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  1. #1
    Will Ride For Beer!
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    Single Speed rear tire. What do you run, and why?

    I have converted my Kona King Kahuna to a single speed. Right now I have a Maxxis Ignitor on the rear. It works but loses traction in the steep loose stuff. I also tried an old Botrager 29-2 with even worse results. What do you use< and why?

  2. #2
    Basura Blanca
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    I'm running a Maxxis Ikon, after slicing the sidewall on my (non-EXO) Ignitor during a ride down in Tucson. I'd read that the Ikon, offered in the EXO sidewall like the Ignitor, was essentially a lighter, faster-rolling replacement for the Ignitor. I've been pleased w/ how well the sidewalls have held up to the rocks, and it's got decent volume and rolling resistance for a rear tire. Hooks up well, although the short chainstays on my bike help with that. My only gripe is that it's wearing faster than I expected. I may look at a Geax offering next time.
    - Joe
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  3. #3
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    Too many to list.

    Really like the Ikon Exo.

    Am also a huge fan of the Nano.

    Geax AKA was pretty good, but wore out waaaayyy too fast.

    I prefer low profile knobbies for here in So. Cal.
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  4. #4
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    I just installed an Ikon on the rear of mine, Nevegal on the front. Haven't tried the combo yet but should work well for my area.
    Cannondale F29 carbon
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  5. #5
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    I use ardent, better traction much much faster and lighter than nevegal.
    Good grip for steep climb, so far so good never slip even on wet rocks or concrete.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by jackspade View Post
    I use ardent, better traction much much faster and lighter than nevegal.
    Good grip for steep climb, so far so good never slip even on wet rocks or concrete.
    On the front or rear? Main reason I went with the Nevegal up front on my bike is that I have two new ones just hanging in the shed. I hate to see them go to waste. That, and even though they are slow, they sure do hook up like nobody's business and here with loads of mud, rocks, and roots, they are proven performers. Once I need to buy new fronts, I'll probably go with something that is a faster tire though.
    Cannondale F29 carbon
    Jamis Renegade Elite
    Kona Big Unit SS/full rigid
    Kona Private Jake SSCX (build in progress)

  7. #7
    Damn Fool
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    Depends.... In the summer, I like either a rocket Ron or a Conti race king. Once the weather turns wet ill turn to something a bit more beefy. I've got a WTB prowler waiting on the wall for fall time. Previously I had a WTB moto captor on the back end for when things got nasty
    It's not about being better than others, it's about getting the best out of myself.

  8. #8
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    Kenda Slant6 currently. Rolls much better than the Ignitor I had on there, a bit more volume too.

  9. #9
    Dive Bomber
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nubster View Post
    On the front or rear? Main reason I went with the Nevegal up front on my bike is that I have two new ones just hanging in the shed. I hate to see them go to waste. That, and even though they are slow, they sure do hook up like nobody's business and here with loads of mud, rocks, and roots, they are proven performers. Once I need to buy new fronts, I'll probably go with something that is a faster tire though.
    Nevegal on rear is what I don't like but for front works fine and doesn't even feel slowing me down, It's still a great tire for my uphill training - I use ardent for race and it's a blast the difference is very noticeable.

    I am not doing good on any off-road even with the best off-road tire out there, it's just I don't have skills for it.

  10. #10
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    Prefer big volume tires, and for durability the Ardent 2.4 EXO have been the best. Heavy, yes, but fast and durable. Been tearing up sidewalls of the lighter tires, Saguaro, Ra-Ra, Race King, and am now curious to try the Ikon EXO.

    Wondering if the Ikon is a high volume 2.2 like the Saguaro & Race King. Any thoughts here?

  11. #11
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    Anyone tried a 29er Racing Ralph 2.25 on the rear set up tubeless?

    I'm running Specy Fast Track TL Ready. They're good for geared bikes but when I stand up and mash, it looses grip quickly.

  12. #12
    rebmem rbtm
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    Heavy WTB Weirwolf UST that I got off chainlove for <20 bucks. Traction is good and it is doing tubeless with negligble air loss on a Stans rim with two scoops of sealant.

    I prefer big volume tires too but this 2.1 has done better than expected and has been reliable.

