Continental Der Baron 2.4 Projekt Tire - Review

Nov 24, 2016 at 16:56
by Mike Levy  
Continental Der Baron 2.4 Projekt Tire


Continental describes their burly Der Baron 2.4 Projekt tire as being the ''enduro baron,'' which gives you an idea of what the Germans were going for when they designed their latest offering. The Baron comes in a single 2.4'' width, and with 240 thread-per-inch (60 TPI layered four times) under the tread, 180 TPI (60 TPI layered three times) count in the sidewalls, as well as their Apex protection insert at the bead, it's clearly meant for some serious riding on equally serious terrain.
Der Baron 2.4 Projekt Details
• Intended use: all-around / soft conditions
• Size tested: 29'' x 2.4''
• 'BlackChili' compound
• 240 TPI (60 TPI x 4) under tread
• 180 TPI (60 TPI x3) sidewalls
• 'Apex' sidewall inserts
• Weight: 1,035 grams
• MSRP: $85.95 USD
www.continental-tires.com / @ContinentalMTB

All of that adds up to a portly 1,035-gram weight in the 29'' offering, so look elsewhere if you have a problem with a tire that weighs more than some cross-country bike frames do. It's also not inexpensive, at $85.95 USD but, as you'll read, grip and confidence in nasty conditions clearly don't come cheap.


Continental Der Baron 2.4 Projekt Tire


Zee German's at Continental have thrown a lot of their tire technology at the Baron, including the always impressive BlackChili rubber compound that seems to be somehow as tacky as a Hallmark Christmas movie but without wearing away quick enough that you can actually see your money disappearing on the trail. Despite the name, Continental didn't actually mix chili peppers into the rubber compound, but they did infuse it with ''nanometric carbon soot particles, which are optimized in shape and surface properties for best uses for the intended tyre.'' Wissenschaft!

They're claiming that the mix makes for 26-percent less rolling resistance, a 30-percent higher friction value (grip), and a 5-percent increase in mileage, although I doubt those numbers come from comparing apples to apples. Regardless, I've found the BlackChili compound impressive in the past.

The Baron features a very open tread pattern designed to excel in soft conditions, or when things are wet and messy. When the tire was first introduced at Sea Otter, we were told that it was intended to mimic how a cut spike option performs without having to actually break out the snips. The aggressive yet open tread pattern should be able to penetrate into the ground and clear mud well, but not squirm on hard surfaces or roll like a tractor tire, two traits that a true mud tire is usually guilty of. Continental designed the Baron with this in mind, and also made sure to ramp the leading edges of the crown knobs in a search rolling speed.
Der Baron 2.4 Projekt Tires

As you'd expect with any tire that weighs over 1,000-grams, the Baron's casing is fairly robust. There's a 240 thread-per-inch (60 TPI layered four times) layer under the tread, and a slightly more supple 180 TPI (60 TPI layered three times) count in the sidewalls, both of which should provide a massive amount of protection against pointy rocks and possibly even gunfire. Continental also employs their Apex inserts just above the Baron's beads for some added flat protection for when you're running super low pressures, and all of the above is also tubeless-ready when combined with some sealant of your choice.




Performance

The idea of there being a 'best tire' is about as true as the Easter bunny; there's just too many different types of terrain, conditions, and riding styles, let alone when you get into what one person values over another when it comes to wear rate, rolling speed, weight, and other things you may or may not care about. One man's tire choice is another's worst nightmare, but I suspect that anyone who uses a set of Der Baron 2.4 Projekt tires in mucky conditions will find themselves to be upright and in more control than they expected. In short, this tire is unreal in wet, or even just soft, settings.


Continental Der Baron 2.4 Projekt Tire
Continental Der Baron 2.4 Projekt Tire


They throw sticky mud off of themselves like a wet dog shaking off water, as you'd expect given their very open lug layout, and they're just as surefooted in slick conditions as Schwalbe's Magic Mary that everyone and their cousin seems to love. But where the big Continental has an advantage over the Mary is when it's not just mud and soft dirt that you have to contend with, but also when the trail is covered in wet roots. I've been somewhat let down by the Mary's performance on slick roots, obstacles that it seems to prefer to skitter over if you don't exercise extreme caution. The Baron, on the other hand, offers more grip and control through sections that have more wood than dirt.

This won't be an issue if your trails don't have loads of roots on them, but those who are lucky enough to be constantly tested by Mother Nature's tentacles will likely be big fans of the Baron. What you might not be a fan of, however, is their rolling speed, which feels to be, despite what I've read elsewhere, about on par with what you'd expect from such an aggressive design. They're heavy, which also doesn't help matters, and the open tread pattern means that they like to make you work for your momentum. That said, this is really only noticeable when on hard packed ground or when it's dry out.

Despite their slow rolling feel on dry or hard ground, they're also very impressive when it hasn't been raining for days on end. I ran them between 17 and 23 PSI, tubeless, of course, and felt zero weird knob squirm or odd casing flex, and they're surprisingly great all-around'ers when you consider how mind-blowingly awesome they perform in the mud.

Most riders don't even change their tire pressure for the given conditions, let alone swap tires out, which makes it difficult to ever recommend a true mud tire to the average person, but the Baron acts like a proper mud option when needed but without getting sketchy and weird when it's dry.
Continental Der Baron 2.4 Projekt Tire

I can't recall a single moment when the Barons let me down in the cornering department, with a consistent edge feel to them that doesn't have that on/off sensation that can lead to some scary moments. Predictable and stable - what more could you ask for? Certainly not increased braking traction, as the Barons do drop anchor well. I also suffered exactly zero flats while using them, and they're showing little signs of wear.


