Tyres For Kiwi Brevet - Crossmark Vs Ravens Vs Vulpine...

Postby mfw on Wed 4/Dec/13 8:57pm

So, my last Brevet setup decision, tyres. I am running 26 inch with ghetto tubeless (Stans juice). The event is 1100km: 50% sealed roads, 40% gravel roads, 6% 4WD, 4% singletrack. Bike is full suspension so the tyres will have a bit of an easier time off road.

Until recently I have been thinking light / fast rolling tyres and careful line choice on rocks and 'she'll be alright'. However, riding part of the course at the weekend (Manguatapu) I started thinking that might be a bit naive when tired and fully loaded up, so maybe some sidewall protection would be in order. Of course the proper 'bikepackers' would just carry a sewing kit for trail sidewall repairs...

So my criteria: fast rolling, a bit of sidewall protection, (ghetto) tubeless compatibility, good for 1100km. So probably a 'slick with sideknobs' type tyre that I can pump to to 60+psi for the road, and drop to 30psi for off road. Here's my shortlist:

Maxxis:
Wormdrive (bit skinny, only come in 1.9)
Crossmark 2.1 / 2.25
Ikon 2.2 (reportedly faster rolling than Crossmark but doesn't look like it would be)

Stans Ravens
A bit fragile?

WTB Vulpine
A bit fragile?
Last edited by mfw on Wed 4/Dec/13 11:11pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Tyres For Kiwi Brevet - Crossmark Vs Ravens Vs Vulpine...

Postby musta on Wed 4/Dec/13 9:35pm

WTB Nano Raptors? Won something like 7 of the last 9 Tour Divides so I've been told.
Could be an option?
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Re: Tyres For Kiwi Brevet - Crossmark Vs Ravens Vs Vulpine...

Postby ringo on Wed 4/Dec/13 9:59pm

I find the Crossmarks and Ikons perform reasonably similarly on road and gravel. I'd maybe err towards Crossmarks out of these two because the centre tread seems to roll slightly better on road.

Having said that, I'm doing it on a fully rigid steel cross bike with good quality 42mm touring tyres. Odds on this will get fairly 'interesting' on Maungatapu, but should hopefully be quite good elsewhere. :D
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Re: Tyres For Kiwi Brevet - Crossmark Vs Ravens Vs Vulpine...

Postby pushbikerider on Wed 4/Dec/13 10:15pm

Off and on I have used Ikon out the back of the trail bike, and if funds allow I will put a pair on the ARC, as they work well in most conditions up to fairly damp, roll well AND they are a high volume casing which I supect will be important over the time / distance of Brevet (even on a fully)
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Re: Tyres For Kiwi Brevet - Crossmark Vs Ravens Vs Vulpine...

Postby Zoom on Wed 4/Dec/13 10:24pm

I used Vulpines in 2012 kiwibrevet and le petit brevit and did most of my 24 hour training on them, and no punctures. I will use vulpines for 2014, and might treat myself to a new pair. I like their volume i.e comfort, and find them grippy enough for the minimal single track in the kb.

I used Stan ravens in 2010, and found they wore badly very quickly, wouldn't hold air even on stans rims, were noisy and slow
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Re: Tyres For Kiwi Brevet - Crossmark Vs Ravens Vs Vulpine...

Postby Farm on Wed 4/Dec/13 10:55pm

Im a bit naive tyre wise. I'm using WTB Mutano Raptors on a rigid bike. They seem to roll pretty well on the road/gravel and have plenty of grip on the dirt. They're 44mm which sounds wide to me but they don't give a very soft ride.
I'm wondering if I'd be better off with a bit more volume?
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Re: Tyres For Kiwi Brevet - Crossmark Vs Ravens Vs Vulpine...

Postby Eljefe on Thu 5/Dec/13 10:24am

Ive used Ravens twice in 26inch mode on fully. No problems but they wear pretty fast. Not great on fast gravel descents like Pt Underwood, but we be climbing it this time ! The Maungatapu isnt too rough on them.
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Re: Tyres For Kiwi Brevet - Crossmark Vs Ravens Vs Vulpine...

