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Need suggestions on tires for my mtn bike.

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Need suggestions on tires for my mtn bike.

Old 07-16-12, 05:21 PM
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spldart
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Need suggestions on tires for my mtn bike.

I'm not gonna get into details on the bike itself because I'll get a bunch of ich, blech or whateva's... Suffice it to say I have 10k miles on a mongoose from a dept store and now I have bought another Mongoose online.
I like it and I'm happy. Now... On to my question.. Which I believe I will phrase in such a way that it will be very easy to understand what I want from a tire.

Old bike with thousands of miles has worn many 26" tires. I ride a very varied set of conditions. gravel, sand, mud, dirt, grass, road and sidewalk.... etc etc.
The tires that fit my riding conditions and make my ride the most optimal for this veritable cornucopia of conditions are the Kenda 26x1.96 k-898 aka chisler
I'm aware of the bad reviews but they work perfect for low rolling resistance on road and sidewalk yet decent off road tracking for me. I haven't found a better tire for my mix of riding yet.
I'm now on a bike with 29 inch wheels. Prepackaged tires are a name I cant find online but I have 700x50c and 29x1.95 to throw at yah.
Is there ANY 29 inch semi slick tires out there? Or anything close to that to give me adequate off road with low rolling resistance on road?

Less important facts. Will be adding slime filled tubes and liners to the tire/wheel assemblies. I know it adds tons of weight but I had to on the 26" wheel bike because I had 1 to 2 flats a week because of nails, screws, staples, glass, etc etc in H-town. Have to do same for the 29"

And if your response is (should of stuck with 26" wheels.) My response is. I was really interested in trying 29's. When I wear this one out in several thousand miles I'll just go to whichever wheel has made me most happy

Last edited by spldart; 07-16-12 at 05:24 PM. Reason: spelled 'slick' 'click'.
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Old 07-16-12, 05:22 PM
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Oh! And thank you very much for any input on the tires choice
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Old 07-16-12, 06:08 PM
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I think the Velociraptors and Smoke Dart combos were good multi purpose tires. They are both Front and Rear specific. You can find 2 for 1 pricing on the internet if you look for it.

Here is also a good hook up on Maxxis Raze. Strong and durable. Again a good multi purpose tire IMO.
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Old 07-16-12, 06:15 PM
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I have WTB Weirwolf tires on my mountain bike, and they're the best I've used in all the years I've ridden. From the days of the Specialized Ground Control, through WTB Velociraptors. The Weirwolf is, to my way of riding, an amazingly well balanced tire. Aggressive in the dirt, yet rolls reasonably well (much better than Velociraptors) on pavement.

It's far from a semi-slick, though. I decided to put up with some loss of speed on the pavement so I'd have better traction in the dirt.
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Old 07-16-12, 09:16 PM
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Around here Dick's Sporting Goods sells a Swiss Army tire. Best tire I've found for the mix of riding that I do. Low rolling resistance but good traction on the trails. Not sure if they make it in a 29.
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Old 07-17-12, 08:54 AM
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You might consider a Bontrager tire if you have a local Trek dealer. Because even though you pay retail, you have a money back guarantee-- so you can ride it everywhere for a month and if you don't like how it rolls, how it does in the mud, or whatever then you take it back and try another.

They have a lot to pick from because you might be looking for more of a hybrid tire instead of a true MTB tire. For a MTB tire I would look at the 29-1: http://www.bontrager.com/model/09484 If I interpreted your first post wrong and you do more dirt, they have a lot of tires more aggressive than the 29-1.

For a hybrid tire that does better on the street, try the H5: http://www.bontrager.com/model/09390 It has enough tread for gravel and hardpack, but won't be too good in actual mud.
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Old 07-17-12, 09:05 AM
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Yeah. A hybrid tire leaning towards street. Off road is about 40% of my riding and I usually avoid mud but don't always have the options. Muddy stretches, when they can't be avoided only make up 1% of my riding.
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Old 07-17-12, 09:25 AM
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ok. besides the two tires I mentioned, another thing to consider is a file tread cyclocross tire. very fast on the street and hardpack.

my favorites are Michelin Cyclocross Jet and Ritchey Speedmax. but there are many, many to pick from. they have more dirt capability than hybrid/touring tires.
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Old 07-17-12, 09:53 AM
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Any opinions on the Bontrager FR3 29er
412408?
It seems to have a similar near contiguous middle tread for low rolling resistance similar to the Kenda k-898.

