Ask Pinkbike: Tire Inserts, Jumping, NX vs. GX, and Extreme Angles

Jul 21, 2020
by Daniel Sapp  

Here at Pinkbike, we get inundated with all kinds of questions, ranging from the basic "Can I have stickers" to more in-depth, soul-searching types of queries like if you should pop the question or what to name your first child. Ask Pinkbike is an occasional column where we'll be hand-picking and answering questions that have been keeping readers up at night, although we'll likely steer clear of those last two and keep it more tech-oriented.






Going Tubeless Without Protection?

Question: @ItsMartY asks in the Downhill Forum: Hey guys, I'm considering going tubeless. I need your advice. I got stock Alex rims on my bike but they're tubeless-ready and pretty durable for me. I know that tubeless has no disadvantages but I don't want to spend so much money on Cushcore or something like this. I like to ride jumps, brap berms and this stuff but I'm only 66kg, so I think it would be no problem, what do you think? Should I go for it without CushCore or no? I have front Assegai kevlar tubeless ready but my rear is DHR 2 Dh casing not tubeless-ready.


bigquotes
Consider no more, you should absolutely go tubeless...especially if your bike is as close to being ready for it as it sounds. Tubeless is really the best way for most riders to get more performance out of their bike by giving their tires a better feel through the ability to run lower air pressures, which increases traction, increased protection in the event of a puncture, and it's less weight. Now, if you're going to set it up tubeless and then let your bike sit and not ride it (you know who you are), the sealant will eventually dry up and fail to work. Older tires that don't fit tightly on the rim or seep sealant also present problems, so keep that in mind but, if you ride much at all tubeless is the way to go.

Now as far as using tire inserts goes, I weigh a bit more than you and rarely use any sort of a tire insert. Inserts are good for a lot of things, and may keep you from dinging your rims and getting pinchflats at lower pressures, especially when you're riding really technical terrain, but they do add rotational weight and are more challenging to set up. They also offer the benefit of keeping the tires standing up a bit more when you're going into turns. Personally, I typically opt for a heavier duty casing tire before considering an insert.

The bottom line? I think you'll be totally fine as is, without a CushCore and if I were you, I wouldn't fuss with it - especially for riding flowy trails. You may end up being able to get that rear tire set up with just some sealant but, I'd always recommend using a tubeless-ready tire...insert or not.

Eurobike 2018
Tire inserts can offer some rim protection and other benefits but if you cut your tire, you cut your tire. I'll almost always opt out of the extra weight.




Problems Jumping

Question: @itay123 asks in the Downhill Forum: Hey guys, I’ve been biking for some time now but my area has a lack of real jumps. As such, whenever I go to bike parks I notice I tend to case most jumps at best, and far more often than I would like I feel my feet come off the pedals. Any advice on keeping them planted and getting a little further to clear the jumps?


bigquotesThis is an issue a ton of people have and if you ask around, you're bound to get a lot of different advice. I decided to get the word from someone who is no stranger to jumping and coaches people on how to get in the air daily, Walker Shaw.

Walker suggests, "One thing that I feel really helps get the comfort level higher on bigger jumps is practicing bunny hopping. This could be done around the neighborhood or anywhere really. Bunny hopping with flat pedals and not relying on your suspension or clip pedals is going to help with bike awareness and is a key fundamental skill as you continue to progress. While "clip" (clipless) pedals may be beneficial when it comes to pedaling efficiency and at times being able to unweight the bike through chattery sections of trail, I don’t see them as something you should ever rely on, especially when jumping.

As far as keeping the feet on the pedals, I would play around with different shoe and pedal combos to find what works best for you. The mix of grip and comfort is important as being able to feel the pedal underneath you can help you feel at one with the bike."

Photo by Mack Faint
Bunny hop practice can pay off. Photo by Mack Faint




NX or GX or?

Question: @RonB asks in the All Mountain, Enduro & Cross-Country Forum: Hi! Looking for some user feedback. I am currently riding a 2019 full susp with 1x NX drivetrain. No issues with it, but see a lot of good, bad and ugly being said about that line. Is the GX line that much better? Would I benefit from upgrading to GX, or should I consider going a step higher? I am NOT a basher, speed demon, or jumper.... just an old man that enjoys riding most everything and wants things to work good. Thanks for any assistance! Ron


bigquotes
"If it ain't broke, don't fix it." That certainly can apply here, especially if you're happy with what you're running but at some point, you're going to eventually wear out some components of that drivetrain. Is it worth upgrading? I find that the GX does shift ever so slightly better, as it should, but it's a marginal gain. The big upgrade there is going to be that it's lighter, and you'll also get a MatchMaker compatible shifter, which will make it easier to get that cockpit setup just how you like it. Go on up to the XO1 and, you guessed it, even lighter and a much nicer shifter.

One thing to keep in mind is that with the NX group you're using, the cassette works with a HG (Shimano style) freehub body and the GX uses SRAM's XD driver. At the very least you'll have to switch out the freehub bodies on your hub, and that's if you can interchange them. It's not always cheap. At worst, you're looking at a new rear wheel with a compatible hub.

It's also certainly worth looking at Shimano's HG compatible drivetrains. Their SLX or XT systems offer a lot of performance for the price but, you're not going to have as wide of a range in the back without going to their new Microspline freehub body and, you guessed it, that's not the same as HG.

