29er Mountain Bikes
Why Roll on Bigger Wheels?

Discussion or even battle 29er Mountain Bikes vs. 26er
Seems like never ending story.
Follow this page to get most important details and decide yourself.

“26er wheel is big. 29er is bigger” So?

Oh, by the way “26er” and “29er” mean sizes of the mountain bike’s wheel. Most mountain bicycles use ISO 559 mm wheels which are usually called 26" wheels. 29 inch mountain bikes are equipped with ISO 622 mm wheels. (ISO means International Organization for Standardization).

And that’s it? No. Here comes the battle.

Followers of 29er mountain bikes say that 29er better overcomes sticks and stones, and holes, and all other things mountain bikes are used to. Let’s call it Advantage No.1. More?


“Contact surface of a 29" wheel is little bit longer (~4-6%) than that of a 26" wheel”. Is it enough to call it Advantage No.2? More contact with a ground, more grip and more stability.

I can understand this position regarding better traction with road. But, I could doubt that as well. I prefer better tires more than bigger wheels for this point.

Another thing…

26er drives into the corners easier than 29 inch mountain bikes do. Smaller wheels ensure better handling and response to your commands.

Angle of attack. What?...

Yes. You attack and the obstacle is the one which defends. What does it mean to you? Easier way over the obstacles on your path and more comfort. Let’s name it Advantage No.3.

Sounds like a decision for those who can’t rest at night knowing they didn’t manage to overcome that “stupid large rock laying on my path” again. What a shame.

Try again, with 29er.With better (smaller) angle of attack you may succeed the next time.

29er wheels weigh more

It is certainly not a benefit for you if you are counting every ounce (gram) of your mountain bike for better performance. Welcome Disadvantage No.1. It is harder to accelerate. It is harder to climb up to the mountain.

OK, I know for sure, you are the tough guy, so keep this “weigh” issue in mind only for your information. On the other hand – remember “angle of attack” advantage?

If 29er mountain bikes beat the obstacles better than 26er, so that should also help when climbing up the mountain.

Despite the weight.

Lager size means...

Let me ask you a question. Are you tall enough? Don’t be offended. It’s a fair question if you are considering about 29er. Since the 29er is bigger than 26er the size of the frame is usually larger too.

It depends on you.

I don’t point that as another disadvantage. On contrary, you may like lager bike if you are tall and feel like an overgrown kid on your 26er.

Specialized parts

You will have smaller choice of compatible bike parts, for example suspension forks suitable to the 29" or tires. However, with growing 29er community this Disadvantage No.2 seems to become less serious.


Feel confused? Me too. As well as plenty of other mountain bikers. There are many pros and cons and I’m afraid there is no one-and-only answer.

It depends on your riding style. It depends on your strength (29er mountain bikes require more muscles to accelerate or ride slowly over sloughy terrain).


29er is more comfortable. And still that mysterious “angle of attack”…

Argh… the pain of choice. And the choice is yours.

Return to Mountain Bike Shop again

Back from 29er Mountain Bikes to Home page

Don't buy your bike before you read this resource...

Mountain bikes online sales

Find your perfect mountain bike trail! Enough riding in circles.

Bike trails

The more you get, the more you need. It’s time to improve your physical condition.

Cycling training

Cycling clothes – why are they so special? Find out here.


How many parts does your bike have? Let’s begin with the most important


Is it able to replace your one-man-powered ride with something more efficient? eBike offers you some interesting choices