Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 30
  1. #1
    Singletrackmac
    Reputation: singletrackmack's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Posts
    371

    Shouldn't bigger riders ride bigger tires?

    I was reading some threads on recommended tires for clydes and was amazed to see that there are guys +230lb riding 1.9" to 2.2" tires. Being +240lb I have always run the biggest tires that my bikes would allow since my weight warrants the need for extra traction for cornering, braking and climbing as well as the need of a bigger tire to run a reasonably low PSI to maximize these needs. I realize the bigger tire adds some extra weight, but at +230lb who cares about a few hundred grams?

    I see there are threads in the clyde forum regarding our extra weight from how big of fork stations are needed, to using a coil over instead of an air shock, FS bikes that can handle the extra weight, what wheel set is ideal for a large guy, how big of brake discs are needed, even what saddle is best for a clyde. Yet their doesn't seem to be much concern with regards to our extra weight and the one part on the bike that connects us to the earth.

    Shouldn't our heavier weight have something to do with our choice in tire size like it does with other parts on the bike i.e. the more we weigh the bigger the tire is needed? Or have I been running bigger, heavier tires all this time for no good reason?
    Get out of the gutter and onto the mountain top.

    "I only had like two winekills captain buzzcooler"

  2. #2
    R.I.P. DogFriend
    Reputation: jeffj's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    6,039
    The one variable in that equation I see increased, rather than tire size, is tire pressure.

    I know that when I went to 29" wheels, I could run narrower tires with less prodigious knobs, and still expect to get similar traction.

    As a pretty good sized clyde, I find that I don't like tires with tall side knobs (especially softer knobs), even when smaller riders find them OK on the same trails I ride. I find that I can feel the tall side knobs squirming and folding over, especially in off camber corners on hardpacked surfaces, which is less than inspiring to say the least.

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Nubster's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Posts
    4,118
    260 pounds riding 2.1 tires no problems. You'd think that a few hundred grams don't matter at out weight and on the bike, probably not. On the wheels, you'll more likely feel it.
    Quote Originally Posted by Psycle151 View Post
    Friggin' coward. Give me a red chiclet instead of debating like a man. You don't deserve your green blocks.

  4. #4
    roots, rocks, rhythm
    Reputation: Dawgprimo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    562
    The way I look at it is:
    The smaller the tire the more pressure one has put in to work well and not get flats or snake bites or or feel unstable in cornering.
    Positive part- Lighter in weight and in feel, more XC.

    The larger volume tire gives you more surface area depending on tire pressure on the ground and gives you more options as to how much pressure also before you get worried about flats, snake bite and that sort of issues.
    Negative part -Heavier in weight and feel and more freeride or DH.

    I ride with the big tires up and down as I find it a better ride and worth the sacrifice for the up hill. I ride 26 inch wheels.

    Just my 0.02 cents

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation: tigris99's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    2,468
    im 270lbs and ride my 29er with 2.0 rear and 2.2 front. Never been lacking on traction. Actually the added body weight requires less tire for same traction in the rear. Front on the other hand you dont need the biggest tire you can, just tire with tread pattern to fit your trails/riding style.

    As for use of adjustment and performance on air pressure, youll get the same effects regardless of weight with more pressure than some avg sized rider does. Dont think about the numbers on the pressure gauge, just adjust pressures till tire performs as you want.
    Trek Marlin 29er

    Like It, Love It, Want Some More Of It!

  6. #6
    roots, rocks, rhythm
    Reputation: Dawgprimo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    562
    Quote Originally Posted by tigris99 View Post
    As for use of adjustment and performance on air pressure, youll get the same effects regardless of weight with more pressure than some avg sized rider does. Dont think about the numbers on the pressure gauge, just adjust pressures till tire performs as you want.
    I agree with what you say as there is not a lot of difference between a 2.1 to a 2.35 but there are many factors that one has to consider when deciding what to use for a tire like wheel size, type of riding, type of trails, conditions and a few more that I can't think of or am forgetting.

