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DH'ers AM/Trail/Enduro tire

Discussion in 'Downhill & Freeride' started by Rhubarb, Nov 20, 2012.

  1. Rhubarb New Member

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    Guys,

    I really need some help picking out some tires for a new build. Still love to ride DH but after a year of desert riding I have really enjoyed pedalling again and see myself definately moving more towards Super D, AM and enduro type stuff. Basicaly drive up, throw on my lid and ride. Getting a little tired of always pushing 45 minutes up to ride DH and just dont feel I am getting time on my bike. I feel tires and brakes are crucial to me feeling confident so I dont want to screw up my tire choice. I run Minion dual plys on my DH bike and love em. On my FR do all bike I have loved Muddy Mary FR casing for a front tire but destroyed any Schwalbe on the rear. This past year I have been on Minion Exos and the drop in weight has been great and they suited the lose conditions perfectly. Now I am back home where conditions are more hard pack, a little lose over hard pack, lots of roots and rocks and with summer here and surface is gravel it will be mostly dry conditions. I am looking for light weight, fast rolling tires that will still give confidence since I will be hammering up the XC trails and bombing down the DH runs.

    My priority is to have an aggresive front tire that is light and rolls well. I am not convinced the Ardent is for me and the HR 2 in ST/3C is out of stock, dont run 60A in the front. So far I have found:
    Schwalbe Hans Dampf trails star 2.4" - great reviews, tubeless ready
    Rubber Queen BC 2.4" - mixed reviews
    Minion Exo ST - a tire I know but would like something faster and more suited to the rear choices below

    Really struggling for a rear tire. I need something that will handle fast riding through rocks but roll faster that the Minions. Again no Scwalbe on the rear for me. Durability is very important since I need to ride some tarmac to reach local trails if I plan to cover weekly milage and not always drive out to the local trail center. I dont like High Rollers on the rear because they wear too fast. I need a tire that has some breaking abilities and grips when leaned over but I am not worried if it is a little lose, I like to slide and steer with the back. What I can see as options:
    Rubber Queen 2.2" in BC UST - 2.4" will be too big I am sure and maybe uneccessary.
    Larrsen TT 2.35" Dual Ply 60A. Ridden a Larrsen on the trails a coupel of years ago but now on my track bike.
    Bronson AM 2.30" TCS - dont know anything about this tire but looks like it would work on the back and suit the fr4ont tires mentioned above

    We all know the price of tires so I dont want to dump cash on a tire that will suck. I have Minion Exos for my FR bike to use away from home in very mixed conditions. I have Dual ply Minions for my DH bike. I just dont have anything lying around to put on the new build so any help will be great. I will set these up tubeless and run around 27-28Psi front and 29-32Psi rear.
    #1
  2. b.utters Member

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    You want something that doesn't exist.
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  3. FlipSide Member

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    I would advise a Rubber Queen BC 2.2 front and rear. They are already quite big for a 2.2 and they are quite a bit lighter than the 2.4. 850 grams for the 2.2 and 1100 g for the 2.4 (both UST version) if I remember correctly.

    This is what I run and I absolutely love this setup. I already tried the 2.4 up front and the weight penalty is seriously noticeable for trail riding. I will put this 2.4 on the rear of my DH bike next season. It will be better suited for lift-assisted enduro-type riding, compared to pedal-powered climbing and general trail riding. :)
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2012
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  4. chillindrdude Active Member

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    Schwalbe Hans Dampf hands down. Amazing grip. Wears well. Pricey, but performs.
    #4
  5. Rhubarb New Member

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    How do the RQ 2.2s size up to a minion 2.35 or 2.5? I found the HR and Minion 2.35" to be a little small. I like a little meat to have the Xtra suspension front and back but mainly to save my rear rim. I have a 2.35" Larrsen and 2.25" Advantage on my track bike and they seem to have more volume than a 2.35" Minion rear I had some time ago.

    Chillindrdude - you run a Hans on the rear? How did it last. I have run BBs and a WW on the rear and aggresive riding/breaking on hard pack seems to chew them up. Ran a MM up front till it was about 60% done and threw it out back and the wear rate was bad. I find Schwalbes dont wear down so much as brake up - ripped chunks to whole knobbies. The siping seems to have a big part in this from what I can see.

    One of the thinks I have notice about Minions is they really wear down well. My Larrsen also wears down evenly but the advantage is okay out front but on the rear also suffered from aggresive riding. The Advantag makes a nice front tire but the single ply is thin. HRs dont break down but wear fast.

