Buyer’s Angst – Is 650b On the Way Out?

Viewing 31 posts - 41 through 71 (of 71 total)
  • Buyer’s Angst – Is 650b On the Way Out?
  • Premier Icon BadlyWiredDog
    Subscriber

    Anyone else reading this and getting nostalgic for 2016?

    Wasn’t 2016 discontinued and replaced with 2017? Which in turn was superseded by 2018, which feels so last year now. I confidently predict that there’ll be a new annual standard along shortly, let’s call it 2020. I reckon 2020 will roll faster and change direction more rapidly. It’ll be the only year in town for around 12 months.

    Premier Icon Poopscoop
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    Nobeerinthefridge

    So, it’s taken the industry 10 years to get 29ers working for all, but 650b is balls?. Oaft

    Sorry mate, what I really mean is, it just should have stayed at 26 with 29 developing gradually as an alternative choice, not a replacement.

    philxx1975
    Member

    You should try being a teacher or a fireman!

    Pah, why get a proper job when you can ponce about with bikes all day.

    Sorry mate, what I really mean is, it just should have stayed at 26 with 29 developing gradually as an alternative choice, not a replacement.

    It makes sense to have 2 wheel sizes further apart, a la 26 and 29, as the separation is at least big enough to possibly make a real difference, all other things being equal. To that extent, you’re right, but when 650b came along there wasn’t exactly much growth in the 29er market, Giant had just ditched them IIRC?.

    But folk claiming that 29 is better. or 650b is better are just a bit silly really, given the amount of other variables outwith wheel size.

    I had a 29 FS, it was awrite, but not mind blowing or owt, but it was only one bike so I wouldn’t dream of making a sweeping statement based on that. I don’t buy bikes that often, and to that end it’s maybe influenced me a little, in that 26 and 650b has worked well for me on the geometry of bikes that I like, so why do I want to change again?.

    Mibbe 29 needs to be replaced by 30!….. 🙂

    philjunior
    Member

    Mibbe 29 needs to be replaced by 30!….. 🙂

    Where’s that video of the nichemonger on the 32er riding up stairs when you need it?

    I’ve noticed the 2020 Kona Unit X is now back to 29″

    Premier Icon Northwind
    Subscriber

    If the last few years have taught us anything, it’s that anything and everything might become “obsolete” tomorrow and we’ll not be able to predict it, prevent it or avoid it. So you might as well not worry about it. But as far as I can tell, 650b is still the main wheel size, at least til friday.

    Aside; I literally just found my first ever actual disadvantage to a good 29er- the bigger rear wheel gets in the way for megavalanche cowardly wheel sitting on the snow.

    Interestingly Giant seem to have removed from the internet the video where their product manager was putting forward the 27.5 wheel size and stating that all other MTB wheelsizes were dead and that 27.5 was the best of all worlds with all the conviction of a man with a gun being held to his head . I wonder why they removed it ? https://www.pinkbike.com/news/650B-For-All-Giants-Elite-Level-Mountain-Bikes.html That’s the best I could find . Notice the beautifully reasoned arguments at the bottom of the page .

    Premier Icon robertpb
    Subscriber

    We used to do a monthly ride out of Wendover, one wet January there was about 28 of us, the ride usually started around 11am and finished at 5pm.

    The mix of wheels was about equal amounts of 26″ and 650b also some 29″, but could you guess the year.

    Well suprise, suprise it was 1986, so always take the death of wheel sizes with a pinch of salt.

    Premier Icon Rusty Spanner
    Subscriber

    Is 650b On the Way Out?

    I hope so.

    Be nice if it destroyed the businesses of those who promoted it in the first place.

    Premier Icon robertpb
    Subscriber

    You may not have seen the 26″ wheel on MTB’s in the first place, because Charlie Kelly and Gary Fisher were interested in going to 650b’s back in 1981.

    Premier Icon Rusty Spanner
    Subscriber

    Yes, I know.

