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Thread: El Rey 27.5+

  1. #1
    Proud lame eBiker
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    El Rey 27.5+

    So I rode a few 27.5+ bikes at Vegas the other week but it seemed the two bikes I rode had horrendous tire picks. The traction just wasn't found in the dessert at least as for what I was expecting.
    At any rate it fueled my quest to try it out on familiar trails and a familiar bike. Large El Rey.
    It had Maxxis 2.2 on Derby 35mm rims.....now I built up and installed some Trailblazer 27.5x2.8" tires on WTB i35 rims.
    Fit and finish look pretty spot on. And those tires snap in to place veeeeery well on those rims. Set them up tubeless. Plenty of clearance all around.
    It dropped the bottom bracket about 10mm.
    Off to get it dirty this weekend and then again sometime next week on some rockier stuff. Will report back later.



    From underneath to show chain stay yoke clearance.



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  2. #2
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    The Trailblazers remind me a lot of one of my favorite tires, MutanoRaptors. Those should be a lot of fun to ride!
    -Aaron G.

    "Before D.W., "anti-squat" was referred to as pedal feedback."

  3. #3
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    Nice! Anyone know if there are plans for an "official" Ventana 29+ or 27.5+ full suspension frame?
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  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by laffeaux View Post
    Nice! Anyone know if there are plans for an "official" Ventana 29+ or 27.5+ full suspension frame?
    I'm sure Sherwood can build you a 29+ or 27+ fs frame. Ventana specializes in customs....give'em a call

  5. #5
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    So, how did this experiment turn out? How did the 650b+ setup compare to the narrower 29er tires? What's the widest tire you were able to fit? Still using the bike as pictured or did you go back to the 29 setup?
    Each bicycle owned exponentially increases the probability that none is working correctly.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by laffeaux View Post
    So, how did this experiment turn out? How did the 650b+ setup compare to the narrower 29er tires? What's the widest tire you were able to fit? Still using the bike as pictured or did you go back to the 29 setup?

    I'm still out on the subject. The rear tire seems plenty fine. I'm still having a hard time coming to terms with the front end.

    The front tire pushes hard when it's being loaded hard. Like the old feeling of a 26x2.1 tire being run with too little pressure in the olden days before suspension. Under normal trail riding uphill/downhill/here and there it feels fine and super smooth. But when things get heated up and I'm real hard on the front brake and cornering trying to hold a tight line, the tire begins to fold under and start making that oh so familiar sound right before those old 26x2.1 tires would roll over and play dead.

    Reasons: I'm a big guy. 6'2" and 245lbs. And I use the front tire A LOT more than most people. Some people tap the rear brake and drift the back end around to get the bike to turn. I'm not one of them. I stab the brakes at the last minute loading the front tire hard, then off the brake and in to the corner. I'm a heavy on the front end kind of cornerer.


    Given this I have to run around 20psi to get the tire to hold it's shape, which kind of negates the reason to get the Plus sized tires. Normally I'm running the Derby 29er rim which if 35mm wide and 2.3" tires with heavy sidewalls. With the 27.5+ I'm running the WTB rims and WTB Trailblazer 2.8" Light/Fast tires.
    With the heavy sidewalls on the 29ers, and also the 27.5(Tough/Slow Riddler and Breakout Derby rims 40mm)on my Zeus, I can get away with pretty low psi, low 20's, and not get the wallowing feel in hard cornering.


    I honestly am not that blown away with the extra traction of the 27.5+ on 95% of my riding. Where I really do notice it is is on a section of a climb that gets relatively steep and is covered in small loose rock. It's a bit of a balancing act on the 2.3 and 2.5" tires, but the 2.8" 27.5+ tires definitely FLOAT up that section without a int of traction loss. Like, it's VERY noticeable how much easier it is.


    I have seen that a few comp0anies are showing part numbers for some 27.5+ tires in a 60tpi version instead of the paper thin 120tpi that are out now. But as of yet, none of those 60tpi tires have arrived in stock.