    For me I go with the feel of the tire for pressure and have always found the bigger the tire I use the softer the ride. I use to run 2.2 on a bike that I considered my XC bike (more flats... pinches...tire slashes) but now prefer using 2.35. Yes I get flats still. For me it felt more stable and the tread was better for the riding I do and conditions.
    A straight out XC ride you will be fine with a 2.0 - 2.1 tire.
    I don't ride XC strictly. Not in British Columbia where I ride.

  7. #7
    mbtr member
    Reputation: scottzg's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Posts
    3,091
    Try nixing the high volume tires in favor of ones with stiff sidewalls. You can still run lower pressures but they don't flop around on the rim, so you can really corner. UST XC tires with tubes can be an eye opener for 250lb dudes.
    .

  8. #8
    Singletrackmac
    Reputation: singletrackmack's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Posts
    371
    Thanks for all the input. The reason I asked is cause I recently switched from running 2.35" maxxis dhf/dhr on 18mm inner width rims at about 25/30 psi front/back to some very wide ITS 2.5" tires front/back on 23mm inner width front rims and 27mm inner width rear rims at about 17psi both front and back. The grip in the corners now seems endless and the increase in braking traction is night and day.

    This dramatic improvement in performance made me think that I had not been running tires big enough for my weight and figured other Clyde's would have had the same experience. However, reading that other clydes were actually running skinnier tires then I was originally running got me wondering. After reading the responses though, it sounds like the amount of traction needed really comes down to the type of riding and conditions regardless of weight.

    Quote Originally Posted by jeffj View Post
    The one variable in that equation I see increased, rather than tire size, is tire pressure. I know that when I went to 29" wheels, I could run narrower tires with less prodigious knobs, and still expect to get similar traction.
    How much narrower are the tires your running? As far as I understand a 29er is only about a .2 square inch increase in contact patch over a 26" and only lowers the PSI by 5% to get the same tire drop. I looks like tire width/volume has a much greater impact on lowering the tire pressure and increasing contact patch than wheel size.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dawgprimo View Post
    The way I look at it is:
    The smaller the tire the more pressure one has put in to work well and not get flats or snake bites or or feel unstable in cornering.
    Positive part- Lighter in weight and in feel, more XC.

    The larger volume tire gives you more surface area depending on tire pressure on the ground and gives you more options as to how much pressure also before you get worried about flats, snake bite and that sort of issues.
    Negative part -Heavier in weight and feel and more freeride or DH.

    I ride with the big tires up and down as I find it a better ride and worth the sacrifice for the up hill. I ride 26 inch wheels.

    Just my 0.02 cents
    Pretty much what I have always thought. I also ride 26inch for a variety of reasons. One of which is so I can get just about the same contact patch at a similar low PSI as larger wheels without the increase in weight of the larger wheels.

    Quote Originally Posted by scottzg View Post
    Try nixing the high volume tires in favor of ones with stiff sidewalls. You can still run lower pressures but they don't flop around on the rim, so you can really corner. UST XC tires with tubes can be an eye opener for 250lb dudes.
    Never thought about using tires with stiff side walls. Makes sense for allowing lower psi, but I don't think it would increase contact patch as much as 2.5" with low psi. I don't have an issue with my new wide tires flopping around on the rim at low pressure since I am now running wider rims. I am getting a larger contact patch at very low psi without the tires squirming around on the rims.
    Get out of the gutter and onto the mountain top.

    "I only had like two winekills captain buzzcooler"

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation: tigris99's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    2,468
    Oh ya, thats one thing, avoid thin sidewalls running tubeless as a big guy... I had to really jack with the pressures on my karma l3rs cause sidewalls are paper thin.

    Also the other change you got was wider rims, didnt know you weew on 18mm rims... I run minimum 23mm rims, next set will be 25 thinking thats max on a 2.0 before screwing up traction while leaning.

