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  1. #1
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    New question here. Schwalbe tyres (26 x 2.0) - KOJAK or MARATHON SUPREME?

    Wondering if anyone has experience with both the Schwalbe Kojak and the Schwalbe Marathon Supreme - both in 26 x 2.0 widths.

    I understand that the Marathon Supreme has a grippier rubber compound than the Kojak, and although it is a great tyre I probably don't need its extra puncture protection. In other words, I want a fast tyre and would prefer the lower weight of the Kojak, and its higher speed to the extra puncture protection on the Supreme. It would also be good to know if the Kojak can be ridden on unsealed surfaces, packed trails, etc.

    I guess my main questions are, is the Kojak much faster than the Supreme, and does the Kojak give up much in terms of dry cornering grip to the Supreme?

    Also, I know the tread on the Supreme does not matter much for wet roads, but does going to a full slick from a semi-slick (specifically from the Supreme to the Kojak) create much compromise in grip on unsealed or hard packed dry trails or gravel?

    Are these tyres different enough that I should have both, or is one definitely better than the other?
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  2. #2
    Nouveau Retrogrouch SuperModerator
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    Quote Originally Posted by lookin
    Wondering if anyone has experience with both the Schwalbe Kojak and the Schwalbe Marathon Supreme - both in 26 x 2.0 widths.

    I understand that the Marathon Supreme has a grippier rubber compound than the Kojak, and although it is a great tyre I probably don't need its extra puncture protection. In other words, I want a fast tyre and would prefer the lower weight of the Kojak, and its higher speed to the extra puncture protection on the Supreme. It would also be good to know if the Kojak can be ridden on unsealed surfaces, packed trails, etc.

    I guess my main questions are, is the Kojak much faster than the Supreme, and does the Kojak give up much in terms of dry cornering grip to the Supreme?

    Also, I know the tread on the Supreme does not matter much for wet roads, but does going to a full slick from a semi-slick (specifically from the Supreme to the Kojak) create much compromise in grip on unsealed or hard packed dry trails or gravel?

    Are these tyres different enough that I should have both, or is one definitely better than the other?
    Neither tire is going to work well on trails/dirt/gravel. The Supreme is just a grooved slick. Both are good road tires.

    If you want a tire that can be used on dirt and is OK on pavement look at the Marathon Extreme.
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  3. #3
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    there was a review of few schwalbe tyres and marathon supreme was really bad in terms of rolling resistance.those grooves are deep and in the middle and they killed rolling res. other few marathons and big apples fared well.

  4. #4
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    thanks for those comments

    in terms of the Marathon Extreme recommendation, I should say that it definitely has too much tread and rolling resistance for what I am after - rather than 'a tire that can be used on dirt and is OK on pavement', I want one that is very good on road and acceptable for non-aggressive riding on dirt surfaces (thanks for the suggestion though!)

  5. #5
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    im looking for similar thing, really want big apples or some smooth rolling big volume marathons but they are unavailable in my country ( oh the horror...

  6. #6
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    i have heard that maxxis hookworms are great for cornering (26 x 2.5) but they are heavy (1250g - per tyre that is!)

    the schwalbe big apple also exists as the 'supermoto' version (same width but slightly different weight which probably indicates slighty different construction, perhaps different puncture protection, but same tread and 2.35 width)

    both of these are significantly heavier than either the Kojak or the Marathon Supreme though

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by enio
    there was a review of few schwalbe tyres and marathon supreme was really bad in terms of rolling resistance.those grooves are deep and in the middle and they killed rolling res. other few marathons and big apples fared well.
    Can any one else confirm this? I'm also considering both these tires in a 700c size (28-35) and was under the impression that, with all things being equal, the kojak was was slightly faster while the marathon supreme offers a little better road grip in dry and wet conditions and the supreme also offers a little better puncture protection.

    I've searched for reviews, but I haven't heard that the supremes are really bad in terms of rolling resistance, and especially not worse than the Big Apple.

  8. #8
    Steve Briggs
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    LOL! Oddly enough, I had the same dilemma and ordered both the Kojak and the Marathon Supreme. They are en route, and it's getting into winter here, so I'll not be doing much riding for the next 4 months. I'll try to remember to report back. I'll be using them on the back of pretty much equivalent recumbent Vision R40's, and on a 17K work commute (each way), mostly.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shurenuff
    Can any one else confirm this? I'm also considering both these tires in a 700c size (28-35) and was under the impression that, with all things being equal, the kojak was was slightly faster while the marathon supreme offers a little better road grip in dry and wet conditions and the supreme also offers a little better puncture protection.
    If you are considering 700c x 28mm, an Ultremo would be a lot faster than either of them.

    The Kojak is a faster tire than a Marathon Supreme (which isn't known for being fast). The Kojak 35mm runs slightly small, my version measured 33mm wide on a 24mm internal width rim. Unless you want long mileage and great flat protection, I can't see why you'd consider a Marathon Supreme. They are smooth riding and durable, not fast.

  10. #10
    Steve Briggs
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    I'll tell you lads these tires are for the back end of my bent (a Vision R40 - I have 4 of them). I don't like skinny tires, I want fat slicks that'll absorb bumps without slowing me doon.

  11. #11
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    It just so happens I have a set of 26X2.0 Schwalbe Kojaks on one bike and a set of 26X2.0 Marathon Supremes on another bike. All four of these tires are new as of 2018. I do not know if the Kojaks have changed but the Marathon Supremes definitely have changed tire compound not long ago. These second generation Marathon Supremes now use Schwalbe's OneStar compound which rolls really, really well. This is the same compound used on Schwalbe's best road tires.

    They have been tested in the lab of Bicycle Rolling Resistance and found to have VERY low rolling resistance. https://www.bicyclerollingresistance...n-supreme-2016

    I use the maximum pressure indicated on the tires which is 70 lbs for the Kojaks and 65 lbs for the Supreme's. Near the house there is a very straight street with a very slight incline. When I am riding downhill I can coast very far (at least two miles) with the Kojaks but even farther with the Supremes. I can feel the difference especially when riding back up this incline using both bikes. The length of the incline is 2 miles. Sometimes I ride on the cement sidewalk and sometimes on the blacktop street. Do not worry - there never are any pedestrians on the sidewalk since it is an industrial area and everyone drives their car.

    Sometimes the landscape sprinklers are on and I get to try out the wet concrete abilities of the tires. It seems the Supremes grip a little better than the Kojaks. I can certainly lean over a little ways and not feel any slipping.

    Although both are built differently insofar as the puncture protection is concerned I find they come out about equally in practical use because I use Orange Seal in all four tires along with Schwalbe tubes. These tubes hold air a lot longer than cheapies. One only need check the pressure once a month instead of once a week.

    The cost of the Supremes is very pricey - at about $80 each (but just saw a sale on Chain Reaction Cycles for about $55 each) and the Kojaks are about $16 each.

    In the future will I buy the Marathon Supremes again or will I purchase the Kojaks for a MUCH better price? Are the Supremes worth the extra price? Well I will not be purchasing the Supremes again since the Kojaks give good performance but the Supremes are definitely the better tires based on the OneStar compound.

    Happy riding!

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