Schwalbe, Giro, MRP - Sea Otter 2015

Apr 17, 2015
by Mike Kazimer  
Sea OTter 2015
Sea Otter 2015
Schwalbe's Nobby Nic (left) and Rocket Ron will both be available in 27.5 x 2.8" or 3.0" by next fall.

Schwalbe Goes Plus Sized

'What about tires?' That's one of the underlying questions associated with the emergence of 27.5+, because no matter how many benefits supposedly come from running fat tires and wide rims, there's still a need for tires with a more aggressive tread pattern. The wider footprint of a 3.0" tire does provide extra traction, but in truly challenging terrain something more than a warmed over cyclocross tread pattern is necessary. Schwable may have the answer with their 27.5 x 3.0” Nobby Nic, although they're not expected to be available in the aftermarket until this fall. There will be a 2.8” version as well, and the tire will be available in a multitude of casing options – Snakeskin, TL-Easy, and Performance, as well as two compound choices – PaceStar or TrailStar. There's also a wider version of the Rocket Ron in the works that uses Schwalbe's PaceStar Triple compound.


Sea Otter 2015
Sea Otter 2015
A new shape for the AMg's upper guide and bashguard are intended to help make it as unobtrusive as possible.

Refined Retention From MRP

Front derailleurs may be going the way of the dodo, and narrow wide chainrings combined with a clutch derailleur do an incredible job of keeping chains from popping off, but that doesn't mean that there's no need for a chain retention device of some kind, especially for racers who can't afford to waste precious seconds fumbling with a greasy chain. MRP's latest offerings are the result of decades of refinement, and they're lighter, quieter and easier to set up than ever. The updated AMg has a slightly lower profile bashguard to go along with the decreased chainring size that riders are migrating towards, as well as a pared down upper guide that uses a softer plastic on the inside to keep things running silently. The chainring compatibility has changed slightly as well, with one version available for 26-32 tooth chainrings, and another one for rings with 32-38 teeth. The alloy version is available now for $120 USD, and a lighter weight carbon option is on the way that will retail for $170.

MRP's 1x guide is for riders who are looking for chain retention, but don't mind forgoing the bash guard. The 1x also gets the new smaller upper guide, and at only 39 grams for the top of the line direct mount carbon version, the weight penalty is miniscule. Depending on the mounting type and material, the 1x's price ranges from $55 to $115.


Giro Quarter MIPS
Giro Quarter w MIPS
The Quarter is now available with a MIPS liner.


MIPS For the Masses

Giro continues to expand the number of helmets that come with a MIPS liner, and the Quarter is the most recent brain bucket to get the upgrade. For those who aren't familiar with the technology, MIPS (Multi-directional Impact Protection System), is a low friction liner that lets the inner shell of the helmet slide along it during an impact, movement that's intended to reduce the amount of rotational energy that reaches the brain during a crash. What's most impressive about the Quarter, and its youth-sized counterpart the Dime, is that the retail price is $60 USD, which makes it one of the lowest priced MIPS-equipped lids on the market. The skate-style helmet uses an EPS liner with a polyurethane outer to help keep it looking fresh. The Quarter is available in sizes S-L, and the Dime in sizes S and XS, with multiple color options for both.




Be sure to check out all of our Sea Otter Classic images in this gallery.



77 Comments

  • + 118
 Plus sized tires. Please just go away.
  • + 10
 Why don't any of them have any side knobs? Are you not supposed to be able to corner?
  • + 0
 Why though? I think they look like a ball. The perfect in between for a midwesterner that wants to keep riding the trails in wither but doesn't want 5" tires to slow him down as much would love them. I think I fall into that category myself.
  • + 10
 People riding fat bikes are not riding...side nobs aren't required at that speed.
  • - 14
flag rosenbaum-j (Apr 17, 2015 at 20:37) (Below Threshold)
 hasn't anyone learned from Obama, that we need change and look where that got us. he got all my change and the bike companies got the rest. all in all though some change is good where its needed.
  • + 3
 Here we go again... fast bike supremacy, fat bike hating, and the tweener option that promises the best of both worlds.
  • + 4
 The tires aren't inflated all the way, super low psi, so when you lean the tires compress and you make your own side knobs. Neato
  • + 2
 I'm not into fat bikes but I've ridden them a few time, like @zepper said, with the low PSI they actually corner awesome. You get more traction from a tires with much smaller knobs but there's a big rolling resistance penalty because tire pressure is so low.
  • + 3
 Sure they probably corner awesome at slow speeds on hard terrain, but if you want bite on soft ground then you want a narrow tire. Big tires float, its what they do best. Many times that float is not what you want. I often switch between 2.4's and 2.25's because I want a little more bite that narrow tires offer. Not only that but large tires are bouncy, so if you have too much air pressure in them they get unsettled on rough terrain. These have their place and there will be those who will like this stuff, but don't think that fat tires are better than narrow ones.
  • + 1
 I like what the guy from Rocky says in this video: www.bikemag.com/gear/27-bikes I like that he acknowledges that plus sized is good for some things and terrible at others. That's also from my own experimentation with 2.7" and 2.8" tires on a DH bike fifteen+ years ago. Even at that size there were many situations where is was just way too floaty. Often times a 2.2" DH tire was far superior.