    Contact patch is going to depend on what you ride as to what you need. If its plenty of loose rough stuff than definately matters, but hell I run the 2.0 rear and trails I rode today were really dry, to the point of sandy in plenty of areas, and my fast rolling skinny rear tire only spun at all on a steep short climb I hammered on but quick shift in body weight and didnt slow me down.

    Look at it this way, sidewalls hold the weight, beyond that, dont do as I do and over-think the hell outta things,lol. If you can afford too, play with a couple sets of tires. I did a poke-a-hope on my bontragers and couldnt be happier with my set up( except when I forgot to top my rear off before ride today and it burped bad lost all air, thank god for 16g co2s,lol)
    Trek Marlin 29er

    Like It, Love It, Want Some More Of It!

  10. #10
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Posts
    3,185
    When I first started riding I was just taking the advice of the lbs whom mostly catered to 160lb riders. I was riding Specialized Fast Traks and Renegades. While they were fast and light, they were scary when leaning over, and always complained when braking hard. Now after a few years and a few tires under my belt, I have come to the conclusion that one can almost never have enough front tire with regards to volume and tread, and the rear tire depends on conditions and rider requirements.

    I have run a Nobby Nic 2.35 and Purgatory 2.4 up front, and love the ability to have the larger volume, lower psi tire deform more over roots and rocks. The larger tire also does well when a big guy needs to lean on it in a corner. I don't know that a larger tire in the front is going to slow you down nearly as much as a rear tire, but that is opinion.

    Now the rear tire has a lot to do with the time of the year, or the conditions which the tire is being used. Riding muddy wet conditions, and a nice high volume tire with more aggressive tread is your friend. When the trails dry out more, I switch to a high volume medium tread tire, like 2.25 or 2.4 Racing Ralph. I prefer high volume because you can flatten it out a little more to get the climbing, cornering, and braking requirements dialed in a little bit easier. Also, a hardtail can be brutal on the back, and a larger tire can help to soften the impacts if you don't have a chance to get off the saddle in time, or didn't see that root coming.

    You have to ask yourself a question, do I want to be laying on the ground on the side of the trail because I decided to run a skinny weight wein tire? Or do you want to have a tire you can depend on to get you home safe? I always like to not have to worry about the tires, and might be a little slower because of it.

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Posts
    1,409
    I never have wished for less traction. @ 235 lbs I run the spec .butcher 2.3 in the front and the 2.4 purgatory out back, tubeless with standard roval rims 20mm? wide. Works for me. Using 30 psi front, 32 rear for most conditions. I'm not racing, I use the biggest tires that will fit in my frames.

  12. #12
    mtbr member
    Reputation: theMISSIONARY's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    46
    on all three of my MTB's i prefer to use larger tyres

    Giant ATX840 hardtail
    Giant NRS1 carbon dually
    Commencal Meta 5.5 dually

    all 26" i am 231lbs and 5'10"

    i have on the ATX i have monorails 2.1 but IMHO they have a nice baggy size for a 2.1 and they do roll very well i mainly use these in summer as they get sketchy on the mud

    NRS currently i have Conti Rubber Queens 2.2 (if your going to get these get the German made Black chilli compound ones as the Indian made ones have poor side walls )again they are a large 2.2 nice grippy tyre and surprise me with how well the roll even on the road

    Meta 5.5 i am running some old Tioga Dh 2.3's i have had for years slow on the road but grip like sh*t to a blanket beward they are large only just fitting the other two bikes

    other tyres i have in the stack

    Nevegals 2.1....nice size but i dont like them even the "sticky" compound just not enough grip

    panaracer 1.9 basic square knobby low profile a hard tyre and not that good even on the road....its the sort of thing you put on a bike to sell it

    WTB velociraptors 2.1 i love the rear! but the front is sketchy on some terrain


    something not often mentioned is tyre profile(bagginess) this has IMHO a lot to do with the way the tyre grips and IMHO a baggy tyre grips better!

