slack, long-travel, pedal-able 29ers?

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11/22/2015 8:22 AM

hard to believe it's been 6 years since steber experimented with a 29er DH bike.




we're hearing rumors of some brands working on slack (like DH slack) long-travel (170, 180mm) 29ers that are made to pedal. is this the future? developing a 29er platform means a 27.5+ swap could be an option. the Enduro 29 has been a hit for a lot of people. can they go bigger and slacker and remain functional?

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11/22/2015 9:11 AM

If I could still ride I'd be on one and able to tell you. I have a buddy at Santa Cruz who has said that there is a lot of internal pressure (By employees that is.) to make the Tall Boy LT the next redesign. They may well already have test mules by now I would think. I'd love to see a bike like this built up with a Boxxer with a Pike Charger damper in it. Ultimate enduro bike?

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11/22/2015 9:12 AM

I remember hearing Steve Smith say something to the effect of "I'm here to win races. If it's faster I don't care what size the wheels are." I think it was a few years ago, and a lot has happened with long travel 29ers in the past few years. Additionally, a lot of the wheel size purists (including myself) have come to the realization that change isn't that bad of a thing.

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11/22/2015 9:15 AM

Whether a tool is functional simply depends on the task you want it to be used for. Thus, depending on the trails such bikes could surely be functional; I probably would not want to ride it on an alpine goat path though.
Also that's why I find questions about this or that type of bike, wheel diameter or bottom bracket interface being better, pretty pointless, when asked in a such generality. It just depends what you want to do with it.

Still, I would like to see (and try) such bikes, just out of curiosity for what they might be able to achieve in terms of ride stability.
So, what brand is it that you're referring to?

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11/22/2015 9:32 AM

harandre wrote:

Whether a tool is functional simply depends on the task you want it to be used for. Thus, depending on the trails such bikes could surely be functional; I probably would not want to ride it on an alpine goat path though.
Also that's why I find questions about this or that type of bike, wheel diameter or bottom bracket interface being better, pretty pointless, when asked in a such generality. It just depends what you want to do with it.

Still, I would like to see (and try) such bikes, just out of curiosity for what they might be able to achieve in terms of ride stability.
So, what brand is it that you're referring to?

of course not for a bike path, but the question is more of all-around capability with wheels/tires that big, angles that slack and suspension that long. a design like this is definitely a gravity-oriented enduro bike but could it just be too much for anything other than pedaling up a fire road? that's what i'm really curious about.

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11/22/2015 9:49 AM

I dont know for DH ( which i dont ride) but for everithing else that new NukeProof AM mega 29er looks great. That i have enough money for new bike that would be my choice.

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11/22/2015 10:26 AM

Finally a forum about my dream bike! A 160mm 29er Frame, 330mm BB height, 65 degree head angle, 440 chainstays, and a 510mm reach would be perfect for me. Imagine a bike that stable and fast on gnarly trails!
Interestingly my 2016 Stumpjumper XXL is kind of like this alebeit with less travel and slighlty steeper. The HA is currently 67 but I'm planning to use an angleset to get it down to 65.5. Then it'll be ready to rip until this beast comes out

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11/22/2015 10:39 AM

@sspomer: What I've been trying to say is, that if you ride Enduro in SoCal, such a bike might be top of the list, but maybe not, if you're riding Enduro in the Italian Alps.

It wont be a very good allrounder, but perfect for fast and open trails. I think current 29ers are still a fair bit from " too much for anything other than pedaling up a fire road". But of course it depends on what exactly you're referring to by long and slack. The Intense above might be too much for most trails; the new Nukeproof could surely go a bit longer by going slacker.

C. Porter claims to have found the limits for trail bike geometry. However, this may be true for his riding style and type of trails. I also wonder why - except for very few frames like the new Rune - headangles for 650b bikes haven't gotten a lot slacker recently.

I personally think that 180mm would be overkill for a 29er also in terms of required chainstay length. But to judge, it would be necessary to ride it and look at the time.

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11/22/2015 10:54 AM

harandre wrote:

@sspomer: What I've been trying to say is, that if you ride Enduro in SoCal, such a bike might be top of the list, but maybe not, if you're riding Enduro in the Italian Alps.

