The pluses of 29er over 27.5

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    • #198351

      I ride a 27.5 hardtail, and am planning on upgrading to a Specialized Camber, which has the option of 27.5 or 29. I want to get 27.5 as I know I like it, but I am thinking about maybe switching to 29er, I mostly ride fire roads, and some singletrack. Occasionally I ride some flow trails near me. What are your opinions?

    • #198387

      Ride one is my suggestion, go to a shop and ask them.  I love 29ers because they roll easier over roots, rocks and such.  Downside is the wheels are larger and have more mass so requires more effort of the line and the bike isn’t quite as nimble in the turns.  With hardtails I like them also because they ride a little smoother due to larger wheels, not as much of an issue with a full suspension like the camber.  Good luck!

    • #198388

      So basically, the 29er doesn’t let anything get in it’s way and the 27.5 is fast nippy and nimble? Would there be a huge difference in cornering? My main concerns are the corners and the jumps.. what is it like on a 29er?

    • #198394

      There are no absolutes with either, depends on the rider mostly.  29ers are faster for the most part and 27.5 is more maneuverable due to the smaller mass of the wheels.  Physics is at work here, like I said get your butt on one and try it out.  Doesn’t really matter what other opinions are, just what fits you.

    • #198399

      From a practical standpoint, if you’re planning to keep your 27.5 hardtail, it would be nice to be able to swap wheels and tires between your rigs.

    • #198431

      Good point Jeff, that’s exactly why I have a hardtail and full sus in 29.

    • #198595

      Jumps? I prefer my Yeti SB95 (29) over my Cannondale Claymore (26) at our local jump line and since i converted it to 27.5+ it really rails corners unbelievably well.

    • #198744

      Sweet.. I really can’t wait to try one on the trails..


    • #198860

      The suggestion to buy a second 27.5 based on the ability to switch out wheels only works if you have some baller wheels. Why else would you be switching back in forth? I guess if you broke a wheel you could switch too… So, what you could do is get the Camber in 27.5 and sell the stock wheels and your hardtail wheels. Then, take that cashola and build some sweet wider alloys (DT Swiss, I9, Stans Flow in 30-35mm). If not, I would probably go 29 so you have both sizes for fun.

    • #198862

      Ya I like that idea! That would probably give me the ultimate In-Between, have some of the 29 rollover advantages while still having the 27.5 quick acceleration! Well something like that!

    • #198866

      Yeah, I was thinking having wheels to cannibalize comes in handy fairly often, and having interchangeable tires and tubes is nice too. Can’t tell you how many times I’ve gone out on a ride on a 27.5 with a 29er tube and just crossed my fingers that I wouldn’t have to try to make it work. 🙂

    • #198872

      Sorry, I just read the 27.5 to 26+ review.. am I not going to be able to switch to 27.5+ with a stock 27.5?? Or do I have either option..?

    • #198919

      You will not likely be able to put 27.5+ tires on a non-boost 27.5″ frame. And only sometimes does a 27.5+ conversion work on a non-boost 29″ frame. Going 26+ on a 27.5 non-boost depends as well on each bike’s chainstay clearance.

    • #198923

      Ok, bikerboy, I actually looked up the Camber Comp 650b on Specialized website. As long as you’re looking at the same bike I am, it does have 148mm rear spacing so you can put plus size 27.5 tires on it. Has a 110mm fork too, so plus tires will work out front and rear. Specialized stocks this bike with a 29mm (inner width) Roval wheelset so I would be a little leary going bigger than a 2.8″ tire, but YMMV.

    • #198935

      Thanks a LOT! Ya I’m looking at the Comp 27.5! I will think as to whether I want to get new wheels or not.. But this helps me out a lot!

    • #198990

      This is the 2016 model.. is it still compatible?

    • #199710

      To echo what other people have said, trying it out should help you a lot. I had the opposite scenario: I had a 29er and chose to downsize to a 27.5. I did this because I am small (5’2″) and sometimes felt like I didn’t have control on the big bike, and had a really hard time getting the wheels off the ground (even with a good preload). If weight and frame-to-wheel size are not an issue for you, then you’ll likely enjoy the larger wheels.

