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Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

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Old 05-11-08, 07:47 PM   #1
JeffCF
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Are 700x35c tires/wheels too wimpy for occasional off-roading?

I will be buying a commuting bike to use instead of my old department-store mountain bike.
The bike I am considering has fairly smooth 700x35c tires, which seem less robust than my 26xsomething knobby tires.
Every now and then I find it convenient to take brief shortcuts along dirt trails.
Nothing too serious, but there are roots and rocks and holes instead of smooth pavement.
Will 700x35c non-knobby tires be okay for that?
The planned bike has fenders, so I'm not sure I could add bigger/knobbier tires.

Thanks,
Jeff

[1st post]
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Old 05-11-08, 08:09 PM   #2
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I have 700 x 32 and I think they're fine on dirt. The last part of my commute I usually ride for a ways down a dirt jogging trail. I always feel like I should get out of the way of the pedestrians, so I've occassionally taken to the ungroomed deep gravel on the side of the main trail to avoid them. I can ride in that, and over tree roots and rocks with no problem at all.

If the bike handles well, and you're a decent rider, you'll have no problem getting used to a skinnier tire. In fact, you will really like how much easier those slick tires roll on the pavement!
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Old 05-11-08, 08:11 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffCF View Post
I will be buying a commuting bike to use instead of my old department-store mountain bike.
The bike I am considering has fairly smooth 700x35c tires, which seem less robust than my 26xsomething knobby tires.
Every now and then I find it convenient to take brief shortcuts along dirt trails.
Nothing too serious, but there are roots and rocks and holes instead of smooth pavement.
Will 700x35c non-knobby tires be okay for that?
The planned bike has fenders, so I'm not sure I could add bigger/knobbier tires.

Thanks,
Jeff

[1st post]
Knobby tires help for mud, but if the terrain is hard-packed dirt, roots, and rocks, a tire with a light tread pattern will work just fine. 35s can handle that sort of terrain pretty well, in my opinion.

I've been taking almost exactly that sort of trail quite a bit lately (lots of roots and rocks), with a bike that has 37mm tires. The slightly narrower tire combined with the probably higher center of gravity of a bike with 700c tires might require more skill than a full-blown MTB, but it can absolutely be done. I also think that the 700C tires roll better over big rocks. Of course, not having a suspension hurts.

I probably wouldn't recommend a rigid bike with 35mm's for a ton of miles over roots, but for occasional off-roading it can be done. You'll just have to learn that the 35mm wheel has less side-to-side stability. But it actually rolls better over stuff, so you might find situations where it's actually better.
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Old 05-11-08, 08:24 PM   #4
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I use Performance SpeedTracs on heavy trails and they work fine.
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Old 05-11-08, 08:31 PM   #5
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http://npbikeshop.com/itemdetails.cf...gId=39&id=4966
Continental double fighters.

I got a free pair brand new if anyone wants. 700x35.
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Old 05-11-08, 08:32 PM   #6
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I also think that the 700C tires roll better over big rocks. Of course, not having a suspension hurts.
Actually, the bike I'm considering does have a front suspension. My old bike does not.
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Old 05-11-08, 08:44 PM   #7
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I have 700 x 35 and they work fine. I deal with some loose gravel at times, muddy patches, grass.

Maybe not truly off road, but they have worked.
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Old 05-11-08, 09:52 PM   #8
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I just got a bike with 38's and I need new tires so I am looking for some good advice too.
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Old 05-12-08, 06:14 AM   #9
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Back in the day I'd routinely take woods trail shortcuts. On standard 3x road wheels with tubular tires. Never had a problem, just rode carefully and lifted the bike over nasties. I'd say it isn't whether, it's how careful you'll have to be.
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Old 05-12-08, 07:19 AM   #10
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I've gone on dirt paths with 35's on my hybrid. It works ok for occassional use.
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Old 05-12-08, 07:17 PM   #11
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Thanks for all the responses!
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Old 05-12-08, 09:35 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slvoid View Post
http://npbikeshop.com/itemdetails.cf...gId=39&id=4966
Continental double fighters.

I got a free pair brand new if anyone wants. 700x35.
Sorry for the thread hijack, but slvoid I want your tires!

I pmed you. Lemme know what the deal is.
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Old 05-12-08, 11:25 PM   #13
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can i piggyback on this thread and ask a off-road quesiton????

Can i get some other wheels and tires for my 7.6fx and hit some minor trails? I get asked by friends all the time to hit the trails, but dont really have the bike for it
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Old 05-13-08, 01:51 AM   #14
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WTB Crossmark.
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