MAXXIS Minion FBF Tire
Maxxis is a widely celebrated and trusted company for making MTB tires that can handle whatever it is you can dish out. So earlier this year, when I was building up a custom fatbike, I decided to finally give Maxxis a try. For my first ever pair of their tires, I went with the Minion FBF to go on my 50mm 27.5-inch rims.
The lugs on this tire are HUGE! I was initially very excited about all of the traction I would be able to get out of these. They set up tubeless flawlessly on my 50mm Duroc Sunringle rims.
My first ride impressions: I was very happy with the way they cornered on trail. In really loose decomposed granite that I habitually slide through, the Minions gave me complete control the whole ride. But the tires felt heavy and made each pedal stroke seem infinitely harder than they needed to be. Upon doing some research, I came to learn that they are, in fact, some pretty heavy tires.
The Minion did everything I want it to and inspired confidence in both loose gravel and on snow. I was looking for a tire that would be able to handle the shoulder season while I awaited snow riding conditions in central Colorado and they performed well for that purpose.
But ultimately, these tires were designed to be a snow riding tire and that puzzles me. As a fatbike tire, these things are massively inefficient where it matters most: one’s rolling mass. I see the over-built nature of these tires as more of a negative than I do a positive. But, the Minions would really shine in the circumstance of a steep climb on sugar-snow. There, the siped lugs anchor well enough that you could, conceivably stay on your bike in the steep! Huzzah!
The Minion FBF seemed too meaty to do any fatbiking efficiently, and I ended up selling my Minions after less than 10 rides on them. As a fatbike racer, I need my tires to corner well, provide traction in the loose stuff, but still be fast rolling enough to allow for break-aways in the flats. I didn’t see that as a possibility with the Minion FBFs. I would consider running the Maxxis Minion as a 2.3 tire on a downhill or an enduro bike. For fatbiking, I’ve concluded that this tire is overkill.