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Tire Pressure Ranges for Off-Road

Discussion in 'Thumpers' started by uncleGarage, Sep 27, 2018.

  1. uncleGarage

    uncleGarage Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2014
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    San Diego
    What tire pressure do you run when riding rocky single track?

    I hear some people run at 14 PSi front and rear. Is this the general consensus? It's a game between reaping the befits of airing down and increasing the changes of a bent rim. I know the guys who run the Tubliss system run very low but I don't know the details.

    I searched for existing threads but didn't find any...please point me to any that you know about.

    I'm on a 2017 KtM 350 EXC-F.

    Thanks.
    #1
  2. alvincullumyork

    alvincullumyork Ol Two Flags Supporter

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    Go lower and lower until you get a pinch flat. Then go back up. It really depends person to person. I switched from tubes to Tubliss almost instantly and loved it for a couple of years. I'm going to pretty much all mousses now for racing though.
    #2
    uncleGarage likes this.
  3. uncleGarage

    uncleGarage Been here awhile

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    Thanks alvincullumyork. That's an unique approach and one I hadn't considered. Do you still run Tubliss...sounds like you switched back? I had to look up Mousses. In case anyone else is in the same boat see this link.
    #3
    alvincullumyork likes this.
  4. alvincullumyork

    alvincullumyork Ol Two Flags Supporter

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    I still run tubes in my MX bike because all it ever sees is the track and sand. My offroad bike has a mousse in the rear and tubliss up front, I'm going to change out the front for a mousse the next tire I put on though. My 950 has mousses in it now and I may switch back and forth between tubliss and mousses in it for racing and travel.

    I race a lot and I hate flats. I know a couple of trail riders who run mousses more who run tubliss and most run tubes.
    #4
    uncleGarage likes this.
  5. CDN Rick

    CDN Rick Canoodia Eh?

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    Tubes are fine for guys who just like to putt around. Tubliss is perfect for trail riders and semi-serious racers. Most really serious racers use mousses.

    Personally I use tubliss front and rear. And typically run around 10 front and 8 rear. I’ll go as low as 5 front and 3 rear though depending on terrain.

    You should really learn to “feel” the pressure in your tires rather than measure it though. Different rubbber compounds, knob types, sidewall strenghts, and ambient temperatures can all affect what your pressure should be. And you can’t “measure” any of those without knowing the feel. Ask some very experienced riders if you can feel the pressure in their tires. Then copy that.
    #5
  6. timeOday

    timeOday Long timer

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    I would suggest going lower until you can feel the rim bottoming out on the tire ('clunk!') more than every once in a while, then go back up a bit. You can feel it through the bars. I am using Tubliss and have bottomed out the tire quite a bit without any apparent damage, but at that point I don't think it's helping traction, or helping the bike track straight, or doing the bike or your arms any favors.

    Straight answer: It's gonna be about or a little under 10 psi.
    #6
    alvincullumyork likes this.
  7. Bucho

    Bucho DAMNrider

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    I ride in a lot rocky terrain. I run 10-12 in front. I would run around 8 rear with tubes. Now with Tubliss in the rear I run around 5.
    #7
  8. malignity

    malignity Wonton

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    12 front, 12 rear here in all terrain (even pavement! OMG!). UHD tubes with 10oz of slime in each.
    #8
    2WheelNeal likes this.
  9. Zuber

    Zuber Zoob Supporter

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    +1 on just feeling the tire pressure. Some tires only need a tube top them out on the rim, they are so stiff you can run zero pressure.

    The Tubliss kits are great. We had a racer come in with a big chunk cut out of his tire, probably 2x7" big. He never noticed the loss in pressure or traction.
    #9
    Bucho likes this.
  10. mylsmkj

    mylsmkj Long timer

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    Holy hell dude!
    #10
  11. Zuber

    Zuber Zoob Supporter

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    At 12 psi, it would be better to put the slime between the tire and tube. My last two flats have been from abrasion. I use a lot of talc too.
    #11
  12. RideFreak

    RideFreak Torque Junky

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    There isn't a magic number.
    #12
  13. malignity

    malignity Wonton

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    I had standard tubes and no slime and got my first flat in 30 years this spring. I intend to go another 30 years without another. :lol3
    #13
    mylsmkj likes this.
  14. Yinzer Moto

    Yinzer Moto Sloppy 300 rider Supporter

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    Like @CDN Rick above, i run tubliss and I’ll run as low as 5 front and 3 rear. When running those pressures you need to know not dive into a rock garden in 5th gear. If conditions are drier but still rocky, I’ll go with 9 front and 6 rear. Our west, traction is a lot better and the trails are more open, I tend to go with more of the 12/12 pressures. At those pressures they are similar to the mousse and if I lived out there, I’d be tempted to run them.

    Back east, sometimes we will find ourselves at the bottom of a ravine, stuck, spinning tires, being able to drop a few psi in those conditions are the difference between pushing the bike out and riding the bike out.
    #14
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  15. Dan950ser

    Dan950ser Two Wheeled Addict

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    Nitro Mousse front and Tubliss rear with about 4 psi is my go to setup. If I’m riding Baja or a very long ride I’ll run mousse front and rear.
    #15
  16. mylsmkj

    mylsmkj Long timer

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    You’re hard pressed to pinch flat a rear at 8 psi with UHD tubes unless they’re Michelin UHD then you can flat those crappy tubes any time! Bridgestone is infinitely better UHD tube. The 10 ounces of slime won’t help much unless you get a nail or screw.

    I have tubliss front and rear but after riding TT bikes with mousse front I’m inclined to go that route and tubliss rear.
    #16
    Dan950ser and malignity like this.
  17. malignity

    malignity Wonton

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    Technically I'm still running the stock rear tube, front was the flat, so I did the UHD to the front and slime to both. I expected the slime would make me have to rebalance them but nope.
    #17
    mylsmkj likes this.
  18. Grreatdog

    Grreatdog Long timer Supporter

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    You think? :lol3

    One my 640 front tire, I started at 15 psi and went up to over 20 psi with an MT21 and was still getting rock pinch flats. I must have gotten ten total. But 15 psi in a Motoz Desert HT and I got zero flats over the life of the tire all the same routes.

    Then I put a MT21 on the front of 525 and have gotten zero flats on those same routes running 15 psi. Probably because the bike is so much lighter. On the back, the Mountain Hybrid could care less about air. I probably wouldn't notice a flat.
    #18
  19. wizz

    wizz Up a creek......

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    over yonder on the north coast of ca
    SoCal, probably between 10-13 fir trail, 15 front and rear for Baja or fast desert. That’s what I run on the 350 with tubes when I’m down there.
    #19
  20. JensEskildsen

    JensEskildsen Long timer

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    Depends a lot on the tires/sidewall, the bike (weight of it and the rider) and the surface you ride on.
    For me: 14 psi is a pretty good starting point for a single cylinder dualsport bike, riding offroad.
    #20