Yes, another gripping blog post about bicycle tires!
First of all, big up the Bontrager Hard Case, a “puncture-proof” tyre for road bikes. I put them on my commuter bike and have had 0 punctures so far, down from an average of 2 per week with the stock tyres.
Second, fat rims need fat tyres! I run Sun Mammoth rims on my Stinky, and Alastair at Wheelcraft persuaded me that it’s OK to run regular sized MTB tyres on them. His “loaf of bread theory” is that the tyre works better sat inside a wide rim like a loaf of bread in a baking tin, than bulging out of a narrow rim like a Starbucks muffin. Well, he’s wrong. I put a 2.5″ Big Earl on the front, in place of the old 2.25″ tyre, and the bike corners so much better it’s unreal. I think the narrower tyre ends up with a flattened tread profile that stops the contact patch from assuming the right shape when you lean into a corner. Like putting a car tyre on your motorbike. It kind of works on the back, but you wouldn’t want it on the front.
Finally, an apology to the Conti Gravity tyre that I bitched about a few posts ago. I got hate mail from someone who lives next door to the Conti factory 😉 I put it on the front of my Inbred and it works great. It’s just a bit wussy to be a back tyre on a freeride bike.