I think it is safe to say that a 2800 mile ride in 16 days is a good indication as to how a bike holds up. Even more so on a route that has rugged terrain, huge temperature variations, and at times a reckless pilot. Thats just a pixel of what Jefe Branham and his Ibis Tranny 29 endured on this years Tour Divide victory.

Ibis first introduced the Tranny in 2008 as a 26 inch carbon hardtail. It was designed to swing both ways – single speed or geared, hence the name. The unique feature of the bike was its detachable rear triangle, a feature that gave you the ability to properly tension your single speed with its Slot Machine Technology. It also doubles as a fantastic way to travel, not a bad feature for a bikepacker. Ibis Tranny 29 It took Ibis longer than most to finally introduce the 29er version, but in June they finally did. The Tranny 29 carried over all of its popular features of their original Tranny and more. Ibis Tranny 29 Specs: We tested the beautiful light blue “Marine Layer” Tranny 29 geared. The bike was loaded with XT components and Race Face cranks. The bike came with a 100mm Kashima Fox Float 32, along with branded Ibis bars, stem, seatpost and saddle. Ibis Tranny 29 Maybe one of the most unique parts of the bike was testing out their new 941 carbon wheels. The 9 stands for 29er, and 41 stands for the width of the rims in millimeters. The 941’s are apart of Ibis’s new carbon rim series along with their 741’s and 928’s. An industry trend has led to wider rims, which allows you to run lower tire pressure, tracks better while keeping rolling resistance down, preventing tubeless burping and giving you an overall more predictable ride. The Racing Ralph mounted to the 941’s looked more like a 3.0 inch tires rather then a 2.2”. For reference a Stan’s Arch rim is 24 mm wide. Ibis Tranny 29 Geometry: I can’t say enough about how it shows that Ibis thoroughly thinks through the design of their bikes. It shows on their website with endless information, but more importantly it showed in the test ride. One of the major improvements of the detachable rear triangle was creating the seat stay attachment point to separate. This gives you the ability to run a Gates Carbon Belt Drive. With the slot machine it makes it easy to tension your chain or belt rather then adjust dropouts or an eccentric bottom bracket. Ibis Tranny 29 Because of the slot machine, the seat and chainstays were carefully designed to create the perfect flex to stiffness ratio. Ibis went with a tapered headset which gave them the ability to shorten the head tube – this will inherently lower the bars, making for a more comfortable riding position. The bike comes with a 142×12 rear end, GXP press fit BB, and sleek internal cable routing.  Ibis Tranny 29 The Ride: My first impression was positive. The bike was very responsive and stiff, every ounce of effort I put into the bike was used to its maximum potential. Before testing the Tranny, I always wondered if the bike gave more with the separated rear triangle. Coupled with the carbon rims, the carbon frame, and thru axles, any notion of “flex” quickly disappeared. The 41mm wide rims allowed the tire to track and roll very nicely especially when turning the bike over. I noticed a significant advantage in breaking power as well, likely from the surface area of the tire. Overall the wider rims gave me a sense of confidence I rarely feel unless I’m on my fat bike.  Ibis Tranny 29   Bikepacker Friendly: This bike has adventure written all over it. The detachable rear triangle will make your travels across the country a cinch. SS bikepackers, this just may be your bike, with an extremely reliable tensioning system. The overall weight is extremely low, even with the XT build. The ability to run a 100mm(44mm offset) or 120mm(51mm offset) fork could prove nice for varied terrain. The bike has a large frame space to carry two waterbottles, or a custom frame bag. Ibis Tranny 29

4 Comments

  1. The Tranny definitely looks to be a pretty awesome bike especially for those of us that ride single speed or with a belt drive. The internal routing though I am am sure would cause some issues if you had a mechanical in the middle of no where.

  2. Jan Nikolajsen

    Agree, internal routing and the press fit BB are two design aspects I’d rather not have. Besides that, awesome looking bike!

  3. Before you buy be sure to read this review of the Ibis “Tranny” here
    http://www.ibistrannyreview.com/

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