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  1. #1
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    Austin Tire Recommendation?

    I'm sick of my crappy stock tires on my 26" Supercaliber. I am looking for a good setup for the Austin area. I just started in September so I don't know much. I ride mostly the Greenbelt and Walnut Creek, but want to expand. What do y'all suggest? I was looking WTB WeirWolf 2.55 LT, but not sure.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 1234567
    I'm sick of my crappy stock tires on my 26" Supercaliber. I am looking for a good setup for the Austin area. I just started in September so I don't know much. I ride mostly the Greenbelt and Walnut Creek, but want to expand. What do y'all suggest? I was looking WTB WeirWolf 2.55 LT, but not sure.

    You are right on to consider the trails that you are riding specifically....you should also consider your rim's width and what width tires are most appropriate for that rim. Also think about clearance for the tire in both your fork and rear triangle, since I don't know that you can fit a 2.55 WTB in that rear triangle (the WTBs run pretty true to size from what i hear).

    That being said, many are happy with the relatively inexpensive Nevegal 2.35. It would be overkill for WC though, probably not as good as some others. Maybe run something a bit thinner/more XCish there that still has some loose-over-pack bite, like the Maxxis Ignitor. Or Ignitor R and Nev F...

    I bet a local tire connoisseur like Bear will chime in too...

  3. #3
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    har har har, nothing like being called out.

    Numberz, 'zed is right that you'll want to be careful about sizing tires. Some run big, some small. I'm betting (but don't know) that the Supercaliber has more narrow rims /clearance so a 2.2 or 2.3-ish tires is probably the max you will get.

    If you want a fast rolly tire, get yourself some Kenda Small Block 8, in the 2.35" size, if you can. I'd almost bet that if you popped into Hammerhead Bikes that they'd let you fit them up to make sure they're good on your bike before rolling out. I've ridden those tires on my HT and on my FS to good effect for many a mile.

    if you want a more aggro tread, the Blue Groove or Nevegal come to mind, in order. Same size-ish. Stick with the DTC (dual-compound-tread) versions though. The single compound STick-E are way heavy, slow rolling, but super grippy, tires.

    Maxxis has some good options. 2.25" Ardent/ADvantage come to mind, if they fit.

    I've also had good luck with the 2.25" Specialized Eskar Control tires. They're a little lightweight for me (e.g. thin sidewalls) but had good overall behavior. $$$ though.

    If you see a theme here with larger than 2.0/2.1 tires it's because I believe in letting the tire work for you, and provide grip by conforming to the terrain.

    If you run the Kenda 2.3-ish tires tubeless, depending upon body weight, PSI as low as 20-25 is safe - on the right rims. Makes for excellent traction. I personally run either Mavic XM321 rims (on my backup wheels on my hardtail) or Stan's Flow (on my main ride). They both have similar widths, 21-23mm wide at the rim wall I think (inner spacing).

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by bear
    har har har, nothing like being called out.
    Heh, I suppose I owe you three paragraphs of your time!

  5. #5
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    Kenda nevegal 2.35. I have 2.1's on my bike now - they roll faster but they are not as plush.

    Blue grooves wear out too fast.

    Maxxis high rollers have too large a gap in the tread and wash out easily on dusty turns.

    But it is different for every rider.
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  6. #6
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    i have signatue nevegals 2.1--i think they're sticke--I've never noticed they're slow--coz i'm slow--but I am running tubeless now.

    i had good luck with the high rollers too--VA and here---when i got the stumpie they came with Spec Pro and I switched them to nevegal and havent looked back.

    i've had very bad luck with anything hutchison or panaracer.

    btw 1234567, please compose a new handle.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by ArmySlowRdr
    btw 1234567, please compose a new handle.
    Yeah, just make sure it is something that is aligned with his belief structure, or you will hear about it after.

    It might be best if you just post up a list of what you are considering for his approval, then you can go from there.


  8. #8
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    oh please.
    every1 should know by know i jest. and am opinionated.
    damn the whole mojo site is one of jest. so what.

    anyway 1234567--just seems he or she didnt wanna take time to thnk of a screen name; i was just suggesting he or she might think about posting under a relevant to biking one.

    what p*ssed in ur cheerios?
    Quote Originally Posted by CharacterZero
    Yeah, just make sure it is something that is aligned with his belief structure, or you will hear about it after.

    It might be best if you just post up a list of what you are considering for his approval, then you can go from there.


