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Trek Dual Sport 2 - off road

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Trek Dual Sport 2 - off road

Old 05-20-20, 04:52 PM
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Trek Dual Sport 2 - off road

Is this an adequate bike to try some easy mountain bike trails? Should I upgrade the stock tires that come with the bike (Bontraeger LT 2 700 x 38 c)? I am interested in doing some mountain biking but I would like to do some riding on some novice trails to see how much I enjoy it before buying a bike dedicated to off road biking.

Thanks
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Old 05-21-20, 01:58 PM
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Ive been using my 2020 DS2 for some single track courses and i would say, in its current form, you'll have a bit of trouble.
The GR1 tires are too thin you feel every hump in the trail.
the handlebar isn't wide enough and is more of a chore to steer around obstacles
the wellgo m141 pedals cant support my feet well enough at higher speeds

with that said, these are all easy fixes. I was able to fit 29" specialized fast trak 29x2.1 on my DS2, lots of room in front but the rear tire just BARELY clears the front derailleur cage.
i just recently put a 750mm handle bar on and a 50mm stem vs the old 100mm and it makes a world of difference in stability
i put race face chester pedals on it too after never trying them and they feel 10x more stable. i didn't know pedals would make such a difference

another trivial change you can do is get a Sunrace CSM680 cassette, the old HG31 has a 34t low gear and this one is 40T. it makes climbing hills much better.

i've ridden a comparable marlin 5 thats more trail rated, but if you spend 150-200 on your DS2, you can get a much better experience on single tracks with it

EDIT:

If you've not bought the bike yet and do more than 30% of your riding off-road, don't get any Dual Sport. Get a Marlin 5 or 6 and then hybrid tires for road riding
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Old 05-21-20, 03:25 PM
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Originally Posted by linkeds2
Ive been using my 2020 DS2 for some single track courses and i would say, in its current form, you'll have a bit of trouble.
The GR1 tires are too thin you feel every hump in the trail.
the handlebar isn't wide enough and is more of a chore to steer around obstacles
the wellgo m141 pedals cant support my feet well enough at higher speeds

with that said, these are all easy fixes. I was able to fit 29" specialized fast trak 29x2.1 on my DS2, lots of room in front but the rear tire just BARELY clears the front derailleur cage.
i just recently put a 750mm handle bar on and a 50mm stem vs the old 100mm and it makes a world of difference in stability
i put race face chester pedals on it too after never trying them and they feel 10x more stable. i didn't know pedals would make such a difference

another trivial change you can do is get a Sunrace CSM680 cassette, the old HG31 has a 34t low gear and this one is 40T. it makes climbing hills much better.

i've ridden a comparable marlin 5 thats more trail rated, but if you spend 150-200 on your DS2, you can get a much better experience on single tracks with it

EDIT:

If you've not bought the bike yet and do more than 30% of your riding off-road, don't get any Dual Sport. Get a Marlin 5 or 6 and then hybrid tires for road riding

I should have mentioned I already own the DS2, had it for a little over a year. I took it out to a nature park last week and really enjoyed some easy off road trails (except for some sandy patches) which got me to thinking about more off road riding. Your upgrade suggestions might be just what I am looking for to get some more trail riding experience without making a major financial commitment, thanks, much appreciated.
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Old 05-21-20, 05:47 PM
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I agree that you'll need to upsize your tires for off-road use like that. If you can fit 2" tires on your frame, that'd make a huge difference. You'll be able to run them at a lower pressure and you'll gain a ton of traction and control off-road.

If you find one that has a center tread ridge, you may even find it not unpleasant for road riding. I have some Vittoria Mezcals on my MTB, but I pump them up to 60 psi and ride them on the road sometimes, and they roll out nicely. They're designed as a hardpack tire, so they're not mud tires, but they do stick pretty well on most off-road surfaces.
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Old 05-21-20, 06:57 PM
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Originally Posted by hokiefyd
I agree that you'll need to upsize your tires for off-road use like that. If you can fit 2" tires on your frame, that'd make a huge difference. You'll be able to run them at a lower pressure and you'll gain a ton of traction and control off-road.

If you find one that has a center tread ridge, you may even find it not unpleasant for road riding. I have some Vittoria Mezcals on my MTB, but I pump them up to 60 psi and ride them on the road sometimes, and they roll out nicely. They're designed as a hardpack tire, so they're not mud tires, but they do stick pretty well on most off-road surfaces.

Thanks for the suggestion, I think I will contact Trek support to see what the widest tire I can use on the DS2.

Aloha
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Old 05-21-20, 07:43 PM
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Originally Posted by roskobosko
Thanks for the suggestion, I think I will contact Trek support to see what the widest tire I can use on the DS2.

Aloha
their website says 29x1.8 is the widest.

however. I barely fit 29x2.1 On mine with the 20mm rim
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Old 07-15-23, 11:47 PM
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Originally Posted by roskobosko
Is this an adequate bike to try some easy mountain bike trails? Should I upgrade the stock tires that come with the bike (Bontraeger LT 2 700 x 38 c)? I am interested in doing some mountain biking but I would like to do some riding on some novice trails to see how much I enjoy it before buying a bike dedicated to off road biking.

Thanks

Hi..

