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  • SDW Tyre choice 27.5×2.6
  • dlmdlm

    Sorry I know there has been a bit of chat about this in the past but many of the suggestions are out of date. Pesky manufacturers seem to change their models. :/

    So doing the SDW over two days on a HT and looking to go tubeless with a fast rolling well protected tyre, 27.5 rim and 2.6 wide (am guessing 2.5 should be ok). Any suggestions/advice appreciated.

    Premier Icon nedrapier

    Bonty SE2? Or XR2, depending on your protection/weight preferences.

    Van Halen

    crossmark. use teh fastest rolling tyres you can find. you`ll need minimal grip and the least rolling resistance feasible.

    i`d also pump them up fairly hard for teh flinty descents and to reduce power loss through a wobbly tyre. i did it as part of the BHF ride and the first descent out of winchester was just carnage with people fixing punctures every 10 paces – it was pretty funny – what did people expect?

    having done it i recon a 29er with narrowish tyres and minimal suspension would be my weapon of choice if i did it again. much of it is just mile munching rather than anything tough/fun to ride.

    why you`d do a double i dont know – it is boring enough one way!

    Premier Icon mccraque

    SDW rider here!

    I am riding a Bonty XR4 on the front.
    Had a XR3 on the back…. which was great until I pinch flatted it at the bead. The XR4 is tough for the weight. I did a 55 mile stretch on it just this sunday, and it was fine for distance and great for comfort.

    I’ve previously used Schwalbe – Nobby Nic on the front, and a Ron on the back. I would avoid the RON on the rear. the flint tore it to shreds on every ride. That was a 2.8 though.

    Spesh Slaughter grid on the rear would also be a good shout.

    Premier Icon gazzab1955

    Did it with a mate in 2016 over 2 days, really enjoyed the ride, great views looking north and south. Nothing too gnarly, you could probably do it on a gravel bike, I used my carbon Scott Genius full susser with Panaracer XC (26 x 2.1) on front and rear. Some of the descents are quite rocky/flinty, so you do want a decent tyre. We had two punctures each (all Blackthorn or the like) over the 100 miles, neither of us were using tubeless at the time.

    A few tips, I guess you have done some research and don’t mean to “teach you to suck eggs”……

    We stopped almost exactly halfway at The Sportsman Inn in Amberley, this splits the ride into 50 miles and 5000ft of climbing each day. I know people do it in a day, but don’t see how you can enjoy that. Part of the pleasure of doing it (for me) is stopping and taking in the views etc. It’s about the journey not the destination (or the Strava stats!).

    Don’t expect to come across lots of shops/pubs on the trail, you have to ride off of the trail into villages to find them.

    There are lots of places to get water on the trail, if its as hot as when we did it in August, you need to take every opportunity to fill bottles and bladders. I carried a 750ml bottle and a 2lt camelback.

    We picked a couple of dry sunny days so that minimised the amount of kit we needed to take and it all went in saddlebags and a medium sized (25-30lt) backpack.

    The first day was really good riding and we seemed to get a lot of downhill distance for not much climbing. The same amount of climbing on the second day seemed far more arduous, especially near Eastbourne where the last 3 climbs seemed to go on forever!

    Enjoy it and if possible take your time so the photos and memories will be that much better.

    Premier Icon Painey

    Spesh Slaughter grid on the rear would also be a good shout.

    I took this man’s advice and rate it so far. Usually going cheap on their website too. Just get it in Grip compound though or it will cut too easily. A schwalbe Rock Razor is also a good shout, being practically identical.

    It all depends on too many variables to say ‘this is the tyre’; weight, riding style, trail awareness etc.

    I’m on Mezcals for my next one cos they are just great for grip (best in the dry), low resistance (lower is available, but a Spotted Cat would only last minutes), puncture resistance (graphene lined), but its all personal choice and then down to a bit of luck too.

    Premier Icon OwenP

    Probably listen to robcolliver, he’s spent a few hours on the SDW…

    I’d also be on Vittoria XC tyres for the SDW, but specifically the TNT versions which have held up well for me on South Downs flints. Sagauro in my case, good in the dry and fine in the damp. If it’s wet I’d spend the weekend in the pub in Winchester instead of trying the SDW (no joke) but then I live here so I can do it “whenever” 🙂

    I am local to SDW and I tried Specialized Slaughter Grid front and rear. Tough and fast rolling, not sure I’d want to do the entire SDW on it though but maybe it’d be ok.

    I’ve previously sliced a Conti X-King Protection and a On-one Smorgasbord open on the South Downs flints.

    I do wonder if a cheaper lower TPI tyre might work fine too.

    Are the Continental “Performance” tyres with shieldwall etc any good?


    @gazzab1955. Thanks, always happy to be given advice. Have been looking at previous SDW threads as well, taking any tips where I can find them. We were thinking of doing around 60 miles the first day, taking the pressure off for the second day and those final climbs. Yet to plan where that means for the overnight. Early starts also should help. It’s definitely not the Strava stats for me! Will be doing it with my son so more for a shared experience.

    Thanks all for the advice on the tyres, tempted by the Bontys and the Spesh but think will go for the Mezcals.

    Don’t live too far away so will be making a last minute decision based on the weather.We’re up to 40m rides in the Surrey Hills for training, and will be up to 50m before we go. Hoping that is preparation enough! My son has the confidence of youth – I’m a little more wary!


    Brand new Mezcal + ardent race Exo. Both punctured. Mezcal was a rip too. My mate is doing it end of month and I advised tougher. He has got Slaughter front and rear now and rates them. I’ve only ever used Slaughter rear and it is a great tyre. Very cheap too on Spesh store.

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