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  1. #1
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    Schwalbe ice spiker pro

    I am a very unhappy with new Ice Spiker Pro 29 tyres.
    Yes, this is an only real light and durable spike tire for big wheels, but there's a many problems with spike loss. Most people who use it has some troubles.

    I know that the tyres must be ridden 40 km on the road to fixing the spikes, but there's a problem in any case. Only number of lost spikes differ (3-5 with pre-riding, and 10+ without).

  2. #2
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    I have a new set of Ice Spiker Pro 29er tires that I have been running on mountain bike trails under winter conditions for the past two weeks. My conclusion: spike loss occurs at an unbelievably and unacceptably high rate. I have already lost 180 spikes in 7 rides -- that's almost 30% of the total number of spikes. I called Schwalbe and they told me that I failed to follow the proper run-in procedure for these tires, namely, running the tires for 25 km on an asphalt road at 20 psi so all the spikes engage the roadway. These procedures were not included with the tires when I bought them by way of a brochure, sticker or label, and were not explained to me by the dealership from whom I purchased the tires. If you have these tires and have not yet used them, it would seem like a good idea to follow their prescribed run-in procedures. I doubt, however, that the run-in procedure makes much difference in regards to spike loss. Nokian says to do the same thing and I never noticed a difference in spike loss with their tires whether or not I followed their prescribed run-in procedures. Over the past years I have lost far fewer spikes with Nokian studded tires -- probably 20 times less than with these expensive Schwalbe tires. Don't expect much help from Schwalbe with this problem; everyone who owns them is probably calling them up for new tires or studs now that the snow is flying. This is all too bad, because the tires themselves perform very well indeed.

  3. #3
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    there's only one question: i rode my ice spiker pro 26" tyres @680g weight for two winter seasons without any spike loss, what's a crap that 29 made of?...

  4. #4
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    Not to doubt the experiences of those who have already posted, but...I haven't lost a stud yet. I did get a good 30k on pavement before the snow came - and you could really notice how much the studs bedded in. Unbelievable grip, although I would like a bit more volume.

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    No good Massive Stud Loss - Great tire otherwise

    SO I have now completed 4 rides on these after riding them in on pavement at approximately 20 miles. I have lost 71 studs so far. The replacement bags are $19 for 25. So it is costing me somewhere in the range of $15 a ride!! WTF??? I rode Nokian Gazza Extremes last winter and lost NO studs. Same exact riding conditions. I plan on calling Schalbe today to seek either a large supply of studs or replacement tires or a refund. This is unacceptable in my humble opinion for a $180 tire.

  6. #6
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    Schwalbe Customer Service

    When I called Schwalbe customer service about my Ice Spiker Pro tires losing too many studs (about 30% of all studs over 7 rides), the first person I spoke with gave me the company line about not running the tires in properly, and said I would have to buy spikes through their web site. With over 200 spikes to be replaced, doing so would cost nearly as much as a new set of tires. I found this answer unsatisfactory, called Schwalbe back, and spoke with a different representative who offered to send replacement spikes to me. That was almost two weeks ago, and I have not yet received the spikes. Who knows -- they might be on their way given the holiday rush. My main point is that Schwalbe seem to be well versed in the spike loss problem, and some of their representatives do not appear to be in any mood to help customers who have purchased expensive Ice Spiker Pro tires and who have experienced high rates of spike loss. This is unfortunate given that the product clearly has major design and/or manufacturing flaws that have nothing to do with customer use (or misuse). In my opinion, Ice Spiker Pro tires should be advertised as asphalt road-only winter tires, as they clearly lose too many spikes when used on mountain bike trails. Don't be surprised if Schwalbe won't replace the tires or the spikes.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by sburrill View Post
    SO I have now completed 4 rides on these after riding them in on pavement at approximately 20 miles. I have lost 71 studs so far. The replacement bags are $19 for 25. So it is costing me somewhere in the range of $15 a ride!! WTF??? I rode Nokian Gazza Extremes last winter and lost NO studs. Same exact riding conditions. I plan on calling Schalbe today to seek either a large supply of studs or replacement tires or a refund. This is unacceptable in my humble opinion for a $180 tire.
    You drive an Audi...you can afford it.

    Just kidding...
    I am immune to your disdain.

