I love plus tyres but....
I make no secret of the fact that I love Plus tyres, whether it be 29er or 27.5/650b the ride quality, simplicity and weight saving is faster, smoother and is far more user friendly both in the workshop and especially out on the trail for pretty much all enviroments. (Unless you prefer a more gravity rich playground).
Saying that the Maxxis Ikons 27.5 x 2.8 I have/had on my Travers RUSSTi EVO are almost bald and have served me well over the last almost 3 years but with winter approaching it is time for a change.
The one area that the Plus (and fat) tyres are not that great in is mud, especially hard pack with a layer of greasy crud.
So....the Ikons have been binned and replaced with a set of Continental Cross Kings 27.5 x 2.2. Luckily when building up the RUSSTi EVO I had planned to do this and specced the Nextie Premium 41mm rims which can handle most tyres sized up to 3"
As you can see the from the photo below the Ikons 2.8 are quite a bit larger and measure 69mm on the 41mm rims and the Cross kings come in at 57mm. There is only a 12mm (17%) difference but that isnt the full story, the Ikon have a larger volume and thus a larger outer diameter so the ride and feel is quite different. You can feel the Cross Kings are much harsher due to the lack of volume but do cut through the mud better and give more of a bite in the slippery corners.
With the lower speed and the extra cushioning due to the softer surfaces its worth the compromises but come the drier months the Plus tyres will be straight back on!
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