Kenda Small Block 8 29 29er Tire

3.82/5 (22 Reviews)
MSRP : $24.98


  • Store Price

Product Description

The Kenda Small Block 8 is part of cycling legend JohnTomac,The Small Block 8 uses a series of 8 small Nevegal shaped knobsTo provide excellent bite onTheTrack. Excellent hard pack raceTire 8 Nevegal shaped but smaller knobs acrossTheTire for better bite DTC DualTread Compound offers cornering grip with faster center line acceleration One ofThe fastest rollingTires inThe Kenda Premium line Weight(claimed): 355 g 60TPI Wire Bead


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Reviews 1 - 15 (22 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:3
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Kiran a Weekend Warrior

Date Reviewed: April 16, 2014

Strengths:    smooth rolling, light, great for hard pack and pavement.

Weaknesses:    Anything wet and loose.... you're gonna have a bad time....

Bottom Line:   
Hmmm... I feel like a pro flying through the woods on sweeping turns and switchbacks that are hard packed. Unfortunately that's like maybe 20% of the trails I ride.... So today in the midst's of feeling like a pro I finally pushed the tire to its limit; over some loose leaves in a transition between turns... As the bike shot out from under me the first thing i thought about was.... I should let the people know... then i made friends with a thorn patch.... So here it is... if you think that hey i could ride these aggressively thru/on loose sand NO!, wet things NOOPPPEE!, leaves NEIN!, mud its wet sand/silt sooo NOOO!
But.... It teaches you soooo much. It makes you analyze the trail like a fiend, because if you loose traction its hard to get it back with these tires.
So if your going to compete prob not the tire for you at least not as a front tire.
It sure keeps ya alert!

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by DITD a Racer

Date Reviewed: January 19, 2014

Strengths:    Fast rolling tire, sidewalls have held up better than anything I have ever run, seem to last a long time. I literaly run them until no tread is left.

Weaknesses:    none really

Bottom Line:   
I have run this 29er sct version for 2 1/2 years and have only cut one sidewall,, I use em for everything, tech single track, smooth single track, pavement gravel you name it. Also I use em front and rear both. I dont have any reason to buy another tire.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   berryman

Duration Product Used:   2.5 years

Price Paid:    $35.00

Purchased At:   jenson usa

Similar Products Used:   pythons

Bike Setup:   scott rc 29er

Overall Rating:2
Value Rating:3
Submitted by Temaki69

Date Reviewed: April 21, 2013

Strengths:    Very light and fast rolling.
handles great on hard packed surfaces


Weaknesses:    Not a good tire for sandy & loose conditions.
Very weak side walls.


Bottom Line:   
I purchased a single speed 29er for riding XC trails. Bike came with both front and rear tires kenda small block. I loved the lightness of the tires and the way they handle on hard packed terrain.
i live in southern california, so the only time i see hard pack is after the rains (which we hardly get any).
once the terrain begins to loosen up it was a huge change... i find myself sliding left and right. I am ok with this, its a bit more tricky, but so far i have managed. The biggest disappointment is the weakness of the side walls. I have experienced 2 pinch flats so far (this is something i have never had problems with the specialized branded tires on my geared bike). It could be just me and my riding style. both times happened while riding uphill and making a turn on rocky conditions. Next set of tires will be tubeless..



Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by TikiGoddess

Date Reviewed: March 28, 2013

Strengths:    light weight and fast

Weaknesses:    poor traction on muddy, wet surfaces, slippery on snowy pavement and super scary to run on sand

Bottom Line:   
These tires came stock on my 2012 Giant Rainer 29er and my initial impression of them was that they are amazing. These tires are responsive and fast on the pavement and packed trail. However, when I rode them on more technical stuff, they flat out stunk! I had to go thru muddy paths from melted snow, rocks and some sand and I was always scared of wiping out. I still ride it on trails but I try to stay away from the mud from now on. My bf is proposing switching out the front for a Maxxis Crossmark 29er and it seems like a good compromise. I would not mind keeping these as rear tires but the front has got to go if I'm ever going to do more serious stuff.

