School Me on Must Have Features for Single Speed 29er

Discuss light weight issues concerning mountain bikes & parts.

Moderator: Moderator Team

joeg26er
Posts: 62
Joined: Thu Aug 28, 2008 3:40 am

by joeg26er

Hi -
I've always ridden geared bikes and now I would like a nice SS 29er.

I am a total noob on SS

School Me on Must Have Features for Single Speed 29er?

I would think hydraulic disc brakes- is 180fr / 160 rr ok or should it be 180mm all around?

What's available? Carbon fork vs Suspension fork?

Max tire size?

Is 440mm chainstays OK? Are 450mm acceptable?

Are WTB STP rims ok? What inner rim width?

Would a 27.5 SS be better than a 29er?

Best SS crank for money?
Lightest SS crank for money?

Anything I forgot to address?

Basically, looking for suggestions / your wish list / build list for a mid-level SS 29er that has good bang for buck

Thanks :)

User avatar
silvalis
Posts: 342
Joined: Mon Sep 07, 2015 1:02 am
Location: Brisbane

by silvalis

A sliding rear dropout.
Chapter 2 Tere
Scott Spark 720plus

by Weenie


TheRookie
Posts: 910
Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2012 4:23 pm
Location: Midlands, United Kingdom

by TheRookie

I ride with a fair few single speeders including the current SS world champ from WEMBO - Steve Day.

29er, for SS you need to maximise the roll over benefit as it's even more important without gears to help you, in fact many SS riders are now use the semi plus tyres like the 3" Chopacumbra's to aid roll over on features.

Chainstay length is always a case of as shirt as you can and still fit the tyres you want, plus you will ideally have either sliding dropouts or an eccentric bottom bracket, you can use a tensioner similar to a single jockey wheel mech but it's not as good.

You may want to run shorter cranks, many guys run 170 or 165 to aid spin speed when going fast, a mate I have cadenced at 225rpm on the cranks on a downhill section. Most riders use a normal crank and just put the ring in the right place for the chainline, otherwise the middleburn SS cranks are popular. Oval rings work fine if they float your boat but due to the slight change in tension they are a bit more fiddley on chain tension.

Rim width is the same as for any MTB, to match tyre size, so for conventional tyres circa 21mm, if you want to try wider then circa 30mm.

Discs, again SS has no effect, the guys I ride with are either on 180/160 or 160/160.

Forks, rigid are popular but for endurance events a bit of give helps with rider fatigue, a friend who races has SID's for suspension and carbon Prongs for regular riding, another friend uses Lauf forks. Steve became WC using Surley Cromo I believe.

Frame wise, lots of good choices from Surley, Singular, Trek Stache (the lofted stay means you can ride wider tyres and keep a narrow rear end) etc etc.
Impoverished weight weenie wanna-be!
Budget 26" HT build viewtopic.php?f=10&t=110956

joeg26er
Posts: 62
Joined: Thu Aug 28, 2008 3:40 am

by joeg26er

This is good info - any brakes you'd specifically suggest as being mid range but good bang for buck? XT or Guide? If I can get a good deal on Code brakes are those overkill?

OH- what is a good gear range to start on? Say on 29x2.2 tires - but you'd say try to get a frame that will fit 27.5 x 2.8 right?

BikeAnon
Posts: 395
Joined: Sun Mar 02, 2014 6:36 pm
Location: NY USA

by BikeAnon

"Must have" on a MTB.......

Gears.



;)

kevhogaz
Posts: 225
Joined: Fri Aug 05, 2011 5:18 am
Location: Arizona

by kevhogaz

I ride a rigid SS 29er. Best upgrades I've made so far was an Enve rider bar. Made the ride a lot smoother, and doesn't flex too much when standing.

I also just picked up a set of 2.6 Nobby Nic's, and can't wait to see how they ride. Should be a nice upgrade over the 2.3's I'm on now!!

If you're like me, you'll like and ride your Ss more than your geared bikes.

TheRookie
Posts: 910
Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2012 4:23 pm
Location: Midlands, United Kingdom

by TheRookie

joeg26er wrote:This is good info - any brakes you'd specifically suggest as being mid range but good bang for buck? XT or Guide? If I can get a good deal on Code brakes are those overkill?

Code would be overkill for most SS riding, SS you just pick brakes for as you would a normal 29er XC bike so depends on your budget and preference.

I do like Formula brakes for their serviceability and weight and feel, but some of it is just that I think they look cool!
Impoverished weight weenie wanna-be!
Budget 26" HT build viewtopic.php?f=10&t=110956

joeg26er
Posts: 62
Joined: Thu Aug 28, 2008 3:40 am

by joeg26er

Are Guide brakes still considered problematic?

Are XT brakes still the gold standard?

If I can get Code brakes for the same price as XT, should I get those?

What gears are most general purpose? 30x18? I have no clue...never ridden SS 29er before so any help is much appreciated :)

Is it OK if the frame is a slider but with 135mm spacing - so I would use a normal rear hub and spacer kit...

Would a RaceFace Cinch crank be best bang for buck?

TheRookie
Posts: 910
Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2012 4:23 pm
Location: Midlands, United Kingdom

by TheRookie

No idea if guide are considered problematic, but SRAM v Shimano I'd take Shimano.

32x16 or 32x18 are most common with riders local to me, it depends on the local gradients where you ride really.