Pinkbike’s Take:
bigquotesAs great as they are, their 1,035-gram weight and slow-ish rolling speed will make them a definite no-go for some riders, especially those who don't need such a burly or mud-capable tire. But, for a guy like me who lives in the Pacific Northwest and has to deal with mucky trails on probably half of my rides, the 29'' x 2.4'' Baron is hard to beat. - Mike Levy



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173 Comments

  • 31 0
 I too have been impressed with Black Chilli compound. For a few seasons my 2.4 Trail Kings ruled rain or shine. Unfortunately, I did have several sets where the Protection casing warped after a bad landing or even a hard corner. The tire would be mounted straight, there was no visual damage, but the tire would wobble violently and rub on the frame or fork. Conti replaced a couple of tires under warranty, but after warping a fourth tire this past season, I had to move on. Hopefully these new Barons don't suffer from the same issues with the casings.
  • 6 0
 Same here, two Trail Kings warped. Tyres also had a complete loss of air (tubeless) when I park the bike in strong sunlight. It's frustrating. Please Conti, tell us how you remedy this issues and I would be very happy to support your "handmade in Germany". Black Chilli compound really is awesome!
  • 7 0
 @Will77: i had 3 trail kings in a row tear open between the sidewall and the bead, tore a long section of bead clean off. Why bother with 3? Each was a free replacement for the last, the shop didnt even argue, they just gave me a new one each time. Gave up and went back to minions. Conti were a nightmare to set up tubeless too.
  • 13 1
 "There's a 240 thread-per-inch (60 TPI layered four times) layer under the tread, and a slightly more supple 180 TPI (60 TPI layered three times) count in the sidewalls"

its funny when tire companies claim TPI count for layering lower TPI count multiple times - it doesn't work like that in terms of tire performance from carcass construction


some high end open tubular road tires have genuine 320TPI carcass, and the performance difference to vulcanised lower TPI count tires like Conti GP4000II is very noticeable
  • 19 43
flag WAKIdesigns (Nov 24, 2016 at 23:20) (Below Threshold)
 @wda1wustl - Black chilli isn't really impressive if you think of pace star/trail star mix from Schwalbe and Maxx Grip/Maxx Terra from Maxxis. Black Chilli is even worse than Spec compounds. Maybe works fine in dry but not on wet rock slavs or when climbing on roots. A minion SS in cheapest dual compound grips better on climbs that mountain king Ii in black chilli.
  • 13 1
 @WAKIdesigns: there are different blackchilis! TK and Baron 2.4 is softer than MKII and the more XC oriented ones. I had a DC HRII in front and changed to TK2.4Apex, a huge improvement on wet roots!
  • 14 0
 Michelin Magic X compound beats Black Chilli IMHO. For sidewalls there is no comparison, the Michelin Reinforced sidewalls have been indestructible and probably the most supportive and best feeling sidewall EVER. This is just my opinion of course. YMMV.
  • 6 0
 Even different tire widths have different compounds e.g. Mountain King 2.2 vs 2.4 ... or Trail King 2.2 vs TK 2.4. Mountain king 2.4 ProTection has much more climbing grip e.g. than a minion in dual IMHO.

But, this does not matter because those stories about wrapped casings or teared on sidewall near the bed are very common. I have destroyed 3 conti's last season and I simply quit them (2 years ago I had cut through apex sidewall). Apex or not, ProTection or not, casing is not robust, period.
  • 2 1
 I fitted them to the front and back of my hard tail, sadly I can't really report on how they wear or handle because the rear side wall ripped within 100m and the front went within 250m of starting the ride. I was running them tubeless so stuffed in a tube and sidewall patch on the rear but quit when front went. I only glanced against rocks, this has happened too many times with Contis, lesson learnt I run Specialized tyres now.
  • 12 13
 i messed up tread on 2 Purgatory and ripped 2 knobbs off Slaughter GRID. Schwalbes are a laugh when it comes to durability. Never ever had issues durability with Maxxis Exo but i know a few who did. Another thing about Conti protection MKII that I didn't like was how nearly impossible it was to seal them on most rims. Their hard and stiff, plastic like bead just wouldn't seal. Grip wise, minion dhf in maxxgrip on front is fkng unbelievable
  • 2 0
 @WAKIdesigns: I use a Butcher control on the front and a Slaughter control on the rear. I am lucky enough to ride a bike for a living and I/we have been given just about every tyre going to test over the years. The only tyres I have ti pay for are Specialized and those are the ones I use. The guys who work for me use Maxxis and they like them, there is more drag and less durability with them for us though.
  • 5 0
 2 Trail Kings, two Mountain King MkII's and a X-King have all warped on me. Twice they've put me on the ground, one Trail King warped on the front after a small 10" drop (broken ribs) and the Mountain King MkII went wobbly on the first ride climbing up a short slope over roots! All top-of-the-range ones in Black Chili, great tyres but completely unreliable so it's Maxxis for me now.
  • 3 0
 Same here, I had a Rubber Queen which warped so hard that I thought i munched my front wheel, it was rubbing so hard. I threw on a new DHF and I was away laughing again.
  • 10 17
flag WAKIdesigns (Nov 25, 2016 at 2:22) (Below Threshold)
 @TheMountainBikeAdventure: considering desparities between our geographical locations I can only assume that the only way what you describe is possible, is that your terrain doesn't allow you to utilize the MASSIVE grip surplus of Maxxis DHF MaxxGrip/ Maxx Terra over Spec. I say that because I just came off the Butcher Co and Slaughter Grid combo and changed to DHF maxxgrip and Minion SS dual compound. The difference is so ridiculous that even minion ss in cheapest hardest compound grips better on climbs than Slaughter (given same pressures). And in Maxx Terra it would absolutely outclass it. Cornering wise they are comparable. Stability wise Slaughter is offcourse better.

If you run a guding business then off course go for spec because they wear out slower so you save cash. Also percentually your clients will rather be Joeys than shredders so they won't give a fk if it is butcher or ground control. But the braking and cornering grip of minion dhf MGrip over butcher Control is just gigantic. At least in central and northern Europe. Perhaps not in sandy Spanish trails.

If you were from Madeira though, I bet you'd be running my minion
  • 3 1
 @WAKIdesigns: We are in Southern Portugal, the tracks I have built are rocky, very fast hard pack, rocks, some rocky sections and some really rocky sections! Most of our customers bring their own bikes so make their own tyre choices and I doubt they are as bothered as we are about how fast the tyres wear out. We do run them way past the point that most people would say they are shot but all bike guides do that. Like I said I have ridden pretty much every tyre out there and I still choose the Specialized over the others for a lot of reasons.
  • 7 8
 Stop saying that your other Contis defirmed or failed. This one and the new der Kaiser projekt are different beasts. Reinforced, heavier and tougher.i have not deformed them yet after bad landings as exos or previous lighter contis....
  • 7 2
 Yes. I love Trail Kings, but I have lost 3 to casing warps in the last year. I have tried other tries, but not found one I love for year round riding in Coastal BC as much. I keep buying them and hoping they don't die young.

