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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Does anyone have any tire recommedations? I'm 110lb and have Specialized Team Control Armadillos that keep throwing me off. I'm building a new Juliana SL and want something lightweight, but reliable and comfy (like a pair of old flip flops). I ride mostly dry Nor.Cal. singletrack, with the usual obstacles thrown in - a rock or two, some gravel, tree roots and divets. I don't tend to ride much when it's wet/cakey.

I've read all the mtbreviews, but unfortunately they have a major flaw - the reviewer's weight is not asked for. I could be reading reviews from 300lb men, so a lot of it is guesswork.

Any feedback/personal experience, would be gratefully appreciated.

Thanks,

Sam W
 

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life is a barrel o'fun
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I just got the Blur, and it came with the race package. This includes very lightweight treads.

First time I took it out, got a flat while riding over thorns. As thorns are quite a regular thing around here, I knew I'd have to get slime tubes installed. Since I'm not a racer, I'm not a weight weenie, and don't care if slime/thicker treads are heavier- I save loads of time by not having to repair flats!

But thorns probably aren't such a concern where you are (guessing.) If this is the case, then I'd suggest going with racing treads for lighter weight. Kevlar strips instead of slime tubes would provide lighter thorn protection. As for specific brands, I'll leave that to the rest of the posts.....!
 

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i like the IRC Trailbear 2.25. good traction and slow tread wear. they weigh-in at about 735gm but that is light considering size of tire. since it is a large volume tire i can run low pressures. the tread pattern is a lot like the Panaracer Fire XC but rolls a bit faster on pavement and hardpack due to added center blocks. thorns are an issue here in the AZ desert but i have not had any problems since having these tires(about 4 months).

Rita
 

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I've not tried too many tires but **love** the ones I'm using now. Specialized Roll X Pro Women's racers. My LBS said they were built for lighter-weight riders. I've found them to be fast yet still stick to the turns. Some of the trails here have a lot of sand that tends to collect in corners after a rain and I've not had problems with my back wheel washing out. I have really turned up my speed on corners since using these tires.
 

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Glue Sniffer
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I'm also a panty-waist (light rider), but I don't think a rider's weight has that much to do with the tire. The main difference is the air pressure that you can run. As a light weight, I can regularly get away with running 20-25psi, whereas the heavier folks damned near flat the things if they pedal around the parking lot.

I've mainly stayed within the WTB line of tires, so my point of reference may be kind of limited. I've been extremely happy with the MutanoRaptor 2.4 as a light, but grippy, tire. I like a wider volume tire, 'cause I'm all about grip and control. However, the Mutano 2.4 is closer to a 2.25 in actuality. The odd part about the 2.4 is that it weights less than the Mutuno 1.95 and 2.24 at 565g. It combines the grippier outer tread for cornering, but a lower profile center tread for carrying speed.

Anyway, if I were you, I'd put more weight in whether the person recommending the tires was informed and experienced with your trail conditions than weather or not they are as light as you.

You can just get away with running lower air pressure in lower volume tires.
 

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Both my Blur and my wife's Juliana SL came with Kenda Karmas. I found them to be too lightweight for me (at ~200lbs) though they really hooked up great for such a light tread pattern. They seem to work really well for my wife, though in about 8 months she got a tear in the rear tire. The front is still going strong after almost a year's use and is actually wearing rather well. Lots of loose and sandy stuff up here in the Inland Northwest.

At your weight, you could get away with most any of the lighter weight tires (I'm jealous). I'm one of those guys that flats in the parking lot messing around waiting for the ride to start. There are many newer tires out there with fast-rolling tread patterns that really hook up well. The Specialized Roll-X, Continental Explorers, and a raft of others. I've found that rear tires with horizontally-oriented "paddles" seem to hook up the best for me on soft, loose climbs, however. A favorite of some of the locals are the Panaracer Fire XC's.

Good luck on your search,

MTBmoose
Spokane, WA

mtbkers said:
Does anyone have any tire recommedations? I'm 110lb and have Specialized Team Control Armadillos that keep throwing me off. I'm building a new Juliana SL and want something lightweight, but reliable and comfy (like a pair of old flip flops). I ride mostly dry Nor.Cal. singletrack, with the usual obstacles thrown in - a rock or two, some gravel, tree roots and divets. I don't tend to ride much when it's wet/cakey.