  8. #8
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    What's the latest....

    Iv'e been holding out on a new set of studs and can't decide b/t the Nokians and the Spikers.

    For years I had the Nokian 294s in a 26" but gave them to a freind a few years back. I hear the 294s don't work as well in a 29" version as the studs are too spaced out.

    Was going to get the Spikers but I'm hearing too much about stud loss!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Miker J View Post
    Iv'e been holding out on a new set of studs and can't decide b/t the Nokians and the Spikers.

    For years I had the Nokian 294s in a 26" but gave them to a freind a few years back. I hear the 294s don't work as well in a 29" version as the studs are too spaced out.

    Was going to get the Spikers but I'm hearing too much about stud loss!
    I understand your concern about stud loss.

    I put 50 off road miles on a set(not ridden on pavement) and lost 4 on the front and 7 on the rear.

    I ride with SBurrill on occasion. I am perplexed as to why he has lost so many. We ride at similar paces(7-11mph avg) over the same terrain...which is rocky and rooty.

    I would not hesitate to buy the Ice Spikers ESPECIALLY if you ride them in.
    They are head and shoulders above the Nokians. That is for certain.
    My .02.
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  10. #10
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    Thanks for the report....

    Quote Originally Posted by indyfab25 View Post
    I understand your concern about stud loss.

    I put 50 off road miles on a set(not ridden on pavement) and lost 4 on the front and 7 on the rear.

    I ride with SBurrill on occasion. I am perplexed as to why he has lost so many. We ride at similar paces(7-11mph avg) over the same terrain...which is rocky and rooty.

    I would not hesitate to buy the Ice Spikers ESPECIALLY if you ride them in.
    They are head and shoulders above the Nokians. That is for certain.
    My .02.
    To not only keep this thread going, but to add some input....

    For maybe 5 years I rode the Nokian 294s on my 26" bike. I think total I probably lost 5 studs between the 2 tires. I did baby them a bit. They were bedded in very well and they and they didn't see hard braking often, nor dry trails.

    I don't consider winter-ice biking a "high performance activity" (yet) but rather something to do to get me outside and keep me in shape. Since the 294s treated me well in the past, I just pulled the trigger on the 29" version. Hopefully the traction will be there. I was told by "folks in the know" the whole business with the 29" version being a significant step below the 26" version, in terms of traction, was bunk.

    Price - the Ice Spiker Pros sound great. Especially the 2.25" version in kevlar. But they are very pricey compared to the Nokians. I did see some of the Ice Spikers Pros going very cheaply on some sites - at close to half of retail, which I found hard to believe at the begining of winter. Perhaps there were different production runs of that tire that involved some quality issues? Any thoughts?

    Anyway, we'll see how it goes this year. Winter riding in the current area will be new to me and I have to feel it out anyway. If the ice riding turns out to be very good, and I'm in need of higher performance, I'll look at the Ice Spikers next year. Maybe just for the front to begin. If there are quality issues it'll give them a year to make good.

    Thanks again for the thread.

  11. #11
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    I'll add to the sample size, since I got a set of the 29er Ice Spiker Pros the week before xmas and have lost 1 stud on the rear after about 10 rides. For the first few rides I babied them sticking to paved paths and pressures below 20psi. After that I hit all my normal singletrack. Every so often I'll slid badly off of a root and be sure that I tore out a bunch of studs, but so far I've only lost the one. I'll update as the winter goes on.

    (and I'm not sure how long this will last, but Excel Sports has the 29ers for the same price as the 26ers which is what convinced me to get them. The came new in the box, and didn't show any signs of being oem/takeoff/rejects)

  12. #12
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    I've ridden the Nokian Gazza 29ers for 2 seasons and haven't lost a stud yet. They're stupid narrow though.

    I've ridden the Nokian Freddies Revenz for the same amount of time and lost not only a shitload of studs but the friggin' knobs themselves tore right off. They also roll just about as well as square wheels.

    With one exception, I've heard nothing but horror stories about these Ice Spikers, both through stud loss and tubeless setup. I believe Schwalbe is now finally admitting they made a booboo and giving out free replacement studs. Weird how some people don't lose them and others do, though. Any ideas on why?