Still.. Might be a bit to aggressive for my ride. Dunno.

Last edited by spldart; 07-17-12 at 09:56 AM.
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Old 07-17-12, 10:43 AM
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the FR3 is one of my riding buddies' favorite. but he does use it for singletrack MTB trails, and it's probably sub-optimal on mostly paved roads.
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Old 07-17-12, 11:04 AM
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Thanks for the input. Man! This is hard. I already know what works for me on 26" wheels. I had no idea I would have this much trouble finding something equivalent for 29's
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Old 07-17-12, 11:46 AM
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Check out Jensonusa: http://www.jensonusa.com/Bicycle-Tires?@p2;o10883 - they stock practically every 29er tire out there.
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Old 08-06-12, 07:20 PM
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Welp.. I ordered the Bontrager FR3 29er last week. I am keeping all your recommendations in mind however and I appreciate the input. The tread pattern on the fr3 is just most like what I have found to be good for my riding. And Fyi... The rear tire this bike came with, brand name appears to be uamcom on the sidewall, is thread bear under 200 miles. 215 miles and I can see the ply threads between almost every center knob. I have never had a tire wear out as fast as that. Mongoose factory department store pacific cycle crap or otherwise. If the FR3's turn out to be as soft as these I will need to add "fast and hard compound" to my requisite for new tires. I'll let you know what I think of the FR3's
FYI
FR3's are going in with liners, origin 8, and sealant filled tubes, Joe's No Flats self-sealing tubes.

Already had to adjust crank bearings. Earliest ever for the mileage.
Avid BB7's 185mm front 160 mm rear do very well on this bike.
Factory pedals look tough and seem strong but got replaced with allow pedals I like anywho.
Seat stem to short. replaced.
Kick stand to short.... Greenfield 185 mm also to short... as well as the 205mm but adding a coupling bolt to the end of the 205 fixed that.
Confy avenir seat treating my butt well
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Bell headlights and one tailight of course no problem. Along with compass
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Got a bunch more coming. End cost... Bike bought for frame and wheels 1/3 total value. Add on's and upgrades.. 2/3 value.
Oh.. and custom fabricated Am/Fm sony radio on a bike mount I can disconnect fairly readily. It fits to the steer stem. <-hope I got the bike part name correct.
Next paycheck may see new crankset. I need a faster gear ratio so thinking bigger large crank sprocket. Smaller final gear on rear cassette isn't an option.


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Old 08-06-12, 09:25 PM
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I love my Kenda small block 8s. I ride single track and commute with them. at 60psi they roll very well on the street. I have stans in them too.
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Old 08-08-12, 02:28 PM
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I have these too and love them....
Originally Posted by slowride454 View Post
I love my Kenda small block 8s. I ride single track and commute with them. at 60psi they roll very well on the street. I have stans in them too.
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Old 08-09-12, 04:10 PM
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Got my FR3's installed 25 minutes ago and have my speedo adjusted for the new circumference. Went to test the rolling resistance in the parking lot here at work. I am very pleased with the speed of this tire. And the tread also looks plenty aggressive for the dirt. The larger size 2.35 over the factory 1.95's is a tiny issue. The knobs on once side of the rear just barely touch the swing arm making a tiny bit of noise. Hafta see what I can do about that. Otherwise I'm all grins. Now to see how long they last. Odometer reset.

Oh... running 40psi rear 30psi front for the quick test. Haven't decided on final inflation.

Last edited by spldart; 08-09-12 at 04:15 PM. Reason: add psi
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Old 08-09-12, 06:31 PM
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You could trim the knobs-- CAREFULLY-- a tiny bit with an exacto knife or a sharp, strong pair of scissors. Or you could get a hand file, which is more work but easier to avoid overdoing it.

