I was wondering if the hardness of the tires makes a difference when you ride on different types of ground.
Austin WilkinsonAbsolutely! The “hardness” of a tire is generally referred to as compound, which dictates what type of terrain the rubber is designed for. In general, most tire companies produce some sort of soft-terrain, hard-compound tire for mud and loam. The blocks need to be stiff to bite into the sand and mud. For a hard-terrain tire for hard-packed dirt the compound will actually be softer so that the rubber actually grips at dirt and rock. A trails tire is the softest of all, and the knobs on those tires feel softer than a pencil eraser! As a rule, the more pliable soft-compound tires wear out more quickly than firmer rubber. The tire type that you run has a huge effect on performance; for example, a hard-terrain tire is not going to hook up in mud like a tire made for sand/mud, and vice versa. Most riders make a ballpark assumption as to what type of terrain they’ll be riding and then put the corresponding tire on their bike, while factory racers often change rubber between motos to get maximum performance. If you ride on the same type of dirt all the time, it is easy to choose a tire. If you ride varied terrain, most riders choose an intermediate tire, since few riders change tires for every ride. Hope this helps! -Chris