    It doesn’t detract from the point that the introduction of 650b was a cynical attempt by a bunch of shysters to sell pointless toss to the gullible.

    It doesn’t really suit manufacturers to support multiple wheel sizes in the long run.

    OMFG what. Of course it does. They’re revelling in the stupidity of consumers allowing them to run three different wheelsizes in parallel for six years. I’m sure they’ll do everything they can to keep the gravy train on the road as long as possible.

    Forgive my mixed metaphor

    Premier Icon funkmasterp
    Subscriber

    I don’t understand any of the standards. Got a new (to me) bike last week. Stooge Speedball with a 3.0 Surly Dirt Wizard on the front and a 2.4 Maxxis Ikon on back. It’s silly fast on and off road compared to the Cotic Flare I had before. It’s all marketing bollocks. Just get the bike you like the look of 👍🏼

    scruff
    Member

    29ers look awkward so I don’t like them and only ride matt black size XL 27.5 wheeled frames. I don’t like the look of 650b’s either but am OK with 700c bikes in matt black.

    There isn’t an awful lot of clearance between your backside and a 29″ tyre on a long travel bike on steep trails, especially when hitting drops at relatively low speed. I contact it occasionally and my legs are longer than 90% of men and over 99% of women * so presumably some people would like a smaller tyre on the back?

    * According to this: https://multisite.eos.ncsu.edu/www-ergocenter-ncsu-edu/wp-content/uploads/sites/18/2016/06/Anthropometric-Detailed-Data-Tables.pdf

    Premier Icon vincienup
    Subscriber

    With sensible head on, I had comparable 27.5 and 29 HTs. Same company, similar geo, similar build kit used by me etc. I kept the 27.5. I couldn’t put my finger on why, but it was genuinely more fun in my life. The 29 was bloody good though, and wasn’t an easy decision to sell.

    I’m happy with either and would like to see both survive.

    I can fully imagine this is all about either manufacturers or shops wanting to simplify stock.

    Who gives a shite. Just ride the bike you own and enjoy it.

    Funny how Danny Hart went away from 29ers to a mullet bike and Troy Brosnan still managed to lead the 2019 DH WC on a 27.5 bike.

    I don’t think there’s any demonstrable difference in speed between the two wheel sizes, especially as 29ers get really heavy in the wheel department as soon as you put decent tyres and wide enough rims on them.

    And of course 27.5 is more fun/nimble. Josh Bryceland spoke about this when he was asked about why he was on 27.5 on his new Cannondale, and I think he knows a bit more about bikes than random STW members.

    JP

    Premier Icon cookeaa
    Subscriber

    TBH I skipped 27.5 and went straight from 26″ to 29″ and I reckon it’s much betterer (for me at least)…

    I doubt they’ll kill tweener wheels completely, especially after the fuss made when they were imposed on the MTB buying public.

    But at least some bike manufacturers are already selling the same basic bikes with either 29″ or 27+ as build options, it gives some notion of choice while actually allowing them to keep COGs/OEM/tooling differences to a minimum…

    It doesn’t really suit manufacturers to support multiple wheel sizes in the long run.

    Go on the specialized website and look at this year’s range of stumpjumpers, there’s a ridiculous number of versions, basically the same front end in carbon or Al, multiple tweaked rear ends to adjust travel or angles and then all x2 so they can offer it in both 29 and 27.5 flavours… They love multiple wheel sizes!

    Premier Icon funkmasterp
    Subscriber

    Josh Bryceland spoke about this when he was asked about why he was on 27.5 on his new Cannondale, and I think he knows a bit more about bikes than random STW members.

    Not many folk in here will ride a bike like he does though. That’s the thing, everyone has different needs / wants. Just ride what you like. I’m a serial swapper and have gone rigid for the first time. It’s like a big, daft retro BMX. Josh wouldn’t approve, but it makes me smile. Less time worrying, more time just riding 😀

    exsee
    Member

    I don’t know what the big manufacturers are planning.
    If I had to choose one bike to buy tomorrow it would be 650b regardless. Buy what you fancy, it will all be fine.

