RIP XRs…=-(

17 10 2009
Schwalbe Marathon Dureme

Schwalbe Marathon Dureme

Well I’m sad to report that Schwalbe seems poised to terminate the Marathon XR which has been a favourite tire of mine for a few years now.  I’ve got ‘em on my Surly LHT and my Surly Big Dummy.  I think I have a spare XR in 26″ and one in 700c so I’ll be good for a while longer given how hard wearing these tires are, but sooner or later I’ll wear out my last XR and it will be the end of an era.

On the positive side Schwalbe has three new touring tires in the Marathon line up which seem like they will be able to fill the shoes of the XR capably:

  • Marathon Supreme: is a semi-slick touring tire for those paved road only rides where you want durability and puncture protection in a faster tire.
  • Marathon Extreme: is a knobbier and lighter cousin of the XR that can handle dirt and gravel roads.
  • Marathon Dureme: seems to be somewhere in the middle with more tread than the Supreme and less tread than the Extreme.  It’s supposed to be very long wearing.

We may be looking back in a couple years and not missing the XRs at all.  The new Schwalbe touring tires may be better and we’ll be happy they made the switch.  Of course it’s possibly we’ll be looking back wistfully at the XR wishing they still made it….only time will tell.  The thing the XR had going for it was a long history of working well for the hardcore bike tourist.  That’s a reputation Schwalbe’s new rubber will have to earn.

If you are a Schwalbe XR fan there is still stock of this tire at many vendors so grab some while you can.


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12 responses

17 10 2009
jdmitch

Love my Supremes. Just saw the Dureme the other day, looks like a tough, tough tire.

18 10 2009
Gerco

I really like the look of those Duremes… Shame they don’t make them in 2.25…

So i guess i’ll opt for the Extremes instead on my BD…

18 10 2009
thelazyrando

They may still come out with more sizes as it’s a new tire.

4 02 2010
Ian Dickson

I ride my Supremes (700×35) on gravel roads all the time. They’re not ideal for that, but if you’re going back and forth between surfaces, they’re a good choice.

Has anyone tried the Duremes? How are they on pavement?

10 02 2010
Tom

Any feeling on how much more “nobbly” the extremes are compared to the XRs? I’m getting set up for a mostly off road/dirt road tour.

I’ve been doing weekends on the Munda-biddi trail in Western Australia using a pair of 26×2.00″ XRs as the base set-up with a Kenda Nevegal 2.35″ for use on the front for the more technical/less grippy stuff. The idea being to have the 3rd tire as a “spare” as well. This in contrast to an earlier tour I did in the UK where some friends were carrying Specialized Hemispheres as their pavement/non-technical off-road tires and a 2nd set of mtb tires for trails/technical off-road (West Highland Way in Scotland etc). The Australian stuff I do has often quite deep v. loose pea-gravel and the Nevegal is great for this.

If the 2.25 Schwalbe Marathon Extreme was sufficiently more grippy than my existing 2″ XR I’d seriously think about take one along on the bigger tour as a good “spare” and for using in similar scenarios as I’m using the Nevegal at the moment. There’d also be a c.200g weight saving (Nevegal 850g according to Chainreactioncyles in the UK vs 550-600g for S M Extreme).

10 02 2010
thelazyrando

The Extremes are knobby enough to be worth using instead of your XRs. I didn’t find them terribly slow so you could just use Extremes all the time…saves swapping out tires.

28 07 2010
Rob Krochenski

Hi Vic,

For what its worth, I’ll offer a comment on this aging post:

*Today I ordered four (for friends & myself) sets of XRs directly from the Bellingham Schwalbe warehouse. While I cannot find any locally (Vancouver area), the warehouse apparently still has quite a number left over as long as you are ok with 26X2.25. (I did not inquire about 700Cs, etc.)

*Because the XRs are a discontinued line, they are selling them at half price ($35.00 US), which tends to overcome many considerations between them and the newer Extremes, etc.

*Thorn’s pdf brochure respecting their Nomad has some insightful comments about the Extremes (and other models including the Dureme) that may prove helpful for those considering that option. It would seem that the value of the “EX” for the seriously laden epic globetrotter has at least one caveat worth considering. Apparently Andy at Thorn has found that while the sidewall of the EX seems to have integrity, it is flexible enough that it tends to roll the tire over in brisk cornering till he is riding on the rim. His remedy was to use a heavier downhill tube (schraeder only).