Continental come on let's fix this casing issue.Frown
  • 4 0
 @vikb: can't understand why you got down prop'ed - that is a such an issue w/ conti's I gave up on the brand years ago. spending $70 on a tire when the casing deforms as easily as the conti's do is crazy. unless conti is will to reimburse the $ spent on tires they wouldn't warranty then never again!
  • 17 17
 @Grmasterd: because recently Pinkbike became a house of Fanbois. Pick a wrong brand to like or dislike regardless of the reasons and you get downvoted. Look: I don't like Hope hubs for being noisy
  • 1 0
 @Grmasterd: yes it's sad because I really do love the TKs in every other way as my year round tire. Oh well. Either they'll fix the issue or I'll find something else I like just as much.
  • 1 0
 @Boardlife69: You want to see a Wild Mud completly open by a sharp stone? after 25 meters of chrono Big Grin ... and IMHO the magic-x is a good compound but in the wet and roots the wildmud is a really soap... with or without cut knobs... very dissapoint by these tyre.
  • 4 4
 @WAKIdesigns: haha - I don't like Hope hubs bc their not I9's!
  • 1 0
 @vikb: hey i have a brand-new set of trailkings 2.4 protection for you if you want. Holler
  • 4 0
 @WAKIdesigns: the der Baron BC compound is softer than der Kaiser BC which is softer than Trail King which is softer than Mountain King. Not sure where Mud King falls, but BC compounds are nearly tire-specific. The der Baron grips wet roots better than any tire I've ridden. Though to be fair I haven't ridden Magi-X or WTB High Grip. It is certainly better than MaxxGrip in terms of grip, and absolutely destroys it in terms of durability. Vertstar grips very well too though, but is slower rolling and they don't make a 1000g VS Magic Mary.
  • 3 0
 @Boardlife69: true to my experience, I just wish Michelin made something with a tread design like shorty, der Baron or Magic Mary. I've really enjoyed the Rock'R2 on F w the Grip'R in back in dry, but they don't do well in loose/mud (knobs too close on Rock'R2, Grip'R doesn't have good enough cornering knobs). Need something in between those options and their mud tire, and I'd be sold. Eyeballing the E13 TRSr F TRS+ R, but not sure if the knobs are tall enough to grip like the others.
  • 1 0
 @lkubica: I've had no problems w casing failure, but I have had issues w sealing. Not sure if I got a bad batch, but my first set I rode all summer and knobs hardly show wear but they lost the ability to hold air tubelessly despote sealant - just too many tiny leaks (like a million). Second set I just put on leaks too (at install, after both rides, loses pressure enven while sitting).
  • 1 0
 @Lagr1980: agree. These are different than previous offerings.
  • 2 1
 @DaMilkyBarKid: Agreed. The three Contis I bought all warped within the first two rides. Never again, never again. Maxxis is the only brand that doesn't seem to have issues for me, the 3C casing is strong enough, and they grip when I need them to grip. The Contis are also damn hard to get on to i25 rims and when they do they don't seal at the bead and leak out of the sidewall like cheesecloth. That should tell you right there the TPI count is bs as it's just folded over three times on itself.
  • 7 0
 @chezotron: 3C isn't a casing, it's a compound and there are multiple iterations of it - do you mean EXO or DD?
Did you try a der Baron Projekt or der Kaiser Projekt? If not, you should before you comment. These are different. That's like saying that Double Down isn't enough because EXO is too flimsy.
Agree on the casing leaks which is a major design flaw (gonna try a different sealant), but performance-wise, these are like no other Conti - you can't even compare these to the der Baron/der Kaiser Trail tires, or the Baron or Kaiser DH tires. All very different. They should lovably name their tires less confusingly to help end-users more easily see the differences.
  • 6 0
 @WAKIdesigns: that's not why you've been downvoted...
  • 11 15
flag WAKIdesigns (Nov 25, 2016 at 12:45) (Below Threshold)
 @jimmyconnors: i'm in the pub, drinking good beer and chatting with my buddies and nice girls, people laugh at my jokes, boss tells a cool story about journey to Africa. I don't give a flying f*ck why people downvote me. f*ck them. Life's good tonight. Really really good. f*ck your tyre compound because life's so fkng good. I love you and fk you mate
  • 5 2
 @Will77:

continental.....= German for "does not stay inflated"
  • 1 0
 @WAKIdesigns: sealed mine with an airline,its the only way. Contact sports on the old BMW gripped like f*ck but mechanic at Kwik fit looked at me like I was a cabbage when I enquired if they were black chilli compound Smile
P.s your a pisshead Wink
  • 7 13
flag WAKIdesigns (Nov 25, 2016 at 13:57) (Below Threshold)
 Can someone Pleeeeeas le legalize POT in fkng Sweden. I just rode home theough town doint wheelies stoppies and cutties accompanied by wrd nois s. Blee blaaaa fk alcoholo i want weedd. Ca me down and focus flkkkkk
  • 6 14
flag WAKIdesigns (Nov 25, 2016 at 14:02) (Below Threshold)
 @Earthmotherfu: hey lisen budman, what d fk do peole in uk do if they now that they willvomit ass soon as they puf thwir head on a pillowZ listen listen mateZ. My wofe is in there sleepin I will spreaf sick all over the plais if I lat downZ Heeeeey hseeeeey you fukrs . Fk your tyre compound fk it X i mean get fkndk. Yur fucing fkrst world priblemszz. Fkng black chilli go fk yourself. Get a minion or fuch off
  • 7 14
flag WAKIdesigns (Nov 25, 2016 at 14:10) (Below Threshold)
 @Earthmotherfu: i f what de fuchj i xant reply I have to fkng reply by climbing ck on eartjmotherf*cker to reply . Heeey fk mate. I don't wana voiy. 'My kids sleeo nect door. Fk i got pissed . HepbmeZ help me. Fk sram eagle go fk that wude range. Pussjies schwalbe tyres continental. I tell yacwhay is continental. Breakdast at good hotell, continental breakfast at Iviza where grmn tourists get fkd in the arse . Listening to hous music . Ibiza
  • 5 0
 @WAKIdesigns you got the action man stuck up your arse again?
  • 6 4
 @Earthmotherfu: and gi joe got stuck and gi joe got stuck
  • 1 0
 @erikkellison: My bad, I mean the EXO casing. I've never felt the need to go to DD as we don't have a ton of sharp rocks abound in the Northwet.
I refuse to try any more Conti tires. They've lost my trust like they've lost many others in this comment section. I've found Maxxis to be reliable and overall the better tire compared to any brand. If WTBs lasted longer I'd use them. But too much leakage, tyres that go wobble in the night and high prices and I see no reason to even bother anymore. Nothing like $40 a ride! I get that you're a fan of them and they really work for you. Good on you! Keep rollin.
  • 6 0
 @WAKIdesigns: if your blowing your beans too early,try lions piss. Rub it on your derek.
  • 5 0
 @hampsteadbandit: THANK YOU! 60 TPI layered 4 times doesn't make it a 240 TPI tire. It doesn't have the same suppleness as a legit 240 TPI tire and shouldn't be labeled as such.

