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  1. #1
    Big Boy
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    Tire priorities...weight or rolling resistance

    Does weight or rolling resistance make a bigger impact on overall efficiency?

    For instance, I think a crossmark rolls better than an ikon, but the ikon is lighter, so which would make me faster on the course?

    Looking at higher volume/lightish/fast/tough 29er tires to ride/race. I've got ikons and like them other than they are thin and small, Ive got aka,s and I think they are my favorite overall tire so far, and I've got a wild racer coming in this week. Looking for another to try. Should I place emphasis on weight or rolling resistance?

    I'm thinking the race king may be a good compromise...
    -It's time to shred some mild to moderate gnar!!

  2. #2
    LMN
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    There is no easy answer to this one.

    In your example Crossmarks and Ikons the rolling resistance difference is very minimal, as is the weight difference. Probably hard to tell a difference.

    Personally when looking at XC tires I look for
    (a) A tire with enough durability for the courses I am racing on.
    (b) The right tread pattern for the conditions I am racing in.


    If I am going to pick one tire, I would bias towards a durable tire, with decent grip.
    "The best pace is suicide pace, and today is a good day to die." Steve Prefontaine

  3. #3
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    I think weight and rolling resistance are equally important. Tires for race should be light, durable and selected for the race trail conditions. So you should have at least two sets: for dry and wet conditions. For dry conditions I can recomend you Schwalbe Rocket Ron (front) and Racing Ralph (rear). For wet: Nobby Nic (front) and Rocket Ron (rear).

  4. #4
    Formerly of Kent
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    Like Sagitt77, I'm a bit Schwalbe fan. Particularly now that the Rocket Ron comes in SnakeSkin.

    My last combination was Rocket Ron front, Renegade 1.95 (measured slightly larger than 2.0") rear. Business in front, party in the rear.

  5. #5
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    From reading the scientific tests that have been done in this area, rolling resistance is more important than weight by quite a margin.

    However, weight is usually taken out of sidewalls, and more pliable sidewalls deform the best over rough ground, and win the rolling resistance stakes as a result. Also wider and lower pressure is now considered better than narrow and light.

    So racing Ralph no snakeskin are faster than snakeskin s, but not because of the weight, but because of how it deforms over rocks and holds momentum.

  6. #6
    I'd rather be riding
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    But, playing devils advocate, is that extra speed from the non snakeskin worth the time you'd loose fixing a cut sidewall. I'm having some debate on whether or not it would be worth it to move to a bigger gripper front at the expense of about 70g. Currently running Bonty 29-1 2.2s, but I have a set of 29-3 in the 2.3 flavor I can swap in. Very tempted to try Ikon 2.35 F/R (Alloy hardtail w/rough trails).

  7. #7
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    I run Ikon up front, Crossmark in the rear for most stuff. I do have an Ignitor I swap in up front for looser chunky stuff (although I think the Ikon does better on sand than the Ignitor). I have a few reasons for this setup. First, rolling resistance increases with the load on the wheel. Since more weight is on the rear of the bike, the low rolling resistance of the Crossmark is an advantage. Also, I've found the Crossmark doesn't corner well up front but has great climbing traction in the rear. Meanwhile, the greater rolling resistance of the Ikon and Ignitor up front is offset but the less weight on the tire, while still providing the needed cornering grip.

    Also, I only run the 60TPI versions of these tires setup tubeless. In 2 years running only Maxxis 60 TPI tires I haven't had a single flat, and two weeks ago was the first time I even had a puncture I knew about (put the puncture downward the the sealant stopped it right up). Plus, I've found that the tire rolls as well and grips as well as the 120 TPI EXO versions, but are a heck of a lot cheaper too.
    Last edited by ryguy135; 05-10-2013 at 05:59 AM.

  8. #8
    Big Boy
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    So my takeaway from all of this is...I need a low rolling resistant tire with supple sidewalls and nice volume for the fastest lap times (assuming I don't rip a sidewall). Seems like a 2.35 or 2.25 ralph would be perfect. I just can't stomach paying so much for a tire that likely won't make $300 miles in central texas rocks. I need a crossmark 2.3 exo please.
    -It's time to shred some mild to moderate gnar!!

  9. #9
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    Adding to the good input already given I am racing a Crossmark 650b 2.1 EXC (only reason EXC was price on sale: $41 which is normally the non-EXC price) in back and a much heavier but trusted Neo Moto 2.1 in front. Weighed my Crossmark and it's 502 grams and as many comment it's a fast rolling good REAR tire. I have extras but my piece of mind and durability and traction needs outweigh a Crossmark on the front.

    I've tried a Racing Ralph 650b and for my trails and riding style it is lacking except when perfect moisture. Conditions are dry and hardpack this weekend.

    My Neo Moto 2.1 is about 150 grams more than the Crossmark in back, but I know it'll survive whatever I bash and the traction is incredible for the course. I have a Neo Moto 2.1 for the back (usually run it for practice or training) but in a race the rolling resistance and weight are a lose-lose for my needs.

  10. #10
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    In one of the bike magazine (Magazyn Rowerowy - Poland) from last year there was a test of xc tires and Schwalbe Rocket Ron and Racing Ralph won in respect of puncture resistance, rolling resistence, adhesion and weight. That why I chose them. But Racing Ralph requires a good technique because even on dry trail there may be a small slip during dynamic ride.

  11. #11
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    For me, both are important, cause I'm a low wattage, weight weenie. This Saturday, the course is fast, with +3000 of climbing. I'll be running a Rocket Ron 2.1 in front, and a Furious Fred in back.

  12. #12
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    I just run Rocket Rons (29x2.25) front and rear all the time. They're fairly light, the air volume in them is great and the tread copes reasonably well when it gets damp but seems to roll very well in the dry too. I'd buy a snakeskin version if only they'd make them in 29er, as the few punctures I've had have been sidewall slices from sharp flints.

  13. #13
    Formerly of Kent
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    Uh, they do make Rocket Rons in Snake Skin, 29x2.25...

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Le Duke View Post
    Uh, they do make Rocket Rons in Snake Skin, 29x2.25...
    Really? That's annoying - You can't buy them here (UK)

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