  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by ArmySlowRdr
    oh please.
    every1 should know by know i jest. and am opinionated.
    damn the whole mojo site is one of jest. so what.

    anyway 1234567--just seems he or she didnt wanna take time to thnk of a screen name; i was just suggesting he or she might think about posting under a relevant to biking one.

    what p*ssed in ur cheerios?

  10. #10
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    I read an article recently suggesting that running a more aggressive tire up front with a faster tire in the back gives you the best of both worlds, any experience?

    I'm thinking a 2.35 Nevegal up front with a 2.1 SmallBlockEight in rear - I had smallblocks on my old ride and found them to be very fast but the front washed out too easily in corners. Switched to Panaracer Fire XC's and grip is good but they're slower...

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by tdotrider
    I read an article recently suggesting that running a more aggressive tire up front with a faster tire in the back gives you the best of both worlds, any experience?

    I'm thinking a 2.35 Nevegal up front with a 2.1 SmallBlockEight in rear - I had smallblocks on my old ride and found them to be very fast but the front washed out too easily in corners. Switched to Panaracer Fire XC's and grip is good but they're slower...
    What you are thinking wouldn't be the first person to do so. Many actually run identical, or at least similar tire setups.
    Pedigre


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    Thanx for all the help guys!
    Right now I'm thinking the 2.35 Nevegal up front with the 2.1 SmallBlockEight in rear. That's sounds pretty good, eh?

    Where's the cheapest I could get them?

    This site any good?
    http://www.universalcycles.com/shopp...s.php?id=17264

  13. #13
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    Numbers, consider the 2.35 small block 8 for the rear, if it'll fit your frame. Extra tire volume good.

  14. #14
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    I have heard several people say that small block 8's on the rear can have grip issues in some environments in austin. Maybe that was the smaller size. I'd be interested to see if the larger tire does a better job. Especially if it does better at holding lugs. That is my only complaint on kenda is that they lose lugs faster than anything else.
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    Universal Cycles is great, ordered from them a couple of times and actually dropped by their shop in Portland when I was out that way. They stock a TON of stuff and their prices are pretty good.

    I'm still a little green behind the ears when it comes to mountain biking - what's the argument for wider vs. skinnier tires? Like why is the recommendation to go with a 2.35 up front and a 2.1 in the rear? Why not the same size for both?

    I'm assuming that wider tires offer better flotation & grip, whereas skinnier tires are faster...is that pretty much it?

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1234567
    Thanx for all the help guys!
    Right now I'm thinking the 2.35 Nevegal up front with the 2.1 SmallBlockEight in rear. That's sounds pretty good, eh?

    Where's the cheapest I could get them?

    This site any good?
    http://www.universalcycles.com/shopp...s.php?id=17264
    Yes, running a more agressive tire up front affords you the control that is necessary and the smaller/smoother rear tire allows for better acceleration at a minimal compromise.


    Universal Cycles is a great site.

    You can also hit the LBSs around town, they might even provide more insight/fitting at a marginal cost increase.

    For the 2.35 Nev, expect to pay $33+, for the SB8, $35. I would suggest getting the Kevlar bead (folding bead) versions.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by bear
    Numbers, consider the 2.35 small block 8 for the rear, if it'll fit your frame. Extra tire volume good.
    "Numbers" lmfao! Now thats funny.

    So im kinda in the same boat here. I just picked up some new wheels that came with nevegal 2.5 DH casing Stick E. They fit so im thinkin about running them.

    What can i expect going from 2.1 to 2.5? I ride a enduro pro HT and was hoping the width would give me some more cushion.

    I also live in the austin area and walnut is my main trail.

    J

  18. #18
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    basically, IMO,
    larger (more air volume/larger casing) makes for a more conforming tire, this results in needing less PSI, more grip overall, less bounce-off the terrain, more likelihood of grip-vs-slip. Larger tires also tend to have more rubber, so tend to last longer tread-wise and sidewall wise. I repeat ... tends to last longer, this is not guaranteed.

    I'm a modestly substantial rider, who rides moderately aggressively, and am pleasantly surprised that the small block 8 tires that I have been running since November still have plenty of treadwear left, shoulder lugs and all. Front and rear. I took them off recently because, *cough*, I really like *big* tires.

    I also feel that the larger tires with more sidewall rubber work better tubeless, which is how I run them. It's just an opinion though.

    Going from 2.1 to 2.5? Good luck fitting it on the bike, first off. My experience is that most XC-oriented bikes can't handle a 2.5. Also, the narrower rims made for 2.1-ish tires may "balloon" the 2.5 too much making it too easy for it to pop a bead during high speed cornering. I've have run 2.5 Kendas fine on Mavic XM321, Dt 5.1d, and Stan's Flow rims. I would not put them on anything more narrow. Note that some 2.4 tires are as large as the Kenda 2.5's. Maxxis Ardent/AAdvantage come to mind. They're just as wide as the Kenda 2.5 and actually TALLER.

