11 - 11/10/2019 13:17:15

Taiwanese tire giant MAXXIS have become an integral part of the bicycle world. MAXXIS are one of the most widely specced tire brands in the high-end eMTB sector. Contrary to popular belief, there is actually no technical difference between tires with a white or yellow MAXXIS logo. The former is only available to OEM customers such as bike brands, while the latter is what you can buy yourself from the shops. For years, MAXXIS have consistently been delivering high-performance products, making a name for themselves as the go-to brand for a lot of riders. But the rest of the industry hasn’t been sleeping and MAXXIS face some steep competition. Here you’ll find everything you need about mtb tires: The best eMTB tire – … and why there’s actually no such thing googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('div-gpt-ad-1408638783102-0'); }); Casing MAXXIS have a lot of different tyre constructions to choose from. The EXO, EXO+ and DoubleDown casings are particularly interesting for most riders, but even the heavier and more stable Downhill carcass may be a viable option for aggressive use on the rear wheel. EXO+ is the latest casing in MAXXIS’ portfolio and promises to close the massive gap between the EXO and DoubleDown versions. EXO The EXO casing is MAXXIS’ lightest option, making it suitable for less demanding, longer distance riding. The fabric of the carcass is reinforced with an additional layer in the sidewall to protect against cuts. The EXO insert extends from the tire bead to the middle of the sidewall. It is less puncture prone than Schwalbe’s Snakeskin carcass though it still folds too easily in corners. As a result, it makes little sense for riders over 90 kg, especially on the rear wheel. EXO+ EXO+ closes the huge gap between the lightweight EXO and the heavy DoubleDown casings. In terms of weight, the new EXO+ carcass is only slightly heavier than the EXO model. In addition to the EXO insert in the sidewall, MAXXIS use their SilkShield liner which spans bead to bead to cover the entire surface of the tire, offering increased pinch flat protection. In reality, the EXO+ design isn’t quite sturdy enough and heavier, more aggressive riders will still have to run high tire pressures to avoid puncturing the EXO+ carcass. We didn’t notice any major performance leaps compared to EXO with regards to cornering stability and damping behaviour on the trail either. All in all, the performance of the EXO+ is significantly closer to the EXO version than the Doubledown, although that also means it’s quite a lightweight option. Doubledown The DoubleDown carcass is every Enduro racer’s preferred option. Pinch flat protection is second only to Schwalbe’s Super Gravity models and the tire damping and the cornering stability are almost at the level of a downhill specific casing. Unfortunately, the weight is up there too. Fitting a DoubleDown tire on the rear is particularly worthwhile for heavier riders, and when combined with an EXO+ front tire your complete setup will still be relatively light. The tubeless DoubleDown carcass seats and inflates easily, and seals relatively well even without tubeless sealant. Downhill The Downhill casing has already proven itself thousands of times on the World Cup race circuit. MAXXIS’ heaviest casing delivers excellent damping with the best pinch flat protection in the whole test field. Particularly aggressive riders who ride a lot of fast, rocky trails can get some peace of mind with the downhill casing. For the majority of riders under 100 kg, the downhill casing is completely over-the-top on an eMTB. The rolling resistance and weight are just way too high. Rubber compounds For their high-end tires, MAXXIS have focussed on triple-compound blends. The 3C MaxxGrip and 3C MaxxTerra compounds are particularly suitable for use on eMTBs. MAXXIS also use a dual compound for some of their rear-specific tires. DualCompound MAXXIS’ dual compound is only suitable for a rear tire of an eMTB. The compound is relatively hard, rolls super fast on any surface and wears quite slowly but doesn’t offer much traction on the climbs either. These tires are easy on your wallet, especially if you tend to ride on steep and rocky terrain. However, the compound lacks grip for use as a front tire, especially in wet conditions. Here, the DualCompound doesn’t perform well enough either on the centre tread or on the shoulder knobs. 3C MaxxTerra 3C MaxxTerra is MAXXIS’ intermediate triple compound. For most riders, it will be the go-to option for both the front and rear wheels. The low rolling resistance of the centre knobs is nice to have on the climbs and on moderately inclined flowing trails. The compound of the shoulder knobs on the front tire could be a little softer if you want that extra bit of grip for really hard eMTB use. Nonetheless, the 3C MaxxTerra compound offers the ideal compromise between longevity, grip and cushioning. Most bike brands agree, fitting tires with the 3C MaxxTerra compound on the majority of their builds. 3C MaxxGrip Grip, grip, and more grip: this aptly describes MAXXIS’ softest triple compound. Actually, it should be called 3G. On the brakes, in corners, in dusty or wet conditions as well as on hard-packed ground, MAXXIS 3C MaxxGrip tires will find something to hold on to. The soft rubber compound offers a ton of cushioning too. The knobs are so soft in warm conditions that small stones stick to them and get flung up against the frame. Of course, that much grip comes at the expense of rolling resistance. If you want to beat your buddies to the top of the mountain, you’ll have no chance with the 3C MaxxGrip compound. Inevitably, MAXXIS’ harder compounds wear much slower than 3C MaxxGrip. Nevertheless, the soft compound lasts long enough for several bike park visits without having to be replaced every two days. Our top choice for the front. Tread pattern No other tire brand has as many mountain bike tires on offer as MAXXIS. Besides tires for very specific conditions, they also have a huge range of all-round options to choose from. From fast rolling XC tires to super grippy mud tires, MAXXIS have it all. HighRoller II The second generation of the High Roller has been on the market for several years now. It performs particularly well on loose ground and in wet conditions. The open tread pattern with large gaps between the knobs ensures good self-cleaning properties. The relatively narrow but tall shoulder knobs cut into soft ground on off-camber sections or corners, but they are relatively soft and fold easily in berms or on hard ground. For the centre knobs, MAXXIS have tapered off the leading edge, which is claimed to offer a significant reduction in rolling resistance. Despite their width, the centre knobs don’t deliver the best braking traction due to their low profile height. The lack of transition from the centre to the shoulder knobs means that you’ll have to aggressively lean the bike into corners to maintain grip, which can prove a bit of a challenge for beginners. But master the technique and the High Roller II is capable of generating an incredible amount of traction in the corners. Minion DHF There are two different versions of the MAXXIS Minion. However, the Minion DHF isn’t necessarily only for the front. It also performs very well on the rear wheel of an eMTB. We find the rounded shape of this large-volume tire easier to lean into the corners than the DHR II. The 2.5″ wide version is our favourite, which is quite a bit bulkier than the 2.4″ Minion DHR II.The super wide 2.8” version offers even more grip, but it’s only available in the light EXO casing. This means you have to pump it up so hard that you can’t enjoy any of the plus-size benefits, otherwise, it’s too puncture prone and feels vague in the corners. Apart from that, the Minion DHF offers a lot of braking traction thanks to its massive centre knobs. Minion DHR II The Minion DHR II was once developed as a rear-specific downhill tire. Since then it’s established itself as an excellent all-round tire and an absolute favourite of our editorial team, whether on the front, rear, or both. No other tire in MAXXIS’ portfolio comes in as many variations. You can choose from almost every imaginable size, casing and rubber compound. It’s got the exact same shoulder knobs as the Minion DHF, which is one of the reasons it’s so popular. They are so wide and well supported that they’re almost impossible to fold, making the handling of the Minion DHR II very direct through berms and on hard ground. It also comes in the WT (Wide Trail) version with a profile that’s been specially optimised for rim widths between 30 and 35 mm. The profile of the WT version is slightly more angular compared to the regular Minion DHF, so its shoulder knobs offer increased traction on loose ground. However, soft forest loam is not the Minion’s forte: it performs best on loose gravel and slippery bike park tracks. Minion SS The Minion SS is MAXXIS semi-slick option for the rear wheel. And it really is only for the rear wheel! As long as the trail is dry, the minimal centre tread delivers plenty of braking traction. However, on deep damp soil, this semi-slick tread no longer performs well. This is the trade-off that you’ll have to accept in favour of rolling resistance. The design of the shoulder knobs has been taken from the classic Minion and performs correspondingly well in loose gravel corners as well as berms. Contrary to what its looks might suggest, the transition from the centre to the shoulder knobs is very smooth. We would like to see MAXXIS add a few more variations to this model, especially in the 29″ size. Aggressor The name says it all. The MAXXIS Aggressor could hardly be more knobbly. Interestingly, it still rolls very well on the climbs, due to the arrangement of the centre knobs that form a tightly spaced tread pattern. As a result, the Aggressor with its grippy shoulder knobs is an ideal choice for a fast rolling rear tire on an eMTB for longer rides and trails. Paired with a grippy front tire (a Minion, for example) it’ll also make for a good companion on alpine adventures that involve a lot of climbing. It is only available in the harder dual rubber compound, which is absolutely sufficient for the rear in dry conditions. A good choice for budget conscious riders. Shorty The MAXXIS Shorty is a semi-aggressive mud tire that performs even in the most challenging conditions. Compared to the WETSCREAM, MAXXIS’ full-on mud tire, the knobs on the Shorty are somewhat shorter, which makes it usable as a front tire in dry conditions too. With regards to self-cleaning, it’s the best MAXXIS tire in the test. It manages to find traction on wet roots, off-camber sections and steep greasy downhills. The rolling resistance is a bit too much to be used on the rear, so front wheel only! We would have liked some more options, such as a DoubleDown version with the 3C MaxxGrip compound. The Shorty is a good option for those who regularly ride their bike in the winter, where we would go for the 3C MaxxTerra compound. ASSEGAI The MAXXIS ASSEGAI was designed by downhill legend Greg Minnaar. He combined all the positive qualities of the MAXXIS tires he has ridden in the past to create his perfect tire. The shoulder knobs are an interesting mixture of the HighRoller II and Aggressor. They dig into soft ground while offering a lot of support in berms. The centre tread consists of a single large central knob alternating with two smaller knobs. Braking traction is second to none, and it’ll hold its line even during hard braking manoeuvres on off-camber sections. You’ll quickly notice that the ASSEGAI was designed as a downhill tire when you feel its rolling resistance. Nevertheless, it is now available in all the lighter casing options as well, making it a great choice as a front tire on an eMTB. Our recommendations Grip (f/r): ASSEGAI, 3C MaxxGrip, DoubleDown – Minion DHR II, 3C MaxxTerra, DoubleDown All-round (f/r): Minion DHR II 3C MaxxTerra EXO+ – Minion DHR II, 3C MaxxTerra DoubleDown Fast rolling (f/r): Minion DHR II, 3C MaxxTerra, EXO – Aggressor, DualCompound, EXO For more information head to maxxis.com Our big E-MOUNTAINBIKE group test at a glance Here you’ll find everything you need about mtb tires: The best eMTB tire – … and why there’s actually no such thing All the models in test Click here for Continental Click here for Kenda Click here for MAXXIS Click here for Michelin Click here for Schwalbe Click here for WTB Der Beitrag MAXXIS E‑Mountainbike Tires in Review erschien zuerst auf E-MOUNTAINBIKE Magazine.