Postby Philthy on Thu 5/Dec/13 8:47pm

I used a couple of second hand 26 inch ravens on stans rims tubeless for the GSB and they were ace, and definitely not slow even at pressure in the low 20s PSI. I was riding with others the whole time and i was always faster than the others when coasting downhill (although not always when pedaling :huh: ).
Much better and heaps more comfortable than the WormDrive and Larsen combo (with tubes) I used for Le Petit Brevet, but not as tough - i had to put a tube in my back tyre for the last day and it wasn't nearly so ace.
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Re: Tyres For Kiwi Brevet - Crossmark Vs Ravens Vs Vulpine...

Postby mfw on Thu 5/Dec/13 10:06pm

Great to hear some advice from real Brevet riders :thumbsup:

WTB: Vulpines are proving difficult to track down, have they been superceded by Nano Raptors or something?
Wondering how Nano Raptors would handle sealed roads, KB has more than Tour Divide I would guess?

Interesting to hear mixed results with the Ravens, hmm.

As usual sounds like you can't go far wrong with Maxxis options.

I like to support LBS but pushys.com.au prices are pretty damn keen, about 1/3 to 1/2 price of LBS on many tyres :o
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Re: Tyres For Kiwi Brevet - Crossmark Vs Ravens Vs Vulpine...

Postby mfw on Fri 6/Dec/13 11:30am

Zoom wrote:I will use vulpines for 2014, and might treat myself to a new pair.

Sorry to bring the bad news.

Bobby McMullen, WTB wrote:Martin

First off, best of luck on you bike event in New Zealand. Also, thanks for looking to WTB for your rubber needs.

Unfortunately, we discontinued the Vulpine approximately 3 years ago. Agreed, this was a very fast rolling tire that would have worked well in the conditions you described. If you were able to find a pair on line somewhere, it may be a great value as well as being an effective for your event. It is a fairly limited use tire that was specifically designed to be a fast mover in hard/dry conditions.

That said, our long running Nano front and rear would be my suggestion. This is a medium volume tire available in a 26 inch, 2.1, that rolls very well but also provides enough tread side to side to be very effective in hard, firm and fast conditions. This tire has been a favorite among our xc athletes for many years.

Feel free to send any other questions.

Hope this helps and thanks again for looking to WTB for your tire needs.
Cheers
Bobby
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Re: Tyres For Kiwi Brevet - Crossmark Vs Ravens Vs Vulpine...

Postby Danny B on Fri 6/Dec/13 12:32pm

I have used Crossmarks for years in Australia, riding dry rocky singletrack. Never once tore a sidewall, but I have always used the LUST version which has beefy sidewalls. I think they would be a bit too slow on the tarmac for my liking. I would be instead looking at semi-slick, something like a Schwable Sammy Slick, Conti SpeedKing or a Maxxis Larsen Oriflamme. They'll be fine on gravel, they'll only suffer in mud or slippery clay.

my 2c.
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Re: Tyres For Kiwi Brevet - Crossmark Vs Ravens Vs Vulpine...

Postby tanadog on Fri 6/Dec/13 8:43pm

I thought they only made DH tyres in 26" these days :)
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Re: Tyres For Kiwi Brevet - Crossmark Vs Ravens Vs Vulpine...

Postby Slim on Fri 6/Dec/13 8:55pm

I rode cross marks 1000km accross Italy last year, for the vaired terrain they were pretty mint. Would trade again.
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Re: Tyres For Kiwi Brevet - Crossmark Vs Ravens Vs Vulpine...

Postby Simonk on Mon 9/Dec/13 10:36pm

The Crow (similar to Raven) is fast rolling and I've never noticed a noise problem. Rode these at the Great Divide (used one 29er tyre on the front and two & a bit 26 inch tyres on the rear). Zero punctures. They'll handle the Brevet fine. If set up properly, they seal fine. They're my go-to tyre when there's much road involved. Have done about 9,000 km on them now. Their one weakness is a lack of cornering edge in loose conditions.

If I was going to try a different tyre, it'd be the WTB nano-raptor. Great track record.
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Re: Tyres For Kiwi Brevet - Crossmark Vs Ravens Vs Vulpine...

Postby shmoodiver on Tue 10/Dec/13 10:03am

3..0 x 24 gazzaloddis F & R
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