    • #199944

      Bikerboy, it looks like the one you linked to ( has 142 mm spacing (see Technical Specs > Frame). However, boost (plus-size) spacing is 148 mm, so this is not boost-compatible.

    • #200270

      Thank you all for your help..!

    • #200954

      Still new here could someone please  explain boost compatible to me. I l think it has to do with wider wheel hubs. I.e. Longer axles.  But not sure. Thanks

    • #200956

      I have a 2017 Trek Fuel 9.8 27.5plus bike.  With 27.5 tires, you get pedal strikes galore.  With 27.5 plus its not so bad but climbing is a pain.  With 29er setup, pedal strike is no longer an issue.

      I ended up with using a 2.8″ 27.5plus tire up front and 2.4″ 29er tire in the back.

    • #200958

      Interesting! I’ve also been running my 29er with a 27.5+ up front, 29er rear for a couple months now.

      I’ve found pedal strikes have decreased (compared to 27.5+ front and rear) but honestly I miss the fat tire in the back, especially for chunky, technical trails. As far as climbing and general efficiency, honestly I haven’t been able to detect much of a difference with the 29er wheel in back but I would guess there is some performance gain…

      In any event, I plan to go back to 27.5+ all around soon.

    • #201113

      How much will a 27.5+ hardtail take compared to say a 120mm 27.5 full sus. Can these plus hardtails do what any trail bike is meant to?

    • #201115

      If I’m riding, I can definitely go faster through rough terrain on the 27.5 FS than on a HT 27.5+. While large volume tires smooth things out a bit, they are no substitute for suspension when going fast and rough.

    • #201130

      Okay.. Interesting brands are advertising the HT+ as all mountain/ trail bikes.. which they are but in reality the full sus is still going to be smoother…

    • #201132

      Yeah, calling a bike all mountain has more to do with geometry and suspension travel than tires alone. The idea of an all-mountain hardtail actually isn’t new, and certainly isn’t limited to plus bikes. For example, in 2012 Diamondback was selling a hardtail 29er called the Mason that was billed as an all-mountain rig, with skinny 2.0″ Slant Six tires.

      The Mason is Diamondback’s “all-mountain 29er hardtail” which sounds like an oxymoron but it’s actually a really interesting concept. With a slack 66.5-degree headtube and140mm of travel up front this isn’t like any other hardtail 29er out there. In keeping with the all-mountain theme, the bike also sports wide, 740mm bars and a short stem. The Mason even features a sloping top-tube an a 1-by drivetrain.


    • #201139

      Okay okay I see… this is all kind of new and I’m slowly learning! Would the amount of travel help define it too?

    • #201222

      fsherfy said “Still new here could someone please  explain boost compatible to me. I l think it has to do with wider wheel hubs. I.e. Longer axles.  But not sure. Thanks.”

      Yes, that’s correct. Boost is a relatively new standard that came around due to the plus-size tires (29+, 27.5+) that came out in recent years. It means that the frame (or fork) is wider between the dropouts. Wider spacing allows for wider hubs and wider rims without sacrificing wheel strength. With traditional dropout spacing, ever-wider rims meant decreasing wheel strength due to the angle of the spokes. By going to wider dropouts/hubs, the rims can be quite wide without compromising strength. So, if you’re in the market for a new bike and think you might want to try out plus-size tires, then getting a frame and fork with Boost spacing is the way to go.

    • #208689

      Well, I decided to go with the Fuji Reveal 1.1 a 27.5 trail bike…. loving super stoked and doing some things to help make it the ultimate bike for me… getting a dropper, switching to 1X11 and in the future hoping to get a new wheelset, and switch brake calipers to SLX….! Cheers!   😀

    • #208707

      Boost refers to a wider wheel hub, nowadays they go up to 148mm.  Makes for a stiffer wheel I guess.  Also allows for flexibility switching from 29 to 27.5 plus in some bikes.

    • #208737

      I had a 29er, and it rolls really nice. Now i have the 27.5 and i like it better to bumpier terrain. The 27.5 i feel is faster, and feel i have more control. on 29, as a big guy, feel like its bending.

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