Duro leopard vs surly knard

Yeah, same here, first day on it! Noticed immediate difference. It just simply rode better! AND, this is coming from a guy who loves his Duro!
Pure pleasure, was today’s loose gravel and hill ride on the Bay Trail.
Significantly lighter>>
translates to a faster, smoother cadence, (and a big plus) which equates to less back pedal pressure for rapid corrections>> which translates to less effort, less fatigue, more achievable distance, and ultimately greater efficiency.

Softer, supple, grippier.
Bouncier, hops better with less effort.
Rounder profile, with much smaller, tighter knobs equals less roll resistence.
I rode on really loose gravel , and due to the sufficiently wide 3" I didnt notice any significant lost of traction as compared to the knobby Duro, thats because on non super technical rocky stuff, the Duro maybe an overkill. Unis’ in general, have really good traction and control, so in my opinion, in most cases we dont need as big knobs as we think, on 97% of the stuff.


Only a couple I can think of as of today’s experience.
I lowered my pressure from 20psi (midfirm) to probably 15_17psi? (soft), definitely bottomed out when I hit a large bump or a dip. Im probably sure it folds over easier at a lower psi too, than the much stiffer no fold Duro. But thats ok, just dont lower it that low.

Due to its supple, grippy nature, Im sure it wont wear as well as the Duro.

Overall, an awesome new 26x3 120tpi tire! I definitely climbed better too, due to its nimbleness and the ability to make corrections fast to be out of the deadzone. Cant wait to try it on the really steep hills.
Loving it already. And when I wear it out bald, then that means I have that much further advanced in skills and will purchase another.

Ok, Im totally convinced on lighter tires, higher TPI’s from now on. :smiley:

Hi there

Silly question probably: I’ve got a Quax Muni 26’ (the steel frame one - bought it around 2 years ago if that helps to know wich model I’m referring to) with a 26x2.5 tyre at the moment which for the time being I’m happy with but wouldn’t mind to try that Surly knard 3’ (or any other 3’ for that matter) at some point. Does any of you knows if a 26 x 3’ (The Duro or the Knard) would fit in the Quax frame? :thinking:


That’s a good question the product page from 2013 doesn’t answer :confused:

However, Measuring your frame (leg length and crown width) can help you guess if a Duro would fit (either by comparing with other frames know to host a Duro or by retrieving the tire width and height from somebody with a Duro).

From there, you have 3 cases:

B You frame doesn’t fit a Duro[/B]: you are out of luck and will have to stick with a 2.5 or 2.7 tire.

B You frame fits a Duro (tight fit)[/B]: that is the most common case. That means you cannot run a Surly Knard (too big) but you can give a try to the Surly Dirt Wizard (reported with the same volume as a Duro)

B You frame fits a Duro (wide marging)[/B]: this is the less likely case except if Qu-ax is making an insanely wide frame. However, that means the Surly Knard can fit.

According to the pic, it seems that the 2.5 tire has a good clearance on top so there is a chance a Duro can fit. If you don’t know somebody with a Duro, let us know so someone here can take measurement for you (or the search feature can find that in the old threads).

Re the 26x2.75 Dirt Wizard: this is a great tire but personally I’d classify it more as a high volume “normal” tire than a mid-fat 26+ tire. It has almost identical dimensions and feel to a Maxxis High Roller 26x2.7" tire (e.g. the tire that came with the 2014 KH26). As such it is lower volume than the Duro, which in turn is lower volume than the Knard.

I had another awesome ride today. Loved it on the steep stuff. Yeah, I can definitely climb better and longer as compared to the heavy Duro. Definitely easier to ‘throw around’ . Down hills, easier to gain control in around the rock gardens, which makes it less scary.

I could put much more torque and throw into the wheel that I felt on couple of occasions felt the tire slide or slip a little(“peel out”) , but not enough for me to lose balance. I guess I was still used to the heavier pressures needed for the Duro. Im sure with less knobby there’s lesser of a ‘bite’ into the really loose stuff. But Im sure with more experience on the Knard with being lighter footed, sorta quickly skimming through the loose stuff, i can make up the difference.

I believe Kh lineup did right by choosing the Knard on the 26"/29".
Simply Lovin it!

Thanks a lot for the detailed answer and the ‘Internet Archive’ link. Good stuff. Will follow your suggestions of measuremetns and comparing it to other frames etc… Thanks again :slight_smile:

24inch owners are getting some bad envy

At least the 24" Duro is a tad lighter. And the smaller wheel makes it maneuverable.
Having said that, will Surly come up with a 24" version of the Knard? :smiley:

That would be awesome! What about asking as a community? I don’t really know how to explain it in english, but if they receive lots of orders, they may consider a small production. Is it such a stupid idea?

Yes it is. 24" is practically dead in the bike industry, sad as that may be.

Besides, imo the duro is still an excellent tire. After feeling a 120 tpi knard, I wouldn’t use it for muni. 27 tpi is much better.

