaps and table tops a lot more common than drops in wc DH?

    michaelmcc
    Member

    You obviously know more than the test riders.

    Well excuuuuusse me Sir 🙄 .

    If the 29er test DH bikes were a few years old, then I’m sure newer more refined models (if they were to make another one) would feel a lot better.

    Not saying I think DH bikes should be 29er, just curious to see what others think. They might have advantages on high speed courses, maybe not so much lower speed tech courses. But most riders are going at a high speed regardless of the track these days.

    Premier Icon singlespeedstu
    Subscriber

    One word.
    Explosion.
    No one wants that on a DH bike.

    P-Jay
    Member

    I personally believe they were one of the catalysts behind the ‘650B revolution’ a few manufacturers tried publicly, I’d bet they all tried privately, they didn’t really work and one day someone uttered the words “if only there was a half-way house…..” Before running off the find the big book of obscure bike wheel sizes, and the rest they say is history.

    I’ve nothing to back this up of course, just a hunch.

    Premier Icon Northwind
    Subscriber

    The 2 things they used to talk about were travel and wheelbase. But these days many of the top riders are rarely if ever using the full travel, and the bikes have got longer anyway.

    There’s never been a full selection of parts to try. So you end up compromising on forks, wheels, tyres. Look at all the recent racewinners on dorados, to see what that’d mean. I reckon if any of the top manufacturers really had the appetite, we’d have seen world cup wins, even if only by pushing them under the best riders and lavishing fortunes on them. So that Trek, and those 40s, are pretty interesting. I’d always kind of assumed it’d be Specialized, since they’ve had race success just by running Enduro 29ers in dh races.

    Premier Icon mos
    Subscriber

    Didn’t someone win the DH at sea otter or pietermarizberg on an enduro 29er?

    Premier Icon Northwind
    Subscriber

    Gwin won sea otter on what looked like an almost stock enduro 29. But I don’t know if sea otter really counts tbh! Mitch Gruffalo’s had a couple of cracks at the world cup but I don’t think he’s completed a clean race run on it- (he won a US national round on a stumpy 29er, IIRC he had a bottle and bottle cage fitted just to prove a point…)

    Premier Icon woodster
    Subscriber

    DH-light

    I’m wondering what my codeine would feel like with a set of Dorados at 175mm

    Tom_W1987
    Member

    The 2 things they used to talk about were travel and wheelbase. But these days many of the top riders are rarely if ever using the full travel, and the bikes have got longer anyway.

    If you notice, they don’t cut the fork length down though and get the head angle back by using an angle reducer set.

    The 200mm gives them great room to play with things like spring progressiveness/bottom out resistance. That last inch of travel is used for big hard hits.

    And I still see them using plenty of rear wheel travel, which quite often exceeds 200mm.

    Premier Icon Northwind
    Subscriber

    Tom_W1987 – Member

    The 200mm gives them great room to play with things like spring progressiveness/bottom out resistance. That last inch of travel is used for big hard hits.

    That’s what I’m saying though, it isn’t, with some riders. People picked up on Gwin- who says he just never uses the full travel while riding- but it wasn’t new even then, Leov ran his harder frinstance. So you’ve got people already choosing a suspension setup that’s compatible with shorter travel, purely for its own sake.

    Course, that’s not a reason to change, it’s just removing a barrier to change, not the same.

    Tom_W1987
    Member

    Gwin to me, still looks to be using all of his rear travel on big hits.

    If Gwin never ever, uses 200mm at the front then I do not know why Specialized haven’t cut the forks down and altered the geo to boot. But I’m guessing that there is a reason for it. If he’s using an air spring at the front, then that may be why. If they cut the fork down to 180mm, it would end up with different characteristics to a 200mm fork that’s only seeing 180mm of travel used would it not? It’s my understanding that air forks almost never see full travel unless they are undersprung.

    I’ve also noticed that some world cup level riders are going back to 26….

    Klunk
    Member

    didn’t 29ers blow it for dh when that chap crashed 20 metres from the start at some world cup event. It was much anticipated at the time and quite the comical anti-climax 😆

    mboy
    Member

    I personally believe they were one of the catalysts behind the ‘650B revolution’ a few manufacturers tried publicly, I’d bet they all tried privately, they didn’t really work and one day someone uttered the words “if only there was a half-way house…..” Before running off the find the big book of obscure bike wheel sizes, and the rest they say is history.
    I’ve nothing to back this up of course, just a hunch.

    Your theory isn’t too far off from the truth! Or at least the version of it that I’ve heard…

    Seems that in an effort to go faster, messing around with 29er DH bikes proved that in many circumstances there was significant benefits to be had by going to a bigger wheel. Though tests proved that of course, 29ers did have their limits for long travel applications. The speed and grip benefits were noticeable though, so the next logical step was to find the inbetweener rim size. Crucially, Kirk Pacenti and a few other Americans had been playing with this niche wheel size for a little while, championing its benefits. Didn’t take long for the big boys to make a few prototype 650b DH and Gravity Enduro bikes, go out and beat their best times on 26″ wheels, and for the whole industry to shift lock stock pretty much overnight!

    Of course the benefits of a 1″ bigger rim are very small, but as long as they’re measurable to a racer, that’s all that matters.

    jimjam
    Member

    Gwin is the exception rather than the rule. Most of the pros are using all or most of their travel and there are plenty of galleries out there which show it.

    deviant
    Member

    Interesting thread this, I’ve softened my stance on the wheel size issue, I was staunchly 26 but wanted a new FS and…well….there’s not a lot out there anymore in 26 so 650b it was.

    I still have my 26 HT and it’s as good to ride as it ever was, spares will be available for years I should imagine given how many 26 bikes out there, good money making opportunity for someone to keep parts available to all those bikes.

    With regard 29ers, I’ve ridden a few….test rode some when picking the FS, they genuinely did ‘flatten the trail’…..whether this is good or bad is what I’m undecided about, if it can be made to work in a DH bike then for racing it comes down to times and times only….if they’re faster they’ll catch on, for weekend warriors who want to have fun and feel the trail a 29er DH bike might be a step too far towards numbness on the bike.

    Interesting from Tom about WC racers going back to 26….I’m assuming these are small teams or privateers as I can’t see factory teams losing face like that?….it does back up what I’ve seen at grass roots races this year, virtually everyone is still on 26 and going faster than ever do to improvements in forks, shocks etc and phenomenal brakes like Saints and Zees accessible to everyone….tyres too….Magic Marys have been everywhere this year!

    I think in the grand scheme of things wheel size can help but it’s just part of the setup, far from the be all and end all.

    jimjam
    Member

    I think it was just Casey Brown’s prototype. Presumably because she’s smaller and the designers have more freedom to adjust geometry with smaller wheels.

    robhughes
    Member

    That gwin pic is shopped.There more of them. 🙂

    Nicolai/Mojo have started court proceedings after seeing that photo, Rob. They have copyright on batshitmental geometry.

    Saw this, and though of this thread.

Viewing 33 posts - 1 through 33 (of 33 total)

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