The bottom line is you have some options but, without upgrading that freehub body, you're going to be limited to a more entry-level cassette or a smaller gear range than you currently have. That's not to say you can't upgrade the rest of the drivetrain and stick with a NX cassette, but your biggest performance gains will come from a nicer cassette, so invest wisely.

The NX cassette mounts to a standard HG freehub body where the fancier SRAM cassettes use their XD freehub.




Is a 58-degree head tube angle too slack?

Question: @Tripmo asks in the Downhill forum: Hello guys, I just finished my mullet setup on my bike. I used one of those phone apps to measure my headtube angle, it's around 58.6ish. So roughly I have a 58-59 degree headtube angle. Is this too slack that can make my frame snap? Little worried.


bigquotes
What was your head angle before? Looking at the numbers, if you only put a smaller rear wheel on the bike I would have expected the head angle to change by 2-degrees or so, which would mean that you started with a sub-62 degree head angle, which is already very slack. I'd start by re-measuring to confirm that number. If you're on a DH bike, you can run the crown of your fork low as possible (measure this) or consider reducing the travel of the fork by 10mm or so to level things out a bit and get a more reasonable geometry. You could also use angle adjusting headset cups to steepen things up to a less extreme number.

Going that slack on a DH bike with a dual crown fork isn't as concerning as it would be on a single crown trail bike, but along with the potential for sub-par handling on everything except the steepest tracks, I'd also be worried about the extra stress on the headtube, and on the fork's performance. Grim Donut aside, there is a point at which things get too slack, and you may have passed it.

The easiest solution is to stick the proper wheel back on the bike and have a worry-free ride; at the very least I'd look into the various ways to bring that head angle back over 60-degrees.

The Grim Donut was designed around a 57-degree HTA. It's extreme and we still don't know if it works.





194 Comments

  • 63 9
 Cant say I agree on the tyre inserts tbh, yes they are tricky to install and they add a little extra weight but they are life savers for me. I smashed a reserve rim on my second ride out with no inserts. Now I smash tech trails without having to worry about damaging my wheels. Yeah maybe an alloy wheel will stand up to the abuse more and not fail like a Carbon wheel. You are defo going to be smacking them hard enough, especially if you are running lower pressures to maximise grip in the slippery tech stuff. So its tyre inserts or die for me. Unless its just flowy simple stuff, fair enough.
  • 13 4
 Totally agree with this. I'm not a heavy rider and run pretty normal tyre pressures (23/27) but I seem to destroy rims like crazy! Running inserts has allowed me to get waaaay more life out of my rims, and I can't live without them now! I'd recommend them to everyone except XC weight weenies....Especially if you are a quick rider and ride a lot of techy/rocky trails...
  • 8 10
 @its-joe: I trashed an alloy rim through Cushcore, dh tires and similar pressures. The only difference I’ve found with cushcore is that this rim I’ve trashed still manages to hold air, but another one I destroyed doesn’t. I still have to run decently high pressures and dh tires with cushcore to not flat on tech.
  • 16 6
 If you’re breaking carbon, alloy wheels would have suffered catastrophic damage as well (at least speaking about contemporary, quality carbon).
  • 3 1
 @TheSlayer99: I don't have any experience with cushcore so I can't comment on them, but my vittoria inserts paired with maxxis DD tyres have been nothing short of brilliant for me!
  • 4 3
 @its-joe: the vittoria inserts basically remove all the air volume from the tire, I heard shameus powell talk about them and he seemed to be a fan.
  • 6 29
flag Mattntp (Jul 21, 2020 at 13:04) (Below Threshold)
 @TheSlayer99: I also trashed many aluminum rims with cushcore. I ended up giving away the cushcores. Cushcore is a good way to make your bike heavier and your wallet lighter, but they don't live up to their claims on rim protection, and damping or sidewall support claims are dubious at best.
  • 11 3
 @TheSlayer99: I am sure you are smashing them less with Cushcore though right? Yeah you can still destroy a rim but its less likely to occur
  • 9 1
 @Mattntp: Interesting I think, so many Enduro riders use them, if they didnt live up to their claims I am sure that wouldnt be the case.
  • 2 2
 @Imabigboy82: not really. Same pressures, same tires, 2 smashed rims on the same trail.
  • 3 1
 Huck Norris is super easy to install.
  • 11 3
 @TheSlayer99: So many in the EWS use them, ill go with this as a measure of how effective they are..
  • 10 0
 i was on the Cushcore-hater-train for years until i destroyed 3 rims in the span of a couple months. that was 2 years ago and i think ive killed one rim since then. and the feel of the rear tire through rocks is so much improved. i dont notice the weight penalty. other than the money and difficulty in putting them in, i dont see a downside. its a gamechanger.
  • 6 0
 @Imabigboy82: how many are sponsored by them? I don't disagree though....they seem to be used by several, although I think Sam Hill runs the Nukeproof inserts which are significantly cheaper/lighter....but again, he gets paid to say that....
  • 13 2
 All I know is I got faster after I installed Cushcore. Provides a little extra suspension, and made a big difference in my cornering speed. Also, the ability to run lower air pressure is a traction game changer on wet or ultra gnarly tracks.

Pain in the butt to install at first, but I won’t go back to just regular tubeless ever again.
  • 4 1
 @RadBartTaylor: yeah there is defo a bit of that involved and I'm not suggesting other inserts aren't any good. Just saying that Cushcore are good at what they do thats all. Thats from my experience riding with them and hearing reviews from others as well as EWS etc
  • 12 6
 @Imabigboy82: Enduro riders use them because they can finish a stage with a flat tire, usually without destroying the rim or tire. For non racers they make less sense because you still risk ruining your tire or rim if you ride it flat, with or without an insert.