Still, no one answers why Boost is better than existing standards. They could easily push a 150mm hub plus 83mm BB and market it as being both stiff because of the hub spacing, and stable because of the width of your foot placement. Its enough that we have planned obsolescence in our electronics (phones), we don't want it in our bikes.
  • + 2
 @shankee3 the smaller knobs compensate for the low rolling resistance of tires like the Knobby Nick, Rocket Ron, and my personal favorite (for racing) the Racing Ralph when low PSI is utilized . Granted I don't use any of the mentioned tires for my regular "fun" riding (or what is categorized these days as "trail" or "all mountain") but tubeless set-ups overall seem to benefit a rider more when the knob factor of a tire is brought into question.if you are not racing, then it's really not an issue: go shred and have fun. if racing, then your tire choice and PSI preference become critical.
  • + 2
 What about just keeping the knobs from tearing off?
  • + 52
 Chain guides may be the single most overpriced bike part. And that's saying something.
  • + 10
 How is the helmet less than the guide insane
  • + 8
 Especially considering most guides fall apart just looking a rock these days
  • + 3
 the carbon one is almost 3 times the price of the helmet. they have got to be kidding us
  • + 31
 Am I the only one who thinks chainguides are important not only to keep your chain on but from smashing your chain and chainring on shit?
  • + 43
 That's what bash guards are for. Chain guides and bash guards are different things.
  • - 3
 I cringe when I see non bash/taco setups riding around. They either don't try to get up/over stuff, or burn through a lot of chainrings.
  • + 6
 Lots of people cling to the idea you don't need a guide for nw. Those are the guys that drop one chain in their race run then whinge about it. I'm with you. I've got a csixx guide that weighs 45g and its nice looking, why would I not run it?
  • + 3
 As far as I'm concerned, NW rings are not always an excuse to not use a guide, just another added layer of defence against dropped chains.
  • + 9
 @ y0bailey: It just means they don't fail at getting up over stuff...
  • + 9
 "A new shape for the AMg's upper guide and bashguard are intended to help make it as unobtrusive as possible" thank God because they were soooo obtrusive before. Said by nobody ever...
  • - 3
 The chainguide portion is clearly a Specialized knockoff.
  • + 1
 I was considering getting this guide. How is the drag in use? I had the cguide before and the drag on the drivetrain was noticeable.
  • + 1
 I don't think there is a drag. Maybe at the largest cog maybe but will probably rub off in a couple of miles.
  • - 3
 That chain guide makes me want to ignore the new e13 AM guide and taco.
Is it me or are you blown away at the micro explosion of new crap?
So much engineering on the little stuff and yet, nothing is really game changing, just slightly more modified, albeit awesome.
Give me a carbon gearbox.
Or something without a modified circa 1800's (yes) derailleur.
Sheesh.
Ok Ok more koolaid please.
  • + 18
 i remember when gazzi 3.0's were the hot ticket, how things have come full circle, next up 29+ front 27.5+ rear
  • + 11
 Except Gazzi's were shaped like this............. HHHHHHHHHH H H H H H H H H H H H HHHHHHHHHHH
  • + 14
 cant wait for 26+
  • + 5
 Yea man 26+ is rhe ticket
  • + 4
 @Game, they already exist check out surly dirt wizards, 26+ Tires
  • + 1
 Gazzi 3's also weighed more in one tire than two of these new ones do.
  • + 2
 That came and went already by 2003. Like mentioned 3.0 Gazzi, or the hot ticket 24+, 24x3.0 front and rear or just rear with 26x3.0 up front.
27.5+ front 26+ rear
  • + 3
 Used many years Michelin 2.8 tires that for my downhill bike was a dream. Rolls fast and grab a lot. Was heavy but I was using with light dh Mavic rims. For downhill race will never work since suspention quality aloud racers to use thinner tires to go faster. I love large volume downhill tires for really kgnarly tracks
  • + 10
 Gripping article. The traction this 27.5+ is getting is incredible!
  • + 1
 i think schwalbe are on a roll with these new tyres.
  • + 10
 Please not the pun thing again.
  • + 20
 Yeah I'm almost two tired to come up with any more puns....
  • - 1
 yeah we really should get a grip on these puns... if not we better saddle up
  • + 2
 Surely you knobs don't think it's punny that knobby nicks & knacks fall off Schwalbes soon as the going gets rocky?
  • + 5
 It's just not punny anymore Frown
  • + 2
 These puns plus the new hub standards are just not BOOSTing my enthusiasm
  • + 22
 While you all wear out your puns I schwalbe out riding my bike.
  • + 10
 those were all good puns but I'd like to sea otter people give this a try.
  • + 1
