Dec 16, 2002 3:02 PM
|Here's another obvious question from the runner venturing into cycling: Is there a general rule regarding tire wear/when to change them? I ask this as I've gotten some rather different life out of various brands/models (Vittoria Open Corsa-less than 800, Michelin Pro Race 1,200+). Any numbers on the Continental GP 3000 or Michelin Axial Carbon? How can one determine tire wear with regard to the sidewalls in particular? Running shoes are easy -just chuck 'em after 300-400 miles to be safe but is it pure wasteful extravagance to discard a tire after, say, 1000mi. (or some appropriate number) as a general rule. Any thoughts are appreciated.|
|re: Tire Mileage||mixinbeatz|
Dec 16, 2002 3:16 PM
|Most tires I just ride till I start getting flats regularly. I know that is not the most exact response, but you can usually tell when they are getting thin. I get several thousand miles out of my Ultra 2000 wire bead tires on my rain bike and usually get slightly less out of my 3000's on my race bike. People always talk about sidewall failures on contis, but I have never had a failure in 20,000 miles or so since I switched over from various generic performance brands.|
|re: Tire Mileage||C-40|
Dec 16, 2002 3:46 PM
|I get 2500-3000 miles from a rear Conti GP3000 and about twice that mileage from the front tire.
It pays to buys tires in quantity from euro sources (like totalcycling.com)that charge half the U.S. price. Find a friend and get 12 at a time.
|There is no right answer....||GreenFan|
Dec 16, 2002 3:54 PM
|Tire wear is a result of friction, and friction involves a number of variables...your weight, how smoothly you ride, and general road surface being probably the three biggest variables. I ride on Conti 3000s because they have a reputation for durability that I've found to be true, at the same time they also have a reputation for being "not the most supple tire" on the road, but I'm willing to give that up to try and counter all the broken glass and crap road surfaces I regularly come across. Generally I will ride a tire until the casing threads begin to show or there is a deep enough cut in the tread to make me nervous about trusting the tire (funny things can happen when 120 lbs of pressure are involved). Normally I don't ever get to that stage because a nail or some other hazard will have trashed the tire before I can get every bit of wear out of it. If I am lucky enough to get full wear out of a Conti, it will normally be in the neighborhood of about 1500-2000 miles.|
|Tire wear factors||Kerry|
Dec 16, 2002 4:43 PM
|Front tires do not wear out except under extreme conditions or tandems. They age, crack, craze, and get cut, but do not lose weight due to wear after many Ks of miles. Rear tire wear is primarily proportional to rider weight - the power transmission through the tire is what scrubs off the rubber. Rough riding style (constant "chuff, chuff, chuff" sound) will speed wear. At 180 lbs/82kg, I get ca. 2K miles/3K km on a rear Conti GP 3000. My 125 lb wife gets at least 2X that mileage. "Older" tires wear faster, so if you put a brand new tire on the rear, you will get 10-20% more distance from it than if the tire was used on the front for several months. Tires don't appreciably age in storage, but in use outdoors. Past that, tread thickness and rubber compound is the primary determinant. A Conti GP has about 0.055 inches/1.4 mm of carbon black filled rubber tread thickness, while a GP 3000 is 0.04 inches/1.0 mm of silica filled rubber tread. A GP will give more than 2X the mileage of a GP 3000. Similar results apply to other brands.|
Dec 16, 2002 6:15 PM
|All the posts above are dead on about tire wear. There are many contributing factors that will add up to how long a tire will last. Rider weight and tire pressure are among the top of the list.
I've also found that the inexpensive tires generally use a harder rubber compound making them last longer. However they don't have the ride characteristics of a more expensive tire. The expensive tires ride better as they use a softer rubber compound, but don't last as long as the cheaper tires.
The general rule-of-thumb is to pick the most god awful ugly tire you can find and they will last forever. I had a set of Conti GP3000's with the yellow tire tread and I finally pulled them off as I got tired of looking at them and hung them in my garage. Later I installed them on my 2nd bike and they went another 1K or so. I don't know how color would make a difference, but I went with a all black Conti GP3000 and I had to pull off the rear tire at 800 miles.
I've also found that some tires differ from batch to batch, depending on the manufacturer.
I usually look for tires that are on sale and marked down a lot. Unfortunately these are often are discontinued models and if you like the tires you are SOL if you want to continue with that model.
In a perfect world I'd go with Conti GP3000's front and rear. On a budget I'd go with a Conti GP3000 rear and cheaper tire on the front rim as my fronts usually last 3 times longer than the rear and I can just replace the rear tire when needed.
Or when you are old and retired like me and living on a retirement paycheck with a teenage daughter in the house you troll the internet and buy what ever is the best deal.
I've found some really good tire on sale for around $20.00.
But in a nutshell- watch your psi, too high a psi is the number one cause for premature tire wear.