The Rubber Met the Road….. and WHIPPED it!
Some cyclists have trouble finding that “just right” pair of bib shorts, or the helmet that sits on their head without pinching. For me, it was finding a set of tires for my road bike. I can’t even remember all of the tires that I have demolished over the past three or four years. Many times I would destroy a set of tires before the center molding ridge was worn off. Around here, we have a lot of road debris. Much of it is medium size sharp edged gravel, but there is also wood chunks, metal debris, and glass. I guess I tend to hit a lot of it. I have ruined so many tires by running over this stuff and then blowing out the sidewall of the tire. Game over. Buy one or two new tires and continue. Enough is enough, and so I decided not to care one little bit about any aspect of a tire except how cheap it was. What difference did it make? The tire was going to last maybe a month or two and then it would be treashed, so just get it done as cheaply as possible. Then a good friend recommended the Maxxis Re-Fuse. He was such a believer that I spent the ninety or so dollars and got a pair. To sum it up, that was money well spent.
There are so many aspects and qualities of bike tires to consider, a short thesis on the various properties of a tire can be written, but the main point for these tires is plain and simple. Toughness. Now I’m not saying that ride quality, cornering, and grip are just thrown out the window. In fact, I only have one thing to mention that is a drawback with these tires – weight. Maxxis says the 25C version of this tire weighs 310 grams. Every one of those grams is used to fortify durability, in my opinion. On the first ride when ascending those gradual to medium grades, I remember thinking that I had to work harder with the extra weight on the tire. True or not, the difference is not that much, and it doesn’t cross my mind these days.
Ok, so we have established that these tires are tougher than Stephen Segal, or do I dare say Chuck Norris, but here is how the rest breaks down. The tires mounted on the wheels easily. The extra volume of the 25C size tire really soaks up the transitions onto bridges, potholes, and chip seal buzz. I decided on the 25C width because of my size, and an article that I read which talked about less sidewall flex of the 25C equating to lower rolling resistance. I guess the pros agree because they are using the 25C more and more. For me, cornering is good, I have skidded the rear tire under heavy braking, but no more than other tires used, and overall traction is fine.
These tires have been ridden about four months and roughly 2000 miles. There have been zero flats. Yes, ZERO flats! I have added air as with any tire, but that is it. I put ‘em on the wheels and have been riding the crap out of them. That’s it. Take a look at this picture of my rear tire. That is a fair size gash and the tire doesn’t even bulge. Enough said.
If you want the ultimate lightweight, maximum grip, latest and greatest tire on the planet, then you may want to keep shopping. If you want a good all-around tire that you can put on your bike and ride it then get yourself a set and enjoy.
I think they need to re-name this tire as the “Honey Badger”. Potholes… Honey Badger don’t care! Glass, sticks, rocks… Honey Badger don’t care! Honey Badger rolls where he wants! Get these tires for your commuter, all-season trainer tire, or in my case an everyday use set of tires. You probably won’t want them for criteriums or hilly time trials, but for other than racing, they fit the bill nicely. There will be another set on my bike when I wear the current ones out. maxxis.com