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Thread: Trail bike tires

  1. #1
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    Default Trail bike tires

    So I've got that new to me Banshee Prime 29 trail bike. It's my first modern long travel bike after years on hardtails.

    Front tire is a 2.40 Onza Ibex FRC120 with the RC≤55a compound (65a/55a durometer) I had bought in Lenzerheide to replace the stupid XC rear tire that was mounted on a BMC speedfox test bike from my LBS. I kept it when I returned the test bike.

    Rear tire is a 2.35 Maxxis Ardent 3C/EXO/TR that was given to me by a friend.

    After a week of riding this bike, I came to the conclusion that the Ibex is a pretty good tire for my kind of riding while the Maxxis Ardent is quite lacking. Comparably to the front, the rear wheel wants to slide and lock up too easily.

    The easy path would be to buy another Onza Ibex. However I'm not princess and the pea and don't care if I run mismatched tires as long as the sidewall color is the same. I was wondering if there were some other great trail tires I could consider ? My kind of riding : I mainly go up and down, avoid lifts when riding locally but would occasionnally visit a station with a bike park / flow trail. My area is usually quite dry but I won't stay at home on the occasionnal days when the ground is softer/muddy. I'm looking for a versatile tire that I can trust in the descent. I believe the Onza tires are made by Maxxis and my Ibex looks a lot like a Minion DHR II which looks like a dedicated rear wheel tire ? Should I swap that Ibex for the rear and put something like a Minion DHF at the front ? Or just forget about this and ride 2 Ibex ?
    Last edited by sk_tle; 10-12-2018 at 04:04 PM.
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    Default Re: Trail bike tires

    Minions are versatile and I do like them. Another couple options are the Vittoria Morsa and Martello; I have Morsas on my Altitude and they are similar to Minions while being slightly faster rolling. They have stood up to a year of hard use with no tears or punctures as well so durability seems pretty good. I have the wide trail 2.5 or 2.6 versions which is also nice as it has a larger footprint while not being quite so balloony as the real plus tires.
     

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    Default Re: Trail bike tires

    The DHF/DHR is a great combo if you don't mind the rolling resistance. Heck, even two DHF tires is fantastic. If you want a little less rolling resistance in the rear, consider the Maxxis Aggressor. Tighter tread design, and supportive side knobs. It does really nicely unless you're on total hard pan, in which case the side knobs can't dig in and it feels squirmy on high speed corners.
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    Default Re: Trail bike tires

    Maxxis minion dhf aggressor rear is my go to
     

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    Default Re: Trail bike tires

    I run DHF/ DHR2 year round. Curious about the Aggressor for the rear, but so happy with my current combo I'll likely never buy one to try out. I want it to start raining here soon anyway. Butcher/ Purgatory is another popular combo.
    Got some cash
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    Default Re: Trail bike tires

    Quote Originally Posted by andrew flowers View Post
    Maxxis minion dhf aggressor rear is my go to
    Same here. Great combo.
     

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    Default Re: Trail bike tires

    Another great combo to consider is the newly re-designed WTB Vigilante (Front : 2.5) and the WTB Trailboss (2.4 : Rear). They also came out with a rear specific tire called the Judge which looks pretty burly and there's a few front tires that look nice as well (Warden, Convict). The one thing I really love about WTB's compounds/tires is just how supple they are.

    Great suggestions above with Maxxis's offerings. You can't go wrong. Curious about a few of Maxxis's front tire options myself.
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    Default Re: Trail bike tires

    Excellent luck here with DHR/DHF Minions, Nobby Nics and Hans Damphs

    - Garro.
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    Default Re: Trail bike tires

    I'm running a 2.5 DHF front / 2.4 Ardent rear combo. The DHF is the best tire I've ever ridden...Ardent is ok but will probably try and Agressor next.
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    Default Re: Trail bike tires

    Current trail bike mis-match: Continental Der Baron front, Maxxis High Roller 2 rear.
    The Conti is a very wide spaced tread, also very tough (has lasted all summer). Good side knobs, haven’t run Conti in a while but it’s been really good.
    I like the HR2 a lot as a rear tire, good & fast feeling with strong side knobs. I switch to Minion SS or Schwalbe Rock Razor in really dry summer conditions for extra rolling speed.
    The new Vittoria seem excellent. My kid loves the Morsa as a front.

    Since you’re in euro land, do you get much better pricing with Schwalbe / Conti / Michelin / Vittoria than US brands like Maxxis / WTB? Seems like it’s like that with bikes as well.

    People also seem to use Schwalbe Magic Mary happily (front full knob, rear cut down center) for racing if they get good pricing on them, but retail is nutty ($90+) on this side of ocean.
     

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    Default Re: Trail bike tires

    Quote Originally Posted by jesseth View Post
    Since you’re in euro land, do you get much better pricing with Schwalbe / Conti / Michelin / Vittoria than US brands like Maxxis / WTB? Seems like it’s like that with bikes as well.

