Published on December 9th, 2011 | by Joe0
GBC Bomb Squad MX Tire Test
Testing GBC’s Tough Tunable Motocross Tires.
Today, premiere motocross tires are relying more and more on super soft, rubber compounds with widely spaced knobs, in order to provide optimum traction in all conditions. While these tires work well, they also wear extremely quickly, adding to the price of competing. Recently, GBC teamed up with riders from Wes Miller’s famed Bomb Squad team to develop the all-new Bomb Squad Motocross ATV Tire. The Bomb Squad riders are more than just flippers; Caleb Moore raced the ATV Nationals before he captioned the Squad, so he knows when a tire is working well on the track.
The multidirectional rear tires feature rows of Bomb Squad logos facing opposite directions. One way, the tire features three leading edges of knob surface; the other direction offers two. Constructed of a harder rubber compound, the Bomb Squad’s rely on closely spaced knobs with lots of biting edges to provide traction.
The front tire’s tread is made up of a center ridge with H Bomb, bomb-shaped logos, grooved in it. Two outer rows on either side are made up of winged, Bomb Squad-shaped knobs that feature different angles and directions. Four-ply construction should provide a bit more puncture resistance and less sidewall flex than their two-ply competitors, especially at lower pressures.
We have tried these tires on three different occasions, under three very different conditions, to find out what they have to offer. We found their performance to be very air pressure sensitive. Travis Moore, who ran the Bomb Squad tires in the Pro Class at the ATV Nationals in 2011, recommended we run 7 pounds of pressure in the rear tires and 10 pounds in the front. After lowering the pressure to Travis’s recommendations, Dave Trimble felt like he was getting the most out of the tires.
The Bomb Squad tires are most at home in lightly-tilled to hard-packed conditions. If you race a moto or two after they prep the track, you are good to go. Forward traction is good along with predictability in the corners. The rear tires can be driven (or slid through) turns pretty predictably without fear of the back end spinning out. On our highly modified 450R, the four-ply GBCs felt light enough on the track, whether you were maneuvering in the air or accelerating out of a corner.
The closely spaced tread pattern left the tires searching for traction in heavily-tilled conditions, so good gate prep is important. One neat aspect about the Bomb Squad is that they were designed to be grooved, allowing you to remove knobs to open up the tread pattern for improved bite in deep loam or mud.
We ran the rear tires facing both directions in our various testing conditions. We preferred running the tires with two leading edges facing forward and three backward, as they slid more predictably through turns on our clay-based tracks. For sand-based tracks like Glen Helen of Southwick, we suspect that running three leading edges forward would be the hot setup.
The front tires seemed to be a good match for the rear, once you get all four tires pressured correctly. They steered predictably as long as there was available traction. Straight-line tracking and stability were good, and both ends worked well in choppy sections with no bouncing sensation.
GBC Bomb Squad tires are capable of winning races right out of the box, on the right track. If you take the time to groove them, they should be able to win races on most any track. We’d like to test a grooved set on a heavily-tilled track in the future.
After three, long, test sessions, the GBC Bomb Squad tires are still in beautiful condition with virtually no sign of wear. Dave could easily race the entire series at Earlywines Indoor Motocross this winter with one set of tires and be very competitive. Saving money doesn’t mean much if you can’t win. With the Bomb Squad tires, you could, perhaps, enjoy both.
Product: Bomb Squad MX Tires
18X10-8 Rear $88,74
20×6-10 Front $73,63
GBC Bomb Squad MX Tires
Summary: After three, long, test sessions, the GBC Bomb Squad tires are still in beautiful condition with virtually no sign of wear. Dave could easily race the entire series at Earlywines Indoor Motocross this winter with one set of tires and be very competitive. Saving money doesn’t mean much if you can’t win. With the Bomb Squad tires, you could, perhaps, enjoy both.