Overall Rating:2
Value Rating:2
Submitted by treesmasher a Cross Country Rider

Date Reviewed: December 15, 2012

Strengths:    This tire is light and rolls fast on the pavement and hard pack trail. You can find them pretty cheap online.

Weaknesses:    This tire is a death trap on the front of a bike in the woods. The first time out on this tire I hit just a little loam and I was doing the monkey dance. I spin this tire out on the back all the time also. There are better tires for going fast.

Bottom Line:   
This tire is good when it dry and not loose and does great on the commuter bike but that is it. If your a superb rider and really light and super fit it might work on the trails but I don`t know how they pull it off. My friends that race and are super fast don`t like this tire either. I would only use it on the street or a bike I`m selling.

Expand full review >>

Price Paid:    $48.00

Purchased At:   LBS


Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by ironsinker

Date Reviewed: December 7, 2012

Strengths:    Fast, smooth, good all round xc type tire. The product description of this tire is right on and it deserves 5 chilis IMO.

Weaknesses:    It will not work for everyone in all situations....what a bummer!!

Bottom Line:   
The 2.1 size tires came front and back on my 29er. The PSI was at 60 from the store. This was way too high and felt uncomfortable even on a gravel road much less a trail. I lowered them to 40 PSI (tubes) which was much better.

Being a newbie the only thing I noticed was I felt very fast on my new bike. I did not have any problems with grip on any of the trails I rode in Virginia. I'm not the fastest guy out there, but I am pretty aggressive and I had no problems even at 40 PSI weight 180lbs. I was thinking about lowering the psi but what's the point if all is working great.

My friend gave me two 2.2 Nevegals and said I needed real MTB tires. They do look good on a MTB!! I put them on and it felt like I was pulling him behind me compared to the SB8's. I also struggled to keep up with the slowest guy I ride with. I then left the Nevegal up front and put the SB8' on the rear and it still lacked the speed I was use to. I think the SB8 handles better too.

I ended up putting both SM8's back on and I think I'm going to leave it. These tires make me feel like a pro and I have not had one problem on the trails I ride as far as grip. I don't see much mud but roots, rocks, leaves, and loose dirt seem to not be a problem...at least for me.

So my point for writing the review is to express that you may not need big Knobbies like you think you do. The SB8 or other XC, race type tires may more than enough grip for what you do or need. I've tried to get my friends to try them but they think they need big, slow, knobbie tires even though they see me hammering up and down the hills way ahead of them. I think they just like the look of the big dogs!!

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by willatx

Date Reviewed: May 12, 2012

Strengths:    Keep them on the dry track. They'll hold up a little on moist track if air pressure is correct and running tubeless.

Weaknesses:    sidewalls feel thin but no problems yet riding rocky trails around austin.

Bottom Line:   
Quick tire, possible race tire.

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by TreeKiller a Cross Country Rider from Stokesdale, NC

Date Reviewed: January 18, 2012

Strengths:    FAAASSTTT - Fastest rolling tire I've ever ridden.

Weaknesses:    If there is wet mud anywhere near this tire you better be prepared to become a ice skater!

Bottom Line:   
Will most likely be my new summer time rear tire. The jury is still out on it being my choice for a front. However, they are coming OFF the bike until late spring!!!! However, these are hardpack race tires and you cannot fault them too much for sucking in the sticky Carolina red clay.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Anything fast or technical

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Purchased At:   Came on bike

Similar Products Used:   Specialized Captain's, WTB Weirwolf's & Velociraptors, Dart/Smoke Combo.

