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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Last december i bought a bike 27.5x3.0 on 40 mm and i like it a lot. We had our fat season that ended about april 15. With wet trails my new bike was fun. Yesterday i went to a demo and rode 2 hrs on 27.5x2.6, wow! It was just very playfull, it felt lighter.
Is it a combination of 29 mm rims and smaller tires?
I really do not appreciate pedal strikes so i am not really thinking of going to smaller ones on this one.
For my next bike, would i feel all that magic with 2.8 or is 2.6 that special? I am more a guy who would buy with 2.6 and enough room to go up, the low BB is not my cup of tea.
 

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I ride a Chameleon (1.5 yrs) with 27.5 plus tires and had a Stumpy 6Fatty (3 yrs) with the same size tires. The difference between 3.0 and 2.8 was enough for me to run nothing but 2.8's. Just felt like the sidewalls were firmer but still offered the plus size traction. I run two sets of wheels on my Chameleon both i38 rims, one set has Schwalbe HD-r and MM-f for soft or muddy conditions and Maxxis Rekon-r and DHF-f for drier faster conditions.

Now my Pivot 5.5 has the 2.6 WT tires and they are just a whole different animal. Lighter, firmer, faster. Once again two sets of wheels i35 and i30. 2.6 is just a larger trail tire not a plus tire. Night and day difference between those and a 2.8+.

So i guess to answer your ?, A bike with a higher BB and 2.6 tires will be a lot more fun to whip around.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I ride a Chameleon (1.5 yrs) with 27.5 plus tires and had a Stumpy 6Fatty (3 yrs) with the same size tires. The difference between 3.0 and 2.8 was enough for me to run nothing but 2.8's. Just felt like the sidewalls were firmer but still offered the plus size traction. I run two sets of wheels on my Chameleon both i38 rims, one set has Schwalbe HD-r and MM-f for soft or muddy conditions and Maxxis Rekon-r and DHF-f for drier faster conditions.

Now my Pivot 5.5 has the 2.6 WT tires and they are just a whole different animal. Lighter, firmer, faster. Once again two sets of wheels i35 and i30. 2.6 is just a larger trail tire not a plus tire. Night and day difference between those and a 2.8+.

So i guess to answer your ?, A bike with a higher BB and 2.6 tires will be a lot more fun to whip around.
Yeah, thinking about it, i was doing gear ratios, and looking at a built of 11 S instead of the 12 S expensive one i demoed. I guess having a 2.6 on 29 i and a 3.0 on 40 is an easy decision. Enough difference to choose depending on the day. For a small guy like me i felt like Hulk, just like you said, a fun bike to whip around.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
No my 2017 is not available anymore. I know .2 in is small but with the energy while moving? I was feeling a Huge difference between my 3.0 on 40 mm vs the ones i demoed, 2.6 on 29 mm. I guess i need to do a few more demos. One is coming on the 15th.
 

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In my experience it depends if your riding a hardtail or a full suspension. I have 2.6 on my full suspension, and I've had 3.0 and 2.8 on my hardtail. The main difference I felt was weight and rolling resistance. I live in Florida so bigger tires is a must. For me 2.8 on my hardtail was perfect not too big and not too small and the weight was just right. Now on my full suspension 2.6 is the perfect weight and size. I see guys on fat bikes all year round so I guess it's all personal preference and the terrain you ride.

Sent from my SM-G973U using Tapatalk
 

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All personal preference. I went from 29x2.3 to 29x2.6 to 27.5x2.8 to 27.5 to 3.0, went back to 2.8, then ultimately back to 3.0. The manufacturer of the tires I use the 2.8 measures 2.64" and the 3.0 actually measures around 2.93". I realized I like a hard carcass because I'm a Clydesdale and that I HATE 29". Ultimately, depending on the manufacturer the main differences are the weight, playfulness, and grip.

You can feel the weight difference right away but that goes away for me after literally one ride. It only affects initial acceleration and heavy climbing. 3.0 is more forgiving and fun for me. With the same input the smaller tire would be easier to go fast. I am actually faster wit the larger tire because I'm more confident with them.

If you were worried about going smaller tire you could snag yourself a 165mm crank vs a 175mm. It raises your pedals 10mm at the bottom of the stroke. That's what I did.
 

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I suspect what you were feeling was a difference in tire pressure. Add 5 psi of air to your plus tires and they will feel "firm" and "faster" even though you'll probably add rolling resistance and actually be going slower. The difference between a 2.6 and 2.8 is not huge. If the tires were the same tread pattern and proportionately inflated, I'm not sure I could tell the difference in a blind test (if that were possible).
 

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Depending on the specific tires there may not be as much weight difference as you might think. I was surprised.

For my baseline, my front tire is a Terrene Chunk in 3.0

  • 27.5x3.0 Terrene Chunk - 940 gr
  • 27.5x2.6 Terrene Chunk - 918gr
  • 27.5x2.8 Maxxis DHF - 980gr
  • 27.5x2.6 Maxxis DHF-WT - 925gr (exo) - 1010gr (exo+)

These are manufacturer's claimed weights and all are 120tpi just to keep it even.

As an earlier poster mentioned, pressure may play a big role in the narrower tires feeling lighter but couldn't it also the smaller contact patch?
 

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With some objectivity, a bloke could test tires ranging from 2.6-3.0 in the same manufacturer>model to have at least some idea of difference.
Schwalbe offers Nobby Nic in 27.5 x 2.6, 2.8 and 3.0, for example. Anything that compares different sizes and models leaves out too many variables for a valid comparison of 2.6 vs. 2.8 vs. 3.0.

Carry on...
 

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.2" *width* is one thing. the volume change is another. i think there is a difference. (if 2.8 and 3 are the actual measurements) 3.0 is the more float, softer option. most 'plus' 2.8 errs towards a more normal tyre feeling. if im moving slow in rough terrain or boggy land i like 3.0 front and rear. if im riding rough terrain fast, 2.8 is better, at least on the rear. less fold over and more direct feeling. its marginal, but to me definitely there...
 

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3.0 always felt like a small fat bike tire and 2.8s feel like a large volume reg mtb tire, .2 makes a big differance in this size
^ 100% this.

My Fuse can with 3.0's, and after a couple hundred miles I decided to try out 2.8's during the Specialized tire sale. I would have a hard time going back to 3.0 for everyday riding, it really feels like a small fat bike tire (I used to ride a Pugsley), and the smaller tire really made the bike come alive.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
^ 100% this.

My Fuse can with 3.0's, and after a couple hundred miles I decided to try out 2.8's during the Specialized tire sale. I would have a hard time going back to 3.0 for everyday riding, it really feels like a small fat bike tire (I used to ride a Pugsley), and the smaller tire really made the bike come alive.
A guy in my area will probably trade with me so i might soon have 30mm from a 6 fattie and use 2.8. Also i will get shorter crank arms.
 
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