Review by: Andrew Gracey
Terrene Cake Eater
27.5 x 4.0, 1000+ miles
I ride bikes, a lot, and have for nearly 30 years now.
I have been riding mountain bikes pretty much since the beginning, and in the 1990’s logged a silly number of snowy miles on pair of hex-head screw studded, duct tape lined, 26 x 2.35’s. Yes they were unbelievably heavy and nearly cut through the chainstays of the 1986 rigid aluminum frame they were on. This was a very long time before Fatbikes were ever invented.
So needless to say, over the years I’ve ridden a rolled on a lot of wheelsets, and countless tires. Since switching over to primarily riding and racing Fatbikes, I’ve ridden about every tire that really bears mentioning in 26 and 27.5. Some are good for this or that, some are good for nothing. To be blunt, I don’t often get excited about tires. The Terrrene Cake Eater, in 27.5 x 4.0 has been different though.
When Willo Glynn asked if I’d try these out, toward the middle of the 2018 season, I was a little hesitant. I’d found my fast roller already, had a go-to tire for sloppy courses, knew what I liked on hard-pack groomers, and was getting really close to finding a real digger for low-PSI natural condition courses. But, when Willo asks you to try something...you try it. He is pretty much the Yoda of Fatbikes.
So, after more than 1,000 miles of training and racing, I’ll offer my thoughts on the Terrene’s Cake Eater in 27.5 x 4.0 in the 120 TPI Light offering.
It’s a cinch. End of story. Painless tubeless period. No loss of air, at any point.
Rock solid. Great sidewalls, exceptional puncture resistance, and absolutely no issues of any kind. Further, considering the miles I put on these tires (almost exclusively off road) I have to say that they are demonstrating no more than nominal tread wear. You might think that means they are just a really hard compound, prone to compromised traction, but you’d be mistaken. Keep reading.
Traction and Handling...
I have been very pleasantly surprised that such a fast rolling tire offers so much traction. They are equally at home on hard pack, slick leaf on hardpack, snow on soft ground, snow on frozen ground, and bare frozen ground. They track really nicely, with no more than minimal self-steer tendency, corner on a rail, and if pushed too hard will break loose in a very predicable way only to immediately hook up again when the substantial side knobs engage. Braking is superb. So what about the rocky, roots, or really wet stuff? This tire will absolutely hold its own. Ice? Terrene borrowed from auto snow tire technology and built in ample siping to deliver a very surprising amount of grip for a non-studded tire. All in all...excellent.
Spin-up, Acceleration and Holding Speed...
These tires roll! I love fast rolling tires that spin up quickly and hold speed. I’ve ridden and raced all of the fastest offerings out there, and I am admittedly prone to giving up a little traction or handling if decreased rolling resistance is the pay-off. I was initially hesitant to trial the Cake Eater for that exact reason...it just looked like more tire than I thought I wanted. I was wrong. The Cake Eater offers all the speed of anything out there, with none of the negative trade-offs I would normally expect. It’s as fast as anything else, but offers a lot more traction than any other fast roller I’ve ever ridden.
So to wrap this up...
I like this tire quite a bit. I have been really impressed by it in every way. The industry is full of tires...and that’s a good thing. When companies compete, consumers win. But too many choices can result in paralysis by analysis. Let me try and help you with that. If you are looking for a surprisingly durable fast-roller, with plenty of bite...look no further.
I will be torture testing the same tire in 27.5 x 4.5. Check back soon.
There are many different size offerings of the Cake Eater as well as studded versions that can be seen and purchased by clicking HERE!
Author: Andrew Gracey - Growler Factory Team Rider