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What does suspension travel have to do with tire choice?

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What does suspension travel have to do with tire choice?

Old 01-27-19, 01:19 PM
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Telkwa
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What does suspension travel have to do with tire choice?

I bought a coupla Conti Trail King folding tires recently. The piece of cardboard that wrapped around the folding tires had a graph inside. Conditions were listed along the horizontal X axis (Hardpack, Mixed, Loose/Soft, Mud).

But the vertical Y axis seemed to be concerned about suspension travel. The graph recommends Conti's "Der Kaiser" tire for DH long suspension (180 - 200mm) bikes. At the other end of the graph are short-travel (80 - 120mm) XC bikes, where Conti recommends their Mountain King or X-King tires.

On YouTube I watched a Schwalbe video where the young man was talking about the range of Schwalbe knobbies and proper applications. He also mentioned suspension travel as a factor in choosing the right tire.

I don't get it. How does suspension travel affect the tire choice? I realize that knobby size/spacing and rubber compounds are different, and a mud tire is not the same as a hardpack tire is not the same as a DH tire, but what does suspension travel have to do with it?
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Old 01-27-19, 01:28 PM
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Probably Nothing..

More what your riding uses are for the bike , loose dirt single track, fine pea gravel roads than how long tour fork travels.. where are you riding?
It have big fork bottoming out drops?


Buy several, different tires, change them & see what You like best , for where you ride..





..
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Old 01-27-19, 01:52 PM
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If we could just ignore marketing jive, it wouldn't confuse us.
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Old 01-27-19, 10:07 PM
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Tire volume & pressure contribute to your overall suspension.
I would suspect a shorter travel would be stiffer, so the tire would need a bit more pressure/volume to avoid pinch flats when you "hit the stops".
That's my guess from a non suspension, flat, smooth pavement rider.
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Old 01-27-19, 10:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Bill Kapaun View Post
Tire volume & pressure contribute to your overall suspension.
I would suspect a shorter travel would be stiffer, so the tire would need a bit more pressure/volume to avoid pinch flats when you "hit the stops".
That's my guess from a non suspension, flat, smooth pavement rider.
Yet the big travel bikes often have bigger tire profiles too. as FB says it's about riding style. Big travel bikes are thought of as being more DH and big air bikes so their tires need to be more burley too. If I remember right suspension travel doesn't reduce the forces acting on the tires, just extends the time duration of the force. I also suspect the consequence of a tire blow out on a big rig at speed or at "altitude" is worse then a cross country rig. Andy
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Old 01-28-19, 10:48 AM
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Originally Posted by AnkleWork View Post
If we could just ignore marketing jive, it wouldn't confuse us.
+1 I almost mentioned marketing in my original post, but didn't want to sound too cynical.

We're in our 60's, so no DH for us. Most of our riding is gravel rails-to-trails. To be honest, my priorities are avoiding flats while getting some exercise, battling depression, etc. And I want my wife to have the best tires for the conditions. Until recently, I was out of the loop on bicycle development, so I'm just trying to catch up on things that don't make sense.
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Old 01-28-19, 11:09 AM
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FWIW .. I have used the Continental Travel Contact tires that came on my Trekking Bike.. Rails to trails being well graded and not much climbing at all ..

they would be over the actual needs as they had long tours on the road, and continuing on past the end of the pavement , in mind..

I used mine for a few years, buying the bike they were on , 4 years old.

A smooth band center, so rolls easily on the macadam , with a row of knobs on the edges for the unpaved roads..
gatorskin mesh reinforcement the whole casing width, for self supported touring loads..

I've had a bent rusty nail go thru the sidewall not the tread....

Only took them off for Schwalbes, because townsfolk kept assuming the tread design was a knobby tire worn bald.. and repeatedly telling me..






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