Michelin Wild Grip'r 2:
Michelin's Wild Grip'r 2 is a completely new design for 2012 and is aimed squarely at the trail or all-mountain rider who is looking for an all around tire option. Designed to excel in the majority of conditions, the new tread pattern is laid out in a manner that should clear well when riding in wet conditions, but still offer relatively low rolling resistance when the trails are dry. Likely most interesting to Pinkbike readers will be the 26 x 2.35" tubeless ready option that makes use of Michelin's Advanced Reinforced casing. We spent countless hours on their Wild Rock'r
, a tire that makes use of the same casing, and had great results. It was, without exaggerating, likely the most reliable tire that we have ever reviewed.
Interestingly, Michelin uses different rubber compounds for different widths in order to find the ideal balance of traction, efficiency and longevity, with wider options making use of a softer durometer rubber. While it is easy to get in the habit of thinking that you need the softest compound available for maximum traction, Michelin wants people to know that the rebound speed of the rubber - how fast it returns to its original shape - is just as important. A harder compound tire with a slower rubber rebound speed will behave very much like a tire that uses a soft compound, but will last much longer. They have been working to tune these two characteristics separately on their latest mountain bike tires, using what feels like a slightly harder compound, but that has rebound properties that they have tuned in specifically for each design - faster on some and slower on others. Michelin Wild Grip'r 2 details:
• Intended use: all-mountain/trail
• Designed as an all around tire for most conditions
• Uses their Gum-X rubber compound with tuned rebound and durometer
• Different width tires make use of different compounds
• Available in Tubeless ready and UST Tubeless versions
• 30 TPI (reinforced casing
), 60 TPI and 110 TPI casing options
• 26" x 2.0, 2.1, 2.25 and 2.35" widths
• 29" x 2.0, 2.1 and 2.25 widths
• Weight: 490 - 680 grams
• MSRP: $49.95 - $64.95 USDProtek Max tube:
Michelin was also showing off a new inner tube design, called Protek Max, that they have put a lot of thought into, and the finished product looks nothing like a standard tube. Yes, it looks very different, but there is some science behind the strange looking design. Michelin claims that their Protek Max tubes have a much greater chance of fending off a puncture over a standard tube thanks to their unique shape - the ridges on the top of the tube work as expansion joints, allowing the tube to expand without getting any thinner. The molded bumps on the tube's sidewall function in much the same way, helping to reduce surface tension and prevent the rubber from becoming too thin to prevent a puncture. That's not all though, because those same ridges actually help to seal holes as well. How? When the tube is inflated the ridges try to compress into each other, hopefully putting a stop to any leaking air.
The interesting looking semi-square shape has also been done for a reason, making the tube fit into the rim well better and easing install. Protek Max tubes also come stock filled with a tire sealant to further limit the chances of a flat. All of the above does come with a weight penalty though, with a Protek Max tube weighing in at roughly a full ounce more than a standard version in the same size. That is a relatively large amount of rotating weight to add to your bike, but we imagine that many riders who suffer from repeated flats, especially those who ride in the presence of thorns, won't mind. Michelin Protek Max tube details:
• Novel design lessens the chance of flats
• Ridges on the top and bumps on side lower surface tension
• Square shape fits rim well better than a standard tube
• Roughly an ounce heavier than a standard tube of the same size (26x2.1" - 250g
• Filled with a sealant
• Available in Presta or Schrader
• Available in 700c and 26" sizes
• MSRP: $9.95 USD
Visit the Michelin website
to see their entire lineup.
Sounds abit too good to be true Michelin but I'm super positive for it. Such innovation is always super welcome, rather than innovating only by making stuff lighter and lighter & what takes terrible toll on the wallet and makes less expensive options a rarity
Why should I buy it again?
Wonder if the idea would be getting slated if maxxis came up with it
Running both proper and ghetto tubebless setups at the moment both with regular maxxis tyres, its amazing. I used to puncture ALL the time, havnt punctured since i made the switch despite running them 5psi softer.
Ghetto tubeless only requires a bmx tube and some sealant (and 20minutes of your time at first). No new wheel,s no new tyres. I reckon the weight is the same as with a regular tube and the puncture resistance is probably higher than these michelin tubes.
This tube, combined with talc, and stans, would be ridiculous.
I would look at the selection criteria for anything that came out, apply a weighted matrix, score the options, draw conclusions.
Would the manufacturer be in the matrix? Yes, as track record is important with reliability, not saying Maxxis would score highly though...
Look at tyres, Continental Black chili is the best compound out there for grip on damp rocks and roots, but until they sort out the weak casing compared to Maxxis or even better Schwalbe, I won't run my Kaisers unless it is very cold, where they rule by such a margin that I am willing to accept the relative probability of puncturing.
Ran it for a little bit when I was just starting out riding a few years ago. Got a pinch puncture, the hole was too big for the slime to handle so all of it ran into my tyre and messed that up. I then had to spend ages cleaning the slime off the tube so I could get a puncture repair kit on, then when I pumped the tyre up the small amount of slime that didn't empty itself into my tyre decided it wanted to get better acquainted with my pump and f*cked that up too.
Moral of the story: Don't use slime. If they got rid of the sealant I'd be very interested though, if it meant I could get away with lighter tyres and no punctures its all good.
You are welcome to come over here any time and see how un fun I make it, I guess I make is so un fun there is are full Dh tracks to pump tracks within a couple of miles of my house.... coz I built them.
I put the same thought into building as I do parts, I would say my tracks and track sections are pretty fun.
Riding is far more fun when you have grip, especially when you are riding with fast boys!
With the soil etc up here, it can be dry one day and p!ss wet through the next, and if you aint driftin you aint shiftin.
I get on my bike to go flat out, not mince my way down because I have a worn high roller on in the wet and mud or sit indoors whining because of the rain.
Sorry wee rant there, gotta love PB armchair riders...
I am currently an armchair rider as I drifted her into a tree 8 weeks ago, breaking my collar-bone :o(
At $10 its not the cheapest tube in the world so i would probably make damn sure it gets patched when it inevitably punctures but thats the same i do with every tube as i be a cheapskate Scot...some of my tubes have over 20 patches on them!!!
with all this technology going in to the tube why have they felt the need to fill it with shitty slime/sealant seems to me like the technology is only an nth degree better than a normal tube...if at all. having said that i do think its awesome that something totally new is being tried.
I´m biking in Peru since two days, and i had seven (!!!) flat tires so far... Man, it´s great here... BUT you really can´t enjoy the megaavalanche trail after the third puncture and then having to hitchhike down because you´ve run out of tubes...
I hope they can hold on to their promises, so that this won´t ever happen again to me...
Well, just had a one hour bus drive to the next bikeshop... And now I hope the best for the next days
The original packaging states 29 x 2.25" and 730 grams.
For anyone wanting actual spec's for their 29'r tire choices, here you go:
1st Tire weighed 750 grams and the 2nd weighed 755 grams.
Both measured out to 68mm (2.3") at 50 psi when seating bead with sealant and later measured exactly 67mm (2.25") at 24 psi. *** Mounted on stock Non-tubeless Weimann 24mm OD/19mm ID rims with stan's XC 29'r rim strips and sealant.
Standardisation fail. Give them an inch and they'll take 1 609 344 millimetres.