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Ridefour15
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Tire grip on dry/sandy turns
01/13/18 at 1:23pm
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I'm currently running Specialized Ground Control front, Renegade rear.  Both tires are 2.3" and run at 22PSI tubeless; I'm 180lbs and riding a Stumpjumper hardtail.

The majority of what little trail riding I do is in dry conditions, so the clay is hard and the surface ends up a little sandy at times.  I have almost zero confidence going into turns at speed and it always feels like my tires are about to wash out when there aren't berms.  On some of the bumpy "downhills" like at WWC I have to keep riding the brakes because maintaining speed means I bounce/drift/slide off the trail and into the trees once the trail curves.

Would more aggressive tires help with this, or does that not matter much when it's dry?  I don't want to go any lower on pressure (20PSI is the absolute minimum I've gone and it feels too bouncy).
  
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aasnowrider
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Re: Tire grip on dry/sandy turns
Reply #1 - 01/13/18 at 1:59pm
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I was having same issues on my hardtail.  Went with 2.3 purgatory on front and have noticed a huge difference.  I moved the ground control that was on the front to the rear.  Not sure on tire pressure but it feels so much tighter on cornering.  I have about 6 rides on it.
  
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ChosenOne
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Re: Tire grip on dry/sandy turns
Reply #2 - 01/13/18 at 2:04pm
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It's not the tires... it's all in your head.  Stay on top of the bike through the turns.  Lean the bike not your body.  This will keep your center of gravity over the bike which will increase traction.  Stay off the breaks unless absolutely necessary because you end up transferring traction from the tires to the break rotors. The bike is like water it will follow the path of least resistance.  If you are breaking while cornering the bike will want to continue on the straight path rather than roll the corner.

Pick up a copy of Mastering Mountain Bike Skills by Brian Lopes.  It is an excellent book and will help make you a better rider.

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Cherokee
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Re: Tire grip on dry/sandy turns
Reply #3 - 01/13/18 at 2:58pm
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What he said ^^^^

I would add one thing. When I went from a Captain (no longer available) to a Ground Control I had a similar feeling...that it had little cornering traction. I re-concentrated on better technique and found (it seems to me at least) that the Captain's corner knobs engaged earlier in the lean than the GC. But the GC always grabbed once I trusted it. The Captain has a more squared profile and the GC more rounded, compared to one another, which I think accounts for the difference. You may be comfortable with a tire with a more square profile. But until your tire actually slides out on you, it may just be that you're giving up on it too soon in the lean.

But no tire is going to give you ironclad traction in grainy sand over hardpack.
« Last Edit: 01/13/18 at 3:01pm by Cherokee »  
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Ridefour15
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Re: Tire grip on dry/sandy turns
Reply #4 - 01/13/18 at 4:00pm
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I used to loooooove The Captain tires, but they didn't make them past 2.1 so I stopped using them years ago.  I have one in my garage as an emergency backup but I believe it has a hole in the sidewall.

I'm considering moving the Ground Control to the rear and getting a new tire for the front (maybe a 2.4, since I love wide tires).  The Renegade slides around when the trails are even slightly wet (common at RRT if I don't take wet bypasses), and it's the rear tire I fear sliding out in dry conditions.  The Ground Control generally goes where I point it.
  
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Re: Tire grip on dry/sandy turns
Reply #5 - 01/15/18 at 7:10pm
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I ride quite a bit chunkier tires than you (butcher up front, sworks ground control back), but have also found that most of my issues were rider error.

I agree the posters about the "on top" bike technique. 
- Use outside leg down, with full body weight on that leg
- Lean the bike vs "turn" the handlebars
- The one thing I found helps the most is actively thinking about how I am weighting the handlebars, vs turning the handlebars, how do I push my top hand down into the dirt, and pull my bottom hand down into the dirt...envisioning myself pushing the edge knobs laterally into the ground as hard as possible

Good luck!
  
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Re: Tire grip on dry/sandy turns
Reply #6 - 01/17/18 at 7:51pm
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"Cole Trickle: Whoa. Her ass is all over the place.

Harry Hogge: When the rear end's loose, the car's fast. Loose is fast, and on the edge of out of control."

I just try to push all my weight down through the saddle/ crank and pray. If  I wash out then I just abandon ship (flats) and do better next time.

Its better to slide out then have it stand up and go over the top though. Just my opinion

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Re: Tire grip on dry/sandy turns
Reply #7 - 02/26/18 at 1:02am
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If you have room for 2.6 wide tires, they will make a world of difference.

I run a 2.6 Nobby Nic on my 29er SS in the front and 2.6 (Magic Mary/Rock Razor) on my trail bike.
  
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Re: Tire grip on dry/sandy turns
Reply #8 - 03/13/18 at 2:35pm
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I've been wondering the same myself with 27.5"

I've got Maxxis DHF and DHR on there now. Good for climbing the rocks but for Springs, Beatty, and Sherman where i ride most I feel I want something for hardpack and faster rolling 

been looking at 2.25 R and 2.35 F or just going with  2.35 both F&R
  
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