We just got a couple sets of new tires in for review: Continental’s X-King 29er and Syncros’ FLavor tubeless ready tires in both 26″ and 29er sizes.
Syncros FLavor (the FL is capped to indicate that they’re part of their Freakin’ Light collection) was first spied at the NAHBS show in Ritchey’s booth on their new 29er. The tread pattern is really short with small knobs, making it look really fast for dry, hard packed trail conditions. Above is the 29×2.25, which weighs in at 619g.
Jump past the break for the others, plus some inside info on Continental’s 2012 lineup and rolling changes to their current tires…
The 26×2.1 version comes in at 574g. These are both for folding bead (obviously), dual-compound, tubeless ready tires. We can’t compare this to claimed weights because these tires are so new they’re not even listed on Syncros’ website yet. In fact, I think these tires were from their first run and sent over for inspection before the full shipment arrives. Pricing TBD.
Weighed here is the 29×2.2 at 709g.
The claimed weight for this one is 700g, which is pretty close and completely within expected variations, and we’ve found their listed weights to be fairly consistent with reality (we’ve reviewed the 26″ Race Kings here, as an example). They also offer a 29×2.4 at a claimed 760g. Check their website to see full range of options and weights, they have a ton of casings on tap.
And about those casings…
Excluding their UST models, Continental doesn’t make “tubeless ready” claims yet…that’ll change within the next couple months as new casings arrive at stores in March and April as a rolling change…but they don’t exclude the use of sealant in their warranties like a few other tire brands.
I’ve run the Race King 29er’s tubeless with Stan’s sealant for about seven months and ridden the snot out of them at the Breck Epic and in Asheville, our local trails and more, and they’ve held up beautifully. I finally (recently) managed to get an elusive hole in one of them that the sealant doesn’t seem to be closing up, but that can happen with any tire. While they do offer a UST version of some of their 26″ tires, and UST tubeless-ready ProTection versions of their 29er tires will roll out across the range for 2012, we’d say save the weight and run their Protection and standard versions tubeless with sealant.
It’s worth mentioning, though, that we would NOT run their Supersonic or Racesport versions as tubeless at this time. The casings are too porous and will make for a maintenance nightmare, not to mention reduced reliability. We’ve got word they’re working on their Racesport line to improve the density of the sidewall to better hold sealant, but it’ll be late summer at best (our prediction) before those tires are ready.
Oh, and all these different casings? They’re mainly for the 26″ tires at present, but look for more options in 29″ sizes late this year as 2012 products.