    That said, assuming you're running commensurately less PSI, you'll have more solid traction, better trail holding, less bounce, greater durability. And Slower Rolling and Acceleration. More tire to move, right?

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by austin_bike
    I have heard several people say that small block 8's on the rear can have grip issues in some environments in austin.
    Yeah, when Coker gave his initial review (back in his 26" days) that said that it could work, but required a lot of finesse to succeed with it in loose-over-hardpack and dusty conditions, I decided it isn't for me. As much as I like to finesse things, I choose to not sacrifice stability and traction for marginally better rolling tire.

    FWIW, according to the German tire tests, the SB8 isn't all that fast a roller...that is if you believe in numbers/computers/engineers can quantitate rolling resistance.

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    Thanks for the insight bear - it all makes good sense.

    Suppose I go tubeless via Stan's tubeless conversion kit (I'm riding DT Swiss X430 rims), and go with the 2.35 nevegal up front and small block 8 in rear - would I be better off with a 2.1 or 2.35 width? Would the added rolling resistence be significant enough to outweigh the grip advantage of the wider rear tire?

    Also, is there much advantage to going with UST-specific tires? From what I understand they have thicker sidewalls to resist sidewall punctures but naturally weigh more. Wouldn't this offset the lower-rotational-weight advantage of going tubeless in the first place?!

  21. #21
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    right now i have Bontrager Race Disc Tubeless Rims and Bontrager Jones XR 26x2.25/2.2 tires. They were tubeless but I got a bunch of thorns in them when I rode a public golf course, so I have tubes in them now. Anyways, my question is since the rims are designed for tubeless tires would it work with 2.35 Nevegals? I've decided on 2.35 Nevegals on front and back.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by bear
    Going from 2.1 to 2.5? Good luck fitting it on the bike
    Not a problem for me. They fit just fine, Thinking 2.7 is max for this frame.

    Thanks for the info!

    J

  23. #23
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    whether the 2.35 is an overall benefit over the 2.1 only you can really tell, for you. To be honest in your assessment though you need to give it a bit of riding. Also your primary ride purpose may dictate. Dedicated to racing may mean 2.1, but for non-race-day use the wider to get better endurance on the tire and different ride behavior.

    I don't find that the rolling resistance of the 2.35's an issue (for the SB8), but then I normally run 2.4(+) sizes, and I find the concept of putting a 2.1 on my 6+" travel bike hard to swallow and have never done it, so my opinion is *not* unbiased.

    I also did not find traction problems with the SB8 while I was riding them, with them front and rear. I find it hard to believe I have more finesse than Coker is willing to put out on regular riding (or that I'm above some kind of finesse-skill-line...whatever). I *did* notice a dramatic traction improvement when I put my 2.4" maxxis tires back on - but that is to be expected when going from XC-geek tires (IMO) to AM/DH/FR-tires.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by bear
    I find it hard to believe I have more finesse than Coker is willing to put out on regular riding (or that I'm above some kind of finesse-skill-line...whatever). I *did* notice a dramatic traction improvement when I put my 2.4" maxxis tires back on - but that is to be expected when going from XC-geek tires (IMO) to AM/DH/FR-tires.
    review here:
    Quote Originally Posted by hammerheadbikes
    ok...
    some more ride time
    last night at City Park in Austin
    hardpad with a layer of talcum powder dust and lots and lots of loose rocks of all sizes
    plenty of limestone stairstep ledges up and down..

    so..
    they roll very fast

    I didn't have any traction problems but they don't have that " I can shove the front tire as hard as I want into any thing and know it will stick" feeling of a more agressive tire with bigger knobs..

    not surprising results of course given the conditions.. very loose


    so.. they work and never let me down but are better suited to a finesse rider and someone who is aware of the condtions and feedback from the tires.. than someone who just slams into everything

  25. #25
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    than someone who just slams into everything
    I might be just one step above that on the finesse-o-meter

    I'm not into the racing scene as of yet so I think the 2.35 might just do the trick for me (still have to check clearance in the rear triangle on the Rush but I think a 2.35 isn't outrageous...)

  26. #26
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    tires for Austin

    Quote Originally Posted by tdotrider
    I read an article recently suggesting that running a more aggressive tire up front with a faster tire in the back gives you the best of both worlds, any experience?

