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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 08-04-08, 01:26 AM   #1
sunburst
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widest tires I can fit on a narrow rim?

Here's the long version:
biggest tire I can fit on a narrow rim?


The short version:
Just got a used touring bike for day-trekking. Measured the internal rim width at 13mm - what!?!
Sheldon says I can fit a tire width from 18 to 25mm.

I want/need a 28mm minimum for this bike to work for me, and really would prefer a 32mm.
I want some comfortable tires! 25mm's not going to do that. I might even like a little thread riding hardpack.

If you think I can go with a 28 or 32mm tire, then suggestions appreciated.
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Old 08-04-08, 01:41 AM   #2
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25 isn't actually a bad size at all. I've been using 25 mm Conti's on a few of my bikes for years now. Even carefull jump curbs with them here and there. All my longer rides have been with one bike that has sported 25 mm for years.

Even rode a couple of them through a park in my area and had zero issues on the hard pack dirt walking trails.
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Old 08-04-08, 03:54 AM   #3
Bill Kapaun
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Sheldon also said his chart was a bit conservative.
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Old 08-04-08, 04:40 AM   #4
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Fit the 28's. Keep the air pressure between 4 to 5 bars
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Old 08-04-08, 12:24 PM   #5
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I was also surprised to find 13mm rims (27" wheels) on the old bike I just got. I rode it with 1 1/4 inch (31.75mm) tires for a week while I waited for new tires. I think those were too large. Taking turns at low speed felt bad, very slushy, like my tires were in sand.

I replaced those with some new 1 1/8" (28.6mm) and it's fine now, as long as I keep them pumped up to maximum pressure.
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Old 08-04-08, 12:41 PM   #6
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Great time for this to come up... I am working on fixing a bike for a friend and she's insisting on new tires. The bike has 622x 13c rims and looking at Sheldon's chart I was disappointed that I couldn't fit 28mm tires for her. Seems that the consensus on commuting tires is in the 25-35 range. Glad to know that Sheldon went conservative with the chart and that I might be able to squeeze some 28s in there for her. Anyone try this and fail or care to share success stories?
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Old 09-08-08, 09:42 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by viplala View Post
Fit the 28's. Keep the air pressure between 4 to 5 bars
Got the 28's and have been pumping them up to 80psi (5.5 bars) and then running them for a week or two without checking. They feel fine, and I like the thread for hardpack, but they sure look small in that frame, and with those canti brakes. They weren't hard to get on my rims, but the gatorskins were a b!tch to get off. Hate to say, I had to use a screwdriver to get it started after breaking one plastic tire iron, and trying two of three other types.

700x28 just doesn't seem like a touring width. Still baffled at Trek (although it could have been the bike shop's fault - the previous owner said they built up the frame) for these skinny rims. Don't know how the bike will do with a load, but initial tests (hardware & grocery store) indicates I'm going to have to divide the load between front and rear.


Last edited by sunburst; 09-08-08 at 09:46 PM.
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Old 09-09-08, 07:17 AM   #8
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I have run 35s on 17mm wide rims. It looks funny but it never caused me any trouble. I didn't like it, it was only for my winter tires.
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Old 09-09-08, 09:03 AM   #9
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How do you like those Marathons?

I'm looking for a 700-28 with a reflective sidewall, and it looks like those tires might fit the bill.

Does it corner OK with all that tread?
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Old 09-09-08, 09:18 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by viplala View Post
Fit the 28's. Keep the air pressure between 4 to 5 bars
This doesn't work.
You can do it, but it doesn't work.

The whole point of running fatter tires is that you can run them at lower pressure, so they absorb more road shock. If you mount fat tires on narrow rims, then you have to keep the fat tires inflated very high just to keep them from squirming from side-to-side and handling poorly. And if you inflate them very high,,,,, then they're not going to absorb road shock like you wanted them to do. So if you mount fat tires on skinny rims and over-inflate them, all you end up with is fat tires that ride just as hard as skinny tires would have, but that weigh more than skinny tires.

If you want to run wider tires, do yourself a favor and get wider rims. The fat tires will ride and handle well at the lower pressures they're intended for. You cannot "make" fat tires work properly on skinny rims.
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Old 09-09-08, 02:13 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SlimAgainSoon View Post
I'm looking for a 700-28 with a reflective sidewall, and it looks like those tires might fit the bill.

Does it corner OK with all that tread?
It corners fine, and gives me lots more confidence on my minor ventures off-road. Plus I run over road debris with impunity now. The bike was fast with the 700x25 Conti-3000s that came on it, and I expected to lose a lot of that feel when changing to the 500g Schwalbes, but I got used to them immediately. Glad I made the change. And the source for these is Niagra Cycle Works at $27.87 plus about $5 shipping. Still saved a bundle compared to the $50 each at my LBS.
http://www.niagaracycle.com/advanced...8811b0&x=0&y=0


Quote:
Originally Posted by Doug5150;
This doesn't work.
You can do it, but it doesn't work.
Do you mean the pressure is too low? Or the tires are too wide for 13mm rims?
4-5 bars seemed to be within the recommendations of Schwalbe, if I remember right. And I found a tire width chart at BikeTiresDirect last night that is a little different from Sheldon's. It shows the 28's can fit a 13mm rim.
http://www.biketiresdirect.com/a119/...th/article.htm

Btw, your screen name - based on the Peavey amp?
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Old 09-09-08, 03:29 PM   #12
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A standard, and somewhat conservative, rule of thumb for tire sizing is 1.8-2.2 times your rim width. So 28's are the maximum size (actually 28.6) you'd want to put on. I have 32's on 14mm rims, which are jut slightly larger than the 30.8 I should be using, but I have no problem. I do need to keep them inflated to the maximum pressure, or they can feel a little squishy on hard turns.
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Old 09-09-08, 10:51 PM   #13
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Here's another chart, from Schwalbe: http://schwalbe.com/gbl/en/tech_info...s&tn_subPoint=

Note the big jump between rec'd tire widths for 17mm rims, and 19mm rims. My rims are 18mm, according to this they should handle a a 26x2.0 well enough.
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