This assumes it really is a tiny rub. For any significant rubbing, you need to replace the tire. I think I mentioned earlier this is no problem with a Bontrager. Take it back, full refund or exchange. Do this before modifying it!
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Old 08-09-12, 07:31 PM
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I'll be good. only need the tiniest mod. And this tire feels SO good /me preps his scissors
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Old 08-09-12, 07:34 PM
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Are the river trails still an awesome place to ride in Wichita Ks? I've had so much fun there

There was this motorcycle shop on the south side of town... East of SE blvd between wichita and derby. Had a friend that lived near there... We would park our vehicles and unload on the west side of the street along the RR tracks. AND GO RIDE. Does that still happen?? This is like a decade and a half or more years ago....

Last edited by spldart; 08-09-12 at 07:40 PM.
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Old 08-09-12, 08:25 PM
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God I love the smell of fresh tires... Car's, Sportbikes, Dirtbikes and MTB Bikes
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Old 08-09-12, 09:30 PM
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Originally Posted by spldart View Post
Are the river trails still an awesome place to ride in Wichita Ks? I've had so much fun there

There was this motorcycle shop on the south side of town... East of SE blvd between wichita and derby. Had a friend that lived near there... We would park our vehicles and unload on the west side of the street along the RR tracks. AND GO RIDE. Does that still happen?? This is like a decade and a half or more years ago....
Small world. (Warning: entire post totally off-topic.)

There were two shops there, Motorsports Honda-Kawasaki and Jim's Imports (Yamaha). Jim went belly up I would say 20 years ago and it was re-opened a year later, still Yamaha, under a new name. That place lasted about 5 years and now it's a .. I think a tractor store. Motorsports Honda is still there.

The place you're talking about to ride was called "Boeing Hills" when I was kid 30 years ago. We rode dirtbikes out there a ton. Then they started clamping down on it bigtime, and they bulldozed about half of it. But there's still a few trails back in there, and I don't know if anyone rides them but I haven't because it's not easy or legal to get back in there now.

The main MTB trail in Wichita is Miller's Meadow. Pretty cool place, considering it's on flat land-- they did some cool stuff criss-crossing a mostly dry creekbed. There are a variety of bike paths, about 50-60 miles' worth around town but not completely linked together.

Anyway...
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Old 08-10-12, 12:34 PM
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Originally Posted by spldart View Post
God I love the smell of fresh tires... Car's, Sportbikes, Dirtbikes and MTB Bikes
You would love our garage this week, we have new 18" Wrangler's on the SUV.
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Old 08-10-12, 01:49 PM
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I ended up taking a hammer and a drift and putting a little dent in one of the small braces that reinforces the swing arm. I'd say it's 1mm in depth. Worked like a charm.
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Old 08-10-12, 01:50 PM
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Originally Posted by spldart View Post
I ended up taking a hammer and a drift and putting a little dent in one of the small braces that reinforces the swing arm. I'd say it's 1mm in depth. Worked like a charm.


Nicely done. Of course... had you overdone it... you don't want to know how thin that tubing is.
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Old 08-13-12, 10:20 PM
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I ended up carving the tread on the rear... Outside edges... To clear the swingarm and the aftermarket kickstand. I still hit at the center of the tread but wear will soon correct that... Maybe . Tires are VERY good at tracking offroad and behave onroad. Most impressive... small gravel and sand... These things outperform ANYTHING i have ridden in 26 or 29 sand and light gravel/loose dirt. But..... On hard pack and pave... not the fastest but faster than the originals... And they last longer than the originals by a long shot... At 50 miles cannot see any wear. Original rear wore thread bare at 180 mi. Bontrager on par with kenda 898 on the long lasting measure.
Oh... the carving of the rear outside knobs did effect street cornerning. Kinda scary leaning in at high speed. I need something with a tiny bit more hard pack/ street performance but close to these monsters off road.

PS: I'm prolly gonna wear these @$^*#%^* out before I consider my next set. They feel interesting. Wanna get some real experience with them.
Have liners but gonna add slime tubes sitting behind me soon.
Stupid bike's bearing cup thingy on crank side already backed out. Adjusted 3 times before I realized... Stupid cheap bike. Anywho... I already know dead crankset bearings are an issue with this bike so dismantled, removed caged
bearings, clean everything, repack - freeballing replacement ball bearings from vxb bearings, readjust/torque using polylube 1000.

Edit: OMFG these 29er FR3's are awesome in the sloppy wet! Anyone in the H-town area knows this weekend was just wet as 'you know what' These tires rode true through all of it. Not as fast as I wanted but wow! They do perform!
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