Author Topic: Tire recommendations  (Read 3875 times)

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Offline douglaslee

Tire recommendations
« on: March 11, 2012, 04:45:34 pm »
I'll be riding the TransAm route this summer on a Surly LHT with 26" wheels. My first LONG tour. I'm looking for tire recommendations? I'll be putting on new rubber before I leave. I'm currently riding on Schwalbe Marathon Plus in 26 x 1.75 size. Is this a good tire for a long tour? They seem very heavy, but I love the flat protection.

Thank you for any tips.

Online John Nelson

Re: Tire recommendations
« Reply #1 on: March 11, 2012, 10:02:21 pm »
Although many other tires would also do, you cannot go wrong with one of the tires in the Schwalbe Marathon line. Yes, the Marathon Plus is heavy--too heavy for some and not too heavy for others. You can save considerable weight if you give up slightly on flat protection. Other tires in the Marathon line such as the Dureme, Mondial and Supreme are lighter and almost as flat resistant.

The only tire in the Marathon line that I would shy away from, if your budget allows it, is the tire referred to as simply the Marathon. This tire is much less expensive than all the other tires in the Marathon line and is less reliable. Read the descriptions that Schwalbe provides and choose a tire suitable for your needs. You won't need an off-road tire for the TransAm, even though you may find occasional need to go off road (e.g., to a campground).

Joe B

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Re: Tire recommendations
« Reply #2 on: March 11, 2012, 10:32:34 pm »
IMHO, I would not even bother to get new tires before you leave. My trust in these is that high. I would only change them if the tread depth is insufficient to properly channel water out to prevent aquaplaning.

Offline PeteJack

Re: Tire recommendations
« Reply #3 on: March 11, 2012, 11:31:36 pm »
Quote
if the tread depth is insufficient to properly channel water out to prevent aquaplaning.
According to Sheldon bike tires cannot aquaplane even with no tread at all. What sometimes brings people down on wet roads is oil and grease being brought to the surface by the rain. This may have been mistaken for aquaplaning in heavy rain. Tread is no help on an oily surface any more than it is if you don't take a RR track at 90 degrees. In fact tread only appears to be of any use if the surface is softer than the tire i.e. on mud. So I wouldn't worry about tread depth.

Offline DaveB

Re: Tire recommendations
« Reply #4 on: March 12, 2012, 10:38:49 am »
Quote
if the tread depth is insufficient to properly channel water out to prevent aquaplaning.
According to Sheldon bike tires cannot aquaplane even with no tread at all. What sometimes brings people down on wet roads is oil and grease being brought to the surface by the rain. This may have been mistaken for aquaplaning in heavy rain. Tread is no help on an oily surface any more than it is if you don't take a RR track at 90 degrees. In fact tread only appears to be of any use if the surface is softer than the tire i.e. on mud. So I wouldn't worry about tread depth.
Thank you and +1.  You saved me from some typing.

Offline Pat Lamb

Re: Tire recommendations
« Reply #5 on: March 12, 2012, 10:58:44 am »
IMHO, I would not even bother to get new tires before you leave. My trust in these is that high.

Fully agree on this point.

Question for those who have toured with 26" tires; are reasonably non-knobby replacement tires readily available?  I know good 700C tires over 28 width aren't always available.  Wonder if it would be worth carrying a spare, or having a reliable person keep one to mail quickly, if/when one wears out on tour.

Offline douglaslee

Re: Tire recommendations
« Reply #6 on: March 12, 2012, 11:43:17 am »
IMHO, I would not even bother to get new tires before you leave. My trust in these is that high. I would only change them if the tread depth is insufficient to properly channel water out to prevent aquaplaning.

Sorry I didn't make it clear why I wanted to replace my current Schwalbes. They have 5,000 plus miles on them. I ride a lot of miles. They still appear to have a few more thousand miles in them, but thought it'd be best to start with fresh tires.

Thanks for all the comments. I'll definitely go with Schwables. Just  have to decide which model.

Offline PeteJack

Re: Tire recommendations
« Reply #7 on: March 12, 2012, 12:06:00 pm »
Quote
I know good 700C tires over 28 width aren't always available.
Panasonic RiBMo tires come in 700 X 32 at least, I've had good luck with them but I wouldn't expect more than 5000 out of them. They grip really well.
« Last Edit: March 12, 2012, 12:09:15 pm by PeteJack »

Offline jrswenberger

Re: Tire recommendations
« Reply #8 on: March 12, 2012, 12:23:05 pm »
Douglas,
If you decide to start with fresh rubber...I've been test riding the 26x2.0 Schwalbe Supremes for the past couple of weeks on my new LHT. Although they feel a bit heavy on my daily commute, the weight isn't really too bad, give me a ton of confidence in their handling and I'm sure they're flat resistant enough (none so far!).

