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Old 06-25-11, 03:51 PM   #1
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Say goodbye to 26" wheels (mostly)

Sit tight. It's coming no matter if you like it or not.
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Old 06-25-11, 04:08 PM   #2
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I almost thought that a couple years ago. But nahhh. There have been a few World Cup wins on 26" this year so I don't think they'll fade like you think they will.

Nice 26" rims with brake tracks are getting a bit scarce. That makes me sad.
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Old 06-25-11, 04:22 PM   #3
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I can hardly wait for someone to start producing a 32er.

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Old 06-25-11, 04:25 PM   #4
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It came from a good source. You know the reports of certain bike shops only stocking 29ers? Don't be shocked if it starts happening everywhere in the US in the not too distant future. I'm not pleased about it, but nearly everyone is on board and there's no stopping it now.
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Old 06-25-11, 04:26 PM   #5
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36" all the way, bro.

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Old 06-25-11, 04:28 PM   #6
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It came from a good source. You know the reports of certain bike shops only stocking 29ers? Don't be shocked if it starts happening everywhere in the US.
I haven't been to a niner only shop yet. I reckon I can always get 26" bikes from Asia if I have to. How many Asians can comfortably ride a 29er? I reckon Trek WSDs (and other brands' ladies lines will always be available in 26" also).

I did see my first Walmart 29er a couple weeks ago.
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Old 06-25-11, 05:24 PM   #7
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You know the reports of certain bike shops only stocking 29ers? Don't be shocked if it starts happening everywhere in the US in the not too distant future. I'm not pleased about it, but nearly everyone is on board and there's no stopping it now.
Everyone is on board??
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Old 06-25-11, 07:41 PM   #8
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From what I was told, there will be a high-end and specialty 26" market, but for the average person that walks into a typical bike shop with $800 to spend, (most shops that carry bikes from the big three-Trek, Specialized, Giant) they will have no choice in wheel size.
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Old 06-25-11, 07:42 PM   #9
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I haven't been to a niner only shop yet.
There's already a few of them here in Atlanta.
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Old 06-25-11, 09:09 PM   #10
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From what I was told, there will be a high-end and specialty 26" market, but for the average person that walks into a typical bike shop with $800 to spend, (most shops that carry bikes from the big three-Trek, Specialized, Giant) they will have no choice in wheel size.

Yeah, but a couple years after that mainstream saturation happens, and all the fake MTBs at Walmart are niners then niners will be considered fredly, so pendulum will swing back and a bulk of the market will want 26" again.

I just bought an 8-speed cassette a couple months ago. Back in 2001 I didn't know if that was gonna be possible in 10 years.

Fingers crossed for mid market 26er choices throughout.
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Old 06-25-11, 09:13 PM   #11
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Seems like the niner action is primarily hardtail. What about the full sus guys? What's the longest travel 29" fork?
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Old 06-25-11, 09:25 PM   #12
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I hadn't visited a LBS here in town until today.

Me: (looking around dumbfounded at all the entry level bikes on the showroom)
"Ya got any high end bikes in stock?"

Dude: "Not right now. We're getting some in later."

Me: "What ya got on order?"

Dude: "Pretty much all carbon 29'er stuff."

...looking even more dumbfounded...gave a courtesy smile...turned...& threw up in my mouth a little.
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Old 06-26-11, 02:17 AM   #13
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It came from a good source. You know the reports of certain bike shops only stocking 29ers? Don't be shocked if it starts happening everywhere in the US in the not too distant future. I'm not pleased about it, but nearly everyone is on board and there's no stopping it now.
"ONOZ! I better hoard 26er parts along with my 8 speed stuff!" is my guess as to the reply you're trying to elicit. With 9 speed components being the norm and the recent introduction of 10spd, the availability of 8 speed parts hasn't gone the way of the dodo. Not everyone is on board with the "latest and greatest". Lot's of people in the "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" camp.