* Also for what its worth, after having one too many flats on my Continental Town and Countrys, I got fed up and introduced to Schwalbe. I paid the money, got the 26X2 Supremes and have not had a flat yet…three years later. The are light and responsive and have accommodated not only pavement but light duty gravel and dyke type trails without complaint (although admittedly not the first choice for a steady diet of loose stuff).

I am at the serious end of being what is affectionately known as a Clydesdale type rider. These tires have instilled great confidence in me during these three seasons and show very little wear. I just noticed for the first time a very small crack on one of the sidewalls, a phenomenon I have read about respecting a number of the Schwalbe line.

QUESTION: I am wondering if you can tell me if it is likely that the 26X2.25 will be accommodated by my Axiom Rainrunner fenders (or any other fenders you are acquainted with)? I took the plunge anyway because of price and reputation and will have to sort out that matter in due course.

Thanks Vic. It is always a pleasure to anticipate your blog renderings. And welcome to BC!

28 07 2010
Rob Krochenski

Hey Vic,

For what its worth, I’ll offer a comment on this aging post:

*Today I ordered four (for friends & myself) sets of XRs directly from the Bellingham Schwalbe warehouse. While I cannot find any locally (Vancouver area), the warehouse apparently still has quite a number left over as long as you are ok with 26X2.25. (I did not inquire about 700Cs, etc.)

*Because the XRs are a discontinued line, they are selling them at half price ($35.00 US), which tends to overcome many considerations between them and the newer Extremes, etc.

*Thorn’s pdf brochure respecting their Nomad has some insightful comments about the Extremes (and other models including the Dureme) that may prove helpful for those considering that option. It would seem that the value of the “EX” for the seriously laden epic globetrotter has at least one caveat worth considering. Apparently Andy at Thorn has found that while the sidewall of the EX seems to have integrity, it is flexible enough that it tends to roll the tire over in brisk cornering till he is riding on the rim. His remedy was to use a heavier downhill tube (schraeder only).

* Also for what its worth, after having one too many flats on my Continental Town and Countrys, I got fed up and introduced to Schwalbe. I paid the money, got the 26X2 Supremes and have not had a flat yet…three years later. The are light and responsive and have accommodated not only pavement but light duty gravel and dyke type trails without complaint (although admittedly not the first choice for a steady diet of loose stuff).

I am at the serious end of being what is affectionately known as a Clydesdale type rider. These tires have instilled great confidence in me during these three seasons and show very little wear. I just noticed for the first time a very small crack on one of the sidewalls, a phenomenon I have read about respecting a number of the Schwalbe line.

QUESTION: I am wondering if you can tell me if it is likely that the 26X2.25 will be accommodated by my Axiom Rainrunner fenders (or any other fenders you are acquainted with)? I took the plunge anyway because of price and reputation and will have to sort out that matter in due course.

Thanks Vic. It is always a pleasure to anticipate your blog renderings. And welcome to BC!

28 07 2010
thelazyrando

It will be pretty hard to find fenders that fit 57mm tires. Generally I buy fenders 10mm wider than the tire….so in this case that would be ~70mm fenders…I can’t recall seeing fenders this wide and even if you found them it’s unlikely they would fit in your frame. Even Thorn bikes that pride themselves on tire clearance only offer clearance for 2″ tires + fenders…you can run a 2.25″ tire in their frames without fenders.

I would mount up those tires and then see how much room there is left in your fork/frame for a fender.

What frame are you putting them in?

28 07 2010
Rob Krochenski

Cannondale F400 frame.

29 07 2010
thelazyrando

@ Rob – I would be quite surprised if you fit the 2.25″ XRs in that frame with fenders. I hope you don’t run into issues with the 2.25″ XR hitting the frame..that bike probably wasn’t designed to run tires fatter then 2.1″ since it’s an XC rig.

25 05 2011
Surly LHT Update « The Lazy Randonneur

[…] I cleaned up the rest of the rear end and reinstalled everything. I love the OMM racks and the Schwalbe Marathon XR tires. Velo Orange fender up […]

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