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Old 06-13-08, 05:27 PM   #1
Larry64
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real world road tire

Any ideas on a strong 700x23c tire. I have had 4 flats this year and walking home in my cleat's sucks. They have all been pin holes from junk on the road. I need a real world tire for Michigan roads. Thanks.
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Old 06-13-08, 05:57 PM   #2
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If they're just pinholes, they can be fixed on the road:



Carry a Mini pump or CO2 with you. Definitely beats killing your road cleats and your feet walking home.


I never leave for a ride without a mini-tool, an extra tube, a couple of patches, and my Road Morph pump, unless the ride is so short (<2 miles) that I know I won't mind walking if I have to.
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Old 06-13-08, 05:58 PM   #3
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I have had good luck with my Continental 3000 tires... but I don't think they make them anymore.
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Old 06-13-08, 06:07 PM   #4
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I've had good luck with Continental Gatorbacks. In fact, I can't remember having any flats with them but I don't get a lot of flats anyway.
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Old 06-13-08, 07:49 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Larry64 View Post
Any ideas on a strong 700x23c tire. I have had 4 flats this year and walking home in my cleat's sucks. They have all been pin holes from junk on the road. I need a real world tire for Michigan roads. Thanks.
You might want to consider bringing spare tubes, patch kit and a minipump.
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Old 06-13-08, 11:53 PM   #6
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I've had really good luck with my Bontrager Race Lites. They're made by Conti.

And you should really learn how to fix a flat. It's not that hard.
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Old 06-14-08, 12:49 AM   #7
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+1 for Gatorskins. My place of employment shares and alley with a scrapyard which means that my last 100 feet is spent trying to dodge debris (in vain). I've had 1 pinch flat since May 2007.
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Old 06-14-08, 02:30 AM   #8
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Patch kit/pump/tube or a good pair of walking shoes.

Panaracer Tourguards,but they don't enough for some people.
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Old 06-14-08, 04:31 AM   #9
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Specialized Armadillo. Not the lightest tire, but very solid for cummuting.
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Old 06-14-08, 04:40 AM   #10
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Any ideas on a strong 700x23c tire. I have had 4 flats this year and walking home in my cleat's sucks. They have all been pin holes from junk on the road. I need a real world tire for Michigan roads. Thanks.
If you are commuting then try the Conti Contact 700c28 road tire. Great winter tire. Specialized Armadillo tires are pretty bullet proof and I would go with a 25 or 28 in that tire. If you are racing the Conti GP 4000 (replacement for the GP 3000) are very tough with the vectran and high TPI count. If racing then use the heavier tire for training and GP4K for race day.
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Old 06-14-08, 06:46 AM   #11
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Specialized Armadillo. Not the lightest tire, but very solid for cummuting.
+1 These are considered the gold standard for a puncture resistant (read: resistant, not proof) bike tire. As noted, they are not light or very responsive but they do avoid most flats.

Also +1 on learning to fix a flat on the road and having a spare tube and mini-pump or CO2 inflator. No competent rider should ever have to walk home after a minor flat. Walking or a cell phone call should be reserved for real damage.
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Old 06-14-08, 07:04 AM   #12
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No flat so far with my Gatorskins.
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Old 06-14-08, 08:02 AM   #13
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I second either the Specialized Armadillo or the Conti GP 4000 with the vectran belt (I think there are several models of 4000 series and some don't have the vectran belt?). The Gatorbacks are not quite as puncture resistent as either of the above tires and it's sidewalls are paper thin leaving you exposed to sidewall puncture and damage. The GP4000 is a lighter tire then the Armadillo and it's not quite as flat resistent either, but a darn good tire. I just bought a set of the GP4000's because I've heard a lot of good things about here and elsewhere's, and have about 1,000 miles on them and so far so good; this is probably the best light road tire Conti has ever made and I was never a fan of their lighter tires!

I don't like tire liners in road bikes because your using thinner tubes and the edges of the liners will eventually rub a hole in the tube, plus adds unwanted weight. I do use Mr Tuffy's (with the ends sanded so as not to create an edge to rub a tube and puncture it) on my MTB but thats because the tubes are thicker and I ride off road with it thus weight is not an issue since I'm not going fast or far plus it reduces pinch flats when going over rough terrain. But I don't use them on my road or even on the touring bike due to rotational weight on long rides can become burdensome, and besides on the touring bike I use a stout heavy tire anyways.

I also hate Slime tubes for road bikes because the sealant will not seal even pinholes above 65psi, plus they weigh a ton and make a mess of your rims when it blows green gunk from a leak.

Your first line of defense against a flat is the tire, if something makes it pass a stout tire then it probably will make it past everything else.