  13. #13
    turtles make me hot
    Reputation: NYrr496's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    5,370
    Currently, I;m running 2.2 rear and 2.3 front, both on 30mm rims. I run 29 psi tubeless. I was very happy with this combo until I rode my fatbike for six months.
    Now, I'm building 35mm rims for my bike. Hopefully, I'll increase my traction slightly by reducing my pressure slightly.
    I like turtles

  14. #14
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Posts
    3,163
    6'6" 240lbs here and I ride a 29x2.35 Hans Dampf or 29x2.5 Minion up front in the 20-22psi range (Ardent 2.25 for summer and High Roller 2 for winter out back).

    I'm guessing my pump just reads low based on all the others posts around here about what other riders of comparable sizes are running pressure wise. Both tires work great.

  15. #15
    MaverickMotoMedia.com
    Reputation: Gigantic's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    1,971
    6'8" & 265 and running 26x4.25 tires. it works fine for me, but some people tell me i need 4.7" tires...
    Maverick Moto Media Motorcycles, Mountain Biking & Social Media Mgt
    Facebook Twitter Instagram

  16. #16
    turtles make me hot
    Reputation: NYrr496's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    5,370
    Quote Originally Posted by Gigantic View Post
    6'8" & 265 and running 26x4.25 tires. it works fine for me, but some people tell me i need 4.7" tires...
    I can dig into turns on my 4.7's like nobody's business.
    I like turtles

  17. #17
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Posts
    202
    moved to its own post, decided I shouldn't highjack this thread

  18. #18
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    108
    Started with 2.3's tubeless 29s and messed with tire pressure on a 1 mile loop until I found my happy place. Here in the dry hard pack of my area the extra tire felt slow. I have now gone to a 2.0 front and back and with about 3-4 more psi and the corners feel the same on the 1 mile loop. The bike feels much faster and the times reflect it. I think my 295 lbs deflects the tire for all the traction available like the other posters have said. When you can run higher pressure for the lower rolling resistance and not sacrifice traction I think it is a big win.
    HBSURFDAD
    2014 Stumpjumper FSR 29er evo. XXL.

  19. #19
    Singletrackmac
    Reputation: singletrackmack's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Posts
    371
    Quote Originally Posted by HBSURFDAD View Post
    Started with 2.3's tubeless 29s and messed with tire pressure on a 1 mile loop until I found my happy place. Here in the dry hard pack of my area the extra tire felt slow. I have now gone to a 2.0 front and back and with about 3-4 more psi and the corners feel the same on the 1 mile loop. The bike feels much faster and the times reflect it. I think my 295 lbs deflects the tire for all the traction available like the other posters have said. When you can run higher pressure for the lower rolling resistance and not sacrifice traction I think it is a big win.
    It seems counter intuitive since on the road higher PSI will decrease rolling resistance, but in mountain biking it is the opposite. Higher PSI will increase rolling resistance. Running the lowest possible PSI without risking pinch flats or tire roll will make the bike roll faster. Also, wider tires don't increase rolling resistance either, but do allow for lower PSI so essentially you can have less rolling resistance with wider tires.
    (Although the hard pack your talking about sounds like it is similar to road conditions, in which case you might be faster on some small block or kenda happy medium tires with high PSI.)

    Another posted this article on the the tire pressure seems too high thread, and it does a good job of explaining it.
    Tire Pressure and Width | RIDING FEELS GOOD

    I also found this article and vid on pink bike that explains it a little more concisely.
    Tech Tuesday - Find Your Tire Pressure Sweet Spot - Pinkbike

    But, basically from my own experience and after reading these articles, i have come to the conclusion that bigger riders should run bigger or really wider tires due to the need for more volume to get lower psi for less rolling resistance and better grip. Probably should ride wider rims too.

