Schwalbe Tough Tom Tire


The old dream pairing reunited. Rapid Rob uses the former profile of Racing Ralph and for many years it has proved an attractive entry-level model. Tough Tom is a new addition, adopting the previous Nobby Nic profile. It’s the right choice for rougher trails or for the front wheel.


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[Aug 25, 2017]
Weekend Warrior


Rolls well


unpredictable as a front tire
washes out easily under hard cornering
poor traction on steep/technical climbs

The Tough Toms came factory spec'd on the new mountain bike I've owned for 2 months. A little research told me they were the old Nobby Nic profile, which I knew had a good following so I let the tires be for the first few rides. I am the type of rider that appreciates grip and predictability over a fast rolling or light tire. I've been an avid rider for 3 years and just started racing XC mid-season.

I immediately realized I could not trust this tire in the front. It could not handle loose over hard which is common in my area, and heavy cornering on hardpack was dangerously unpredictable. I decided to axe this from the front after my second ride. I decided to put a Hans Dampf in front and kept the Tough Tom on the rear. I've been satisfied with this combo overall and kept the extra Tough Tom as a replacement.

It performs bang-up average on the rear for: hardpack, loose over hard, clay, sandy conditions. I tend to stay off the trails when muddy so no review there. When it comes to rocks and technical climbs, forget about it. Tire is worthless on boulders, rock gardens, and short, steep climbs. Pretty much anything requiring lots of torque, it just spins and spins and never hooks up. The compound is really soft and knobs get chewed up and cut easily on rocks. 2+ months of use and maybe 60 miles of trail, it looks like a year old tire.

I expect to burn through both Tough Tom tires within the year and move on to a different tire. For a stock tire, they will get you started, but I'd never buy these in a store.

Similar Products Used:

Schwalbe Hans Dampf 27.5 x 2.35 Performance
Schwalbe Hans Dampf 26 x 2.35 Pacestar, Snakeskin

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