Schwalbe Big Betty 26 x 2.4 Tire: Mid-weight Freeride and All Mountain tire for front or rear. Triple compound: three different rubbers optimize grip, rolling speed and durability. PaceStar: extremely fast XC compound with an easy rolling base...
Strengths: Has a death grip on the trail; very versatile in terms of different terrain. I ride here in SoCal and terrain can vary greatly, but mostly crushed granite and rocky, and Big Betty's grip on SoCal terrain is tops.
Weaknesses: Wears out fast! My tire is practically new (less than 1 yr) and it's all worn out already. Tires can feel like riding in mud when have it at the rear and ran at lower pressures. Expensive for a tire that wears out fast. Maybe heavy in weight to some people.
I run my Big Betty for rear tire duties. It has grip like no other; doesn't break easily when braking hard and if it does, very controllable. Never ran it up front, but I recommend this, from my experience, as a go-to rear tire. Only complaints are: 1) Tire wears out fast, my knobbies in the middle are almost all chewed up, side knobs are still there. This may be because some of my rides include riding paved roads to get to single track or back. 2) Expensive! For the type of wear it exhibits, it's not worth it. 3) It feels like riding in mud, when ran in lower pressures (although even in higher pressures, it does feel slow.) For what it is designed for, free ride/all mountain, the weight is not really all that bad. Although is does weigh more than the rest of the Schwalbe line-up. Overall, I love the grip on these tires; five star performance on rocks, crushed granite, loamy, sandy, hardpack terrain. Main gripe on these is that these tires can wear out fast on rough terrain. I' m gonna be neutral on my ratings for this tire. Grip is awesome, but the price does not justify the fast wear on these tires.
a Cross Country Rider
from Sedona, AZ USA
Date Reviewed: June 4, 2011
Strengths: hooks up in any terrain. high volume for weight. tall. wears well.
Weaknesses: expensive. a real mud pig.
The triple compound (trailstar) is great in dry, rocky, rocky filled riverbeds, slick rock, loose dusty terrain. And wears well too. This is the best freeride tire I've used by far.
Perfect volume (fat and tall). Light. I am #215 with gear and a ride #44 bike. I ride in rough rocky mountainous terrain. so the tires really take a beating. I don't do a lot of big air, so can't speak to that. In over 5 years I've never tore a side wall or had any mfg defects common with other brands. So Schwalbe is expensive, but they have great quality control. Works well with tubeless Stans and med. heavy tubes slimed.
If you find something better, Please let me know (PM me). But until then this is the best tire I know in this category . I replace the rear every other month (ouch $), but ride many miles in that time. (bikebling.com use "hookup" for coupon and get 10% off entire order).
Similar Products Used: tioga dh 2.3, maxxis, irc and many others.
Bike Setup: delirium t, boxxer - #44 xc ride.
a Weekend Warrior
from Austria / Mexico
Date Reviewed: May 20, 2011
Strengths: They roll good, dont feel as heavy as they are supposed to be, havent washed out since i got them in any weather, they feel sure planted and very confident
Weaknesses: as all schwalbes expensive..
My bike came with Nevegals installed and they felt good riding down, but every single time I had 2 to 3 pinches on my tubes, and they were tooo draggy riding up. Then I tried the Racing Ralph and nobby nic comobo, great light fast roling, until the rain caught me riding and oh boy were they slippery. Then I tried the Fat Albert supposed to be much better, but they werent apart from the poor grip when wet of the RR and NN, the FA never felt confident. Changed to a Minion and well the Miniond have to be in the top5 list of anyone, they are great, but heavy. So I decided to give the Big betty 2.4 a go. They feel lighter than the Minion 2.5 and are much bigger, they roll as well as the minion and feel great, the grip is good, they have never slipped on me yet at the beginning the pressure was makind them lose the line. But once you find the right spot for your weight they feel simply like a fast rolling velcro.
Great tire, definitely so far my best fron tire. the minion following closely.
Similar Products Used: Schwalbe Nobby Nic, Racing Ralph, Fat albert; Maxxi Minion DHF; Kenda nevegals sitck-e
Bike Setup: 2008 Giant Reign 0 stock except the tires
a Cross Country Rider
Date Reviewed: March 5, 2010
Strengths: Light for big tire, rolls well, true to advertised size, strong sidewall
I mounted the non-UST version up in the fall as a tubeless tire. They sealed up perfectly, haven't needed air since they were sealed. My winter riding location has a lot of sharp lava rocks and the sidewalls have really been taken a beating and no leaks or flats so far. The same rock shredded the Bonti XDX's that came on my Fisher Roscoe in a matter of days and those were claimed to be tubless tires. Great grip in the loose stuff. They really grip in the corners. Definitely don't "spit you sideways" when you land. Unless, of course, you land sideways. Most confidence inspiring front tire I have ever run. Blows the doors of the Conti mountain king in grip and durability. Rolls and grips better than the Nevi. Rampage is up there but punctures much easier than the BB and is a pain in the ass to seal up tubeless.