    The Black Chilli compound gets great reviews for durability.
    #5
  6. FlipSide Member

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    RQ 2.2 UST on Flow: 2.28" (casing...which is wider than the outer knob)
    Minion 2.5 DHF UST on 721: 2.18 (casing), 2.35 (outer knobs)

    Measured with a cheapo but relatively reliable electronic caliper (i.e.: not a Mitutoyo ;) )

    I don't have the measurement for the mounted 2.4.

    I concur for the nice wearing of the Black Chili compound. It is quite remarkable actually!
    #6
  7. chillindrdude Active Member

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    The latest compound of the Hans damp (trailstar I think?) Wears better than the previous iteration. I also agree that the black chili compound is amazingly durable. I ran RB/DK combo on my dh bike and was impressed by their grip and durability, which I thought was mutually exclusive. The only reason I stopped running contis were their rarity. It was hard to find us retailers with them in stock.
    #7
  8. saruti Member

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    Hi
    I 'm just in your situation
    Past six months enjoys riding AM
    I'm on a hi roller 2.35 front and back. Ghetto tubeless.
    Probably will try the ONZA IBEX 2.2 soon. They are lighter and on my DH bikes they feel great. (2.4 on the DH bike)
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  9. RoboS Member

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    Hans Dampf for sure. Rolling resistance is just like my Ardents 2.25 60a, but Hans got a lot more grip and protection. I've been riding all season on them and had only 1 snakebite. And it can be bought as set (front and rear) for a great price on www.bike-components.de
    #9
  10. cecil Member

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    Panaracer fire fr they are cheap they grip and wear great
    #10
  11. Huck Banzai Active Member

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    ^^^ This cubed.

    Also:

    15 year old tread - mega grip. Mega knobby with super rolling resistance, but if you want the grip BOOM.
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2012
    #11
  12. marshalolson Active Member

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    you want a 2.1 kenda happy medium UST rear tire for fast/hardpack, and a kenda BBG 2.1 ust for rough/rocky riding.

    combine with a BBG 2.35 front tire for super shredding.

    best trail tires on the market for dry conditions. rock 2.5 DHF front and rear in the wet.
    #12
  13. Cant Climb Active Member

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    I was in similiar boat.

    I run Conti Baron 2.3 (apex sidewall) front and rear.
    But will on occasion run the HR 2.35 Dual ply on the rear.
    The conti's are excellent, not sure about the rolling resistance part though.......seems ok.

    One tire that i found but have yet to try is the Bontrager FR3.
    Supposedly the rolling resistance is great because of the center knob ridge....
    #13
  14. norbar Active Member

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    I've had huge problems with mounting schwalbes tubeless on ztr flows. Had to use a tube
    #14
  15. slyfink Active Member

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    with a floor pump or a compressor? I've found Schwalbe and Special-Ed tires to be the easiest to mount on Flow and i23 rims. My Flow EX has been a little trickier.

    re the Hans Dampf, I completely destroyed a trailstar HD in the rear in less than a month in rocky terrain (riding 2x/week in the wet rocky rooty north east). I tore off the knobs. I've been using a pacestar compound HD on my front wheel for the whole season, and just did 7 straight days of riding 4-6 hrs/day in Phoenix, Sedona and Flagstaff, and almost no visible signs of wear. I think it would be superb as a rear tire, I'm just far too pleased with it on the front to swap it out to the rear wheel.

    I've been having issues with cutting sidewalls of the rear tire this year, so I've gone to a full DH-casing 2.35 High Roller on the back. Mounted to a Flow EX, it's been great tubeless, including said vacation to AZ last week. I needed my compressor to mount it, and had to remove the valve core to get it to seat. It's been bombproof compared to the Trailstar HD, Pacestar Fat Albert, Spec Purgatory, and WTB Moto I used this summer. And it's only 150-200g heavier than those tires. I'll take the weight penalty for the stronger sidewalls.

    Another tire to consider is the Super Gravity HD in the pacestar compound....
    #15
  16. Rhubarb New Member

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    cheers for the feedback guys.
    If I had asked this question some years back I would have been all over the place on this. Having ridden alot in South Africa, the desserts of the UAE and forrests of South Korea I think I understand more about various conditions and tire choice. In the dessert the conditionas were crazy lose but the rocks were insanely sharp. I barely survived with Minion Exo front and rear but the Wicked Will was destryed in no time. In Korea it is super loamy, soft when dry and like grease when went - Muddy Mary front and minion rear or I did really well on Swampthings. Cape Town has the best conditions because it handles the dry and the wet, Minions or HR are perfect.
    There are other tires out there bu I need to chose what I can buy online. So if I ignore any suggestions its because I cant get them.

