29er...not for me?

I built up a 29" wheel with a WTB Nanoraptor tire and put it in a Yuni frame I had in the garage. I’ve been trying to like it but so far, I’m not so sure I’ll learn to love the 29er…
I’ve experimented with crank lengths. I tried every size I have, 140’s, 150’s, 160’s and 170’s. I don’t know if I could try anything any shorter, I always have problems with my right knee when I try short cranks. Actually I think 150 is about as short as I can go no matter what size wheel I use. For better or worse, I’ve learned to listen to my body.
Anyway, I can’t seem to find that comfort zone or “Pocket” that I feel on all of my other rides. I feel like it always wants to get away from me, like I’m constantly working to correct things. I tried it on the trails and it wasn’t as much fun as I thought it would be. I have more fun with a 26 X 3 (even though it weighs twice as much). On the road, yeah, it’s fast but it just doesn’t feel right.
It just doesn’t seem to be a good match for me.

Frank, It seems like the larger unis just take more effort to get in the comfort zone. I’ve been riding my 29er for a few weeks and I’m gaining on it but haven’t got to the same level as my 26. One suggestion one of my riding buddies gave me is to just ride the 29 exclusively for a while without switching back to your 26 or 24. I have the 125 cranks on mine and they also have taken some adjusting to get used to. Anyway I hope it works out for you. :slight_smile:

It’s been just the oposite for me. I’ve been riding my 29er a lot lately. I’ve even been doing some trail riding on it also. It seems I love it more each time I ride it. I use 125mm cranks on it and have a v-brake.

I went out for a muni ride on my 24x3 with 170mm cranks yesterday. I had a horrible ride. I couldn’t get into it at all. It just felt too slow and the long cranks felt too long. I could keep my speed up and wasn’t carrying any momentum into the uphills. I really missed the brake too on the downhills.

Long live 29er’s…

Mojoe in 29erville

The way I figure it is that there are a lot of uni’s to choose from these days and even more combos to try per uni. Therefore, there is something for just about anyone!:smiley: It seems that the best plan is to try out as many wheels and combo’s of parts and come up with what is the most fun for you. And then just ride, ride, ride!


I’ll take a spin on it and see if I like it. You know beeull and I don’t mind taking spare unicycles off your hands.

One big difference is that the 29er set up is so light. It’s an Alex Adventurer on a Suzue hub and the Nano tire is very light. The whole uni is light as a feather.
I’m used to bigger wheels, I spend lots of time on a 26 x 3 Gazz which is 28" tall, so I’m not sure if the size is what bothers me.

 Heavy tires and Profile hubs seem to lower the center of gravity;)

when you get used to it the weight means you can do really tight turns even at high speed and can really quickly change direction in a way which you can’t on a big heavy tyre.

It definately takes a bit of time to get used to riding something light after a 26" gazz, you’re probably making lots of corrections now because you’re over-compensating, if you ride it a bit, you’ll find yourself getting used to how little input is required. The other thing you’ll not be used to is that it reacts so much more to the terrain, something that you’d not notice on a 3" tyre will apply a fair bit of twisting force to the wheel.


I tend to hunch over forward when riding Muni, and this technique doesn’t work so well on the 29, as it feels harder to control. I keep my back straight and my head up on the 29 and it responds better that way.

I remember not liking my 29’er at first but that’s changed now. I love it on gravel and dirt roads/trails that aren’t too steep. I’m using 140 mm cranks at the moment. However, it’s not a substitute for a 24 x 3.0 MUni with 170 mm cranks when the trail is steep and rocky.

Hang in there with yours … It will grow on you.

Steve Howard