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ATV Product Review: Maxxis Bighorn Radial

1538 Views 8 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  Jaxom

<h1>Maxxis Bighorn Tire Review</h1>
			<p align="left">Living in an ATV friendly  state like West    Virginia  really has its advantages. We can  legally ride on practically any road that does not have a center line. Having this ability translates into an  infinite amount of trail access. Riding  to [url="javascript:;"][IMG][/IMG][/url]all these trails means we ride quite a bit on blacktop. Unfortunately, ATV tires wear out faster than  car and truck tires.</p>


Over the past few years I have  gone through many different types of tires.  My tire of choice is normally one with aggressive lugs that was designed  for the mud. This type of tire fit the bill quite nicely. Unfortunately, the tires seemed to wear quickly  and required me to replace them before I (or really my wallet) was ready to.</p>

I sought out to conduct my  own research or quest so to speak for a tire that was neither a dedicated mud  tire or a tame little trail tire. I  based my research on the following criteria:</p>
              [*]Aggressive tread design, but not a mud tire

			  [*]Wear characteristics

I wanted a tread design that  was more aggressive than stock, but not as aggressive as a mud tire. Another key element of the tread design was  the need for the tire to have a center. This design provides a smooth ride on  the pavement and hard pack trails. The  last thing I wanted to do was add a lot of unsprung weight, this meant my new  tires needed to stay under 35 lbs. per tire.  Rubber compound was another area I needed to pay close attention too. I  wanted a tire that was going to give me more than 1000 miles of tread  life. Very few tires can do this in my  opinion without showing a lot of wear. Lastly,  I needed a tire that was durable. I am  very hard on tires and for some reason I’m always the guy in the group who gets  a punctured sidewall. Quite frankly, that was starting to get old.</p>


With all of the above  criteria in mind I began my research on the web. Searching through forum after forum, I kept  coming up with the [url=""]Maxxis[/url] Bighorn.  Everyone has always touted this tire as being the “best all around tire”  and “tough as nails.” But was it  really? I think I just narrowed my quest  down to one.[IMG][/IMG]</p>

At first glance, the [url=""]Maxxis[/url]  Bighorn looked just like an ordinary tire to me. Not extremely aggressive, but aggressive  enough to tackle nearly all of my riding needs.  My decision was made, I was going to give these tires a try. I decided on the 26” X 9” X 12” for the front  and the 26” X 12” X 12” for the rear.</p>


Here are some of the  features and benefits of the [url=""]Maxxis[/url] Bighorn Radial.</p>
			<ul type="disc">
              [*]Radial construction offers a significantly       smoother ride over rough trails. 
			  [*]Extra lugs on the shoulder protect the sidewall       and rim. 
			  [*]Raised white lettering on one side. 

			  [*]Tire is suitable for a variety of terrains such       as: desert, dirt, and rocks.
			<h2>Maxxis Bighorn First Inspection</h2>

Upon first inspection I thought,  “What have I done?” These tires looked  huge! This wasn’t a problem it’s just that I wasn’t expecting the Bighorns to  be this big. A word of caution when  choosing sizes for this tire would be to choose accordingly. As it turns out, the [url=""]Maxxis[/url] Bighorns tend to  run a little larger in size. For  instance, the 26” diameter tires we have are really closer to a 27” tire. As stated earlier, this isn’t a problem or a  negative for us. What this did was allow us to experiment with air pressures and  vary our ride height. </p>


[IMG][/IMG]The [url=""]Maxxis[/url] Bighorns also  come with raised white lettering on one side. These tires are non-directional  which means you can mount them any way you wish. Another thing we noticed on each tires was a  yellow dot on the sidewall.[url="javascript:;"][IMG][/IMG][/url] [url=""]Maxxis[/url] calls  this dot a “Balancing dot”. I was told  when mounting these tires on the rim; align the dot with the valve stem for a  better tire balance. Although I have  nothing to compare this to, I did what [url=""]Maxxis[/url] recommended and it seemed to work  just fine. Another thing I thought worth  noting was the sidewall. When  transporting these tires un-mounted I couldn’t help but notice how little the  sidewalls flexed while carrying them. Very  few tires hold that quality. For example, the radial tires we swapped out for these  flexed quite a bit when carried in the same manner. </p>


One complaint that surfaced  over and over during my research was weight. Most owners complained that the  bighorns were a heavy tire. Granted  these tires are much heavier than the stock tires folks replace them with, but  I personally felt the weight of the tire was comparable to most other 6 ply  rated radial tires in their class.</p>

Here is a list of the [url=""]Maxxis[/url]  M917/M918 Bighorn Radial weights:</p>

[b]Tire Size[/b] [b]Tire  Weight[/b]