    I say wider, because bigger wheels, like 29ers only allow for about 1 psi lower tire pressure than a 26er and only increase the contact patch by .2 square inches, (that's point two). Apparently wider tires make a much bigger difference, while larger wheels don't really effect tire volume or contact patch.
    Get out of the gutter and onto the mountain top.

    "I only had like two winekills captain buzzcooler"

  20. #20
    mtbr member
    Reputation: tigris99's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    2,468
    Quote Originally Posted by singletrackmack View Post
    It seems counter intuitive since on the road higher PSI will decrease rolling resistance, but in mountain biking it is the opposite. Higher PSI will increase rolling resistance. Running the lowest possible PSI without risking pinch flats or tire roll will make the bike roll faster. Also, wider tires don't increase rolling resistance either, but do allow for lower PSI so essentially you can have less rolling resistance with wider tires.

    (Although the hard pack your talking about sounds like it is similar to road conditions, in which case you might be faster on some small block or kenda happy medium tires with high PSI.)



    Another posted this article on the the tire pressure seems too high thread, and it does a good job of explaining it.

    Tire Pressure and Width | RIDING FEELS GOOD



    I also found this article and vid on pink bike that explains it a little more concisely.

    Tech Tuesday - Find Your Tire Pressure Sweet Spot - Pinkbike



    But, basically from my own experience and after reading these articles, i have come to the conclusion that bigger riders should run bigger or really wider tires due to the need for more volume to get lower psi for less rolling resistance and better grip. Probably should ride wider rims too.



    I say wider, because bigger wheels, like 29ers only allow for about 1 psi lower tire pressure than a 26er and only increase the contact patch by .2 square inches, (that's point two). Apparently wider tires make a much bigger difference, while larger wheels don't really effect tire volume or contact patch.

    good list if info but ur missing key points.

    Wider tires, if all else is equal (tread pattern, compound, pressure) rolls faster over any bumps as less deflection. This matters a lot but if ur riding well groomed hardpack then the conditions become more road like.

    It all depends on the trails u ride. If their bumpy and such wider tires win for example.

    To much info and debate to explain, but it comes down to ride what u like dont go by what articles say as if they are gospel. Gives u ideas to try if u feel something is lacking.
    Trek Marlin 29er

    Like It, Love It, Want Some More Of It!

  21. #21
    Singletrackmac
    Reputation: singletrackmack's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Posts
    371
    Agreed that well groomed hardpack trail conditions might warrant higher psi but probably more importantly a less knobby tire which is why I suggested those two kenda tires. I would like to give that happy medium a try, it looks cool and fast, but it wouldn't work on the trails where I ride.

    I started riding on a steel rigid before suspension was really available and rode with as little PSI as possible simply for comfort. A 2" tire back then was considered wide. Mainly rode hard dirt trails in the SF Bay Area that were anything but groomed. When I got my first full squish I tried running higher psi thinking I would get less rolling resistance, but I ended up with less traction and the tire deflecting off of everything. This is when I was in Chico riding bidwell, very rocky, lots of chunk. So I switched back to low PSI and I felt much faster.

    Now in Tahoe, I run the widest tires with wide rims for the lowest possible psi. This allows me to float over the rock gardens without getting knocked around off my line. It also allows for great traction in the very loose conditions up here.

    I don't take this article as gospel, but have been reading a lot about mtb over the years. And tires and their PSI has been the one constant as the most important factor in the performance of a mtb whether the bikes were full rigids or 150mm full squish with 29" wheels. These two articles just seem to do the best job of summing up what I have been reading for almost 25 years now.
    Get out of the gutter and onto the mountain top.

    "I only had like two winekills captain buzzcooler"

  22. #22
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    108
    My 2.3's will go back on when I hit heavy rocky areas (the right setup for the conditions). Right now I am on very hard packed trails with little rocky sections thrown in (maybe 10-20% of the ride).