I ran cushcore on my enduro bike for a season. The dampening felt nice, and it did feel more supportive in the corners, but it wasn’t worth the downsides.

- I could not run less pressure without denting the rim and snake biting more often (pinching bites right through the insert like it’s made of peanut butter)
- The weight was VERY noticeable.
- They are a PITA to mount.
- I got more sidewall tears (on Double Downs) using cushcore. Maybe it was just bad luck, but I had only torn one DD sidewall without an insert, ever. With inserts that summer, I had THREE SIDEWALL TEARS!! I believe their “sidewall support” comes at a price.
  • 6 2
 @mrosie: exactly. Use them in a race because it might mean you finish your run but to slog them around everywhere you go is just ridiculous. Especially if you’re just out with your mates and what’s the point in carbon rims if you have to stick inserts in them to make them useable? I use wtb asymmetric 35mm with dh tyres and the puncture count is so low that it’s just not worth the extra weight. My mate got a puncture tonight but that’s the first one any of us had got this year.
  • 5 3
 @thenotoriousmic: There are many benefits to carbon beyond weight dude. Also I'm not slogging them around, I don't notice the weight at all and they are not making me slower. But you go ahead and believe what you like dude. If you don't get punctures or damage wheels then great you don't need them. Might also be where you guys ride as well?
  • 4 8
flag thenotoriousmic (Jul 21, 2020 at 14:36) (Below Threshold)
 @Imabigboy82: there’s not a single one except weight. That’s it’s only strength yet you have to run an insert because otherwise they cut holes in your tyres or crack where most of the time a alloy wheel will dent and probably not even leak. They have a nicer feel and track the ground better as well.
  • 3 1
 100% from imasmallguy - inserts were a game changer for ride quality, durability and the option of just riding flat if near the end of the ride. Also not getting cuts like I use to and not destroying rims so there’s that too
  • 5 1
 @thenotoriousmic: really, so everything they say about Carbon is a myth then ok.... back on point isn't about Carbon or Alloy its about inserts and the benefits of which I still believe outweigh any of the cons. As I say good for you for not needing them, interested to know where you ride though.
  • 2 1
 @TheSlayer99:
Love my Vittoria inserts. I was able to ride a flat that was to damaged for sealant for 2 miles even though it was much slower. Faster than walking.
  • 4 4
 @mrosie: I think even the sidewall support is overrated. Sure the tire will 'feel less squirmy' if you're running low pressures. However, I've found when it comes to actually rolling/folding tires in berms CC does very little and going to a stiffer casing is more effective at the same total weight.
  • 8 6
 isnt proper air pressure easier? lol
  • 2 0
 @jeremy3220: You’re probably right, though I never tried to test the “real vs perceived” difference in support myself.
  • 9 0
 Pick a method of running your tires pneumatically and be a dick about it.

amidoingitright?
  • 1 0
 I cracked my rear Reserve wheel two weeks ago going down some rocks. I run 29psi in the rear, but also weight about 200lbs with my pack. Waiting on a replacement wheel and will try CushCore in it this time.
  • 3 3
 @TheSlayer99: Cush Cores are really designed as a suspension component, and they definitely help certain tires not squirm when cornering. They are not really rim protectors, at least not their primary job. Huck Norris has been a real rim saver for my friend who destroys rims all the time. He hasn’t broken rim on them in two months, which sadly is a win for him.
  • 3 1
 @mrosie: I don't know if it's so much real vs perceived as it is how it adds support. Cushcore only contacts part of the sidewall and when the tire is loaded up in a corner it really only supports one side (CC presses outward on each side which doesn't help the side of the tire on the inside of the turn much). The CC pressing outward on the sidewalls makes the tire initially stiffer when starting to turn. It does add some support. However, when the bike is fully leaned over in a turn you're on the cornering knobs that are on the inside of the turn (IOW, in a left turn you're on the left side cornering knobs) but the CC is applying force primary to the other side of the tire. This allows the tread and sidewall around the cornering knobs to deform. In my experience running CCPro and CCXC in multiple tires you will feel more support zigzagging down a trail that may otherwise cause slight squirm, however when it comes to hitting berms and compressions as hard as possible the tires fold at nearly the same pressure (within 1-2 psi) regardless of whether or not I'm running an insert, and tire stiffness makes a bigger difference in this type of situation.
  • 3 2
 @mrosie: I run cushcore but those downsided apply mainly to cushcore.
Vittoria airliner is much more protective. Cushcore is designed as a suspension device.
  • 1 0
 Nukeproof inserts are the best 40 quid I've spent on my bike. Adds stability to the sidewall and prevents flats what more do you want.
  • 2 0
 Never done this despite years of riding. Yes I have occasionally dinged a rim but that’s it. I don’t see the point of having light carbon rims if you then have to add heavy inserts into the worst possible place on a bike
  • 2 0
 I totally agree with Pinkbike on this one.
I know inserts work well for some riders on some trails, but it DEFINITELY shouldn't be a "go to" product to install if you're dinging rims on a regular basis. It should be seen as a solution, not an upgrade, and the penalties are significant enough to not install one as a preemptive measure for most riders from the get go.
  • 2 0
 @foxinsocks: yeah 100%, if you ride flowy trails every day they are defo not needed. If you are smashing rock gardens, roots etc and you weigh 210 pounds like I do they do a good job on saving rims for sure.
  • 1 0
 @Imabigboy82: no everything they say about carbon rims is true that’s why hardly anyone uses them but they’re a good money maker so companies are still pushing them. They sell them for thousands and they’re made for next to nothing in China on the cheap.
  • 4 0
 @thenotoriousmic: LeL, Most Enduro or DH rated rims in carbon aren't lighter anyway. I only know one rim who is lighter to their AL counterpart and even those are pretty light.