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E-Mountainbike Magazine
7 - 11/10/2019 13:17:15

French megabrand Michelin is the second biggest tire manufacturer in the world, though bicycle tires make up only a small part of the business. However, their bicycle tires no doubt profit from the rubber know-how they’ve gained in the automobile sector: several EWS teams are having a lot of success on Michelin tires and the brand is making a comeback in the downhill scene as well, though we’ve only seen prototype models so far. But don’t worry, Michelin haven’t forgotten about eMTBers. Here you’ll find everything you need about mtb tires: The best eMTB tire – … and why there’s actually no such thing googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('div-gpt-ad-1408638783102-0'); }); Casing Michelin have three different casings available for eMTBs. You won’t be able to mix and match Michelin’s different carcasses as easily as you can with Schwalbe or MAXXIS, as some casings are only available with selected models. For example, the front Enduro tire is only available with the heavier Gravity Shield casing. Trail Shield Trail Shield tires are made specifically for long rides. They feature a three-ply casing reinforced with a thin layer of additional puncture protection. Trail Shield tires are amongst the lightest available, with only Kenda and Continental offering a lighter option. With regards to puncture protection, they offer about the same level of puncture resistance as MAXXIS’ EXO+ tires, which makes Trail Shield a viable option for the front wheel on more demanding terrain. It’s a shame Michelin offer so few models with this construction. Gravity Shield The name says it all: Gravity Shield tires are made for those who follow the call of gravity and like to go as fast as possible on the descents. Michelin combine a three-ply 60 TPI casing with another three-ply 33 TPI casing for added reinforcement. The thick threads of the lower TPI casing do push up the weight of the tire, but they offer enough support for you to run lower tire pressures without having to worry about them squirming when you corner. You’ll rarely have to deal with cut sidewalls on rocky trails either. Pinch flat protection with Gravity Shield tires is better than Kenda’s EMC casing, but not quite as good as MAXXIS’ DoubleDown or Schwalbe’s Super Gravity casing, though they are a bit lighter. Gravity Shield mit Pinch Protection Michelin’s Pinch Protection consists of an additional layer in the sidewall of the carcass. Pinch Protection is supposed to do just that, offering added protection against pinch flats, and like MAXXIS’ Apex casing, it also supports and stabilises the side walls. It doesn’t come with a significant weight penalty while offering a considerable improvement in puncture protection. It performs significantly better than MAXXIS’ DoubleDown and is almost on the same level as Schwalbe’s Super Gravity casing. Considering the ratio of weight to puncture resistance, Michelin’s Gravity Shield combined with Pinch Protection is right up there amongst the best. Unfortunately, you’ll only find this casing on the fast rolling Force Enduro model. Rubber compounds Michelin know a thing or two about rubber thanks to many years of experience in the automobile industry, but you could be forgiven for thinking you need a degree to understand the names of the different compounds. You’ve got everything from single to triple compounds on offer. Gum-X2D Gum-X2D is Michelin’s dual compound rubber. You’ll mostly find it on the fast rolling Force and Rock’R2 Enduro tires. The centre knobs are made of relatively hard rubber for improved durability and faster rolling. The shoulder knobs are made of a softer rubber compound so you’ll have enough traction for the corners. Combined with the tread patterns that it’s available in, Gum-X2D is only suitable for hard and dry ground, as the hard rubber compound lacks the necessary grip and cushioning needed for muddy conditions. However, the rubber does offer a lot of cornering stability and precision when you’re riding on hard-packed, dry trails. Gum-X3D Michelin call their triple compound Gum-X3D. As is typical in a triple compound tire, the composition starts with the hardest compound as the base, the intermediate compound for the centre tread and the softest compound for the shoulder knobs. The cornering traction of the Gum-X3D is excellent: the shoulder knobs are very grippy and also manage to offer a lot of support. Gum-X3D tires also roll fast, which makes them equally suitable as a rear tire. While the centre tread does last relatively long, the shoulder knobs lose their shape rather quickly. The braking traction provided by the centre knobs is good enough for wet conditions too. Magi-X Magi-X and Magi-X2 are Michelins softest compounds. The Magi-X compound is the older version and is only used on their Mud Enduro tire. Magi-X2 is claimed to roll better, which is why you’ll find it on the Wild Enduro front tire.Regardless of whether you’re riding wet roots or rock slabs, this compound offers grip in every situation. However, a lot of grip on a Michelin tire goes hand in hand with high rolling resistance and a short life span. We would only recommend the Magi-X2 compound for the front where it will offer even more grip than the Gum-X3D Wild Enduro. Tread pattern Every Michelin tread pattern is designed for a specific job and where it will perform at its best. However, the Wild range is the most versatile in Michelin’s portfolio. Wild Enduro Front You’ll recognise the Wild Enduro Front by its huge shoulder knobs. It’s all about generating maximum grip. The aggressive, open tread pattern digs into soft ground and hardly gets clogged up with mud thanks to its good self-cleaning properties. With the Wild Enduro Front, you’ll always remain in control and stay on the exact line you choose. If you’re looking for maximum grip on the descents, you could also use it as a rear tire, but we’d recommend you go with the slightly harder Gum-X3D version. For a fast-rolling setup, you could combine the Wild Enduro Front with the Wild Enduro Rear or the Force Enduro. Wild Enduro Rear The Wild Enduro Rear is very similar to the Wild Enduro Front, although the knobs aren’t quite as tall and aggressive for decreased rolling resistance. Fitted on the rear wheel, things do indeed get wild. The back end slides out quite easily but it’ll let you regain control just as quickly, allowing you to drift around corners at speed. You won’t only look like you’re pinning it, you’ll also have a lot of fun. If you want to stick to one tire combination on your Enduro bike, the Wild Enduro Front and Rear are a very good choice. Wild AM The Wild AM is based on the Wild Enduro Rear. They have very similar tread patterns and the handling is correspondingly similar. The centre knobs are slightly shorter, making them very fast rolling but without compromising braking traction too much. They’re a good option for the front and rear wheel of a Trail bike, even in wet conditions. However, if you want maximum climbing efficiency, you’d be better off with a faster rolling tire on the rear. The Wild AM is a good all-round tire, delivering a convincing performance on every kind of terrain. E-Wild The Michelin E-Wild features the same tread pattern as the Wild Enduro Front, though the eMTB specific version is a lot wider, available exclusively in 2.6” and 2.8” widths. While the tread pattern is the same for the front and back tires, the casing and rubber compounds have been optimised to meet front and rear specific demands. Thanks to an additional layer of reinforcment, the rear tire offers improved puncture protection. That said, the front tire is plenty robust as it is and we seldom suffered punctures at either end. Just like the Wild Enduro, the E-Wild performed well in all conditions and never lacked grip, especially on soft ground. Climbing traction is excellent too, making easy work of some of the steepest climbs. However, the tracking and precision is already a little vague on the 2.6” model and is unable to keep up with the direct feel of Continental’s Der Baron 2.6 Projekt. Unfortunately that means that both the 2.6” and 2.8” tires squirm through compressions and berms. Force Enduro The Force Enduro is Michelins rear-specific tire. With its shallow tread, the rolling resistance is kept to a minimum, making long, arduous climbs that much more bearable. The centre knobs are so small that they only offer minimal braking traction. In wet conditions, that’s exacerbated and the Force Enduro feels like you’re on skis, especially if you try braking. On hard ground, the shoulder knobs provide sufficient cornering grip and stability to be paired with a Wild Enduro up front. On the rear, the shoulder knobs won’t fold and the tire slides out in a controlled and predictable way. It is for good reason that Michelin use their Gravity Shield casing together with Pinch Protection on the Force Enduro. Mud Enduro The Mud Enduro has got the most aggressive knobs that we’ve ever seen on an Enduro tire. Made specifically for wet, muddy, forest sludge, the open tread pattern, the long knobs and the narrow carcass cut into the ground until they find traction. You won’t have a chance with these on hard surfaces. If you’re looking for a mud tire to use in the summer when the trails are covered in a deep layer of dust, you can always cut the knobs down a bit to make it rideable. Michelin have taken a cue from the pros for the production model, moulding in “cut along the dotted line” markings on the knobs. Once cut down, the Mud Enduro rolls significantly better and it becomes a lot more precise on hard ground. Still, you should only ever use it on the front. There, the Mud Enduro is an excellent choice for steep terrain in the winter, or for particularly dry and dusty summers. Rock’R2 The Rock’R2 is one of Michelin’s most durable tires, made specifically for hard packed, rocky and rough trails. With its massive knobs and deep siping, it can find purchase on the rockiest of terrain. There was hardly any other tire in the test field capable of generating as much cornering and braking traction on hard ground. The centre knobs are arranged lengthways and sideways in an alternating pattern, keeping the rolling resistance acceptable. However, with the tread as closely spaced as it is, it does pack with mud more easily than the Wild Enduro. The shoulder knobs behave similarly to the MAXXIS Minion. They offer enough support in berms without squirming and deliver enough traction on gravel. We’ve never experienced pinch flats on the Rock’R2, despite being available only with the Gravity Shield casing. Our recommendations Grip (f/r): Wild Enduro Front, Magic-X / Wild Enduro Front, Gum-X All-round (f/r): Wild Enduro Front – Wild Enduro Rear Touring (f/r): E-Wild Front 2,6” / E-Wild Rear 2,6” For more information head to michelin.com Our big E-MOUNTAINBIKE group test at a glance Here you’ll find everything you need about mtb tires: The best eMTB tire – … and why there’s actually no such thing All the models in test Click here for Continental Click here for Kenda Click here for MAXXIS Click here for Michelin Click here for Schwalbe Click here for WTB Der Beitrag Michelin E‑Mountainbike Tires in Review erschien zuerst auf E-MOUNTAINBIKE Magazine.