It's like companies saying they have 800 thread count bed sheets. Just doesn't count
  • 1 0
 @TheMountainBikeAdventure: I too have made that switch.
  • 13 0
 @WAKIdesigns: Pinkbike is the ex girlfriend Waki sends incoherent texts to when he comes home drunk.
  • 3 0
 @erikkellison: Better than WTB High Grip for grip and rolling. WTB's were good just not as good.

Everyone else who has TK stories, these are not TKs. I am certain that there has been a bad batch (or two) in the last year as almost eeryone has warped or torn the bead on a TK. One set of Der Baron Projekts (very different to the old Baron/ Rubber Queen) for four weeks training and the Trans-Provence. No punctures, no warping and enough rear tread left to ride for another couple of weeks when I got home (just). Best tyre ever (although I have not tried the new Michelins).
  • 3 0
 @erikkellison: My Der Baron Projekts leaked (like it was the water part of the sealant) with TruckerCo Cream and Stans but they have been near perfect when I switched to Conti's sealant. Interesting?
  • 2 0
 @amrskipro: Not surprised that something else works better than Stan's sealant. I've always had trouble with Stan's sealant and new tires. I switched to Orange Seal and haven't looked back, so when I read about people having trouble getting new tires to seal with Stan's I have a nice lol.
  • 3 0
 @zephxiii: Agreed about Orange Seal. It really does the job.
  • 2 1
 Same. I've run Mountain Kings and Trail Kings a few times. Great rubber but the side walls and casing's all failed in various ways. Maxxis, Schwalbe and Bontrager have all been more reliable in my experience.
  • 1 0
 @amrskipro: Indeed. I have tried BOR which worked for all summer, but was never perfect (required occasional re-airing) and Orange Seal which leaked like a sieve from the initial application. Tried the Conti Revo sealant in the past but didn't like it for other tires, but will now be picking some up for this particular issue just to see how well it works. I don't like the fact that I have to seal the sidewall on a 1000g+ tire - it should already be air-tight - sealant should just be for imperfections in bead/rim interface, and punctures.
  • 2 1
 @chezotron: @zephxiii Orange Seal does NOT fix the leaky sidewalls on these. Used liberally, no dice. I mean, they hold air, but Orange Seal has done the worst job out of the 3 sealants I've tried (BOR, Stan's, now Orange Seal). Going back to Revo. Going to warranty the leaky tires too...
  • 2 0
 @erikkellison: Oh I didn't mean on Contis. I don't buy em anymore. Works on any other tire I've had (Spesh, Maxxis, WTB) no problem. I agree that a 1000g tire should only need bead sealing and nothing more. Otherwise what the hell is the sidewall doing???!?!?
  • 1 1
 @chezotron: Aha! I was wondering...
Also, funny that an Orange Seal fanboi downvoted my experience w their sealant. It's not my fault it didn't seal up the Conti's - probably mostly Conti'S fault, but the fact stands that it was the worst of the 3 on the dBP/dKP.
  • 2 0
 @vikb: exactly the same problem twice, sucks balls because the 2.4 black chilli is other wise a great tyre.
  • 2 0
 @Will77: sounds like you maybe shouldn't park your bike in strong sunlight
  • 18 1
 Its funny on my road bike its conti's all the way but ive never got along with their mtb tires. On my mtb i wouldnt use anything but maxxis but i dont get along with maxxis road tires. I guess you just like what you like and thats it.
  • 11 0
 How about a head to head: this or the e thirteen trs/trsr?
  • 47 1
 Excellent idea. We'll do a 'Ridden and Rated' with 6 - 8 tires at some point soon.
  • 6 0
 @mikelevy: you responded as if this was already in the works...
  • 8 0
 @mikelevy: Pleas have a Michelin tire in that test to, love my wild rocr2 but need something different for autum\winter rides.
  • 3 0
 @mikipedia: Try the Grip'R2, does a good job of shedding mud and grip for days in all conditions. I love my Rock'R2 too for drier trails. They both roll fast considering all that grip they provide. I have a library of tires and the Grip'R is my favorite all rounder.
  • 1 1
 @Boardlife69: Will check them out????
  • 2 0
 Should be a thumbs up, not questionmarks.
  • 10 0
 @mikelevy: please let us vote which tires you will test with a poll

