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26er,27.5er or 29er ?

27-Mar-2013

Nowadays , MTB riders can have 3 choices --26er frame , 27.5er frame and 29er 
frame . Which one is more suitable for you ? There are different views from the 

feedback .

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The 26er

Pros:  Excellent on steep and stepped climbs. Easy to accelerate out of momentum 
sapping situations. Braking was strongest, especially at the bottom of steep 
descents. By far the most responsive to pumping the trail. A light feeling that 

encourages the rider to hop over or around obstacles.

Cons:  Descending is intimidating, especially after spending time on the other two 
wheel sizes.This bike requires more rider input and a bigger commitment. Rider 
position has a bigger effect on how the bike handles and responds. While a rider 
can “roll” a techie section on the larger wheels, the 26er rider has to attack and
maintain enough speed to stay on top of the ruts, rocks and flat-edged bumps. 

The rider has to work on looking ahead, as the 26er places the rider lower over 

the front.

 

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The 27.5er

Pros: The bike has a nimble feel that is way closer to the 26er than the 29er,but it 
doesn’t require the rider to work as hard. Your body position always feels neutral. 
You can pump the 27.5er along the trail, and when the trail heads downward, it allows 
the rider to remain relaxed. You don’t need to attack rough sections. These wheels do 
a good job of staying on top of the rough stuff, and the front end goes where you want 

it to go.


Cons: We couldn’t come up with a ride negative. It doesn’t steer as fast as a 26er, but 
we never found a trail so tight that this made a difference. It didn’t roll over the rough 
sections as smoothly as the 29er, but again, it wasn’t a big enough difference to put 

the 27.5 rider off the wheel of the 29er.


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The 29er


Pros: The big wheels are great for descending. They smooth out nasty trail that 
would have you puckered on the 26er. The added confidence inspires you to 
remain more relaxed as the wheels float over rocky terrain. The big hoops 
offer the best traction of the bunch, both in corners and on loose climbs. This 
bike requires the least amount of body English to stay hooked up (going up or 
down). Crewers noted they remained seated longer in the 29er. Once up to speed, 
the bike holds momentum well --and holding momentum is what the 29er is all 

about.


Cons:   Getting up to cruising speed takes more effort. Steep climbs or regaining 
speed following a momentum- zapping misstep is noticeably tougher. The only 
plus here is out-of- the saddle efforts work great because the rear tire maintains 
traction. The large wheels don’t respond as well to pumping the trail, and lofting 
the wheel requires more effort. This bike doesn’t have that lively squirt of acceleration 
you feel on both the 26er and 27.5er when working the backside of a whoop. The 

larger rotor up front wasn’t enough to give this bike the braking power we wanted.

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