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Old 04-24-06, 11:16 PM   #1
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26" vs. 29" head to head reviews!

I'm starting this thread to announce that there was a head-to-head 26'er vs. 29'er test done in the June issue of MBAction that I just downloaded.

Overall the 26'er won, but the 29'er had it's high points:

Both bikes were identical with the exception of the wheel size and fork size. For the 29" bike, they used a Gary Fisher Paragon 29'er and for it's competition built a same spec 26'er Paragon, using the HKEK frame which is the same only built around the 26" geometry. They tested them side-by-side.

29'er--26'er
Weight-26.6 lbs---25.6 lbs
Mud-26'er-Winner (29'er slower rotation packs up faster)
Overall Feel-Slower, but in a fun way---Quick, whippy, and responsive
Bumps--29'er winner by a long shot ---------
Quick/ tight Turning-- 26'er-winner (29'er cuts larger arcs)
Accelerating -Slow and Sluggish--- Winner hands down
Sprinting - Winner (already moving fast, feels natural) --- Quirky/lagging
Seated climbing - Can't get over the wheel weight --- Winner
Standing Climb -29'er has 1" longer stays / can't get weight over rear ---26'er wins
Braking - 29'er Winner ----------
Jumping - 29'er Winner more stable in the air/more control/feels more fun)
1/10mi accel. - 28.7sec --- 26.8sec
1/4mi hill climb - 31sec --- 26.6sec
1-1/4mi XC - 9min 16sec --- 8min 57sec
1/10mi DH coast - 29.6 --- 29.8

Overall for XC, the 26'er was their preference. They liked the 29er for rough terrain, obviously. They also liked it for very tall people or purist types who hate suspension bikes.

Quote:

"The 29'er makes you feel invincible over bumps & walks all over the 26'er at speed. The Paragon 29'er will never climb or accelerate as well as the 'Paragon 26'er'. Mountain bike races are won on hills. (usually climbing them)"

Last edited by ed; 04-24-06 at 11:27 PM.
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Old 12-01-10, 12:25 PM   #2
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I can't believe I started this thread!
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Old 12-01-10, 01:23 PM   #3
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I can't believe I started this thread!
Why? It's nice to see these numbers side by side.

I'm looking into a new FS and the fact that 26" climbs better may be the deciding factor for me to go with a 26.

Were these FS or Hardtail? Too lazy to google myself

And if they were tested side by side, how did they limit the differences in rider ability that may have factored into the numbers?
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Old 12-01-10, 02:43 PM   #4
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Now you went and done it! You opened another 26 vs 29 can of worms!

Most of it makes sense. Though I am surprised they liked the 29er for jumping. Wonder if BlkMrkt is listening. Not my preference, but if there's a market of people who like jumping 29ers... And did they say what about the 29er braked better? Shorter stopping distance? Better feel braking?

Jeff, the HKEK and Paragon are hardtails.
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Old 12-01-10, 02:50 PM   #5
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Well...at least my findings support my opinion...even if this thread was started 4years ago.

I also predict winning lotto numbers.



Re: Hardtails...yes, they are both basically the same bike. Same ZR'thuper'thpankin' aluminum trail hardtails. They did however forget to compare manualability, drop zone survivability, anti-gravity tweakability, and general gnar'shredableness'ability'ization.
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Old 12-01-10, 03:25 PM   #6
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Holy crap! I didn't notice the original date. No wonder I didn't find that article in the June 2010 MBA table of contents. Sheesh .
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Old 12-01-10, 03:33 PM   #7
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Yeah, my next bike will be an Epic Carbon. Only question remaining is whether it'll be a 29er, or a 26er. Still leaning towards 26...

Looking for dual suspension, light weight, for East Coast XC riding and local racing. Already have the Enduro for any heavy duty riding, or all day epics...

Interesting results for sure...
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Old 12-01-10, 03:38 PM   #8
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Surprised no one responded to this thread back in '06. Guess 29ers weren't trendy enough yet.
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Old 12-01-10, 04:07 PM   #9
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Surprised no one responded to this thread back in '06.
I think it just got lost in the blizzard of Ed's threads - - he used to start 5 a day

Hop in though, and we'll go post some . . . .




BTW, another interesting article and more food for thought:

http://singletrack.competitor.com/20...l-is-dead_3050
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Old 12-01-10, 04:10 PM   #10
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My 29er can put out 1.21 giggawatts, but the 26er only goes to 1.20. I'm screwed.
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Old 12-01-10, 05:49 PM   #11
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I went to the MBA website and tried to see if they had an online version of it. No wonder I came up empty handed!
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Old 12-01-10, 06:22 PM   #12
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I wonder if there's anything out there that would be a 3-way head to head to head, 29er, 26er & Surly Pugsley ? I have a 26er and really don't feel a need to replace it, but if the day ever came to make a decision ? Also wonder what has changed in 4 years that might have narrowed or eliminated gaps for the 29er as disadvantages ?
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Old 12-01-10, 09:06 PM   #13
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What would the difference be between Accelerating and Sprinting? Wouldn't these two tests be just a like if started on a line??



...maybe thats a dumb question.
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Old 12-01-10, 09:15 PM   #14
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Even more food for thought: http://singletrack.competitor.com/20...-a-touch_10872
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Old 12-01-10, 09:57 PM   #15
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I really liked that article. I'm not a fan of 29er's, but I do recognize that they do have their place.
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Old 12-02-10, 08:10 PM   #16
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i wonder if the "new geometry" that people claim to have figured out and improved tire designs, forks, etc. would make much (if any) difference in the results?

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Old 12-02-10, 08:54 PM   #17
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