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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I recently purchased a gf marlin. The stock tires are not what I need to ride the local trails. They tend to slip and not grip very well. I wanted to purchase some velociraptors but I can only find them in size 2.1

My tire sizes are 26x2.20/2.25. The front is 2.25 and the rear is 2.20 I believe. Will the 2.1 sized velociraptors work on my bike?

I seem to be having a hard time finding the right sized tires online for my bike.

Also, as far as tubes are concerned. As long as I get a tube that falls within the range spread for my wheel size they would work? This is confusing to me.

Thanks for any suggestions.
 

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Okay here you go....

as for the tire size yes the 2.1' will work just fine. You don't have to exactly match the tire size that came on your bike. The key is not to go to big. If you do they won't fit in between the stays in the rear. Also forks have limitations as well. Just because you can fit a tire between the fork legs doesn't mean it fits. Wider tires are usually taller as well, so there is the possibility that if the tire is too tall it will make contact with the crown of the fork should the fork be fully compressed while riding. This isn't a good thing and will result in a ugly crash. The Rock Shox Dart fork that your Marlin came with is okay with up to a 2.3" tire, so stay at or below 2.3" wide and you should be good for the front. But a 2.3 may not work for the rear as the tire has to clear the chain stays without rubbing. I would say stick to a 2.2" tire or smaller and you'd have no problems at all.

Now as for the Velociraptor, there are MUCH better peforming tires out there. Yes the heavily lugged rear tire gives you tons of traction, but they also are heavy and roll quite slow. The front is nothing to write home about, they tend to break loose or "wash out" easily when cornering in loose conditions and are rather unpredictable when leaned in a hard turn even on hard packed surfaces. And they flat out suck in mud of just about any kind.

Since you don't really say what conditions you are riding in, i.e. wet, hardpack, loose over hard, sand, gravel, rocks, roots, loam, etc. it's tough to recommend a tire. But there are tires out there that are pretty good "all around tires". They'll perform well in most conditions but aren't really masters of any. A few of my favorite all around tires are the Maxxis Advantage Exception in 2.1, Kenda Nevegal DTC in 2.1, Panaracer Fire XC Pro in 2.1 (kevlar bead version not the wire bead, the wires suck), and Continental Mountain King Protections in 2.2. All of these tires are designed to work as both a front and rear tire and provide good traction for climbing, braking and cornering, roll realatively fast and are reasonably light. They aren't available as cheaply as the V raptors, but out peform them in just about any conditions. And all will do their job well as long as you do yours. As a bonus all of the above, except for the Panaracers, perform fairly well in mud unless it's sticky clay or gumbo mud that is common in some places.

I agree that the Jones XR's that came stock on your bike are not the best when it comes to traction. But there are much better options out there than the Velociraptors. I am not a big fan of WTB tires, but even most of their other offerings are better performers than the Raptors.

And finally, yes as long as your tire width is included in the size range listed for the tubes you'll be fine. You can even go over a bit with the tire size. A tube rated for a 2.35 tire will easily expand enough to be usable in a 2.5" tire with no problems. Just don't try to use a tube with a minimum tire size of say 1.95 in a 1.75 tire, it don't work very well. :D

Good Dirt
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
thanks!

thank you for the excellent advice. i ride mostly rooty singletrack on a hard packed trail. occassionally it will be a little tacky but i don't ride mud or wet trails. i slip alot now over roots with the jones tires. also, the back wants to wash out while climbing. i'll research the tires you suggested. the sizes were what was bugging me the worst.
 

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Also, what tire pressure are you running? Running a lower pressure mail help a bit until you get replacements. Don't go too low or you'll pinch flat.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
pressure

i've been running around 28 to 30 psi in the back just to get adequate traction. up front i've kept it around 37 to 39 because i'm worried about getting a pinch flat. i did have it at 45 in the front but it was like riding on a slick. i guess they put these on new bikes because they must guess a good many people do alot of riding on pavement instead of trails.
 

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Ahhh..okay...

frank ingram said:
thank you for the excellent advice. i ride mostly rooty singletrack on a hard packed trail. occassionally it will be a little tacky but i don't ride mud or wet trails. i slip alot now over roots with the jones tires. also, the back wants to wash out while climbing. i'll research the tires you suggested. the sizes were what was bugging me the worst.
For the roots a good high volume tire will help allot. The higher the volume the lower you can run the pressure without pinch flats, within limits of course. Of the tires I mentioned the two best are going to be the Kenda Nevegal DTC in 2.1, and the Maxxix Advantage, but instead of the 2.1 version go with the 2.2. The ability to run lower pressures allows the tire to conform to the root or rock or whatever and provide better traction as the tire flows over the obstical rather than having to bump up and over it. As for climbing do keep in mind that your technique has allot to do with it. If you stand and mash there are very few tires that out there that won't slip out. A seated climb is usually the most efficient. Also gear selection plays a big part as well. A gear that will let you tick the pedals over at around 60 to 80 rmp on a climb is ideal. The two tires above should peform well for I would think. There are others as well.

Good Dirt
 

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frdfandc said:
Continental Mountain King Protections - trying out tomorrow on my Full sus.