    So it sounds like I may be going with a Hans Dampf for the front and just need to decide on a rear. I may try a RQ 2.2" UST and then I have some tires to play with. I still think the Bronson looks like a suitable rear choice. I am nervous to try another Schwalbe on the rear. The tarmac and hardback with possible heavy breaking is just what kills Schwalbes in my opinion. Tempted by a dual ply Larrsen cause they on special and about half the price of any other tires on this list. I will always run the most aggresive front I can get away with and as much volume as needed, hence my apprehension to put a RQ 2.2" up there. The Baron looks like I could just run a Minion Exo, of course I may be wrong.
    #16
  17. FCLinder New Member

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    Continental Trail King 2.2 is by far the best ALL MT/Enduro tire I have ever spent time on. The tire to me grips like their DH tires and light for a All Mt setup. I have been on them for 2 seasons now and have yet to have a problem.

    Good luck with what ever you choose,
    Cecil
    #17
  18. wiscodh Member

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    bronsons were scary when a little moisture hit the soil. Not much better when dry. I like square profiles. Really need dhr2's in 2.35 casings!
    #18
  19. Huck Banzai Active Member

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    For the Hans - go with trailstar front, pacestar rear - as noted somewhere above.

    if it tends to be drier, then you pacestar on both ends, slippery is the norm? Trailstar both ends.



    The Fire XC pro will last forever and seems to grip no matter what, and doesnt hate to be run low psi for those occasions. But again - the tread is knobblywobbly - ride em on pavement and hear the roar!
    #19
  20. milohead New Member

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    Surprised no one has mentioned Specialized Purgatory's. I got a set barley used from a buddy LAST August (14 months ago) and they have held up exceptionally well. Front is still about 80% and back is just ready to be replaced. I ride about twice a week.
    #20
  21. Sonic Reducer New Member

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    I run the 1ply 2.4 RQ's and like them quite a bit. more cushion for the pushin. they don't feel that heavy to me but I run mtx33's so my rotating weight is high anyway. they hook up well enough.
    in the summer sometimes I run a small block 8 on back and a highroller 2.35 1 ply front.
    #21
  22. canadmos Active Member

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    I'm happy with using my monster truck 2.4 3c Ardent tires on my trail bike. Have them mounted on MTX 29 rims. Yep, these things are big and heavy, but I've never had a flat and they sound really cool while cruising to the beer store on the sidewalk. They have also lasted longer than I thought they would.
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2012
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  23. Rhubarb New Member

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    sounds like I cant go wrong with a Hans on the front and 2.2 RQ ust out back. I get to try 2 great tires and the chance to try the RQ up front with the Larrsen I have out back - even if its for trial and error. If the RQ gives me the confidence I need then I can run 2.2 front and back. This rig will not be a trail bike really, we just dont have real trail type rides close to my house and I hate to drive far for a ride. Just cuts into family time. Localy its more slog it up and then fast and nasty down so I will still need sufficient volume front and back.
    #23
  24. JustMtnB44 Member

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    I have Conti Trail King (Rubber Queen) 2.4 front and 2.2 rear on my Spitfire. This is a good combo for most conditions except for mud. If it is really slick or greasy they slide around more than I would like. But in any combination of dry, loose, hardpack, or loam they work really well. The black chili rubber is not as sticky as a Maxxis super tacky rubber, but it wears much better. After two seasons of use the Trail Kings are barely worn.
    #24
  25. Turbo302 New Member

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    I'm running a Hans Dampf Pacestar in the front and Nobby Nic rear. I think its a good combo.
    #25
  26. sbabuser Member

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    I have no idea why anyone would run a 850g 2.2. DHF Exo 2.5's weigh that much. I'm back on them after half a season on Bronson 2.3's, which is the first WTB tire I've really been disappointed in. Weak construction, and the 2.3 is smaller than I can comfortably ride on descents. Looks like WTB is phasing out all the tires with any real volume, which means they're dead to me. I want to try some Hans Dampfs, but they're way too spendy. I can buy tires for my car for what they retail for - WTF??
    #26
  27. chillindrdude Active Member

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    Arts cyclery online coupon code: blackfriday 25% off most stuff. Including them pricey schwalbe tires. Sorry to spam, but wanted to pass on a decent deal
    #27
  28. dilzy New Member

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    I absolutely love my Ardents, if you can afford them, the 3c are even better, but I just wish they came in a straight super tacky.
    #28
  29. Verskis Member

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    I have exactly the same experiences with the 2.4" Rubber Queen on the front. There may be better tires for each specific condition, but the RQ works really well in everything but real mud.

