Nashbar Bee's Knees Single-Speed 650B/27.5" Mountain Bike

Item # NB-SS650

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Nashbar Bee's Knees Single-Speed 650B/27.5" Mountain Bike

The new 650b (27.5") mountain bikes are the next big thing and the Nashbar Bee's Knees Single Speed 650b mountain bike is a perfect example of why. The Bee's Knees Single Speed has the benefits of a 29er without the draw backs. Its bigger wheel size (27.5") means you can roll over stuff that would stop most 26" MTB's, but it is smaller and more nimble than a full-size 29er bike. It's a sweetly spec'd, super simple bike at a value you won't find anywhere else.

But don't just take our word about the Bee's Knees, here's a nice review from Dirt Rag!

"The Bee's Knees is a simple, fully rigid singlespeed with working man's components that, while on the entry-level side, will likely last a while. Notably, the Alex XD-Lite rims, Kenda Nevegal 27.5 tires and FSA Hammer headset all took a beating and remain ready to handle more...

"Overall, this bike is a perfect starter for anyone who wants to jump into the 27.5 wheel category and is a great value at $500."

  • Super simple single speed drive train is ready to tackle nearly any terrain with ease
  • 650b chromoly fork is strong, lightweight and ready to crush some singletrack
  • Avid BB5 mechanical disc brakes provide plenty of stopping power
  • Chromoly frame is stiff, lightweight and ultra-durable
  • Alex XD-Lite 650b wheels are lightweight and trail ready
Nashbar Bee's Knees Single-Speed 650B/27.5" Mountain Bike
  • FRAME 650b Chromoly, standard 1 1/8" head tube, trail tuned chain and seat stays, disc tabs and water bottle mounts
  • FORK 650b Cromoly, disc tabs, standard 1 1/8" steerer
  • REAR SHOCK None
  • HEADSET FSA Hammer, 1 1/8"
  • CRANKSET Alloy square taper 104mm bcd with 32t ring
  • BOTTOM BRACKET Square Taper
  • SHIFTERS None
  • LEVERS Avid BB5
  • HANDLEBAR 6061 Oversized Riser Bar, 620mm width, 25mm rise, 5 degree sweep
  • STEM Alloy, 7 degree rise, 90mm
  • FRONT DERAILLEUR None; Chainguard
  • REAR DERAILLEUR None
  • CASSETTE 18T
  • BRAKES Avid BB5 mechanical
  • WHEELSET Alex 650b XD-Lite, 6-bolt IS disc
  • TIRES Kenda Nevegal, K-1010, 27.5x2.1 (650b)
  • PEDALS None
  • SEATPOST Alloy, 27.2x350mm
  • SADDLE Mountain
  • CHAIN KMC Z410
  • GRIPS/TAPE Kraton Black
  • Rating 4

REVIEW SNAPSHOT®

by PowerReviews
Nashbar Bee's Knees Single-Speed 650B/27.5" Mountain Bike
 
4.1

(based on 15 reviews)

100%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Durable (7)
  • Versatile (3)

Cons

  • Heavy (5)
  • Narrow bars (4)

Best Uses

  • Mountain biking (12)
  • Commuting/city (6)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Avid cyclist (11)
    • Cycling Style:
    • Speed oriented (12)
    • Was this a gift?:
    • No (15)

Reviewed by 15 customers

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4.0

Great For Price

By ANDREW

from PA

About Me Avid Cyclist

Pros

  • Durable
  • Easy to maintain
  • Fun To Ride
  • Price

Cons

  • Heavy
  • Narrow bars
  • Saddle

Best Uses

  • Commuting/City
  • Mountain Biking

Comments about Nashbar Bee's Knees Single-Speed 650B/27.5" Mountain Bike:

I am very pleased with the bees knees SS 650b. I've been riding it for a few months now, and with a few basic upgrades, it rides quite nicely.

Right off the bat the bars and seat need attention. The bars are too narrow for ascending hills and the saddle is about as soft rock wrapped with a dish towel. Spent about $50 to upgrade these. I found the 32/18 gearing to be a bit difficult at times so I swapped the rear with a 20T. $15 investment.

