Hardly any other topic gives mountain bikers more to talk about than wheels and tyres. Traditional 26" tyres have declined in popularity significantly over the last few years, and larger 27.5" and 29" tyres have become the two most important
sizes. The frame and fork of the bike dictate the basic size and tyre clearance. Modern mountain bikers have a massive range to choose from and will be able to find something for every size and type of riding. Modern mountain bikes fit tyres ranging in width from 2" (about 48 mm) to as wide as 2.6" inches (about 66 mm). Downhill bikes fit wider tyres for additional control and traction. Extra-wide fat bike tyres and the B+ format are also available. Many models are also available in tubeless versions.
If you’re looking to improve your mountain biking or tackle new terrain, one of the easiest upgrades you can make to your bike is changing out the tyres. Having the right tyres for your riding style can help you gain traction on difficult trails, reduce your rolling resistance for faster descents, and even save you from dealing with flats on the trail. Here at bikester.co.uk, we have a huge selection of mountain bike tyres for every bike and ride.
Choosing the Right Mountain Bike Tyres
When it comes to picking the best mountain bike tyres for your ride, there are a couple different things to take into account.
The width of tyre you can use on your bike depends in part on your wheels – each wheel is designed to accept tyres up to a maximum width. Wider tyres are preferred by a lot of riders because they offer more traction and make it easier to roll over obstacles. That said, as your tyres get wider, you’ll add rolling resistance to your bike and make it harder to accelerate. In general, trail and downhill mountain bikes use tyres between 2.25-2.5 inches. Cross country bikes typically use narrower tyres – 1.9-2.25 inches – to allow them to move faster and climb hills more efficiently.
The bumps and knobs on the outside of your tyres – known as lugs – play a huge role in determining how much grip your wheels will get on different types of terrain.
Widely spaced lugs are perfect for sand and mud. The channels between the lugs allow material to move freely rather than force your tyre to slip.
Tightly spaced lugs are better suited for riding on hardpacked dirt and other solid surfaces. The tight spacing between lugs reduces your rolling resistance, allowing you to ride faster. Look for lugs that are slanted towards the rear of the tyre for even more speed.
Side lugs on the edges of your tyres are ideal for cornering. When you angle the bike to take a sharp turn, side lugs will make sure you still have enough traction to prevent sliding out.
There are a number of different types of tyre builds, each with their own advantages:
Clincher tyres are the most common type of mountain bike tyre. They use a bead to snap onto your wheel, which makes it easy to change a tube out on the trail. Plus, since they’re so common, it’s easy to find many different types of clincher tyres.
Folding tyres are a lot like clincher tyres, but the bead isn’t quite as rigid. Folding tyres make great spares since they can be easily stored in a small bike bag for your ride.
Tubeless tyres don’t have a tube – the tyre seals against your wheel’s rim for an airtight fit. The advantages to tubeless tyres are that they don’t flat as frequently and allow you to ride at lower tyre pressures, which improve traction. However, flats on a tubeless tyre can be very difficult to fix on the trail.
The other thing to consider when choosing a mountain bike tyre is whether you need a reinforcement to prevent punctures. Many tyres feature a layer of Kevlar to help protect against thorns and sharp rocks, but these protective layers also add weight to your tyres.
Mountain Bike Tyres at bikester.co.uk
Most bike shops only carry a few different styles of mountain bike tyres, limiting your options for different rides. But here at bikester.co.uk, we have a wide selection of mountain bike tyres for every riding style and wheel diameter. Plus, we offer a 100-day return policy and flexible shipping options.