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Austin, Texas
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have 2.25" Racing Ralph's on the front and rear of my Frankenstein Yeti ASR5 26er. They are getting a bit old, and I think it is time to put some new ones on. I think I would like a little more traction, but I have this 26er as my fast, super quick bike...so it needs to roll extremely well and hopefully be light.

Thoughts on two combos I am thinking of...Rocket Ron in front, Racing Ralph in back....or Maxxis Minion DHF or DHRii in front, Maxxis Minion SS in back. I ride in central Texas, so All Mountain, hardpack, loose over hard, roots, and rocks.

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I would just run RoRo's front and back. If you want to up the traction, a RoRo rear/Nobby Nic front is good. They're fast and grippier than the RaRa's. The DHR/DHFII's are great tires, but not if weight is a major factor. I haven't ridden the Minnion SS, so I can't comment on it.
 

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Buy the maxxis combo, see what you think. It's always good to have a garage full of extra tires. If they roll too slow for you locally, keep them in the garage for when you travel to the mountains.
 

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Austin, Texas
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
That's a good idea...and I just might do that. I have the Maxxis DHF/DHRii combo on my Transition Smuggler X01 29er and I love it, but that's my "everything" bike.

The 26er I want super fast and super quick, hence the Racing Ralphs f & r for years. I decided to go ahead and get a Rocket R f and Racing R r, but man, it is very difficult to find them. I've also thought about some Continental Race Kings/Trail Kings etc..., but I just don't know much about Conti's.

So I may just get a DHRii front, and SS for the rear and see how I like them, and if they seem to slow the bike up too much.

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Your ASR must be a rocket with RR tires! I have a similar short travel snappy bike: blur trc. I prefer it with slower rubber because it's still very responsive and fast even on flatter sections, and traction is on par with my nomad3. That said, I would probably change my set up depending on where I was riding so it's always hard to recommend tires when I'm not familiar with the terrain. I crossed shopped my trc with the ASR5 but they are harder to come by. If you ever decide to sell the frame let me know! I'll never sell my trc, but if I ever need to replace it the ASR5 is first on the list.
 

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Maxxis is better.

Maxxis has 'max' in it, meaning the maximum or highest you can get. It even adds another 'X' so it's even more maximum, rather like the Spinal Tap amp that goes to eleven. Max-is. Six-max?

Schwalbe? What the feck does that mean? That's not even a word. That's a bad Scrabble hand. It's as if they had an office competition to find the most unpronounceable, meaningless word and Lester the geek won. Even if you write it backwards it's not much worse. Eblawhcs. Sch...it? wal..be? No wonder they don't write it on tyres in big yellow letters.
 

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Austin, Texas
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Your ASR must be a rocket with RR tires! I have a similar short travel snappy bike: blur trc. I prefer it with slower rubber because it's still very responsive and fast even on flatter sections, and traction is on par with my nomad3. That said, I would probably change my set up depending on where I was riding so it's always hard to recommend tires when I'm not familiar with the terrain. I crossed shopped my trc with the ASR5 but they are harder to come by. If you ever decide to sell the frame let me know! I'll never sell my trc, but if I ever need to replace it the ASR5 is first on the list.
It is most definitely a rocket. Yes, I will be keeping that frankenstein Yeti 26er as long as I am riding probably. Love it on the fast, quick switchbacks of Walnut Creek here in Central Texas, and a few other tracks around here. Other than those few, I will usually ride my 29er at some of the rockier places around here. Still haven't quite decided for sure, and also haven't heard much about the Conti's that would be a similar set up.

As I said, it seems difficult to pick up the Rocket Ron and Racing Ralph now in 26", without spending almost $100 a tire. I'll make the decision early this week.

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Austin, Texas
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Maxxis is better.

Maxxis has 'max' in it, meaning the maximum or highest you can get. It even adds another 'X' so it's even more maximum, rather like the Spinal Tap amp that goes to eleven. Max-is. Six-max?

Schwalbe? What the feck does that mean? That's not even a word. That's a bad Scrabble hand. It's as if they had an office competition to find the most unpronounceable, meaningless word and Lester the geek won. Even if you write it backwards it's not much worse. Eblawhcs. Sch...it? wal..be? No wonder they don't write it on tyres in big yellow letters.
Lol. Your reasoning is spot on. How could I possibly argue with that!?

As well, Tacocat spelled backwards, is Tacocat!

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After spending much of the summer on DHF, DHR, and DHRII, I think those things are heavy anchors. I probably don't have the skills to utilize them, or the legs to pedal them. The only other Minions I have ridden are fat bike tires, and while they were also boat anchors for the performance they bring the comparison is too far removed. From your list, if you really want super fast and quick you need to stick to the Schwalbe stuff. I hear what you are saying about cost, but my attic is chock full of Minions I hate and that didn't save me any money.
 