    I'm thinking a 2.35 Nevegal up front with a 2.1 SmallBlockEight in rear - I had smallblocks on my old ride and found them to be very fast but the front washed out too easily in corners. Switched to Panaracer Fire XC's and grip is good but they're slower...
    I run this exact setup and it works great (when the trail is dry) after going from Small Blocks front and rear. I ride the same trails as OP - BCGB, WC, CP.

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by txnrider
    I run this exact setup and it works great (when the trail is dry) after going from Small Blocks front and rear. I ride the same trails as OP - BCGB, WC, CP.
    Would you just switch out the rear for a Nevegal when it's muddier?

  28. #28
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    muddy and central texas trails don't go together much, general advice is don't ride when muddy. It's usually muddy maybe 3 days a year?

    but, for some venues and events, mud riding required. in that case a narrower tire that sheds mud better then the 2.35 neve is probably a good idea. Conti 2.3's and other 2.1's come to mind.

    fyi, last time I rode a wet event (Camp Eagle marathon race in dec '07) I used 2.35" Short Trackers from kenda. Semi slicks. Didn't pack up for anything and did as well as I needed elsewhere. Crazy. Sillly. Maybe I drank too much MacAllan 15 that night ...

  29. #29
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    Ted, what about SB8's for my bike? I'm about halfway through my nevegals right now (little over 2 monhts) and I have some cheap 2.35's from chainlove in the garage that are up next ($17 each).

    If they don't work out, based on my riding style, is it worth me looking into SB8's?
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  30. #30
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    It's worth a shot, you'll like the rolling speed and weight (faster and lighter than the Neve's).

    Mount the back tire reversed to get slightly grippier climbing. I always ran mine forwards though and never seemed to have difficulty (went right up Dragon's Molar for example).

    Won't have quite the same absolute traction on crumbly stuff and you may need to pay a wee more attention to weight balance.

    You'll want to spend some effort finding The Right PSI. They may not conform as well for you as me though since I know you run YesTubes and that could be a factor.

  31. #31
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    Do they wear better than nevegals?
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  32. #32
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    i think so.

    the ones I just took off my bike still have miles in them, and i've killd BG/Neve 2.35's in one week of riding afore.

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by bear
    i think so.

    the ones I just took off my bike still have miles in them, and i've killd BG/Neve 2.35's in one week of riding afore.
    My nev 2.1's are running down; I got them in december for the CP skills clinic.
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  34. #34
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    As the new(ish) owner of Hammerhead Bicycles and Coker's successor to the Kenda legacy I figured I'd chime in here with some feedback.

    We did inventory on New Year's Eve and I discovered we had sold 28 SB8 2.35 tires. WE HAVE NOT HAD ONE SIGNIFICANT COMPLAINT from anyone purchasing them! Most often ppl come back saying that the tire exceeded their expectations in most all conditions. Don't get me wrong it is not a big beefy knobby tire...but its well-rounded attributes consistantly catch ppl by surprise. Most of the people buying them are running them as rear tires on 5-6" travel bikes. Honestly I can hardly keep them in stock. **Please note though that the 2.1" SB8 has a much different personality IMHO and I'd classify it more as a racer-boi tire. The larger volume of the 2.35" seems to make the difference.

    Thx,
    CJB

    .

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by CBaron
    As the new(ish) owner of Hammerhead Bicycles and Coker's successor to the Kenda legacy I figured I'd chime in here with some feedback.

    We did inventory on New Year's Eve and I discovered we had sold 28 SB8 2.35 tires. WE HAVE NOT HAD ONE SIGNIFICANT COMPLAINT from anyone purchasing them! Most often ppl come back saying that the tire exceeded their expectations in most all conditions. Don't get me wrong it is not a big beefy knobby tire...but its well-rounded attributes consistantly catch ppl by surprise. Most of the people buying them are running them as rear tires on 5-6" travel bikes. Honestly I can hardly keep them in stock. **Please note though that the 2.1" SB8 has a much different personality IMHO and I'd classify it more as a racer-boi tire. The larger volume of the 2.35" seems to make the difference.

    Thx,
    CJB

    .

    I was eyeballing those 2.35 SB8's when I was in there....
    aLaN AT BikeMojo DOT com

  36. #36
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    Just don't take kendas back to SA, they will stop you at the border.
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  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by austin_bike
    Just don't take kendas back to SA, they will stop you at the border.

    Thinkin' of taking them to the desert.

    Last time I was out there my 2.1 TT's worked well, but not big enough.
    aLaN AT BikeMojo DOT com

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