Since they are fairly big, I'd actually recommend the 26x1.6 size if you don't plan on riding loaded on gravel or dirt roads at least 50% of the time. Unless my opinion changes dramatically, I'll be putting the 1.6 Supremes on both mine and my wife's LHTs before our upcoming tour.

Jay
ACA Life Member 368

Online John Nelson

Re: Tire recommendations
« Reply #9 on: March 12, 2012, 03:47:31 pm »
If I believe that my current tires have enough miles on them to last the trip, I carry no spare. If I don't think they'll make it, I carry one spare and have someone send me an additional tire as soon as I use the first spare. My Schwalbe Marathon XR (no longer made) have easily lasted me almost 6000 miles, and I expect to start, but not finish, my next long tour on them.

Offline adventurepdx

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Re: Tire recommendations
« Reply #10 on: March 13, 2012, 12:24:33 am »
The only tire in the Marathon line that I would shy away from, if your budget allows it, is the tire referred to as simply the Marathon. This tire is much less expensive than all the other tires in the Marathon line and is less reliable.

I had the plain ol' Marathons (700x35C) for my 4,000 mile tour this summer, and they did fine. I did get a few flats but not many. The rear was starting to wear out towards the end, and I replaced it when I got home. The front tire is still holding up.

Offline RussSeaton

Re: Tire recommendations
« Reply #11 on: March 13, 2012, 01:33:36 am »
If I believe that my current tires have enough miles on them to last the trip, I carry no spare. If I don't think they'll make it, I carry one spare and have someone send me an additional tire as soon as I use the first spare.

Makes no sense.  A spare tire is carried for emergencies.  Not normal replacement of a worn out tire.  In the US, Europe, parts of Asia, parts of South America, you will frequently come across bike shops on a tour.  If a tire is wearing out, you buy a new tire before its 100% worn out when you come across a bike shop.  Spare tires that are carried are used when the sidewall gets damaged from a rock or piece of glass.  Or the tread gets a large cut in it.  Or the bead just refuses to stay on the rim anymore.  I had this happen on a tour once.  Tire blew off a couple times and the bead would no longer stay on the clincher rim.  Also not sure why you would monkey around with the hassle of having a spare tire shipped to you when you use the one you are carrying.  Wouldn't it be a whole lot easier to just buy a new spare the next time you run across a bike shop.  Next day probably?

Offline PeteJack

Re: Tire recommendations
« Reply #12 on: March 13, 2012, 09:37:55 am »
Quote
Makes no sense.  A spare tire is carried for emergencies.  Not normal replacement of a worn out tire.
Err quite. Myself I've given up carrying a spare: they take up a lot of room, even a Kevlar bead folder. Instead I carry Park Tool patches in the hopes a patch will get me to a place I can buy a tire should I get a gash in a one, like I did yesterday on a day ride. Mind you I don't think patches would be much use if a tire won't stay on a rim (a new on on me). Suppose I'll cross that bridge when I come to it. If I'd not been lazy and replaced the paper thin worn tire I wouldn't have needed the patch. Ah well no fool like an old fool.

And this old fool never starts a tour without new tires fore and aft.
« Last Edit: March 13, 2012, 09:42:58 am by PeteJack »

Offline cgarch

Re: Tire recommendations
« Reply #13 on: March 13, 2012, 04:09:36 pm »
Quote
Makes no sense.  A spare tire is carried for emergencies.  Not normal replacement of a worn out tire.
Err quite. <snip>
And this old fool never starts a tour without new tires fore and aft.

I've bought a new tire enroute and worn it out before getting to the destination. In the towns I went through, sure there might have been bike shops but I couldn't count on them having the tire I needed (based on experience looking for tires in shops). Getting one delivered the next day similarly wasn't a likely scenario. So I carry a spare I trust - cheap insurance. This old fool starts with new tires and carries a spare.

Online John Nelson

Re: Tire recommendations
« Reply #14 on: March 14, 2012, 09:59:29 am »
While I agree that you typically have advance warning of a tire wearing out, an old tire is more likely to fail than a new one (after the infant mortality period). Furthermore, as cgarch pointed out, getting an appropriate touring tire at the next small-town bike shop you get to is unlikely. There are many CGOAB journals of people buying the best tire they could find in Podunkville, and having it fail soon thereafter. Even on the well-traveled TransAm, you can go 10 days without encountering a bike shop.