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  1. #1
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    Kenda Smallblock 8's - Opinions ?

    I just mounted up a set of these based on what I read about them being fast tires for dry conditions and semi road courses (ie Point to point races ) .
    After two trail rides Ive found them a bit of work to accelerate although they do carry speed well .
    On road and double track , they felt like I had to work a bit harder to maintain a constant cadence .
    I have 2.0's but volume wise they do mount wide . Visually they almost look like 2.2's or more . Both rides have been with about 28/30lbs psi .

    Can anyone else share their experiences with them ?

  2. #2
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    I have had them on the back almost all year in mostly dry dusty conditions. Recently went to the Slant 6 on the back. I have the Nevegals on the front. Here is what I have learned from my riding. I noticed that the SB8 have a tendency to slide off of roots and rocks more so then the Slant 6. I never had a problem with sliding out or losing grip but you can hear it pop off of roots and rocks. The Slant 6 seems to hold its own better in those conditions. I did have the SB8 on the front for awhile but was washing out too much on the dry dusty conditions we have had here in the midwest. I am not a real fast or technical rider, just a weekend warrior this is just my opinion.
    Still learning how to keep the rubber side down.

  3. #3
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    Wondering if I should have gone with the 1.95 's ?
    I have Nevegals (Stick E ) and they are slooowww .
    I only spoon them on for rocky Escarpment type riding such as
    Kelso and Hilton Falls because they offer great grip on the rocks .

  4. #4
    snowbound
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    I've got the 2.1's in the 29r version. They are great for racing in dry conditions. For every day riding though I don't use them as they don't grab well in the corners, and are just plain scary (to me) over wet roots.

  5. #5
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    fast on hardpack and in dry conditions. not so good in loose conditions, terrible shedding mud and fairly thin sidewalls.

    run them with low pressures if you want alot of grip with them. i liked them overall.. you just need to remember that they are a light hardpack tire.

  6. #6
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    If you spend a few minutes in the Wheels and Tires forum you will find these and every other tire has been discussed extensively. I have ridden SB8s, and I will share my personal experience. Huge disclaimer: I ride a single speed hard tail and stand nearly all the time. This matters, because where a seated full suspension rider is spinning up a hill, the tire may slip on a root. I might hop the back wheel over the same root and not notice the tireís inability to grip.

    In the Spring, I was riding 2.35 Nevegals with tubes, but i switched to 1.95 Nevegals with tubes, and I was happy. When things dired up a bit here in Ontario, I went with 2.1 SB8s with tubes. I was not very happy at first. They roll much faster than nevegals, and they are fine for me in rocks. But I couldnít keep the front end tracking in wet or dry. It skated for me. I switched the front to a Slant 6, and things got bettre. I went tubeless, and I am now happy. I stand to climb, and the SB8 on the back is working for me.

    I didnít try a SB8 tubeless on the front, that might have helped. But from what I can tell, they are much better tubeless. I suspect they conform better to the surface and you get more traction without sacrificing rolling resistance. I donít know if you ride in Toronto, but last night I cranked up the Millwood Hill in flats on a 32x19, and I didnít spin out. I also ride lost of wooden stunts, including climbing them uphill, and they are fine for me.

    So my summary is that a 2.1 Slant Six front and 2.1 Small Block Eight rear is working for me on my SS hard tail.

  7. #7
    namagomi
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    +no edge makes it easy for beginners
    - no edge to rail corner.

    +tiny lugs make less rolling resistance
    - tiny lugs are not good on rocks and roots

    +lots of little tiny lugs give better grip on dry
    - pack up with mud and drifts more in sand

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by electrik View Post
    +no edge makes it easy for beginners
    - no edge to rail corner.

    +tiny lugs make less rolling resistance
    - tiny lugs are not good on rocks and roots

    +lots of little tiny lugs give better grip on dry
    - pack up with mud and drifts more in sand
    Did you read that somewhere?

  9. #9
    namagomi
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    Quote Originally Posted by Satan2 View Post
    Did you read that somewhere?

  10. #10
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    I realize that these are dry condition tire .
    I wont be using them wet/loose conditions

  11. #11
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    Kenda's are notoriously slow and hard to pedal. It's probably the DTC but I could be wrong.
    I have a Nevgal and a Blue Groove on my bike and like them for riding in Durham/Glen Major/Walker Woods, but the rear tire does slip on roots when climbing. I've learned to adjust my climbing style and cadence, but sometimes it can't be helped and I'll slip on a root.

  12. #12
    Nice day for a ride.....
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    Craig, I had a set on my C'Dale 29er in the 2.1 size and found that they worked great if you put a little more pressure that usual in them. The drawback is that with the higher pressure they slip and slide all over roots, wet, and even a fine dust over hardpack. Once you hit sand and muck you might as well be riding slicks.

    I swapped them out to a Maxxis Ardent 2.25 in the front and a Crossmark 2.1 in the rear, which are full knobbies and feel as if they roll just as fast as the SB8's.