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bear Spleen View Post
    I've ridden the Nokian Gazza 29ers for 2 seasons and haven't lost a stud yet. They're stupid narrow though.

    I've ridden the Nokian Freddies Revenz for the same amount of time and lost not only a shitload of studs but the friggin' knobs themselves tore right off. They also roll just about as well as square wheels.

    With one exception, I've heard nothing but horror stories about these Ice Spikers, both through stud loss and tubeless setup. I believe Schwalbe is now finally admitting they made a booboo and giving out free replacement studs. Weird how some people don't lose them and others do, though. Any ideas on why?
    riding style and terrain. i've only lost studs after trail rides where i hit rocks, roots, etc. in 5+ years of riding studs on pavement/extremely basic trails, i've never lost a stud.
    for the record this is all on the nokians, never used the schwalbe as i think all of their tires are overpriced...
    what would rainbow unicorn do?

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by ferday View Post
    riding style and terrain. i've only lost studs after trail rides where i hit rocks, roots, etc. in 5+ years of riding studs on pavement/extremely basic trails, i've never lost a stud.
    for the record this is all on the nokians, never used the schwalbe as i think all of their tires are overpriced...
    I agree entirely with the above assessment.

    If you never venture off the asphalt, you will be unlikely to lose studs whether you use Nokian or Schwalbe tires. If you do venture off the road onto trails with rocks, roots and other obstacles typically associated with mountain biking, however, you will probably notice a big difference between Nokian and Schwalbe tires when it comes to stud loss. The more snow and ice, and the fewer the rocks and other obstacles, the lower stud loss will be. If the trails you ride in winter are mostly snow covered and have few rocks and/or roots, you will probably see minimal stud loss. Throw rocks and other obstacles into the mix, and stud loss will go way up if you are using Schwalbe tires.

    My set of Ice Spiker Pros, new five weeks ago and used on about 25 rides covering about 200 miles of Rocky Mountain singletrack, have now lost about half of their spikes. Almost all the spikes from the two outer rows are gone, while those in the centers of the tires are mostly still there. A definite decrease in traction has resulted from the progressive loss of spikes over time.

    By comparison, Nokian studded tires I used in past lost about 10% of their studs per tire per winter riding season when riding on the same trails and under essentially identical winter conditions.

  15. #15
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    I've had the Ice Spikers for 3 months, never venture off the ashphalt, and haven't lost a single stud yet.

    However, the two center rows of studs are now completely "pushed in" the tire,and no longer protrude at all. They're not worn, just pushed in. These tires are now pretty useless, considering the price I paid ($200 for a set).

    Anyone had a similar experience? With Schwalbe or Nokian?

  16. #16
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    ^ I've still only lost a single stud, but I was also noticing how far some of the studs are recessed with a couple being pretty much invisible. In comparison my Nokian mount&ground have two winters and 5000km+ on them, and look brandnew except for a bit of rust.

    Edited to add: even with the recessed studs I haven't noticed any traction issues, and I've been riding some ridiculously icy singletrack, in addition to pavement.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by marcpro View Post
    I've had the Ice Spikers for 3 months, never venture off the ashphalt, and haven't lost a single stud yet.

    However, the two center rows of studs are now completely "pushed in" the tire,and no longer protrude at all. They're not worn, just pushed in. These tires are now pretty useless, considering the price I paid ($200 for a set).

    Anyone had a similar experience? With Schwalbe or Nokian?
    In response to your query I just checked the spikes on my Ice Spiker Pro 29ers that have had about 5 weeks of regular use on mtb trails. As you report, some of the center studs are indeed pressed down into the rubber a fair distance, some so much that their utility gripping ice is questionable. In addition, almost all the spikes from the side rows are gone; those that are not gone stick out further than those in the center rows because they have not been pushed into the rubber as much. I also checked my Nokian Gaza Extreme tires from last year, and the spikes in those tires are more uniform in regards to the distance they stick up from the rubber, whether the spikes are on the side or the center of the tire.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Miker J View Post
    To not only keep this thread going, but to add some input....
    I was told by "folks in the know" the whole business with the 29" version being a significant step below the 26" version, in terms of traction, was bunk.