It wont be a very good allrounder, but perfect for fast and open trails. I think current 29ers are still a fair bit from " too much for anything other than pedaling up a fire road". But of course it depends on what exactly you're referring to by long and slack. The Intense above might be too much for most trails; the new Nukeproof could surely go a bit longer by going slacker.

C. Porter claims to have found the limits for trail bike geometry. However, this may be true for his riding style and type of trails. I also wonder why - except for very few frames like the new Rune - headangles for 650b bikes haven't gotten a lot slacker recently.

I personally think that 180mm would be overkill for a 29er also in terms of required chainstay length. But to judge, it would be necessary to ride it and look at the time.

I think a long travel 29er would work as well as, if not better than, anything else even in the tight and awkward stuff provided you're tall enough to boss the bike around. Rotational inertia also isn't a problem if you run big enough brakes, yes these weigh more with 200mm discs but the benefits outweigh any negatives.

The Mojo Geometron (Chris Porter designed bike) has been converted to be tested as a 29er. Read more here: http://www.bikeradar.com/gear/article/mojo-nicolais-geometron-plots-a-future-for-mountain-bike-design-45700/

I also agree that 180mm is too much for a 29er, given that the bigger wheels effectively add 20mm of travel roughly 160 is a better number for this kind of bike.

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11/22/2015 10:56 AM

Evil's new wreckoning should shake the market pretty hard. Solid pedaling from the delta link, 430 +- cs's,65 ish hta and compatibility with 160-180 forks.should be interesting!

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11/22/2015 10:57 AM

...also the "in the bike feeling" that Steber refers to might be pretty valuable for rough and steep bits, because you don't get that "over the bars feeling" that we all know from back in the days. But it is just not as good if you ride flatter sections or trails with a lot of built berms, as your leverage on the wheels is reduced, which makes it harder to apply pressure, if the bottom bracket is too far below the wheel axle. So it's all about finding the right design choices for the stuff you want the bike to perform good at.

The production bikes are unfortunately usualy designed for average riders on average trails.

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11/22/2015 11:04 AM

harandre wrote:

...also the "in the bike feeling" that Steber refers to might be pretty valuable for rough and steep bits, because you don't get that "over the bars feeling" that we all know from back in the days. But it is just not as good if you ride flatter sections or trails with a lot of built berms, as your leverage on the wheels is reduced, which makes it harder to apply pressure, if the bottom bracket is too far below the wheel axle. So it's all about finding the right design choices for the stuff you want the bike to perform good at.

The production bikes are unfortunately usualy designed for average riders on average trails.

I agree it doesn't feel as good to have a low bb on flatter sections of trail, like you said it's about matching the bike capability to the trails you ride. Hopefully people won't buy a monster truck like this if they ride flatter or less technical trails.

On a side note it is possible to make a bike with that much BB drop more manouverable simply by raising the bars, they help further exaggerate the in the bike feeling but also give more leverage over your angle of lean. Long live high bars and low BBs

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11/22/2015 11:42 AM

@AGR97: Sure, raising the handlebar helps with that, but at the same makes it harder to put pressure on the front wheel.
...and might require you to change your suspension settings, but you then might just stuff in a few tokens to solve that (see the pretty good blogpost Team Robot had on that issue).

Point is, if you change something on your bike to achieve X, you might need to change a lot of other stuff too because otherwise you might loose too much on Y and Z.

Yet again, I hope 29ers will get a lot slacker and longer than most of them are right now.

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11/22/2015 12:46 PM

harandre wrote:

@AGR97: Sure, raising the handlebar helps with that, but at the same makes it harder to put pressure on the front wheel.
...and might require you to change your suspension settings, but you then might just stuff in a few tokens to solve that (see the pretty good blogpost Team Robot had on that issue).

Point is, if you change something on your bike to achieve X, you might need to change a lot of other stuff too because otherwise you might loose too much on Y and Z.

Yet again, I hope 29ers will get a lot slacker and longer than most of them are right now.

Very good points, I also wish for longer and slacker 29ers.