Posted by
E-Mountainbike Magazine
8 - 11/10/2019 13:17:15

Schwalbe are sure to have the right tire for your bike. Offering a huge selection with everything from commuter all the way to hardcore downhill tires, the traditional German brand has got the right tool for the job. Across all the mountain bike tyres we tested, the Schwalbe options consistently measured wider than their stated size. We found that a 2.35″ Schwalbe tire was usually just as wide as a 2.4″ from other brands Here you’ll find everything you need about mtb tires: The best eMTB tire – … and why there’s actually no such thing googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('div-gpt-ad-1408638783102-0'); }); Casing During our testing, we rode four different casings: Downhill, Super Gravity, Apex and Snakeskin TLE. These are used on tires on Schwalbe’s flagship “Evolution Line” range. We would only recommend the thin SnakeSkin casing for the front of your eMTB. For the rear, we would either go for the extra sturdy Super Gravity or the somewhat lighter Apex casing. Unfortunately, the Apex casing is only available on Schwalbe’s 2.6” models. SnakeSkin TLE Yes, Schwalbe offer even lighter casings, but Snakeskin TLE definitely marks the lower limit of durability for eMTB riders. The additional SnakeSkin layer on the outside of the sidewall is designed to protect against cuts. Like the heavier models, the Snakeskin carcass also manages to stay inflated quite well without tubeless sealant. However, the casing is simply too thin for demanding trail use. Riders weighing more than 80 kg are bound to suffer pinch flats on the rear wheel. On the other hand, lightweight riders will likely benefit from the reduced rolling resistance and weight and should get along well with the Snakeskin TLE casing up front. Apex The Apex casing is exclusive to the wide tires in Schwalbe’s portfolio, appearing only on their 2.6″ and 2.8″ models. It uses a reinforced insert between the layers of the two-ply carcass to strengthen the sidewall, increase puncture resistance and improve lateral stability in corners. If you do suffer a pinch flat, the fatal cut will usually puncture the tread, while the hole in the sidewall typically remains small enough for tubeless sealant to plug. Apex casings sit in between the often too thin TLE model and Super Gravity casing. Unfortunately, the limited range of tire widths available doesn’t always make it a viable alternative. Super Gravity Schwalbe have updated their Super Gravity casing to make it even more robust. In terms of resistance to pinch flats, the Super Gravity casing is hard to beat, unless you want to go with one of the even heavier downhill models. The cornering stability at low pressures is great too. That protection and stability are achieved by combining a SnakeSkin layer with an Apex insert and a four-ply casing. With so much additional material you can imagine that it’s no lightweight, weighing more than most of its competitors. Nonetheless, we would always advise riders over 85 kg to go with the Super Gravity casing on the rear of their eMTB. Downhill If you order downhill tires from Schwalbe you’ll get them in a huge box – the tyres can’t be packed smaller due to the non-folding bead. The six-ply casing offers the ultimate puncture protection, but the stiff wire bead means that fitting the tires can be quite a chore. Compared to the Super Gravity casing, the rolling resistance is a lot higher too. Despite the stiff bead, the downhill tires will stay inflated without sealant. Although it rarely happens, we have managed to pinch flat one of Schwalbe’s downhill tires. If you need even more puncture protection, we recommend trying MAXXIS’ downhill tires. Rubber compounds For the high-end Evolution range, tires are offered with one of Schwalbe’s range of four Addix rubber compounds. The hardest and fastest-rolling Addix compound, Addix Speed, doesn’t offer enough traction for eMTBs. Instead, you should be looking at either the Speedgrip, Soft or Ultra Soft compounds. The rubber compound is easy to distinguish by the coloured stripe in the tread. ADDIX Speedgrip Addix Speedgrip has one huge advantage over the softer compounds. The blue-striped tires are a lot harder wearing and roll faster. If you typically only ride in good weather anyway, the Addix Speedgrip compound is a good option for longer lasting tires that’ll go easy on your wallet. Up front, Addix Speedgrip is for skilled riders and those with a hankering for endless gravel climbs only. Personally, we never use a Speedgrip tire on the front, preferring something with more grip. ADDIX Soft The Addix Soft triple compound is Schwalbe’s universal blend and performs well on almost any bike. It offers a good compromise between grip and rolling resistance on an eMTB for both the front and rear wheels, and could happily be a universal option for longer rides or general riding. Incidentally, the rolling resistance is comparable to MAXXIS’ 3C MaxxTerra compound. If you want a compound with which you’ll be able to enjoy the trails all year round in all conditions, Schwalbe’s orange-striped tire is a good choice. Whether on the front or the rear: Addix Soft always works well. ADDIX Ultra Soft The downhillers darling: the purple-striped Addix Ultra Soft is the softest rubber compound and is primarily used for Schwalbe’s downhill tires. It is also available on some Super Gravity tires, where it is ideally suited as a front tire for really challenging trails. In terms of grip, it’s hard to beat in the wet, but the rolling resistance is correspondingly high. An Addix Ultra Soft tire on the rear of your bike will quickly drain your battery and the tread won’t last long either. Tread pattern The range of Schwalbe tires is huge. However, bicycle brands almost exclusively spec one of three Schwalbe models: Magic Mary, Hans Dampf or Nobby Nic. Alongside these all-rounders, Schwalbe also have more specialised tires such as Dirty Dan for deep mud or the Rock Razor for extremely dry conditions. The Eddy Current was developed specifically with eMTBs in mind and features front- and rear-specific tread patterns. Magic Mary Magic Mary is a favourite amongst gravity riders. The aggressive tread pattern with its massive shoulder knobs offers excellent cornering grip on soft ground. The braking traction and the self-cleaning properties are good and compared to the Dirty Dan it doesn’t squirm on rocky terrain or hard-packed trails either. With the latest generation Super Gravity construction, Schwalbe have solved the problems of the past where the shoulder knobs quickly got torn off the tire. Thumbs up! It also makes for an excellent front tire on longer rides. Hans Dampf The Hans Dampf is Schwalbe’s all-round tire. The closely spaced tread pattern provides a good compromise between rolling resistance and traction on technical climbs. It works well as a mile-muncher on both the front and back of your eMTB. The pronounced transition knobs create a round profile that makes cornering predictable at every angle. This tire doesn’t track quite as well as the Magic Mary, but that makes it easier to drift in a controlled manner. In berms, the shoulder knobs withstand the forces of the tightest corners, which makes Hans Dampf an interesting rear wheel option for bike park rats. By the way, the tread pattern is bidirectional, so if you want to save some money you can turn it around after a few weeks, giving you fresh, unworn edges that bite into the ground for that new tyre feeling. Nobby Nic The Nobby Nic starts to feel out of its depth just when the downhill fun begins. That’s also reflected in the available casings, as you won’t find any Super Gravity or Downhill models here. The profile and height of the shoulder knobs are similar to the Hans Dampf, but it rolls even faster thanks to a more closely spaced centre tread. Doesn’t that make it a good rear tire? Yes, but only the more robust 2.6″ Apex version. Eddy Current Front Forget everything you’ve ever been told about tire pressure. The extremely robust Eddy Current performs just fine if you feel like experimenting with pressures below 1 bar, front and rear, thanks to the sturdy, supportive, heavy Super Gravity casing and thick layers of rubber. There is a big difference between the tread patterns of the front and rear tires. The Eddy Current Front was designed to offer two things: cornering and braking traction. To achieve this, Schwalbe lengthened the centre knobs for improved tracking and added big shoulder knobs to dig into corners. However, they’re not quite as aggressive as the Magic Mary. The wide 2.6” version works well on gravel roads and rocky trails but doesn’t grip quite as well on soft forest ground as the narrower 29 x 2.4” model. We prefer the precision and direct feel of the narrower model, and we never found it lacking in grip. Eddy Current Rear Schwalbe’s design team took their inspiration for the tread of the Eddy Current Rear from motocross tires. The massive centre knobs dig into loose ground like spades, making the Eddy Current a true climbing specialist particularly suited to steep, loose climbs where it never seems to lose traction. The braking traction is hard to beat too. However, the 27.5 x 2.8” version is a little too vague in corners, which is why we prefer the narrower 29 x 2.6” version and we hope that Schwalbe will soon be making a narrower option for the “smaller” wheels as well. There is one thing the front and rear tires have in common: they’re heavy. The Eddy Current is overkill for light trails and you’ll only need it for the most aggressive type of riding. Dirty Dan As the name implies, you’re meant to get dirty with the Dirty Dan. The aggressive and widely-spaced knobs on this mud tire dig into soft ground but effectively shed mud that could bring your ride to a grinding halt. The tire offers a lot of traction and precision on wet roots too. However, as soon as you run into rock slabs or hard ground, you have to be cautious. The tall shoulder and centre knobs deform quite a lot the handling becomes vague. Rolling resistance is very high too, so we would only recommend this tire for the front. Rock Razor Rear wheel only! With this semi-slick tire, you’ll fly up the climbs. Don’t be fooled by the minimalistic centre tread – on hard ground, the large contact area generates a lot of traction. The shoulder knobs are slightly smaller and flatter than the Magic Mary but still grip well in the corners. Their smaller size means they’re also less prone to squirming in berms. Leaning the tire onto the shoulder knobs is consistent and controllable thanks to the tiny transition knobs. However, even the best riders will end up fighting the Rock Razor in muddy conditions. It only makes sense you if you live in a dry climate or regularly swap your tires to suit the conditions. Another point of criticism is that the 29″ model is only available in the fragile Snakeskin version. Our choice of Schwalbe tire combinations: All-round (f/r): Magic Mary, ADDIX Soft, Super Gravity – Hans Dampf, ADDIX Soft, Super Gravity Grip (f/r): Eddy Current Front 2,4”, ADDIX Soft, Super Gravity / Eddy Current Rear 2,6”, ADDIX Soft, Super Gravity Fast rolling (f/r): Hans Dampf, ADDIX Soft, TLE –Hans Dampf, ADDIX Soft, Super Gravity For more information head to schwalbe.com Our big E-MOUNTAINBIKE group test at a glance Here you’ll find everything you need about mtb tires: The best eMTB tire – … and why there’s actually no such thing All the models in test Click here for Continental Click here for Kenda Click here for MAXXIS Click here for Michelin Click here for Schwalbe Click here for WTB Der Beitrag Schwalbe E‑Mountainbike Tires in Review erschien zuerst auf E-MOUNTAINBIKE Magazine.

