Schwalbe Fat Albert Evo Snakeskin tyre review£50.00

All-weather trail rubber

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The Fat Albert is Schwalbe's all-round, all-weather trail tyre but the gobsmacking price isn’t relected in its performance.

Schwalbe’s race-developed Evolution carcass and compound technology keep it relatively light for its size. It features a dual compound tread rubber mix over a harder base compound, and the crosshatched ‘snakeskin’ sidewalls make it a lot less vulnerable to cuts and splits too.

The mix of split bar and angled centre lugs are spaced wide for clearing but are low enough not to cripple speed. Twin sipe-topped angled side knobs handle lean grip.

Despite all this technology and a long time persevering with it, the Fat Albert never proved particularly confident or impressive on the trail.

It tends to skate and slip over rocks and roots rather than moulding to them, and the side knobs squirm and distort when cornering. The outer knob surfaces tear up fast too, making the £50 pricetag seem pretty outrageous.

Guy Kesteven

Freelance Writer, UK
Guy started filling his brain with cycle stats and steaming up bike shop windows back in 1980. He worked the other side of those windows from '89 while getting a degree in “describing broken things covered in mud" (archaeology). Dug historical holes in the ground through the early '90s, then became a pro bike tester in '97. Guy has ridden thousands of bikes and even more components the world over since then and can remember them all in vivid, haunting detail. Can't remember where the car keys are, though.
  • Age: 44
  • Height: 180cm / 5' 11"
  • Weight: 68kg / 150lb
  • Waist: 76cm / 30in
  • Chest: 91cm / 36in
  • Discipline: Strict sadomasochist
  • Preferred Terrain: Technical off-piste singletrack and twisted back roads. Up, down, along — so long as it's faster tfhan the last time he did it he's happy.
  • Current Bikes: An ever changing herd of test machines from Tri bikes to fat bikes and everything in between.
  • Dream Bike: His Nicolai Helius AM custom tandem
  • Beer of Choice: Theakston's Old Peculier (not Peculiar)
  • Location: Yorkshire, UK

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