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PostPosted: Thu Aug 01, 2013 8:43 pm 
Retro Guru
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Joined: Mon Feb 07, 2011 1:14 am
Posts: 1871
Location: Kuranda DH circa 1991
giant have just released details of an extensive range of 27.5 (650b) bikes. wheels getting smaller again, perhaps the result of the normalisation process? ie go silly big for a while (29) then realise thats actually not ideal, come back to the middle ground? (650b).

anyway...i like the look of the hardtail range. i would ride one of them.

http://www.giant-bicycles.com/en-au/new ... ine/16864/


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 02, 2013 9:01 am 
Sabrina the Teenage Witch
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Joined: Fri Jan 25, 2008 2:23 pm
Posts: 720
Location: Mammoths deserve to be cloned. From what I've seen in 'Ice Age' they are jolly good sports.
I was told recently by a dealer that most of the major players are phasing out 26"-centric stuff from 2014...

As a pragmatist, I've never found myself riding any of my 26s and thinking:

"Y'know what, these wheels are just too small."

I rode a friends Cotic Solaris 29er for an hour recenltly and that didn't feel much different.

Getting to the point where as long as I am enjoying myself, it's not really important.


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 02, 2013 9:42 am 
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Joined: Thu May 03, 2012 7:13 pm
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Location: The Cock Inn, Tillett, Herts
Well, Giant are the world's largest cycle manufacturer and they've vowed to drop 29ers from the range. They've placed their bet heavily on 650B, with every mtb in the range available in 650B for the forthcoming model year, and have already cropped a large swathe of 29ers from the range. In terms of sales Giant swamp a lot if their mainstream rivals combined, such as Spesh, Trek, etc, so its likely they'll be able to guide the market their way.

Like Jimster, I didn't notice.a significant change, possible as I've always commuted on a 700c road bike so I've been tune into the way it feels for nearly 3 decades. My biggest gripe in British conditions as how the extra tyre radius picks up so much more mud and really slows the thing down, totally negating its biggest advantage. What works in California isn't perhaps appropriate for here. I'm on the watch for a frame to build another 29er, but this'll be a fast rolling dry weather machine this time to try and capitalise on its best features.


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 02, 2013 9:47 am 
Old School Grand Master
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Joined: Tue Oct 19, 2010 9:55 am
Posts: 7058
Location: The land of Lea & Perrins
Is there enough of a difference between 27.5 and 26?


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 02, 2013 11:24 am 
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Joined: Mon Feb 07, 2011 1:14 am
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Location: Kuranda DH circa 1991
in dimension yes a 27.5 is a lot closer to a 26, than it is to 29


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 02, 2013 12:06 pm 
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Joined: Thu May 03, 2012 7:13 pm
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Location: The Cock Inn, Tillett, Herts
Prior to the recent era of 29ers, how many buyers were complaining that 26" wheels weren't good enough? I'd warrant very few.

It's not because we needed them, or because they're better, or because a significant volume of riders had voiced disquiet with 26", it was an attempt by manufacturers to create a new trend and cash in on it. Spesh the main protagonist here, but they alone simply aren't big enough to push it forward alone. I suspect Giant are and through sheer sales volume may succeed where the others didn't quite with 29. 2 or 3 years and we'll see I guess.

For my own part I'm not that fussed, so long as it works well and continues to-do so in British conditions.


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 02, 2013 1:06 pm 
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Joined: Sat Oct 03, 2009 2:37 pm
Posts: 1728
Location: UK Southwest
I think what we need next is gears, cranks hubs etc. that are specific to each different frame. Then you'd have to go to the parts department at a main dealer and ask for a rear mech for a 2009 Giant Anthem X3 (or whatever) and they'd have to look up the part number on their computer and see if they have one in stock........Can I get a gear cable for that model too whilst I'm at it?......... Front or rear?........ Rear Please....... Sorry mate we don't have that in stock but we can get it for you by Wednesday!!! :facepalm:


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 02, 2013 1:35 pm 
BoTM Winner
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Joined: Fri Dec 28, 2007 9:50 pm
Posts: 341
Location: Ontario, Canada
I like my 26" wheels with big volume tires. Call me crazy.


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 02, 2013 1:40 pm 
MacRetro rider
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Joined: Tue Mar 29, 2011 6:06 pm
Posts: 1851
Location: Roamin' in the gloamin'
Well I have to say I notice a big difference on the 29er. Dependant on where I'm riding it can be good or bad. Definitely notice a difference in rolling resistance, traction and also much better at going smoothly over roots. Bad point is that its not as flickable in tight singletrack and worse in big rocky and steep trails, but this could also the fact it's a racier frame than my 26". The 29er will never be obsolete but I've never thought it would replace 26" wheels either. I bought mine as I wanted a bike for longer, smoother rides where my full sus is less well suited.
As for 650b, they probably do perform better than 26" in the majority of cases but it doesn't mean everyone will ditch their old bikes and move on. Just look at this site as evidence. Giant are dropping other sizes in certain ranges not for performance reasons but because it gives them bulk buying power from tyre/rim manufacturers.
Most bike buyers away from the fanatical side like us don't care or understand about wheel size. My mate has a bike shop and when people come in for tyres most customers bring the old tyre in to get the same and certainly don't know the size. When it comes to buying new bikes the average buyer will go for the one they like the look of in their budget.

Baulz, the reality is your 26 with large volume tyres may well have the same rolling diameter as 650b with low volume tyres. Unless you have a fat bike, my 4.8 bud comes up way bigger than my 29er on 2.2's.


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 02, 2013 1:56 pm 
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Joined: Wed Feb 01, 2012 12:33 pm
Posts: 453
Giant look like they have it got together for 2014.
Apart from Giant pushing the 650's I think a selling point of the 650 that the 29er could never achieve is the versatility of the wheel size. Seems XC, enduro, All mountain and even DH have taken to the size. Looks to be suited to all types of use.

With a perfectly good 26er atm I'm happy wait till 2015 to go 650. As with the 29ers the first year or so was limited with tire choice/availability, geometry changes etc. etc. but maybe the 650 has more sway with manufacturers?


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