    Following the "guideline" of weight/7 as a starting PSI, I ended up running about 3 psi higher in the rear, +0 in the front with the 2.3's after all the experimenting. I am now running about 7 PSI higher in the back and 2 in the front with my 2.0 Captains with the center ridge.

    If you think about it I am still running "soft", just not real soft. And to put it simply, the clock does not lie, it is a faster setup FOR WHAT I AM RIDING ON TODAY. I did not say it is the best for every situation. And so far I have had no noticeable traction change with the smaller tires, despite all my trying/experimenting. And the 29er 2.0's feel "grabbyer" than the 2.2/2.1 setup I ran on my FS 26er.

    Just wanted to share what is working for me. Again, I think being a Clyde changes the rules a little, less deflection for the same PSI due to the additional weight on top of the bike, the tire just bends more. Also i think the outcome would be different with a HT rather than my FS.

    So there you have it, the ultimate and final rule of tire setup for a big fat guy, riding a FS, on really hard pack dry trails, with a little rocky single track thrown in. I think all 3 of us will be very happy with what I have found!
    HBSURFDAD
    2014 Stumpjumper FSR 29er evo. XXL.

  23. #23
    Singletrackmac
    Reputation: singletrackmack's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Posts
    371
    Ya, definitely need to dial in the psi for what your riding and style.

    I tried using that equations before for figuring out what psi to run or at least start with. The issue I have with it is that equation seems to be outdated since it doesn't account for tire or rim width. Back in the day it worked great when rims and tires were all pretty similar in width, but now there is so many different options for tires and rim widths.

    For example I am around 240, maybe 250 with gear. The weight/7 equation puts me at about 35 psi. That might be a good staring point for my VCR '89 rockhopper comp running 2" wide gum wall tires with about 17mm internal width rims, but on my AM bike with 2.5" wide high volume tires with 27mm inner width rims, 35psi is rock hard. I start that set up at 25psi and usually adjust a little down from there depending on the trail. If I ran tubless I could probably start out a 20psi and adjust from there.

    Not sure if there is an equation out there that accounts for tire volume, but that makes a huge difference in what psi is needed.
    Get out of the gutter and onto the mountain top.

    "I only had like two winekills captain buzzcooler"

  24. #24
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    108
    A couple of additional points. I ride tubeless, and tend to ride to the trails on the road. I think those are big points I left out my earlier posts.

    And again, the only setup to ride if you are a big fat guy, riding with more suspension than you need, on really hard packed trails is what I ride. If you choose anything else you are just stupid!!!!
    HBSURFDAD
    2014 Stumpjumper FSR 29er evo. XXL.

  25. #25
    mtbr member
    Reputation: BryanChuckles's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Posts
    41
    I am looking to upgrade my tires. I am currently 350 lbs and running the stock 26x2.0 that came with my specialized hardrock. I am running 42 psi in the front and 48 in the rear and I don't seem to be getting much grip.
    Not sure if a better tire will improve or if I'm just too darn heavy to get decent grip on any type of gravel and or rocky surface.
    I assumed that if I were to go wider with the tires I could drop the pressure and increase the grip. Does that sound reasonable?
    Has anyone had any success trying this? Also, how wide of a tire can I go? From what I gather it's based upon the clearance of each individual bike? Is that right? I'd hate to order some new tires and have them not fit. Where would you start?
    Thanks in advance!

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 20
    Last Post: 09-13-2013, 11:08 AM
  2. Replies: 1
    Last Post: 09-02-2013, 05:41 AM
  3. My truck needs bigger tires!
    By nelzbycks in forum Fat bikes
    Replies: 25
    Last Post: 01-28-2013, 07:05 AM
  4. Replies: 22
    Last Post: 09-24-2012, 11:45 AM
  5. Replies: 23
    Last Post: 04-14-2011, 04:54 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •