What's wrong with the Schwalbe Marathon Plus MTB?

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Bikefayre
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What's wrong with the Schwalbe Marathon Plus MTB?

Postby Bikefayre » 29 Dec 2014, 2:55pm

Please explain-What's the difference between a knobbly tyre that isn't a 'proper' mountain bike tyre such as the Schwalbe mentioned and a knobbly that's a 'proper' mountain bike tyre??? For myself thought the Schwalbe Ice Spiker is a 'proper' mountain bike tyre, is this right? Are not stupid would say tyres from Argos and Halfords would hardly be any use off road, yet a tyre from Schwalbe it should work? Was out using a city/trekking half knobbly from Bronx biking on sheet ice, black ice and frost at the front, [cyclocross rear], a mtb tyre, it was fine so if that works on the road and had it off road too, how is the Schwalbe not a 'proper' tyre when this definitely not 'proper' tyre works so well? Also know most off-road mountain bike tyres should be no less than 2.10 which both the Schwalbe mentioned are and would be silly to for the smaller 1.90 size for off-road! Someone told me the Schwalbe is not a 'proper' mountain bike tyre on this forum so would like to learn why, more so as have cycling before mtb tyres existed!

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NATURAL ANKLING
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Re: What's wrong with the Schwalbe Marathon Plus MTB?

Postby NATURAL ANKLING » 29 Dec 2014, 3:38pm

Hi,
You've been reading too many bike mags.

All you need off road is a semi block pattern with (preferably) a solid rubber centre portion.
The knobbly's with full block (aggressive) are slow and give no off road advantage but for more comfort at the expense of on road speed.

On motorcycles moto cross type tyres are only of use on deep mud, sand, and waterlogged grass fields.
A closed blocked pattern is best overall grip and road performance with best grip, bicycles need a solid centre section for ease of speed on the road.

Full block with wider gaps than the blocks are only of use in deep mud and loose surfaces (pure gravel) but the less rubber the worse grip on hard even ice surfaces.

The more aggressive the tyre the more comfort but less speed on / off road.

So yes a semi block is good for all conditions.
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NATURAL ANKLING
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Re: What's wrong with the Schwalbe Marathon Plus MTB?

Postby NATURAL ANKLING » 29 Dec 2014, 3:47pm

Hi,
1.9" is fine even with luggage, 2.1 unless you already have them or they are cheap not really necessary, 1.5 a bit slim but as a road bike mixed tyre would be the max you need.
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Si
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Re: What's wrong with the Schwalbe Marathon Plus MTB?

Postby Si » 30 Dec 2014, 11:53am

All you need off road is a semi block pattern with (preferably) a solid rubber centre portion.


No, all you need off road is a moderately wide slick. A combination of excellent riding ability and avoiding any terrain where that tyre is really out of its depth will do the rest.

Of course, for us mere mortals who want to ride anywhere and don't have Steve Peat like abilities, proper, fully treaded MTB tyres are always going to be so much better than slicks or semi-slicks.

As for the Schwalbe Marathon Plus MTB, there is more than one type: the 'tour' version won't be that good in typical British mud compared to a good MTB mud tyre or MTB all rounder as the tread isn't that well defined and it won't shed as easily. The plain 'Schwalbe Marathon Plus MTB' is an MTB tyre and will do you OK, but it has the two disadvantages of the normal M+....weighs a ton and can be a pig to get on and off the rim. If you are happy that the additional p*nct*re protection makes up for this then there's no reason why you shouldn't use them on an MTB.

Bikefayre
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Re: What's wrong with the Schwalbe Marathon Plus MTB?

Postby Bikefayre » 30 Dec 2014, 4:06pm

Thanks, hence my reason for changing to Continental E-Contact tyres at the rear and the Bronx Sport a more aggressive version of the Schwalbe City Jet for the front.

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NATURAL ANKLING
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Re: What's wrong with the Schwalbe Marathon Plus MTB?

Postby NATURAL ANKLING » 30 Dec 2014, 9:16pm

Hi,
If your are talked into a full MTB tyre (Title post) for on / off road then it will be more comfortable off road.
BUT it will be slower on road and off road and it will give less grip on the tarmac, and it will wear out very quickly.

Take your choice.

The title post tyre resembles a motorcycle "Motor Cross" Tyre, which is pretty useless on smooth surfaces, and will only out perform a standard trail tyre on grassy fields very deep mud and sand.

All the MTB guys use aggressive tyres which match the body armour and full suspension..............................

Tyre fling is what is used to shed debris from the tyre on a motorcycle, but only under power where you spin the rear tyre whilst moving and the centrifugal force removes the debris and when the tread comes back round to the ground the tread is free of what it picked up last rev and thus is fresh to give max grip.
The front tyre will bog down in the mud and make steering heavy and it will have a mind of its own which will then throw you off.
When you power the rear wheel and sit back the front wheel clears the mud and you then steer with the back wheel by moving your weight side to side, the front tyre glides across the top of the mud / loose surface.

