Strengths: Side knobs, straight line braking, price$
Weaknesses: little slow,
My experience is with:
26x2.5" stickee tread,
front tire (32 psi with tubes)
stumpy FSR comp
So-Cal hard pack and sand
So look, Kenda offers these and many of its tires in multiple configurations so its not fair to bash something without first stating what it is, and where and how you use it. (not to mention tire pressure, tube/less, bike setup, skill, the variables go on and on) This tire exceeds expectations in hard pack, it sticks like glue to a dry beaten path and does very well through the loose sandy stuff that could cause predictable wash out. I find the value of this tire to be very good considering you can pick them up for $25 on sale much of the time. Its a bit slow rolling, but what do I expect from a 2.5" tire, its absolutely worth it for me as the confidence it gives when coming down vs its efficiency going up is a no brainer, something about looking at all that wide tread just makes me feel like bombing that much harder... I cannot speak for its mud shedding ability, or performance in wet conditions.
Strengths: Good grip in rock gardens, even in the rain.
Weaknesses: High rolling resistance.
Both tyres wear well, even on asphalt. Never had a flat. Running DH tubes at 30 PSI.
Loving the grip! Rode rock gardens in the rain, all day, not one slip. However, I've only been riding since 2008, so do not push bike to it's limits.
Not sure if Mr. Tomac himself ran his Nevegal reversed? Have read that it climbs better, the bike came this way. However this is not a bike for ascents so may well swap back, but why mess with success?
Bike Setup: Running 2.5 John Tomac Signature Blue groove on front with reversed 2.5" John Tomac Signature Nevegal on rear. Both Stick-E.
from Ladera Ranch
Date Reviewed: January 24, 2011
Strengths: Amazing, predictable traction.
Weaknesses: Not the fastest tire around, stick-e wears pretty quick.
I'm not sure what the people that are ripping on this tire are doing but this tire has amazing grip on loose socal dirt. The only thing I can think of is the air pressure is off, I'm 195 and run the front at about 32 psi and have NEVER had a blowout. I ran the Nev in the back and had a blowout with 35 psi that caused a bad wreck but never the front. Only other option, and not going to be liked, is that you don't know how to ride. I don't even know what to say about people running that tire in the rear or complaining about it's performance on asphalt. I tend to stay off MTBR because it's become a haven for weekend warriors and rookies(nothing wrong with either but maybe your experience isn't what it should be)but I had to comment on this one. GREAT tire, on par with minion, high roller, Nev and Chunder. 4 chilis just because of wear.
Similar Products Used: Nev, Schwalbe, Specialized.
Bike Setup: Evil Sovereign
from Canadian Rockies
Date Reviewed: January 2, 2011
Strengths: Better than no tire at all.
Weaknesses: Worst tire I ever rode.
Heavy for single ply. V slow rolling. Poor traction. Fastest wear I ever saw.
2.5 is more like a 2.3. I do have a 2.3 that is bigger than my 2.5 Blue Groove.
This is for the 2.5" Stick-E folding. The worst traction of any tire I have tried for dry Rocky Mountains trails. Esp in the loose over hard. And on rocks. Just useless.
Super-fast wear as it is super soft and spends all its time sliding or spinning. Tried it front and rear. No good. Tried airing up. Airing down.
So many better tires. If I had to ride this tire all the time, I would give up biking. Just no fun.
Makes whole bike vibrate when riding to trailhead and speed is reduced in all conditions. I thought that this must mean great traction, but somehow it doesn't.
Desperate to find something this tire was good at, I even tried it in snow. No good in snow either!
Felt kinda ripped off. And I feel guilty that this will end up in the garbage for nothing. I could sell it, but then I'd feel guilty about ripping someone off. I could give it away, but I'd feel guilty about ruining someone's fun and them throwing it in a lake. Maybe the auto people can recycle it.
a Cross Country Rider
from Seattle, WA
Date Reviewed: April 21, 2010
Strengths: Major grip in mud and slick rocks, roots and features. Don't have to worry about weight transfer when climbing out of the saddle; there's so much grip traction is virtually never lost.
Weaknesses: Major weight, very high rolling resistance, very thin sidewall.
Guys at the local shop recommended as their winter tire for the area (Seattle); "we all run this." Well, it works as advertised but the trade-offs are major.
Weight, big tread and soft compound carry an obvious penalty and I pretty much already expected.
What I didn't expect were the extremely thin sidewalls. Even at max PSI the tire is unstable at higher speeds, and all speeds when it comes to cornering. It's also very squishy which is a major power suck; like pedaling in sand or silt.
I only recommended for continuous and pervasive slick and muddy conditions, only if you can accept/suffer the considerable power drain and only if your area's trails are durable enough for wet riding. Even in the always-wet-for-six-months area such as Seattle, I think this is too much tire.
Similar Products Used: None - first big knob tire.
Bike Setup: '07 Trek Fuel EX8.
a Weekend Warrior
from Charlotte, NC USA
Date Reviewed: December 8, 2009
Strengths: The only thing I can say good for these tires is they last a good amount of time.
Weaknesses: Everything else. No traction braking, pedaling, cornering.
Do not waste your money on this tire. I have tried just about everything so I do not feel like I just wasted my money. I have tried high and low tire pressures nothing works. I currently am running this as my front tire and bottom line there is just no confidence in the traction. Forget using this tire on mud. I would have better luck with it on ice. If the trail has just the right amount of moisture in the dirt you can fly with these. But lets face it how many trails are the kind of dirt with the same amount of moisture from start to finish. I think I will find a set of Maxxis Minions to switch out with these. I gave it 3 chilis for value because they have lasted a long time.
