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  1. #1
    Junior Member
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    upgrading stock tires (700x32c)

    Hey everyone,

    I recently purchased a new bike ('12 trek 7.4 wsd).
    I'm really in love with my bike but I am itching for skinnier tires even though the 32's are super skinny compared to my mtbs'

    Anyway, the tires are really good and I hope to upgrade them to a 25c or even 23c once they are worn out and need replacing...my question is the wheels? To go skinnier, do you guys think i need to replace the wheels or rims? The rim is a Bontrager Nebula rim...does anyone have any experience with these? Or should I just try to wing it when the time comes?

    Thanks!

    here is a pic of my bike with current stock tires:
    FX 7.4.jpg

  2. #2
    Galveston County Texas 10 Wheels's Avatar
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    The wheels should be fine.

    You may want to consider 28's
    [SIZE=1][B]What I like about Texas[/B]
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    Set F1re To The Ra1n ( NY Night Rain Ride)
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  3. #3
    7-speed doomsday prepper ThermionicScott's Avatar
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    If you want to go faster, the main thing holding you back at this point is the upright position, not the tires.
    Quote Originally Posted by chandltp View Post
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  4. #4
    Constant tinkerer FastJake's Avatar
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    +1 Are you looking to make this a road bike? Better to start with a road bike to begin with. The only bikes I have with flat bars are ones that are meant to be used offroad or for tricks, jumps, etc. All my "road" bikes have drop bars or bullhorns.

    I wouldn't go down to 23s right away, they will give a noticeably harsher ride with little benefit. 25s or 28s are a good compromise.
    Why "derailer" is the correct way to spell the gear-change mechanism: sheldonbrown.com/derailer.html

  5. #5
    Kitten Legion Master
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    The 23s will help go faster, but being in an upright position on your bike will limit you for top speeds. The faster you go, the more wind resistance becomes are problem.

  6. #6
    Can'tre Member 3alarmer's Avatar
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    +1 to most of the above........skinny tires is not always an upgrade,
    and on this particular bike, seems to make little sense.

    If you want a gofast bike, look for a gofast bike. Otherwise, log some
    miles on the one you have and develop massive quads so that when
    you get a gofast bike, it will go really fast.
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    There is only no god, and Cyclaholic is his prophet.

  7. #7
    Junior Member
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    Thanks for the advice! I wasn't really looking for increased speed...more for aesthetics and options for whenever my current tires are worn out and need replacing. 28c sounds good..not sure why I mentioned 23's lol
    Bikes in my life:
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  8. #8
    Senior Member AndreyT's Avatar
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    Tire width itself has virtually no relation to the speed (i.e. resistance). 28's will not "go faster" than 32's. The lion's share of the resistance produced by the tire depends on the tire air pressure, not on the tire width. Higher pressure produces lower rolling resistance. Since narrower tires are usually run at higher pressure, it eventually lead to an ignorant urban legend about narrow tires being "faster" because of their smaller width.

    In reality, when run at the same air pressure, wider tires are actually faster, since they produce slightly less rolling resistance. The effect is negligible though.

  9. #9
    Senior Member AndreyT's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ysosa003 View Post
    ...more for aesthetics and options for whenever my current tires are worn out and need replacing. 28c sounds good..not sure why I mentioned 23's lol
    If your bike was originally designed for wider tires, I'd say that putting a narrow tire in that fork will actually make it look worse, not better.

  10. #10
    Constant tinkerer FastJake's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ysosa003 View Post
    Thanks for the advice! I wasn't really looking for increased speed...more for aesthetics and options for whenever my current tires are worn out and need replacing. 28c sounds good..not sure why I mentioned 23's lol
    Did I miss something? When did narrower tires become more aesthetically appealing?

    Quote Originally Posted by AndreyT View Post
    In reality, when run at the same air pressure, wider tires are actually faster, since they produce slightly less rolling resistance. The effect is negligible though.
    Yeah, but then you're just cheating. See Sheldon Brown's article on tires:

    A common debate among cyclists centers on the issue of whether a wider tire has more or less rolling resistance at the same pressure. The constant pressure is proposed because it appears more scientific to eliminate this as a variable, but this is not realistic in practice. The short answer to this question is that, yes, a wider tire of similar construction will have lower rolling resistance than a narrower one at the same pressure. This fact is, however, of no practical value. If you are comparing two tires of similar construction, with the same load, and the same pressure, either the wider tire is overinflated, or the narrower tire is underinflated!
    Why "derailer" is the correct way to spell the gear-change mechanism: sheldonbrown.com/derailer.html

  11. #11
    Senior Member tarwheel's Avatar
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    You might not be able to use 23s or 25s with those rims. I would focus on buying some lightweight, folding 28s or 32s with smooth tread. That will make your bike roll faster but the tires should fit your rims and you will benefit from the lower weight and rolling resistance. Some nice relatively light 32s include Vittoria Randonneur Hypers, Panaracer Paselas and Continental Gatorskins. Some nice folding 28s include Clement Stradas, Vittoria Rubino Pros and Contnental GP 4 Seasons.

  12. #12
    Senior Member 1FJEF's Avatar
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    If this is your bike


    you might try looking here (click on details). Perhaps a 25mm for just the front? Ride it for a bit, see if you can feel or see an advantage.
    If you don't like it you're out some money.
    If it seems fine, but not an upgrade, you've got a spare 32mm tire to use on the rear (which for me wears out almost twice as fast as the front). So no worries.
    If you like it, then you've accomplished your goal. Then you could even try a 28 rear with the 25 front.
    If you are heavy, like me, I would stick with the 32mm !
    By the way, how much do you ride? Are the stock tires going to last months? Years?

  13. #13
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    Thanks for all the advice! I personally do find thinner tires more appealing (maybe because I got tired of looking at the fatties on my mtb lol). And yes that is my bike. I try to ride as much as I can (group rides/critical mass/running errands, etc). Soon, I will be riding to work every day about 5 miles round trip. So I am assuming they will last a good amount of time.

    And yes, now that I think about it more and take in all the advice, I will not go any lower than 28's.


    PS: I recently got into a bike vs bike accident and my front wheel is now very slightly bent so that the brakes brush up against it at a certain spot and the the wheel very slightly wobbles when riding. To me, it seems totally neglible but should I have this looked at by my LBS? The bike is barely a month old, would trek warranty cover something like this? Again it is pretty negligible but it bugs me..
    Last edited by ysosa003; 05-30-12 at 03:45 PM.
    Bikes in my life:
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  14. #14
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    If bike that new you should have post sales service period included when you bought it?

    but that is dealer policy not Trek corp. NB user damage is not a manufacturing defect.

  15. #15
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    My Trek 7.5 fx came with 32's. I changed these to 28's. Then to 25's. The 25's give the bike a more nimble feeling on the road. But my bike is set up a bit different than yours.
    YMMV.

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