    Thanks again for the thread.

    not bunk, true. I finally set mine up tubeless and they were almost as good as the 26" version. but running them tubeless is rough on them

  19. #19
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    I got mine around Christmas, we havent had any snow to speak of and the the trails were dry
    I mounted them up tubeless, no problem, no compressor
    Couldnt wait so I went for a ride without bedding them in and it was on very technical singletrack
    lost 50 rear and 5 front
    called myself dumbass and ordered more studs.
    never got around to bedding but went on second ride, frozen ground no ice, not too technical
    only lost 1 stud and that was with the knob
    third ride semi technical 50% ice lost 8 studs
    my impressions

    knob rubber is soft, even with only about 45-50 miles of trail riding I can see damage to knobs
    maybe the tires hold onto the studs better in colder weather? since cold will stiffen up the rubber
    I see these tires as being replaced each season ( at least the rear) as they wear alot faster than Nokians. They may also slip more on rocks and the massive amounts of studs mean less rubber on the trail
    I will say when I mounted my Nokians tubeless, I also did alot more damage to them and lost alot more studs so being tubeless doesnt help stud loss

    the good
    50% lighter than Nokians
    tubeless ready
    they perform pretty much as well as summer tires and all the studs mean NO slipping on ice

    so I would say buy them if: you ride on snowy or icy trails, pavement or non technical trails, or dont mind replacing them yearly. Definately bed them in as per instructions
    Ill post back after a few more rides, were getting snow now

  20. #20
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    It is the same tread pattern, compound, and studs as the 26" version. What could possibly make the 29r version a step below the 26" version?

    What is "rough" on them by running tubeless?
    I am immune to your disdain.

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    Quote Originally Posted by indyfab25 View Post
    It is the same tread pattern, compound, and studs as the 26" version. What could possibly make the 29r version a step below the 26" version?

    What is "rough" on them by running tubeless?
    simple, the 29" wheel has a bigger circumfrence, but the 29" nokians have the same # of knobs and studs as the 26" stretched out . if you look at the 2 side by side youll see the knobs are farther apart on the 29" version

    running them tubeless makes the sidewalls more flexy and supple so they make more contact with rocks, ice and such. also slightly less pressure for tubeless

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by dan0 View Post
    simple, the 29" wheel has a bigger circumfrence, but the 29" nokians have the same # of knobs and studs as the 26" stretched out . if you look at the 2 side by side youll see the knobs are farther apart on the 29" version

    running them tubeless makes the sidewalls more flexy and supple so they make more contact with rocks, ice and such. also slightly less pressure for tubeless
    I didn't realize there was a comparison between the Nokian. Makes sense that the 29r is really a 1.95.

    Which Schwalbe 26" are you referring to, the 26x2.35 or the 26x2.1? The 2.35's knobs are spaced out quite a bit.

    It sounds like you are saying that, regardless of the tire, tubeless is rougher on the tire. That doesn't sound right to me. Seems like that is dependent on pressure rather than whether or not there is a tube in the tire.
    I am immune to your disdain.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by indyfab25 View Post
    I didn't realize there was a comparison between the Nokian. Makes sense that the 29r is really a 1.95.

    Which Schwalbe 26" are you referring to, the 26x2.35 or the 26x2.1? The 2.35's knobs are spaced out quite a bit.

    It sounds like you are saying that, regardless of the tire, tubeless is rougher on the tire. That doesn't sound right to me. Seems like that is dependent on pressure rather than whether or not there is a tube in the tire.

    I'm comparing the NOkian 29 to the Nokian 26
    I set up the 29 Nokian tubeless and got better results, almost as good as the 26" version

    I am saying running the Nokian or the schwalbe tubeless is rougher. look at it this way
    without a tube the tire is more flexible even at the same psi. thats one of the advantages of tubeless. its also one of the dissadvantages because the sidewalls take a beating.
    another example
    Ive had several tires that got sidewall cuts, sealant wouldnt seal tight, add a tube and I was able to finish the ride
    another example
    virtually all of my tubeless tires wear out the rear sidewall, not the tread, granted I ride rocky trails but when I was tubed I never once tore a sidewall
    I run 26-27 psi tubeless, 27-28 tubed depending on tires

    unless the tire is UST there is less reinforcement because there is less rubber, even if you put alot more air in the tubeless tire than the tubed tire the tubeless tire still will have a total sidewall thickness less than a tubed tire including the tube

