New BLCK DMND construction aimed at hard trail and enduro riders

Specialized launch new ‘Downhill Tough, Trail Tyre Supple’ tyres dubbed Specialized BLCK DMND. They’ve also updated some of their XC tyres.

Specialized BLCK DMND tyres need to know

  • Butcher: 27.5 x 2.3, 2.6, 2.8″. 29 x 2.3, 2.6″.
  • Approximate weights 1120g -1300g dependent on size.
  • Hillbilly: 27.5 x 2.3, 2.6″. 29 x 2.3, 2.6″
  • Approximate weights 1150g – 1300g dependent on size.
  • Prices: 2.3″ £50. 2.6″ and 2.8″ £55

Expect the new BLCK DMND tyres to be available by August.

When your downhill tyres are too heavy for enduro riders but your most protective trail tyre isn’t tough enough, what do you do?

If you’re Specialized then you develop an entirely new construction process and compound to create the perfect ‘in-betweeny’ tyre. This new BLCK DMND version is being rolled out over two of Specialized’s most popular DH/trail tyres, the Butcher all-rounder and the wet-weather specialist Hillbilly. The way Specialized see it riders are demanding the supple ride characteristics of a trail tyre but coupled to the durability and sidewall support only a heavy DH tyre can bring.

The best mountain bike tyres for 2018

Superficially the new tyres look no different from existing versions as the new BLCK DMND tyres stick to the same tread pattern. It’s under the surface that all the changes are made. The construction utilises something Specialized call its Flip-up Ply. Effectively a single carcass ply is folded up at the tyre bead to double the thickness of the sidewalls but leaving the crown open to keep the ride as supple as possible. It also has extra layers of rubber at the sidewall to reduce the chances of pinch flats and to protect the rim.

specialized BLCK DMND

Looking at the construction you can see the Flip-Up ply and extra rubber at the sidewalls.

Read: Specialized Butcher Grid 2.6″ review

In terms of changes to the compound, Specialized has slowed the rebound rate in comparison to the existing versions to keep the tyre gripping the ground no matter the speeds.


Read: Specialized Hillbilly Grid review

Updated Specialized Renegade and Specialized Fast Track XC tyres

As well as the new big rubber, Specialized also announced the updated versions of some of their fastest cross country rubber. Long standing fan favourites Renegade and Fast Trak tyres have had a little tweak from the rubber fairies.

These new options are lighter weight and run a slightly different tread pattern to previous models. Each model features a new 120TPI casing, using a much lighter weight thread, resulting in a lighter and more supple tyre overall. The tread pattern has been adjusted slightly and is spread wider apart than before, therefore reducing the number of knobs needed and reducing weight.

Both are available in a single, 29er only diameter but in two different width options; 2.1″ and 2.3″. Like the BLCK DMND tyres, they should be available in August.