NIETHER of these methods works on a human powered bike for obvious reasons, so an aggressive tyre does not work except on those surfaces that I have already mentioned.

Good luck looking hip and going slower than a shopper bike :D
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JohnChell
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Re: What's wrong with the Schwalbe Marathon Plus MTB?

Postby JohnChell » 25 Jan 2015, 12:22am

The biggest problem seems to be they don't make it for a 29er, otherwise i'd have these for my briddleway winter hack.
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Bikefayre
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Re: What's wrong with the Schwalbe Marathon Plus MTB?

Postby Bikefayre » 27 Jan 2015, 4:38pm

billys.co.uk do the 29 inch Schwalbe Smart Sam Plus tyre in 29 inch which does the same job as the Marathon Plus MTB.

ferdinand
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Re: What's wrong with the Schwalbe Marathon Plus MTB?

Postby ferdinand » 24 Apr 2015, 3:39pm

The Ice Spiker is a studded tyre for sheet ice or (?) packed snow. Perhaps it is OK for frozen single track too.

That is, for absolutely minimal use in most of the UK.

Personally I used Top CONTACT IIs this winter, which are more like the normal winter tyres for cars that the industry is shouting about , as opposed to studded tyres for ice.

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Bicycler
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Re: What's wrong with the Schwalbe Marathon Plus MTB?

Postby Bicycler » 26 Apr 2015, 10:39am

I'm too tight to go paying that amount for tyres! For road riding the Contis look to fill a niche, particularly for people with only one bike. If you have a spare bike then there's a decent argument for fitting spikes to it and deciding on the morning. Tyres like the Schwalbe Winter, Marathon Winter and Snow Stud are much less extreme than the Ice Spiker, which really is for off-road conditions.

Mattyfez
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Re: What's wrong with the Schwalbe Marathon Plus MTB?

Postby Mattyfez » 7 May 2015, 12:15pm

Spike tyres are designed for riding on ice for extra bite.

Riding them on tarmac or any solid surface would be lethal as the metal studs will slide. They will also wear out very quickly.

With schwalbe, you have 'big block' tyres like the hans damph and magic Mary which are more mud tyres, intermediate tyres like rocket ron and racing ralph for less weight, more cross country general purpose, which have smaller blocks and then slicks like the marathon etc.

Tread pattern really is a matter of what terrain you mainly ride.

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Re: What's wrong with the Schwalbe Marathon Plus MTB?

Postby Malaconotus » 7 May 2015, 1:13pm

Mattyfez wrote:Spike tyres are designed for riding on ice for extra bite.

Riding them on tarmac or any solid surface would be lethal as the metal studs will slide.


It isn't and they don't. Or, at least, there isn't any tarmac in Leeds which is even close to smooth enough that the studs slide on it. Noisy and slow, yes, but not lethal in my experience of a regular short journey through two winters.

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Si
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Re: What's wrong with the Schwalbe Marathon Plus MTB?

Postby Si » 7 May 2015, 1:15pm

Riding them on tarmac or any solid surface would be lethal as the metal studs will slide. They will also wear out very quickly.


I've found that in the four years that I've been using studded tyres I've not noticed them sliding on tarmac, let a lone being lethal. Yes, the studs will wear but not stupidly fast.

Bicycler
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Re: What's wrong with the Schwalbe Marathon Plus MTB?

Postby Bicycler » 7 May 2015, 3:38pm

Yep, it's an urban myth that they slide. They do sound like rice krispies though...

TheSkipper
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Re: What's wrong with the Schwalbe Marathon Plus MTB?

Postby TheSkipper » 23 Jun 2018, 4:32pm

Been using these on a Trek 4300 D for the last 4 years. They seem to work very well on home counties forest trails which are mostly mud, or gravel, or clay baked to the consistency of concrete in the summer. They are quite good on the inevitable road sections that are required to link up the trails. In fact, if you pump them up really hard, they roll quite well for a road ride. I have done this a few times when I have opened the shed to a flat on my road bike and not had time to fix it before a group ride.
Just had my second puncture if 4 years. The first was a short piece of baling wire, the second (today) a particularly long blackthorn spike. Slime tubes saved the day both times!
The are not as evil to get on the first time as Marathon plus touring tires and far less evil than Durano Plus on a road bike. I really hate stopping for punctures, so that and the weight are a compromise worth accepting.
The one time they have not performed well was when I tried actual mountains - well sort of mountains, as it was the Dark Peak area. In places where the trails are comprised of apple/grapefruit sized rocks mixed with gravel. Being narrow, they tended to get stuck, or bog when you hit the bigger stuff. I suspect the relative narrowness of this MTB tyre is the reason. It could also be my lack of experience on this terrain, but likely a mix of the two. I have also struggled a bit in deep mud, again because of the narrow profile
In summary for SE England they are very good most of the time. When it gets serious, you may be better with a 'full on' MTB tyre.