What are the major determining factors behind the choosing a 700C over a 26" wheel for road touring? I have heard a lot of argument pro and con, mostly related to the standover height of a 26"-wheeled bike and therefore the ability to accomodate shorter riders. This is not a factor that would affect me but am curious what the advantages/disadvantages are from a mechanical point of view.
Is there a noticeable difference in wheel strength due to the smaller diameter?
How does the reduced diameter affect one's mileage or is this so minimal as to be inconsequential?
Also, it seems that bikes on a 26" platform are sized a bit smaller for a given rider than if the bike was for 700C wheels. Is this a fair observation and, if so, is this a factor worth considering as it pertains to frame stress under load as a smaller frame usually has less flex?
Thanks in advance for the feedback. The results will in fact be a contributor to the final decision...BLT or BLT-X.