Then buy then buy them in a store so you get the same quality as we do.
  • 1 0
 @Boardlife69: grip'R2 corner knobs kinda suck (though I've only used Gum-X, not softer Magi-X), but nowhere near as reliable/predictable/stable as Rock'R2. They slide too soon on loose over hardpack and don't dig in to soft enough.
  • 1 0
 @erikkellison: @erikkellison: Try Wild'Mud Magi-X, cut the knob, you have now a great all rounder "wet mid-season" front tire
  • 1 0
 @mikelevy: I would love to see a head to head comparison for best long distance trail tire. No denying DHF or RockR2 @ DH traction, but I don't want to pedal those tires for 3+ hr rides! RockR2 magic is like peeling tape on asphalt! 1150g, vs 550g conti x king RS is huge difference in a ride that involves biking to the trail. I propose 2 categories, shuttle / enduro, and xc light trail...?
  • 2 0
 @sjdeweese: honestly on some long rides I push dh tires because you know what sucks more than being tired? A torn tire miles from the trail head
  • 2 0
 @adrennan: Good point, my local quick rides are on very mild, dry single track. 12-16 mi. With some pavement / bike path sections. Have a set of Rock R2 that come out for rougher areas. If say I was going for a big all day adventure, or overnight for sure durability hold presedence over weight. But the xc style tires carry speed over flat sections and the faster I'm going the more fun I'm having
  • 3 0
 The wild rockr 2 advanced reinforced is the only single ply tire that I haven't destroyed on rough rocky DH trails. Its heavy at ~1000g but I know I can count on it, best compromise short of going dual ply. Not the best grip on slow slick stuff but still pretty good. Didn't come cheap but it was well worth it.
  • 1 0
 @PLC07: Right on. Picked up a set of those at $45 each when they we're just released! Really like them, just been overkill for my local rides unfortunately. Maybe pair it with faster rear Michelin and put the gumx on front
  • 9 2
 I had one of these, got one days riding aboot 20 miles out of it. The ply warped so bad the tyre touched the frame. Had to throw it in the bin still with the mold flash on it! Vowed never to buy conti again
  • 6 1
 and possibly even gunfire. HAHAHAAA! i have one on the front of the wagon wheeler and it's awesome. very impressed and 20 bucks less than the DHF. doesn't play nice tubeless with my rim though. went with a tube in the end. don't care, love the tire. looks like it's gonna last forever.
  • 5 0
 BCC, best compound ever. Try also the 2,5 DH Baron for the big bike, ridiculously awesome. Grip is unbelievable, the knobs feel so soft like they would be worn out after 1 ride, but actually they last pretty long for that amount of grip. Also they don't get so much tattered after a while, like Schwalbe tires usually do...
  • 4 0
 Ive been running the barons on my trail bike since theyve been available. I like them pretty well. Curious how wide of a rim they were mounted to to be running 17psi with no squirm, i typically get a bit of squirm out of them around 20psi but my rim isnt all that modern in the width department.
  • 11 0
 They're on the new Stan's Flow rims w/ a 29mm internal width, and I weigh 165lbs. The 17psi number is when things are really wet and rolling slower, and it's mostly for more climbing traction on some pretty steep and rooty climbs I like to frequent. They're usually in the low 20psi range when it's dry, or when I'm riding faster trails.
  • 2 0
 @mikelevy: how would they rank up against the Shorty?
  • 3 0
 NVM, just saw that those lunatics don't even offer them in a 27.5 DH casing version.
  • 1 0
 @bonkywonky: confused... they offer this exact same tire in 27.5"... I would expect the Shorty to hook up almost as well, wear significantly faster and roll slower. There's something magical about the der Baron Projekt.
  • 1 0
 @erikkellison: I'm looking for a proper DH tyre, ie dual ply sidewalls, dear friend.
  • 1 0
 @bonkywonky: in that case, Schwalbe Super Gravity or Maxxis folding bead DH both are light ways to meet your needs, but rubber compounds leave something to be desired as neither company can match this particular iteration of Black Chili. Still no holy grail.
  • 1 0
 What happened to the trail version of the kaisers anyway? They made them and then the next year they were gone from the line up. Loved the dual ply ones, I would have put the trail version on my trail bike.
  • 1 0
 @erikkellison: try Minions with 3C maxxgrip and tell me you need more grip. If so, you are wasting your time my friend, you should be racing Danny HRt
  • 1 0
 @WAKIdesigns: I have a Minion DHF WT Maxxgrip on the front with a DHR2 WT MaxxTerra on the rear... I guess my terrain just manages to demand more from my tires than most other areas... or maybe I'm justy picky and bored. We have some slick rocks, roots, woodwork, mud gets tracked everywhere, loam... The Minions are good, but they pack up in the damp loam and mud, and the rubber slips easier on wet roots than the dBP (even when clear). dBP is just plain better for the wet in the PNW (just came back from another ride which confirmed that, and confirmed my developing opinion that the dKP isn't so good in the same demanding conditions (it's pretty damp right now, and it slides on corners, over roots easier, packs up easier). I find myself wishing they made a Shorty WT Exo in MaxxGrip, and I've wanted the Magic Mary SS in Vertstar for a long time. Might be tempted to try the new Vigilante Light High Grip to check my 3 winter PNW boxes: light, handles mud, grips on slick stuff.
  • 1 0
 @erikkellison: What are your thoughts on the Shorty?

And with regard to your suggestion above, I mean a real DH tyre as I already hit my rims enough with dual ply Minions, even when running a lot of psi. Running a mid-weight tyre would probably mean destroying my rims and pinch flatting all over the place, which isn't my idea of a nice day out on the bike.
  • 1 0
 @erikkellison: From what I've seen from videos we live in a very similar terrain and the only thing that may differ greatly is that you have more mud&loam and I have even more rocks and roots. Then you have dramatically bigger altitude differences so it is more likely that I climb steeper sht (since if I was meant to climb stuff as steep and rough as mine for 2000 vertical feet, I'd beat Nino Schurter with no problem). So more demanding tech climbs for me but higher speeds on downhills for you (I'd change with you anytime)

Now Minions do pack with mud more than Shorties and indeed it is an issue I know and mud pile stuck to tyre changes 1ply tyre into 3" Gazzaloddi from 2003. (I had Highrollers and they are terrible with that) But compared to Shorty typ tyre, Minions are less suspectible to be caught by diagonal roots on downs, and offer MUCH more grip on slick rocks. It is worth mentioning here that brakes play a major role in places as wet as ours. I hope you don't run Formulas. Latest Guides and Shimanos allow me to brake on most of wet slick rock with front brake at angles as big as 30 degrees and also stay controlled over roots if there is no other place to brake on. What brakes are you running?

Cheers
  • 1 0
 @WAKIdesigns: Zee front, SLX rear.

