Let's talk new tires for a Seeker/Goblin- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Let's talk new tires for a Seeker/Goblin

    Ok, my rear Geax Aka was getting worn in the center after one season and since I am a clyde (6'4" 245lbs) I was spinning it going up steep hills. It was hard keeping enough weight on the rear tire on the steeps. I was thinking about just rotating the tires but instead decided to get a knobbier tire. I ride a lot of rocky NE woods and all my riding buddies had bigger knobs.
    Decided on the 2015 Nobby Nic in 29" x 2.35 inches. It runs a little narrow on the Airborne rims, about 2.30 and the AKA's run a little wide, so the tires are pretty similar in width. I asked Airborne how large a tire I could fit on the bike and they told me 2.25. I measured and don't agree with them. You could squeeze a 2.4 on both the front and back if you really wanted to. Front has more clearance. A lot of tires in real life vary from their stated size, so you have to take that into account. I have the 2.35's on both front and back.

    The traction increase is huge. Also the side wall of the NN's is much stiffer than the AKA's and really improves the bike. I have the snakeskin pacestar version (stiffer side wall and harder rubber). Instead of running 25-30 psi, I am now running 17-20 psi. The lower pressure and stiffer sidewall make the bike much easier to ride over rocks and roots. Definitely makes the bike more trail worthy. The confidence at higher speeds on gravel roads is really increased as well. Bottom line is they are a huge upgrade in performance. The only downside is a slight increase in rolling resistance on the road. Similar if not better rolling in the dirt. The NN's rolling resistance is somewhat speed sensitive. They feel really good at middle speeds and slightly slower at a either extreme.

    The AKA's are good if you ride road and fire roads or bike paths. If you ride single track, a tire upgrade will be a big improvement. Another airborne owner switched to similar type tires and posted similar improvements.

    Its really amazing how much the stiffer side wall and higher volume improves the bikes performance. They absorb the smaller rocks and don't bounce you off the bike. I haven't taken them through a serious rock garden yet, but I expect good things. My final move will be to tubeless (still using tubes in the NN"s) which will help with speed and acceleration.

  2. #2
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    I had the same experience as you with wear on the AKAs. I replaced mine with Maxxis High Roller in the front and an Ardent in the back. I agree about the improved traction. The Maxxis have bigger blocks like the NN and that seems to make a big difference.

  3. #3
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    Are you guys running tubes or tubeless?

  4. #4
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    Tubes for now.

  5. #5
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    Still tubes for me. I will go tubeless soon. I am really amazed how much the tires transformed the bike. I jumped from novice to intermediate due strickly to the tires. The AKA's were bouncy and I would often loose my footing on my flats going over roots and rocks. Now, the impact is absorbed by the tire and my feet stay planted. This allows me to keep cranking on the pedals, especially going uphill and I am going up stuff I couldn't last season. I now have a Ghetto Evo Seeker and really feeling good even on the rough trails.

  6. #6
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    I run the Specialized Ground Control 2Bliss 2.1 rear and 2.3 on the front, running tubeless on carbon wheels, I typically keep 25 psi in mine, im 5'5" @210, super huge fan of those tires, have them on both ( soon to be 3 ) bikes. with the carbon on my seeker and going to 1x10 dropped the weight to around 24 lbs.. so that really helps me in the climbs

  7. #7
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    Does anybody else have a Geax Gato (TNT) up front? I've been loving it, but finally got an accurate pressure reading and was shocked to be in the teens. Freaked out because so many people said they were 25-30 generally—went to 23-24 psi and it was really sketchy. Felt almost tractionless on gravel or loose dirt. I'm heading back to 19 or so... anybody else found this to be the case with Gatos? I'm new to mtb so I'm not sure how it "should" feel, but I just can't believe people are really running 30 psi on these things—how do you not just bounce around or slip 'n slide?!

