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Thread: Maxxis Assegai 2.5WT MaxxTerra Exo+

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    Default Maxxis Assegai 2.5WT MaxxTerra Exo+

    Let me start by saying that for most of the past year, I've been running an Aggressor/DHF combo with the Maxx Grip compound. The Aggressor rolls pretty well in most conditions but tends to pack up if the mud gets sticky. As far as I'm concerned, the DHF in Maxx Grip is the gold standard by which all tires should be judged. They're a bit of a tractor tire if you're climbing roads or hardpack, but the downhill cornering grip is undeniable and always predictable until you get into a deep muddy situation that might call for a spike tire. The only ding I have for this combo is that they wear out fairly quickly. Of the 12 months they were installed on my bike, I didn't ride for eight of them. So with four months of wear, the inside edges of the cornering knobs were tearing deeper and deeper and they were allowing me to drift more than I'd prefer while cornering.

    I'd read good things about the Assegai tires and it was enough to convince me to give them a shot. I've only had them on for a few weeks and maybe 200 miles of trail, but their nature is apparent enough to me that I feel safe writing a little about them. The conditions at my normal riding area when I installed them were basically hero dirt that drifts towards loose over hard when it starts to dry out. Basically, anything in the shade was good to go and anything in the sun, which seems to be most of the corners, is hard pack with a loose layer of dirt and fine gravel on top. The lowest section of trail, which happens to be more of a flow trail, has a pretty thick tree canopy and doesn't dry out as quickly.

    On my first ride, I was very pleasantly surprised at how much quieter they are than the DHF/Aggressor on road and hardpack and generally amazed at what a difference having supported side knobs makes. It took me a while to warm up and trust the tires in the turns, but after I committed, they held up very nicely in all the loamy, dry and loose over hard trail surfaces. On some of the fast and rocky trails, I felt like I was getting pinged around more than I usually do, but my assumption at the time was that the 25psi I use in the DHF with an EXO casing might be too much for the slightly stiffer EXO+ casing. I found it to drift very predictably in loose, flat turns. Just as I was really starting to trust the front tire, everyone lost interest in riding as a steady drizzle set in. We headed to the lower exit trail, which is definitely more of a flowy trail with some hardpacked built up berms. I took a right hander, completely lost the front end and low-sided. I was puzzled, but didn't dwell too hard on it.

    For most of the past week and a half I was down near Santa Cruz where everything was dry. Again, mostly either hard pack, loose over hard and a very small percentage of loam on some cheeky trails in the Nisene Marks that was so soft that I thought I had double flats. No complaints at all about tire performance there. Practically all the trails I rode were buffed out, no rocks to speak of and only a little bit of rooty riding in the Wilder Ranch/UCSC area.

    What a difference conditions make! My first ride back home is what prompted me to even consider writing about these tires. I aired them down just to 24psi but there was a steady drizzle all morning and I could not get the bike to track where I wanted it to go. When it's just a little bit wet, these tires slide off of every little angled rock and root they hit. They were both skittering around and I had to consciously slow down. I wasn't having fun so I bailed after one lap up top and packed it in. When I got to the lower trail, I noticed how little grip they had on the hardpacked section. My assumption is that because this area gets so much traffic, the rubber layer that gets laid down (you can see the dark streak) on the hardpack gets pretty slick. It's never been an issue with the Aggressor/DHF with the Gripp compound but these Assagai's are not confidence inspiring in these specific conditions and they're coming off.
    Sean Chaney
    www.vertigocycles.com
    a peek behind the curtain

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    Default Re: Maxxis Assegai 2.5WT MaxxTerra Exo+

    Update: This tire in the MaxxTerra compound is utter crap in wet conditions. It's not even suitable as a rear tire in the wet.
    Sean Chaney
    www.vertigocycles.com
    a peek behind the curtain

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