29er tire purchase - looking for advice- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    29er tire purchase - looking for advice

    Hi everyone--I'm new to this forum and I am looking for thoughts on changing up my 29er tires. If you would like to weigh in, read on:

    1. I started riding mountain bikes in 1989. Had a cro-mo celeste Bianchi. Great bike. Upgraded in the 90s to a Trek 7000. Raced that bike in Vermont. Then in 2010 I bought a Scott Scale 29er. Changed up the tires from some heavy, nobby tires to Small Block 8s. Raced that bike, too. Really like those tires. Light weight, enough traction, roll fast.

    2. Just got my first FS bike two months ago.. Santa Cruz Tall Boy C with SRAM tubeless wheels and Maxxis Minion DHF 2.3 tires. These tires have a weight of close to 1000 grams per tire and you can feel it. They are very nobby, and seem to be for downhilling. I do mostly XC with some up and down riding in Massachusetts on various trail systems. I like to climb a lot so extra weight is an issue.

    I'm contemplating replacing these Maxxis tires with some Vittoria TNT tires. This would shave around 400 grams total (almost a pound) from the weight of the bike, and more importantly, lower the rolling weight of the wheels. (I might even go back to tubes, as I rarely get flats. I am 6'2" and 161 lbs.)

    SO:

    1. Anyone have an opinion on this idea? Anyone done it?

    2. Thoughts on which Vittoria tire (and why) Barzo/Mezcal, etc

    3. 2.1 vs 2.25 Width

    4. TLR (?) vs TNT (tube or no tube)??

    Notes:
    -I really like Vittoria products. Have the tires on my road and cyclocross bikes (I have raced extensively).
    - I ride in Massachusetts mostly on blue and black trails with a lot of rocks and roots. I don't favor super technical stuff but do encounter a lot of stones and fallen trees and roots.

    Thank you.

  2. #2
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    After you beat those 25mm rims up with 2.25 tires on your rocks get wider rims the next time around. I'd go 35mm to use 2.235-2.6 tires. Maybe an insert for the rear will help now.

  3. #3
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    This is something I wish more people thought about. Yes, Minions were designed to be downhill tires. Why nearly all bikes are spec'd with them is beyond me other than the fact that everyone and their grandmother seems to adore and fawn over the Minion because "they hook up so well" or whatever. It's way more tire than most people need, and most people have no idea how much Minions slow them down compared to ...nearly anything else.

    Follow your gut on the tires. You like Vittoria? Do it. I've heard good things about them, but I've never run their tires. I've run Maxxis Rekons and Ardents and Aggressors and Ikons and Crossmarks ...it basically depends on what I'm using them for. I would say, you have fairly modern wheels - I don't know what the inner width on those is, but I'd say don't get anything smaller than a 2.25 if you have a 25mm inner width. Nothing smaller than a 2.3 if you're at 30mm. If you really have questions about what width to run on those wheels, contact Vitoria - I'm sure they'll be happy to make some recommendations regarding their products.

  4. #4
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    Thank you. These wheels are inner width 25mm.

    Good point about the Minions. They're not bad tires, just really more of a downhill tire.

    Have a great week, enjoy the riding.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cotharyus View Post
    This is something I wish more people thought about. Yes, Minions were designed to be downhill tires. Why nearly all bikes are spec'd with them is beyond me other than the fact that everyone and their grandmother seems to adore and fawn over the Minion because "they hook up so well" or whatever. It's way more tire than most people need, and most people have no idea how much Minions slow them down compared to ...nearly anything else.
    I couldn't agree more with this statement. If you are really crushing downhills, then the added grip of the Minions must be fantastic, but the extra rolling resistance of these tires is more than I am willing to deal with. I do east coast riding also - rocky, technical trails but not a whole lot of prolonged descents. I've been happy with the 2.4 Maxxis Rekons. They aren't weight weenie tires, but they roll reasonably well and I haven't gashed the sidewall on them, which is a pretty common experience for me. My only knock on them is that the side knobs have a tendency to break down somewhat quickly.

    If Vittoria's appeal to you, I'd look at the 2.35" Agarro. It's on the heavier side, but the general consensus is that they roll well. I'm personally not so hung up on the weight - with a little luck it just means that the tire will last longer. I will probably try this tire next.

  6. #6
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    Try an Ardent race on the rear and keep the DHF front for starters

  7. #7
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    I had Maxxis 3C DHF front and 3C Rekon rear. Where I ride on rocky AZ trails 3C Rekon was shot in 3 months. DHF wasn't so good for hardpack and it is heavy. I now have 2C Rekon front and rear much better traction in front for hardpack. And wear on the rear is much better. Faster rolling also. Tires are 2.4 and weigh 810 grams? Not bad....

  8. #8
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    I ran 2.2" Vittoria Barzos on my XC hardtail for the last couple years. Really liked them.

    This year, I sold that bike and bought a Kona Honzo, and after messing around with Rekons and Ardent Race tires and getting constant pinch flats and punctures, I put a 2.5" DHF on the front and a 2.3" Aggressor on the back. I can now ride this bike just like an enduro bike, and have beaten most of my DH times from last year that were done on the enduro bike. I'm also close to beating my XC times from last year. So in my case, the big "DH" tires aren't really slowing me down at all. In fact I'm faster everywhere except for low angle, high speed climbing. I imagine when I lose a couple more pounds I will get PRs there too though.
    Bikes belong in Wilderness areas.:)

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