1. The most important thing about buying a new bike is to make sure it fits. The only way you'll know if the bike is right for you is to size up the bike and make sure that the bike's geometry matches your body's geometry. Ask questions and do some research.
mtn. biking 101
2. If possible, try to find a shop that will let you demo the bike on real dirt. Five minutes in a parking lot won't cut it. You wouldn't buy a car without a real world test drive, and a bike should be no different.
3. Don't belive the hype. Just because your favorite rider or best friend rides a certain bike, that doesn't mean that's the best one for you. Have an open mind and be realistic about your needs and ability.
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  1. #1
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    New question here. 38mm Tires OK for Mountain Biking?

    I bought a new bike, and while I mostly stay on roads, I was wondering if my 700x38c tires are considered wide enough to do some mountain biking (downhill trails with rocks, dirt, roots, grass etc).

    FYI:
    My Bike: Specialized Crosstrail Pro Disc
    My tires say 700x38c 38-622
    My wheels say 622x16c.


    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    That is a 1.5" tire. Norm is 2.25" or more, with 100mm fork. Your 50mm fork is not constructed for the conditions. You will be on the brakes all the time.

  3. #3
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    It would be incredibly sketchy to ride with 1.5" tires. Ive ridden a cross bike on pretty smooth singletrack. It was plenty doable but not fun, not compared to a mountain bike.

  4. #4
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    Nope, the smallest that I would be comfortable with is 1.9" and that will be on smooth singletrack, for rocks and other fun stuff at least 2.1".

  5. #5
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    [QUOTE=watsupbro;11276106]... some mountain biking (downhill trails with rocks, dirt, roots, grass etc).

    It all depends on how big the rocks and roots are of the dirt is loose or hardpack. Don't forget what the cyclocross guys ride.

    Cross Bikes on Singletrack - Post Your Photos
    Joe
    2003 KHS Alite 4000 26" Hardtail - XC, All mountain, blah blah blah.. I just ride.

  6. #6
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    Definitely not going to be doing anything extremely serious. What I'm looking to do are pretty simple off the road trails, and nothing with huge roots and lots of big rocks.

    Like this:
    http://images.singletracks.com/blog/...untain-mtb.jpg

  7. #7
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    You can ride that on dirt trails, just not downhill trails. I ride a GF mtn bike commuter with 25c tires on dirt trails all the time.

  8. #8
    'Tis but a scratch
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    It may not be the ideal tool for the job. But, if I had that bike and came across that trail, I would probably do it. My "road bike" is really a hybrid and it has 38's. Quite often, I will be going down the road and notice a trail I never knew existed. And off into the dirt I go. My Trek has no suspension fork. I stand more and yes, I have damaged some stuff. But, ride what you got. Just be careful you don't ride beyond your skills. As depicted above, there is somebody that can ride any terrain on any bike - it just may not be you (or me).
    Last edited by huffster; 06-20-2014 at 07:31 AM.

  9. #9
    Fat-tired Roadie
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    Considered by whom?

    I had 34s on my 'cross bike for a while. I took it on some of my regular trails for practice. It takes a lot more attention, and I had to go a little slower. I also put the nail in the coffin of the wheels. I do enjoy riding trails on my 'cross bike, but it's more of a see-if-I-can-do-it thing, not my usual choice.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  10. #10
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    I also don't see any reason not to ride a trail like that on pretty much any bike. Try it, keep your gear's limitations in mind and don't get crazy about things, have fun, and then if you find you really want to get more into mountain biking, consider getting a more specifically designed rig in the future.
    Sinister Bikes
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