If you never ridden a carbon wheel you can't say they are only lighter. It is more then that. Easily to build up and true, oblivious. The feeling of thestiffness is so much better.
That said I smacked my carbonara rim after 5minutes...
  • 1 1
 @Serpentras: but you don’t want a stiff wheel. It needs to flex. It’s part of your suspension, that stiffness stops them flexing so they don’t track as well. They wash out.
  • 2 0
 @thenotoriousmic: I never notice them washing out.... and ive been riding them hard enough to break them lol.
  • 1 0
 @Imabigboy82: judging by your user name there’s a good chance your on the heavier end of the scale so yeah they might be perfect for you. If you’re a big lad on a 29er they’ve definitely got their advantages to be fair. So yeah you’re right.
  • 2 0
 @thenotoriousmic: You want laterally stiff wheels so they track better. Same concept as fork stiffness, you don't want it deflecting left and right (which subsequently means the wheel is deflecting left and right relative to the bars). Now, radial stiffness is another matter but so far none of my carbon wheels have felt radially stiffer than alloy.
  • 1 0
 @makkelijk: That’s good to know, thank you. I may have to give those a try.
  • 1 0
 @thenotoriousmic: Think Ben Cathro with a little more meat on the bone haha
  • 1 0
 @Imabigboy82: Tyson Fury, is that you?
  • 1 0
 @thenotoriousmic: I own carbon and alloy wheelsets for the same bike. I'm well aware of the differences.
  • 46 2
 at this point we've been teased so hard with the donut that the hype has died away, clearly it is faster to make your own grim donut rather than wait for a video of it (as it has been proven more than once)
  • 24 1
 Fuck the grim donut. Me and my homies hate the grim donut
  • 8 0
 #GrimDonutGate
  • 38 1
 Jump guy needs to focus on his preload instead of pulling up. PRESS into the jump as you hit it, time it so that you're coming out of the "press" at the lip of the jump so that both of your wheels are essentially weightless right as they come off the lip (weightless wheels off the lip leads to being neutral and in-control in the air).

Every action has an equal and opposite reaction right? The action is pressing into the jump face, like a spring coiling. The reaction is getting lots of "pop" and clearing jumps with no problem. It's all about the preload my friend. Like a trampoline.
  • 7 0
 Precisely. Meet the jump with equal force. Sounds like he's hanging on and letting the jump have it's way with him, compressing his legs, only for his legs to extend and push the bike away after going off the lip.. Compress on the lip, and release before the bike goes off the lip, so it's headed upward and it'll stay with you. Easier to practice on smaller jumps, so you don't feel like you're risking too much.. send the small ones to flat, then work on the bigger ones. You'll get there, man!
  • 8 0
 @shrockie: yeah smaller jumps to practice but I'd also recommend trying thing them as slow as possible without casing. I.e. figure out the technique with enough speed to definitely clear then try doing the jumps slower and boosting to clear.

I'm amazed how slow I can clear some tabletops now that I'd case going mach speed before. Once it clicks jumps are so much more fun.
  • 13 6
 Nail on the head!

Another tip for beginner riders, don't watch to youtube "how to" videos! I see so many new riders getting into all sorts of trouble because they watched a f*cking GMBN video telling them to bunnyhop off a lip! Just go out and practise, or even better, go with a more experienced rider who can watch what you do and help point out any issues etc...
  • 3 0
 I tell anyone that asks how to jump better the same thing Shaw said. Most people don't see the connection and don't have the patience to put in the bunnyhopping practice and and would rather try to remember five things as they approach a lip because they want instant change. They don't see how bunnyhopping translates to getting air on a jump, but it's about controlling your bike rather than being a dead-sailor passenger in the air. Learning to bunnyhop up, over, and off this, that, and everything else makes it so you don't have to think about pushing, pressing, unweighting this, leaning this or that way... it just happens because your bike-in-air awareness has been groomed through practice.
  • 1 0
 ... or just let the ibis do the job!
  • 22 1
 Not all tire inserts are equal. Personally, I would not run them just to protect rims. But CushCore alters ride feel and actually influences how the tire acts as suspension. Other tire inserts do not do this.
It’s really important to differentiate between tire inserts that protect rims, and those that actually improve tire damping, reduce compression & rebound spikes, and support corner knobs.
I would agree if the recommendation were about tire inserts, but CushCore is different.
  • 3 0
 bang on!
  • 3 2
 Both Panzer and Rimpact do the same thing now, with less weight and cost.
  • 4 0
 I'm only one park ride in on CushCore but this is a good way to put it. Rim protection and the option of lower pressures was a factor in getting them, but the most immediately noticeable thing was vibration from brake bumps being drastically reduced, and even in CO moon dust I was able to corner a lot more aggressively and confidently. The weight penalty does not seem significant, maybe the same as tubes, but I will say in a way it "feels" heavier when contacting the ground because the tires have less bounce.
  • 4 1
 @turco999: you have any objective data to support this? Or just marketing claims? I would love to see some unbiased data.
  • 2 3
 @erikkellison:

A few simple Google searches later:

Cushcore 29er-250g (2 inserts+valves=$210CAD)
Rimpact Pro 29er-160g (2 inserts+ valves was $150CAD shipped for me)
Panzer 29er-115g( price for 2 inserts+valves+sealant seems to be around $175CAD shipped)

I have the Rimpact Pros. My buddy has Cushcore. The only noticeable difference is the thicker foam density of the Cushcore. You can run slightly lower pressures (depending in your weight/ riding style) with Cush vs Rimpact. Aside from that, they both decrease tire roll, increase sidewall support, and protect your rim well. Can't speak on the Panzer.
  • 1 0
 @turco999: the objective data to which I was referring was data on sidewall support, reduced intensity of compression spikes, slowed tire rebound, etc.
I suppose price is also objective. Sorry I wasn’t cleared. To be clear: I do not care about pricing. I want data on performance.
  • 2 0
 Currently running Cushcore (standard not the XC model) on 160mm bike and NukeProof ARD 140mm bike. Both definitely provide a better ride quality but the cushcore seems to work a little better but does weight about 100 grams more per wheel.
  • 1 1
 @turco999: +1 for Rimpact
  • 1 1
 @erikkellison: Wouldn't all insert work in a similar method as far as compression spikes. These work like volume spacers in a fork. So it would all come down to the volume that they take up in a tire if they take up the same volume they would work the same.
  • 2 0
 @mfoga: no. Good info on CushCore’s website, and a couple podcasts (Dowtime, Inside Line). They worked w/ Motion Industries for DataAq. It’s more than simply changing tire volume - has to do with pressure on the sidewall and compressibility of foam, too. Interesting science, or at least it seems. Also haven’t managed to burp a single tire, even with a flat and trying to burp.
  • 1 2
 @erikkellison: wow you took all that hook line and sinker. I would bet all of those have a very minimal difference maybe 1-2 % max. The foam could have the biggest difference. Unless they can show very specific data showing how it has a big difference i am not going to buy all that they are over 4x time better than say nukeproof ard.
  • 2 0
 @mfoga: na, try Schwalbe ProCore , there it's only protection and no burps but it fells the same as without. Not on the uphill ...
  • 2 1
 @mfoga: we scientists like and respond to data more than marketing BS and unsupported claims (how long have people been saying look noodles are just as good?), but we do expect experience to map on with data. For me, and more people who have tried CushCore, experience matches data. Unless other companies can show similar effects, I will not consider switching because “trail feel” is too subjective a measure to pretend like it’s a valid measure to compare CC to followers/imitators. It’s interesting to see how emotion enters a debate that shouldn’t be emotional at all. But hey, if you don’t want to try it, that doesn’t have an impact on MY ability to ride.
I would gladly bet against you on this one.
If, however, others can achieve similar damping results, I’m all for it. Innovation and competition are good things because yeah, CC is pretty pricey for some well-shaped, fancy foam.
  • 1 0
 @erikkellison: The mtb market is so niche that we can't expect there to be 3rd party data extrapolation for every bike part (as much as both of us would probably want that). Im willing to bet too that the difference between CC and Rimpact Pro in most fields are so small that both you and I won't notice while riding. The only definitive difference I have personally found is the thicker foam density of Cushcore allows it to absorb compression spikes better.

But what about the weight factor? 100g less in each wheel of unsprung mass and rotational weight would theoretically lead to suspension gains. But is it really enough for us notice in a blind test?
  • 13 0
 RE the head tube angle, the phone may very well have been lying to you...I measured my stock bike (which had a 67.5 HTA according to Specialized) with my phone and it came out somewhere in the neighborhood of 62.
  • 10 0
 The floor may not be level. One too is to turn the bike around and measure again, then the mid point of the two results is the true angle
  • 1 0
 Tip*
  • 2 0
 in addition to the level ground, you could also measure the ground its on and subtract that angle. Also, measuring the outside of the head tube can lead to mis-leading figures. As most head tubes are tapered, it creates an angle that is not on the same axis as the steerer tube axis. Or on level ground, try measuring the fork lowers angle and not the head tube angle. The fork lowers are usually not tapered and on the same axis as the steerer tube.
  • 1 0
 @neons97: this was my thought exactly
  • 1 0
 @neons97: stanchion angle is most accurate because they can’t be tapered.
  • 1 0
 @erikkellison: is the stanchion parallel with steer tube? i would think so but if i found out it was a couple degrees off for some reason, i also wouldn't be surprised
  • 2 0
 The angle of the dangle is inversely proportional to the heat of the meat, provided that the maxis of the axis, and the gravity of the cavity remain constant.
  • 1 0
 @twonsarelli: yes. Always yes. If it’s not, don’t ride that fork.
  • 1 0
 @erikkellison: cool. That’s a great trick then. Way better than assuming your head tube isn’t tapered slightly
  • 14 0
 Im now riding with tubes, inserts, stans and rim strips. can never be too careful
  • 1 0
 I use just bacon.
  • 10 0
 Don't forget that the GX 7 speed DH still uses the HG freehub NOT the XD as I found out the hard (expensive) way when ordering new wheels for my GX equipped DH bike...... Change the standard, mix the standard, lose the standard, chaos is the only standard.
  • 1 0
 Yep. 200 USD difference between the GX DH cassette and the XO.
  • 1 0
 @Yerts: $300 of you already owned the GX and thought it was XD because you hadn’t actually taken the old wheel apart before you ordered the new one. I googled “GX cassette driver” and was told “XD” forgetting to specify DH. *facepalm*
  • 9 1
 CushCore at its Core is a suspension product, rim protection and reduced pinch flats are an added benefit. I have been running them this year on my 2020 Norco Sight and love them. I had a wrist injury a few years ago that has seemed to nag on and since I had the Cush Core installed I have noticed a substantial difference of the vibration at my hands resulting in much less hand a wrist fatigue. I am not one that ever really ever had a issue with flatting or smashing wheels but i will continue to run them for the suspension benefits alone.
  • 1 0
 This. Cush Core helped my carpel tunnel quite a bit by reducing vibration. However, I did end up destroying a carbon rim with them in so I guess it’s important to figure out what your needs are before you decide which tire inserts to get.
  • 12 0
 Can I have stickers?
  • 26 1
 No
  • 8 1
 Another huge advantage to CushCore is that if you do end up flatting, you can ride out. You obviously wont be riding at normal speed but you can roll down the rest of the trail at the very least. Kind of eliminates the need for carrying tubes imo. Also, GX>NX but XT>GX & XO....
  • 4 1
 The GX is a joke i destroyed 2 of them and broke 3 B links. I guess it is XC only. Bought a Zee and it is working perfectly with a X0 shifter. No more Sram for me it is expensive and not designed to last.
  • 7 0
 To the guy with the NX, the smart answer is to keep the NX. It works perfectly fine and you probably won't notice a big difference switching to GX. But the correct answer is always upgrade!
  • 17 5
 or get deore
  • 3 0
 Yup. Even derailleurs are just another consumable. Upgrade when it breaks!
  • 4 0
 @DaFreerider44: that's what he said...upgrade.
  • 1 0
 @racerfacer: Exactly. Ride the shit components that come spec'd on your bike till they break. Nobody will want to buy new take-off NX parts on buy and sell...
  • 6 0
 I’ve found that working on doubling up rollers at a pump track has made me way better at jumping on my full suspension bike. Casing jumps on the DJ feels pretty rough, and you quickly learn that it’s worth making sure you make it to the transition.
  • 5 1
 Cushcore is awesome, I use it on my XC and Enduro bikes. I've played around with a few setups but I mostly prefer it only in the rear wheel. It let's me run lower pressures and stops me from nuking rims, which was pretty common before. It adds compliance/grip from the lower pressure, a nice muted feel over rocks, and a ton of security for your rim. And honestly they're not very hard to setup or remove. If you're riding trails with high speed chunk, it's completely worth it
  • 7 1
 Tannus Armour inserts with tubes are a way easier way to go! Benefits of tubeless without having to do any tubeless setup.
  • 3 0
 Bought and paid for in November. Could arrive any minute now. So stoked! (Was wise enough to not hold my breath...)
  • 7 1
 That was the selling point for me... Unfortunately mine got completely squashed after less than a month of everyday use.
Yep, just checked them, still the same 2-4mm thick tire "liner" sitting in the corner waiting to be thrown out.
No more foam characteristics and let's just forget that "you can ride home with a flat" claim.

They were already on the way when I read on their faq page that once installed the tires need to be deflated every day to avoid the squashing.
One of the worst mtb product I ever purchased. Sorry to break it to you.
  • 2 0
 @rawrr: what part of the faq did you get that once installed the tires need to be deflated every day?

The faq I see is as follows:

"The armour will compress some after it’s installed depending on the pressure of the tire. The higher the psi the more condensed the Armour will become. If you wish to keep the Armour as thick as possible then maintain a lower psi. You may also deflate your tire if you’re not going to be riding for a longer period. This allows the Armour to rebound back to its original size."

tannusamerica.com/pages/tannus-faq
  • 3 0
 I like my Tannus.
  • 4 0
 @vinay: Hey! Where are you out of? We haven't had any other complaints on that, so let's get you sorted ASAP.
  • 2 0
 @rawrr: Sorry to hear it man! If it helps, our first run of product had a bit of a compression issue, but that was resolved with our second batch. And we put the "deflate every day" as a precaution to cover our bums, but honestly we'd only recommend it every few months. This allows it to get back to its original shape and rides like it was when it was new.

If you feel like you were shafted, email our UK guys at Tannus.com and they'll get you sorted!
  • 1 0
 @Tannus: Hey do you guys have a New Zealand distributor?
  • 2 0
 Finished a week of riding bike park with 5 dudes last week. All but one was on tannus, and he had the one flat we had all trip. So worth the money.
  • 1 0
 Agreed, these are the way foward, cheap and no mess. I've been running them for over a year now with no issues. That includes managing 4 days riding at Fort William for the National DH series, with 28psi rear and not getting a single flat all weekend! I've got them in both sets of wheels now and I've set half of my mates on them, who are loving them so far too.
  • 1 0
 @Tannus: Hi Tannus, my order is TS/SO383 placed October 17th. Would be cool to receive it someday. Have sent reminders November 28th and May 29th but unfortunately haven't seen any response. I was supposed to receive the Armour for 26x2.4" tires.
  • 2 0
 @vinay: Awesome! Where are you out of? We'll get this figured out with the crew in charge of your area. Thanks!
  • 1 0
 @Tannus: Cool! I live in The Netherlands. My contact there was/is Remco Willekus. On October 21th he did give me an update that there was a huge demand and that there was a three week delay for my stuff as it was being shipped from Korea. Unfortunately I haven't heard/received anything since. Would be cool if you could look into this!
  • 1 0
 @vinay: Alright, we'll get it covered. Sorry about the confusion!
  • 1 0
 @Tannus: I noticed you recently released a new Tannus Armour version, though unfortunately not compatible with my 26" wheels. Do you still have a stock of 26x2.4 Tannus Armour to fulfill my order from October? Cheers!
  • 3 0
 Re: tire inserts, I'd add the caveat that it depends on how rocky and gnarly the trails you ride are. I run a cushcore at the back, which has definitely helped with avoiding rim damage from smacking rocky edges and the like.
  • 3 0
 To me, there is a big step between NX and GX. GX is much lighter than NX. There are smaller gaps in terms of weight and performance between GX, X01, and XX1. In my opinion, GX is best bang for the buck, but can still mix and match with X01 and XX1.
  • 3 0
 I disagree with the very last statement about nx,gx,xo1. The xo1 shifter can make the lower groups perform much better than anything else. Keep the nx cassette, maybe get a gx derailleur, and definitely get the xo1 shifter. This would be the best bang for your buck, and you dont have to get a new wheel or freehub body. That being said, go and grab your current cassette on the bike. Grab it on opposite sides of the 50t. Try to rock it side to side like you're trying to pry it off the hub. If there is much lateral play, like more than 2mm at the 50t, then I do agree with replacing the wheel for something with a tighter freehub body. That lateral play makes the needed tight tolerances for good shifting just not exist. Nothing will be much better on a hub like that. Nice hubs have zero lateral freehub rocking...and that makes a huge difference in shift quality regardless of what group is on it. If your hub is wobbly, get a new wheel, gx derailleur and an xo1 shifter. That would be remarkably better.
  • 2 0
 Nice tip.
  • 3 0
 Running two sets of wheels and tires on my Ripmo 2. Set one is set up heavy for enduro with Assegai front/DHR rear and Cush Core in both. Set two is about 2 1/2 lbs lighter, Schwalbe Nobby Nic/Hans Dampf with no inserts. Since most of my local trails are high flow/low tech I run the lighter set most days. When it gets a little chunkier, I pop on the set up with the Cush Cores and have to say, I really do prefer that combo. The suspension feels even more plush, traction is better (yes, the tires are part of that for sure), and I somehow feel faster despite the added weight. It really rips through the gnar, too - all puns intended. My two cents: two sets of wheels, run both.
  • 5 1
 Forget GX. Deore 12 speed works better than XX1, and it’s cheap enough you can spring for the dedicated driver to make the cassette work. If you want it to work a little better, splurge for an XT shifter.
  • 7 2
 Aw man, you reminded us of the grim donut again. Now you’ve really got to get going on that sequel.
  • 11 0
 It's the Duke Nukem Forever of the MTB world...
  • 3 0
 PB is totally trolling us at this point.
  • 1 1
 Grim Donut is coming this week! You read it here first!
  • 2 0
 @g-42: half life 3 confirmed
  • 6 1
 Bunny hopping is not how you learn the jumps pictured. Not in the slightest.
  • 2 0
 He meant that bunnyhopping was a good way to learn how to keep your pedals in contact with your feet. Which is true. The OP's feet kept coming off the pedals (which really means his pedals are coming away from his feet).
  • 2 0
 Rode cushcore for a while. Honestly did not feel much of a traction benefit compared to simply a dh tire with air. Rotational weight was an issue and made leaning the bike over in corners more difficult, sometimes would under because of this. Definately more stable in straightline sections though
  • 1 0
 I've gone back and forth from tubes and tubeless, but tubeless always rides better. I've also discovered that replacing rim tape occasionally is worth it to avoid leaks and using the widest tape option for your specific rims helps too. I've done it enough now that I can air them up using a hand pump instead of an air compressor 9/10 times.
  • 3 2
 @ItsMartY - I used CushCore for about 6 months, then took them out and gave them away. Too much effort installing and removing every few weeks as I chewed up tires. But there are other insert options. Huck Norris, especially the latest revision, are decent and I have them in three sets of wheels.

But there is a much better insert that does prevent tire sharts (they don't burp, they sound like a fart and there is a liquid mess), rim dings, and are very light weight - the NukeProof Advanced Rim Defence (A.R.D). These are awesome, I have them in two sets of wheels. www.pinkbike.com/news/first-look-nukeproof-adr-tire-inserts.html

I know that Vittoria and a couple of other companies have similar products, but at $35 from Chain Reaction, you can't beat the setup, price, and value. And they come with the tubeless valves too.
  • 1 0
 Just checked, $39 at today's exchange rate.
  • 2 0
 I've had 2 ARDs and I've been happy with their performance but both stretched to the point that they were audibly rattling around inside the tire. I cut 4cm (!) out of them and zip tied them back together on the rim to get them back to original size. From what I've read, this is fairly common, and worth mentioning. I'll still recommend them, considering the price.
  • 1 0
 Just how many wheel sets do you have?
Must be nice to be able to ride so much that you wear out tires in a matter of weeks!
  • 1 1
 Sorry, ARD doesn't work right. As mentioned they stretch, and once you shorten them they stretch right back out again. The foam also contacts the tire, which immediately begins coagulating your tire sealant, so they are basically incompatible with sealant. Cush core doesn't have these issues, and I don't find them that difficult to deal with vs ARD either. The price of ARD is good, but the issues are a deal breaker for me.
  • 1 1
 @davec113: I've been running ARDs for over a year, and everything you say is not my experience.

