Schwalbe Hans Dampf Enduro Custom Knob Cut – Part II

Schwalbe Hans Dampf Custom Cut 2

Here is my latest version of the Hans Dampf custom cut for all those enduro racers out there looking for an edge. Note the reduced height on the center knobs.

Some of you may have read my post at back in April about a custom cut I was experimenting with to create a front specific version of the Schwalbe Hans Dampf. While I was happy with the results of that cut, I decided to try it again but with a more aggressive cut to reduce rolling resistance even more. The result came out even better than I had hoped. Rolling efficiency is much better while the resulting loss of braking traction is almost imperceptible. Meanwhile, cornering traction is exactly the same as a stock tire because the cornering knobs aren’t modified.

Schwalbe Hans Dampf Custom Cut1

Here is my original custom cut version on the right next to a stock tire on the left.

In the first version I made my ramp cuts just in front of the sipe on the center knobs. In version two I started the cut just behind the trailing edge of the sipe and cut almost down to the casing on the leading edge of the knob. This really decreased the slope of the ramp on the knob to reduce rolling resistance. I then went a step further and cut 1-2mm off of the top of the remaining flat section of the center knobs.

Schwalbe Hans Dampf Custom Cut2

Here is Cut 2 in all its splendor. The ramp on the knobs is a bit more aggressive compared to version 1. The difference may look subtle, but the improvement in rolling speed out on the trail is obvious.

For the wide spaced center knobs I did a deeper diagonal cut to decrease the slope of the ramp on them as well. The new version cut starts at about 45% of the diagonal width of the knob, whereas the old version started at roughly 30%. On the inner transition knobs I went just a tiny bit deeper on that cut so that these knobs match all the other smaller knobs to ensure a smooth roll.

Of course doing a cut this complex is time consuming. I put in about 45 minutes from start to finish. I can hear the haters now, “Dude you could have been riding 45 minutes longer! Why bro? Why?” To that I respond, ‘You gotta recover some time. Using that time you normally waste in front of the TV to make your tires a bit quicker, is time well spent in my opinion.’ Besides, if you are doing any enduro racing, having a faster rolling tire that gives up almost nothing in the braking department can only help you move up a few spots in the finish results.

Diagonal Cutters

Diagonal cutters are your friend when it comes to finding more speed out on the trail. Just think of the improved grip strength you will have when you are done with your cut!