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From what I was told, there will be a high-end and specialty 26" market, but for the average person that walks into a typical bike shop with $800 to spend, (most shops that carry bikes from the big three-Trek, Specialized, Giant) they will have no choice in wheel size.
Please let me borrow your crystal ball or consult your soothsayer so I can check to see whether the money I'm pumping into the lottery will amount to any riches. Seriously, do you really believe what this person told you? 26ers have been the standard since the beginning. It's a more versatile platform than 29ers for most folks. It's not going away anytime soon. Maybe in 50years, or a hundred, who knows. I'll be pushing daisies by then so it won't matter.

SVR - do you work for Fox News? cuz that is some sensational "reporting" (that's me being facetious)

*disclosure* I own 26ers and 29er in both HT and FS, a 650B mtb and a 700c roadbike and I enjoy them all.
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Old 06-26-11, 05:26 AM   #14
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"ONOZ! I better hoard 26er parts along with my 8 speed stuff!" is my guess as to the reply you're trying to elicit. With 9 speed components being the norm and the recent introduction of 10spd, the availability of 8 speed parts hasn't gone the way of the dodo. Not everyone is on board with the "latest and greatest". Lot's of people in the "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" camp.
Not quite what I meant. The high end 26" bikes and parts will still be around. It's the average local bike shop that is reluctant to stock the same thing in two sizes. The average LBS customer buys a $300-$600 MTB, and is usually confused by the difference in wheel sizes. Most shops only want to stock one or the other, so 29 wins out because it's new and fresh, and sets the LBS apart from the big box retailers. It's purely a business decision.

Google "Why 29er". The misinformation campaign has begun.
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Old 06-26-11, 06:27 AM   #15
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Beware gentle souls, as an adjunct to this insideous marketing conspiracy, industry sponsored "black ops" teams will soon be flying in (that's right, in black helicopters) armed with night-vision, bolt cutters, and angle grinders. Their mission: to seek out and eliminate (with extreme prejudice) ALL 26" MTBs. You will then be COMPELLED to buy a 29er. (and locking your bike inside will not deter them)
26ers, rise up! The resistance movement must mobilize now, before it's too late!

You have been warned.
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Old 06-26-11, 07:25 AM   #16
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The resistance is strong in Europe . Here 29ers are the exception, and are waaaaay overpriced. Same bike with 29er wheels..expect to pay 2-300 euros more. I wouldn't touch a 29er with a 20' pole simply because of the price difference. For my purposes a 26er works great!
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Old 06-26-11, 07:31 AM   #17
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26 will never go away. Can you see a slopestyle competition on big hoops? Oafish at best. DJ, DH, Park? No way.

I'm just in shock and disappointed at the shop I visited b/c it just tells me that this new town in which I live...is filled with lycra-dipped sit'n'spinner-XC types. Heck man the closest trails are in Lake City. (1/2hr)

The up-side I guess is that there's an "Action Sports Park" that was designed with DMC!
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Old 06-26-11, 10:18 AM   #18
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Haha, I know a guy who thought his Superfly 100 was the last word in XC FS bikes. Then he tried a teammate's Top Fuel

I know another guy with a SF 100 Elite who is convinced I'm some super athelete because he can't keep up with me, despite being a very well-trained racer himself. Meanwhile, I race once a week and commute 3 miles a day, that's all the training I have time for right now. I told him hey, if you were on a World-Cup-style 26" hardtail, you'd surprise yourself bro. It's disgustingly efficient. I'll get him to ride it someday and he'll realize what he's been missing.

I understand that the big bike makers would like to standardize on one adult-bike wheel size for lower manufacturing costs, but I really am not here to serve their interests.

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Old 06-26-11, 10:44 AM   #19
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Well contrary to what most are saying, svr is spot on for the Tulsa area. I want a 26" bike, and won't buy one unless I can test ride it, so that automatically counts out Specialized, as no one here has a 26 demo, and none actually had a 26" Camber in stock (3-4 mtb shops). Was pushed towards the 29er immediately. Almost the exact same thing with Giant except I may have found a Trance demo in 26.