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by dan0 View Post
    I'm comparing the NOkian 29 to the Nokian 26
    I set up the 29 Nokian tubeless and got better results, almost as good as the 26" version

    I am saying running the Nokian or the schwalbe tubeless is rougher. look at it this way
    without a tube the tire is more flexible even at the same psi. thats one of the advantages of tubeless. its also one of the dissadvantages because the sidewalls take a beating.
    another example
    Ive had several tires that got sidewall cuts, sealant wouldnt seal tight, add a tube and I was able to finish the ride
    another example
    virtually all of my tubeless tires wear out the rear sidewall, not the tread, granted I ride rocky trails but when I was tubed I never once tore a sidewall
    I run 26-27 psi tubeless, 27-28 tubed depending on tires

    unless the tire is UST there is less reinforcement because there is less rubber, even if you put alot more air in the tubeless tire than the tubed tire the tubeless tire still will have a total sidewall thickness less than a tubed tire including the tube
    I see, I think. You are saying that tube, just by virtue of being behind the sidewall, will not allow the sidewall to tear as easily. Makes sense. I'm not so sure I agree with your example of being able to finish the ride with a tube. Either way, the hole is still there. I do not see that as being an example of it "being more durable." I'm speaking of the sidewall exclusively, not the tube/tire system.
    I really like the Snakeskin and EXO sidewalls. I would like to see a tire with a light, durable sidewall and a protective layer on the tread like the Double Defense. Tubeless bliss without the UST weight...and supple.
    I think one of the reasons I had a hard time wrapping my head around what you were saying is because while it is rocky here, the rocks are likely not as sharp as what you are riding. I never tear sidewalls. The side knobs wear out first, for me. I always run Snakeskin tires. One problem I have with the Ice Spiker is that the damn thing is too light. In my opinion, it should be a double defense tire. The sidewalls are just too thin.
    I am immune to your disdain.

  25. #25
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    I have 120kms of trail riding on my Spiker Pro's. Everything from dirt to full iced trail. I went out today and did 30 on a mix of soft snow, rock and rooty mud. I have lost a grand total of 1 stud. This is from the middle row, rear tire. It seems YMMV etc...
    If ya can't fix it with a hammer and vice-grips...it don't need fixin!

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by indyfab25 View Post
    I see, I think. You are saying that tube, just by virtue of being behind the sidewall, will not allow the sidewall to tear as easily. Makes sense. I'm not so sure I agree with your example of being able to finish the ride with a tube. Either way, the hole is still there. I do not see that as being an example of it "being more durable." I'm speaking of the sidewall exclusively, not the tube/tire system.
    I really like the Snakeskin and EXO sidewalls. I would like to see a tire with a light, durable sidewall and a protective layer on the tread like the Double Defense. Tubeless bliss without the UST weight...and supple.
    I think one of the reasons I had a hard time wrapping my head around what you were saying is because while it is rocky here, the rocks are likely not as sharp as what you are riding. I never tear sidewalls. The side knobs wear out first, for me. I always run Snakeskin tires. One problem I have with the Ice Spiker is that the damn thing is too light. In my opinion, it should be a double defense tire. The sidewalls are just too thin.

    I agree, 29" tires have even less sidewall protection than 26" for some reason, I think the manufacturers are afraid of a little weight. a good example of what you're saying is specialized purgatory, I can run the s works up front no problem, if I try it on the rear it lasts about a month, but the control version lasts in the back

  27. #27
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    I only have two rides on mine. First ride I lost 8 studs. Second ride I lost no studs. This is despite a moment of insanity and doing a big fixie skid on the blacktop heading into the trailhead.

    I guess my rides have been modest singletrack, but well covered with snow.

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    it's been said here already but you really must get them bedded first. Admittedly I still have my spiker pro's 29er's in the box and have not set them up yet but I have had the 26x2.1 version on a bike for two years now..never lost a single stud and continue to grin like a fool at how wonderfully these tires perform even. I am not someone that rides to extremes so I must admit that I generally dont push the envelope but they have been pure joy. For me they perform rather splendidly in all sorts of terrain beyond simply snow and ice.

    If you are able, try and spend a more relaxed week riding them on your MUP before taking out to play. They are pricey tires and I can imagine how pissed off one must feel if after one ride you lose 8-studs..