  13. #13
    Warrior's Society
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flyin_W View Post
    Prefer big volume tires, and for durability the Ardent 2.4 EXO have been the best. Heavy, yes, but fast and durable. Been tearing up sidewalls of the lighter tires, Saguaro, Ra-Ra, Race King, and am now curious to try the Ikon EXO.

    Wondering if the Ikon is a high volume 2.2 like the Saguaro & Race King. Any thoughts here?

    Find the Ikon to run a little on te small side.

    Mounted to a Creat and an Arch....they seem a bit narrow.
    I resolve to constantly assert my honest opinion on anything and everything - whether it is requested or not.
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  14. #14
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    I try and use whatever I can find on sale. Our local trails destroy tires!

  15. #15
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    conti x-king protect 2.2 front (670gr) & maxxis crossmark ust 2.1 rear (850gr) - both tubeless.
    Will be trying a x-king protect on the rear soon.

  16. #16
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    I run the Ignitor front and rear - tubeless - best traction I have found on our dry, loose trails in the Canadian Rockies. Hubby runs the Ikon but they are not as aggressive so I would suspect you will not get better traction with them. I have run the Racing Ralphs tubeless as well and like them - faster than the Ignitor, but not as much traction.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2times View Post
    Anyone tried a 29er Racing Ralph 2.25 on the rear set up tubeless?
    Yes, mounted on a Flow. It's not very big volume so I ran it @ 32 psi, on trails has good grip, and is r-e-a-l-l-y fast. Notice that as a rear, the Ra-Ra's wear out quickly.

    Thanks, mtbikej for the answer re: Ikon volume/size.

  18. #18
    Bad cat!
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    Hans Dampf 2.35 is a biggun, calipers say it's more like 2.4 run tubeless on a Stan's Crest. Heavy at 920 g (my scale), he likes his strudel, but no complaints on climbing traction here. My Unit came stock with ignitors, they were OK I thought, but not so much now that things are super loose and dusty...

  19. #19
    Riding and lovin it.
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    For the Chicago area ( clay, rocks, slick soft mud) I've been running tubeless Captain Controls 2.2f 2.0r for the last year with great results.

  20. #20
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    Conti Race King 2.2 F/R. They came on my bike when I bought it. They work so I haven't bothered to change them.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtnbikej View Post
    Find the Ikon to run a little on te small side.

    Mounted to a Creat and an Arch....they seem a bit narrow.
    This. On my WTB Dual Duty they seem taller than they are wide. Ok for volume, but, nowhere near my 2.4 Ardent. I think i measured the tread around 54mm. I do like the weight, grip, and roll the Ikon delivers. Just not as much as the Ardent's roll, grip, and volume. My Ardent tread width is 60mm. I run them in the front and just bought a carbon fork to offset the tire weight because i like the Ardent that much for SoCal.

    OPer, if you're not hooking up with your Ignitor in the back, you will need to look into big knobs or your technique. I like faster rolling in the back and will accept a loss of grip for it. Although, i spin out less due to the bigger gear i climb on the SS compared to my gearie. I also power my rear wheel into the earth more on the SS while climbing and mashing to get more grip. Currently got a Racing Ralph in the rear.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2times View Post
    Anyone tried a 29er Racing Ralph 2.25 on the rear set up tubeless?
    I am running RaRa's on my rigid ss.

    Fast rolling and light.

    Front 2.4, rear 2.25. Tubeless, of course.

    They work well for me here in Westchester County, NY...

    SPP
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  23. #23
    Attack Position
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    2.3 WTB ExiWolf Race, Gorilla tubeless at 28PSI. It's what I have available...

    Fairly fast rolling and good traction.

  24. #24
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    I like the crossmark 2.1 as a rear tire except for its sidewall tearing tendencies. Three people, including myself, have gashed crossmarks, non-ust.

    Right now on my light wheelset I am experimenting with a conti speed king 2.3 as a rear tire and so far so good.

    On my heavy wheels I have been running CST PRO caballero 2.4's for years. At least 5-6 years and I am stocked up to keep running them. I don't know why I enjoy that tire so much.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by boostin View Post
    I like the crossmark 2.1 as a rear tire
    I have run the Crossmark as well and liked it ... definitely gotta run it tubeless with the right pressure and not so good if it's muddy.

    SPP
    Rigid.

