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"Credit Card" Touring Tire Recommendations?(13 posts)

"Credit Card" Touring Tire Recommendations?MeDotOrg
May 25, 2001 11:50 AM
I'm doing the California Aids ride in June, and I'm still searching for the right tire. I'm looking for something that's relatively comfortable and durable, but with low rolling resistance. We'll be doing about 85 miles a day over a variety of roads, and I don't want to spend a lot of time with my patch kit.

I've been riding Vittoria Open Corsa CXs, but they are way too flat-prone for long-distance riding. The Michelin Axial Kevlars I tried were okay, but had pretty high rolling resistance. I've got a pair of Axial Pros, but I'm concerned that they would pick up road trash like the Vittoria Corsas (I haven't actually used the Axial pros yet). Some people speak highly of Conti GP3000s. I had a GP1000 for a while, and it was extremely tough to change (the bead was so stiff that regular plastic tire irons didn't seem to help much).

So I'm looking for a tire with:

1. Good resistance to road trash – something that isn't going to flat in the first 500 miles.

2. Decent rolling resistance. I realize I have to trade of some rolling resistance for tire life, but something that's a nice compromise.

3. Something supple enough to get off the rim without a pneumatic drill in case it does flat.

They don't have to be heavy-duty touring tires – I'm not going to be carrying a lot of weight.

Specialized Armadillos seems to have a good reputation for being tough, but also heavy, tough riding and (say some) quality control problems. Maybe this is the price you have to pay, but I'm wondering if there is something a little lighter and more supple out there that still has good flat resistance.

Right now I'm thinking about Pasela TGs or even going back to the original Vittoria Actions, which lasted about 1200 miles.

Any other suggestions?
Grab What 'Cha Like, in Kevlarblue bayou
May 25, 2001 12:05 PM
And go from there. I've used the Vit's in kevlar for a few years and have few flats.

I use this trick to limit my exposure to flats--when I ride through a particulary dirty section of the road, intersections, agricultural areas and whatnot, I reach down while rolling and use my glove to scrape off whatever might be there, glass particles, thorns, general road debris, whatever. I started this practice years ago and I feel it has reduced my flat rate considerably.

Clean tires are happy tires.

Good luck and enjoy the ride!
That reminds me...MeDotOrg
May 25, 2001 12:34 PM
My old Fuji Touring bike had little plastic coated wires that were attached to the brakes that formed a little bridge over the tire. The purpose was to knock off any road trash that stuck to the tires. I wonder if anyone still makes those...
Yes....Greg Taylor
May 25, 2001 5:39 PM
..."The Third Hand" used to carry them. Probably still have them.
They're called Tire Savers (nm)Kerry Irons
May 25, 2001 6:14 PM
re: "Credit Card" Touring Tire Recommendations?2cheap
May 25, 2001 1:11 PM
My Axial Pro's looked like they'd been to hell and back after only 500 miles (and several flats) before I scrapped them and installed Continental Ultra Gatorskins. Although a bit heavy, they are extremely tough, have little rolling resistance and are much more comfortable than the Armadillo's I used to have.

I think they're a steal at $31. You can get them and Performance or Excelsports. Blue bayou's recommendation to periodically brush your tire with you (gloved) hand also works to get the garbage off before it embeds itself into your tire.
re: "Credit Card" Touring Tire Recommendations?froze
May 26, 2001 12:48 AM
I have tried most brands and it seems they all have gone towards more comfortable riding tires by making the sidewalls thinner which in turn has been where most of my flats occurred. After trying Mich Axial pro, Vitts kevlars, Cont's 3000 (gatorskins may no longer be being built)& Verd's kevlar and tried tuffys and slime tubes in the the 3000s and had no success. Finally I tried the Spec's Armadillos and so far with 800 miles no problems which is about 300 miles further then the best before. With these I not even using tuffys or the slimes and went with a 50gr tube! I also heard that Rivendell bicycles now sells a tire called the Roly-Poly that a friend of mine tried on his tandem and loves them but their size is 700x28? and they cost alot more than the Armadillos.
RE: Touring Tire Recommendations?mr tornado head
May 27, 2001 9:28 AM
After posting questions about the Perormance Forte' tires, I went ahead and bought a set (on sale for $15 ea thru thier web site!) and must say, I'll buy more. Get the kevlar beaded, kevlar belted set. Rides smoother than my conti 1000's, are a fast tire, and the 700 x 26's I got let me roll thru gravel, tar & chip roads and various road debris without a problem yet. They aren't very heavy either - I believe comprable to the conti gatorskins. It's been posted in this forum that they are made by Panaracer.

Besides, at the price I got them, you could get a third as a spare (what I wish I would have done). Best of luck on your ride.
May 25, 2001 5:15 PM
Where do you guys ride?Ian
May 25, 2001 5:16 PM
I read how everyone is going through Axial Pros / GP 3000's in 500 miles. I used to ride Axial Pros, I found them to be a good tire and could count on around 1,500 miles. GP 3000's, which I have a few friends that ride them, always seemed to cut just a little easier. Not all the way through, but just on the rubber suface. I even had a friend get 600-700 miles out of GP Supersonics. I am riding Vredestein Tri-Comps now and have 600 miles on them. If I cleaned them up they would look like new tires.
San Francisco, North BayMeDotOrg
May 28, 2001 5:17 PM
Through Golden Gate Park, down the great highway, over the Golden Gate Bridge, a lot in Marin County. There is just a lot of road trash, mostly rocks and broken bottles. Near the ocean it is windy a great deal of the time so there is always something new...

I'm not kidding about the Vittorias. I was flatting about every 70 miles or so.
GP3000's should work great.Whatever
May 25, 2001 10:07 PM
I have ridden just about every type of California backroad including many that you'll be on for the first 1/2 of the ride. I use Conti GP3000's now and think that they are great. I get around 1000 miles on the rear then rotate, so figure 2K for a set. I am no flyweight either...220 on a good day. I have had no on-the-road flats since I started riding them (two sets ago). I have also had no problem getting them on and off the rim, except for a little fussiness the first time you mount them, which is par for the course for a kevlar-bead tire that comes flattened out in a box.

Blue Bayou has it is probably more important how you ride than what you ride...steer around the obvious junk and brush off your tires (while riding, of course) if you do hit anything that makes you wince.

Start with a new set (give 'em a shakedown ride first, of course) and you'll do fine. And have a great ride. Boy am I jealous.
re: "Credit Card" Touring Tire Recommendations?Janet
May 27, 2001 8:08 PM
I did the AIDS ride last year on Panaracer Pasela TG Compe. Never had a flat - the entire 7 days.

Enjoy the ride, it's a fantastic experience - wish I were going this year!