Winter Cycling - Marin Hamilton 29er for winter riding?
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06-20-08, 09:11 PM
How do the 29ers handle snow and ice? I've been wondering about Marin's Hamilton.
I'm interested in trying single speed or fixed gear next winter, and the Hamilton comes with a flip/flop hub. I also like that it comes without suspension. It lacks a front disk brake but it does have the mount for it.
Has anyone got any winter experience with the Hamilton or something similar?
07-07-08, 01:17 PM
Not sure what would change in the winter, but I'm currently using a Hamilton as a city/errand bike and it's nice - comfortable generally upright frame design (some further-swept bars would be good though) and the gearing tops out at a slow 15ish mph but handles hills well. The stock tires have a shallow tread pattern - very street oriented - but handle rain well enough (a positive in Seattle). For snow you might want something with a bit deeper tread. Frame/build quality is quite nice as well.
If you live in an area without hills you'll want a larger crank sprocket - I'll probably try a 44T to see how that affects the speed vs. climbing ability.
07-11-08, 06:22 PM
I'ld imagine the 29er would float better through snow. Which can be a blessing or a curse depending on conditions. I believe Peter White has studs for 'em. Next problem would be fendering those wheels. BTW this winter I'm running my MTB fixed + W240's.
07-12-08, 12:35 PM
I think that a 29er is a great idea for riding in snow. On ice I don't think it is as big of an advantage, but it certainly won't slow you down any. Where I live (fairbanks, alaska) most of the winter commuters/riders have switched over to 29er's in the last few years, and we ride in snow about 6 months a year. I just finished building a Kona Unit 2-9 for this years winter riding myself. There are some studs available for them if you need to use studs, and there is a good selection of large knobby tires for snow now too.
07-14-08, 01:58 PM
Thanks for the replies. I'm torn between rebuilding an old mountain bike into a fixed gear, or picking up a 29er.
09-24-08, 03:54 PM
I'm going to resurrect this thread to see how the bike turned out.
I am in a bit of a debate with myself as well concerning a winter commuter (only going to need it to handle snow/ice for a couple of months, probably, and then it would be an all the time commuter). I have a fixed gear (which I would happily use, but it won't accept larger tires), so I appreciate the simplicity and ease of maintenance of this bike, but I'm also concerned that I'll regret not getting a geared bike (like the Kona Smoke or the like) once the winds in MN kick up.
09-25-08, 09:35 AM
I spoke to some people at my LBS who said the 29er works best for taller people. I have no idea if this is true or not, but I decided to go with an old mountain bike. I replaced the rear hub with a front disk hub and bolted an ISO cog to the disk mount. I just received my Power Grips yesterday. No snow yet though :mad:
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