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E-Mountainbike Magazine
9 - 11/10/2019 13:17:15

Wilderness Trail Bikes hail from the birthplace of mountain bikes: California. WTB’s mission has always been to produce reliable and high-quality mountain bike components. Recently, they have done a lot of work on updating their tire range, cranking out several new designs in a very short space of time and optimising and improving some of their existing favourites. While they don’t offer eMTB specific tires we’ll tell you which ones will work best on your eMTB Here you’ll find everything you need about mtb tires: The best eMTB tire – … and why there’s actually no such thing googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('div-gpt-ad-1408638783102-0'); }); Casing The award for the best product names goes to… WTB. While you’ll often feel helplessly lost trying to navigate the unintelligible abbreviations other tire manufacturers use, WTB have somehow been able to express themselves a lot more clearly. They’ve got two casings suitable for eMTBs: Tough and Light. The Light casing features an additional fabric insert named Slash Guard. During fitting, we found that all WTB tires needed at least ⅓ more tubeless sealant to seal properly once seated on the rim. TCS Light Casing mit Slash Guard WTB’s lighter carcass makes for an ideal all-rounder. The Slash Guard is a layer of nylon fabric that is sandwiched in the sidewalls of the casing. The improvement in pinch flat protection compared to WTB’s previous models without the Slash Guard insert is huge. In fact, they’re almost as sturdy as the heavier Tough carcass. While you’re unlikely to suffer a punctured or slashed sidewall, Slash Guard doesn’t do much to improve cornering stability. The tire will squirm at lower tire pressures, especially with heavier riders. TCS Tough Casing WTB’s heaviest carcass is designed for hard trail use. You won’t find a downhill specific tire in the American brand’s catalogue, but most eMTB riders wouldn’t need them anyway. WTB’s heaviest casing is unphased by the kind of impacts that might leave a dent in your rim. The Tough carcass adds twice the layers and protection of the Light version (with the exception of the Slash Guard insert). As a result, the tire stays securely seated on the rim and doesn’t squirm at low tire pressures, remaining predictable and precise through corners. However, the construction adds about 150 g to the tire weight. Rubber compounds WTB’s flagship range features triple-compound constructions. As aptly named as ever, WBT don’t leave you guessing what the TriTec High Grip and TriTec Fast Rolling compounds are for. WTB use a unique moulding method where the hard rubber used for the base also extends into the core of the knobs. This is intended to offer additional support and prevent the knobs from folding, particularly during hard cornering manoeuvres, though we didn’t really find this particularly noticeable for the majority of WTB’s tires tested. Theoretically, this also means that TriTec tires could suddenly become less grippy once the knobs are worn down to the base rubber. However, in practice, during the lifespan of the tires we never encountered this issue. TriTec Fast Rolling The name says it all. For the TriTec Fast Rolling compound, WTB rely on a relatively hard rubber for the centre tread. Rolling resistance is significantly reduced and wear is limited. Fast Rolling is always a good choice for the rear thanks to the very soft shoulder knobs which offer good grip through corners. However, used up front, the level of braking traction is well below that of MAXXIS’ 3C Maxx Terra compound. Pair it with an aggressive tread such as that of the Judge and the hard Fast Rolling compound is still able to deliver enough traction for the front wheel of your eMTB. TriTec High Grip Wet weather, steep climbs or nasty roots: TriTec High Grip is WTB’s answer when you need all the traction you can get. The soft shoulder knobs provide a lot of grip on soft ground, but they aren’t all that well supported on hard ground or with heavy riders. On all the tires we tested, with the exception of the Trailboss, the shoulder knobs ended up folding when pushed hard. The soft compound offers good braking traction in the wet. While the rubber edges of the High Grip centre knobs don’t get torn off from braking, they do wear down relatively quickly. Tread pattern Before WTB’s tire range got updated, you would have been somewhat limited for choice with a lot of the more aggressive Enduro tires not available in a 29″ size. However, last year WTB expanded the range of available sizes of their two classics, the TrailBoss and Vigilante. Their mud tire, the Warden was replaced by the brand new Verdict Wet, and is now also offered as an all-round version, the Verdict, which is designed with shorter knobs. Vigilante The Vigilante is an old acquaintance in the WTB lineup. This all-round tire is ideal for both the front and rear. On the 2.5″ wide model, the offset shoulder knobs end up more on the top than the side, giving the tire a rather square profile. On soft ground, the long shoulder knobs easily find grip. As you lean the bike over slightly, the inwardly offset shoulder knobs dig in, providing the transition to the alternating outward pointing shoulder knobs, which offer all the grip you need as you tip your bike properly into the corner. Unfortunately, all that traction is lost in hard berms as the knobs fold, though they do this in a predictable way, which can be a lot of fun if you enjoy drifting. The long knobs even offer a lot of grip in muddy conditions, but they reach their limits when it gets really thick and sticky. Trail Boss Steep climbs, dry hard-packed berms and rock slabs are the terrain the Trail Boss is made for. The knobs of this fast rolling tire don’t fold and the handling is always precise and stable. With its shallow tread profile and many small knobs, it behaves similarly to Schwalbe’s Hans Dampf. The knobs are evenly distributed, allowing you to transition from the centre to the shoulder knobs without any loss of grip. When the Trail Boss does slide out, it’s quickly able to regain control, with an edge of at least one the knobs quickly finding grip somewhere. As a fast-rolling combination on your Trail bike, it works both up front and on the back. It lacks the braking traction needed up front on really steep Enduro tracks though. As a fast rolling tire, the Trail Boss is best suited for the rear wheel if you want to cover long distances. The braking traction isn’t sufficient to use it as a front tire on demanding terrain. Judge According to WTB, the Judge is a rear tire made for very rough terrain. Whether in the bike park, on super steep downhills tracks or on freshly cut trails, the massive knobs of the Judge will dig into the ground. The centre knobs are chamfered on one side to reduce rolling resistance. However, the Judge is undoubtedly a tire made for descending – climbing is only a means to an end. Though the Judge sheds mud very effectively, the wide gap between the centre and shoulder knobs means you’ll have lean the bike over quite aggressively when going into a corner so that the shoulder knobs dig into the ground. Like the MAXXIS Minion DHR II, the Judge also does very well on the front wheel despite the fact that the tread pattern was designed for the rear. You’ll pay the price only on hard-packed berms. Although the shoulder knobs don’t fold as easily as WTB’s other tires, they bounce back suddenly and uncontrollably as soon as you let off the pressure. Verdict und Verdict Wet Have you ever seen a pro racer riding a mud tire in the middle of summer? When things get particularly dry and dusty, mud tires can actually be very effective. If you go the DIY route, cutting down the knobs by a few millimetres keeps the handling more precise on harder ground. WTB have already done that for you with the Verdict, so you don’t have to. While the Verdict Wet is a true specialist for the worst of the Scottish winter and only works on soft, muddy ground with its super aggressive knobs, the Verdict uses the same tread pattern but with shorter centre knobs, making it much more versatile. Both versions of the Verdict only make sense on the front due to their high rolling resistance. Besides ruts filled with the finest dust, it also performs well in berms, on rocks slabs or on gravel. But it feels most comfortable on fresh forest soil: loam is the Verdict’s preferred terrain. Our WTB combinations: Grip (f/r): Verdict, High Grip, Light + Slash Guard – Judge, Fast Rolling, Tough All-round (f/r): Vigilante, High Grip, Light + Slash Guard – Vigilante, Fast Rolling, Tough Fast rolling (f/r): Vigilante, High Grip, Light + Slash Guard – Trail Boss, Fast Rolling, Light + Slash Guard For more information head to wtb.com Our big E-MOUNTAINBIKE group test at a glance Here you’ll find everything you need about mtb tires: The best eMTB tire – … and why there’s actually no such thing All the models in test Click here for Continental Click here for Kenda Click here for MAXXIS Click here for Michelin Click here for Schwalbe Click here for WTB Der Beitrag WTB E‑Mountainbike Tires in Review erschien zuerst auf E-MOUNTAINBIKE Magazine.

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E-Mountainbike Magazine
371pts
11/10/2019
9 - 11/10/2019 12:51:14