Bike Setup: Giant AC1 w/Manitou Swinger, Marzocchi 55r, sram drivetrain.
a Weekend Warrior
from Murfreesboro, TN USA
Date Reviewed: November 3, 2009
Strengths: tough, fat, grippy
I have the 2.5s so these are pretty tough and very grippy. I run about 32psi for all the rocks and drops at my favorite trail. We have rock gardens galore and several 3+ foot drops. The Blue Grooves have held up very well. I've had very few flats. They grip well and have handled very well in the rough. One of the better tires I've used.
a Cross Country Rider
from Pittsfield, MA USA
Date Reviewed: December 2, 2008
Strengths: GREAT TRACTION ON ROCKS AND ROOTS! VERY SECURE FEEL. Good at not caking up with mud.
Weaknesses: FLIMSY SIDEWALLS
I bought these at the end of August 2008 and rode quite a bit on them and really liked them. Great grip on roots, rocks, i.e. your typical New England mountain bike trails.
I seriously thought these were going to be my favorite tires of all time maybe and I've been around for a long time. But this past weekend, I got a tear in the sidewall. I was riding up a hill and over a rock and the rear wheel just slipped off the edge and the rock put a slice in the sidewall. Not huge, but this isn't good.
I didn't really notice how thin the sidewalls were when I bought the tires because of the way they are packaged (folder over in a cardboard hanger). Well, the sidewalls are thin, not paper thin like the Small Block 8's which are even worse, but pretty thin and flimsy and easily ripped.
So for value - gotta rate 'em low - $50/tire and only 3 months use out of them, not good.
Overall, I'm going to rate them high because I was pretty damn happy with the traction, but I wouldn't recommend anybody buy them really.
Weaknesses: No grip on rock, roots or anything wet
i have only used them once-never using them in the wet again! i think they would be ok in dry or on smoother surfaces, they run extremely fast, i am not going to use them where i ride because i simply had no grip at the front, i normally run Tioga Dh 2.3's (which eceryone i know says are rubbish)but i have a lot more cornering confidence in them than the 2.0 Kenda's. i guess im comparing oranges with apples though.
they run very fast though so i flew up all the hills, however i tend to push harder on the decents and need more grip!
Horses for courses,straight speed or grip is the comprimise
My LBS let me know that they had some problems with the Blue Groove and at the time I hadn't seen any problems with my tire. Now, a month later I can see the problems. The side nobs on my back tire are falling off. Once a nob falls off, it almost completely exposes the tube which then explodes on any sharp object it comes into contact with. I would stick with the Nevegal or Maxxis Highroller. I had the DTC (dual tred compound)and don't know if the other Blue Grooves have the same problem. The only possitive thing that came of it all ws that JensonUSA was quick to cover the cost and send me my tire of choice which was very helpful, but the inconvenience of changing two tubes in a 100 meter strech put a bad taste in my mouth for the Blue Groove.
from Bailey, CO, USA
Date Reviewed: October 18, 2008
Strengths: Great cornering. It will hold any line you throw at it in the right conditions. Works really well on the local trails which are loose over hardpack. If you lean it, it will hold it. Haven't gotten a flat yet.
Weaknesses: Get squirly in gentle, long corners. Wears extremely fast on pavement.
Stay off of pavement or you will be buying a new tire very shortly. Great deal since it works well in almost every terrain. If you want a tire that will hold any line you want but not slow you down on the uphills, this is the one for you. Rolls great and is a blast. When my freebie wears out, I'll get another.
Similar Products Used: Specialized, Maxxis, Hutchinson
Bike Setup: 07 SJ FSR Comp. BG up front at 50 PSI. Maxxis Monorail in back at 50 PSI
a Cross Country Rider
from Pittsfield, MA
Date Reviewed: October 9, 2008
Strengths: I used these in the Vermont 50 this year (and for several weeks before and after). It was wet, muddy and slick. The fresh/wet roots were slippery for sure, but I never slipped much. Climbing on rocks, which were slimed with a bit of mud, was a piece of cake - the tires never slipped. The center didn't pack up with mud, but the sides did a little bit, although that wasn't much of a problem at all. No pinch flats or sidewall problems (can't say the same for the Kenda Small Block 8's).
Weaknesses: The rear tire is showing some signs of wear already, but for the great grip, I'd be willing to buy new ones on a more regular basis.
I'm quite happy with 'em and would buy them again.
Blue Groove Fun Ride - Robinson SP, Agawam, MA
Saturday October 27th
Led Rides at all levels *** No arrows this year. ***
(No longer 'self guided', this year the ride will be all led groups.)
Free food and socializing following the ride.
Expert Ride leaves at 9:30 (Ready to go for 9:15) Exp ... Read More »
Blue Groove Charity Mountain Bike Fun Ride (Benefiting Shriners Hospitals For Children)
Pioneer Valley NEMBA
Sunday, October 23, 2011
Robinson State Park (Parking is OUTSIDE the park. See below.)
This event is not to be missed!!!
The cause is great! The riding is great! And it is just a very ... Read More »
Mark your calendars! This event is not to be missed!!!
(Previously the Robinson Toy Ride)
The cause is great! The riding is great! And it is just a very fun atmosphere!
Last year we had a HUGE crowd and we are expecting even more this year!!! This event has been growing expon ... Read More »
Hey guys,anyone using the Blue Groove Lite DTC's from Kenda?
I've used Karma's and liked it,but I'm looking for more traction in the rear,and the tread on the BG's looks more deep,so I suppose it will work better in loose dirt.
I will consider any other options in the 2.0/sub 450gram range,such as ... Read More »
For what I ride, how I ride, and where I ride....The Blue Groove was the all time greatest 26 inch tire for me. Kenda has yet to make this tire in 29er form. My first tire setup for the 29er were Nevegals front and rear. They kinda sucked as a rear tire for me. With the 29er contact patch being ... Read More »