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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Basic question:

Which brand & model of tire(s) should my daughter ride, and what pressures should she run?

Background:

My 5-foot-6-inch, sub-110pound 15-year-old sophomore daughter is set to start her second year of competition in the NorCal High School Mountain Bike Racing League. She rides a pretty-much-stock 2009 Specialized Myka Elite.

Her best skill is climbing.

We're about set to go with Stan's NoTubes tubeless system. The bike's stock Fast Trak LK tires weigh in at 720grams, so we'd also like to go for lighter tires at the same time.

How about Stan's The Crow 2.0 for the rear? Given her weight of 110lbs and a current bike weight just a hair under 29lbs, would we run it at like a super-low pressure? 16psi?!?

And what about the front? To my (roadie) eyes, her current tires look like they have lots of knobs, but the knobs don't look terribly aggressive.

Would one of the lighter Schwalbe tires be a better choice for the front? Or maybe a Stan's The Raven 2.0 would give a bit more grip up front?

I've read that these lightweight tires tend to not be the most durable, but I have a suspicion that her light weight will mean that they'll last loads longer than than they would on some 180-pound dude's bike. ;)

(Dad here's a roadie, so I don't really know the ins & outs of soil types. For folks who know northern California, races are typically at Fort Ord, Folsom, and Boggs Mountain.)

Any other general advice?

Thanks!! :D

-Greg
 

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I used the Raven 2.2" 29er tires all last summer and found them to have surprising traction in hardpack conditions. They also showed remarkable durability. It really depends on the riding conditions, hardpack would be fine but loose and/or sharp rocks would probably not be ideal. At 225lbs I ran them tubeless at 27psi with zero issues, so your daughter could easily run them at the minimal 20psi...probably even with tubes.
 

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Greg,

Where will she be riding mostly? If it's the Sacramento area like Granite Bay, South Lake Natoma - even Auburn I like the Kenda Small Block 8's in dry - light and good for hard pack. In Winter I go for the WTB Exiwolf's - which are my all around favorite tire. They seem to do most everything pretty well.

I run Stan's wheels and a couple Stan's conversions. I'm 145# and usually run 22/24psi Ft/Rr so that can help you guage her tire pressure. Basically I run mine as low as I can until I start getting noticable side wall flex.

Yes, tubless enabling lower air pressures is the BEST SUSPENSION UPGRADE you can do!

If you care to, ring me up through either of my websites :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Practices are mostly on not-particularly-technical fire roads in the East SF Bay. Races will likely be at Fort Ord (East Garrison and Pilarcitos Canyon), Granite Bay in Folsom, and Boggs Mountain.

Looks like the Exiwolfs weigh almost the same as the current bike's stock tires. I'm leery of running any Kendas with Stan's NoTubes, given that loads of folks report that the sealant dissolves the rubber of the tire.
 

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I wasn't too happy with the Raven, went back to Schwalbe RoRo-RaRa. Gives me simply more control, in particular in corners. In general, I wasn't to happy with the grip. I dare to say that rolling resistance between standard race tires and those semi-slicks may not be that much different off-road anyway. At least that what some German mag once showed in a test.

I don't know how much experience your daughter has, but for riding a semi-slick you really have to be a proficient rider, otherwise it can be dangerous.
 

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gregm2 said:
Looks like the Exiwolfs weigh almost the same as the current bike's stock tires. I'm leery of running any Kendas with Stan's NoTubes, given that loads of folks report that the sealant dissolves the rubber of the tire.
Hummm interesting, I've run small block eights for almost two years with no problems, I've had them off, changed them, inspected them, did not see anything unusual, no deterioration or abnormallities of any kind where did you hear/read that, I'd like to learn more?

I've actually been on the WTB Nano Raptor up until winter slop set in and on hard/med pack they are great and about 100 grams less than the Exiwolf... and your daughter could probably go a 1.95 tubless easily... I've got a set of 1.95 WTB Wolverines I'm going to try next... about 495gm/tire

I've been to Fort Ord, isn't that kinda sandy, probably medium pack this time of year?

Cheers,

CJS
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
CactusJackSlade said:
Hummm interesting, I've run small block eights for almost two years with no problems, I've had them off, changed them, inspected them, did not see anything unusual, no deterioration or abnormallities of any kind where did you hear/read that, I'd like to learn more?
Hi CJS,

Thanks for your comments.

Here are some examples of discussions I've seen regarding Stan's and Kenda:

http://forums.mtbr.com/showthread.php?t=281255
http://www.singletrackworld.com/forum/topic/kenda-ust-tyres-and-stans-no-tubes-sealant
http://forums.mtbr.com/showthread.php?t=257300

-Greg
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
CactusJackSlade said:
I've been to Fort Ord, isn't that kinda sandy, probably medium pack this time of year?
Oh -- well, yeah, sandy a bit, but I don't know how to ID MTB trail surface types really. Sorry!

-Greg
 
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