Tandem Cycling - Tire Replacement on Mavic T217
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04-22-04, 09:08 AM
We have been using the Avocet Fasgrip 28mm tires on our Co-Motion Cappucino for the last 4 years and have been satisfied with them at 295 gms. and 26mm actual width. Considering our total weight at 330 lbs., is the Michelin 25mm Pro Race an acceptable substitute? We mostly do credit card touring and very seldom use our panniers. After reading how dead the Gator and other tires feel, we want to keep or enhance the responsiveness the Fasgrips had. Are there any actual tire width/weight facts out there and what is the narrowest tire we can run on the T217? Mark, Rudy?
04-22-04, 12:35 PM
I ran 23mm - 25mm tires on T217 rims for about 4,500 miles so I don't believe your 25mm target width is a constraint. However, I've provided a link to a compatibility table lower on this reply which might be of interest.
At 330lbs, a 25mm is also OK for a performance / fast recreational tire, but 28mm is still a better choice for all-around use.
As for your tire choices, compound durability is really variable depending on what your roads are like. My general recommendation for folks looking to change tires is to check with other tandem teams who ride in your region to find out what they have had the best luck with. We have friends who live in Bend that started a YahooGroups forum called "BOBCATS" http://sports.groups.yahoo.com/group/or_bobcats/ Their forum might be a good place to ask if you don't have any regular tandem riding companions in your area. Eugene is another hotbed for tandems.
My experience with Michelin's Pro Race tires is great performance, short life... particularly on a tandem and even with our silky-smooth roads here in the Southeast. As for the Gatorskins, they would definitely feel quite different (harsh) compared to your FasGrips, particularly if you're running the newer Carbon 12's which have a very supple sidewall (almost too thin in some respects). However, the Gatorskins are certainly quite durable; no question about that: just not sporty in their feel. Notwithstanding the thin sidewalls, the FasGrips are still one of the better "performance tires" for tandems and the 28's are a really nice size for most average size tandem teams.
If you haven't read it, Mark Johnson of Precision Tandems in Kansas has put up a pretty good Web site that discusses many of the issues associated with selecting the right tire for a tandem. http://www.precisiontandems.com/arttiresbymark.htm
As for matching tire width's to rims, Sheldon Brown has a nice table on the Web. Please note, you'll need to measure the inside width of your T217 to use the table.
Hope this helps.
Note: We have been running 700x23 & 700x25 Vredestein Fortezza's at 145psi on our road tandems since 1997. A very good performance tire with moderate life. However, not ideal if you have to encounter too many road hazards as a casing cut usually does-in the tire -- even beyond salvation by Superglue.
04-23-04, 08:52 AM
Thanks for all the great info, Mark. Considering rim width and over all bike weight (it's coupled) We will stick with a 28mm tire. Unfortunately, my LBS said Fasgrips were no longer in production and we naively accepted this info and started looking for a belted and foldable tire. The new Carbon K or Conti Ultra 3000 is what we will try. Then try and talk Co-Motion out of a Robusta!
Thanks again, Neil
When Conti stopped making their Ultra 2000 tyres we were excited to see their replacement was the Ultra 3000 with I think a silicone compound. They were quite nice but with one drawback, they cut easily and seems to have a magnet for glass, wonder if this has something to do wih the compound. Living in a third world country, motorists, in most cases in minibus taxis, dump their beer bottles, while driving, next to the road. All our punctures also happened during a wet spell and I also suspect the grain shape of glass slivers causes then to wash out to the edge of silt and gravel washed onto the road. Well, we had punctures galore. We now have Gatorskins in 28C on the tandem and no problems so far.
Keep those wheels spinning!!!
Phil from VA
04-26-04, 06:01 PM
Rivendell has a nice 28 folding tire called Rolly Poly that will take 120 psi. I can recommend them. I used the Michelin 25s, but they are only rated at 95 psi.
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