New MTBer looking for advice on buying a bike

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    • #91254

      I am new to mountain biking and just love it. I am looking to buy a new bike and doing some research. I am 5’5" tall and weigh 130lbs. I have an opportunity to buy a barely used 2009 Cannondale 29er 4 for $650. I want to know your thoughts on this bike for a person my size. Is the 29er too big for me? Would I climb better with a 26er or a 29er. I will give up a little on handling for a better climber. Will I even notice much difference between the 26 and 29er on climbs.

      Any feedback would be greatly appreciated.

    • #91255

      I have only ridden a 29er once… but I’d say for anyone starting out should go with a 26er. The bigger wheels on the 29er will roll over smaller obstacles smoothly, but starting on a 26er will help you learn to tackle obstacles. With the smaller wheel you can get going faster quicker… so if you get stuck in a technical area you may have difficulty getting back up and rolling on your 29er – then once rolling the 29er will eat up the trail smoother than the 26er… so it’s a trade off. I think the 26er will give you a better feel for the trail and riding in general… then graduating to a 29er after getting your technique down. As for climbing, that’s more on your technique (picking a line) and your legs/lungs… no bike is going to get up the hill or over that log or through the rock garden without you. Just my thoughts… anyone out there start out riding a 29er?

    • #91256

      Gunners,
      26 vs 29er…not to sound off, but your height may preclude you from a 29er.
      I’d suggest you get a proper fit, but in my understanding the 29er geometry play out at 5’8 on up.
      I ride both, a 26 Blur LT2 and a 29 Orbea Alma World Cup hard tail.
      They both have their pros and cons, and if your starting out, I’d suggest a hard tail to make you a good rider and develop your skill.
      29ers climb great and slog through sand amazing and will knock the edge off of most boulders and obstacles…..BUT you do lose 1-1.5 gears due to the same 26gears on a 29inch wheel. Climbing is about legs, lungs and line.
      Go to your local bike shop and take a roll on what they’ve got to demo.
      Cheers,
      D

    • #91257

      Thank you for the feedback. I like that comment. Climbing is about Legs, Lungs and Line!

    • #91258

      I’ve got a 29er now and love it. I doubt I’ll go back to a 26er

    • #91259
      "gunnernags" wrote

      I am new to mountain biking and just love it. I am looking to buy a new bike and doing some research. I am 5’5" tall and weigh 130lbs. I have an opportunity to buy a barely used 2009 Cannondale 29er 4 for $650. I want to know your thoughts on this bike for a person my size. Is the 29er too big for me? Would I climb better with a 26er or a 29er. I will give up a little on handling for a better climber. Will I even notice much difference between the 26 and 29er on climbs.

      Any feedback would be greatly appreciated.

      I have 2011 Trail SL4 29er which is pretty much same bike, and I love it and I just never felt comfortable on any 26er I owned, but than I am 6.2 and i hav long legs and arms and short torso ;). Depends on how you are build some things will work for you and some wont I would say always get the best bike that feel just right for your. I always hated riding my 26er thanks god I cam accross 29er or I would be still suffering and be hardly ever riding ;).

    • #91260

      I know a chick who is 5’5 and rolls a 29er and wouldn’t roll anything else. Yes she did ride 26ers but once on the 9er she gave up the 26ers… Just make sure you get fitted properly and find a LBS that will allow you to demo some bikes on the trails. My LBS has XC, AM, 9ers, FS and HT for demos..
      BTW I roll a 26er so I’m not trying to push a 9er, I’m just saying…

    • #91261

      OP was almost a year ago, hopefully he/she has found a bike by now. 😃

    • #91262
      "maddslacker" wrote

      OP was almost a year ago, hopefully he/she has found a bike by now. 😃

      ueah lets hope so.. 😆

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