Author Topic: The more expensive tires are the least expensive.  (Read 1186 times)

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Offline Westinghouse

The more expensive tires are the least expensive.
« on: December 09, 2021, 08:38:06 am »
Paying seven or eight dollars for a tire on a bicycle might seem like a good deal. I used to pay that. Then I would take off from Florida to California fully loaded and camping. If the tires are readily available along the way you might end up using four or five on the back and three on the front. Not only that you could have 40 or 50 punctures along the way. That was my experience. Then I started using Schwalbe marathon tires. One set went all the way across from Southeast coastal Florida To San Diego or Los Angeles. I had eight punctures total. The marathon tires cost a little bit more upfront but the saving in time fixing punctures and stopping to buy new tires is more than worth it. Add to that the carefree worry free cycling on good tires and the more expensive tires are the least expensive.
« Last Edit: December 09, 2021, 08:40:46 am by Westinghouse »

Offline John Nettles

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Re: The more expensive tires are the least expensive.
« Reply #1 on: December 09, 2021, 08:53:16 am »
I agree that quality will usually save you money over quantity.  I use Schwalbe's Marathon Supreme tires on fully paved tours and Schwalbe's Mondial tires on mixed road surfaces. I usually average less than 1 flat per 2,000 miles assuming I don't ride much Interstate and their associated truck tire wires that come from flattened truck tires.

Note that Westinghouse referenced "Marathon" tires.  There are several Marathon lines, i.e. think of Ford Motor Company with its Mustang, F-150, Bronco, Focus, etc.  Each has a different purpose (and cost).  Check out Schwalbe's website to figure which tire is best for your needs.

There are other good tires out there but stay away from the Walmart crap unless you are stranded.

Offline HikeBikeCook

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Re: The more expensive tires are the least expensive.
« Reply #2 on: December 09, 2021, 08:55:17 am »
Unfortunately Schwalbe does not make that tire in a 26" (I ride 26 to match my wife) and tubeless - the new trend in tire ride and reliability. I am going cross-country on Surly Extraterrestrials, which I run now and have had good luck with. About $50 each.
Surly Disc Trucker, Lightspeed Classic, Scott Scale, Klein Mantra Comp. First touring bike Peugeot U08 - 1966

Offline John Nettles

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Re: The more expensive tires are the least expensive.
« Reply #3 on: December 09, 2021, 08:57:41 am »
Unfortunately Schwalbe does not make that tire in a 26" ... and tubeless.
Which tire?

Offline HikeBikeCook

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Re: The more expensive tires are the least expensive.
« Reply #4 on: December 09, 2021, 09:04:01 am »
No Marathon Supreme or Plus in 26" Tubeless that I could find
Surly Disc Trucker, Lightspeed Classic, Scott Scale, Klein Mantra Comp. First touring bike Peugeot U08 - 1966

Offline John Nettles

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Re: The more expensive tires are the least expensive.
« Reply #5 on: December 09, 2021, 09:09:00 am »
Interesting. I thought they had a lot of tubeless but I now see they seem to have cut back.  Granted, I have not been a huge fan of tubeless (too scared to be left stranded or having to deal with a major goo mess) so didn't keep up to date on them but I am surprised more are not available.

Glad you found a tire that works for you.

Offline HikeBikeCook

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Re: The more expensive tires are the least expensive.
« Reply #6 on: December 09, 2021, 09:12:31 am »
I just took the plunge after reading countless positive reports. I may regret it and have to add tubes, but I was building new wheels with a dynamo hub for my trip and decided it was now or never.
Surly Disc Trucker, Lightspeed Classic, Scott Scale, Klein Mantra Comp. First touring bike Peugeot U08 - 1966

Offline John Nettles

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Re: The more expensive tires are the least expensive.
« Reply #7 on: December 09, 2021, 09:28:49 am »
We would never advance if someone didn't take risks.  I do envy the supposed sew-up feel of tubeless.  I haven't ridden sew-up since the '70s but oh, they were so so sweet.  Expensive and a pain to repair but sweet.