Similar Products Used: Owned Conti Mnt. King, Pana Rampage, Nevegal, Bont XDX. Maxxis Ignitor. Demoed many more
Bike Setup: Turner 5 spot DW Big Betty Triple compound, Nobby Nic triple on back
a Cross Country Rider
from Hacienda Heights Ca
Date Reviewed: January 6, 2010
Strengths: Great grip for cornering
Absorbes trail bumpies
Can be used with lower pressures
Rolls a little slow
This is a great tire that inspires confidence when trails get technical and tuff. Wide footprint gives ther rider more control especially usefull when turning cornering. Best front tire I have used ever. I hardly ever get flats that is probably due to the heavy side walls.
I was recommended this tire and I can now see the reason people like it so much.
It is heavy and this tire with a Shwalbe Fat Albert in the rear make my bike heavier than desired for enduro/xc trail ridin.
Similar Products Used: Shwalbe Fat Albert
Maxis High Roller
Bike Setup: 09 Turner 5 Spot DW Link
a Cross Country Rider
from Boulder, Colorado, USA
Date Reviewed: October 20, 2008
Strengths: This is the Big Betty 2.4, Triple Compound, UST
High grip, large volume, size actually meets specification, lighter than they claim (~900g instead of 980g)
Weaknesses: Too early to tell. Judging from triple compound Nobby Nics tire may not last all that long. Tire could be cheaper but this is mostly the low $ versus €.
The traction is phenomenal even on snow. You can run these tires at low pressure.
I ran Schwalbe Nobby Nics 2.25 UST for quite some time. Great tires but just a bit too small for really rough riding. Wanted to replace the Nobby Nics with "bigger" Continental Mountain King 2.4 UST. Unfortunately, they turned out to be no bigger at all. Also the Conti compound, while lasting a bit longer than the Nobby Nics, did not track well. And, on top of that, I got ALL of my Conti USTs to pinch flat. In contrast, I never pinched a Nobby Nic UST.
Now I replaced my Conti 2.4 Mountain Kings UST with the Big Betty USTs. Size: no comparison. The Mountain Kings look like puny road tires next to the supposedly same sized Big Bettys. Seriously, the Mountain Kings 2.4 have the same volume as my 2.25 Nobby Nics and they were smaller than 2.25 as well. The BBs really are 2.4" wide and also quite high. If you measure with the side knobs the BB is 2.5"
In the typical Schwalbe way the tires mounted without any challenge or tools (do use the soap) on Mavic UST rims. Floor pump.. no problem. If you want to ride tubeless I recommend the UST tires, UST rims and Stans combination.
Bottom line so far after trying all these other tires: wow!
Similar Products Used: Continental Mountain King 2.4 UST, Schwalbe Nobby Nic 2.25 UST, Schwalbe Fat Albert (regular and FRO), Continental Vertical Pro, Intense CC 2.3, Panaracer...
Bike Setup: 6.3" + 6" travel
a Weekend Warrior
Date Reviewed: July 19, 2008
Strengths: good for intended use ;.)
Cheap (in Germany).
I have the FR version (folding bed) with Gooeygluey in front and ORC in the back.
The ORC is AFAIK not produced anymore, which is good, because this compound is really dangerous when wet. You will slip out on a raindrop.
The Gooeygluey compound is good, when it is wet and not too cold. Funny thing, the ORC has better grip on freezing ground. The ORC doesnt wear off, but the Gooeygluey wears off just rolling around wtihout braking. Hmmm....
The profile of the tire first gave me a strange feeling, the tire will follow lines that you didnt see before.
Considering that, this tire is good on very rough downhills, that are wet or on soft ground.
On uphills the tire rolls very good, even compared to CC tire like the Fat Albert or Diesel.
I wouldnt recommend this tire on any kind of hardpack or dry ground.
Wet and muddy bikeparks are what this tire is designed for.
Maybe a Muddy Mary in front and Bigbetty in the back would be better, but there are so many better tires.
from Wollongong, NSW, Australia
Date Reviewed: June 11, 2008
Strengths: Cool name
Weaknesses: Doesn't do anything special except look pretty mean.
Certainly can't compare to the Maxxis FR tyres.
As with all Schwalbe tyres, these are much ado about nothing. They are great for timid riders, but if you rid as hard as you can they will let you down. They don't rail and don't hold straight lines, nor do they brake well. Sketchy on jumps and drops- they spit you sideways- danger, danger, danger.
These tyres are fine if you don't push them, however the gooey gluey compound is poor quality compared to the softer Maxxis tyres, with more rolling resistance! Hmmmmmm....
a Cross Country Rider
Date Reviewed: February 23, 2008
Strengths: About the hardcore 2,4 version with (big) tubes; really endless grip, rolls suprisingly well
I 'm rather heavy, so both rolling resistance AND grip are quite an issue for me. One trick is, of course, to get fat tyres, and UST is a great upgrade, indeed. These BB have the best grip ever. Not even the Fat Albert Front Only (=soft rubber compound, used them both front and rear for some time) compare. There are some parts of my favorite trail which were always skechty going. With these BB on, I just fly though them. I don't even think about grip. It's just there. Amazing. Rolling resistance is higher than the best, of course. But these roll quite well on hardpack and taramac as well. No bad vibration, no undue noise. None of this brake parachute feel of some other big tyres. In summary, these BB are perfect freeride tyres, obviously. I use them on my hardtail for my usual, much more civilized outings. And with tremendous fun, to be sure. I would not use these babies in situations where the stress is on time or endurance (i.e. races or marathons). There a Racing Ralph UST would be the tyre of choice.