Trouble is I come across all kinds of surface during one ride, lots of slick clay mud where the Shorties would excel but also rooty descents and some rocky bits here and there. I ride DH but also lots of "enduro" (in my case a bunch of DH tracks mixed with steep natural trails and some tarmac/fire roads to link up it all up).
  • 1 0
 @bonkywonky: clay is indeed a pain in the arse. My mud is more of a soil kind of thing so it sheds relatively well off the minion, at the same time it packs up highrollers like fudge. Lots of people here run shorties too. They rail soft underlay like nothing. Sounds like you have your balance right Wink
  • 4 0
 I have been using them since March 2016. I took them for 10 days trip to Alps this summer including racing in MegaValanche. They were dealing with everything without any issues. Highly recommended tyre. Glacier, snow, streams with wet rocks, sharp rocky singletracks, wet rocks, fast singletracks, blown switchbacks, roots, more roots, gulleys filled with rocks, loose over hard, sticky mud, and anything else you can find on MegaValanche they feel at home. I still have enoug thread to carry on through the winter in UK on them. ???? I have a set of these mounted on my GT Sanction, tubeles on WTB frequency rims i25 with continental sealant. Sealed with floor pump in 5 minutes. Remember to prime them with sealant and little brush as continental advised first than no issues with leaking air.
  • 2 0
 onyl time I wouldn't have the baron on the bike is when its dry or hard pack, in everything other condition it excels. compared to the original baron, its better over rocks and roots but not as good in the mud. Bloody expensive though.
  • 2 0
 Neve been crazy paying for tires that are not true to size...but caved in and after looking at every tire option, pulled the trigger on some Maxxis DHF 2.5's . They are definatley not 2.5's, as they clear my 2016 Camber easily, but now i see why they are a tire standard. They are just really good tires at everything. Tough, fast enough, and confidence inspiring. .
  • 2 0
 I'm amazed the Mavic Charge XL only got one mention here. It's an amazing grippy front wet and dry, up there with the Mary, for me better. IMO the 2.5 WT Shorty is king in mud and roots upfront, i like that can be run soft on a big rim for confidence on roots.
I too liked the old 26" Baron and am getting on well with the DerBaron 650 on the rear this Winter. It has tough sidewalls without too much weight and the compound seems good even when the ground is frozen. For greasy (clay) Southern UK trails in Winter I found that same Baron a bit slidey upfront and appreciate the deeper tread on the Shorty.
Compared to a Shorty 2.3 Maxxterra on the rear the Baron doesn't hook up on steep slippy climbs just quite as well, its almost there though. It's going towards DHRII territory there, a great Summer tyre (although Baron is better than DHRII, to be fair the Shorty hooks up on steep climbs like no other IMO, unless casting the mind back to the "boat anchor" Swamp Thing!) maybe its the ramped knobs on Baron and DHRII that limit steep uphill traction in the wet a little.
There's a very level headed comprehensive review (see link) comparing 3 great tyres, Tim's other pieces on the WT Maxxis tyres are interesting too, heres the comparison link - wheelsizeagnostic.com/review-shootout-schwalbe-magic-mary-vs-conti-der-baron-vs-maxxis-shorty . Another good Enduro tyre comparison on the Enduro Mag site aswell. Both are worth a read.
Issues, yeah, I had a Shorty go unusable wobbly last year when the bead reinforcement rope slipped (warrantied, thanks Maxxis HQ) and my DerBaron rear does look a bit wobbly - it doesn't seem to notice when riding though. These tyres are too expensive to chuck before they wear for wobbliness reasons. Are they just trying too hard to make light pliant carcasses and thats why the get compromised? Come to think of it my 26" Baron got warrantied due to a scary crosshatch pattern appearing in the sidewalls as if the reinforcement fabric was coming through the rubber. So at least these guys stand by what they made.
So much great rubber nowadays.
Enjoy the mud guys.
  • 2 1
 I tossed these on a few months ago and I'm really happy with them - lots of grip. Only negative was I had a horrendous time seating the tire bead, more specifically: getting them to seal. Came out to the garage on three occasions to find them flat. I've never had that issue with maxxis. They've been fine since I added about 2x the recommended amount of stans.
  • 2 0
 I have recently gotten both the 2.4 trail kings and the 2.4 der barons. Love both sets of tires, what I did notice is that the trail kings are wider than the der barons. Both mounted to azonic outlaws
  • 1 0
 26" not sure about the 27.5 or the 29, but the 26" 2.4 trail kings are bomber
  • 2 1
 Coming from 3 years of Conti Kaiser Projekt on the DH bike with zero issues (tubeless on Flow EX), I was hesitant to swap for these lighter carcass tyres. Once I did, there was no looking back.

Improved: - allround conditions grip - wet conditions and roots grip

Less well compared to Kaiser Projekt: - dusty conditions (by a small margin) - more sensitive to tyre pressure (0.1 bar below my preferred pressure and the carcass folds over in turns)

Bottom line: I now routinely check my pressures before every ride (you should do that anyway imo). Result: I have greatly improved traction in many situations. Added benefit: my DH bike lost something like 700 grams compared to the Kaisers, which made the bike much more lively. Great gravity tyre.