The sidewalls do seem very thin, but it’s handling the not so jagged rocky stuff in my area just fine. My riding appeals more to of climbing steep and riding down so the knard fits me better. Forgive me for such a change of heart, Im in total honeymoon with its significant weight loss and efficiency gain.:smiley:

At my mediocre level, I did really appreciated the confidence boosting (yeah, in that sense the Duro is super tough and handles the roughest terrain) , and also, a tremendous leg workout, no doubt.:stuck_out_tongue: Now Ive only submitted and becoming a weight weenie.

Now time for me to find a lighter 36er tire to:p play with!

Dude stop touching my Knard :smiley:

Well I have quickly found the goldy locks zone. My trials is great just farting around in one little area but to much work and pedal strikes through the rocks. My Oregon is just to heavy for what I like to do in the summer great for snow covered trails. My nimbus 24 seems to be just right for those techy dh switch back trails with a lot of hop down rock gardens. Not to change the post but I think no knard on my 26 this yr.

Oregon got Knard


Little dot is my Oregon up there. Ive been tackling this hill for quite some time trying to ride down it without a UPD. The Duro just required too much back pedal pressure to remain balanced. Woohoo! Did it on my Knard. With 'S’s and also straight down it.

It really is good practice on this soft stuff, just in case of a nasty UPD.:wink: I just have to really watch out for rolling my ankle on the gopher holes, though. My new 510 Carvers seems to have the right grip and ankle support.


That looks great. I get the ankle thing. I now use ankle supports when I ride. They help a ton on not twisting or tweaking your ankle or foot.

Hi Caps, I got your message. Yes, I love the Knard more than ever now. Though, im not sure if its the case that my skills have improved so much since my hill riding with the Duro. Whatever it is, I know I am definitely better on it, again, maybe saddle time is a great contributor.
Sadly to announce, yesterday was my last day flying down that hill. Darn, whys all nice things have to end so soon. Apprearantly, an empoyee noticed me coming down that hill too many times and had stopped me. In the nicest tone of voice, he respectfully told me that hillsides are not to be ridden on. Because of errosion, nesting endangered ground owls, and potential rebars sticking out of the ground from previous staked sprinklers. Darn, he was so nice to me that I had no choice but to give him my words and stay only on trails. Yeah, I do see trails made by bikes that do premenently compact the soil, so with all repect, I will stay off the hillsides. Darn it though, it was blast when I was finally getting really good at it.

I ran the PSI at 18 or 19 which is plenty firm.
Got it at Modernbike.com
I have four 26" , highroller, Nate, maxxis beaver, and this one is my favorite by far, mainly because of the width and weight. Though, i couldnt really comment on the Nate becuase i had maybe only 3hrs of ride on it.

I have now tested both the Duro 26x3 and the Knard 26x3 on my Oracle (I’m guessing aprox. 5 hours on each tyre). With the Knard I also used a Foss tube.

The most noticable difference besides the weight is the stability. The Knard is excelent on even surfaces, but for muni it is challenging. I had trouble keeping my balance, and in my opinion this is not a tyre for beginners. It felt slightly better with higher airpressure. The Duro on the other hand is very stable and easy to ride, but the weight makes me tired and I can bearly get it off the ground when I try to hop (I am not very good at hopping).

I only ride in dry weather, but with mud holes everywhere the tyre is often constantly wet. In these conditions the Duro has much better grip on rock, because of the softer rubber. When riding through the mudholes, the Duro is also much better.

The best thing about the Knard is how easy it rolls over sections with lots of large roots. Compared to the Duro you can bearly feel them at all. The light weight and bouncyness of the Knard makes it fun to ride, but it is also difficult.

I think I will go back to the Duro for now.

This video shows the terrain I am riding (with the Duro): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uOnKks7o9tE

Yeah, the Duro is an excellent Muni tyre that’s really easy to handle. The only downsides (for me) are weight, rolling resistance and inert reaction to bumps.
Which tube did you use for the Duro? The original 400g monster it comes with on most unicycles?
I’d recomment you to use your Duro tubeless. This compensates the negative issues you experienced with it. I’ve been riding this setup for 2 years now. It’s absolutely great. It minimized the negative issues of the Duro without any negative effect.


I’ll stick with the Foss tube for now. I have never ridden tubless before.

The major strength of the Knard is that it is lightweight for climbing yet has lots of volume to absorb shock and enable better rolling over uneven terrain. For such a large volume tire it is quite good at cornering, although not as good as some lower volume tires. These strengths are huge in that they describe the kind of terrain that many riders worldwide ride on average, much of the time. Hence why I spec’d it as standard on the 2015 KH26.

In my experience the Knard excels in dry conditions and is OK in wet terrain (wet rock, wet roots) as long as it is not muddy. The rubber compound is really grippy - personally I would not say that the Knard is at a disadvantage to the Duro here except that the squarer profile of the Duro may help you stick on edges on sidehills, or when riding along logs. But at the expense of cornering performance. The Gazzolodi was even better than the Duro in that regard although it’s long discontinued.

It doesn’t work well in clayey mud - the shallow tread combined with a round profile is not grippy. The Duro definitely wins on that account.

Ultimately we have to accept that one tire is just not going to be perfect in every condition given that some features that cause a tire to excel in one condition can directly contradict those that make it excel in another. Personally I’m willing to compromise on the Knard’s lack of performance in mud given it’s strengths in other areas, but that will depend on the rider.