    Josh Bryceland spoke about this when he was asked about why he was on 27.5 on his new Cannondale, and I think he knows a bit more about bikes than random STW members.

    Not many folk in here will ride a bike like he does though. That’s the thing, everyone has different needs / wants. Just ride what you like. I’m a serial swapper and have gone rigid for the first time. It’s like a big, daft retro BMX. Josh wouldn’t approve, but it makes me smile. Less time worrying, more time just riding 😀

    That’s not really the point I was making. A previous post in this thread stated that 27.5 wasn’t more nimble, but someone who knows a lot about bike handling (Bryceland) clearly stated that it is and that was the reason he chose to ride it.

    I don’t care what other people say about 29, I just don’t think it works well on long travel bikes for riders shorter than about 5’11.

    JP

    tails
    Member

    I feel they are trying to phase it out partly to save production costs and partly that racers have all gone 29. It’s a bit frustrating as I bought a nice 27.5 whyte 909 last year with the view of eventually putting the parts on a full suss frame. Orbea have already shelved 27.5 I think trek are fast on their heels. At 5′ 10″ in riding shoes I don’t really fit 29ers. At the same time I don’t want to be stuck with a worthless bike if and when I decide to change frame.

    Premier Icon russyh
    Subscriber

    There are still racers and teams running 27.5, top manufactures have both options.  Trek as an example have the remedy in 650b and the Slash in 29.  SC have the Bronson and nomad with the mega tower and high tower.  Ibis the Ripmo and Mojo HD4.  From where I am sat it’s the best the industry has been for years with options to suit almost everyone.  29 is not the panacea everyone thinks it is as much as 27.5 was, but it seems things have settled now with two wheel sizes which (for me at least) offer different things, but like I said earlier I have owned countless 29ers sold on the marketing. Only recently to move back to 650b as it just works better for me, my size and riding.

    I really think it may eventually settle on a mixed 27.5 rear/29 front combo – that totally makes sense IMO.

    JP

    Premier Icon tomhoward
    Subscriber

    You seem to want to buy a bike now that will be at the bleeding edge of tech for years to come. Believe me, you can buy the most bang on trend, blingiest, most progressive bike in the world, but it won’t stay that way forever, something will supersede it within a year or two. This, however will not ruin what you have. Buy a bike, after much testing and research, that you like riding, and ride it. Your tastes may change, your riding may change, if so, sell that bike (or don’t) and buy another one. My 5.5 year old 5010 still blows me away every time I ride it. I thought it was perfect when I bought it, and nothing since, in the same category, has made me think ‘ermagerd, where have you been all my life?!’ like that 5010 did. Sure I’ve got other bikes, for different days of the week types of riding I do, but they are great, and won’t be changed just because a hub axle can be made a few mm wider.

    Premier Icon johnjn2000
    Subscriber

    Shhhhhhhhh but I heard that 26 inch wheels were the new 29 inch. Much more flickable apparently and acceleration is significantly better, not sure how widely known this info is so keep it to yerselves

    Premier Icon robertpb
    Subscriber

    Then Niner go and build a 650b.

    plus one
    Member

    Story is 650b(making trails come alive)was too much for trails to handle essentially killing them. Mtb boffins have concluded 29’s are the only wheel size to restore trails as being harder to turn they do less damage 😉

    Littleman
    Member

    Well having finally just left the 26″ world for 27.5 I hope it stays along side 29″. The ‘industry’ does seem to be pushing 29ers as the wheel size du jour, but as I ‘m 5ft0 I physically couldn’t fit a 29er even if I wanted to. But I’m very much an anomaly sizing wise. Should I stock up on 27.5 tyres now?

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