Singletracks single out the Porcupine RC for review and here's what they had to say...
You are probably familiar with the US-based editorial website and MTB community provider Singletracks. The rider-owned company has made a name for themselves in providing useful information for mountain-bikers everywhere, including reviews! This past winter proved to be the perfect opportunity to take our latest release, the Porcupine RC, for a spin and see what kind of trouble it can get itself into.
The man for the job was none other than Brian Gerow, a remote tech writer and all-round cycling enthusiast for Singletracks. Based in Torino, IT, he wasn't far away from our HQ to grab a set of Porc RCs and hit the trails.
Standing out in this review is Brian's bike. The high-pivot Deviate Highlander was his weapon for this review. As a more aggressive Trail/All-Mountain bike, it is perfectly suited to the riding style the Porcupine RC affords. Brian places the Porcupine RC in the following category: "Rated for the supportive and high-speed demands of downhill and enduro racing, or the added weight of e-bikes, the Onza Porcupine RC tire is your friend for sloppy riding and racing conditions."
The review begins with Brian stating that the spikes are widely spaced and are comparable to "trimmed quills" (just like on a Porcupine... coincidence?), which are shorter than traditional mud tires from other brands on the market. This cuts a little weight without losing any traction. The aggressive tire is only available in a 29x2.5" size with puncture-protecting gravity casing and tan sidewalls. "Yup, just one model", states Brian. The tiers weighed in at 1200g and therefore represent the toughest gumwalls on the market.
"A single 120TPI casing layer is backed up by a second layer from bead to bead and extra nylon bead protection to give the Porcupine RC all the support and puncture resistance riders want in a gravity tire."
Brian writes that the casings never lost any sealant despite being ridden on the rockiest of trails. According to Brian, in additional to the sealant, to this day the tires are still holding the same air pressures and would be good to go any time he chooses to swing a leg over the rig again.
"The nylon-fortified folding beads snapped into place with aplomb, leaving little to say about their tubeless performance other than installation was fast and simple. I mounted the tires front and rear, on rims with a 30mm internal measurement."
With the mounting and preparation of the tires a simple and easy task, it was time to gather some riding impressions. Brian is a self-proclaimed mud lover and was stoked to hit the trails, knowing that he had the perfect rocky descents with slimy dirt and loose conditions nearby to really but the tire through its paces. As riders of the tire here at Onza, this is what we really were looking forward to reading about in the review.
"The massive amount of open air between lugs helps them shed mud quickly so they can be ready to collect and shed anew."
The riding was exactly what Brian had hoped for. He described the tire by stating he found laughable amounts of grip and had left his friends a hot mess behind him while they struggled to keep up. The fast and loose descents are precisely what the Porcupine RC excels at and the tread is one of the few that will hold on when it’s really a mess outside.
"If you like wet riding, and you want to do it relatively fast, this tire is a fantastic choice. It not only widens the fine line between grip and slip, but those sturdy hunks of rubber will slow the roll brilliantly when things get too spicy."
Root riding proved to be a tough test, as it is for any tire on the market, mentions Brian, however, the Porcupine RC does a better job than most:
"If you’re riding with both brakes and eyeballs wide open they will roll right over the shiny tree-fingers most of the time, and quickly regain traction as soon as they find soil. Some tires sneeze and sniffle at the mere sight of wet roots, but these are not in that crappy camp."
The Porcupine RC shoulder lugs are well supported, both by their own rubber buttressing and the stout casing and they managed to stay on the stones countless times when Brian expected to slide. The shoulder lugs are both taller and softer than those in the center, helping them grip the earth on loose, off-camber trails, and none of the tread could be characterised as hard. With that said the center tread on the rear tire maintains about 70% of its original height, undeterred by Brian's skidding over the rocks.
"Porcupine RC tires have a rounder profile than most of the gravity tires I have tested recently, which likely helps them bite down into the mud rather than floating on it." As an experienced rider and reviewer, Brian correctly acknowledges that the lugs are angled to get the grip on all sorts of loose terrain, even holding a line on some of the sloppiest off-camber tracks he has ridden this season.
"Onza seems to have dialed the tread and casing rebound properties to give them a comfortable manner on the roughest of tracks, without any sudden snapping or squirming."
Finally, Brian concludes that the Porcupine RC tires are well worth the €69.90 price tag (depending on region) for folks who genuinely love wet riding.
Thanks Brian for the review! Make sure to read the original or also view any other exciting content over at Singletracks.
Interested in finding out more about the Porcupine RC or want to buy some? Click here for more