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Old 03-25-03, 04:17 PM   #1
urbanking
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Wider tire front or rear?

Hey, its that time of year again, and after a close inspection i decided that a new rear wheel was needed. Now, i can put the front on the back if need be becuase it is a reversible tire. Right now i have 2.1" front and rear, my next tire is going to be a little wider becuase i am in favour of absorbing more while I do some urban riding. My question is simple, shoul dthe wider tire go on the front or rear (on a hardtail)? I have had suggestions in both directions what do you think?
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Old 03-25-03, 04:24 PM   #2
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If I were to add a wider tire, it would definately go on the rear wheel. That is where most of the weight is, not to mention the weight of my butt. My arms can handle more than everything else.
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Old 03-25-03, 04:55 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally posted by Sailguy
If I were to add a wider tire, it would definately go on the rear wheel. That is where most of the weight is, not to mention the weight of my butt. My arms can handle more than everything else.
The Wider tire goes on the front for grip reasons. You would sooner have the rear wash out than the front. While both washing outs are bad, having the rear wash out can be saved from falling where a front washout results in crashing and burning.
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Old 03-25-03, 05:48 PM   #4
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I would throw it on the front. If you're front tire gets over an obstacle or slippery terrain, your rear is most likly not going to have a problem. This is the rational that I have heard in regards to mountain biking. The wider front tire will also give more grip, as danka24 said previously. It is much easier to control the bike when the rear tire breaks loose than when the front tire breaks losse. A wider rear tire for traction is more of a carry-over from cars. Wider tires in the rear do help with traction to a degree.

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Old 03-25-03, 06:56 PM   #5
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You guys have good points. My rationale is mostly on vibration dampening, and load support when commuting. Traction never even entered my mind.
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Old 03-25-03, 08:12 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally posted by danka24
The Wider tire goes on the front for grip reasons. You would sooner have the rear wash out than the front. While both washing outs are bad, having the rear wash out can be saved from falling where a front washout results in crashing and burning.
I can definitely attest to this. One weekend I was gonna go on a ride with my friend who had just bought a new MTB. Well he wanted to hit the trails, but I had outfitted mine w/ a pair of slicks last season. In my haste I only had time to put one knobby tire on... on the back... before his patience wore out. Let me tell you... it was one of the scariest rides of my life. Add to that that it was only the second time I'd been on my bike since recovering from my broken wrist last aug.....
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Old 03-25-03, 08:46 PM   #7
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Of course, Sheldon Brown has a lot of pros and cons on the issue. His answer: it depends!

- On pavement (smooth or bumpy), rainy or slippery but hard soil: get two similar tires or place the widest on your rear wheel. Roughly 2/3 of you weight is there, so it's logical. (i.e. you can have, say 70 psi with 700x32 front and 70 psi with 700x37 rear, but you would need 90 psi with 700x32 rear).

- On soft or gooy terrain, a wide tire in front makes sense, because it prevents the front wheel from "digging" in the sand. Although if the terrain is really that soft, you probably need two wide tires...

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Old 03-25-03, 09:12 PM   #8
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all i can add is: wider on front
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Old 03-25-03, 09:55 PM   #9
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Another vote for front
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Old 03-25-03, 10:31 PM   #10
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I normally use matched sizes front and back however during those times when I went with dissimilar sizes, I've always gone wider front for better steering authority and narrower rear for less resistance and faster acceleration. Of course this is based on XC MTB experience. YMMV. Also I should probably add that I also ran position specific tyres.
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Old 03-25-03, 11:51 PM   #11
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When i ride downhill fireroads my rear washes out regularly and i never crash. When the front does i go down, period. So if a wider front will prevent washouts better, i'm getting the biggest front that'll fit my bike !
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Old 03-26-03, 12:10 AM   #12
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I use the same size front & back with decent results in FL sugar sand
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Old 03-26-03, 03:36 PM   #13
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I have a 2.5 wtb weirwolf on the front and a panaracer xc pro 2.1 on the back. A wider tire on the front gives you more control. just think about it, if you skid out on the back tire you can still recover it. But if you skid out on the front you are screwed. Add the tire to the front
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Old 03-26-03, 04:15 PM   #14
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All very good reasons, the majority says front, so I will go with front, any suggestions on brand? Something cheap, a knobby will do but nothing too aggresive becuase i dont ride in wet conditions, and the trails around here are hard packed.
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Old 03-26-03, 06:40 PM   #15
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Maxxis Bling Bling Dual should balance it out.
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