Continental is the second German manufacturer in the test field alongside Schwalbe, but bicycle tires only make up a small part of the huge automotive group’s business. Nevertheless, Continental have a long tradition of making bicycle tires. Models like the Kaiser and rubber such as the BlackChili Compound have garnered almost legendary status amongst riders. All BlackChili Compound tires are hand made in Germany. Unfortunately, we couldn’t test the heavy-duty Downhill Apex casing thoroughly enough due to the lack of availability of most of the models in the range. Here you’ll find everything you need about mtb tires: The best eMTB tire – … and why there’s actually no such thing googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('div-gpt-ad-1408638783102-0'); }); Casing The guys and girls at Continental pay careful attention to weight. ProTection Apex, designed for demanding trails, is the lightest casing amongst the competition. The other carcasses in Continental’s range are also among the lightest in their categories. However, some Continental carcasses require significantly more tubeless sealant than we’re used to, similar to WTB. ProTection The ProTection carcass is Continental’s tire construction for all-round use. A two-ply casing on the sidewalls overlaps an additional layer under the centre tread to form its main structure. An additional layer of puncture protection spans the tire from bead to bead. In terms of weight and rolling resistance, the ProTection carcass leads the way, tied pretty much neck and neck with Kenda’s ATC construction. However, in terms of pinch flat protection, you’ll find it somewhat wanting. If you’re running Continental ProTection tires, you’ll have to watch out for sharp objects when you’re travelling at higher speeds, with protection similar to Schwalbe’s lightweight SnakeSkin TLE carcass. ProTection Apex ProTection Apex is Continental’s second-heaviest carcass. Contrary to common misconception, the Apex carcass (without “ProTection”) is actually Continental’s most durable, pure downhill carcass. Instead, ProTection Apex is specifically designed for use on rough trails. The carcass is made up of two layers of protective fabric that overlap under the tread to add additional protection. As with the construction of the ProTection carcass, a layer of cut-resistant fabric spans the casing from bead to bead. For further reinforcement, Continental rely on an Apex insert sandwiched between the layers of the sidewall, offering increased cornering stability and puncture protection. However, this construction left us wanting more puncture protection on the trail than it could offer. Pinch flats are a common occurrence with ProTection Apex on rocky trails and a rider weight of 85 kg. Rubber compound Continental do not give their customers much choice when it comes to rubber compounds. Their high-end mountain bike tires use the BlackChili Compound, which has a different composition depending on the tire. On some low-end models of the Trail King or Mountain King, Continental also use their harder PureGrip blend. PureGrip PureGrip isn’t quite what the name says. Anyone looking for grippy mountain bike tires from Continental should definitely go for the BlackChili compound instead. The PureGrip compound offers low rolling resistance and durability above all else. In wet conditions, it can’t generate enough grip on the front wheel whether you’re braking or cornering. It can make for a good rear wheel option for long rides in dry and warm conditions if you want to be quicker up the climbs and increase your range. BlackChili Compound Continental will tell you more about the manufacturing process and basic ingredients of their BlackChili compound than the properties of the rubber itself. Depending on the tire and its application, BlackChili differs in its composition with regards to grip, rolling resistance and durability. Continental use BlackChili rubber on some of their road bike tires, but this has completely different properties to the soft rubber used for their downhill tire, Der Kaiser. However, the same tire with the same carcass always has the same BlackChili compound, so you can’t combine the same tread with a softer compound on the front and harder compound on the rear wheel. Tread pattern You have to be a bit careful with Continental’s tread patterns as different tire widths of the same model, sometimes get a completely different tread pattern. The best example of this is Der Baron which looks very different in the 2.6″ width and 2.4” version. You won’t find any front or rear wheel specific tires in Continental’s portfolio either. However, you’ll still be able to combine a grippy tire up front with a fast rolling tire on the rear. Der Kaiser 2.4 Projekt Like to ride Park? Then the Der Kaiser 2.4 Projekt is just the Continental tire for you. The super-wide shoulder knobs are so well supported that they avoid any sort of folding or squirming entirely. Thanks to the angled centre knobs, it also rolls really fast on hard ground as you head for the next jump while the centre tread can still generate enough braking traction on technical descents. Even when you’re on the brakes and approaching a berm sideways, the centre knobs will quickly get the rear wheel back on track. Transitioning from the centre to the shoulder knobs feels similar to the MAXXIS Minion DHR II and requires some skill to lean over onto the tread quickly. The shoulder knobs also grip well on soft ground thanks to thanks to the pronounced inner edge, providing a lot of traction on natural trails. Der Baron 2.4 Projekt The Der Baron 2.4 Projekt is Continental’s tire for natural trails. With its open tread pattern, mud hasn’t got a chance. It feels much more at home on soft forest loam than on hard ground. Here, the compact centre knobs offer a direct feel, but unfortunately, the shoulder knobs suffer through berms or on rock slabs where they feel a little vague. You’ll also notice the open tread pattern when it comes to rolling resistance, which is why we only recommend it for the front for maximum grip and traction. It also didn’t wow us quite like the Der Kaiser while braking. However, rolling the tire from the centre to the shoulder knobs is noticeably easier with a smooth transition between the two. Der Baron 2.6 Projekt Continental are actually a little late to the plus-size party with their Der Baron 2.6. As the latest addition to the family, it’s appeared on the scene almost as the hype has worn off. Although it’s got the same name as the Der Baron 2.4 Projekt, there isn’t much resemblance between the two. The tread profile is a lot shallower and Continental have added an additional row of small centre knobs. The shoulder knobs have also been changed to form an alternating pattern of outward and inward knobs allowing for an easier transition when cornering. It feels like you use the entire surface of the Der Baron’s tread, providing a lot of traction on dry, hard ground. The handling is astoundingly precise for such a large volume tire, but it can’t offer the same amount of grip as its original namesake on natural trails. Trail King The Trail King is Continental’s all-round tire. For demanding trails, we could just about imagine running it on the rear wheel. The standout feature of the Trail King is the relatively flat and widely spaced centre knobs combined with much larger and more closely spaced shoulder knobs. The profile of the Trail King is very round and is correspondingly easy to lean into a corner, similar to Schwalbe’s Hans Dampf. However, its small knobs will never be able to dig into off-camber sections very well. You also have to very careful on the brakes to avoid sliding out. That does mean that it rolls excellently on any surface, but despite the widely spaced centre tread, it doesn’t shed mud well and suddenly loses grip as it clogs up. Mountain King Continental developed the Mountain King for marathon riders, but it can also be used as an even faster rolling alternative to the Trail King on the rear of your eMTB. When we say rear wheel, we mean rear wheel: the Mountain King should never find its way to the front of your bike. Above all, the Mountain King likes dry, hard soil where it offers direct handling and a lot of precision. However, the minimal shoulder knobs will quickly get overwhelmed by open, grassy corners and higher speeds. If you’re going slow in wet conditions, it offers more traction on the brakes than the Trail King and also has better self-cleaning properties. Puncture protection and cushioning are sadly not the strengths of these 2.3″ tires. Our recommendations Grip (f/r): Der Kaiser 2.4 Projekt, BlackChili, ProTection Apex – Der Kaiser 2.4 Projekt, BlackChili, ProTection Apex All-round (f/r): Der Baron 2.4 Projekt, BlackChili, ProTection Apex – Trail King, BlackChili ProTection Apex Fast rolling (f/r): Trail King, BlackChili ProTection Apex – Trail King, BlackChili ProTection Apex For more information head to continental-reifen.de Our big E-MOUNTAINBIKE group test at a glance Here you’ll find everything you need about mtb tires: The best eMTB tire – … and why there’s actually no such thing All the models in test Click here for Continental Click here for Kenda Click here for MAXXIS Click here for Michelin Click here for Schwalbe Click here for WTB Der Beitrag Continental E‑Mountainbike Tires in Review erschien zuerst auf E-MOUNTAINBIKE Magazine.

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E-Mountainbike Magazine
9 - 11/10/2019 12:17:17

While some of the bikes in this group test can be considered XC bikes with big intentions, there’s no hiding the enduro DNA of the Whyte S-120C. With 120 mm travel, it might seem like just another short-travel bike. However, like a shaved lion in a room full of cheetahs, it’s a very different beast indeed. For an overview about the test field click her: The Best Short-Travel Trail Bike – 6 Mountain Bikes in Test Whyte S-120C RS | 120/120 mm | 13.9 kg | € 4,299 googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('div-gpt-ad-1408638783102-0'); }); The RS model denomination has always represented Whyte’s no-frills, no-nonsense, enthusiasts choice when it comes to specification and the S-120C RS is no exception. Everything is picked for functional performance. The suspension, like most bikes in this group test, consists of the lighter 120 mm Fox Float Performance Step-Cast 34 fork with a GRIP damper, combined with a Fox Float DPS Performance shock. The carbon front triangle is mated to an aluminium rear-end which is 1x drivetrain specific. A highlight of the RS spec is the new 12-speed M8100 Shimano XT drivetrain with a 10-51 t cassette. The new four-piston M8120 XT brakes are capable of a tenacious grasp on the 180/180 mm rotors. One interesting addition is the new Bike Yoke Divine dropper post with 160 mm travel (125 mm on the size Small). The cockpit screams enduro with own brand 780 mm bars and a stubby 40 mm stem. The Race Face AR-27 wheels are shod with a Maxxis Forekaster 29×2.35” tire on the front and a Maxxis Ardent 29×2.25” Race on the rear. The Whyte S-120C really shows how potent a 120 mm travel bike can be. We never felt underbiked. Helmet Bell Sixer MIPS Fasthouse | Jersey POC Essential Enduro ¾ Light | Shorts POC Essential Enduro | Gloves POC Resistance Enduro | Knee pads POC VPD System Lite The Whyte S-120C RS in detail Fork Fox Float Performance 34 Step-Cast 120 mm Shock Fox Float DPS Performance 120 mm Brakes Shimano XT M8120 4 Pot 180/180 Drivetrain Shimano XT M8100 Seatpost Bike Yoke Devine 160 mm Stem Whyte Gravity Stem 40 mm Handlebar Whyte 6061 Alloy 780 mm Wheels Raceface AR-27 Tires Maxxis Forekaster 3C Max Speed / Maxxis Ardent Race EXO 2.35″ / 2.25″ Aggressive geometryThe Whyte S-120C features very aggressive geometry. The 65.6° head angle is considerably slacker than all the others in this group test. Under tensionThe Whyte S-120C encourages you to drift and slap the rear end into turns. We had to re-tension the rear wheel several times. Progressive suspensionWhyte have worked hard on their rear suspension kinematics. We like the latest evolution, which is progressive and supportive, suiting the short-travel rocket ethos. All the rangeThe 10-51 t cassette of the new Shimano M8100 XT drivetrain provides more than enough range to dispatch even the steepest hills XT M8100 12 SpeedThe new M8100 XT 12 speed groupset functions beautifully with a light and tactile shift. We love the silent hub too Size S M L XL Seat tube 406.4 mm 431.8 mm 457.2 mm 482.6 mm Top tube 592 mm 612 mm 640 mm 669 mm Head tube 112 mm 125 mm 140 mm 150 mm Head angle 65.6° 65.6° 65.6° 65.6° Seat angle 75° 75° 75° 75° Chainstays 430 mm 430 mm 430 mm 430 mm BB-Drop 34 mm 34 mm 34 mm 34 mm Wheelbase 1103 mm 1132 mm 1159 mm 1186 mm Reach 432 mm 456 mm 480 mm 504 mm Stack 604 mm 616 mm 627 mm 639 mm googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('div-gpt-ad-1408638783102-1'); }); The Whyte S-120C RS on the trail Just looking at the geometry it’s clear that the Whyte S-120C RS is a bike targeted at high-speed fun and that’s exactly what it delivers. The long and slack geometry provides huge stability, offset by the pop of the progressive suspension. It’s fast. Really fast. Too fast for the Maxxis Forekaster tire which lacks bite at the front in hard-charging corners. However, we loved the Shimano M8100 drivetrain. Flying silently down the hill with no noise from the freehub is awesome, especially as the rest of the bike is so silent. The modern geometry inspires huge confidence in the bike’s capability and for most testers, it was the fastest bike downhill when the trails got rough. So much so, that the S-120C would not be out of place in a 160 mm enduro bike group test. It encourages you to push hard on rough terrain – too hard perhaps as we spent a lot of time re-tensioning the rear wheel. Tuning tipWe would fit a 3C EXO Maxxis Minion DHF tire on the front to provide a little more bite in wet or loose conditions. This confidence and competence comes at a cost – at 13.9 kg the S-120C RS is less of a mile-munching flyweight and more a short-legged, big-attitude bike, struggling to keep up with the rest of the group when gravity is not on its side. That’s not to say it’s a bad climber, but on long gradients the Whyte S-120C encourages you to sit and spin rather than sprint. It’s an excellent one-bike solution if you don’t need huge travel. Compared to it’s bigger sibling, the excellent S-150, which actually weighs a similar amount, on most traills the S-120C is more fun, staying high in its travel and extracting every morsel of speed from the terrain. It’s the sort of bike that makes every trail a race stage, even if it is just dropping your mates or setting personal bests. Conclusion While it’s not explosive uphill, as soon as you start pumping through flowing trails, railing berms and connecting gaps, the Whyte S-120C RS is a blast. The S-120C channels raw enduro DNA and makes an ideal one-bike solution for those who don’t want to hold back on the descents. Topsmakes every trail fungeometry makes it more capableFlopsfront tire lacks bitenot much lighter than an enduro bike Riding Characteristics 12Uphill 1sluggishefficientAgility 2cumbersomeplayfulStability 3nervousconfidentHandling 4unbalancedbalancedSuspension 5harshplushFun Factor 6plantedpoppyValue for money 7terriblevery goodTechnical DataWhyteS-120C RSSize: S M L XLWeight: 13,9 kgTravel (f/r): 120/120 mmWheel Size: 29"Price: € 4,299Intended UseXC 8Trail 9Enduro 10Downhill 11 The test field For an overview about the test field click her: The Best Short-Travel Trail Bike – 6 Mountain Bikes in Test All bikes in test: Canyon Neuron CF 8.0 | Merida ONE TWENTY 8000 | Specialized Epic Expert Evo | Trek Top Fuel 9.9 | Yeti SB100 C GX This article is from ENDURO issue #040ENDURO Mountainbike Magazine is published in a digital app format in both English and German. Download the app for iOS or Android to read all articles on your tablet or smartphone. 100% free! This scale indicates how efficiently the bike climbs. It refers to both simple and technical climbs. Along with the suspension, the riding position and the weight of the bike all play a crucial role.↩How does the bike ride and descend? How spritely is the bike, how agile is it through corners, how much fun is it in tight sections and how quickly can it change direction?↩Is the bike stable at high speeds? Is it easy to stay in control in demanding terrain? How composed is it on rough trails? Stability is a combination of balanced geometry, good suspension and the right spec.↩This is all about how balanced the bike is and particularly about how well it corners. Balanced bikes require little physical effort from the rider and are very predictable. If a bike is unbalanced, the rider has to work hard to weight the front wheel to generate enough grip. However, experienced riders can have a lot of fun even with unbalanced bikes.↩How sensitive is the suspension over small bumps? Can it absorb hard impacts and does it soak up repeated hits? Plush suspension not only provides comfort and makes a bike more capable, but it also generates traction. The rating includes the fork and the rear suspension.↩This aspect mainly comes down to the suspension. How much pop does it have, does it suck up the rider’s input or is it supportive, and how agile and direct is the bike?↩We don’t calculate value for money in an excel spreadsheet or based on how high-end a bike is specced. We are more concerned with how a bike performs on the trail and how the bike benefits the rider. What good are the best components if the bike doesn’t perform well on the trail? Expensive bikes with a lower-end spec can offer very good value for money – provided they excel where it matters. Just as supposedly cheap bikes with good components can get a bad rating if they don’t deliver on the trail.↩No, it’s not about racing, it’s about efficiency. Fast, fleet-footed and efficient – those who want to speed along flowy singletrack and gravel roads need a defined and spritely bike that accelerates with ease and efficiency. Nevertheless, reliable components are important too. We interpret XC more like the Americans do: big back-country rides instead of a marathon or XC World Cup with the ultimate in lightweight construction! Uphill-downhill ratio: 80:30 (not everything has to be 100%!)↩...also known as mountain biking. Classic singletrack with roots, rocks and ledges – sometimes flowy, sometimes rough. For this, you need a bike with good all-round qualities, whether climbing or descending. Uphill-downhill ratio: 50:50↩Even more extreme and challenging compared to Trail riding, riddled with every kind of obstacle: jumps, gaps, nasty rock gardens, ruts and roots. For this, you need (race)proven equipment that forgives mistakes and wouldn’t look out of place on a stage of the Enduro World Series. Climbing is just a means to an end. Uphill-downhill ratio: 30:70↩Strictly speaking, a 200 mm travel downhill bike is the best choice for merciless tracks with big jumps, drops and the roughest terrain. Those would be the black or double-black-diamond tracks in a bike park. But as some of the EWS pros (including Sam Hill) have proven, it’s the riding skills and not the bike that define what you can ride with it. Climbing? On foot or with a shuttle, please! Uphill-downhill ratio: 10:90↩You can find more info about our rating system in this article: Click here! ↩

