FS vs 29ers


Well-Known Member
test ride both if you can. it pays to have a hardtail to perfect technique, on the other hand a fs allows you to ride more aggressively with less thinking.(opinion)


Strong like bull, smart like tractor
Team MTBNJ Halter's
why sean is home, i have no idea but he's right.

i've been on rides in 'mooch where i was the only guy on an FS rig. the others were on a hardtail 29er, a rigid SS 29er (actually, i don't think sean woke up for this ride, but i know what he would have been riding) and me on the full squish fuel.

when i first bought my fuel it was the first bike i'd ridden since i since my fully rigid 970. it was the bees knees for sure. having ridden, almost exclusively, a rigid 29er SS for the better part of a year, i've learned that for MY riding, i don't need a full squish. my next bike will be a hardtail (which will be next year if i can keep to at least one of my 2008 goals...). my opinion may change in four or five years, but by then i'll be ready for a new bike anyway.

net-net, i really love the simplicity of the SS and the roll of the 29er, but as everyone has their preferences. ride a 29er hardtail, ride a 29er full squish (provided your credit is good b/c those things are EXPENSIVE) and a 26" full squish and decide what rides right for you. it's nice that we can all chime in with our thoughts but at the end of the day its your money and more to the point, your arse. :D

oh, and i have beautiful trek ex7 for sale. :D


NYCMTB: President
I like hardtails and have no problems with them. But if I'm going to ride a hardtail, I'm going to ride a hardtail. Not a hardtail with a heavy suspension seatpost that looks awful and provides less than half the benefit of proper rear suspension.

If you want suspension (and there are very positive benefits to it), buy a full suspension bike. Suspension posts are a band-aid that help unhappy hardtail riders cope with the fact that they should have bought a full suspension bike. If you're a happy hardtail rider, obviously this doesn't apply to you. I would never steer someone looking at a new bike toward a hardtail with a suspension post.

I like my big bike with 7", I like my 29er with 4", I'd like to grab a singlespeed 29er for Long Island riding (but the wife won't give me space in our small apartment), and I'd REALLY love a hardtail dirt jump bike as well (again, space). No issues with hardtails here...


entirely thrilled
j, i think most people get sus seatposts for comfort issues, not handling and control. i got mine when i left for a several thousand miles bike tour and new i would be sitting on my seat for 10+ hours a day for months at a time...


JORBA Money Launderer
i rode rigid to start riding on a beater mongoose for about 2 years, then picked up a FS and rode it for a couple years, and then built up a 26er HT SS. once i got on the HT SS set up, i loved it - it was nice and light and the SS was simple. the fork was toast on the thing, and i wanted a new ride (just got the bike bug) and so i went looking, and now have a HT geared 29er (a niner mcr).

i think i found the ride that makes me happy right now. its comfortable, i feel real in control of the bike, and the best part is i feel a like the bike doesn't lose as much energy as my old FS (and i need all the help i can get in that dept). i may not have been losing energy on the FS, but i felt it mentally, especially climbing, and sometimes all it takes is the brain to convince you of something - real or not. once i had the SS, climbing became a whole new game for me versus something i just had to do to go downhill.

but i think one's liking to one's ride changes as one continues to ride. you start looking for different stuff to do, and you look for the ride that makes you most comfortable on that 'new' stuff you're trying. so i'm always looking for a new ride, its just when i get the bug enough to trade/swap/purchase a new ride, i'll go for it. but right now i'm feeling great on my HT 29er, so no new trail rides for me (but i am now looking for a HT urban/dj bike for some off trail fun - thats my new sickness - i f'ing love bikes).


I have an Intense Spider 29er full squish. I'm not a racer-bloke, I juts love to be out on the bike for longer rides. I choose FS becase I love the soaking-up sensation that the suspension gives you after jumping, bunny hoping, and descending rocky stuff. I'm not too bothered about weight and I haven't yet weighed the Spider but I would guess that it's just shy of 30#. But it climbs considerably better than my 26# S-Works stump jumper.

I borrowed one of Jdogs Cannondale Caffeines for a couple of weeks and really enjoyed the momemntum of the 29" wheels but the harshness (to me) of the hard tale, even on traditionally non-rocky trails, confirmed that FS was my way to go.

I don't believe that the wheels offer an extra 1" of travel, I think it's just that the wheels don't sink in to the trails pot holes and tend to float over them instead so you don't feel as much. It's not like the bloody wheel flexes or something.

You're welcome to give my bike a ride - but stay where I can see you and I want it back when we reach the single track!


Shop: Cycle Craft, Long Valley
Shop Keep
I have a FS and love it, but have been on a SS trip for about a year. 26er steel fully rigid (is there and abreviation for that?)

I see the benefit of the 29er and if I can get the stars to align my next bike will likely be a steel 29er rigid. IF would be nice. I do Like the Ferrous. I favor quick handling over stability, so a shorter trail steering geometry. And something lighter than my surly. Ti would be nice but....

Judge Smails

New Member
I hate to be a simpleton, and I'm sure other's have mentioned it - but the perfect bike is the one you are most comfortable on. The only way to find that bike is to test ride them.
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