I've read all the mtbreviews, but unfortunately they have a major flaw - the reviewer's weight is not asked for. I could be reading reviews from 300lb men, so a lot of it is guesswork.

Any feedback/personal experience, would be gratefully appreciated.

Thanks,

Sam W
 

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Another vote for Kenda Karma's. I used to run Hutchison Mesquito's and switch to the Kenda Karma's. Similar tread pattern, cheaper and lighter.

Last week I bought two new pair of the Karma's and converted my Racer X to Stan's tubeless with a new set of Karma's. So far it's great. As soon as I have some down time the second new pair of tires and Stans will go on my softtail.
 

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mtbkers said:
....
I've read all the mtbreviews, but unfortunately they have a major flaw - the reviewer's weight is not asked for. I could be reading reviews from 300lb men, so a lot of it is guesswork.
......
The rider's weight alone is a relatively small factor with most tires. A much bigger factor in tire performance is the pressure at which you run your tires for a given body weight. With pressure set too high the tire cannot conform to the terrain and traction is compromised. This makes the tire feel sketchy on loose stuff and harder to climb over rocks and such, but they tend to roll easier. Running tire pressure too low can make the tires feel loose, increases the risk of pinch flats, and rolling resistance is increased. Basically, you need to experiment and find the optimum pressure for your body weight, tire design, and the terrain you're riding.

All that said, tread pattern and tire compound can make a huge difference in tire performance. This is where you're going to see meaningful information in reviews. Tire volume is also a factor. In general, tires with more volume(wider tires) can be run at lower pressures which gives better traction, but the sacrifice is higher rolling resistance.

Bottom line, try not to get too hung up on rider weight when looking into tires. Tire pressure, tread pattern, rubber compound and volume are really what you need to pay attention to. You can have a great tire that rides like crap if it is not properly inflated.
 

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I just got some nokain nbx 2.3's for my slayer and really like them. very grippy and fast rolling. I think they also come in 2.1's. You are the same weight as me and therefor should be able to run them at low psi. I run 25 psi which really helps in traction.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks for the input

Thanks for the helpful info both here and in the general forum.

I have used different tires and pressures and different riding conditions, but it gets really expensive to keep doing that. My local club riders don't really have much of an opinion on their tires given that they're usually the ones that "came with the bike" (which is every brand you have and haven't heard of).

Brain picking worked when I built my roadbike. I had a majority vote on a set of tires that I'd overlooked due to their high PSI, but for my weight they've been perfect (running them much lower). I'm a great believer in wise opinions. Plus, I've researched everything sooo much for building my mountain bike that I'm at the end of my research attention span. Opinions are so much easier to digest than 200 reviews about one particular tire.

One thing I will say to anyone reading this in the future - if you're a lightweight, never ever buy Specialized Armadillos. I've tried riding them high/low, reverse, and they still feel like shite. I've had two trips to ER since riding with them (that could just be me, but I never used to be that clumsy!).

Maybe I should take up something less dangerous like extreme knitting!

Thanks again.
 

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I'm with Catzilla...

My bike came with the stock Specialized tires which were okay, but made me feel a bit sketchy at times (of course being a first timer starting in February I was sketchy anyway). Switched to the MutanoRaptor 2.4's and feel much more comfortable in all the Georgia terrain. They handle the sand, mud and roots fine. I've got 'em full of tubeless slime and haven't had any flat troubles for more than three months. Again, racers might not like the extra weight the slime adds, but I've been noticing my average speeds climbing, so the weight isn't too much of an issue, especially since I'm not on the lightest of bikes anyway.

M
 

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Kenda 2.1 Blue Groove/Nevegal

mtbkers said:
Does anyone have any tire recommedations? I'm 110lb and have Specialized Team Control Armadillos that keep throwing me off. I'm building a new Juliana SL and want something lightweight, but reliable and comfy (like a pair of old flip flops). I ride mostly dry Nor.Cal. singletrack, with the usual obstacles thrown in - a rock or two, some gravel, tree roots and divets. I don't tend to ride much when it's wet/cakey.

I've read all the mtbreviews, but unfortunately they have a major flaw - the reviewer's weight is not asked for. I could be reading reviews from 300lb men, so a lot of it is guesswork.

Any feedback/personal experience, would be gratefully appreciated.

Thanks,

Sam W
Theyre a tad on the large side or closer to a 2.25 casing. Grip/hookup and predictablility are good. Also big props for the NBX 2.3 too.
 