Similar Products Used: Lately: Schwalbe: Nobby Nic, Racing Ralph UST, Fat Alberts normal and front only. Michelin: XCR Mud UST - Else: some Ritchey, WTB Mutanoraptors; ICR Bears.
Bike Setup: Hot Chili Zymotic Harttail, Marzocchi Dirt Jumper III, Shimano XT, Formula Oro Disk front
a Weekend Warrior
from San Gabriels
Date Reviewed: January 24, 2008
Strengths: This review is for the Triple compound Evolution cased 2.4" Big Betty. Large lugs on the center of the tread in hard compound with added traction sipes molded into the knobs. Softer compound on the side knobbys for traction, like when needed to climb out of steep rutted trails. Absolutely stunning traction of loose over hard pack, decomposed granite or loose dolomite as found in Southern California clear up to Downieville. Good traction in stream crossings on polished rocks and while wet trying to climb out of creek beds. Stopping power while maintaining control and traction is phenomenal. It just does so many types of trails, so many riding conditions so good when run as a front tire. Pretty good in the rolling resistance for a tire that weighs 900 grams.
Weaknesses: Price... $71 for a bicycle tire. Thumbs down.
If you have money to burn, or have a bling thing for front tires, buy it. If you are on a budget, there's tires out there for 1/2 the price with 90 to 95% of the performance this one offers. New technology and R &D at a bleeding edge price.
Similar Products Used: Nevegals, Michelin All Mountain, Maxxis
Bike Setup: Bionicon Edison with integrated X2 Fusion and Double Agent 150mm forks, Formula K-18, sintered metal pads,Gravity Dropper w WTB LazerV Team, SRAM X7, SRAM 971 chain, 980 cassette, DT Swiss Cerit, Alex DP20 rims on Alex 2.0 1.8 2.0 spokes.
Date Reviewed: December 2, 2007
Strengths: LARGE VOLUME(LARGE THAN HIGHROLLER 2.5), GREAT GRIP, GREAT ROLLING, LOW WEIGHT, HEAWY DUTY FEATURES(THICK SIDEWALLS, SNAKESKIN)
Weaknesses: NOT GOOD ON DEEP MODE BUT I DONT USE IT FOR THAT
this is the best tyre i have ridden, great for uphill, great for downhill,can take beating for agressive riding -(i have 100+ kg and no problem) the best ALLMOUNTAIN TYRE
a Weekend Warrior
from Sofia, Bulgaria
Date Reviewed: September 1, 2007
Strengths: ultralight (890gr), perfect grip, run em at 1.8atm with no problems, other tires wears in scratches, dents and even holes in walls, but these dont !!
Weaknesses: none at all
1 year ORC as rear, 1 year GG as front then went as rear, now for ~6 months triple compound as front. GG wears fast as rear ! but it's normal for soft compound. Here is snow 4 months, wet 2 months in fall and 2 in spring, and 4 months total dryness, from -15'C to +40'C, those babes fly over all kind of obstructions, except of the good old stripped wet pin wood (of course), but there even michelin slips ^_^
Similar Products Used: Kendas, WTBs, Panaracers, Tiogas
Bike Setup: 6x6
Date Reviewed: March 29, 2007
Strengths: Fast for a FR tyre, grips on corners, if using correctly good for DH.
Weaknesses: Can puncture if you run them to low
Great tyre, can be ridden all day or taken to the local DH track (Guey up front, triple on the back). Works better on 823's than wider rims, no noticable roll over with tyre. Fast through the corners grips well on rock, hardpack and roots, good for FR mud trails, yet to try on steep DH muddy trail where only mud tyres are any use. Have ridden and compared to Minion DHF 2.5ST front, High Roller 2.35ST Rear and the Big Betty seems faster down a hill. May even do some of the easier DH races on this tyre as it is fast in and out of the corners.
Bike Setup: SC VpFree, Totem Coil, XTR, Thomson, CK, Hadley/823.
from Gothenburg, Sweden
Date Reviewed: January 21, 2007
Strengths: Grip, price
Weaknesses: Sidewalls might present a problem as they seem thin
The Big Betty 2.4 (ORC) tires are probably the best all mountain tires today! Have used them in all kinds of weather conditions and they never give up the excellent grip. The ORC compound is the harder one which gives more miles/km compared with the soft version that is also available. The tires are not only wide but also relatively high. Make sure to check your tire clearance on your frame before buying!
Only one possible negative thing, the sidewalls seem to be rather thin and might cause problems if you ride on trails with lots of sharp rocks. I have not had any issues with these tires so far during 1+ year of usage.