  29. #29
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    Carbide replacement studs can go for as little as 1-2 cent each on eBay. So it doesn't matter (I have seen 200 and 300 packs go for in the $3 range).
    Last edited by rsilvers; 01-01-2016 at 12:33 PM.

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    My regular tires are Knobby Nics. I like them a lot, but I wanted something I could ride on without worrying about ice, so I got these.

    Specifically, I have the non-folding kind with the metal wire bead. I didn't notice at the time, but the ones I got are 1.2 lbs heavier per set. I probably wish I paid more to get the folding ones, though that depends if the folding ones are lighter with zero disadvantages. Maybe they are less durable also? Maybe thinner rubber? Maybe the folding shed more studs?

    Lots of reviews said the Ice Spiker shed studs, and that you have to ride them for 20 miles or so on pavement to bed them in. I didn't bother and only rode for about 1/4 mile on pavement. I used them today for the first time on a 12.8 mile trail ride that had every surface - rocks, roots, wooden bridges, dirt, mud, gravel, pavement. I was able to claw up steep/rooty hills without slipping when my Knobby Nics did, and I only lost one stud.

    Moreover, they are not expensive to replace if you get them from China on eBay. A few times I have seen 200 packs go for in the $3 range. So my experience is that the fear of losing studs is unwarranted. Also, I spoke to a dealer who sells a lot of these and Nokians, and he said that one is not more likely to shed studs than the other.

    Maybe the folding ones shed studs and these heavier ones do not? There must be some reason this tire is so much heavier than the folding one. I don't think the wire-bead alone accounts for so much weight difference. Maybe these have a much more stable rubber base?

    They are noisy on pavement and sound like making popcorn. They do seem to have a lot of rolling resistance on pavement - but probably less than a fat-bike (which was something I considered getting instead of these).

    My first ride on them: https://www.strava.com/activities/460692107

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    Everyone who has lost a lot of studs and who has not lost a lot of studs, I would love to know if you have the Evo folding or the Performance non-folding version. Maybe only the folding "lightskin" sheds studs.

  32. #32
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    I have these. The Evo Liteskin version. I have about 25 miles on these and have all my studs. I did not bed these in with the 40 miles as "suggested".

    Having said that these tires absolutely shred in icy, icy/muddy condition (like when the sun has melted part of the trails).

    I road them again this afternoon. 22 psi, tubeless, 30 degrees and sunny out. Trails were compacted snow, ice, and mud.

    In the shaded frozen areas I made every steep climb. It was funny because I saw all the footprints of those that had to dismount and walk up the hills. Like all those fat bikes that were out today. I had not one instance and I had some pretty step climbs.

    In the turns I swear I had more traction than I do in the dirt sometimes. These tires provide nothing but traction in frozen compacted snow/ice. I don't think they would work too well in deep snow or deep slush but for hard snow there is nothing like them.

    In addition I can run them on my normal bike aND not lug around a huge and heavy fatbike.
    by Silentfoe
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  33. #33
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    I rode mine again today - through water as deep as the BB, mud, rocks, roots, dirt, gravel, pavement. No real ice yet. Crusty 31 degree F ground. They have been amazing. I have not fully figured out if they slip on rocks. I thought they did, but now I think they are ok but just make a lot of noise. I am loving them.

    While I know they cannot float in snow like a fat bike, I mostly wanted a fat bike for better grip on wet roots and ice. I think this solves that for roots (and is better on ice) and saves me from the cost and divided attention of another bike.

    I am 144 lbs and started with 25-30 psi, but the cold temp lowered that during the ride.

    If I read the negative reviews, that say one of the following:

    1. Sheds spikes. I lost one stud so far. Not an issue.

    2. Sidewalls too thin/not durable enough. I have my rear on tubeless and my front will be.
    I think the non-Evo version has extra layers of either rubber or nylon. If you bought the Evo version, you bought a race tire and chose less weight in exchange for thinner material/less durability. The Pro / non-Evo version is no heavier than the Nokian even though it has 108 more studs. People seem to love the Nokian and complain about the durability of the Ice Spiker. Well, get the heavier Ice Spiker Pro version and then it should cease to be less durable than the Nokian.

