Strengths: Cornering grip, low straight-line rolling resistance.
The best front tire I've used, and I'm so glad I gave this one a shot. I only have experience with it up front, not in the rear. It would be a slow rear tire IMO, but for the front, it's fantastic. I ride mostly in loose-over-hard, with it sometimes being fine sand over granite to pea-sized rocks over hard/granite/etc. Most of my riding is in Colorado, with a lot of riding in loose-foothill trails. Appearance wise, it's a chunky looking tire, and it's definitely not the lightest. Being an XC rider, I thought it would be a little over-kill by the looks of it. However, with the amount of cornering grip it gives, it's much quicker for me than a tire 300 grams less, especially on a tight and twisty track. Granted, there's much to consider regarding your own cornering ability, technique, confidence, etc. I'm a season rider with fairly good technique, and this tire is just so sticky and predictable that it noticeably increases my speed and ability to lean and take really loose corners at greater speeds. I've used this for 3/4 of last season, and put about 800 miles of dirt on it. It's wearing really well for such a soft tire, and I'll be buying another when it's worn enough. I use the 2.3 x 29 control casing. I run it tubeless @ 20 psi, and I weight around 160. I have this on my epic expert, and I use a racing ralph on the rear. The only minor gripe I have is that it does weep stans out of the sidewalls fairly consistently. This isn't a big deal, but if you rub the tire up against anything, or if you handle your front tire separately a lot, you will get a nice splooge of dirty stans juice on you. I don't have any experience with other tire sealants and this tire.
This is the best 29" front tire I've ridden. You have to be comfortable leaning it over to get to the side knobs otherwise it can feel vague. I used to like a Rampage but once I got confident leaning this over it's a new world. I may be in the minority but after riding both I think it's better than Minion DHF 3C 2.3. The Maxxis is 150g heavier and more durable but I think the Butcher corners better on hard or loose over hard. The Minion may have some advantage in loam but I can't say for sure. The Butcher also a good rear tire but I like the Grid version in the rear, control has been fine for a front tire. I've gotten almost 1000 miles out of it and it could go longer.
Strengths: Great grip. Mounted up easily. A bargain compared to many other tires.
Weaknesses: None yet...
Just recently put this on the front of my Pivot Mach 6 and I have 5-6 rides on them now under many different types of dirt compositions. Very happy with the performance of the tires, running them at about 22 PSI. At $55, they are a great deal and they mounted up on my NOX carbon wheels very easily. I was actually a little concerned because I read where many people said they didn't grip well unless you leaned them way over. That's definitely not my style but they have worked great for me. No complaints.
Strengths: Rolls fairly Fast
Grips fairly well due to having very soft rubber!
Predictable in turns
Price is good relative to similar high end HansDamph
Weaknesses: Not the lightest, but its not the heaviest either
Tire came on my Enduro 29ner S-Works, I run it tubeless and have no issues as a front tire.
Been using now for 7 months, holds up well, rolls smoothly and grip is predictable and good.
Grip & drift of 3/4" characteristics is similar to Kendra Navegal but Butcher is much lighter and rolls faster. Better than Navagal but about $20 more.
Maxis DHF 2.5 (its actually a 2.35) drifts less in hard low turns and absorbs a bit more chatter due to massive amount of rubber, but Butcher rolls much faster and grip/drift is not that far off; so Butcher is better.
HansDamph 2.35 does not rolls as fast, but HansDamph does drift much much less in hard low turns! So in my opinion HansDamph gives a more confidence in hard low turning than the Butcher as a front tire. So in future if i have the funds, i will buy the HansDamph, if i am low on funds, then i will get the Butcher. I think there is only a 12gram wt difference and $40 more for the HandDamph. For me front tire grip is more important than back, i do not want to take a spill and get rashed and hurt. But i do not want a super heavy tire to get that performance that is why i moved a way from the DHF.
Favorite Trail: China Camp - Bay View 10 mile loop twice!
Purchased At: Mikes Bikes
Similar Products Used: Navigal 2.35 - heavy, slow, newer tires have surpassed its performance, weight
Continental Race King 2.2 - i use on back for fast climbing, but it does step out in fast turns
Continental X King 2.4 - makes me climb 1mph slower than the Race King, so do not use anymore
Maxis DHF - nice bump absorption and nice cornering grip, but way way too heavy
Butcher 2.3 - Nice front tire! no complaints, price is good, performance is good, wt is good.
HansDamph 2.35 with Trail grip version - Best grip front tire- almost no drift, but very expensive and
Bike Setup: 2014 Specialized Enduro 29ner S-Works
-Butcher Front / Race King 2.2 Back
-Havoc Carbon 29" bars 20mm rise
Only thing not great on this bike is the Cammand Seatpost!
a All Mountain Rider
Date Reviewed: July 4, 2014
Strengths: Phenomenal Grip
Good Rolling Resistance
Weaknesses: Slightly heavy, though not bad (730 grams)
This is the best front tire I have ever used. The grip is absolutely phenomenal. Whether riding in dry vs wet, sand vs rock, dirt vs roots, this tire can handle it all. I can rail the corners harder than ever before. I have never had more confidence in any other tire. Ever!! For as aggressive as it is, it rolls well for a tire of this design. Specialized used a 50a compound I believe for the entire knobby surface which is a slightly softer compound. I think this aids in the grip but as I use it in the front only, the rolling resistance is good. I think it would be slower if I used it in the rear though. It has been holding up well, tread and sidewall. I absolutely love this tire.
Similar Products Used: Schwalbe nobby nic, Kenda Nevegal, Maxxis high roller
a All Mountain Rider
Date Reviewed: June 18, 2014
Strengths: Grip, tubeless, cornering, price, braking, low rolling resistance
This tire is excellent. I'm running the 26 x 2.3 on the front tubeless. Have had for about 8 months. It does everything well. It's pretty much the all round tire without any compromises. Fine for round town and xc riding, but also excellent for wet muddy conditions. I ride in Taranaki New Zealand and the soil is very clayey and slippery. In dry to wet conditions the tire rails around corners. In very wet slippery conditions the give is gradual, so you don't get caught out. And I only paid NZ$60, which is cheap for a tire this good.
Bike Setup: 2007 Stumpjumper Comp.
Butcher control up front, Kenda excavator up the back.
a All Mountain Rider
Date Reviewed: October 27, 2013
Strengths: Massive grip , consistent over range of conditions, good roller considering the amount of grip it produces, big bag size for a 2.3, easy tubeless setup
Weaknesses: Side walls a little thin and flexy , but at this weight it's not surprising
All mountain or aggro trail riders; this is one of the best out there , grip is on par with a maxxis minion DHF but much lighter, super consistent over range of wet and dry trail conditions and handles ridiculous lean angles, superb quality tire runs true on the rim and super easy tubeless setup using a floor pump only , haven't cut the sidewalls yet despite the fact they are much thinner than a dual ply dh tire , probably because the bag volume gives the tire a lot of float over the tough terrain and helps to resist sidewall damage , had this tire on the go now for about 12 months on a trek remedy , impressive