I just took delivery of a 2023 Dual Sport 2 (gen 4). I went with the DS2 for several reasons. I wanted the gear spread of the 2x9 (18-Speeds) and I wanted it in Trek Black. Plus, I ride 90% on road and 10% off road. I didnít like the low gearing of the Marlin line but I wanted to make my DS2 more trail worthy.

The DS is really a great bike. Itís very capable of off road use and has lots of upgrade potential.

*Here is a list of my current off-road upgrades & future plans;

(1) The tires were changed out to 29 x 2.1 Maxxis Crossmark ii with Tannus Armour. I love the way it rides! Itís Fast, smooth and rolls over everything Iíve thrown at it.

(2) The handlebars were changed out to Dimension 720mm 31.8 35mm rise (this made a huge difference in comfort, upright position and off road control). This alone took all the stress off of my rotator cuffs. The stock bars on a Medium DS are only 600mm wide. Take note these handlebars will not fit a DS1 for those seeing this that own a DS1.

(3) I also changed out the pedals to aluminum Oneup.

(4) I ordered the Suntour NEX Remote Lockout upgrade kit to replace the manual lockout knob. It includes the Remote Switch, Specific remote capable damper and Remote housing. Itís on its way. 15 minute install at best you donít even need to take the tire offf. The damper is installed from the top.

(5) The front rotor will also be upgrade from 160mm to 180mm. This is on order as well. About 12% more stopping power (great for downhill).

(6) I also added an AARON suspension seat post. Game changer.

(7) I am also considering swapping out the rear cassette for a 11-40. You will also need a longer chain (perhaps 2 links). This will allow the top speed to remain the same but allow hill climbs to be much easier.

(8) I will probably upgrade to a 80mm remote lockout fork at some point in the future. Iím already working on a simple mod to add 15mm to 20mm of travel to the stock NEX forks. At the very least Iíll gain it in tube length. If it works out good enough then I probably wonít upgrade unless I really want the larger 29mm or 30mm forks (currently theyíre 28mm).

https://youtu.be/Et9brf55H7w

Last edited by ViO; 07-25-23 at 06:18 PM.
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Old 07-16-23, 12:11 AM
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Originally Posted by roskobosko
Is this an adequate bike to try some easy mountain bike trails? Should I upgrade the stock tires that come with the bike (Bontraeger LT 2 700 x 38 c)? I am interested in doing some mountain biking but I would like to do some riding on some novice trails to see how much I enjoy it before buying a bike dedicated to off road biking.

Thanks
it is not a good mountain bike. Itís not good for any slightly fun downhill trails.

You could make it a bit more softer over some chunky trails by putting 2.1Ē tires on.

But even its sibling, the trek Marlin. Is a much better bike for mountain biking
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Old 07-16-23, 04:22 AM
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Schwalbe Smart Sam might be a tire worth considering.
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Old 07-16-23, 04:39 AM
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Cyclocross and gravel bike tires have traditionally been between 32 and 38 mm wide. You'll be fine riding your current tires off-road.
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Old 07-18-23, 07:40 AM
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Originally Posted by Trav1s
Schwalbe Smart Sam might be a tire worth considering.
I had 44mm Smart Sam on my DS3, in my top list for versatility: good compromise between road and loose surface. The only reason why I don't use them anymore is that they are not Tubeless Ready.

The tires I used in winter have similarities with the Smart Sam (Pirelli Cinturato Gravel M), but in summer I prefer gravel tires with smaller knobs (Schwalbe G-One Allround for example): less rolling resistance, and good enough on light trails when it's dry - the DS3 is not a MTB, so I don't see the point of going on too hard trails with it).

Last edited by poiuyt; 07-18-23 at 07:47 AM.
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Old 07-18-23, 07:58 AM
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Worth a mention. If youíre planning on riding in wet weather a lot or in off road muddy conditions then the Vitoria BARZO is the best choice 29 x 2.1. This tire is hands down the best wet handling XT tire out there.
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Old 07-19-23, 07:28 AM
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The issue with MTB tires is that they move the cursor too far on the off-road side, and penalise the on-road abilities too much. I'm quite pleased with the Cinturato M in the mud and on road, but there are many other tires that offer the same kind of behaviour: WTB Nano, Schwalbe Smart Sam,... The development of gravel bikes has been great for bikes like the dual sport, especially on the tires offering.

Also seing, your Wishlist for the upgrades, a comment: having a good suspension is much more important than increasing the travel to 80mm (I made the upgrade on my bike, from NEX to Paragon, the improvement is really impressive - I stayed with 65mm of travel). Before replacing the rear derailleur, I also tried an 11-42 9 speed cassette, shifting performance was horrible, with the Acera derailleur, I preferred at the end upgrading to 10-speed Deore than keeping the cassette and having a Microshift Advent (very hard to find in long cage version, and more expensive in practice - RRP is a bit lower, Deore are often discounted).

(the list of upgrades I did is here: Post pictures of your Hybrid - since then there's a carbon seatpost - for compliance, not weight) and the fork).

Last edited by poiuyt; 07-19-23 at 09:18 AM.
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Old 07-19-23, 05:56 PM
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If thatís the case then I would definitely consider the Maxxis Pace 29 x 2.1. Itís a great road and gravel tire. Not too aggressive at all. A nice balance and it rolls fast.
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