I am a bit impartial on the bar height thing because I like my bars so high, and I agree it's all about compromise but most people in my eyes have their bars way too low for their needs. Plus a skilled rider can work a high bar height and still corner well (Look at Fabien Barel's Mondrakers of past and his original Canyon Enduro bike, any bike Nico Lau rides, and Sam Hill's bike to see high bars on pro bikes.

But that is another topic. Long, Low, and Slack 29ers should be available to those that want them!

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11/22/2015 2:34 PM

I ride an Spesh Enduro 29 in size large. I'm 6ft 2" and long-limbed and whilst the bike is undoubtedly fast and fun, it does get hard to handle on tight trails and even technical climbs due to it's size. Compared side by side with a Large 27.5 Giant Glory, the Enduro is both longer and the bar height is taller (with one 5mm stacker and sixc carbon risers on the Enduro). It is an absolute horse of a bike and I would say it's at the limit of sizing to be fun and rideable.

The reach on the Enduro is nice and roomy but there's no way I'd want to go slacker ie longer in the wheelbase. I really don't see the point, unless it's for pure downhill, then you might as well be on a downhill bike. So are we talking about 29" downhill bikes that you can ride uphill? Why don't those guys just put a 1x11 setup on a dh bike if that's their thing?

A long, slack 29er should be so compromised in a lot of areas that it wouldn't make much sense in my opinion.

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11/22/2015 2:36 PM

A little birdy tells me that Mojo are experiementing with a 29er version of their incredible Geometron... Surely that is the ultimate 29er? Exact numbers are still to be finalised but apparently H/A is around 63 degrees with a 160mm fork, it has 155mm rear travel and a wheelbase similar to a "Longest" size 650b Geometron (chainstays ended up a similar length). Look out for more on this in the mags!!!

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11/22/2015 3:36 PM
Edited Date/Time: 11/22/2015 3:37 PM

In the last 3 seasons I've ridden a 26, 29 and a 27.5 and in my personal opinion the 29 is better in every situation for even the tech riding here in BC. I had a 6inch travel 27.5 last season and although it "felt" faster on the tech and DH the race clock never lies and it was just not. I'm jacked to be going back to the 29 next season and I think you will see a lot more great riding 29's coming in the next little while as the geo for these bikes is getting better and better.

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Is it friday yet?

11/22/2015 4:02 PM

gbil wrote:

Evil's new wreckoning should shake the market pretty hard. Solid pedaling from the delta link, 430 +- cs's,65 ish hta and compatibility with 160-180 forks.should be interesting!

A rolling proto of that bike is now out in the wild and a friend got to take it down a local gravity trail here in the PNW. By his informed account, it's an absolute beast. He surprised me by saying that he'd make it his go-to do-it-all rig.

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Eat. Ride. Sleep. Repeat.

11/22/2015 4:02 PM

What about this thing, its older than the Intense


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11/22/2015 4:13 PM

Balfaboy wrote:

In the last 3 seasons I've ridden a 26, 29 and a 27.5 and in my personal opinion the 29 is better in every situation for even the tech riding here in BC. I had a 6inch travel 27.5 last season and although it "felt" faster on the tech and DH the race clock never lies and it was just not. I'm jacked to be going back to the 29 next season and I think you will see a lot more great riding 29's coming in the next little while as the geo for these bikes is getting better and better.

I resisted the notion that 26" was dead for long enough: truly capable trailworthy 29ers are here. I just ordered a Remedy 9.8 29 after a great experience at a Trek demo day. For me, the geometry is dialed and the suspension is phenomenal. It doesn't hurt that the bike is also about four pounds lighter than the rig it's replacing (SB66). Bring on the big hoops!

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Eat. Ride. Sleep. Repeat.

11/22/2015 4:17 PM

Big Bird wrote:

If I could still ride I'd be on one and able to tell you. I have a buddy at Santa Cruz who has said that there is a lot of internal pressure (By employees that is.) to make the Tall Boy LT the next redesign. They may well already have test mules by now I would think. I'd love to see a bike like this built up with a Boxxer with a Pike Charger damper in it. Ultimate enduro bike?