    My ride: https://www.strava.com/activities/462192480

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    You guys might want to turn down the gloating until you've got more than a handful of miles on these things.

    I've never had a problem losing studs, but I've had two sidewall failures (both of which schwalbe warrantied):

    Multiple holes spontaneously opened up:
    r

    And then the warranty replacement that schwalbe sent had a bead failure after barely any mileage


    For my tire that hasn't failed, I found the traction went way downhill after a year or two. My solution was to cut off part of the knobs to give the studs better contact (this photo isn't great, but the knob on the bottom left is one that I've opened up)


    And now I'm in winter 4, and the carbide cores are starting to fall out leaving the casings behind, so this tire is basically done.

    4 years isn't bad, but these tires certainly aren't without problems (I'm actually running a nicotine upfront this year - haven't had to deal with much ice yet, but I'm worried that the large stud spacing will make it worse that the ISP on ice).

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    That is helpful. Thanks for posting that. I did see one review where they said the sidewalls were paper thin and had perforations.

    I suspect the Pro version solves that though. At least I hope so. I want tires to be as light as possible, but not lighter than possible.

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    I'm just not sure that there's really a right answer. I think schwalbe has designed a tire with a ton of studs that's also really light, but any quality control goofs at the factory lead to various failures.

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    And I might as well post this example of one of the studs that's fallen apart:



    So again, this is in year 4. But just this year I've had 5 of these appear, so I assume this tire's days are numbered.

    4 years isn't bad exactly? But even midway through year 2 the traction was way down, with an annoying tendency to just skate right over ice. That's why I took an exacto-knife to half the knobs, and that was a big improvement. Here's a slightly better illustration of that:
    Schwalbe ice spiker pro-15587986734_c386c9946f_k.jpg

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    Today it was 28º F / -2º C and the roads were icy, and even though my friend told me that "biking season" was over, it seemed like a perfect night to try my carbide-studded tires. I set the pressure to 20 psi and then did an 8.5 mile ride on every kind of surface (pavement, dirt, wooden bridges, roots, rocks), and the tires stuck to the ground like Velcro® brand hook-and-loop fasteners sticks to itself. I felt like I could have ridden upside down, and made it up a steep and rooty climb that I have failed in the past when it was dry. It was fun, and not too cold.



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    To Newfangled - quite possibly over 4 years the rubber started to age, disintegrate, etc. And hence the performance fell off. I'm sure the rubber plays a part in the incredible traction these tires have.

    As far as the sidewalls go, the Evo version is thin obviously to save weight. I imagine Schwalbe has produced these as a winter access tire for icy roads, lake crossing, etc. not roots, rocks and trails.

    Maybe the heavier versions are for that purpose.

    Whatever the case, being able to command the icy conditions we have here now makes it all worth it.
    by Silentfoe
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    Even my heavier Pro version has thin sidewalls. For sure this tire would lose air right through the sidewalls without sealant. I saw a pinhole that air came out until I sloshed the sealant toward it. And I saw thousands of microscopic bubbles dancing on the sidewall with soapy water until the sealant took. So there is no butyl air-tight layer on mine. On my 29er with Giant/DT-Swiss wheels, it is working fine with 3 oz of Stans.

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    Mine arrive next week. I sold my fatbike becuase a set of wheels is cheaper than whole bike. I hope they will do great in compacted snow/ice. The fat bike was great on snow but once it turned into ice, they were useless unless you had studded tires. Now I won't have an excuse not to ride!!

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    I rod mine again on icy rocks and they are still great and I am still not losing studs (beyond 2-3 total). I did order 200 studs from eBay for about $20 shipped. I see one past auction winner for 300 studs for $3.50 shipped!

    If you order the tires from Germany like I did, get the 25 pack of studs and the tool set. It is worth it for the German price as the tool alone is about $14.

  43. #43
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    I don't know that I've ever seen a photo comparison of the Nicotine and Ice Spiker Pro, so I figured I should do one:





    The nicotine is larger, although I think my second photo exaggerates the size difference. When they're right next to each other you can tell the nicotine is a bit bigger, but if they were on two different bikes I think it would be hard to say. It's certainly not gigantic though.

    Since ISPs are fairly cheap now, I don't know that the premium for the nicotine is worthwhile.

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