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  1. #1

    650bs What do you think

    I am thinking of getting a new frame, and would like to try a 650B,
    All the 29ers i have ridden have just been to big, but think 650s may be spot on for a short arse like myself, have also been thinking of buying some wheels, i think they would fit my frame.

    anyone else got anything planned along these lines.

  2. #2
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    I'm not sure retro fitting a bigger wheel to a smaller frame is the answer, wouldn't it mess up the geometries and all of that? Ok not by much but you'd be losing mud clearance and all that kind off stuff too, not ideal.

    I've not ridden 650b, but I do have a 29er...according to the satanic device that is Strava, I am considerably slower on the 29er. (but it feels easier to ride)

  3. #3
    Senior Member Nobby's Avatar
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    I'm considering one too Serge. Had a brief trundle on tarmac on one the LBS had built for someone and it felt far more controllable than any 29er I've looked at.

    As BHB says, just chucking the wheels into an existing frame can cause geometry issues but, so I'm led to believe, running them on a 26er frame but with a specific 650b fork rebalances the issue..

    i know I've been banging on about 'em for years - especially when 29ers started making inroads into the market - but that dates back to a bike show in the early nineties when I spoke to a couple of frame builders. Both said that 26ers had come about by default & that they would rather be building frames around the 650b wheel size which they believed was the best compromise between speed & control.

    a couple of years ago I was in the States and tried to test a 650b FS from Airborne but it was booked out for 8/9 weeks in advance. The guys in the shop were clearly fans & knew an awful lot about what was coming up from the industry i.e. RS/Fox forks, wheels & tyres. They also had a weird, but plausible, theory that the industry was looking to standardise @ 650b but it was too small a change to get anywhere so the 29er was born to persuade folk that a larger wheel was worthy of consideration. Now that there is a market, it is becoming evident that many riders feel the 29er too big but want some of the benefits of the larger size. In steps 650b as the ideal placement for both existing sizes.

    Coincidentally, the guys that were originally behind twentynineinches.com & a few of the other sites are now the driving force at 650b.com etc.

    I'm not sure i believe an industry would invent 2 markets in order to bring about a third that they'd prefer but I guess they've been selling bikes & making money all the way through & will continue to do so if the new 'standard' is widely adopted.

  4. #4
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    Unless you're going to stick different sized tyres front and rear, the only geometry changes will be a higher or lower BB depending on whether you change the wheelsize on a 26" or a 29" respectively.

    If you have the clearance, you could try sticking a larger volume tyre on a 26" to get a similar feel, I guess.

    Personally, I think the option of three different wheel sizes is simply giving riders the chance to fine tune their riding requirements, which has to be a good thing. Fuck the nay-sayers of any wheelsize...

  5. #5
    have spotted the Jamis Dragon at Evans cycles,
    it is ticking lots of boxes for me.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Nobby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by serge the seal of death View Post
    have spotted the Jamis Dragon at Evans cycles,
    it is ticking lots of boxes for me.
    You should be able to get a test from them - or maybe Bikemagic could get a couple for us to do a group test? The Scott looks mighty fine too.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Nobby's Avatar
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    I think THIS PAGE speaks volumes......

  8. #8
    ie Fox are bring the whole line available to 650Bs

  9. #9
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    Speaking to a rep' the other day apparently it was rumoured that Kona didn't want to release a 26er in 2014 ?!?!!!?

  10. #10
    Senior Member Nobby's Avatar
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    I've heard the same of Spesh too.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Eddie's Avatar
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    Quite like the idea, can't get along with 29ers, I just find the bikes feel very weird with a seemingly tiny frame suspended between cart-wheels (I'm only a wee 5'9"). Like the thought of a bit bigger wheel for the added roll though

  12. #12
    Senior Member oldnick's Avatar
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    If you put 650b wheels into a 26" bike the fork trail is lengthened.

    The effect of increased trail is more straight line stability but an increased tendency to 'flop' into a tight corner.

    A corrected fork has reduced offset to bring all this back into line, plus a bit more height to maintain clearance.

  13. #13
    Senior Member Stan's Avatar
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    I think this bloke put it quite well on the other channel;
    I think 27.5 is too close to 26 to justify a whole new standard of bike. The industry will love it as they have something to do, but the average joe will find its such a small change its barely noticeable.
    However I think the best thing to come from this might be an opening of minds, folk conceiving their own bikes rather than buying off the peg. The new wheel size illustrates that there are many valid recipes of bike, and you simply choose the right style for your terrain, your size, your style. Gone are the days of "I can't ride I a 29er as I ride Surrey hills, and they don't do singletrack" and all the other BS.
    I often use surfing as a comparison:
    Fin set up: zero fins to five fins
    Fin flex patterns
    Fin placement
    Concaves
    Templates
    Rail shape
    Step decks
    Materials and flex patterns in the board
    Tail shape
    Length
    Width
    Thickness
    Discipline and style
    There are a million variations of surfboard... And they are all good at something. And the surfing community won't tell you off for having a five fin bonzer egg, won't tell you it's no good or can't go round corners.
    Mountain bikers... Free your mind and your wheels will follow.

    However, in my line of business ours and all the other company's are finding ways to get our customers to part with their cash. The bike industry is suffering with all industry's and the need to make money prevails. 650b hasn't been proven to be here nor there in performance terms, yet here we are being routed into a revised sales channel.

    This will go one way I believe - slowly. Only the middle core (above average wage earning peeps) will contemplate jumping on a bandwagon at this price point, and the majority of those are heavily invested in 26 and might consider a 29 for a specific use (racing or SS) because there actually is a sperformance differential, or are being squeezed out of the luxury goods market. That leaves new entrants, or those ready to upgrade.

    Personally, I think you'll a trend toward see more 26's being made to last longer plus a 29 added to the shed, then perhaps by default a later upgrade to 650b by default only.

    If 1500 in spare cash landed in my lap now, I'd buy a carbon 29er HT without a shadow of a doubt.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stan View Post
    There are a million variations of surfboard... And they are all good at something. And the surfing community won't tell you off for having a five fin bonzer egg, won't tell you it's no good or can't go round corners.
    LMAOROFL etc

    Yep sounds about right for SingletrackWorld some bellend 'manager from London' spouting on about something he talks like he knows dick all about!

    Shame really as the bike stuff was quite coherent.

  15. #15
    Senior Member Stan's Avatar
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    Actually he's an (bike) industry insider from Dorset.

    I can't argue about his surfboard knowledge, obviously. Note that I wrote the stuff thats not in italics, so I accept your compliment.


  16. #16
    What a load of sh1te.

  17. #17
    Senior Member Stan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by _Dirty Karlos_ View Post
    What a load of sh1te.
    How about applying your (informed?) opinion instead of spouting some utterly useless profanity?

  18. #18
    But that is my opinion.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stan View Post
    I can't argue about his surfboard knowledge, obviously. Note that I wrote the stuff thats not in italics, so I accept your compliment.

    I agree with the 650b stuff. I'd be really interested* to see what the Downhill Community have to say on wheels? I can't see them adopting 650b? Or maybe they will.

    But the surfer bit was well off...they're bitchier than a bitchy bitchfest in bitchtown.

    *but not enough to go and read a forum thread about it or anything

  20. #20
    DH will adopt any bike size, because the pros will take the bike most suitable for the course, as shown by a 29er winning teh sea otter, which is a much more open type of DH course, for tight ones then 26 makes sense.
    people say that 650b is neither here nor their, well for me i find 29er frames to big, yep i have no problems with 26 inch bikes, but riding something different is nice.

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