CHEWIN’ ON THE GUMMY
Dear Mr. Know-It-All,
I’m a woods rider, and like every guy with my passion, I want to be like Graham Jarvis when the terrain gets rocky and ugly. My question is this: will a gummy or sticky rear tire make a difference? It seems that I get stuck. The tire spins when I wick it up, and I end up pushing over the top or finding another way around. Finally, are they worth the price? I’m pretty budget-minded and like my tires to last. They’re expensive!
via [email protected]
Bobby, the only way to conquer terrain like Graham Jarvis is to spend years honing your skill set riding trials. The key to navigating obstacles is balance, making traction and more balance. Yet, here’s the caveat: gummy tires are full-blown cheaters in hilly, rocky, and rooty terrain. They chew on anything their very flexible knobs can grab, and, if you listen to Graham, he will tell you that they are the biggest improvement to a hard enduro rider’s machine and really elevate the sport. Nearly all the big tire companies offer a sticky or gummy tire. One other proviso: every single hard enduro rider runs foam inserts, and, depending on how brutal the terrain is, they choose very soft inserts for the rear that allow the sidewall to flex and further help traction. This requires running a minimum of two rim locks—and sometimes three.