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Austin, Texas
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I probably was overthinking this, so I just went with my gut and hunted down that Rocket Ron and Racing Ralph...and pulled the trigger. I've loved how fast and silky the RaRa's have been through the years, I just wanted to step it up a little with more traction in the front. For what I ride the 26er on primarily, I'm sure this duo will impress, and interested to see/feel the difference/longevity addix may make.

I am very interested in some Conti combinations, as I understand they are very fast as well.

The Maxxis DHF/DHRii combo is phenomenal on my 29er, and I can't imagine that changing for a long time.

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I was upgrading my old WTB Velociraptors and went with Maxxis Aggressor rear and Ardent front. Love the combo for my southern clay over hard, sand, roots, and rock terrain. I found the DHFs too heavy and slow, just a little too downhillish for my riding.
 

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the wtb raptors :) omg, I had those back nearly 20 years ago on a Gary Fisher hardtail. Haven't thought about them in a long time.

I just started riding Schwalbe NN (f/r) this year and couldn't be happier. fast, grippy, and so far they are pretty strong. I've had some recent bad experiences with maxxi and I agree that they are notoriously heavy (and rarely as wide as advertised).

I also had a negative experience with conti mountain king prior to rolling with the NN's. Conti needs to get their shite together.
 

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After spending much of the summer on DHF, DHR, and DHRII, I think those things are heavy anchors. I probably don't have the skills to utilize them, or the legs to pedal them. The only other Minions I have ridden are fat bike tires, and while they were also boat anchors for the performance they bring the comparison is too far removed. From your list, if you really want super fast and quick you need to stick to the Schwalbe stuff. I hear what you are saying about cost, but my attic is chock full of Minions I hate and that didn't save me any money.
This really depends on the terrain. I agree that Minions are overkill for most trail riding. I still LOVE them. I don't care how much they weigh. I care about not crashing. It would be very interesting to have everyone in the Rider Down forum ride Minions for a year after their crash and rehabilitation, and see if they cut down or completely cut out their bad crashes. How many times has a Minion on the front and/or back saved me from crashing compared with a lesser tire? Not sure, but probably dozens of times compared with WTB, Kenda, Continental, and some off-brands I've had in the past. Those tires are not bad, don't get me wrong, but if you are going downhill in very rocky and/or loose dirt terrain, nothing I've ridden beats a Minion. Just last week I slipped in some very rocky terrain, rocks stacked on rocks, I thought for sure I'd crash; Rekon up front and Minion in back. The tires immediately hooked up and straightened out the bike once they got some traction back. Could that have happened with less knobby tires? I think not. I would have kept sliding off the trail and crashed.

I've never tried Schwalbe, so I can't judge them but their tread looks way too sparse for lugs/knobs to be up to spec for what I need downhill. Not that I'm great downhill or anything, but that's precisely the point: I need Minions or something similar in order to have a lot of fun downhill at a decent speed w/o crashing. If I had more skill, and always picked the perfect line every time, maybe I could get away with a lesser tire. Minions are point and shoot tires, you cannot go wrong with them.
 
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I haven't tried the brand new style Racing Ralphs but I much prefer the Rocket Ron to the previous RR. They seem to roll just as fast, have better traction, are just as lightweight or sometimes lighter, and their knobbies seem less inclined to shear off.
 

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I haven't tried the brand new style Racing Ralphs but I much prefer the Rocket Ron to the previous Racing Ralphs. They seem to roll just as fast, have better traction, are just as lightweight or sometimes lighter, and their knobbies seem less inclined to shear off.

I think Schwalbe redesigned the Ralphs to incorporate more features of the Rocket Ron.
 

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Austin, Texas
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
An update....

I took the Yeti to my fave bike guy, and he turned my 3 ring into a 1 ring, and put on the Rocket Ron and Racing Ralph f and r. I've ridden it several times while the Smuggler 29er was in for it's one month tune up.

I am extremely happy with that Schwalbe combination. Maybe it is because I have ridden the Racing Ralph's for so long on that bike, but it performs phenomenally...with a little more bite up front. They are so quick, and accelerate so effortlessly. Hell, next time I might try a Nobby Nic up front and a Rocket Ron out back, but I think this is the brand that just works so well for me on this bike. I pretty much just ride the 26er on quick, smoother trails with tons of tight switchbacks...but you will almost always encounter some sort of loose rock around here.

As far as the Transition, I am enjoying the DHF and DHRii, but when I do finally change them out, I will probably go with what my bike guy rolls with...a 2.5 High Roller in front, and a 2.4 Rekon in the back. He says I will REALLY notice how much easier they roll!

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The other excellent all round option is the Surly Extraterrestrial 26X2.5", very comfy too, maybe not super quick...and not the most durable if used on pavement a lot.
I'm on my second set with the Troll...

For a quick/comfortable/durable street tire the Schwalbe Almotion 26X2.15" is mighty nice...
 
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