Of course always carry a patch kit and a pump because no tire is flat proof.
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Old 06-14-08, 08:18 AM   #14
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I've been riding Continental GP3000 for several years and lately GP4000. I average approx 1500-2000 miles between flats.
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Old 06-14-08, 08:32 AM   #15
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I've had something rub it's way through my gatorback a few times that I could never find to get out. Tire had a lot of tread left so I put a tire liner on it and no flats since.
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Old 06-14-08, 09:16 AM   #16
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Bontrager race lite hardcase. Also, if you haven't found the suspected debris, don't over look your rims/rimtape as being a problem. Use velox cloth tape. I used to have numerous frequent flats. I've gone 1,500 miles without a flat since I've switched to the combo mentioned.
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Old 06-14-08, 10:25 AM   #17
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You'll find that any of the tires that have a kevlar belt (that's belt, not bead) will give you a lot more flat resistance. Especially to smaller pinhole type flats. Basically all the tires mentioned have this feature. Any of them will offer you more flat resistance than what you have now. Personally I prefer the tires with the softer and more supple sidewalls. They seem to roll easier and faster and offer a nicer ride.

If you find you're getting your flats shortly after going through a big pothole or other bump then you may be pinch flatting. The kevlar belts won't help that sort of flat. For that you should switch to a 25 or 28 mm tire for these rougher road routes.

But I'm with the others and strongly suggest that you need to learn to carry a pump or CO2 and a tube or two. 4 flats in a year or even on 1/2 a year is not uncommon at all. Bicycle tires are just not as tough as the far thicker car or motorcycle tires. Flats are a fact of life and you need to travel with the stuff to repair them just as much as you need to carry your water bottle.

My bikes are all set up with their own seat pouch that carries levers, tube and a small folding toolset. A mini pump is attached to the bottle carrier on all of them except for the two that have the EXCELLENT Zefal HPX pump sprung into place along the seat tube.

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Old 06-14-08, 12:36 PM   #18
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do you not carry a spare inner tube??
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Old 06-14-08, 12:39 PM   #19
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i like my michelin erilium 2 road tires. i also have used panaracer stradius sport with tourguard. i crushed a glass bottle with the latter tire once and aside from startling me, nothing even happened. that doesnt mean that is what they are for, though
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Old 06-14-08, 01:20 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Larry64 View Post
Any ideas on a strong 700x23c tire. I have had 4 flats this year and walking home in my cleat's sucks. They have all been pin holes from junk on the road. I need a real world tire for Michigan roads. Thanks.
Lucky you! I've had 8 flats in new Hutchinson carbons in about 4 weeks. Each time they've been pinholes cause by very fine wire or very small glass splinters. I've not had to walk home as I always carry two tubes and stick-on patches, but it's bloody annoying.
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Old 06-14-08, 10:58 PM   #21
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Lucky you! I've had 8 flats in new Hutchinson carbons in about 4 weeks. Each time they've been pinholes cause by very fine wire or very small glass splinters. I've not had to walk home as I always carry two tubes and stick-on patches, but it's bloody annoying.
That fine wire is from steel belted tires that have worn out (usually due to severe misalignment, toe or camber problems) and the steel belt gets exposed and starts to shred as the pavement eats at it, and then we cyclists come along and the little bits of wire penetrate our tires. Believe me, I've had those fine wires penetrate kevlar belted tires. Armadillos don't use kevlar-not sure what they use, and neither does the Conti 4000 that use Vectran fiber instead that they claim is 10 time tougher then kevlar (so far I'm happy). While a kevlar vest may stop a bullet it won't stop an arrow or a knife, and the kevlar used in tires is very thin layed up in a very thin belt thus sharp stuff like fine wire and glass splinters will either cut the belt or seperate the fibers apart and penetrate; and while it may reduce flats from the old days of cotton or nylon belted tires, it's still not what it's cracked up to be as some people will lead you to believe.

I'm glad you carry spare tubes, but do you carry a patch kit as well? How far to you ride from home? If more then hour I would carry a spare ultralight tire just in case you damage a tire beyond repair.
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Old 06-15-08, 04:42 AM   #22
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People who have to walk home after getting a flat probably shouldn't be riding bikes that use 23mm tires, or cleated shoes for that matter. Better than searching for the perfect tire would be learning how to fix a flat.
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Old 06-15-08, 05:12 AM   #23
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Any ideas on a strong 700x23c tire. I have had 4 flats this year and walking home in my cleat's sucks. They have all been pin holes from junk on the road. I need a real world tire for Michigan roads. Thanks.
Use something wider than a 23. Pressure makes punctures.
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Old 06-15-08, 07:44 AM   #24
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Riding my 12 mile loop around the neighborhood, I'm never more than about 2 miles from the house, and I don't carry flat stuff for that, figure I'll just walk home if need be. And yeah, it sucks, but not for that long. But anything longer than that, and I carry flat stuff for sure.
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Old 06-15-08, 03:28 PM   #25
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Use something wider than a 23. Pressure makes punctures.
this is a very bad statement...why is then that tubulars WITHOUT kevlar are less prone to flats, especially pinch flats, then clinchers even with kevlar?

But there are too many drawbacks with tubulars to make it worth while even though I still use a set on an old road I use occasionally for group rides. Problems like higher rolling resistence, impossible to fix a flat in the rain, any weight savings you gain with lighter tubular rims and tires are offset by the weight of spare tubulars you have to carry in case of a flat (you can repair them on the road but it takes about 45 minutes to do IF you know where the hole is).

I usually have less flats on tubulars, but the headache involved when you do is just too much for me to want to deal with...especially since I'm now over 70.
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