Author Topic: Is there a benefit to running a wider front tire than rear?  (Read 866 times)

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Offline iab2hieY

Is there a benefit to running a wider front tire than rear?
« on: November 16, 2020, 11:12:45 am »
Hi - I have a gravel bike that has about 60mm of spacing in the fork, so I am thinking I can safely use a 700x50c wire.  The manufacturer only advises a max of 32mm - I currently have a 38mm, but if the wheel goes out of true, it'd be game over, so I would likely switch down to a 32mm.

With a larger front tire (and since my bike has no suspension at all), it'd help to give me more cushioning and traction on gravel.  I can also handle ruts and potholes a little better.  I have a "standard" road bike rim, would I need a wider rim for that wide of a tire?  It would also make sense to have a wider rim as I'd have more air making for a more comfortable ride too, right?

Since the rear tire is still skinny, I would have problems going up loose gravel, but coming down should be much improved since, right?


Thanks,

Walter

Offline John Nettles

Re: Is there a benefit to running a wider front tire than rear?
« Reply #1 on: November 16, 2020, 01:01:37 pm »
The sole benefit would be as you say more cushion on bumps and gravel and better traction (assuming not a smooth tire for gravel).  Yes, you very well may need a wider rim.  I would check out Peter White Cycles or go to BikeForums.net and ask the Mechanics subforum to answer the rim width question.

If you plan on doing a lot of gravel loaded touring, you might start to consider buying a true adventure bike as they are great for off-road touring, many of which accept shocks.

Tailwinds, John