  13. #13
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    I was running Nevegals last year and found them deathly slow, though I loved them at Hilton and for riding skinnies and rocks and other technical stuff. However, I found the compromise with speed too great. I began the season with SB8's and all was good until things got pretty baked. I found my front wheel wanting to wash out on me all the time. I could not trust these. I go a pair of Rocket Rons and they have proven to be an excellent all around tire. I was concerned with pinch flats pedaling up on and off rocks, but so far so good. I will probably throw the SB8's on the Joyride bike once the Tabletops wear out.

  14. #14
    namagomi
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    Quote Originally Posted by Braids View Post
    Kenda's are notoriously slow and hard to pedal. It's probably the DTC but I could be wrong.
    I have a Nevgal and a Blue Groove on my bike and like them for riding in Durham/Glen Major/Walker Woods, but the rear tire does slip on roots when climbing. I've learned to adjust my climbing style and cadence, but sometimes it can't be helped and I'll slip on a root.
    It's just softer rubber and larger knobs, like the nevegals, cause greater tire hysteresis since they squirm and deform more.

  15. #15
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    I never quite understood the target for the SB8. Maybe appropriate for "urban assault" or something like that. Lots of tiny lugs with little space between them is about the worst combination for rotational weight and traction.
    My rides:
    Lynskey Ti Pro29 SL singlespeed
    KHS Team 29
    S-Works Roubaix SL3 Dura Ace
    Pake French 75 track

  16. #16
    Ms. Monster
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    Quote Originally Posted by electrik View Post
    It's just softer rubber and larger knobs, like the nevegals, cause greater tire hysteresis since they squirm and deform more.
    Tire hysteresis? I don't understand the term in this context. Does it take more force to deform them than for them to return to normal? Or are you just trying to use a big word for squishy?

  17. #17
    Evil Jr.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nerdgirl View Post
    Tire hysteresis? I don't understand the term in this context. Does it take more force to deform them than for them to return to normal? Or are you just trying to use a big word for squishy?
    Maybe he means that the knobs are so large and soft that they don't have time to "rebound" between obstacles and they're in a constant state of "preload"?
    Please enjoy seeing this terrible collection of me - something wonderful is about to happy.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nerdgirl View Post
    Tire hysteresis? I don't understand the term in this context. Does it take more force to deform them than for them to return to normal?
    There are losses going on with the large soft knobs, but hysteresis may not be the best/right word to use to describe it. When they're deformed, some of the applied energy is absorbed as heat, and is not all returned as a force deformation is removed. The damping of the rubber also slows down the speed at which it springs back, reducing the energy returned by the knobs since they're deformed quickly when the tire rolls and they don't bounce back quick enough to return the full amount of force when they leave the ground.

    Quote Originally Posted by Nerdgirl View Post
    Or are you just trying to use a big word for squishy?
    Hahaha!!!

  19. #19
    Lemmy Rules!
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    Quote Originally Posted by garage monster View Post
    Maybe he means that the knobs are so large and soft that they don't have time to "rebound" between obstacles and they're in a constant state of "preload"?
    If you and the missus are both at home, on separate computers, debating the meaning of "tire deformity" on-line, either you are the best engineers ever or you both need to get out and ride a little more.

    (sorry, had to be said...)
    Strava made me do it....

  20. #20
    Lemmy Rules!
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    IMHO, these are good tires for dry/hardpack conditions, which makes them an odd choice for this time of year. If I were you, I would save 'em for next summer
    Strava made me do it....

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by garage monster View Post
    Maybe he means that the knobs are so large and soft that they don't have time to "rebound" between obstacles and they're in a constant state of "preload"?
    I expect that they rebound too slowly to return all their energy during the trailing half of the contact patch, but have fully rebounded during the rest of the wheel rotation. Of course, if they complete the rebound when in free air, they don't return any energy to the ground/bike interactions.

  22. #22
    Evil Jr.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Unglued View Post
    If you and the missus are both at home, on separate computers, debating the meaning of "tire deformity" on-line, either you are the best engineers ever or you both need to get out and ride a little more.

    (sorry, had to be said...)
    You should hear some of the conversations that go on around here.
    Please enjoy seeing this terrible collection of me - something wonderful is about to happy.

  23. #23
    Lemmy Rules!
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    Quote Originally Posted by garage monster View Post
    You should hear some of the conversations that go on around here.
    I can imagine, especially once the MiniMonster arrives....
    Strava made me do it....

  24. #24
    Evil Jr.
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    Quote Originally Posted by nickboers View Post
    I expect that they rebound too slowly to return all their energy during the trailing half of the contact patch, but have fully rebounded during the rest of the wheel rotation. Of course, if they complete the rebound when in free air, they don't return any energy to the ground/bike interactions.
    Gosh, there have to be about a bazillion factors that affect that too like tire pressure and surface composition.
    Please enjoy seeing this terrible collection of me - something wonderful is about to happy.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by garage monster View Post
    Gosh, there have to be about a bazillion factors that affect that too like tire pressure and surface composition.
    Tube/tubeless, air/nitrogen/CO2...

    Should we make a huge chart? hehe

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