You had me until you mentioned a Boxxer. Why wouldn't a 160mm travel Charger-equpped Pike (or Lyrik for that matter) work in this situation? The limited manueverability of a Boxxer disqualifies it from enduro use, in my book. I've only participated in a half dozen races of that format but more importantly, looking to the pro field, no one is campaigning a DH fork. 36s, Lefty Max, and Pikes seem to be working well for the top athletes.

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Eat. Ride. Sleep. Repeat.

11/22/2015 4:32 PM

i agree that 29ers are definatley very capable bikes, fast and stable. I'm far from a 29er hater. But for me riding isn't about the clock. I ride gravity for fun and small wheels = fun, so Personally, I have no interest in a long travel 29er what so ever.

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11/22/2015 4:58 PM

tetopluz wrote:

What about this thing, its older than the Intense


haha that's right! but alex has always been way ahead of the times.

here's the full gallery w/ audio
http://www.vitalmtb.com/photos/features/BCDs-Carbon-29er-Downhill-Bike-from-2007,3771/BCDs-Carbon-29er-DH-Bike-from-2007,36005/sspomer,2

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11/22/2015 5:01 PM
Edited Date/Time: 11/22/2015 5:02 PM

syngltrkmnd wrote:

You had me until you mentioned a Boxxer. Why wouldn't a 160mm travel Charger-equpped Pike (or Lyrik for that matter) work in this situation? The limited manueverability of a Boxxer disqualifies it from enduro use, in my book. I've only participated in a half dozen races of that format but more importantly, looking to the pro field, no one is campaigning a DH fork. 36s, Lefty Max, and Pikes seem to be working well for the top athletes.

Just an old dream of mine from the days of creaky steer tubes. Back in my early downhill racing days (When a 4x4 bike was the norm.) I pretty much only rode one bike,up, down and across. It was a Heckler X with a DHO and a 48 tooth MRP. As travel got longer I've always wanted to keep a similar bike. The easy drop in nature of the Charger cartridge (Though I guess you'd have to shorten the air spring too. Better ask Camp.) makes the Boxxer the perfect opportunity. Can't I dream?

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11/22/2015 5:34 PM

Intersecting topic to come upon after coming back from a killer ride this afternoon on my Canfield Riot. It's 140mm both ends. The trails I rode today have been around since the early 2000's. Lots of skinnies, tight turns into rutted/root/ rock shutes. Drops ranging from 2-8ft. These trails were built when 26" was the only option and riders ran 7-8" bikes, and still do. I came from a Chilcotin and rode the the chilly on the same trails. In simple comparison the Riot is a Chicotin on steroids. It's more nimble, hits just as hard in the drop department but absolutely stomps chilly in different (traction instantly comes to mind.) ways. It kinda reminds me of my old Canfiled The One.

My Riot is full coil, built for when the trails point down. Given that, I can't imagine that a 29er with more than 160mm would be like. What would a 180mm 29er used for? Not trail riding.

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11/22/2015 5:44 PM

Oz_Taylor wrote:

I ride an Spesh Enduro 29 in size large. I'm 6ft 2" and long-limbed and whilst the bike is undoubtedly fast and fun, it does get hard to handle on tight trails and even technical climbs due to it's size. Compared side by side with a Large 27.5 Giant Glory, the Enduro is both longer and the bar height is taller (with one 5mm stacker and sixc carbon risers on the Enduro). It is an absolute horse of a bike and I would say it's at the limit of sizing to be fun and rideable.

The reach on the Enduro is nice and roomy but there's no way I'd want to go slacker ie longer in the wheelbase. I really don't see the point, unless it's for pure downhill, then you might as well be on a downhill bike. So are we talking about 29" downhill bikes that you can ride uphill? Why don't those guys just put a 1x11 setup on a dh bike if that's their thing?

A long, slack 29er should be so compromised in a lot of areas that it wouldn't make much sense in my opinion.

I've got an Enduro 29er, and I swapped out the yoke (the Y shaped piece) that connects to the rear shock. If you run the one from the 650b Enduro, it slacks out the bike ~ 1.5 degrees, and lowers the BB about 0.5 inches. So good. It cost me $30, and the improvement in handling is huge.

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11/22/2015 6:01 PM

Balfaboy wrote:

In the last 3 seasons I've ridden a 26, 29 and a 27.5 and in my personal opinion the 29 is better in every situation for even the tech riding here in BC. I had a 6inch travel 27.5 last season and although it "felt" faster on the tech and DH the race clock never lies and it was just not. I'm jacked to be going back to the 29 next season and I think you will see a lot more great riding 29's coming in the next little while as the geo for these bikes is getting better and better.

syngltrkmnd wrote:

I resisted the notion that 26" was dead for long enough: truly capable trailworthy 29ers are here. I just ordered a Remedy 9.8 29 after a great experience at a Trek demo day. For me, the geometry is dialed and the suspension is phenomenal. It doesn't hurt that the bike is also about four pounds lighter than the rig it's replacing (SB66). Bring on the big hoops!

Great choice on the Remedy! I looked at that bike a lot before deciding on the stumpjumper 29. I owned a 2014 stumpy and I have yet to find a bike that I like better.

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Is it friday yet?

11/22/2015 6:02 PM

Oz_Taylor wrote:

I ride an Spesh Enduro 29 in size large. I'm 6ft 2" and long-limbed and whilst the bike is undoubtedly fast and fun, it does get hard to handle on tight trails and even technical climbs due to it's size. Compared side by side with a Large 27.5 Giant Glory, the Enduro is both longer and the bar height is taller (with one 5mm stacker and sixc carbon risers on the Enduro). It is an absolute horse of a bike and I would say it's at the limit of sizing to be fun and rideable.

The reach on the Enduro is nice and roomy but there's no way I'd want to go slacker ie longer in the wheelbase. I really don't see the point, unless it's for pure downhill, then you might as well be on a downhill bike. So are we talking about 29" downhill bikes that you can ride uphill? Why don't those guys just put a 1x11 setup on a dh bike if that's their thing?

A long, slack 29er should be so compromised in a lot of areas that it wouldn't make much sense in my opinion.

What about 650b bikes like the Reign and Strive that have longer wheelbases than the E29?

Personally I like long travel 29" but if we're talking ultimate speed it won't be long before someone makes some proper 650b+ tires and it'll be game over for 650b and 29".

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11/22/2015 7:00 PM

AGR97 wrote:

Finally a forum about my dream bike! A 160mm 29er Frame, 330mm BB height, 65 degree head angle, 440 chainstays, and a 510mm reach would be perfect for me. Imagine a bike that stable and fast on gnarly trails!
Interestingly my 2016 Stumpjumper XXL is kind of like this alebeit with less travel and slighlty steeper. The HA is currently 67 but I'm planning to use an angleset to get it down to 65.5. Then it'll be ready to rip until this beast comes out

Good luck, the big S uses a proprietary head set.

They Probably are going to refresh the enduro 29 and I hope make it a ton slacker

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11/22/2015 7:06 PM

Oz_Taylor wrote:

I ride an Spesh Enduro 29 in size large. I'm 6ft 2" and long-limbed and whilst the bike is undoubtedly fast and fun, it does get hard to handle on tight trails and even technical climbs due to it's size. Compared side by side with a Large 27.5 Giant Glory, the Enduro is both longer and the bar height is taller (with one 5mm stacker and sixc carbon risers on the Enduro). It is an absolute horse of a bike and I would say it's at the limit of sizing to be fun and rideable.

The reach on the Enduro is nice and roomy but there's no way I'd want to go slacker ie longer in the wheelbase. I really don't see the point, unless it's for pure downhill, then you might as well be on a downhill bike. So are we talking about 29" downhill bikes that you can ride uphill? Why don't those guys just put a 1x11 setup on a dh bike if that's their thing?

A long, slack 29er should be so compromised in a lot of areas that it wouldn't make much sense in my opinion.

fast_bastard wrote:

I've got an Enduro 29er, and I swapped out the yoke (the Y shaped piece) that connects to the rear shock. If you run the one from the 650b Enduro, it slacks out the bike ~ 1.5 degrees, and lowers the BB about 0.5 inches. So good. It cost me $30, and the improvement in handling is huge.

What size frame and what brand rear shock? I want to do the same, but others say the frame would contact on theirs

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