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Enduro MTB - RSS
7 - 11/10/2019 12:17:17

At first glance, the Canyon Neuron CF 8.0 may look like the odd one out in this group test, undercutting the competition considerably on price. However, with a specification that rivals the Yeti SB100 and a geometry that on paper looks very similar to the competition, how will this affordable machine perform on the trail? For an overview about the test field click her: The Best Short-Travel Trail Bike – 6 Mountain Bikes in Test Canyon Neuron CF 8.0 | 130/130 mm | 13.3 kg | € 2,699 googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('div-gpt-ad-1408638783102-0'); }); Canyon are on a roll at the moment, producing one group test winning bike after the next. The Spectral and Strive have dominated our trail and enduro bike tests in the past. Sitting below the Spectral in travel, the Neuron is an interesting bike with 29-inch wheels and 130mm travel front and rear. While longer in travel than the rest of the bikes in this test, it has a similar ‘all rounder’ approach. Offering incredible value for money throughout the range, any Neuron would fit well in this test, but it was the ridiculously affordable CF 8.0 model that caught our attention, boasting a full carbon frame and a SRAM GX drivetrain for an eye-wateringly low € 2,699. The rest of the specification is all sensibly chosen, there’s no bling, but it’s all reliable and functional. The Fox 34 Rhythm fork may lack the extensive weight saving of the Step-Cast models, but it offers more lateral stiffness, and the DT Swiss M1900 wheelset is nice at this price point. On paper, the Canyon Neuron looks like the bargain of the century and shows that the direct sales champions are still looking after customers looking for an affordable entry into the sport. Sitting between the hard-hitting Spectral and the nervous Lux, the Canyon Neuron makes a lot of sense for riders looking for a comfortable and capable mile muncher. Helmet POC Tectal Glasses Oakley Race Jackets | Jersey Mons Royale Merino | Shorts Specialized Demo Pants The Canyon Neuron CF 8.0 in detail Fork FOX 34 Rhythm 130 mm Shock FOX FLOAT DPS Performance 130 mm Brakes SRAM Guide T 108/180 mm Drivetrain SRAM GX Eagle Seatpost Iridium Dropper 150 mm Stem Iridium 60 mm Handlebar Iridium Flatbar 760 mm Wheels DT Swiss M 1900 Tires MAXXIS Forekaster 2.35″ No stopping nowThe SRAM Guide T brakes are underpowered, struggling to restrain the Canyon Neuron’s enjoyable and playful character Function over formWhile functional, we found the remote for the Iridium dropper post was a little wobbly Frame protectionThe Canyon Neuron features a neat ‘steering stop’ to stop the bars rotating and damaging the frame No protectionOur Scottish testers were a little worried seeing exposed bearing faces inside the rear linkage. Inevitably, these collect muck, mud and dirt. Too linearThe stock rear suspension of the Canyon Neuron is very linear, lacking mid-stroke support. We found the performance improved with the addition of a 0.8 in3 spacer. Size XS S M L XL Top tube 558 mm 581 mm 603 mm 626 mm 654 mm Head tube 88 mm 100 mm 102 mm 112 mm 143 mm Head angle 67.0° 67.0° 67.5° 67.5° 67.5° Seat angle 74.5° 74.5° 74.5° 74.5° 74.5° Chainstays 430 mm 430 mm 440 mm 440 mm 440 mm BB-Drop 38 mm 38 mm 38 mm 38 mm 38 mm Wheelbase 1,121 mm 1,146 mm 1,167 mm 1,190 mm 1,222 mm Reach 398 mm 418 mm 433 mm 453 mm 473 mm Stack 578 mm 589 mm 614 mm 623 mm 651 mm googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('div-gpt-ad-1408638783102-1'); }); The Canyon Neuron CF 8.0 on the trail As with most Canyons, on the trail the Neuron is an easy bike to love. The familiar and engaging handling that defines other models like the Spectral is still there through the corners but the Neuron is a little more lively on undulating trails, darting along with a nimble and composed ride. Like most of the bikes in this test, the Canyon Neuron’s seat tube is a little slacker than we would like for the climbs but the efficient kinematics and small chainring let us spin up the steepest hills without fuss. On the descents, the high front end, combined with the comfortable reach, gives safe and predictable handling without the nervousness and snappy character often found on short-travel bikes. The Neuron is an exercise in balance and the easy-going ride will delight intermediate riders, remaining composed even if you don’t ride it in the most active way. Tuning tipsThe rear suspension of the Canyon Neuron feels linear and plush. Riders who enjoy air time will want to experiment with volume reducers for more progression in the shock. Harder riding testers found the kinematics too linear and easily overpowered and bottomed-out the Fox DPS Performance shock. However, the addition of a medium volume spacer did improve the ride. Unfortunately, the SRAM Guide T brakes, are woefully underpowered and leave you holding back from pushing things too far. The remote for the Iridium dropper post was a little wobbly but aside from that, there was very little to fault. While the neutral personality didn’t excite the more advanced riders in our group-test, the Canyon Neuron was effortless to ride and happy to smash out both big mountain epics and fast laps of home trails. The Canyon Neuron is the perfect choice for an intermediate rider looking for an affordable introduction into trail riding nirvana. Conclusion If you usually ride moderate trails and enjoy long days in the saddle then the Canyon Neuron is a bargain. Offering a refined and comfortable ride to a broad spectrum of ability levels, the Neuron is an outstanding trail bike. Aggressive riders wanting to push hard may find the Neuron a little tame. Topseasily accessible performanceoutstanding valueFlopsGuide T brakes are underpoweredlinear suspension lacks support Riding Characteristics 12Uphill 1sluggishefficientAgility 2cumbersomeplayfulStability 3nervousconfidentHandling 4unbalancedbalancedSuspension 5harshplushFun Factor 6plantedpoppyValue for money 7terriblevery goodTechnical DataCanyonNeuron CF 8.0Size: XS S M L XLWeight: 13,3 kgTravel (f/r): 130/130 mmWheel Size: 29"Price: € 2,699Intended UseXC 8Trail 9Enduro 10Downhill 11 The test field For an overview about the test field click her: The Best Short-Travel Trail Bike – 6 Mountain Bikes in Test All bikes in test: Merida ONE TWENTY 8000 | Specialized Epic Expert Evo | Trek Top Fuel 9.9 | Whyte S-120C RS | Yeti SB100 C GX This article is from ENDURO issue #040ENDURO Mountainbike Magazine is published in a digital app format in both English and German. Download the app for iOS or Android to read all articles on your tablet or smartphone. 100% free! This scale indicates how efficiently the bike climbs. It refers to both simple and technical climbs. Along with the suspension, the riding position and the weight of the bike all play a crucial role.↩How does the bike ride and descend? How spritely is the bike, how agile is it through corners, how much fun is it in tight sections and how quickly can it change direction?↩Is the bike stable at high speeds? Is it easy to stay in control in demanding terrain? How composed is it on rough trails? Stability is a combination of balanced geometry, good suspension and the right spec.↩This is all about how balanced the bike is and particularly about how well it corners. Balanced bikes require little physical effort from the rider and are very predictable. If a bike is unbalanced, the rider has to work hard to weight the front wheel to generate enough grip. However, experienced riders can have a lot of fun even with unbalanced bikes.↩How sensitive is the suspension over small bumps? Can it absorb hard impacts and does it soak up repeated hits? Plush suspension not only provides comfort and makes a bike more capable, but it also generates traction. The rating includes the fork and the rear suspension.↩This aspect mainly comes down to the suspension. How much pop does it have, does it suck up the rider’s input or is it supportive, and how agile and direct is the bike?↩We don’t calculate value for money in an excel spreadsheet or based on how high-end a bike is specced. We are more concerned with how a bike performs on the trail and how the bike benefits the rider. What good are the best components if the bike doesn’t perform well on the trail? Expensive bikes with a lower-end spec can offer very good value for money – provided they excel where it matters. Just as supposedly cheap bikes with good components can get a bad rating if they don’t deliver on the trail.↩No, it’s not about racing, it’s about efficiency. Fast, fleet-footed and efficient – those who want to speed along flowy singletrack and gravel roads need a defined and spritely bike that accelerates with ease and efficiency. Nevertheless, reliable components are important too. We interpret XC more like the Americans do: big back-country rides instead of a marathon or XC World Cup with the ultimate in lightweight construction! Uphill-downhill ratio: 80:30 (not everything has to be 100%!)↩...also known as mountain biking. Classic singletrack with roots, rocks and ledges – sometimes flowy, sometimes rough. For this, you need a bike with good all-round qualities, whether climbing or descending. Uphill-downhill ratio: 50:50↩Even more extreme and challenging compared to Trail riding, riddled with every kind of obstacle: jumps, gaps, nasty rock gardens, ruts and roots. For this, you need (race)proven equipment that forgives mistakes and wouldn’t look out of place on a stage of the Enduro World Series. Climbing is just a means to an end. Uphill-downhill ratio: 30:70↩Strictly speaking, a 200 mm travel downhill bike is the best choice for merciless tracks with big jumps, drops and the roughest terrain. Those would be the black or double-black-diamond tracks in a bike park. But as some of the EWS pros (including Sam Hill) have proven, it’s the riding skills and not the bike that define what you can ride with it. Climbing? On foot or with a shuttle, please! Uphill-downhill ratio: 10:90↩You can find more info about our rating system in this article: Click here! ↩

