Now That’s What I’m Talking About

By blackmountaincycles,

Filed under: Things

When I set out designing the Monster Cross frames 9 years ago, the tire I designed it around was the Panaracer Firecross 700×45.  At the time, it was the biggest “cross” tire available.  There were some that had short product cycles, like WTB’s MutanoRaptor 44, but the FireCross 45 had an actual knob-to-knob measurement of 50mm and it’s been available almost all the time since it was introduced.  The FireCross worked great in the dirt, but was a dog on the road.  The goal of the Monster Cross for my use is that is goes on the road to get to the dirt and then back on the road to get home.  There were other tires that would be much better for my purposes, so emails went out to friends at WTB and Kenda.  Between then and the present, there have been a lot of great tires introduced that make me happy:  Bruce Gordon’s Rock ‘n Road 43, WTB’s Nano 40 and Riddler 45, Clément’s X’Plor MSO 40…there’s a bunch more, but those are what I have the most time on.

One day a few weeks ago, I followed a link to a Raleigh bike model and saw it had what were labeled Clément LZY 50 tires.  What’s this?  An email to my friend at Clément, Donn Kellogg and he confirmed the tire, but clarified that it’s name has been changed to MSO, since it has the MSO tread pattern.  Tubeless?  Yes.  And as chance would have it, a distributor for Clément had a shipment of the tires arriving by air fresh off the production floor after the Thanksgiving holiday.  I’ll take a box of them, thank you.

So, here they are and they are plump!  They measure out at 50mm on a WTB ChrisCross i19 rim and weight about 800g.  They have what feels like the 60tpi casing that is tubeless ready.  And they’re big.  And they fit just fine in the Monster Cross frame.  And I can’t wait to ride them.  Probably when it dries out a bit, but wow.  I’ve been waiting for something like this for a long time.  For sale now in the shop and on the site.

Clément X'Plor MSO 700 x 50

Clément X’Plor MSO 700 x 50

Clément X'Plor MSO 700 x 50

Clément X’Plor MSO 700 x 50

Clément X'Plor MSO 700 x 50

Clément X’Plor MSO 700 x 50

Clément X'Plor MSO 700 x 50

Clément X’Plor MSO 700 x 50

Clément X'Plor MSO 700 x 50

Clément X’Plor MSO 700 x 50

(What’s playing:  Cheap Trick Come On Come On)


6 responses to “Now That’s What I’m Talking About”

  1. Benjamin says:

    Neat, Mike! Can you tell whether these will clear a Mini-moto straddle wire with enough comfort?

    I’m currently running 1.95″ Furious Freds on my Monstercross, and loving them. They roll surprisingly nicely on the road, and have enough bite for anything I do in Marin. They measure out to 48mm, also on Chris Crosses. They’re under mini-motos with a few mm of clearance, but I don’t think I’d want to cut it any closer.

    • blackmountaincycles says:

      Benjamin, just checked the tire on my Falconer made frame with Paul Minimotos and there is 4mm of clearance to the cross cable. Also checked on the Taiwan made frame and there should be 3-4mm clearance.

  2. Tim says:

    Mike, you are a Wizard with your frame design, able to fit such “modern” balloon tires, and yet keep a classic tidy look. Does it get weird with really small frame sizes? Anyways, keep it up, you are “pressuring” the tire manufacturers in the best way.

  3. Trey says:

    Hey guys. where did you get the 700 x 50 x’plors? i cant find that size ANYWHERE? i am in SoCal. Happy Holidays!

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