    I am holding out on my final verdict until I get a chance to ride the stiffer sidewall versions of a 27.5+ tire because THEN I might be able to justify it. But ride not, it's novel, but not earth shattering. For me and where I'm riding.

    I think for someone who is not that aggressive in the corners, or someone whom is lightweight, the current batch of 27.5+ tires would be beinficial adding more rubber to the ground and make the bike feel more secure. But for now, that lightweight casing isn't up to the challenge for what I'm trying to make it do.

    I talked with a development guy a year ago about the 27.5+ and 29+ stuff and he was very much sold on the hardtail division and new rider division as that's where he felt the larger rubber side made the most sense. But for aggressive riders or riders who are experienced enough to be comfortable with their tires drifting through a corner, the bigger tires weren't going to be a hit for that segment.


    I imagine if you weren't a super aggressive front end rider, and you lived in an area that had a lot of rubble over hardpack, then the + sizes would be awesome with their super stable footprint.
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  7. #7
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    Awesome!!! Thanks for all of the info.

    I've been running 29+ on my El Gordo and have really like the larger tires. My only experience is with the Chucacabbras which is a 3" tire, and I'm running the bike fully rigid, so it's completely different than a FS. The El Gordo gets incredible traction through turns with the big tires (I'm 6'+ and 170 pounds). Kind of the opposite of you though, the only place when I've found they don't do well is in loose gravelly steep granny-gear climbs - as long as I keep weight on the rear they do about the same as a 2.3 or 2.4 tire, but if I shift my weight forward I loose traction immediately. That may be more a function of the tread pattern than the width though.

    It's great to hear your thoughts on the 27+ FS. Thanks again!!
    Each bicycle owned exponentially increases the probability that none is working correctly.

  8. #8
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    A few more thoughts.....

    Been riding this bike more and more recently.

    I have swapped a WTB Bridger 3.0 tire n the front and running 18psi the past rides is leaving me pretty pleased with the front end control.

    The Bridger definitely has many more lugs all around the side of the tire. Hooks up great! Zero slippage. Zero wandering feeling. Just planted. And at 18psi it seems to be holding itself up under my cornering style just fine where the 2.8 Trailblazer I had been running was just too whimpy and rolled under itself at anything less than 20psi.

    One of the last rides I was following a pretty quick rider through a 2.5mile downhill swoopy section of trail that we both know exceptionally well. It was pretty cool to see him(on a Zeus and 2.4" tires) swooping to the outside of the turns while I was just as comfortable running it up the inside of every turn(even the muddy-sih ones) and carrying just as much speed. And Zero strangeness or hint of slip from the front wheel. Pounded through a section of rough rock and the bike felt like it has a lot more travel than what it actually has.

    Still can't say that the tires help me climb anything better...but that's just because I suck at climbing and we don't have a lot of sandy/loose hills to climb around NorCal right now.

    Can say that the bike is a whole lot more fun to let the speed ramp up and start nearing the comfort edge with the 27.5+ compared to the 29' 2.2' tires I had been on there. No doubt the bike is a faster accelerator with the 29ers on there, and when racing starts up in a few months I'll be throwing the 29er wheels back on for that. But for all out trail bashing and having a blast ripping around, the 27.5+ is damn fun.
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  9. #9
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    Thanks for all the descriptive input on your plus wheel experience. I am currently building up a GT Zaskar 9r that is only a bare frame at this point. I am still trying to figure out what will be best for wheels.... normal 29er or 27.5+ with 2.8 tires. I have also considered running the plus rear and 29er front to minimize the BB drop. I could still run a beefy 2.4 to 2.5 front and will also be increasing the fork travel from 100 to 120mm.

    If you have a minute and could measure your wheel height and maybe the rear spacing between your chainstays, I could get a better idea. My frame has exactly 3 inches of spacing and the following specs:

    HA = 69.5
    BB height = 13 inches
    Fork offset = 45mm
    BB drop = 42mm
    Seat angle = 73.5

    Thnx!
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