First Look: Ibis releases all-new Tranny 29 hardtail

Ibis punctuates hardtail 29er debut with Tour Divide win

29er Cross Country

Ibis Tranny 29 Artsy

Ibis founder and co-president Scot Nicol said it himself—“Our worst kept bike secret ever will be made official on Monday.” Today is Monday so the secret is out—and it’s a hardtail carbon mountain bike with 29-inch wheels.

In development for years, Ibis officially introduced its first-ever hardtail 29er today, the all-new Tranny 29. Although they may seem late to the rigid rear 29er game, the company has a reputation for taking their time to ensure product quality.

And after being piloted to victory by Jefe Branham in the 2,700 mile Tour Divide that wrapped up last weekend, the Tranny 29 looks to be durable enough for even the most hardcore trail duty.

Ibis Tranny 29 Artsy

Based on the original

Released in 2008, the original Ibis Tranny was a 26-inch hardtail that uniquely blurred the lines with its capacity to go both ways—hence the name—either as a geared bike or a singlespeed in way the world had never seen. It featured an innovative system called Slot Machine that cleanly tensioned the chain in singlespeed mode, but also allowed the bike to completely separated in two—making it the perfect travel mountain bike for skirting excess airline baggage fees.

Though more often the choice of the endurance cycling set, it also showed its burly side as the hardtail of choice for mountain bike legend Brian Lopes on the four-cross and dirt jump scene.

Ibis Tranny 29 Singlespeed

The new, big-wheeled follow-up

The new Tranny 29 takes all that and adds bigger wheels to the mix. Not only does the new Tranny 29 retain an enhanced version of the Slot Machine design, but the frame also features compatibility with belt drive systems, internal cable routing, and has a provision for a stealth dropper post. Ibis also added a tapered head tube and a stiffer 142×12 Maxle rear thru-axle. The frame uses a press fit BB92 bottom bracket, and has the ability to run either a 100mm (44mm rake) or 120mm (51mm rake) suspension fork.

Ibis Tranny 29 Slot Machine

Sculpted by Roxy Lo—who counts the iconic Ibis Mojo among her designs—the Tranny 29 shares many of the same eye catching contours as the the full-suspension Ripley. There are several beautifully subtle design touches, including trick cable routing caps for those not running derailleurs, a gently sloping top tube, and arched seatstays with teardrop-shaped hardware where they attach to the front triangle.

Ibis Tranny 29 Elegant Stays

Like on its 26-inch predecessor, the enhanced Slot Machine enables the Tranny to be set up as a singlespeed. Essentially a sliding box behind the bottom bracket, it tensions the chain or belt without using adjustable dropouts or an eccentric bottom bracket. It’s a system singlespeeders have raved about for years as trouble-free and reliable. Additionally, where the rear triangle secures at the seatstay, Ibis has incorporated a slot for belt drive, adding even more versatility to the Tranny 29.

Ibis Tranny 29 Wild

First ride impressions

A couple weeks ago I was able to take the new Tranny 29 for a quick spin on at Corral Jump Trail near Lake Tahoe, Calif. The very first impression was its incredibly svelte weight. With a frame tipping the scales at just north of 3 pounds, the complete Tranny 29 singlespeed with Gates belt drive system, Fox Float 32 100mm CTD fork and Ibis 928 carbon wheels weighed in under 20 pounds. As a result, the bike felt effortlessly quick on the climbs, dead silent under pedaling thanks to the belt drive, and every bit as responsive and nimble in tight turns as the original Tranny 26 thanks to short 17.3-inch long chainstays.

Ibis Tranny 29 Gates Drive

More please

A Tranny 29 singlespeed with the Gates belt drive system will be arriving on our doorstep this week, so be sure to check back for a full review after we get some extensive saddle time on this much awaited new release from Ibis.

Ibis offers the Tranny 29 offers a wide range of configurations including Gates belt drive singlespeed as well as 1x and 2x systems from SRAM and Shimano. Retail pricing for the Tranny 29 frameset is $1,699, with complete bikes starting at $2,999.

Ibis Tranny 29 Geared

Ibis Tranny 29
  • Frame MSRP: $1,699
  • Complete bikes from: $2,999

For more information visit ibiscycles.com.

First Look: Ibis releases all-new Tranny 29 hardtail Gallery
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Ibis Tranny 29 Wild

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Ibis Tranny 29 Singlespeed

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Ibis Tranny 29 Artsy

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Ibis Tranny 29 Artsy

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Ibis Tranny 29 Slot Machine

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Ibis Tranny 29 Gates Drive

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Ibis Tranny 29 Elegant Stays

About the author: Kurt Gensheimer

Kurt Gensheimer thinks the bicycle is man’s most perfect invention. He firmly believes ‘singlespeed’ is a compound word. He sometimes wears a disco ball helmet. He is also known as Genshammer. He is a Gemini and sleeps outside in a hammock.


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  • PinkFloydLandis says:

    Curious why 3X is not mentioned in drivetrain compatibility. Noticed the same thing in the recent Mach 4 carbon announcement.

    Are they just not mentioning it because 3X has lost favor? Or are these bikes actually incompatible with the slight more inboard chainline of a 3X inner ring?

  • spad says:

    i have the 26 version and so excited to see the 29 version.I love the name too, if you mountain bike you know what a tranny is and it also refers to how the bike can transform from a single speed to a geared bike. Too much damn politcal correctness anyway and if you are thinking in terms of transexual and have an issue with the name you obviously have an issue. Get over it! It’s the 21 centruy. Why hate? Each to their own.

  • AC says:

    Was looking pretty good until the BB92 part. I’ll never spend that much $ on a bike with a pressed in BB.

    • Mark says:

      AC, I totally agree. BB9toobaditaintthreaded.

      Hey Santa Cruz Bikes, how about a carbon highball with SS option?
      I know you guys are neighbors.

  • Carlos says:

    This internal cable set up should have been on the new HDR 26/27.5. The cables across the TT is awful Ibis……

  • Sun says:

    What are the pros/ cons of the belt drive system?

    Thanks

  • DJ says:

    ASS do you like this more than the Pivot you just were on ?

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