Offline staehpj1

Re: The more expensive tires are the least expensive.
« Reply #8 on: December 09, 2021, 09:43:06 am »
(too scared to be left stranded or having to deal with a major goo mess)
At one time I had the same concerns.  Since then my experience with tubeless has removed both of thse concerns completely for me.  I wouldn't hesitate to set up a touring bike for tubeless at all, especially if I ran wider tires.

I have not toured on tubeless, but I do run a Stans No Tubes tubeless setup on my mountain bike though and all the worries of a sticky mess are WAY over blown.  The sealant just isn't very messy.  It is easy to manage to not get it all over and washes right off with water.  Even without much water just wiping off with a damp rag until you get to more water isn't that bad.  As far as getting stranded, the setup has been completely reliable I went from weekly thorn flats to zero flats ever in my local trail riding.  That said carrying a tube just in case should make the setup as reliable as any regular tubed setup.

Not all sealants are equal though. I did try slime tubes on tour once in the distant past and they were a disaster.

Offline HikeBikeCook

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Re: The more expensive tires are the least expensive.
« Reply #9 on: December 09, 2021, 09:43:39 am »
Bike trip in Maine 1972 (maybe 73) running sew ups. Memorial Day Weekend and light snow - 5 flats Lewiston-Auburn, ME - all blow-outs same position in tire. Hutchinson tires - must have been a defective batch. Had to hitch hike to Portland to buy new ones. Only shop open that had them. Talked a Boy Scout troop leader with a Pinto Wagon at a gas station into taking us.
Surly Disc Trucker, Lightspeed Classic, Scott Scale, Klein Mantra Comp. First touring bike Peugeot U08 - 1966

Offline HikeBikeCook

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Re: The more expensive tires are the least expensive.
« Reply #10 on: December 09, 2021, 09:46:43 am »
At one time I had the same concerns.  Since then my experience with tubeless has removed both of these concerns completely for me.  I wouldn't hesitate to set up a touring bike for tubeless at all, especially if I ran wider tires.

Running Velocity Cliffhanger Rims, Surly 26 x 1.75 Tires, and Stan's.
Surly Disc Trucker, Lightspeed Classic, Scott Scale, Klein Mantra Comp. First touring bike Peugeot U08 - 1966

Offline BikeliciousBabe

Re: The more expensive tires are the least expensive.
« Reply #11 on: December 09, 2021, 01:28:06 pm »

I have not toured on tubeless, but I do run a Stans No Tubes tubeless setup on my mountain bike though and all the worries of a sticky mess are WAY over blown.  The sealant just isn't very messy.  It is easy to manage to not get it all over and washes right off with water. 
As a road tubeless rider, I agree about the lack of mess. Sealants like Stans are water soluble.  Totally different than slime.

Offline BikeliciousBabe

Re: The more expensive tires are the least expensive.
« Reply #12 on: December 09, 2021, 01:33:37 pm »
One member of our cross country group was, as another rider put it, "Scotch."  Refused to spend money on good tires. Wouldn't surprise me to learn that he flatted twice/week, if not more.  I got 3 the entire 6,000 mile of my journey that summer.  One of those was caused by a large, sharp screw that probably would have gone through any tire in existence at the time.
« Last Edit: December 10, 2021, 09:19:52 am by BikeliciousBabe »

Offline staehpj1

Re: The more expensive tires are the least expensive.
« Reply #13 on: December 09, 2021, 02:22:18 pm »
Oh, by the way the original topic...  No need to waste money on real cheap tires.  There may be some bargains, but for the most part it is best to spend a bit more and get good tires.

Offline John Nelson

Re: The more expensive tires are the least expensive.
« Reply #14 on: December 09, 2021, 08:19:20 pm »
I get twice as many miles and one tenth the number of flats out of tires that cost twice as much. And I don't want to waste time in Gaastra, Michigan looking around to see if I can find suitable replacement tires, which you won't be able to.