The CushCore I purchased were bought and first installed in their Bend, OR office. Nice folks, a great idea for motorcycles, but ridiculous for everyday trail riders.
  • 1 0
 @erikkellison: I have three mountain bikes and six sets of wheels between them. I ride un-groomed trails composed of basaltic lava. Lots of square and sharp rocks. It is nice having thousands of acres of BLM land less than a half-mile from my door.

BTW - the only reason I have so many wheels is two spacing standards (boost and non-boost) and slow arrival of warranty parts. It does give me a good test/check of parts to compare. I ride XXL frames because of my size, and I break stuff regularly. My newest bike, a 2019 model, has every part except the frame and headset either replaced or modified because of wear and damage.
  • 2 0
 I could never get NX to work right on my bike so I took it apart and the rear derailleur came off in three pieces, that's how it was designed, a total piece of junk. Got XO and have done nothing but lube the chain.
  • 1 0
 What about NX vs the newer SX? Any big differences there?

Not a big SRAM guy, but very often have friends asking me if the SX/NX price jump is worthwhile. Is it just another weight penalty, or are there significant performance factors? Personal opinions? I know deore to SLX has some significant advantages (like hollowtech cranks) but finding clear info on the new quietly released SRAM stuff was a little tricky.
  • 1 1
 SX is pretty much garbage, it’s just a “LOOK AT ME I AM COOL I HAVE 12 SPEEDS” type groupset. The derailleur is entirely plastic, shifter is wobbly....overall not fun.
  • 2 1
 The tire insert solution is to get Cushcore XC. They're super easy to install and the setup still weighs less than running tubes. I've noticed a smoother ride and better cornering. They say they max out at a 2.4 tire, but they work for me on 2.5.
  • 1 0
 @Mattntp: completely disagree with this. As I have become a convert after having smoked many alloy rims and was recommended to try cushcore by many friends that shred/race at the pro level. Have only found their products to provide exactly what they offer. If you are running pressures in the teens, then sure, you’re probably going to have some issues.
  • 3 1
 Sub 60 isn't good for the fork, bushing loading increases resistance and give you premature wear and increased stiction. Probably.
  • 3 0
 Not if you are riding down 45* descents.
  • 8 7
 "The Grim Donut was designed around a 57-degree HTA. It's extreme and we still don't know if it works." literally means they didn't film shit. pinkbike editors are just full of hot air... not getting part 2 anytime soon
  • 6 2
 Or it means they did film it, but results are inconclusive. Perhaps there's major pros and cons that "works" is very subjective to the rider/terrain/intentions.

Just a thought.
  • 8 0
 I'm over with the donut. I'll never forget the 1.April! Razz
  • 2 0
 No need to be so serious, it's just bike stuff.
  • 2 0
 Or they "dont know if it works" because they havent posted the video yet titled "Grim Donut:does it work?!"
  • 2 0
 @Cerrone: i think "works" at this point literally means getting down the hill with the bike still intact lol
  • 3 0
 Why didn’t you answer my question about which are the best mtb underpants?
  • 2 0
 @rickybobby18 has got you covered there
  • 11 0
 @Peskycoots, the answer is Saxx Kinetic HD boxer briefs. Expensive, but worth it. You're welcome.
  • 5 0
 What are underpants? #COMMANDO4LIFE
  • 1 0
 Under Armor boxerjocks aren't too bad. I haven't tried the Saxx though.
  • 3 1
 "If you're not freeballing you're not freeriding"

...is presumably a saying simewhere.
  • 4 1
 Huck Norris, 84G. works just fine. easy to install. I ride DH on my hardtail.
  • 4 0
 Am i the only one who runs 39psi in 26in tubeless ready tires with tubes?
  • 6 0
 ...yes.
  • 3 1
 Man what if people knew that we rode tubeless for years without inserts and never had a second thought until they were invented.
  • 1 1
 That was when our rims were 25mm or less, and the 2.4 (or less width) tires stayed on the rims.
  • 3 1
 whyyyy hasn't there been a Grim Donut part 2? Just give us an explanation pinkbike!!
  • 3 0
 Something ain't right about that 58 degree head angle. . .
  • 3 0
 Obligatory Grim Donut comment
  • 2 0
 1990: is 70 too slack? yes
2000 is 68 too slack? yes
2010: is 64? yes
2020 : is 58 too slack? yes
  • 2 0
 Going tubeless without protection could carry different meaning in AskMen.com
  • 1 0
 :Funny how much they cost so much to try & keep as little air as possible in your tyres?
Put in more air & less likely to need them in the first place?
  • 3 1
 www.rimpactmtb.com
Light, cheap, easy to install.
  • 2 0
 True, but not as protective as Cushcore or as good keeping the tyres seated. Anyway, at 100g they're great options if you climb a lot, and way better at everything than Huck Norris
Below threshold threads are hidden

Post a Comment



Copyright © 2000 - 2020. Pinkbike.com. All rights reserved.
dv65 0.031512
Mobile Version of Website