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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 10-27-11, 05:59 AM   #1
simon2106
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puncture resistant tyres for the daily commute

Dear All

having started commuting between bingley and leeds about three months ago it has become apparent that the standard rubber supplied on the specialized allez sport (700 x 23's) might not be suited to pot holes and the odd diversion onto paths with bits of broken glass in order to avoid getting stuck in traffic. i have been advised to get some better tyres for the job and have whittled it down to 4 possibles and i am looking for some practicle advice as to which to chose and therefore which is the best for the job in hand

The choices are
1 continental gator hardshell
2 schwalbe durano plus
3 specilaized armadillo elite
4 bontrager race all weather hard case

All comments gratefully received as i need to get this right

thanks

Last edited by simon2106; 10-27-11 at 07:19 AM. Reason: spelling corrections
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Old 10-27-11, 06:06 AM   #2
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Have not ridden any of those except for the armadillos.

I can say that the 'dillos are nearly bomb proof. I received a lot of carcass cut and slashes, but never got a puncture. They work. However, they are really heavy, I mean heavy. They roll really slow, like toast through marmalade. So it is a trade off.

The Contis get good press here, have you considered the 4 season model? The four season, I am told, has good resistance to punctures, but rolls better.

Not to sure about the Bontragers. Some like them and others may not.
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Old 10-27-11, 06:06 AM   #3
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How many flats have you had?

I have a 25 specilaized armadillo on the front. It is a very hard stiff tire.
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Old 10-27-11, 07:13 AM   #4
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cereal, thanks for the general advice. might be a personal thing?

10 wheels, i do 80 miles a week in 6 journeys (3 days at twice a day) and the worst i have encountered is 3 punctures in 2 weeks. so that works out at 1 in 4 which has got me to be able do a relaxed tube replacement at the road side in less than 15 minutes! a bit frustrating but one of the hazards i suppose as the bike is getting a rough ride (pardon the pun) at the moment. and a wet autumn is upon us which adds to general safety issues too
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Old 10-27-11, 07:16 AM   #5
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commuting tire

Have you looked into the Serfas City Drifter tire? Very reasonably priced, highly puncture resistant, rolls fast, its a wider tire (i have the 2") but they offer it in a 1 3/4" i believe but they roll over pot holes and cracks like gravy. I even ride on dirt trails with them just fine. Check out REI.com and read the reviews before you make your ultimate decision.
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Old 10-27-11, 07:17 AM   #6
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Panaracer Pasella Tour Guards have been awesome tires for me, and I've rolled them through gravel, glass, metal strips, screws, you name it...
Part of my commute (actually, most of my commute) is through industrial areas, including a particularly sketchy area by a factory that make screws and bolts.
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Old 10-27-11, 07:23 AM   #7
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jeez guys, sounds like i have it easy on my patch. not too sure on those makes here in the uk but sure i can track them down on the internet and have a look at other reviews. sounds like this is a popular topic. problem was, wanted a road bike for weight and looks, and not a cyclocross model. they just looked a little too bulky?
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Old 10-27-11, 07:27 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wolfwerx View Post
Panaracer Pasella Tour Guards have been awesome tires for me, and I've rolled them through gravel, glass, metal strips, screws, you name it...
Part of my commute (actually, most of my commute) is through industrial areas, including a particularly sketchy area by a factory that make screws and bolts.
+1
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Old 10-27-11, 07:28 AM   #9
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The specialized Dillos are pretty hard and heavy, but also bulletproof. I've always noticed they can be a little squirrelly in the rain, but much less so if you upgrade them to pro's or elites or what have you.
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Old 10-27-11, 07:50 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Rancid View Post
The specialized Dillos are pretty hard and heavy, but also bulletproof. I've always noticed they can be a little squirrelly in the rain, but much less so if you upgrade them to pro's or elites or what have you.
Agree. I didn't like riding with my Dillos in the rain either.
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Old 10-27-11, 08:27 AM   #11
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I've had excellent results with the Conti's over the years, first with the Gatorskin and now with the Hard Shell.