PS: also ride 'em on the Enduro, funny what consistent tyre feel between different bikes does for you...
  • 2 0
 Best tires I ever had (compared to Schwalbe and Onza)! Was on the 26x2.5 before, now on 27.5x2.4, never had any issues and as mentioned in the review grip on wet roots is paramount!
  • 1 0
 I've had 3 on my dh bike and I punctured two of them few times just where the bead is... Massive let down especially when you just converted to tubeless! So now I've 3 tyres lying around. Got High Rollers 2 DH now and no more problems with pinch flats, much better all around grip. Barons had very vague feeling on some wet hardpack (Antur Stiniog or freeride line in Revolution bike park) but they were ok in mud.
  • 2 1
 The sparse wedged blocks do not aid traction on any tyre that has them. I find the tyres perform better if they are installed opposite to the rotation arrow. Braking is a little comprised but that's find for me. I found Magic Mary's to be a very good front tyre. It would be my preference.
  • 1 0
 Anyone have other recs for a good 2.35-2.4 trail tire. All around - good grip, durable, reasonable weight. I ride mostly rooty, rocky northeast trails. Have Hans Dampf on now and like them other than how they wear - which is too fast.
  • 2 0
 These are best wearing unless you want to lose a lot of grip... but Michelin Rock'R2 Advanced Reinforced Gum-X would be a good choice for F with same compound/construction Grip'R in rear. Good in all but loose loam/mud.
  • 1 0
 Another vote for the Rock'R2 and Grip'R tires. Great burly tire, but like @erikkellison says, they're not great when it's wet.
  • 1 0
 @mikelevy: Or Wild'Mud. Tried Rock'R and Wild'Mud in all season, i'd rather take wild'mud (unless you live in a very dry region). But Michelin's tires are not in the "reasonnale weight" category (i mean advanced reinforced ones...)
  • 1 0
 I've had some Trail Kings on my HT for a few seasons now and I have to say I'm very impressed with the all round performance. Loads of grip in corners but I have experienced this tread shift wobble thing and it sucks. Great performance but I'll probably look at a Schwalbe or Maxxis set up next time.
  • 1 0
 I'm amazed the Mavic Charge XL only got one mention here. It's an amazing grippy front wet and dry, up there with the Mary, for me better. IMO the 2.5 WT Shorty is king in mud and roots upfront, i like that can be run soft on a big rim for confidence on roots.
I too liked the old 26" Baron and am getting on well with the DerBaron 650 on the rear this Winter. It has tough sidewalls without too much weight and the compound seems good even when the ground is frozen. For greasy (clay) Southern UK trails in Winter I found that same Baron a bit slidey upfront and appreciate the deeper tread on the Shorty.
Compared to a Shorty 2.3 Maxxterra on the rear the Baron doesn't hook up on steep slippy climbs just quite as well, its almost there though. It's going towards DHRII territory there, a great Summer tyre (although Baron is better than DHRII, to be fair the Shorty hooks up on steep climbs like no other IMO, unless casting the mind back to the "boat anchor" Swamp Thing!) maybe its the ramped knobs on Baron and DHRII that limit steep uphill traction in the wet a little.
There's a very level headed comprehensive review (see link) comparing 3 great tyres, Tim's other pieces on the WT Maxxis tyres are interesting too, heres the comparison link - wheelsizeagnostic.com/review-shootout-schwalbe-magic-mary-vs-conti-der-baron-vs-maxxis-shorty . Another good Enduro tyre comparison on the Enduro Mag site aswell. Both are worth a read.
Issues, yeah, I had a Shorty go unusable wobbly last year when the bead reinforcement rope slipped (warrantied, thanks Maxxis HQ) and my DerBaron rear does look a bit wobbly - it doesn't seem to notice when riding though. These tyres are too expensive to chuck before they wear for wobbliness reasons. Are they just trying too hard to make light pliant carcasses and thats why the get compromised? Come to think of it my 26" Baron got warrantied due to a scary crosshatch pattern appearing in the sidewalls as if the reinforcement fabric was coming through the rubber. So at least these guys stand by what they made.
So much great rubber nowadays.
Enjoy the mud guys.
  • 1 0
 Just wanted to chime in and offer my experience. First Baron project lasted 500km on the front and was going strong until the bike got stolen. Perfect grip in all conditions. Threw a spare on the new bike with just a few km use and the tyre is warped and wobbles like mad. Can't believe it, visually fine but unusable- tread is as new! Waste of tyre sealant and effort. Sadly I won't use another!
  • 2 0
 I found the der baron great for the rear because of the spaced out side knobs but with the der kaiser up front i finally found a set that compares to a maxxis feel
  • 4 0
 But are they better then running a Maxxis Shorty?
  • 6 2
 Yes.
  • 4 0
 @mikelevy: Wow, that is a very clear statement. I considered the Shorty as the best front tyre ever for wet conditions. Magic Mary also fine but selfcleaning isn't that good.
  • 3 0
 @mikelevy:
Bold statement!

I have been nothing but blown away with how well the shorty has taken on the PNW wet season. From North shore shit show to Bellingham greasy trails its never blown out a corner on me....

I guess maybe this will be a tire I have to try... especially if I can get to ride and potentially hate it and then message you with a 300 word hate essay to your inbox... cause thats how Pinkbike works correct?
  • 1 1
 @2bigwheels: Levy is one person with one opinion. Most prefer Maxxis over Contis all day.
  • 2 0
 No.
  • 2 0
 @Beez177: I've been a big Schwalbe fan for years now - the Hans Dampf and latest Nobby Nic are great all-around'ers, and I'd take them over any Maxxis tire for trail / all-mountain riding. A lot of people got sick of knobs coming off, but that's been sorted out from what I can see. Maxxis used to basically own the high-end market in North America, or at least it appeared so, but now Schwalbe and Specialized (great pricing in Canada) have taken big chunks of that away.
  • 3 1
 @mikelevy: no disrespect intended, but I bet I ride at least as many different brands as you. I always come back to Maxxis as the best overall feeling tires though. I've been super impressed with the new Michelin Wild Rock'r2 for dry conditions.
  • 1 0
 @mikelevy: Mavic Charge XL?
  • 2 0
 maxxis don't have a comparable tyre to the baron 2.4 and the shorty isn't as good over rocks and roots.
  • 1 0
 @poah:

You know I hear this from a lot of people... yet the North Shore is Roots and rocks... has not been a problem, maybe my riding is just so hack and slash I don't notice haha.
  • 6 3
 I will never spend more money on a bike tire then I would on a car tyre. #makebikepartpricesgreatagain
  • 7 1
 I'd love to find top brand high end performance tyres in a meaningful size for my car that are less than $85 each.
  • 2 0
 @gibbon-on-an-orange: i know what your saying but i can get two tyres for my motocross bike for £100 fitted. mtb tyre prices are fkin stupid at the minute
  • 1 0
 Not sure in the US but in canada the specialized butchers single ply for trail are like 55$ and they're pretty good. Not the best tires ever but they're up there, good wear/grip/weight compromise too. Definitely the best bang for your bucks tire you can get. Most other brands are priced around 100-130$ CAD, not worth the extra 55-75$ for the marginal performance increase if you ask me.
  • 3 0
 Bikes are getting a bit out of hand. When a top-spec all mountain bike is more expensive than a race-spec KTM moto-x bike (that's made in Austria - not China or Taiwan) - something is very wrong.
  • 1 0
 I use it as my front tire (650b 2.4) mud, dry, rooty, everything, and I love it. Need rolling speed? Just use a x-king 2.1 on the back. Yeah, as any other Conti they're a bitch to set tubeless.
  • 3 0
 Been using the Baron's since June on the front and bought one for the back and it's a great combo!
  • 2 2
 Tire sucks...first one I tried hadoing pin hole leaks all along the outer casing... wouldn't seal... and wouldn't hold air. Heavy heavy. I'm in the desert and the tire didn't play better than anything else and mostly worse. Continental used to be King...not anymore. Last week a friends front Trail King warped to bad he came off a 4 foot jump and the tire was do crooked on the rim it was rubbing the fork. As one can imagine we assumed the wheel had come out of true...WRONG. We had to deflated the 'crooked' tire, man handle it to sit straight on the rim and re-inflate. Garbage.
  • 1 0
 Your experience is my one beef with the dBP. Wish they held tubeless better. Basically gave the set I ran nearly all summer to a buddy because they didn't hold air despite sealant (he runs tubes), but the knobs are nearly pristine and he loves them.
  • 2 0
 Love mine for Scotland. Do take a while to seal though. Wearing extremely well too..
  • 1 0
 Good - so it's not just me! Mine took forever to seal ... 3-4 rides and lots of stans. CO2 canisters strewn on the garage floor looked like shell casings (normally, I can use my floor pump to seat a Maxxis). I almost gave up on them, but glad I didn't. I'm sure it's probably my narrower rims combined with the beefy sidewall of this tire.
  • 2 1
 Black Chilli is great on wet roots and rocks on their extreme tires but I'm wondering why they give the same name to different compounds...
  • 2 0
 I think that it refers to a general type of compound, and then there are variations of that. So the BlackChili in one tire might not be the exact same as on a different model that has different intentions, but both are different than their standard rubber.
  • 3 0
 @mikelevy: I think it's a case of oversimplified marketing falling down when selling to consumers like MTBers who are used to thinking about durometer values etc. If you read between the lines of Continental's blurb, black chili is an additive. The compounds vary hugely - there are at least four obviously different compounds within the MTB range, from wet DH through to dry XC race.