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5 - 11/10/2019 12:17:17

Who says you should have less powerful brakes when riding with less travel? The Merida ONE-TWENTY 8000 goes against convention in more ways than one and delivers a versatile trail rocket that turns even the most boring trails into a playground. For an overview about the test field click her: The Best Short-Travel Trail Bike – 6 Mountain Bikes in Test Merida ONE TWENTY 8000 | 130/120 mm | 12.8 kg | € 6,799 googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('div-gpt-ad-1408638783102-0'); }); The € 6,799 Merida has the unenviable position of the second most expensive bike in this test but there are so many great features that we have to admit the money has been well spent. The 120 mm travel carbon frame is a work of art, with flowing lines and seat stays that are thin vertically and thick horizontally to improve vertical compliance while maintaining lateral stiffness. Mechanics will appreciate that all the frame hardware is serviceable from one side using big T30 bolts and that the internal cables are firmly anchored – it’s this painstaking attention to detail that demonstrates Merida’s high quality approach. Sadly the thin and delicate paint means it’s easy to spoil the beautiful finish. The Merida ONE-TWENTY 8000 packs a 130 mm RockShox Pike fork which has far more torsional stiffness than the Step Cast Fox 34 fitted to the other bikes in this test and we were delighted to see a full SRAM X01 Eagle drivetrain – outstanding! The Merida ONE-TWENTY is a bike for all abilities. Comfortable and confidence inspiring for beginners, and an absolute weapon in experienced hands. Helmet MET Roam MIPS | Glasses Oakley Race Jacket PRIZM | Jersey Fat House Bolt | Shorts VOID Orbit THe Merida ONE TWENTY 8000 in detail Fork RockShox Pike RTC3 130 mm Shock RockShox Deluxe RT3 120 mm Brakes SRAM Code RSC 180/180 mm Drivetrain SRAM X01 Eagle Seatpost KS Lev Integra 150 mm Stem Merida Expert TR 50 mm Handlebar Merida Expert TR 760 mm Wheels FSA Gradient LTD Tires MAXXIS Minion DHRII / Forekaster 2.35″ Fast off the markThe lightweight carbon FSA Gradient LTD wheels accelerate quickly, even when fitted with the excellent but more robust Maxxis Minion DHR II front tyre. Speed and control. Best in the businessMerida should be commended for not bowing to convention and fitting the best brakes to their bike. SRAM Code RSCs smash the competition in this group. Off axisOn long climbs, the seat-tube angle feels slacker than the 75.5 degrees would suggest. That’s especially the case for taller riders due to the kinked seat tube. Perfect suspensionThe Merida ONE-TWENTY makes the most of its 120 mm of travel, only using it when needed and providing a playful ride rich in support and fun Neat cable routingThe cable routing on the frame is clean with no taps or rattles from the cables within the frame Size S M L XL Top tube 572 mm 592 mm 614.4 mm 636.8 mm Head tube 95 mm 95 mm 105 mm 115 mm Head angle 67.3° 67.3° 67.3° 67.3° Seat angle 75.5° 75.5° 75.5° 75.5° Chainstays 435 mm 435 mm 435 mm 435 mm BB-Drop 40 mm 40 mm 40 mm 40 mm Wheelbase 1,140.7 mm 1,160.7 mm 1,184.6 mm 1,208.4 mm Reach 415 mm 435 mm 455 mm 475 mm Stack 607.1 mm 607.1 mm 616.3 mm 625.5 mm googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('div-gpt-ad-1408638783102-1'); }); The Merida ONE TWENTY 8000 on the trail Both up- and downhill, the Merida’s stiff and direct carbon frame feels powerful and lively. Even the smallest turn of the cranks results in an urgent rush of acceleration. However, it’s the full-floater suspension that is the real highlight. The bearings in the upper shock mount ensure sensitivity to small bumps, which is complemented by the outstanding mid-stroke support, feeling very much in harmony with the playful ethos of the bike. The progressive feel ensures there is no wallowing and instead the Merida loves to pump and pop off even the smallest lip. The SRAM Code RSC brakes are a revelation in this group test. Powerful and offering huge amounts of modulation, they slow down the 12.8 kg Merida effortlessly with more control and precision than any other bike here. Similarly the lightweight carbon FSA Gradient LTD wheels spin up and accelerate quickly, even when with the excellent but heavier Maxxis Minion DHR II front tyre. Tuning tipWe would spend some time wrapping the frame with protection tape as the paint finish is not the most durable Together that makes light work of undulating trails where you are hard on the power, then hard on the brakes. We found the Merida ONE-TWENTY 8000 certainly punches above its travel numbers and we enjoyed putting pressure on bigger bikes whenever the opportunity arose. It’s a bike that excels at post-work, two-hour shreds, or fast laps of the local trails. Adding some spacers under the stem to make the ride position less aggressive improved comfort on long tours and big mountain epics. What impressed us most is the cohesive and sensible specification that leaves nothing to be desired or upgraded. A worthy winner of our Best In Test award. Conclusion Like a high-end electric guitar, the Merida ONE-TWENTY 8000 is best enjoyed by a skilled rider. With its rewarding ride that gives back what you put in, it’s a bike made for fun, no matter the distance or terrain. If you see every bump as a takeoff and want the best build kit, the Merida is Best In Test. Topsprecise handling and engaging suspensiongreat Spec for Trail FunFlopspaint chips easilyPrologo saddle unpopular with all testers Riding Characteristics 12Uphill 1sluggishefficientAgility 2cumbersomeplayfulStability 3nervousconfidentHandling 4unbalancedbalancedSuspension 5harshplushFun Factor 6plantedpoppyValue for money 7terriblevery goodTechnical DataMeridaONE-TWENTY 8000Size: S M L XLWeight: 12,8 kgTravel (f/r): 130/120 mmWheel Size: 29"Price: € 6,799Intended UseXC 8Trail 9Enduro 10Downhill 11 The test field For an overview about the test field click her: The Best Short-Travel Trail Bike – 6 Mountain Bikes in Test All bikes in test: Canyon Neuron CF 8.0 | Specialized Epic Expert Evo | Trek Top Fuel 9.9 | Whyte S-120C RS | Yeti SB100 C GX This article is from ENDURO issue #040ENDURO Mountainbike Magazine is published in a digital app format in both English and German. Download the app for iOS or Android to read all articles on your tablet or smartphone. 100% free! This scale indicates how efficiently the bike climbs. It refers to both simple and technical climbs. Along with the suspension, the riding position and the weight of the bike all play a crucial role.↩How does the bike ride and descend? How spritely is the bike, how agile is it through corners, how much fun is it in tight sections and how quickly can it change direction?↩Is the bike stable at high speeds? Is it easy to stay in control in demanding terrain? How composed is it on rough trails? Stability is a combination of balanced geometry, good suspension and the right spec.↩This is all about how balanced the bike is and particularly about how well it corners. Balanced bikes require little physical effort from the rider and are very predictable. If a bike is unbalanced, the rider has to work hard to weight the front wheel to generate enough grip. However, experienced riders can have a lot of fun even with unbalanced bikes.↩How sensitive is the suspension over small bumps? Can it absorb hard impacts and does it soak up repeated hits? Plush suspension not only provides comfort and makes a bike more capable, but it also generates traction. The rating includes the fork and the rear suspension.↩This aspect mainly comes down to the suspension. How much pop does it have, does it suck up the rider’s input or is it supportive, and how agile and direct is the bike?↩We don’t calculate value for money in an excel spreadsheet or based on how high-end a bike is specced. We are more concerned with how a bike performs on the trail and how the bike benefits the rider. What good are the best components if the bike doesn’t perform well on the trail? Expensive bikes with a lower-end spec can offer very good value for money – provided they excel where it matters. Just as supposedly cheap bikes with good components can get a bad rating if they don’t deliver on the trail.↩No, it’s not about racing, it’s about efficiency. Fast, fleet-footed and efficient – those who want to speed along flowy singletrack and gravel roads need a defined and spritely bike that accelerates with ease and efficiency. Nevertheless, reliable components are important too. We interpret XC more like the Americans do: big back-country rides instead of a marathon or XC World Cup with the ultimate in lightweight construction! Uphill-downhill ratio: 80:30 (not everything has to be 100%!)↩...also known as mountain biking. Classic singletrack with roots, rocks and ledges – sometimes flowy, sometimes rough. For this, you need a bike with good all-round qualities, whether climbing or descending. Uphill-downhill ratio: 50:50↩Even more extreme and challenging compared to Trail riding, riddled with every kind of obstacle: jumps, gaps, nasty rock gardens, ruts and roots. For this, you need (race)proven equipment that forgives mistakes and wouldn’t look out of place on a stage of the Enduro World Series. Climbing is just a means to an end. Uphill-downhill ratio: 30:70↩Strictly speaking, a 200 mm travel downhill bike is the best choice for merciless tracks with big jumps, drops and the roughest terrain. Those would be the black or double-black-diamond tracks in a bike park. But as some of the EWS pros (including Sam Hill) have proven, it’s the riding skills and not the bike that define what you can ride with it. Climbing? On foot or with a shuttle, please! Uphill-downhill ratio: 10:90↩You can find more info about our rating system in this article: Click here! ↩