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by JPanaccione View Post
    I run the Specialized Ground Control 2Bliss 2.1 rear and 2.3 on the front, running tubeless on carbon wheels, I typically keep 25 psi in mine, im 5'5" @210, super huge fan of those tires, have them on both ( soon to be 3 ) bikes. with the carbon on my seeker and going to 1x10 dropped the weight to around 24 lbs.. so that really helps me in the climbs
    I just switched to spec ground controls, same size as you and went for my 1st ride today. Completely different bike, I shattered all of my personal records 1st time out, up and down. Should have done this a long time ago. So much more confidence inspiring.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slowupfundown View Post
    I just switched to spec ground controls, same size as you and went for my 1st ride today. Completely different bike, I shattered all of my personal records 1st time out, up and down. Should have done this a long time ago. So much more confidence inspiring.
    Sweet! Glad to hear and congrats! I was just recently talked into buying the captain controls both 2.2, the lbs was out of the ground controls, so I put those on my hobgoblin, and I gotta say, i'm loving the crap out of them too.. First ride out with that bike and those tires, I beat a pr that I've been trying to beat for months.. All dry ground though so far. I'm taking my HG with the captains out to Browns creek this week, we're supposed to get rain, I'll post how they do in a little slop, but right now on dry ground... I'm liking them better than the GC's.
    Just a dude being a dude in the woods & Owner of Newark Bike Shop an authorized Diamondback Dealer.

    My personal bikes:
    Airborne Seeker
    Airborne HobGoblin
    Airborne Goblin
    Airborne Toxin
    Diamondback Insight ( on the trainer )
    Evo Vantage 7.0

  10. #10
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    For you Spec ground control guys, have you had any problem with the sidewalls? I recently put a 2.1 on the rear of my goblin and after 2 rides there were literally dozens of spots where the stans had come through... Same rides I had taken before on previous tires and not a dot to be seen.... Not bashing the tire as I like it as well but that is what happened with me... Just curious as the tire has been pretty highly recommended.. Luckily the shop I bought if from said "no problem, bring it in!"
    I think I can, I think I can, I think I can.. Oh SH*T!!!

  11. #11
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    Haven't had that issue on the two ground control set ups I have nor on the captain set up,s might be a good idea to go ahead and bring it in to where you got it so they can see it and replace it. I'm working on my buddies spesh today, his rear Michelin tire is doing the same thing..

  12. #12
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    I've been running the ground controls for a little over a year (2.3 in the front, 2.1 rear) and I've slashed one sidewall beyond repair. It was partial rider error, since I did break a rock in half, which made it pretty sharp... But I have heard of quite a few sidewall problems with them. I'll probably go with something else next time, but I've been very happy with the handling.

  13. #13
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    CST Critter 2.1 rear/CST Rock Hawk 2.25 front. Overkill for the trails I ride but I like a very aggressive front tire.

  14. #14
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    I took my Specialized " The Captain Control 2Bliss " 2.2 front and rear on my Hobgoblin this weekend to Blue Mountain... I was impressed on how well they handled, the trails were dusty and loose but I only broke traction a few times, but never went down.

    I'm going back to BMBP in a few weeks before they close, I'm thinking of taking the Ground Controls 2.3 f / 2.1 r, and see how they compare.
    Just a dude being a dude in the woods & Owner of Newark Bike Shop an authorized Diamondback Dealer.

    My personal bikes:
    Airborne Seeker
    Airborne HobGoblin
    Airborne Goblin
    Airborne Toxin
    Diamondback Insight ( on the trainer )
    Evo Vantage 7.0

  15. #15
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    To answer the tire pressure question from objector,

    Running tires in the teens is OK for a tire with a stiff sidewall. The optimum tire pressure varies by how "stiff" the side wall is, the volume, the weight of the rider, the terrain. Overall range of pressures goes from 15ish to 40 psi. That doesn't count fat bike tires which run below 10 psi. When I changed tires I dropped from 25-30 range to 17-22 range because of the tire construction.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by la10slgr View Post
    For you Spec ground control guys, have you had any problem with the sidewalls? I recently put a 2.1 on the rear of my goblin and after 2 rides there were literally dozens of spots where the stans had come through... Same rides I had taken before on previous tires and not a dot to be seen.... Not bashing the tire as I like it as well but that is what happened with me... Just curious as the tire has been pretty highly recommended.. Luckily the shop I bought if from said "no problem, bring it in!"
    I took it in and the shop i bought it from was awesome about replacing it... Guy went so far as to admit there was a bad batch of tires... However, replacement did the same thing, about 20 pinholes on each side, some bigger than others.. If someone is knowledgeable, is this a "dont worry about it" or should i go through it all again?
    I think I can, I think I can, I think I can.. Oh SH*T!!!

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