			  AT25x8R12   21.4 

			  AT25X10R12    27.1 

			  AT26x9R12   25.7 

			  AT27x9R12   26.2 

			  AT26X12R12   30.6 

			  AT27X12R12   32.8 

			  AT26X9R14   22.9 

			  AT26X11R14   27.7 </p>

			<h2>Maxxis Bighorn Ride Report[url="javascript:;"][IMG][/IMG][/url]</h2>

The first ride was really  just a test of ride quality and the ability to negotiate certain  obstacles. We used a large log to test  how easily the [url=""]Maxxis[/url] Bighorn would climb it.  I was very impressed with this activity.  The [url=""]Maxxis[/url] Bighorns seemed to wrap themselves around objects such as logs  and rocks. Most of the tires we have tested  would slip on the log or rocks. Traction  was very good across the all of the terrain we tested them in.</p>


[url="javascript:;"][IMG][/IMG][/url]Handling is where these  tires really shine. The radial design  soaks up the bumps on the trail and the sidewall flex is minimal during high  speed cornering. On pavement, the Bighorns  tended to ride a little rough at first.  We chocked this up to a “break in” period that most tires require. After approximately a 100 miles I noticed the  tires had smoothed out nicely. The best  tire pressure we found was 7 PSI for overall trail riding. A few times we took the pressure down to 3  PSI when experimenting with certain trail obstacles and not once had a problem  with loosing a bead.</p>

We were really fortunate to  get the chance to test these tires when we did, because as luck would have it  we had a nice 6 inches of snowfall this year. This rare for my neck of the  woods and gave me a perfect chance to hit the track and see how the Bighorns  perform in the snow.</p>


To my astonishment I was  pleasantly surprised. The aggressive mud  tires I was accustomed to would dig into the snow. The [url=""]Maxxis[/url] Bighorns on the  other hand allowed the ATV to stay on top of the snow rather than dig down and  in. The end result was that they still provided plenty of traction in snowy  conditions.</p>

The next test was in a section  of wet rocks where the last encounter with different set of tires was nearly  disastrous. The [url=""]Maxxis[/url] Bighorns gripped  right onto them and crawled up the hill without a single hitch. Once again, I was astonished at the amount of grip  these tires provided</p>


The next test left me a bit  disappointed. The test was on a slow,  off camber, hillside. Four days of rain  had managed to saturate the ground and cause the topsoil to become extremely  loose. We were crawling at very slow  speeds which prevented the tires from cleaning themselves out. This caused a problem as I was beginning to  lose traction on this steep hillside. The ATV began sliding sideways down the  hill in the mud and it took a bit more throttle than I was comfortable giving  to save me. This was the only problem I encountered with these tires. It’s really tough to find fault in these  tires and much easier to find fault in the rider during those situations. </p>
			<h2>Maxxis Bighorn Qualities</h2>


One major consideration in choosing  the [url=""]Maxxis[/url] Bighorn tires originally was wear.  I had read many comments stating they “wear like iron” and are as “tough  as nails” all over the web. As of the writing  of this review, I can honestly say that there is a negligible amount of wear on  them after 700 miles. We will definitely  revisit this review after a few thousand miles of [b][i]Torture [/i][/b]and keep you  folks updated. [url="javascript:;"][IMG][/IMG][/url]</p>


The [url=""]Maxxis[/url] Bighorn tire seemed  to really suite my needs for my overall type of riding conditions. The radial  design truly provided additional strength as well as sidewall protection. They  handle 95% of all trail conditions with ease making short work of whatever you  throw in front of them. If you are planning on upgrading the tires on your ATV  take a long, hard look at the [url=""]Maxxis[/url] Bighorns. </p>


			<ul type="disc">

              [*]Extremely Durable and long wearing
			  [*]Attention to detail in areas like the “balancing       dot”
			  [*]Exceptional multi-purpose tread design that handles       most situations with ease
			  [*]Radial design provides exceptional ride and       handling characteristics
			  [*]Exceptional performance on dimensional trail       objects like logs and large rocks


			<ul type="disc">
              [*]The added durability caused additional weight
			  [*]Tread design will “gum” up with mud in the slow       and technical areas
			  [*]Tire companies may no longer like you



[b]Maxxis International - USA[/b]

			  545 Old Peachtree Road

			  Suwanee, GA 30024


			  Tel: (800) 4.MAXXIS

			  Tel: (770) 962-5932

			  Fax: (770) 962-7705

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1 - 2 of 9 Posts
Has anyone been able to poke a hole in these things? I've never heard of anyone having a flat. That's amazing.
Koko said:
I have, but that doesn't stop my love for these tires! My friend sliced the carcass of the tire in between treads on a mangled metal culvert in the trail. The sidewall was stiff enough to ride home on! He only had about a 1000miles and could not believe how little tire wear there was when comparing the 3 old ones to the 1 new one.
Wow! This is honestly the first I've heard of any issues with the tire. I think I would have done better to not have asked. lol
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