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  1. #1
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    Scwalbe Nobby Nic vs. Racing Ralph

    About to pull the trigger on a new set of tires for my 29er build and debating on whether to go with Scwalbe's NN or RR for all around XC use. I have had good luck with RRs on my cross bike but it seems like the NNs might be a better XC choice for everyday riding? Will be riding tubless SS EVO version of either and I ride year round. I live in the North East about an hour south of Philadelphia and the trails I ride have some rock gardens, plenty of roots and some short steep climbs which might better suit the NN but there is also lots of hardpacked twisty single track where a RR might provide an advantage. Also interested in hearing opinions on tire width specifically whether to go with 2.25 or 2.35 or perhaps a 2.35 up front and 2.25 rear. This is my first 29er build so looking for suggestions from folks who have tried both tires. Will be my main everyday / training tire.

  2. #2
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    Unless I have to race super fast hard conditions, I will never run less then a NN anymore.

  3. #3
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    I ran the RR all last year and was very happy with the exception that when the trails were loose, I was wishing for more grip.
    Switched to the NN and although they're a tad bit heavier, I LOVE the traction! Running the 2.4 UST front and 2.25 rear....running tubeless and they set up very easily with just a floor pump

  4. #4
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    i have run both. there honestly isn't that much of a speed difference between the 2 and because of that, i would say get the NN hand's down. espeicially because you said it was for all year all types of riding.

  5. #5
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    Unless you plan on racing (and I am talking about specific conditions here too), then get the NN. Minor weight increase over the RR, but everything else is in the NN's favour.

  6. #6
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    Ra Ra 2.4 is a versatile tire with bigger tread than the 2.25. May be worth a look. Will float a lot in loose wet stuff but has good edge tread[ same as No Ni 2.25]. No Ni aren't that slow so if you have a lot of wet loose riding get the No Ni.In 26" I much prefer the 2.4 on the front but 29er 2.25 may be fine? They both like as low a pressure as possible for best traction. A Rampage will have better traction than both.

  7. #7
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    Thanks. Nobby Nic it is. Just need to decide on widths for F / R.

  8. #8
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    If you are a Clyde, get as big as you can in the NN... they run thinner than stated. I am running a 2.35 on the front of my WFO, it has a lot of grip and rolls fast too.

  9. #9
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    I find the RaRa's lot lot harsher than NoNi's and even the RoRo's (if any of that makes any sense?!) I currently run the Ralphs on the rear of my HT with a Ron on the front. On my Nickel I run a Nic on the front and Ron and the rear, I love this setup but when it starts getting into the grips of winter I will be running Nic's front and rear as they grip so well. I would also agree, as a clyde the Nic's are excellent.

    Before I sold my 29r I ran Little Alberts on it and although they gripped well they were low volume and on a rigid bike you could certainly tell the difference.

  10. #10
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    Knobby Nics

    Just went through this thinking the knobby nics were too heavy, so put on some RR's and went tubeless. First thing I noticed was how many little bleeds I had in the side walls of the RR's. Brand new and they tiny pinholes at least 3 or 4 a tire. Could not run w/o stan's sealant. Somewhat tricky to put on my rim, but used a compressor and they beaded up really well. Holy cow they took alot of rubber out of the sidewalls. Ran my race with no trouble, but next day they were flat in the garage. My knobby's ust, snakeskin easiest tire to make tubeless, used just a pump to put on rim and have had zero problems running them all spring, summer and also 8 races. Notice no difference in accelerating, grip, rolling in either tire having raced both and had to push them both hard. Both great tires, just don't need a "worry factor" on when the RR's will detonate on me. Running the 2.35 Knobby by the way and 2.25 RR.

  11. #11
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    I live and ride pretty close to where you describe - I have run a combo of the NN 2.25's Ra Ra 2.25 & 2.4 and Ro Ro 2.25- on a few different bikes and other than the 2.4 I do not like a Ra Ra up front- even on the smoothest fastest trails I prefer having a bit of extra confidence up front-

    I am currently running the Rocket Ron on the front of my HT with a Ra Ra 2.25 on the rear and a NN 2.25 up front with a Ra Ra 2.25 on the rear of my full squish- for the summer/fall the Ro Ro seems to work very well, surprisingly better than the Ra Ra as a front tire but does not offer as much traction as a NN (as one might expect). I breifly ran a set of NN 2.25's front and rear on my full squish but felt even the 2.25 was more tire than I like on the rear for 99% of what I ride so you could consider a Ra Ra snakeskin for the rear and a NN for the front? (have a 2.35 for the coming winter/spring but no time on it yet)

    the biggest issue with the NN is they do not like to be ridden on pavement all that much-

    Good Luck-
    I Just wish I could ride more!


  12. #12
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    I ran NN 2.25 up front from Feb to June on my 29er 1x9 HT, nice tire, decent rolling resistance for an otherwise nobby tire, but lean-in cornering was a problem for me, twitchy is the best word i can use to describe it. I played with psi alot but ultimately switched over to the RoRo 2.25 front in early July, instant improvement. still running a NN in back 24psi, great traction control. building a ss now probably starting with RoRo fr and rr.

  13. #13
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    where are you getting and how much are you guys paying for your nobby nics. i wanted to get some but it looks like 75 a tire is pretty much the going price, i have no idea why but if it was 60 i would already have got them but the stupid extra 15 bucks makes it a tough buy for me.

  14. #14
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    Thanks for all the feeback .... appreciate it!!

  15. #15
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    Running 2.35 NN's front & rear, bulldozer grip, confidence inspiring tubeless setup, expensive but worthy.

  16. #16
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    Pavement will eat a Nobby Nic up fast when run as a rear tire, too expensive for me to run one out back with some of the rides I do having some pavement. Does fine up front though a bit noisy.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by chestercospinner View Post
    I ran NN 2.25 up front from Feb to June on my 29er 1x9 HT, nice tire, decent rolling resistance for an otherwise nobby tire, but lean-in cornering was a problem for me, twitchy is the best word i can use to describe it. I played with psi alot but ultimately switched over to the RoRo 2.25 front in early July, instant improvement. still running a NN in back 24psi, great traction control. building a ss now probably starting with RoRo fr and rr.
    My experience too. I'm a clyde and ride a bike with a slack HA. The front--Nic 2.35--washes out on me all the time. Changed pressures, tried to weight the front...etc. Not a fan, but could be that my size, bike set-up and riding style just don't to seem to mesh with the tire. Let us know how the tire works for you.
    Last edited by Slow Danger; 09-07-2011 at 09:13 PM.

  18. #18
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    i have NN up front and ralphs in the rear amazing setup for lower michigan single track

  19. #19
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    ^^ Racing Ralph R / Nobby Nic F is a popular combo around these parts as well.

    I have run both and they are kickass tires, hard to go wrong either way. That being said I'm on the Nobby Nics F/R right now and they're great tubeless.

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