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I'm in the market for some new rims and I'm looking at either the ibis 738, ARC 30 or ARC 35. I'm debating what width to get. Right now I have the ARC 27 with maxis DHF 2.5WT up front and DHR 2.4WT in rear. I typically run HRII in the rear but gave the DHR a shot. What width would everyone go with? I don't plan on going bigger than 2.5 in either front or rear. I've seen the 2.5 on 35s and I like the looks of it but have not had a chance to ride them. Two local shops are suggesting 35 may be too wide but I know that maxxis designed their WT around the 35 width. I ride a bronson V2 and typically ride in the desert if that makes a difference. Any opinions are appreciated. Thanks!
 

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Wanna ride bikes?
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30 or 35 will be just fine. The wider rim will give you a little more volume and better sidewall support. If your 200+ lbs the wider rims may have more benefit.
 

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I had 35 internal for a couple years and just scaled back to 31 internal when i had some carbon wheels built up. I am 225+ and haven’t noticed and negatives in terms of side wall support with the ever so slightly narrower rims. But i do like the slightly more rounded profile of the 2.5 and 2.6” high volume tires. I think 30-31 is better for these tires that 35.
 

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On my 29er, I greatly preferred 30mm ID vs 35mm ID in a CF wheel. Side lean traction was notably better (a result of a more natural tire shape), rolling resistance was less with the same tires (less tread touching when straight up and down) and compliance was better (probably more to do with the rim brand).

However, on a 27.5" bike my theory is that to equal the traction of 2.3 - 2.4 29" tires (which I prefer over anything wider), you really need 2.5 - 2.6 tires on a 27.5". And therefore 35mm wheels combined with a bit wider tires make more sense on a 27.5".

It's been a few years since I sold my own Bronson but to get proper traction on that bike I wouldn't run anything more narrow than an actual 2.5" and would have went wider if I had the frame clearance to do so. I flat dislike and find very draggy and slow to change direction, anything wider than about 2.5" actual on a 29er.

You can't even compare tires when going from 27.5" to 29" I have found as the diameter makes such a large difference on the width of tire that works on different size bikes.
 

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I'm on i30 with DHF 2.5WT up front and HR2 2.3 in the rear. I really like this combo. I like to ride hard and fast, hit big jumps, etc. I tried to run a DHF 2.3 up front a while back for a more "trail" setup, but I found that I couldn't turn/lean the bike due to the tread up front. It was like I couldn't get it past a certain point. Put that minion in the rear and put another tire up front and that problem was solved...except there was a lot of rolling resistance. Still, I ran it for a while and ran that front minion in the rear until it was warped out of shape and eventually slashed. The take-away though was that I needed the WT tire up front to really maximize on these i30 rims. They aren't super-wide, but IMO they are perfect, wide enough for massive traction and not crazy heavy. I think as you start going bigger, the advantage starts going down quickly. Some people like running 2.6, 2.7, 2.8 tires and beyond, and for these, the wider rims make sense, but those tires and rim combos are also slower for all-out riding, so I really think 30-35 is a sweet spot for running a 2.3-2.5 tire.

I only have about 6-7 rides on the HR in the rear, but I really like it. I like staggering the rear tire and I have always felt it should be slightly smaller. Measuring with my precision calipers, the widest point of the tread on the HR2 is about 2.3 exactly, the casing is about 2.25. The 2.5 WT up front measures 2.4. I find that going past 2.5 up front and about 2.3 in the rear really starts to slow the bike down.

These are 27.5 on my bike.
 

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I have a set of the ARC Offset i35s. Love them, but I run 2.6 Minions. I wanted the flexibility to run anything between a 2.4WT to a 2.8 if I wanted.
I really love the tire profile with this setup.
If you plan to max out at a 2.5, I'd probably go with the i30s. The Maxxis WT tires are optimized for i35 but work well on a i30 also. Other brands in a similar width that aren't "WT" will also be better on the i30.
 

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Before the whole wide rim, 2.4-2.6 tire thing started, I had a 2009 Specialized Stumpjumper FS 29er. It came with some crappy, skinny rims. I built a pair of wheels with 30mm rims and really liked em, so when I found 35mm rims, I decided to try em.
I built up some Velocity Blunts and ran my 2.2 rear and 2.35 front tires. It transformed the bike for ME. I'm big and heavy so I loved it.
 

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On my 29er, I greatly preferred 30mm ID vs 35mm ID in a CF wheel. Side lean traction was notably better (a result of a more natural tire shape), rolling resistance was less with the same tires (less tread touching when straight up and down) and compliance was better (probably more to do with the rim brand).

However, on a 27.5" bike my theory is that to equal the traction of 2.3 - 2.4 29" tires (which I prefer over anything wider), you really need 2.5 - 2.6 tires on a 27.5". And therefore 35mm wheels combined with a bit wider tires make more sense on a 27.5".

It's been a few years since I sold my own Bronson but to get proper traction on that bike I wouldn't run anything more narrow than an actual 2.5" and would have went wider if I had the frame clearance to do so. I flat dislike and find very draggy and slow to change direction, anything wider than about 2.5" actual on a 29er.

You can't even compare tires when going from 27.5" to 29" I have found as the diameter makes such a large difference on the width of tire that works on different size bikes.
Yeah.

While not extensively tested, i35 on a 275 works better for me than the i30. Pretty sure I can feel it with the same tire, a 2.5.

On the 29er an i30 or less, even for a 2.5. I think an i35 on a 29 is getting into the realm of to much wheel. The traction and trail control I get from an i30 with even a 2.4" tire is huge.
 

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Depends on the bike and what size of tire. I'm running 35mm rims on my Ripley and think they should be 30's. Found the 2.5WT tires to be a little large for this bike. Prefer 2.3 on it. Yeah the 2.5WT really bomb dh, but the bike felt sluggish and was harder to pedal up.

That being said..just mounted up maxxis 2.3 and they seem to be sitting properly on the 35mm rim. Thinking they have updated them for wider wheels.
 
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