I personally have no problem with the bb5 brakes. I find they have plenty of stopping power.

The bottom line: Great starting point for a SS mtb. The bike is well built and a few inexpensive upgrades make the riding experience even more enjoyable. Keep in mind that nashbar often has 20% off entire order days so you can get a nice discount on this sweet ride.

  • Cycling Style:
  • Speed Oriented
  • Was this a gift?:
  • No

Comment on this review

(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Great XC Bike

By Steel is Real

from Boulder,CO

About Me Avid Cyclist

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Durable
  • Easy to maintain
  • FUN

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Cross country
    • Mountain Biking

    Comments about Nashbar Bee's Knees Single-Speed 650B/27.5" Mountain Bike:

    I use this Bike on local trails in the boulder area. Its rigid so don't expect a squishy ride like a full-suspension. If that is what you want this is not the right bike for you. But if you are looking for a bike that will make you stronger and improve your ability to pick the best line this bike is for you. Plus it is a ton of fun. The gearing could be a little on the high side for some but if you are in shape it is perfect. Buy this bike and enjoy its simplicity.

    • Cycling Style:
    • Speed Oriented
    • Was this a gift?:
    • No

    Comment on this review

    (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

     
    4.0

    Great 1st single speed

    By Chris

    from San Pablo, CA

    About Me Competitive Cyclist

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

    • Durable
    • Fast and Smooth Ride

    Cons

    • Chain Loosen

    Best Uses

    • Extreme Sports
    • Mountain Biking

    Comments about Nashbar Bee's Knees Single-Speed 650B/27.5" Mountain Bike:

    Bike was packaged nice and arrived in nice condition. Only the seat post was slightly nicked up from shipping, but Nashbar quickly sent out a new one. Top notch customer support!

    I bought this bike to ride around SF bay area trails. Getting a little bored riding my geared bikes and been noticing a lot of SS on the trails. I just had to get in on the fun.

    The bikes fit and finish is very good. Took about 20 minutes to set the bike up. I changed to a shorter 60mm stem, 740mm bars, and lock on grips. Put on some XT pedals, adjusted the brakes and hit the trail. Bike was fun and the SS really adds fun back my ride. The BB5 brakes are very quiet and have good power. I did wipe the rotors and pads down before bedding them in.

    I did drop a chain on my second ride, but noticed the chain had gotten very slack. I've since added some DMR 10mm chain tugs and the problem is fixed.
    The only other problem was the wheels. I had to true them up on my stand and properly tension all the spokes. After my first ride the front wheel was wobbling pretty good. Since truing them up they are perfect now.

    Overall great bike and with some easy upgrades even better.

    • Cycling Style:
    • Speed Oriented
    • Was this a gift?:
    • No

    Comment on this review

    (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

     
    3.0

    Ok for the price

    By DAVEJS

    from LA

    About Me Avid Cyclist

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

    • Nice Steel Frame

    Cons

    • Bb5 Brakes
    • Wheelset

    Best Uses

      Comments about Nashbar Bee's Knees Single-Speed 650B/27.5" Mountain Bike:

      Right off the bat the wheels needed serious attention. They both needed truing and the rear hub needed adjusting. Overall, it is a nice framset, but low-end components keep this from being really nice ride. Bottom line: Upgrade as you go or buy nicer to start with.

      • Cycling Style:
      • Speed Oriented
      • Was this a gift?:
      • No

      Comment on this review

      (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

       
      4.0

      Great bike for $500

      By DWD

      from Park City, UT

      About Me Avid Cyclist

      Pros

      • 650b Wheel Size
      • Disc Brakes
      • Price

      Cons

      • Only One Bottle Mount
      • Uncomfortable saddle

      Best Uses

      • Mountain Biking

      Comments about Nashbar Bee's Knees Single-Speed 650B/27.5" Mountain Bike:

      Very happy with the bike after a few upgrades. The 19" fits my 5'-11" perfectly. My only complaint is that there is only one bottle mount and the saddle is uncomfortable. They could easily add a second bottle mount to the seat tube.
      The bike shipped with 32/18 gearing, not the 38/16 as advertised. Nashbar needs to fix their ad. I went ahead and installed the RaceFace 32T I ordered with the bike (thinking it was coming with a 38T), and installed a 20T ProCog. Replacing the cheap steel chainring/cog with quality components is a necessary upgrade. I replaced the stock, heavy and narrow Al handlebar with a wider carbon riser (also from Nashbar). I replaced the uncomfortable stock saddle. Lastly, I replaced the BB5 brakes with BB7 as others had suggested.
      After these upgrades the bike is a solid MTB.
      I also want to compliment Nashbar's customer service. While the bike was in transit a few days after ordering I noticed a one day sale of 21% off the bike. I informed Nashbar how annoying it was to see that I could have saved $105 on the bike by waiting a few days and they graciously sent me a gift card for the $105+tax.

      • Cycling Style:
      • Speed Oriented
      • Was this a gift?:
      • No

      Comment on this review

       
      4.0

      fun Bike

      By coop

      from Dallas tx

      About Me Avid Cyclist

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • 3218 Gearing Just Right
      • 650b Is Great
      • Fantastic Price

      Cons

      • Heavy

      Best Uses

      • Flogging With Low Consequ
      • Mountain Biking
      • Texas Trail Ready

      Comments about Nashbar Bee's Knees Single-Speed 650B/27.5" Mountain Bike:

      For the price this is a great bike. I've owned $3,500+ bikes. I bought this one to try the 650b in a single speed format. It is a blast. The geometry works and the components get the job done. If you need quick release wheels, finely feathering brakes, or a bike that feels good to throw over your shoulder you should consider spending a lot more money. If you need a solid bike ready to hit the trail 10 minutes after the shipment is dropped this bike is for you. It is a joy to get out of the saddle and crank.

      • Cycling Style:
      • Comfort Oriented
      • Was this a gift?:
      • No

      Comment on this review

       
      4.0

      Great bike

      By Ben

      from Iowa

      About Me Avid Cyclist

      Pros

      • Durable
      • Lightweight

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Commuting/City
        • Mountain Biking

        Comments about Nashbar Bee's Knees Single-Speed 650B/27.5" Mountain Bike:

        Amazing bike for the price, and really all you need. Simple for cleaning, maintenance and they enjoyment of your ride. It's a mountain bike that isn't heavy as some say, unless you want to shell out big $ to save a few lbs. The components are great, only two reccomendations. One would be BB7 brakes instead of BB5 for a little better stopping power, but thats a little picky. Tire choices are a little limited, but that will change in the next year or so as the 650b fad continues. Other than that the gearing is way too stiff if you are not using this for commuting. I made the switch to a bigger cog. The paint job looks much better in person. This bike can dish out as much as geared "higher quality" mountain bikers who roll their eyes as you pass them by.

        • Cycling Style:
        • Speed Oriented
        • Was this a gift?:
        • No

        Comment on this review

         
        4.0

        great bike for the price

        By jojoe dancer

        from frozen tudra

        About Me Casual/ Recreational

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Easy to setup
        • Good Specs For The Price
        • Great Paint Job
        • Well Boxed

        Cons

        • Heavy

        Best Uses

        • Sporting Around

        Comments about Nashbar Bee's Knees Single-Speed 650B/27.5" Mountain Bike:

        mine came with a 32t even though the specs said 38t- would have preferred the 38t, the 32t seems too easy a gear, but can be easily changed

        • Cycling Style:
        • Speed Oriented
        • Was this a gift?:
        • No

        Comment on this review

        (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        Great bike

        By D

        from Seattle

        About Me Casual/ Recreational

        Pros

        • Affordable
        • Durable
        • Well built quality

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Commuting/City
          • Mountain Biking

          Comments about Nashbar Bee's Knees Single-Speed 650B/27.5" Mountain Bike:

          I've been looking for an affordable, well made single speed mountain bike for a while now and this fits the bill perfectly. The geometry and wheel size make for a comfortable riding position and it feels really stable. I haven't done much off-road yet (just assembled yesterday) but my test ride felt great. The bike has clean welds and a nice finish. Shipped fast, packed well and easy to assemble (Bike is already 90% ready when it arrives).