  26. #26
    Is that Bill rated?
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    Rear tire? I don't know as I ever want for knobby style climbing traction, but still want a little knob for directional stability and definitely soft rubber for our wet roots and rocks. My top tire so far has been the Python NG 2.3 MRC Medium, Sticky, fast, and just enough edging knobs to keep me pointed. Running low on my stock and it seems to be hard to find now. Sigh.
    Well, it was a good try.

  27. #27
    veinte nueve pulgadas
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    Another vote for the Ikon. If has enough bite, good rolling resistance, and excellent durability. I ripped through a sidewall in the rockiest of rocky terrain (shouldn't have had an Ikon there), but in general, it has been a great tire for me.

  28. #28
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    I just bought 2 RR TL 2.25 and will hopefully try them soon; I'll let everyone know how they work. My biggest issue is breaking traction when mashing uphill in loose over hardpack. I've been very happy with the RR on my FS bike. My SS has Specy Fast Traks 2.0, I wouldn't reccomend them on a SS, just to narrow.

    Is there a Tubless Ready version of the Ikon?

  29. #29
    A Gentleman and a MTBR'
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    I currently run a 2.3 Kenda Small Block 8 in the rear, which has been pretty underwhelming so far.

  30. #30
    Powered by Pulvoron
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    Kenda Karma rear and Nevavel up front. I really think you have to just sense it, especially single speed. Every pedal stroke on a climb I can either hammer or let off on the crank pressure for the rear tire to catch.
    FilipinoMafia - Ohio Chapter

  31. #31
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    Bronson 2.2 on the rear - replaced an Ardent 2.25. Seems to stay hooked up on the loose-over-hard of my local trails. Ardent 2.4 up front. Bike is a Kona Big Unit, which is essentially same frame as KK from original post.

  32. #32
    Gimme free stuff
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    ardent 2.4. why because i bought 2
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  33. #33
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    Mountain King 29x2.2 for now. Decent grip, but tiny volume. About to throw on a Geax Gato 2.3, should be nice a big to match the Ardent 2.4 up front, except the Geax was $32.

  34. #34
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    I replaced the Ikon 2.2 with a Spec Captains 2.2 not too long ago. Been very satisfied ever since. I put a good couple hundred miles on the Ikon, great tire, but the traction especially on loose/ small rocks tech sections uphill (especially dry weather) is not my cup of tea.

    That said, I'm selling the Ikon 29x2.2 still in great shape. PM me if interested.

  35. #35
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    Run Racing Ralph 2.4 on the rear, does wear a little fast but has hooked up fantastic and put me on the top step of the podium 6 times this year.

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtnbikej View Post
    Too many to list.

    Really like the Ikon Exo.

    Am also a huge fan of the Nano.

    Geax AKA was pretty good, but wore out waaaayyy too fast.

    I prefer low profile knobbies for here in So. Cal.
    I noticed the same with the aka, so I went with the Saguaro, its a bit heavier but the tire lasted over a year of ridding and the more aggressive tread helps with standing on hills.

  37. #37
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    Maxxis Crossmark UST. I don't ride my SS when it's really muddy and the Crossmark does well in all the conditions I ride. I wanted a tire that was as efficient as possible and had good traction.

  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by stubecontinued View Post
    I currently run a 2.3 Kenda Small Block 8 in the rear, which has been pretty underwhelming so far.
    That's what I was running and it was just barely ok. I went to a Geax AKA and for the first time I knew what the word "traction" meant. I did like the weight and speed however.

  39. #39
    EXORCIZE
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    IME, worst to best

    ardent 2.25 (good front tire)
    rampage (good front tire)
    aspen (good for nothing)
    ignitor (never great, never bad)
    nano (didn't feel faster than a crossmark and less traction)
    exiwolf LT 2.3 (if you need the volume)
    crossmark (my old reliable)
    Ikon EXO (king)
    2016 Pivot Mach 429 Trail
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  40. #40
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    Front Minion 2.35 / Rear SB8 2.10

    I'm not much of a climber but the SB8 is very sensitive to air pressure. It's grip is OKish on where I ride (roots/rocks/dirt), but wheel spins on steep loose gravels with rocks when I stand and mash. Tried the 2.35 Minion (ST) for the rear and give good grip, but with my tiny engine, I ended up pushing the bike more than I would accept. LOL

    On my previous FS gearies, I find that the Xmark is pretty decent, also sensitive to air pressure though.

