October 5, 2012


This was was fun and unusual, simply because it’s a 650b and so I spent a lot of time double checking things (can that chainstay angle really be right?) because I build 90% 29ers, so my intuition about where things should go and how things should look isn’t always right for 26 or 650b setups.

Building 29ers all the time does make building for smaller wheels seem super easy, though – I’m used to absolutely *cramming* in the tire, chainrings, chainstays, seat tube, etc to make everything work right with the big wheels. 650b almost feels like cheating – minimal manipulation necessary to get the rear end clearances needed, no worries about fitting a front derailleur and having it interfere with the tire, able to easily run any size chainring Damon wants – I’ve opined before that 650b is great, but man, it’s also a dream come true from a builder’s perspective, at least if you’re used to doing 29ers!

Anyway, here’s the geometry breakdown:
-71/73 angles
-For a 100mm travel (can’t say what, it’s officially a no-no!) suspension fork
-59cm ETT and 62.8cm front center
-30.5cm/12″ BB height
-42cm (actual, 41.7 effective) chainstays
-Plenty of room for 2.3s or so
-S-bends, guides for full length housing

The intent is to make something a little shorter/snappier for his trails (he rides a 29er I built him 7 years ago, before the advent of things like direct-mount front derailleurs and long-offset forks made modern snappy 29ers possible). His body type and trails are IMO pretty much perfect for the 650bs, so I’m excited to see how he likes it.