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  1. #1
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    Dear FL 29er Riders

    I'm building up a demo 29er bike, what tires should I spec? I'd rather not go wider than 2.25", but it gets pretty sandy here. Price is no matter. Quality prevails. I personally ride a 650B and use the Pacenti Neo-Moto and Quasi Moto. The Neo is inspired by the Panaracer Rampage and the Nevegal. I'm sure it would be safe to use either of these, but I want some more opinions.

  2. #2
    Missouri sucks...
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    I'm not a FL rider but I would think the 2.25" Racing Ralph and Nobby Nic should be considered.

  3. #3
    I hate that name.
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    yo Jeremy

    I've always been a fan of narrowish with aggressive knobs, 26 or 29. I rode/raced on Ignitors for a while, circa 2007, best option for me when there weren't a lot of skinny big knob 29s out there. I've used Bonty Jones ACX quite a bit, mainly because I've got 4 of them hanging around; a workhorse tire, long life, grips ok, but feels slow. Panaracer Fire XC, my longtime favorite, works about the same in 29 (Interloc) as in 26. Those are what I've been on the longest, even had it on the front of the 69er. I'm trying something new as of a month ago with the new Bonty 29-4 front and a Schwalbe Albert rear. The 29-4 is nice but huge. Claimed 2.3 but at least a half inch wider than the 2.25 29-3. I was going to use it on both ends but it rubbed the chainstay a bit under power. It feels grippy but not as slow as the size would imply. The Schwalbe is a typical skinny big knob, but I can't recommend it tubeless. We tried on a customer's SF100 and just couldn't get it to stop leaking. The sidewalls are pretty thin. I've only got one ride, at Boyette, on that set up since I crashed and hurt my hand and haven't ridden since.
    Worked at Trek/Fisher dealer 2008-2013. Only a little biased.

  4. #4
    Space Ghost
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    Jeremy, I have run Rampages, Ignitors, Aspens, and Racing Ralphs. My favorite by far for Fl riding (Alafia, Boyette, Carter, Santos, San Felasco) is the 2.25 RR. I didn't like them on my C29's, but love them on my Flows. The Ignitors are the closest second and a great all around tire. The RRs have better float and are considerably faster (and lighter). If you want a skinny (2.1) tire with great traction, the Ignitor is hard to beat. The Rampage is more than you need here, in my humble opinion. The Aspen is great for a rear tire if you stick to XC and even then, I hated it as a front tire (wash out). I ran an Ignitor up front and an Aspen rear for a while, but went back to the Ignitors. Then got the RR's for $100 shipped and will likely never go back. Money no object, I would pony up for the snakebite or snakeskin or whatever they call the tougher ones. I have to run my at 28psi rear and 26 front or they squish a bit when I air it out, or corner hard and fast. I am 205-210 with gear and on a Bander HT.
    "No good deed goes unpunished"

  5. #5
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    Jeff, I'll swing by to talk shop and check out your tire inventory.

  6. #6
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    I am in the Tampa area. And I have noticed the racing ralphs becoming a lot more popular as well as the stans raven... I am currently have a 2.1 nano raptor in the front and hutch. Python in the back 2.1.

  7. #7
    Never Satisfied...
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    I'm in South Fla and mainly ride Markham Park (rocky, rooty, and loose sand in some areas).....

    I've been pretty happy with Ignitor 2.10's front/rear tubeless (~30) psi on Flows, but I will be switching to a Small Block 8 for the rear as soon as this rear Ignitor dies....

    Good luck...

  8. #8
    Trail Junkie
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    I also live in S. FL and ride it all, and often travel to Alafia,Balm, and Carter and Santos (heart Vortex). For 29er tires, I like Maxxis Ikon 2.2 EXO..they are brand new for this fall. Racing Ralphs are solid but expensive (I know you said price doesn't matter). Another solid combo which I found to work not only well here but everywhere I have ever ridden in the U.S. (Originally from Michigan, grew up in Texas, and was stationed in Europe, travel to Arkansas, Colorado, Utah, Arizona, and New Mexico) is the Maxxis Ignitor EXO and a Maxxis Crossmark rear. If you are seeing yourself riding wet stuff, I would stay with Ikons (for wet or dry) or move to a Continental Race king rear..and maybe a Continental Mountain King front.

    If you race on a consistent basis, use Racing Ralphs or Maxxis Ikons EXO exclusively front and rear!

    A big question I have is if it is a hardtail or full sus. I am guessing if it is a demo..its going to be a Hardtail. In that case, Racing Ralphs or Maxxis Ikons EXO all the way!
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  9. #9
    Expert Crasher
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    +2 for the IKONs here in SoFlo.
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  10. #10
    Nouveau Retrogrouch SuperModerator
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cracked Headtube
    I'm building up a demo 29er bike, what tires should I spec? I'd rather not go wider than 2.25", but it gets pretty sandy here. Price is no matter. Quality prevails. I personally ride a 650B and use the Pacenti Neo-Moto and Quasi Moto. The Neo is inspired by the Panaracer Rampage and the Nevegal. I'm sure it would be safe to use either of these, but I want some more opinions.
    I find the Racing Ralph to do pretty well in sandy conditions. It is also available in 650B if you want to be able to make more direct comparisons.
    mtbtires.com
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by shiggy
    I find the Racing Ralph to do pretty well in sandy conditions. It is also available in 650B if you want to be able to make more direct comparisons.
    Yeah I have them in 650B. I like them well enough, but with some many folks cutting the sidewalls on the 650B I use them the least of my tires. I am aware that the 29 version is also available with a tougher sidewall. So I am not opposed to them for this build. I am beginning to lean towards some Maxxis rubber as I haven't used the brand in nearly 5 years.
    you folks have given me some nice ideas.