    I'm still thinking about going for Mountain King II for weight savings over the RQ. Anybody know if the Black Chili compound is the same on these two, or is the MK II harder than RQ?
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2012
    #29
  30. General Lee New Member

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    I saw a 2014 all mtn/enduro racing tire last week from Geax (yeah, don't laugh) that looks the business. It'll probably even pass the Kidwoo test. Unfortunately I can't say more than that, not even a looks-like-a-, without getting yelled at and pictures were out of the question. 2014 sounds like a long way off but for sure this is a segment of the market that tire manufacturers are paying attention too.
    #30
  31. motomike Active Member

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    #31
  32. slyfink Active Member

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    any feedback on Conti's "Apex" sidewalls? After gashing 4 rear tires this season, I've come to the realization that I need a properly reinforced sidewall for my rear tires. I'm currently running a 2.35 full dh-casing HighRoller, but it's not a very good xc tire for the wet season here in the North East - I find it lacking in climbing ability over wet rocks and such. Which is fine, that's not what it's meant for.

    So I am seriously considering a Continental Baron 2.3 Black Chili. I would have liked to try the Rubber Queen (Trail King), but I don't really want to go full 2.4 to get the Apex sidewall. And it seems the Baron has that sidewall. So... any experience with it?
    #32
  33. Rhubarb New Member

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    Stopped by a local shop here in Korea cause I remembered they carried Schwalbe when I was here a year ago. Seems they have established themsleves nicely and carry a full selection. I can pick up my Muddy Mary for next Spring/Summer wet season and right now they have Hans Dampf in both Trailstar and Pacestar compounds. The price beats CRC so I might just go with a set of these.

    Looked at Michlins on CRC and have to say at least the prices are a little more agreeable, just not a full selection to choose from. Couple of years ago tire prices seemed acceptable, could pick up Minions or HRs in the 20 pound range. Now the prices really are hard to swallow. Front tires not so bad but a rear can get chewed up pretty quick. Then there are condition changes needing other tires. Loving Cape Town because the trails can handle the wet and dry so one set of rubber will see you right. In Korea its impossible to keep up - variety of trail surfaces with wet, dry, loose, hardpack and freezing.

    Thanks for all the input again and this is a big market that bike and component manufacturers are realising so its exciting times. Still have 2 weeks before I can ride again but a new rig and summer in Cape Town so I am surely jumping like a little kid.
    #33
  34. Salami Active Member

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    Have you been using this size?

    Tire has gotten my interest but I can find much reviews from actual use.
    #34
  35. Jeremy R <b>x</b>

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    Get the 2.35 version. That was the one designed help from Barel and Nico. It has way blockier knobs than the rest of the options, and looks more like a dh tire. I run the 2.25 standard version and it gives a fast rolling round profile, but I am betting that 2.35 tire (which is weirdly a little smaller than my tires) would dig into the ground better. I am getting those next after seeing them on Mike's bike.
    #35
  36. Salami Active Member

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    Huh? The 2.35 GripR is smaller than the 2.25?

    I was thinking the 2.35 on the front and the 2.25 on the rear, both Advanced versions. I have heard the 2.35's are 950 grams, a bit more tire than I want for the rear.


    Was also thinking about 2.3 Butcher front/Purgatory rear Controls but the Butcher is not available to at least late January.
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2012
    #36
  37. motomike Active Member

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    That's because the 2.35 has a much thicker, reinforced sidewall and like Jeremy said, the knobs are WAY blockier. They corner amazingly, and the durometer is a bit softer than the other versions.
    #37
  38. Salami Active Member

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    Are you running the 2.35's front and rear?
    #38
  39. dondon New Member

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    The combo with the most top level enduro wins (multiple mega, Mt Hell, Super Enduro, French Enduro Series, Trans Provence, CWX, Enduro Nations) is 2.4 Ardent Front and 2.35 Larsen TT DH rear. Both run tubeless. As run by Jerome, Remy and a couple of other top riders with "other" tire sponsors. This doesn't mean its for you and there are more and more choices every season.
    #39
  40. djjohnr Member

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    Tubeless question - are the pros who run Flows using rim strips or just tape with UST tires?
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2012
    #40