Yes, no issue, but if using a QR rather than nutted use chain tugs and a Shimano QR for the better clamping load via the internal cam.

Good bang for the buck is a decent used XT, not the lightest but a great value.
Impoverished weight weenie wanna-be!
Budget 26" HT build viewtopic.php?f=10&t=110956

joeg26er
Posts: 62
Joined: Thu Aug 28, 2008 3:40 am

by joeg26er

Thanks!
What about Steel vs ALU frame?
Is either a must have? Does the frame material really matter if I'm running 29x2.3 tires?
Thanks

TheRookie wrote:I ride with a fair few single speeders including the current SS world champ from WEMBO - Steve Day.

29er, for SS you need to maximise the roll over benefit as it's even more important without gears to help you, in fact many SS riders are now use the semi plus tyres like the 3" Chopacumbra's to aid roll over on features.

Chainstay length is always a case of as shirt as you can and still fit the tyres you want, plus you will ideally have either sliding dropouts or an eccentric bottom bracket, you can use a tensioner similar to a single jockey wheel mech but it's not as good.

You may want to run shorter cranks, many guys run 170 or 165 to aid spin speed when going fast, a mate I have cadenced at 225rpm on the cranks on a downhill section. Most riders use a normal crank and just put the ring in the right place for the chainline, otherwise the middleburn SS cranks are popular. Oval rings work fine if they float your boat but due to the slight change in tension they are a bit more fiddley on chain tension.

Rim width is the same as for any MTB, to match tyre size, so for conventional tyres circa 21mm, if you want to try wider then circa 30mm.

Discs, again SS has no effect, the guys I ride with are either on 180/160 or 160/160.

Forks, rigid are popular but for endurance events a bit of give helps with rider fatigue, a friend who races has SID's for suspension and carbon Prongs for regular riding, another friend uses Lauf forks. Steve became WC using Surley Cromo I believe.

Frame wise, lots of good choices from Surley, Singular, Trek Stache (the lofted stay means you can ride wider tyres and keep a narrow rear end) etc etc.

TheRookie
Posts: 910
Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2012 4:23 pm
Location: Midlands, United Kingdom

by TheRookie

Again, the fact it's SS isn't relevant to choice of frame material but you see more steel SS than you'd expect, that said the fact SS is unusual and the choice of a certain type of enthusiast probably explains that (and the disproportionate propensity for facial hair!), I ride with SS guys on steel, carbon, Ti and Al frames. Personal choice, I guess steel is possibly also more common as the weight saving of going SS more than cancel out the weight increase from a steel frame, so it's still lighter than a decent Al XC bike.
Impoverished weight weenie wanna-be!
Budget 26" HT build viewtopic.php?f=10&t=110956

de lars cuevas
Posts: 92
Joined: Fri Jul 28, 2006 8:28 pm
Location: the Netherlands

by de lars cuevas

Some tips that work for me:

- I ride longer cranks on my SS. 190mm. But then again, my inseam is 940 mm :-) You're goanna have to learn to spin! In the Netherlands, i ride a 29er 34-19 by the way.

- With a singlespeed, you'll do a lot of hammering out of the saddle. A lot of singlers ride a fixed fork for that reason (and because of stupid scene conventions off course, ignore them). If you like front suspension, a Terralogic or brain fork is nice. It looks clean and only works when needed!

- You'll want keep as much momentum as possible. That means faster cornering. A front tire with lots of cornering grip is nice.

- When climbing out of the saddle, you can generate extra power by pulling the bars with your arms and core muscles. Bent bars like the www.on-one.co.uk/i/q/HBOOMA/on-one-mary-handlebar are really nice for that. The illustrous www.jonesbikes.com/h-bar-jones-cut-710-aluminum/ also have the extra arms in the middle, which really helps for fast time trial position spinning on smoother surfaces.

Have fun! Singling is good for you souplesse, muscle force and riding technique. You will find out that sometimes you'll ride faster without gears. because you "have to". :D Be carefull with your knees though.

Dirtperson666
Posts: 17
Joined: Sat Jun 10, 2017 8:35 pm

by Dirtperson666

Must haves? A tension system that isn't BB based (they always slip and changed your fit) and a modular drop out system to accommodate a number of configurations. At one point you might want gears, or you might want to sell it. Options are a plus. As well, a 44mm headtube to accommodate a variety of steerers. I liked running my SS rigid, but would also throw on a suspension fork when I went to a more gnarly trail system.

Pivot Les is a great option. I'm not a big fan of the trek stranglehold drop out, they will slip (it's inevitable). The specialized camber ss was cool too, and pretty inexpensive. The Kona honzo ti is a solid option as well.

TheRookie
Posts: 910
Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2012 4:23 pm
Location: Midlands, United Kingdom

by TheRookie

Dirtperson666 wrote:A tension system that isn't BB based (they always slip and changed your fit)

A large number of friends use EBB's without issue.
Impoverished weight weenie wanna-be!
Budget 26" HT build viewtopic.php?f=10&t=110956

mattr
Posts: 3457
Joined: Fri May 25, 2007 6:43 pm
Location: The Grim North.

by mattr

Just have to set them up properly. 90% of it is in the prep, tightening the bolts is just the final step!

by Weenie


Post Reply
  • Similar Topics
    Replies
    Views
    Last post