Bike Setup:   Airborne Goblin

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by jeffbankman a Cross Country Rider from northampton, ma

Date Reviewed: September 29, 2011

Strengths:    These tire rock!! Super fast rolling, corner like a champ, rail around the corners and keep you smiling. I just did the Vermont 50 with this tire on the rear and the Maxxis Ignitor on the front. Had no problems and blasted right through the mud which was quite deep at times. Obviously, if you try to stand up while climbing in areas that are wet they will spin on you. I normally ride them front and rear set up tubeless and love them. Just decided to put something with a bit more tred up front knowing that this race was going to be muddy.

Weaknesses:    None so far

Bottom Line:   
If it is not your first time on a bike and have some skills then these tires will do you justice. I have been riding for over 20 years and have dialed in my riding, hence I know when I can stand, where to place my weight and etc. when climbing. Perhaps they will work for riders at all skill levels but I can't say for sure. Like I said before, I ride these front and rear and ride them in most all conditions except mud and sand. (unless I have to) They have been great everywhere I have taken them I hope to get many miles out of them. This tire is perfect for the rear. If you have a 29er, run this tubeless and have some skills then this tire works great on the front as well. I run mine at 28 psi and have never had a problem.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Earl's trails

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $40.00

Purchased At:   Kenda

Similar Products Used:   Nevegal, slant six, maxxis ignitor and many others

Bike Setup:   Tall Boy 29er

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by rufio a Weekend Warrior from woodbridge, va

Date Reviewed: September 14, 2011

Strengths:    Fast. Very fast. Be prepared to be using a taller gear than usual because this tire flys. Super low rolling resistance.

Weaknesses:    I have flatted more times with this tire than any other tire I have ridden on. It has nothing for puncture protection. This could be remedied by going tubeless.

Bottom Line:   
These tires gave my super heavy hardtail the giddy-up it was sorely lacking. As I stated above I have flatted quite a few times with these guys since installation, but the over all speed is so nice that I'll put up with it. I do not have any grip issues with these because I am running a pair of Velocity P-35s. The wide rim gives the tire an awesome boost in volume and a needy contact patch. After these guys are burnt up I'm going to give the Slant-Six a try.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Similar Products Used:   Kenda Karma, Specialized Fast Trak, Specialized Renegade.

Bike Setup:   34 lbs. hardtail brawler.

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by RatchAttack a Cross Country Rider from Ontario Canada

Date Reviewed: July 28, 2011

Strengths:    -Fast rolling
-Good on hardpack


Weaknesses:    -anything close to loose soil and these tires break out

Bottom Line:   
These tires came stock on my Cannondale, they work great on super hardpack, the kind thats almost pavement. Anything remotely loose and they send you all over the place. Not very confidence inspiring. If all you ride is dry hardpack then this is your tire..... if you mountain bike in the real world though then move onto something better. Lots of choices out there.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month


Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by The Trooper a Racer from Running Springs, CA

Date Reviewed: November 14, 2010

Strengths:    Fast, supple, with suprising grip. Good price, particularly if you shop around.

Weaknesses:    None

Bottom Line:   
This tire is exactly what I was looking for (in a rear tire). It's fast, light, and with plenty of grip. Plus, the tire has a large volume. I run about 29 psi (with a tube), and find the tire rails corners while providing a supple ride. Dip below that pressure and the ride becomes a little squishy, particularly on pavement. Kenda hit a home run with the Small Block 8.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Rim Nordic

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $35.00

Similar Products Used:   Specialized Renegade

Bike Setup:   Specialized carbon Stumpjumper HT. The Captain on the front, Small Block 8 on the rear.

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by vack a Cross Country Rider from Johnstown, PA

Date Reviewed: August 4, 2010

Strengths:    Surprisingly the Grip in all conditions

Weaknesses:    They are not tubeless specific.....I know that's a misnomer these days, but......