  12. #12
    Nouveau Retrogrouch SuperModerator
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cracked Headtube
    Yeah I have them in 650B. I like them well enough, but with some many folks cutting the sidewalls on the 650B I use them the least of my tires. I am aware that the 29 version is also available with a tougher sidewall. So I am not opposed to them for this build. I am beginning to lean towards some Maxxis rubber as I haven't used the brand in nearly 5 years.
    you folks have given me some nice ideas.
    I still do not understand why some riders cut tires so easily while others (like me) can ride the same tires on the same trails with no problems.
    mtbtires.com
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  13. #13
    I hate that name.
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    Quote Originally Posted by shiggy
    I still do not understand why some riders cut tires so easily while others (like me) can ride the same tires on the same trails with no problems.
    User error. I'm bad about cutting turns too short around rocks. I usually wear the sidewalls thin well before the tread wears out.
    Worked at Trek/Fisher dealer 2008-2013. Only a little biased.

  14. #14
    Trail Ninja
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    Quote Originally Posted by blunderbuss
    User error. I'm bad about cutting turns too short around rocks. I usually wear the sidewalls thin well before the tread wears out.
    Bleh... User error, eh? It's more fun to plow through instead of tip toeing around obstacles for me. Cutting the inside apex in a corner is the best line to take to maintain good speed and if the rocks don't pose a spoke breaking danger, I plow through. To avoid groups of [insignificantly sized] rocks and corner wide, you'd need to slow down so much to avoid rocks and make the corner that it'd be quite pitiful. I only really watch out for a huge piles of poo or something relatively nasty that you don't want flung up in your face...

    My SB8's sidewall got 3 small rips in under 200 miles (rear wheel) of NY terrain and they slipped going up "pebbly" 5% inclines when wet. They're still usable in their current form, but I certainly was not impressed. Works well for dryt stuff without rocks very well I'd imagine. Fast like slicks, but decent grip.

    I dislike Nevegals and SB8 due to the flimsy sidewalls. The Ikon EXO seems to behave fairly well. I like 'em much more than 2.4 and 2.2 Conti MKs. Bontys latest offerings are good too. Heck, I rode slicks in FL with 40 psi on a singlespeed (commuter mode) and hung with the FS riders np and also in NY, outlasting them too. Couldn't keep up with my buddy whom I sold my Homegrown to though.
    Last edited by Varaxis; 12-26-2010 at 04:25 PM.

  15. #15
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    I ride RR 2.25 front and rear on mine and they do great on all the trails. Even that damn sugar sand.

  16. #16
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    i ride markham and oleta and i am running 2.3 WTB exiwolfs..... no problems at all with traction....

  17. #17
    Fast bike-slow rider
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    I am in Gainesville and ride the tried and true Ignitor- Front/Crossmark-rear combo. That has proved to be great for Santos- including the more tech trails, San Felasco and the other Fl. trails I have ridden. They grip well and roll pretty well.
    Jesse
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  18. #18
    Trail Junkie
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    The Ignitor / Crossmark is a very tried and true combo. The Ikon is brand new for this year and will probably give the Crossmark a run for its money..its quite a bit lighter tire. I have it in the 29 version and its stellar. I have used Crossmarks for many years, and really the only complaint is the weight..but they are super durable!
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  19. #19
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    I know a guy who swears by Crossmark/Ignitor, except he runs Crossmark front, Ignitor back. He rides an ss hardtail, Fisher Rig.
    Worked at Trek/Fisher dealer 2008-2013. Only a little biased.

  20. #20
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    Right now I have a set of the System 29 from Intense Tyre. I'm going to start with those then likely put the Ikons in the bike. Keep up with this great info, the bike isn't yet completed, so there is plenty of time to get more votes in!

  21. #21
    Trail Ninja
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cracked Headtube
    ...likely put the Ikons in the bike.
    The thing about Ikon EXOs is that you really can't say anything about them. They're relatively light, durable, have decent grip for how small the knobs are, work alright for most conditions and aren't too horrible in certain conditions. It's just a sweet middle of the road tire that slightly emphasizes lightweight and rolling speed without sacrificing too much grip and durability and aren't flimsy.They don't come UST, but convert to tubeless with sealant fine which ends up being lighter than an UST setup.

  22. #22
    Its got what plants crave
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    I've been running a Nevegal front and SB8 rear. Rolls fast and still pretty good traction except when things get loose, or you're riding leaves over hardpack.
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