Panaracer Fire XC Pro - Have these on my Hardtail - Love them.
I'll be curious on how you find the Contis... I was thinking of trying them out... at this point, I'm thinking pretty much anything will be better than my Jones XR's....

cheers
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
thanks again

thanks again for the excellent advice.

i ended up ordering two of the 127 tpi panaracer fire xc pros from jensonusa. from all the reviews i read, they seemed best suited to my needs around here. i've found another trail that is not as rooty as the one i'd been riding. i'll end up spending more time riding it than the one closer to my house because ultra rooty sections of trail and my hardtail aren't mixing very well for me atm.

i'll drop back by and update my experience with them in a few weeks. i've got a good feeling that anything would be an upgrade over my current tire (bontrager jones) I'll keep them around for commuting if I decide to do that in the future.

incidentally, i had my first crash on my new bike on sunday. i took a curve too fast on the trail, front tire slid out, and my shoulder clipped a tree. i can't wait to get the new tires on the bike and hit that curve again and see what happens.
 

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Well - having gone from the Jones XR 2.25/2.20 (like the OP) on my HiFi Deluxe to WTB VelociRaptors - I can confirm exactly what Squash described. Although I did find them excellent in mud (and I'm talking the greasy slipper mud from clay based soil). But in any sort of dry or hardpack conditions, the front, as described, is very squirrelly and not very confidence inspiring. Rear has tons of climbing grip in any condition. But the fact they are only good in muddy conditions per my trials, I needed something better all around. The trails here in MI have a bit of everything so a specialised tire isn't practical (unless you like swapping tires every ride).

Went to a local shop wanting to check out some Maxxis High Rollers - they were out. But they had plenty of Kenda Nevegal 2.1 DTC's. So I walked out with a pair. Will be trying them in the next few days. I'm stoked to try these. Hopefully my last set for a while 'til they wear out.

My one question is (maybe Squash can help) is they are labeled as rated for 40-65psi. What's the risk of pinch flatting if I run them at 35psi?

And I'm planning to run the rear backwards for better climbing traction. Any issues in doing that? Will rear braking suffer?



cheers
 

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"My one question is (maybe Squash can help) is they are labeled as rated for 40-65psi. What's the risk of pinch flatting if I run them at 35psi?"

Not a problem. I weigh in t about 230lbs geared and can easily run them at 35psi with no problem. I've run em as low as 30 (on smoother trails) with out problems as well. They are a nice high volume tire so lower pressures shouldn't give your any grief. You'll have to exeriment if you want to go lower though.

"And I'm planning to run the rear backwards for better climbing traction. Any issues in doing that? Will rear braking suffer?"

Been there done that, and put em back they way they are supposed to go. Yes you're braking traction will suffer, and the increase in forward traction really isn't enough to justify running them reversed IMHO.

Good Dirt
 

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Similar situation

Been running 2.1 Nevegals w/ tubes on my hard tail for the last year, or so. Upstate SC riding conditions . . . really dry right now - sandy areas over rock & hardpack, lots of roots & rocks & gravel. Weight about 210.

Only flats were due to thorn pricks until last week, had the first pinch flat on the rear tire. Hit a big rock too fast and didn't get my weight off the back soon enough. Had been keeping the front at about 30psi, rear about 35. Rear got down to about 28psi recently and could really feel it squirming around. (Different ride, however, might have had a slow leak and didn't notice low pressure at that point of the ride)

Biggest complaint about the Nevegal is it wears out too fast on the rear. (We have a big - 1/2 mile road climb/decent and another 1 mile, or so of road on the ususal ride)

Been thinking about going with the Panaracer Fire XC or Cinder w/ kevlar bead on the rear. Hoping it will last a little longer than the Nevegal.

Questions now are TPI? 60 or 120? What's the big deal with this?

And . . . going tubeless?

Steve
 

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MI_canuck said:
Well - having gone from the Jones XR 2.25/2.20 (like the OP) on my HiFi Deluxe to WTB VelociRaptors - I can confirm exactly what Squash described. Although I did find them excellent in mud (and I'm talking the greasy slipper mud from clay based soil). But in any sort of dry or hardpack conditions, the front, as described, is very squirrelly and not very confidence inspiring. Rear has tons of climbing grip in any condition. But the fact they are only good in muddy conditions per my trials, I needed something better all around. The trails here in MI have a bit of everything so a specialised tire isn't practical (unless you like swapping tires every ride).

Went to a local shop wanting to check out some Maxxis High Rollers - they were out. But they had plenty of Kenda Nevegal 2.1 DTC's. So I walked out with a pair. Will be trying them in the next few days. I'm stoked to try these. Hopefully my last set for a while 'til they wear out.

My one question is (maybe Squash can help) is they are labeled as rated for 40-65psi. What's the risk of pinch flatting if I run them at 35psi?

And I'm planning to run the rear backwards for better climbing traction. Any issues in doing that? Will rear braking suffer?

cheers
let me know what you think of the nevegals on your Hifi. I run the nevegal dtc 2.1 in front and the small block 8 2.1 in back. I love the Nevegal, now you can find them on the net for $29. It's a little slow, but the traction has saved my ass too many times to count. Anyways, how is the clearance running the neve in back vs the chain stays on Hifi. I want to run the 2.1 nevegal in rear too, but I was worried of the clearance since the SB8 barely clears......
 
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