Also the compounds continue to be changed over time. I haven't tried the new Baron Projekt but the old one had the most amazingly sticky yet durable rubber. The old Rubber Queens (UST 26) weren't quite as sticky but rolled faster and wore at least as well - whilst the newer Trail Kings (Protection 27.5) roll even quicker but are prone to tearing/breaking up so wear faster.

I wish they made better carcasses because I think the best of Conti's black chili tyres have the best rubber on the market but I've found recent Maxxis tyres so much more painless with tubeless, tougher and better feeling on the trail
  • 1 0
 @mikelevy: I've had mixed results. They are amazing like you said in the grip department, but find them a bit of a loose fit. When I was running a narrower rim (SRAM Rail 50), the rear tire blew off twice. And now on NOBL, they don't hold air much longer than a few hours. I want to ride them I'm just scared they will blow off my nice carbon hoops.
  • 2 0
 @ukr77: The fit was good for me on the new Stan's Flow rims, but I do know that almost every tire fit loose on those older Rail 50s - it's the rims, not the tires. People have had to use an extra wrap of Gorilla Tape to make tires fit snug.
  • 2 0
 baron front rear ist my offseason enduro training...no shit, they really roll that bad Smile
  • 1 0
 Conti has never disappointed me ( other than the shirt off my back price ) but, I would tend to use their tires as a "front tire only " choice due to the longer wear.
  • 1 0
 I got 2 der kaisers 2.5 dual ply for DH purpose. The front one lasted for a long time but the back was completely worn after 2 rides and I'm not much of a rear wheel dragger. Best front tire I ever had but really disappointed with the rear one.
  • 1 0
 @Mike levy - can they be run as a DH/super enduro tire in 27.5? They have all those plys. Would make them quite light relatively.
  • 1 0
 It looks as it is going to be a good promising tyre. It doesn't seem to be very draggy as it shows low and short pieces of rubber, instead of big chunky bits...
  • 1 0
 I too had an issue with the TKs ripping at the bead. I once had Conti do me right and send me replacements, the other times I was ignored.
  • 1 0
 @mikelevy
Any 29er recommendations for a burly descending tyre.
Looking to beef up the specialized Enduro for an adventure in the French alps next summer.
  • 1 0
 Great tread, but bead blows. these tires do not hold air overnight. not impressed for a $80 tire. Save your self some headache and cash and go with a WTB!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  • 2 0
 Wish Bonty would make a 2.5 SE5
  • 2 0
 I'd be all over a 2.5 SE5 like a rash.
  • 2 4
 Terrible tires , I had a set of trial kings , done a three inch drop of a curb . To hear a gun shot going off behind me . Looked down at my back wheel to see it wobbling all over . Completely distorted the side wall . Thought I'd buckled my wheel . Not good
  • 9 1
 So what you're saying is that the der Baron Projekt is a terrible tire based on your experience w Trail Kings? They are not comparable tire designs in the slightest. Get sone dBP'S and then comment. Every company makes mistakes, not every company makes tires as good as these.
  • 2 0
 Competitive Cyclist has 3C Shortys on sale right now for $50!
  • 2 0
 Wait; the Easter Bunny isn't real!!?!?!!
  • 1 3
 Seriously...who cares about all this tire talk?
#mindblown
  • 1 0
 $116.28 CDN ........Sometimes I see bicycles as an investment like a house.
  • 3 0
 $82 at MEC, which makes them cheaper than any Maxxis tire I've ever bought.
  • 2 0
 tire looks very good on wet
  • 2 0
 IRC Kujo's for lyf
  • 1 1
 I'm not convinced. I tried a continental mountain King 2 and was not impressed. I'll stick with maxxis and Vittoria.
  • 4 1
 These are not comparable tires. You're missing out.
  • 1 0
 @erikkellison: Man it was the compound that killed it for me. The compound they use is way to hard to me.
  • 1 0
 @dbarnes6891: the dBP compound is different Smile it is arguably the best tire on wet roots I've ridden, maybe only beaten by a 2.8" DH32 at like 12 psi.
  • 1 0
 @erikkellison: Probably just not the tire for me then. The area that I live in has a lot of hardpack and sand conditions. Rarely gets wet. Fast and flowy. If you don't have something with a soft compound and an agressive side knob your going to have a rough time in the corners.
  • 2 1
 The only downside is that they easily blow off the rim
  • 1 0
 What is this rain you speak of?
  • 1 0
 Knob Squirm...
  • 1 0
 sploush!
  • 2 2
 Continental TIres are pretty much garbage.
  • 1 3
 this tire needs metric sizing before it is rideable
  • 3 0
 60-622 Wink
  • 2 2
 @S3tigoHide: Actually 622 is not metric. I mean it is in reality, but it is not to bicycle manufacturers. To make it metric next year they will release the new 620 wheel size. "Imagine first defining the perfect wheel for perfect performance and then adjusting the frame to it, instead of the other way round."
  • 2 0
 @Mattin:
Suggesting another wheel size just when everyone has almost stopped losing their shit sounds like heresy to me
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