 This are the daddiest jokes, I dont have any child yet, but as soon as I get one I wheel start making puns on pinkbike too
  • + 1
 These puns are just going around and around
  • + 4
 We all should wait and don't buy any of the new stuff, than they reach the point, where the bike standards came to the final point and your new bike doesn't come old the next day.
  • + 1
 My bike has been "old" since I purchased it. No worries though as I can still find parts, it is still fun, and it still rides through the woods like it was meant to do.
  • + 7
 Fuck yes Giro. Thank you!
  • - 1
 Heck yeah!!! that's what I say too man.... I can't wait!!! I'm definitely getting a set of those big tires, just for giggles and in the winter it'll be awesome for sure!
  • + 1
 I still have to believe MIPS is nothing by marketing hype. I can't believe MIPS does anything for a bicycle helmet. In a crash any helmet with pads, sitting on your hair/scalp is going to move around just fine. The extra half inch or so that MIPS moves does nothing else. MIPS only makes sense if the helmet is so tightly fit and stuck to your head that there is no movement possible. Bike helmets just aren't this way. That's my take.
  • + 1
 Sorry, " I still Ride a 26er with 22mm rims" Haters, Like 29ers, 27.5's, & Now Plus sized they are here to Stay!
They add at Least a 20% increase in both Traction, & Contact Patch, with only 150-250 gr increase in weight, & add in only ~1% Rolling resistance. They Corner & Cover rough terrain faster, Harder, with much more Control, then any Std tire. Un-Like Fat tires, they can fit in Std 650-29 fork in a 2.8 in 27.5+ size, easier to turn, brake & accelerate also. But the Best Feature is that the Fun Factor Goes' thru the Roof, with the Increase in Speed, Control & Confidence!
Try a buddies Frnt Tire to get a taste of the MTB's Newest & Next Level.
Ref. Data: www.bicycleretailer.com/sites/default/files/downloads/article/2016%20Tech%20and%20Facts%20Report%20PLUS%20bikes%20USA.pdf
  • + 3
 Plus size tires, for the plus size America
Everyone is getting fat, so should you???
  • + 2
 Schwalbe over priced cracketty knobs can suck it! The new Stubby chain guide/bash looks interesting, but the old one is bomb proof too.
  • + 0
 I dont understand why these large tires always have side knobs on the side of the casing. They could remove at least one row of knobs on both of those tires. Its not like somebody is going to lean a 3" tire over 45 degrees in a corner.
  • + 2
 MRP, that guide looks great. Where are we with dry lube compatibility? Thanks!
  • + 8
 You get dry lubed by the nearly $200 price tag.
  • + 2
 Our latest guides all use nylon, no longer polycarbonate, parts - so you don't really need to worry about lube contamination.
  • + 1
 Hey @NoahColorado do you know when these new 1x guys will be available? In time for CO racing season? Smile
  • + 1
 @tschafer they're out now!
  • + 1
 The [ image | title | text ] format of this article is confusing. The image looks as though it belongs to the section above it because of the emphasised title below.
  • + 1
 There's only so many ways to design something that mounts to 3 fixed points on a frame and then save weight. I think the new guide looks awesome.
  • + 2
 It's easy for a company to say that they never seen something they copied before SMH.
  • + 3
 I can't believe MRP ripped off @numeros for his backplate design!!!!!
  • + 3
 @numeros came up with the easily removable backplate design for his chainguides. And by the looks of it, they have copied his idea. Have a look through his albums and you'll see
  • + 5
 Well, this is how my chainguide looks, and compare them with theirs.

www.pinkbike.com/photo/12132534
www.pinkbike.com/photo/12132535


Good guy MRP.
  • + 1
 Ahh. Thanks guys. That sucks Frown well numeros, yours ARE sexier Smile
  • - 1
 Your guide looks good, but I assure you I'd never seen it before we redesigned the latest AMg.
  • + 5
 Shovel chainguides design is so good, that even industry has started to rip us off Smile . This is just a confirmation of my hard work and invoative ideas which define the future guidelines of the industry.
Similarity is astonishing. Wonder how many guides will appear similar to Shovel design.

Marko, owner and main designer of Shovel
  • + 2
 I knew I saw that guide before.

www.pinkbike.com/photo/12044062
  • + 0
 Yeah, for the first EWS we had a few racers using the new co-molded upper guide on the original AMg backplate. The new uppers will retrofit on those, G3, Micro, and 1x (V2) guides.
  • + 1
 Liking the new chain guide. If mine wasn't still serviceable and I wasn't a "cheapskate" I might be tempted to pick one up.
  • + 1
 27.5+ - because the industry thrives on the "identity crisis in the mtb world". Coming up next...ultra-skinny 36" tires.
  • + 1
 Giro has it right.
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