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  1. #1
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    HC100 tire recommendations

    Coming out from the Boston area to ride the HC100. I've ridden in Bend before on a rental, don't recall the tires on the bike. My local trails are rocks, roots and mud with lots of leaf and snow cover in the fall and winter. Depending on bike and time of year, I ride Ground Controls and Purgatorys (by Specalized) up front and FastTracks in the back (or GCs in the back) or Rons and Ralphs.

    I am planning to use a GC up front and either a FastTrack or Furious Fred in the back. It's a 29er XC Rig (Epic). So, not so different of a selection from what I am using now. Do I need a larger volume up front or can I go fast for both?

    Feedback on the choices and recommendations appreciated.

    Oh - and can't wait to hit Bend's trails and then breweries. Love it there.

  2. #2
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    I use 2.3 GC Control casing on the front and FT 2.2 Control casing on the rear on both my SS HT and geared HT. I don't use a FS in Bend, so I can't comment on what is best on a FS ride. I know of folks that use Ikons and Geox AKAs and like them a lot. I prefer a bit more bite in the front to deal with the loose over hardpack.

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  4. #4
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    Good post, I'm looking for the same thing!

    Just destroyed the rocket ron's that came with my bike (after 5 rides). It sounds like Bend is pretty buff, but the lava rocks mean a decent casing is worth having (no german schict!). can't wait for hc100

  5. #5
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    I did McKenzie a couple years back and it tore up the sidewalls of a bunch of guys bikes. I have also ridden the trails in the Phil's complex, some were a little more technical with rocks, but lots were fast with soft berms. I am wondering what the backcountry trails (other side of Bach) are like. Is it McKenzie like with the lava rocks where I need decent casing (like trees4me is saying) or is it largely soft with some rocks?

    SpyIP thanks for the link...

  6. #6
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    HC100 tire recommendations

    I used ground controls f and r last year. 2.3 front, 2.1 rear. Worked great. I like control over sworks for bend trails. Lava rock can do a number on sidewalls.

  7. #7
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    Besides COD and Grand Slam, which both have some moderate rock gardens, the lower elevation areas are buff hardpack to loose over hardpack. You will also find some moderate rock sections in the Wanoga complex. The higher elevation stuff above Phils and Wanoga also only have moderate rock sections. Most of the rock are lava formations, but there is some loose shale like rock in the Tumalo area and other areas as well.

    The dirt that starts north of Bach and loops around counterclockwise has more lava formations, but again I would only characterize it as being moderate. The worst of it is found on the singletrack close to Sparks Lake and then on the Edison Lava trail in the direction of the Edison Snopark.

    I ride the setup I mentioned in my earlier post and rarely get sidewall tears, and I ride COD and Grand Slam at least 2x a week. However, the majority of time, the rider is largely responsible for preventing sidewall tears IMHO.

    The lava rocks on McKenzie are more severe than 99% of what you will on the Bend singletrack.

    Hope this helps.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by ACree View Post
    I used ground controls f and r last year. 2.3 front, 2.1 rear. Worked great. I like control over sworks for bend trails. Lava rock can do a number on sidewalls.
    I've got the same setup on my Camber 29er and was rather impressed how it handled when I was in Bend last month.

    I also agree that the rider plays a major part in preventing sidewall tears but in a race the best lines aren't always chosen. I saw someone do just that near Lava Lake two years ago in the HC100 and had a tube bulging out the side of the tire. And on that note, I can't believe I ran SB8's that year...

  9. #9
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    IMO the McKenzie has more chances to destroy a sidewall than HC100 does. But, it only takes one.

    Quote Originally Posted by beninstow View Post
    I did McKenzie a couple years back and it tore up the sidewalls of a bunch of guys bikes. I have also ridden the trails in the Phil's complex, some were a little more technical with rocks, but lots were fast with soft berms. I am wondering what the backcountry trails (other side of Bach) are like. Is it McKenzie like with the lava rocks where I need decent casing (like trees4me is saying) or is it largely soft with some rocks?

    SpyIP thanks for the link...

  10. #10
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    The loop from Dutchman to Lava lake to Edison is the worst part for tires. I agree it's largely line choice. In 2012 I used non snakeskin racing ralph's with no problems. I've also had a couple S-Works that died early deaths due to sidewall slices. Now I stick to Controls, at least in the rear. I have Ground Controls on F and R at the moment, not just for Bend, but year round in the PNW (mostly wet side).

    Quote Originally Posted by economatic View Post
    I've got the same setup on my Camber 29er and was rather impressed how it handled when I was in Bend last month.

    I also agree that the rider plays a major part in preventing sidewall tears but in a race the best lines aren't always chosen. I saw someone do just that near Lava Lake two years ago in the HC100 and had a tube bulging out the side of the tire. And on that note, I can't believe I ran SB8's that year...

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by ACree View Post
    The loop from Dutchman to Lava lake to Edison is the worst part for tires. I agree it's largely line choice. In 2012 I used non snakeskin racing ralph's with no problems. I've also had a couple S-Works that died early deaths due to sidewall slices. Now I stick to Controls, at least in the rear. I have Ground Controls on F and R at the moment, not just for Bend, but year round in the PNW (mostly wet side).
    Indeed! I was doing some exploring last weekend on Edison Lava Trail and forgot how brutal the lava is out there. I had mixed experiences with Ground Controls in the wet. It was a fine line between decent grip and absolutely nothing on rocks and roots if things got too soggy. I went with a set of cheap Kenda El Mocos for riding in the slop.

  12. #12
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    A fast low rolling resistance tire will really serve you well for HC100. Yes, there is some sharp lava on the backside but the vast majority of the trails are very smooth and fast rolling. The dirt in Bend seems to really grab sticky large knobs too. Sidewall protection is important for the rocky sections though.

    Ikons in EXO or Racing Ralphs with Snake Skin seem to be the most popular HC100 tires by far. If you are going with Specialized, I'd do a fast trak in the rear with either a GC, Captain, or Fast Trak up front. Stick with control casings, not s-works.

  13. #13
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    Thanks to all - this is definitely helpful. I am thinking it's GC Front and FT back, no S-works casings. Last two conundrums - camelback vs second hydration bottle on seat post and where to get a post ride IPA!

  14. #14
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    To be on the safe side, bring some material to make a boot if you get a rip in the sidewall.
    Tahoe29er

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by beninstow View Post
    Thanks to all - this is definitely helpful. I am thinking it's GC Front and FT back, no S-works casings. Last two conundrums - camelback vs second hydration bottle on seat post and where to get a post ride IPA!
    Post-ride IPA question doesn't even require thought for me...Worthy.

    Re: Camelback vs 2nd bottle, I've done a small Camelback the last 2 years but this time around I'm ditching it. Large Perpetuem bottle on the frame, one hydration bottle on the seat post, and a small one in a jersey pocket. But you may want to base the decision on weather a couple days before the race and your individual needs.

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