What kind of tires to ride?

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What kind of tires to ride?

Postby wayneh » Fri Aug 27, 2010 2:58 pm

With the talk of chip seal on at least the first sections of the ride, I'm debating what kind of tires to use this year, something totally bulletproof or something with puncture protection but that rides a bit better. Also, 23mm vs 25mm width. Anyone know what the roads are like the rest of the route? Any thoughts on tire choices while there's still some time to change my setup?
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Re: What kind of tires to ride?

Postby Force 5 Robert » Fri Aug 27, 2010 5:09 pm

I always err on the side of comfort when on my 2 wheeler. I go 25mm wide there. I will be super wide this year with 2.15 Big Apples. (That's inches)

Oh yeah....... :mrgreen:
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Re: What kind of tires to ride?

Postby Tender Chunks » Fri Aug 27, 2010 9:09 pm

I've used Bontrager Inverts for - like - forever. When we have to ride on gravel, when there are goatheads all around, I just keep on cruising. Haven't had a flat in 5 years.
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Re: What kind of tires to ride?

Postby riding2live » Fri Aug 27, 2010 9:30 pm

TC, youve gone and done a bad thing. You've challenged the gods of misfortune. It's been my experience that once you BRAG something like----"Haven't had a flat in 5 years" that's when you better watch your back, cuz your time's coming brudder. Better put a couple of those fold up spares in your kit bag this year.
Ride like the devil's behind you, becuz he is---and he/she is drivin' a car textin' on the phone.
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Re: What kind of tires to ride?

Postby jdmitch » Sat Aug 28, 2010 4:02 pm

Great question... As a CO newbie (long-time cyclist) it seems most flats on country roads are due to either pinch flats or debris picked up on the shoulder when you stop in the grass or otherwise. I am bringing Continental Grand Prix size 24 (yes it's relatively new). It has a soft tread compound and a double-polly breaker. Comfort and a little extra width - just like me :shock: Seems the best overall compromise for someone not wanting "gator-skins".
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Re: What kind of tires to ride?

Postby Force 5 Robert » Sat Aug 28, 2010 4:38 pm

Of particular importance to me is how easy my tires are to get on and off the rim. I will not run a tire that is near impossible to get on and off the rim while I am sitting in my shop with a cold beer - as that means removing it to fix a flat on a hot or rainy roadside will be like a descent into tire changing hell.

Best bet is to run the most comfortable and durable tire that you can get on and off the rim with only a single lever.
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Re: What kind of tires to ride?

Postby Shifty » Sat Aug 28, 2010 5:49 pm

As usual, I'll be riding Armadillo 23's. I will stick with my winning combination of that tire and Slime tubes. :D
Clip in and let's go!
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Re: What kind of tires to ride?

Postby johnncarol » Sat Aug 28, 2010 8:22 pm

A tandem is very hard on tires and we have tried several, including Gator Skins. I keep coming back to Continental Grand Prix as the best solution. I can't say I haven't had any flats for five years but most of the flats I have had are from glass on the road that I don't see in time to avoid. I run the 700/25 with a hard compund. I actually like the soft compound for the stickiness but for rides like CO, I like the durability of the harder compound. I run the 700/25 because I want a bit more rubber on the road, particularly for the long down hill's. Anyone who rides a tandem can tell you that flats at higher speeds are really scary. I make sure my tires are at least 110 pounds every morning because with the extra weight, pinch flats are a constant concern. I carry two tubes, CO2 cartridges a patch kit and a mini pump. I recently had a tiny tiny thorn that flatted two tubes before I found it by turning the tire inside out. I don't want to be 30 miles out of town with no way to fix a tire. With SAG on CO that is not a problem but I still would rather be safe than sorry.

As far as chip seal is concerned, would it be CO without chip seal? Just ride and be happy. We might have chip seal but we don't have stop signs or lots of traffic. We don't have to be at work or home by a certain time. We don't need to worry about cooking meals or taking care of the kids. We don't see any of the bills and we don't get any political phone calls. Chip seal seems like a small price to pay unless you are a hammerhead worried about the best camping spot.
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Re: What kind of tires to ride?