    People also seem to use Schwalbe Magic Mary happily (front full knob, rear cut down center) for racing if they get good pricing on them, but retail is nutty ($90+) on this side of ocean.
    Yes we do get much better pricing on these euro brands, perhaps not at the nearest LBS but for instance I can get the Addix soft Magic Mary for ~50$ online.

    I had a good experience this summer with a front Hans Dampf (the newer Addix soft) and a rear speedgrip Rock Razor. But that was on the hardtail so I'm not sure how it would translate on the trail bike. I know the Hand Dampf had bad press back in the days but according to some reviews Schwalbe did their homework and I found it quite confidence inducing.
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    Default Re: Trail bike tires

    Rumor has it the addix compound was made by the dude who made black chili and the specialized tire compound- aka knows what he is doing. Iím hesitant to try anything different, as everyone I know rides maxxis, and we only sell maxxis mtb tires at the shop
     

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    Default Re: Trail bike tires

    The Agressor in Double-Down casing is the only non-dh casing rear tire I've been able to keep air in over the course of this season on my 160mm bike. The "interstitial siping" between the knobs helps A LOT to armor against cuts in the tread area.

    Fwiw, i run Minion DHR2's exclusively up front. DHF's are a great(hardpack) tire, but the DHR has more working edges and thus provides more grip across weird cambers. My perception is that the DHR2 is a faster rolling tire as well. Those big long blocks that Colin and Ken came up with back in the summer of '97 have certainly lasted the test of time, but in terms of grip, predictability and all-terrain use the DHR2 finally knocked the DHF off the front of my gravity-focused bikes!
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    Default Re: Trail bike tires

    Quote Originally Posted by suspectdevice View Post
    Fwiw, i run Minion DHR2's exclusively up front.
    For the desert that's what I've had on my Mrs's rig - DHR2's F&R = the desert was eating WTB's every few months - they last well in the forest, but for the desert it's Maxxis.

    - Garro.
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    Default Re: Trail bike tires

    And yes, aggressor rear double down casing. I am a big dude riding a big hardtail and it is the tire that has held up the best

    Again a lot of it depends on where you are riding, what the rocks look like, etc
     

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    Default Re: Trail bike tires

    I prefer mismatched tires on my trail bike more grip up front faster in back. Minions are a great dry option, in wet and loam I prefer a magic mary up front but they are both great. I currently have a rock razor on the back of my bike which is fast and corners well but has basically no braking traction. The aggressor seems like a solid rear option for a bit more speed than a minion and still cornering well, I am hoping they come out with an exo+ version next summer as schwalbe doesn't have very good under tread puncture resistance and I think a double down is overkill in the PNW where we don't have too many sharp rocks. I am wtb curious as well but have never ridden them.
     

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    Default Re: Trail bike tires

    Any opinions on cush-core type inserts for rear tires if riding rocky stuff?
     

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    Default Re: Trail bike tires

    Quote Originally Posted by MarkC View Post
    Any opinions on cush-core type inserts for rear tires if riding rocky stuff?
    Depending on how many thousands of feet of vertical I need to climb a Huck Norris or Flat Tire Defender is always installed. FTD/Cushcore inserts are pretty mandatory on bigger travel bikes that get used in rocks, at least for people over say.... 145 pounds? One of the fastest 15 year olds i know is 135 pounds and can't ride down a hill for more than 20 feet without flatting unless he's running Cushcore.

    The most common setup I'm seeing along the spine of the Blueridge among people who are winning/placing in Enduro races(or doing big backcountry rides) is Double Down with no inserts up front and EXO/FTD in the rear. The feedback from the FTD/EXO crowd is pretty valuable- most of them race on 2.3" tires and the combination between the supple casing and the absorption of the insert allows pro-fast people in the 165pound range to achieve low times with pressures in the 19-21 pound range without regularly destroying rims.

    Dealing with two massively different wheel weights takes some time, and it definitely requires adapting damper settings to compensate for the significant change in mass as your change casings and insert styles. The ride of the bike is significantly different(much quieter with better grip) running a FTD/Cushcore style insert. The Huck Norris is basically only there to keep you from destroying the rim with rim shots- but it also splay's the bead wider, helping to make it easier to setup some tire/rim/tape combos tubeless and keeping the tire on a little better if you need to finish out a descent on a flat.

    tl;dr conclusion:
    Mtb tires need to weigh a lot more, fast people ride 2.3" tires, fast people still destroy tires at an alarming rate even with hundreds of grams worth of crap shoved inside their tires.
    mickey.denoncourt

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    Default Re: Trail bike tires

    we're liking the Vittoria Martellos in 2.35 for around here on our 160mm travel Mondraker Dune RR.... they're so much better for around here than the Maxxis Holy Roller IIs that came on the bike.

    i just got some Martellos for the Foxy XR 29er- i'm excited about those too!
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    Default Re: Trail bike tires

    The Highroller 2 is a dog of a tire, for sure.
    I'm not sold on Vittoria MTB casings outside of xc use.
    They HAVE the technology, but it seems like the big bosses won't let the US design department make production tires at high enough price points to integrate the kinda stuff that progressive mountainbikers need.

    The world NEEDS some $85 Martello's
     

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