There's a whole shop dedicated strictly to 29ers. The Trek shop was the only one not to shove a 29er in my face, but that's because I walked in and immediately stated what I wanted. They also have a 26" Fuel demo. They had one Fuel EX 8, which was the only one around that model, and the sales dude admitted if the Superfly had the same suspension as the Fuel he would have tried to sell it to me.

So as of now, yes, if you want to buy a new bike and are new into mountainbiking, you're probably going to be riding a 29er. 26" bikes are already getting hard to find here, ridiculously. I don't think they'll discontinue them any time soon, but it seems they'll be the exception on the trail before too long here.

Last edited by Bikernator; 06-26-11 at 09:37 PM. Reason: I said if the Superfly had same suspension as Trek, meant to say Fuel, obviously.
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Old 06-26-11, 11:31 AM   #20
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Retail demand will ultimately decide what is available and what isn't. If the (few) 26" bikes that remain available are flying out the door then there will always be some manufacturers who will step up and fill that demand. If not, then they won't.
I remember ten years ago tech industry analysts were predicting that high performance personal computers were a thing of the past because everyone would switch to cloud-based apps. Hasn't happened yet. Not saying it won't eventually, just that long term trends don't always take root when driven solely by corporate expedience.

If Mark Twain were alive today he might say something like, "The reports of the demise of 26" MTBs have been greatly exaggerated"

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Old 06-26-11, 12:24 PM   #21
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For those of you who have not seen Hitler's take on 26" vs. 29er :

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1jElw...e_gdata_player
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Old 06-26-11, 07:52 PM   #22
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Haha, I know a guy who thought his Superfly 100 was the last word in XC FS bikes. Then he tried a teammate's Top Fuel

I know another guy with a SF 100 Elite who is convinced I'm some super athelete because he can't keep up with me, despite being a very well-trained racer himself. Meanwhile, I race once a week and commute 3 miles a day, that's all the training I have time for right now. I told him hey, if you were on a World-Cup-style 26" hardtail, you'd surprise yourself bro. It's disgustingly efficient. I'll get him to ride it someday and he'll realize what he's been missing.

I understand that the big bike makers would like to standardize on one adult-bike wheel size for lower manufacturing costs, but I really am not here to serve their interests.
I get what your saying, I have 2 26 and 2 29ers, but I don't think its a given that if he switched to a "World-Cup-Style 26" he would have some sort of revelation and realize that he was missing all that much if anything at all and you would probably still be faster than him. If there was not a benefit for a lot of people, the 29ers would not have taken off as well as they have. A lot of pro riders have switched to 29er's and are winning they swear by them, a lot have stayed with 26s and are winning and swear by them. Fast guy and gals are fast, usually fast on anything they ride. Personally I am faster on my 29 than my 26, not a lot but checking my lap times at some different courses with different terrains, proved it, day in day put my fastest times on the 29 HT. I will be the first to admit maybe some of it is mental, I am more confident because of the feel of the 29er, I just like the feel.... up hill, down hill, flats, tight woods, rocks, but I am not going to say they are for everyone. If I get beat by a guy ( or gal...yea I will admit it..Got some fast ladies in the ATX ) or I beat them ( given we are both on quality bikes ), I am fairly sure its because its the rider not the bike. The stores may well move over to 29ers in that entry level bike as the news is saying. But in the mid range and upper end, I bet you will always have a selection, at least I hope so. There is room on the trail and in my garage for both.
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Old 06-26-11, 08:16 PM   #23
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They can have my 26'er when they pry it from my cold, dead hands.
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Old 06-26-11, 08:57 PM   #24
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The resistance is strong in Europe . Here 29ers are the exception, and are waaaaay overpriced.
Name a bike size or type that isn't way overpriced.
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Old 06-26-11, 09:00 PM   #25
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This is why I've ridden Jamis for so long. IMO one of the best bang for buck rides out there. Just gotta pick your ride wisely. Like 1st gen Parkers, 1st gen XLT stays were prone to weakness. Seems though that they end up fixing that crap. I never had another issue with the XLT after I replaced the stays.
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