Thinking of going MTB

Alex34

Regular
Location
Watford
I purchased a hybrid last year, Whyte Coniston 2013 http://whyte.bike/2013/product.php?xProd=6 , as I wasn't too sure whether I wanted to go road or MTB. I hadn't ridden in a long time and when I did it was more for leisure.

Since I purchased the Coniston I haven't been able to ride it as much as I planned, due to a wrist injury several months ago, but when I do I find myself veering a little too far off the beating path and have to steer back to reality... reluctantly.

I like the Whyte brand and seriously interested in the 905 http://whyte.bike/gb/models/trail/trail-hardtail-27-5-650b/905-2/ but can't justify spending the money right now... Would it be possible to morph my hybrid into a MTB? Although the geometry is slightly different between the two frames the grade aluminium is identical and my gearing is already MTB. If I upgraded the front fork and slapped on some real 29er wheels and tyres could I realistically get away with it?

Any advice will be greatly appreciated.
 
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MikeW-71

Veteran
Location
Carlisle
It's not far off an MTB to be honest anyway. You'd be surprised how capable it will be off-road. Pop on some Cyclocross tyres and it'd be fine on bridleways and Blue grade trails.

You could try some new wheels, but you may be restricted for tyre clearance to the frame, you'd need to check that.

If you're thinking of going to a full MTB, don't throw money at the hybrid other than a change of tyres IMO. Put the rest of the money saved towards the new MTB.
 

Pale Rider

Legendary Member
As you have correctly identified, the main difference between a maker's hybrids and mountain bikes in a lot of cases is the tyres.

I expect your existing wheels will not be wide enough to take 2"+ mountain bike tyres, so you will need to replace those.

You would need a cassette on the back and a disc rotor on both to making changing swift.

Having two wheelsets is a benefit, because you can quickly put the old hybrids back on if you know you have a long road/hardpack ride to do.

Upgrading the fork is probably not worth it, the fork you have is a budget one, but a worthwhile upgrade would cost £250 or more.
 
OP
Alex34

Alex34

Regular
Location
Watford
Some good advice, thanks.

I think the wheel and tyre upgrade is worth it. Especially after Pale Rider pointed out the benefit of having the two sets. Just hoping I have enough clearance now. I have been able to find some really nice 29x2.0 tyres that should fit... even 29x1.9 but they are far and few between.
 

Pale Rider

Legendary Member
Front should be no bother - plenty of room in the forks.

Back could be a problem around the two stays - seat and chain.

Did you buy the bike from a dealer near you?

If so, they should be prepared to whip a wheel/tyre out of a mountain bike and try it in your frame.

Or ask a bike shop to do the same and quote for the bits.
 
OP
Alex34

Alex34

Regular
Location
Watford
Yeah... I broke out the tape measure and digital callipers this morning and it's safe to say that a 29er wheel tyre combo will not fit. It is a bit annoying because it's due to the silly fender bracket that Whyte welded to the seat stay so I am more restricted in height than width.

If I stay within the current over all diameter of the stock wheel I will be okay or even slightly more. That being said is it possible to use a 27.5 wheel and tyre combo instead? Theoretically I see nothing wrong with it as long as the overall diameter is similar and the tyre fits within the frame. This way I could get away with a chunkier tyre, however, I maybe overlooking something...
 
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OP
Alex34

Alex34

Regular
Location
Watford
Front should be no bother - plenty of room in the forks.

Back could be a problem around the two stays - seat and chain.

Did you buy the bike from a dealer near you?

If so, they should be prepared to whip a wheel/tyre out of a mountain bike and try it in your frame.

Or ask a bike shop to do the same and quote for the bits.
I purchased from a dealer 50+ miles away as it was new/old stock. I have a few dealers in my area though that I am sure will assist.
 

Kevoffthetee

On the road to nowhere
i find myself looking the other way. I've always had a mounting bike so bought the Revel and I love the bike, but find I only use it on bridleways and parks.

I'm going to buy faster rolling tyres and even seek advice on fitting a different fork to reduce weight
 

KneesUp

Guru
Cut the bracket off if you're not going to use it?
 

Pale Rider

Legendary Member
Yeah... I broke out the tape measure and digital callipers this morning and it's safe to say that a 29er wheel tyre combo will not fit. It is a bit annoying because it's due to the silly fender bracket that Whyte welded to the seat stay so I am more restricted in height than width.

If I stay within the current over all diameter of the stock wheel I will be okay or even slightly more. That being said is it possible to use a 27.5 wheel and tyre combo instead? Theoretically I see nothing wrong with it as long as the overall diameter is similar and the tyre fits within the frame. This way I could get away with a chunkier tyre, however, I maybe overlooking something...
There is no reason not to fit a 27.5" wheel and tyre.

No need to worry about the diameter because it will be smaller, although again I would prefer to try a 27.5" in the rear before deciding.

It's a bicycle, and as you've discovered, unforeseen snags can arise.

Your 27.5" rig will ride a bit lower and be slightly lower geared, but not so as you will notice.

I would be reluctant to hack something off any bike frame, but you could post a pic to get a better opinion.

Your 27.5" idea seems the better one to me.
 
OP
Alex34

Alex34

Regular
Location
Watford
i find myself looking the other way. I've always had a mounting bike so bought the Revel and I love the bike, but find I only use it on bridleways and parks.

I'm going to buy faster rolling tyres and even seek advice on fitting a different fork to reduce weight
Maybe we can swap forks and wheels!? Lol :-)
 
OP
Alex34

Alex34

Regular
Location
Watford
Just an update...

I did some more research and spoke to a few shops and MTB riders. Seems like the 650b setup may cause more hassle than it's worth.

I have, however, done some experimenting with "monster cross" tyres. I tried out some 28x1.75 Schwalbe Smart Sams and were surprised they fit my frame, with just enough clearance. They seem to fit the bill and are about 46mm at their widest point. I'm going to run them for the next few weeks and if all is well I will be testing out Bruce Gordon's 700x43 Rock N Road tyres, which have gotten some really good reviews.
 
The problem you can have with carrying out any mods to a bike even very small ones, if something goes wrong with the frame or indeed to any part, and you have injuries, if you go to the dealer or the manufactures and say you want compensation they will more than likely tell you to stuff it. Fitting other size wheels for a start if you have an accident because of a failure, they will tell you the the frame is designed to use a certain size wheel and tyre size.
 
OP
Alex34

Alex34

Regular
Location
Watford
Yeah I'm sure they will!

I spoke to Whyte about it as well and they recommended up 37mm tyres on the stock rims and if I wanted to go winder to have the mod done through an authorised dealer with maybe 21mm inner width rims.

They seem pretty open to slight modifications but you never know.
 
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