          • Cycling Style:
          • Comfort Oriented
          • Was this a gift?:
          • No

          Comment on this review

          (5 of 8 customers found this review helpful)

           
          4.0

          Not too shabby

          By J Hickorystick

          from East Coast, USA

          About Me Avid Cyclist

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Cost-value
          • Fun Xc Ride
          • Good Starting Point

          Cons

          • Inappropriate Gearing
          • Narrow bars
          • Weak brakes

          Best Uses

          • Riding Trails Duh

          Comments about Nashbar Bee's Knees Single-Speed 650B/27.5" Mountain Bike:

          Long story short - It's not a bad rig. Good value for the money and a decent starting point. A fine option for dipping a toe into the 650B water without dropping more serious coin.

          A couple of upgrades should be made for comfort's sake, like the bar and saddle, but others like the gearing and brakes are dread necessities. Chain tensioning is a serious consideration as well, especially for this type of bike. Such a beast naturally requires enthusiastic pedal mashing which can overwhelm axle nuts alone. Those quibbles aside, it's a snappy XC whip packaged at a price that's tough to beat. Poise at speed and in standard trail chunder are pretty good but it's still a rigid XC bike so don't expect miracles. If nothing else, it begs one to consider how the wheelsize will develop with more refined geometry & components.

          So drastic are the differences before and after modifying it's stock form that I feel there are two discussions to be had regarding the merits of this model. Although certainly capable of being ridden casually, or even with a touch of enthusiasm, it simply isn't fit for heavy work out of the box. The stock 38/20 gearing is great for putting a prompt head of steam together on flattish ground but that's about it. Forget climbing until you sort out the ratio. The Nevegal tires, although seemingly a bit more reliable than their 26" brethren, are but barely capable of keeping up with such pace when things get dicey. Conditions and cornering confidence being very personal things, I shudder to imagine what it would be like with less knobby rubber. For my tastes, the stock 620mm bars are at least a couple inches too narrow. I feel they enhance the shopping cart aspects of the handling without offering any appreciable advantage besides a more robust forearm workout. Besides being more suited for scrubbing speed than checking gravity-fueled aggression, replacing the BB5 brakes should be seriously considered to alleviate the drag and warble which seems inherent to them. Although not impossible to set up in a manner which minimizes those attributes, doing so is much more of a hassle than other models both within and beyond the brand.

          The front end is a bit twitchy, albeit less so with a wider bar bolted on. The rear end doesn't seem to like letting it up easily. It's ok for lofting a little to help clear low obstacles but isn't inclined to manual without considerable effort. I'm no engineer but the fact that they use the same length chainstays throughout a range of three larger sizes might have something to do with that. That's mostly ok because at this point in my life I'm mostly a wheels-on-the-ground, wind-it-up-and-hang-on kind of rider anyway.

          Is this wheel circumference the Goldilocks between 26" and 29"? Will it ultimately lead to Holy Grail bikes which compensate for arrogance and ignorance in equal measure? I haven't the foggiest clue. At this point, my abbreviated time on it reflects mostly positive experiences and a hopeful outlook. If I could have but one bike in my shed, this would not be my sole ride. However, as an enhancement to a quiver, a test case for the wheel size or a casual no-frills alternative to pricier options, it's a respectable XC selection. Just be sure you budget a bit more than the asking price for select component upgrades because a far more capable and enjoyable bike is waiting to be built up from it.

          • Cycling Style:
          • Speed Oriented
          • Was this a gift?:
          • No

          Comment on this review

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          Nashbar Bee's Knees Single-Speed 650B/27.5" Mountain Bike

          Nashbar Bee's Knees Single-Speed 650B/27.5" Mountain Bike

          Item No. »  NB-SS650

          $499.99
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