  41. #41
    veinte nueve pulgadas
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ryder1 View Post
    Ikon EXO (king)
    Love them.

    I know most folks hated the Bonty XDX, but I always thought that if they could have improved the tread wear, it would have been a very nice tire. Good volume, sidewalls were tough and they latched onto the rim like none other that I had tried (at the time). I raced the hell out of the XDX in SS enduro on front and back. Obviously not great up front, but I was all about the efficiency. I also now have a lot of well worn XDXs in the garage that serve are gravel road tires.

    The Ikon is my new go-to tire. Good tread wear. Good enough bite without major sacrifice in efficiency. Not a terribly cheap tire, but sub $60 @ Tree Fort is good enough, given how long they last.

  42. #42
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    Yeah. Kenda Small Blok 8 was sort of a tire of choice around here, in West Michigan. I'm not really sure why. I was also underwhelmed with them.

    I pretty much go for whatever. I only change tires once a year. Hard to really have much opinion on it!

  43. #43
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    I've been running schwalbe nobby nics front and rear. Work well for new England. Great traction, low Illinois resistance, but I'm finding they wear out too fast.

  44. #44
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    i have RoRos because those are the spare tires i had in the garage
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  45. #45
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    I found the RaRa as a rear is pretty good...Grips well, rolls fast. With a snakeskin sidewall, easy to setup tubeless. Unfortunately like pretty much all Schwalbe tires, it doesn't last all that long and it's not cheap. The RoRo is an awesome lightweight tire, but the sidewalls are so thin they should only be on demo bikes...

    If weight isn't a concern (or speed)...The nevegal is pretty damn hard to beat traction/durability/pricewise.

  46. #46
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    If you don't buy GEAX GATO TNT 2.35, you are blowing it!

    Use Slime Pro, not that other guys stuff! One thing I am really realizing in the last year is that in dry weather, the rider has way more to do with the success of a tire than you would think. Every tire I try is my new favorite tire! I really like alot of them. Ignitor 2.1, Nevegal 2.35, Rampage, Gato 2.35, Mezcal 2.35(26 inch summer tire), Conti Mt King 2.4. Just rode my girlfriends 1986 Bianchi w/ Velociraptors! they worked great! Oh, I loved the Hutchinson Toro 29 x 2.3. The Python, not so much.

  47. #47
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    Karma-Rampage

    I run the Karma 1.9 in the rear and the Rampage 2.3 upfront. Just a nice combination of bite and low rolling resistance. If I did more nasty descents, I would have to beef up the back a little more.

  48. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by MJbikeski View Post
    I run the Ignitor front and rear - tubeless - best traction I have found on our dry, loose trails in the Canadian Rockies. Hubby runs the Ikon but they are not as aggressive so I would suspect you will not get better traction with them. I have run the Racing Ralphs tubeless as well and like them - faster than the Ignitor, but not as much traction.
    +1 for Ignitor on the rear but with a tube. Ikon on the front works well for me. 29er through and through for a single speed

  49. #49
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    Ikon EXO 2.2 (+'s = fast/light/grippy) (-'s = volume/durability at lower pressures)

    Saguaro TNT 2.2 (+'s huge volume/rolls fast/SUPER durable at low pressures/excellent wear) (-'s = A real ***** to mount on my rims/on the heavy side)

  50. #50
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    Used to have 2.3 Exi's front and rear, but when I got my Arches, I put a 2.4 X King up front and a Race King in the rear. The Race King definitely rolls really fast (I use them on my Fargo that I commute on as well as mtb on since they are so fast). There are times when I could use more grip on climbs, but usually when its deep fine powder or kitty litter grains (I'm in southern california). However, I can usually make it through those sections if I weight the rear a little more then normal. I love the huge (tall, not wide) volume of the race kings on the rear as I can get a little more absorbance out of them when I run them around 25 (tubeless, and I'm a lumbering buffalo so I can't go to low). So I guess long story short, Race King is a great rear most of the time, but I am curious about a X King in the rear as that might give a little more bite and they aren't that much slower on dirt. Also, I have found the regular race king to rear pretty well so far especially considering the sandstone and other rocks and pavement my rides usually include.

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