Postby slv0700 » Sun Aug 29, 2010 1:51 pm

I also use Armadillo's/23's with kevlar.....3 flats in 6 yrs and two were pinch flats. I ride chip seal all year long where I live; what chip seal some times will do is put little cracks in the tires....so I carry small pieces of black plumbing tape and put over the hole before each ride until my tire is worn enough to replace it.
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Re: What kind of tires to ride?

Postby woodenidol » Mon Aug 30, 2010 10:07 am

Im going to ride my Bontrager Hardcases. They have been up to this point, my most reliable commuting tire. I ride 28's. I just seem to get to many pinch flats on 25 or less. I am riding a Cross Check, so going 28 is easy.

No prediction on flats from me. I had ridden about two months to work without a flat on the Hardcases. I was thinking how lucky I was on one morning, sure enough, I had a flat from nail less than five minutes later. The new tubes valve broke on installation. Double wammy. I try hard not to even think about my tires now.

My biggest question now is will it be raining and do I put the fenders on.
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Re: What kind of tires to ride?

Postby Force 5 Robert » Mon Aug 30, 2010 1:13 pm

woodenidol wrote:My biggest question now is will it be raining and do I put the fenders on.


Yikes I had this same thought today.... maybe I should not be having those thoughts either.
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Re: What kind of tires to ride?

Postby Clipinnow » Mon Aug 30, 2010 4:34 pm

slv0700 wrote:I also use Armadillo's/23's with kevlar.....3 flats in 6 yrs and two were pinch flats. I ride chip seal all year long where I live; what chip seal some times will do is put little cracks in the tires....so I carry small pieces of black plumbing tape and put over the hole before each ride until my tire is worn enough to replace it.


I've been riding these since 2002. I've been happy with the results on 8 CO's and year round riding. I've had my share of flats but all in all these perform well.

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Re: What kind of tires to ride?

Postby bfuller24 » Tue Aug 31, 2010 9:52 am

Continental 4000's and Grand Prix's have served me so well in all of my Cycle Oregon's and rough road riding back home that I will ride on nothing else. I often can't help but attention to my Continental's whenever those around me are flatting and I stop to help them with thier tire/tube repair. I can't say I never flat, and I am pretty good at cleaning my tires with my finger after rolling through debris at intersections (which may explain alot) but relative to others, my cycling since discovering Continentals has been largely unimpeded by the "tubular puncturitis" often seen by others.
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Re: What kind of tires to ride?

Postby Chuck B. » Tue Aug 31, 2010 9:58 am

I've read a lot about the Conti Grand Prix 4000S lately, and the reviews were all so favorable that I have a set coming in the mail. They'll be on my Roubaix for CO...
The voices tell the stories. I just record them for posterity.

And the voices have some good ideas sometimes!
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Re: What kind of tires to ride?

Postby Don Bolton » Tue Aug 31, 2010 3:28 pm

I have ridden various tires over the years and did a 9 year stretch with NO flats. I do strange things with tires like check them thoroughly after each stop, pick my lines deliberately when riding (numerous years off road motorcycle racing taught me that one).

AND I run Continental Gatorskins front and rear BUT... I run a 25 rear and um a 28 front...(not all road forks will accommodate a 28) I like the wider footprint for the chipseal and the invariable gravel roads we'll hit for a mile or more somewhere along the route. I run the larger front to create a bit more of a rake angle on the fork relative to normal level to slow handling a tad as my bike has had a speed wobble above 50 and when I can I want and enjoy going that fast.

This helped as last year coming back from CA into the mother state through the mountains I passed my bike mechanic in one of the support vehicles that claimed he slowed to 50 to let me pass him on a more open stretch. Still had a mild wobble but controllable I could just relax and let it roll out.

Headset has been gone through and properly set up since and I may not have this issue this year. This is in the tighter twistier hills where my motorcycle experience lets me fly with a sense of relaxed comfort. People think I'm crazy sigh...

It's not a race (I go that fast cause I can and love to) so the energy consumed by the wider footprint is a minuscule price to pay for better comfort on roads that are not going to be smooth. In fact the extra tire may reduce the drag the bad road surfaces set up on more race oriented rubber.

Don "not crazy just enjoy those motorcycle level speeds when I can" Bolton
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