Bottom Line:   
I live in Western PA, so with that said, the weather here is pretty unpredicable at times. Trails that you ride one day are hard and smooth with nice logs, rocks, roots. Yet the next day after it rains, it all changes. However, these tires surprised me big time. Maybe it's the 29'er thing or maybe they are just that good. But I have to say, so far I've out gripped some other tires (On friends bikes) on steep loose climbs, over wet or damp rocks and logs, and at Raystown when (Super Hard Pack), they're like slicks on a race coarse. So after a short period of time with these I'm thoroughly impressed. I'm only going 4 Chilis for overall at this point because I haven't had them that long yet, and 5 for value because they came with my ride. A further review will come when I convert to tubeless, and get more mileage on them.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Colorodo Trail

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Purchased At:   Came with Bike

Similar Products Used:   First 29'er Tire used

Bike Setup:   Sette Razzo 29'er, Factory set up, save for my Ergo Grips, and my Crank Bros Pedals

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by q a Cross Country Rider from Vienna, VA

Date Reviewed: July 26, 2010

Strengths:    Fast rolling. The tire walls are thin and the rubber is super soft. This provides soft cushioney ride and great grip.

Weaknesses:    Slippery when wet, The tire walls are thin and the rubber is super soft. Although it hasn't happened yet, I can foresee fast wear and possible tearing.

Bottom Line:   
After trying out SB8, I realize what a trash Bontrager XDX was.
SB8 is much lighter, faster, has much more grip on hard pack (which is mostly what I ride), climbs better, Leaps over tall buildings in a single bound... you get the idea.
I never realized how much difference tire selection would make on your overall speed. I was on higher gear throughout my entire ride compared to Bontrager XDX. SB8 is like riding a road bike on trails!
PS: Stay off the wet stuff.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Wakefield

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $55.00

Similar Products Used:   Bontrager XDX, 29x2.1

Bike Setup:   Gary Fisher Superfly hardtail, SB8(Small Block8) 2.1 (30psi) on front and rear

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by trapperK2 a Cross Country Rider from WI

Date Reviewed: June 15, 2010

Strengths:    Fast Rolling - Light - I love how they roll w/29er attributes and in the right conditions they corner very well.

Weaknesses:    Thin sidewalls - Must run higher pressure to avoid pinch flats (heavier riders) - Poor traction/grip when you really need it.

Bottom Line:   
Nobody will buy these as an all around tire - However, I have done 4 races and a whole lot of technical trails with them. One flat, due to my under inflating ignorance. I have
"grown" with these tires. It has made me a better technical rider - I really pushed these tires early on to see what they could take. Yes, I dumped out a few times in some fast turns but once you know your limits on the pitfalls of this tire - the benefits far outweigh the bad. Hang on tight and crank!

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Underdown

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Purchased At:   Came w/ike

Similar Products Used:   IRC Mythos

Bike Setup:   29er Motobecane Ti

Reviews 1 - 15 (22 Reviews Total) | Next 15

Review Options:  Sorted by Latest Review | Sort by Best Rating


S-Works Renegade vs. Small Block 8 (29's)

I've got Renegades on my Stumpy HT. Would Small block 8's roll any better? Quieter on pavement? thx bobRead More »

Small Block 8 with Stans Arch 29 / Won't Stay Inflated?!

New 29er Stans Arch, factory yellow tape mounted with brand-new Kenda Small Block 8 2.1 won't hold air for 24hrs. Start out at 42# and end up with 10#, maybe in 8-10 hrs later. They inflated nicely and did the soapy water / shakey thing many times. I've hung them, layed them on bucket horizon ... Read More »

small block 8 vs spec fast trak lk - 29'er

i searched a bit but cannot find a thread with this specific topic... i'm going to be racing on 29er i9's with stan's rims. i want a dry/race tire and i'm checking out the kenda small block 8 and the fast trak lk (control not SWorks). i will be using yellow tape and sealant. it looks like the ... Read More »

29 x 2.1 Small Block 8's...need a good deal.

i am looking for two 29 x 2.1 Small Block 8 tires, anyone know where a good deal can be found?Read More »

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