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i worship Mr T
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mtbkers said:
Does anyone have any tire recommedations? I'm 110lb and have Specialized Team Control Armadillos that keep throwing me off. I'm building a new Juliana SL and want something lightweight, but reliable and comfy (like a pair of old flip flops). I ride mostly dry Nor.Cal. singletrack, with the usual obstacles thrown in - a rock or two, some gravel, tree roots and divets. I don't tend to ride much when it's wet/cakey.

I've read all the mtbreviews, but unfortunately they have a major flaw - the reviewer's weight is not asked for. I could be reading reviews from 300lb men, so a lot of it is guesswork.

Any feedback/personal experience, would be gratefully appreciated.

Thanks,

Sam W
hutchinson pythons. try 'em, you'll like 'em. they're great in most conditions except mud - they completely suck in mud - but they hook up well in dry, tacky, and technical conditions. they're light weight and i haven't had a problem with puncture flats. my only complaint about them is that they can be a bit squirreley in corners but in the end if you trust them they hook up and don't slide out.

you might also want to look at any tire that has a rounded (rather than a square) profile. i find that a rounded profile makes for better cornering. the specialized tires tend to have a pretty square profile. as do Panracer Fire XC's and a number of other tires.

the Kenda Khrisma (sp?) might be another good option. i have a set but have not tried them yet.

rt (btw, i weigh 105)
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Funnily enough

That's what I just ordered. I decided to try the Python airlights first. I totally know what you mean about the square profile. I couldn't put my finger on it, but my specializeds are way too bulky around the edges, I am convinced that's what's been throwing me off my bike.

Wow 105lb. I thought I was a flyweight at 110!
 

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mtbkers said:
That's what I just ordered. I decided to try the Python airlights first. I totally know what you mean about the square profile. I couldn't put my finger on it, but my specializeds are way too bulky around the edges, I am convinced that's what's been throwing me off my bike.
let me know how you like the pythons. i've been riding them for about a year now and have generally been happy. fyi, i live on the east coast so i don't do a lot of desert riding....ok, i don't do any desert riding :D but the pythons have done well in most of the conditions from florida to western NC. for mud conditions the hutchinson chameleons are good but heavy and the hutchinson mosquitos are excellent but are almost a semi-slick.

mtbkers said:
Wow 105lb. I thought I was a flyweight at 110!
:D yep, i'm the uber-flyweight...but still about 8 lbs heavier than i was last year at this time.......i'm sure it's all muscle....really. ;)

rt
 

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Agree with *rt*......

The Hutchinson Python now is made as a Lite version, and hooks up well in dry conditions. It is NOT a good mud tire, and packs up fairly quickly, but seems to corner well even though its climbing traction is compromised. Two other tricks are: 1) mount the rear tire backwards, so the tread pattern is reversed...it may improve cornering; and 2) consider using Stan's sealant, which can be used to make tubeless tires fairly puncture-proof, and can also be used on regular rims without tubes....your LBS can provide the kit and rim strips for the regular ("tubed") wheels. The Python Lites are "pricey" (?a word)....running about $45 a tire at REI, etc. Best to look for them on-line. ;)
 

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another Kenda Girl

I just got my new bike and we replaced teh stock rubber with the kharmas and so far am loving them. I have ridden about 100km on them so far in mostly dry Ontario Singletrack but have also had one race in thunderstorms and Mud puddles. These things are working great for me, I tip the scale at 72Lbs. 5' tall. currently running about 25lbs pressure in the rear and 2-3 lbs less in the front
 

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I've been lovin' my Maxxis Larsen MiMo (1.9) rear tire for several years now. weighs less than 400gms, and is a semi-tread. It has surprisingly good traction...very important here in Pisgah with the slick rocks and roots and mud. You might be able to use the matching front tire in your area. I'm using a Velociraptor 1.9 front tire (which they don't make any more...I have to be careful with it!) for extra grip in the front.

I find tires wider than 2.0 to be too difficult to manuever through technical uphill singletrack.
 

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How many people cary multiple sets of rubber with them on race weekends?

I was looking at adding a set of Roll X pro Women's to my tub-o-stuff I carry for wet conditions as I heard these would hook up good in the rain. DO many change rubber for rain or dry conditions and does it make that big a diff in the mud? or are you going to slide no mater what
 
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