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5 - 11/10/2019 12:17:17

Yeti’s have always been expensive. With looks to die for, the TURQ urq models command a premium that puts them firmly into the ‘super bike’ category. However, the C model brings the distinctive turquoise silhouette to an affordable price point, but is the SB100 still a dream bike? For an overview about the test field click her: The Best Short-Travel Trail Bike – 6 Mountain Bikes in Test Yeti SB100 C GX | 120/100 mm | 13.1 kg | € 5,490 googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('div-gpt-ad-1408638783102-0'); }); When it comes to a price comparison, it’s rare to find a Yeti in any position other than the most expensive. In contrast the C-series carbon Yeti SB100 looks almost affordable. Anyone looking for a dream build will be disappointed. While the SRAM Guide R brakes, basic DT Swiss M1900 wheelset and SRAM GX drivetrain are all perfectly adequate for trail riding, they are not the level you would expect for a bike that costs over € 5,490. The Fox 34 Step-Cast 120 mm fork, DPS shock and Fox Transfer Dropper post are all Performance units, without the shiny Kashima coating and improved FIT4 dampers that mark out the more exclusive Factory models. Can the elegant lines of the drop-dead-gorgeous SB100 C frame with its clever Switch Infinity translating main pivot be enough to command such a premium? On paper, the Yeti makes for an underwhelming proposition. Looks can be deceiving though – just wait until you ride it! The Yeti SB100 C balances performance, comfort and confidence beautifully. It was always the first bike to be taken from the lineup. Helmet POC Tectal | Glasses Oakley Racing Jacket | Jersey Fox Ranger Drirelease | Shorts POC Essential DH The Yeti SB100 C GX in detail Fork Fox Float Performance 34 Step-Cast 120 mm Shock Fox Performance DPS 100 mm Brakes SRAM Guide R 180/160 mm Drivetrain SRAM GX Eagle Seatpost Fox Transfer Performance 175 mm Stem Raceface Ride 35 50 mm Handlebar Raceface Aeffect 35 760 mm Wheels Dt Swiss M1900 Tires Maxxis Minion DHF EXO / Maxxis Aggressor EXO 2.3″ Bad designThe long rebound barrel adjuster on the slimmed down Step-Cast fork is attached to a thin bar. Ours snapped off with minimal force. Great featuresThe Yeti SB100 frame features tidy cable ports and well designed routing, resulting in a ride that is silent without cables rattling Beautiful frameNot only is the Yeti SB100 frame drop-dead gorgeous, it also provides an easy going ride that is fast and fun everywhere Everything worksWhile the Yeti SB100 may lack Kashima bling, the no-nonsense build kit works well and is functional and reliable Dedicated grease portThe Switch Infinity does add more complexity to the bike, but is easy to service with a dedicated grease port to allow for easy lubrication of the stanchions Size S M L XL Seat tube 393 mm 419 mm 457 mm 495 mm Top tube 576.7 mm 605.2 mm 630.3 mm 657.2 mm Head tube 96.2 mm 107.0 mm 123.2 mm 144.7 mm Head angle 67.8° 67.8° 67.8° 67.8° Seat angle 74.3° 74.3° 74.1° 74.0° Chainstays 437 mm 437 mm 437mm 437 mm Wheelbase 1,112.3 mm 1,151.4 mm 1,177.4 mm 1,205.5 mm Reach 407.1 mm 432.1 mm 452.1 mm 472.1 mm Stack 602.0 mm 612.1 mm 627.1 mm 647.2 mm googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('div-gpt-ad-1408638783102-1'); }); The Yeti SB100 C GX on the trail The Yeti SB100 C is a superb bike, simultaneously effortlessly comfortable, incredibly fast and easy to ride. The Switch Infinity suspension is amazingly active, magic carpeting over roots and rocks like a bike with far more travel. It happily floats through travel with support in the midstroke that is less hard-edged than the Trek or Merida. Instead, the bike feels more easy-going and confident, easily keeping contact with the ground and maintaining traction on tough downhills. Uphills are a breeze, somehow defying the bike’s 13.1 kg weight. You will need to add a little compression damping on long climbs to restrict the active travel and while the bike climbs smoothly, the seat tube angle is a lot slacker than its SB130 and SB150 siblings. That meant we felt a lot more efficient pushing the saddle right to the front of the rails. Tuning tipWe ran the seat far forward on the rails to steepen up the effective seat tube angle for increased efficiency uphill Acceleration is not quite as brisk out of the corners as some bikes in our test due to the heavier tires, but for that you’ll get more traction and versatility. The steering is sublimely light and responsive and the central riding position allows you to easily distribute your weight between the wheels. The ride is totally silent, with a well-damped frame working in harmony with the suspension. The Fox SC forks do get a little overwhelmed in hard terrain, flexing a little and lacking accuracy though the GRIP damper works really well in this shorter travel incarnation. Those concerned with maintenance will like that the Switch Infinity unit has a cover to protect against spray and mud and has a dedicated grease gun port for easy servicing. Overall, the Yeti was always the first bike to be chosen from the test rack and the hardest to claw back from the testers. Conclusion The Yeti SB100 C is a great bike for those looking to have maximum fun on both the ups and the downs. For fast post-work laps on rugged trails one day and smashing out a 100 km loop the next, the Yeti SB100 C is amazingly versatile. Mixing a perfect blend of comfort and performance with a beautiful frame that deserves upgrades through its lifetime, the Yeti takes our Best Value award. Topsall-round trail rocket that climbs like a goat, but has a hard-charging sidethe frame design and construction is beautifulFlops160 mm rear rotor too smallpedal bob on climbs Riding Characteristics 12Uphill 1sluggishefficientAgility 2cumbersomeplayfulStability 3nervousconfidentHandling 4unbalancedbalancedSuspension 5harshplushFun Factor 6plantedpoppyValue for money 7terriblevery goodTechnical DataYeti SB100 C GXSize: S M L XLWeight: 13,1 kgTravel (f/r): 120/100 mmWheel Size: 29"Price: € 5,490Intended UseXC 8Trail 9Enduro 10Downhill 11 The test field For an overview about the test field click her: The Best Short-Travel Trail Bike – 6 Mountain Bikes in Test All bikes in test: Canyon Neuron CF 8.0 | Merida ONE TWENTY 8000 | Specialized Epic Expert Evo | Trek Top Fuel 9.9 | Whyte S-120C RS This article is from ENDURO issue #040ENDURO Mountainbike Magazine is published in a digital app format in both English and German. Download the app for iOS or Android to read all articles on your tablet or smartphone. 100% free! This scale indicates how efficiently the bike climbs. It refers to both simple and technical climbs. Along with the suspension, the riding position and the weight of the bike all play a crucial role.↩How does the bike ride and descend? How spritely is the bike, how agile is it through corners, how much fun is it in tight sections and how quickly can it change direction?↩Is the bike stable at high speeds? Is it easy to stay in control in demanding terrain? How composed is it on rough trails? Stability is a combination of balanced geometry, good suspension and the right spec.↩This is all about how balanced the bike is and particularly about how well it corners. Balanced bikes require little physical effort from the rider and are very predictable. If a bike is unbalanced, the rider has to work hard to weight the front wheel to generate enough grip. However, experienced riders can have a lot of fun even with unbalanced bikes.↩How sensitive is the suspension over small bumps? Can it absorb hard impacts and does it soak up repeated hits? Plush suspension not only provides comfort and makes a bike more capable, but it also generates traction. The rating includes the fork and the rear suspension.↩This aspect mainly comes down to the suspension. How much pop does it have, does it suck up the rider’s input or is it supportive, and how agile and direct is the bike?↩We don’t calculate value for money in an excel spreadsheet or based on how high-end a bike is specced. We are more concerned with how a bike performs on the trail and how the bike benefits the rider. What good are the best components if the bike doesn’t perform well on the trail? Expensive bikes with a lower-end spec can offer very good value for money – provided they excel where it matters. Just as supposedly cheap bikes with good components can get a bad rating if they don’t deliver on the trail.↩No, it’s not about racing, it’s about efficiency. Fast, fleet-footed and efficient – those who want to speed along flowy singletrack and gravel roads need a defined and spritely bike that accelerates with ease and efficiency. Nevertheless, reliable components are important too. We interpret XC more like the Americans do: big back-country rides instead of a marathon or XC World Cup with the ultimate in lightweight construction! Uphill-downhill ratio: 80:30 (not everything has to be 100%!)↩...also known as mountain biking. Classic singletrack with roots, rocks and ledges – sometimes flowy, sometimes rough. For this, you need a bike with good all-round qualities, whether climbing or descending. Uphill-downhill ratio: 50:50↩Even more extreme and challenging compared to Trail riding, riddled with every kind of obstacle: jumps, gaps, nasty rock gardens, ruts and roots. For this, you need (race)proven equipment that forgives mistakes and wouldn’t look out of place on a stage of the Enduro World Series. Climbing is just a means to an end. Uphill-downhill ratio: 30:70↩Strictly speaking, a 200 mm travel downhill bike is the best choice for merciless tracks with big jumps, drops and the roughest terrain. Those would be the black or double-black-diamond tracks in a bike park. But as some of the EWS pros (including Sam Hill) have proven, it’s the riding skills and not the bike that define what you can ride with it. Climbing? On foot or with a shuttle, please! Uphill-downhill ratio: 10:90↩You can find more info about our rating system in this article: Click here! ↩

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