Those experiences are all on sport/road bikes since on my commuter bike (DaHon Curve folder, 16" wheels) I run Schwalbe Marathons + Mr.Tuffy tire liners with excellent puncture resistance. I did have two punctures with the Marathons before I installed the Tuffy's, but none since.

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Old 10-27-11, 08:52 AM   #12
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I had both front and rear with Armadillo All Condition Elite 700x25. Lasted over 4k mi with no punture. Then the rear developed a bulge from a small cut on the sidewall. I changed the rear with a Ultra Gatorskin 700x28 for a softer ride. In less than 1k miles, the Gator had a punture from a small glass that got through. After that, so far no problem after another 1k miles.

I like the ride of the Gatorskin over the Armadillo but I can see more little glass sticks to the tire while the Armadillo has better resistant, however the sidewall bulge I had with the armadillo makes the hardshell a step better in that area. So it's a give or take for either one.
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Old 10-27-11, 12:04 PM   #13
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How wide can your bike accept? You should be able to step up to 25mm, possibly 28mm.
Wider tyres will absorb pothole impact better, they will be a bit heavier but roll better at the same pressure.
Racers use 23mm for aerodynamics which is required at very high speed.
Some good reviews here

The Durano Plus is like a Marathon Plus but with a lighter tread. M+ is the gold standard for puncture-resistance so I would give the Durano+ a go in 25mm size.
Plus versions are notoriously tight fit on rims so check out the Method.
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Old 10-27-11, 12:49 PM   #14
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The Durano Plus has a very effective puncture protection belt for the kinds of conditions that you describe. It's going to be heavier than the other tires that you've listed, but the rubber compound is probably nicer. If weight is a concern then maybe it's not going to be your choice, but if puncture protection and road feel are important it might be worth considering.

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Old 10-27-11, 01:18 PM   #15
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Michelin Pilot Tracker (OK, I'm kidding, I know it's not one you named.)

You can click here to see the type of protection you have with this tire. It's 5mm. The regular Michelin Tracker gives you 1mm protection.
http://www.michelin.co.uk/bicycle/mi...res-technology

Last edited by hybridbkrdr; 10-27-11 at 07:45 PM.
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Old 10-27-11, 01:18 PM   #16
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guys, thanks for the level of information. as a newbie i have been genuinely suprised at the speed and quality of response. i will definately be keeping an eye on other topics.

sounds like the continentals and the specialized are coming out on top as a uk resident?
interesting thought stepping up to a 25 though. not sure the forks will take a 28? makes total sense aswell in terms of impact absorption

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Old 10-27-11, 01:31 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by simon2106 View Post
problem was, wanted a road bike for weight and looks, and not a cyclocross model. they just looked a little too bulky?
You should definitely check out the Continental Grand Prix 4 Seasons. They're expensive, but they are light, have good puncture protection and roll very nicely. I haven't used the Gator Hardshells, but I did have a pair of non-hardhsell Gatorskins. The GP 4 Seasons have done at least as well as those in terms of puncture protection and the ride is much better.

I'm using 700x28 GP 4 Seasons. I believe that wider tires do slightly better at resisting punctures, assuming you keep the pressure up where it should be. I couldn't say for sure, but I think I've heard people on this board say they used 28's with an Allez.
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Old 10-27-11, 01:48 PM   #18
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As a commuter; I go for as much armor as possible, not wanting to deal with flats, and willing to make compromises.

My SR Sierra Sport has Terry 28-571 tires with PT (made by Panaracer, same PT as their branded tires have); Stop Flats 2 liner and Avenir TR tubes (26 x 1.25-1.75 - the fit in barely).

My World Tourist has on the back an Armadillo All Road (as noted, it is HEAVY, REALLY HEAVY); Slime brand liner (also heavy) and an Avenir TR tube. On the front is a Bell Kevlar, Stop Flats 2 liner and Avenir TR tube. If the Armadillo every wears out (5K miles now); a Bell Kevlar will replace it (weight, cost).

The above are zero flat solutions, to date.

Liners and TR tubes are a lower cost solution that the higher end flat protection tires.

I recommend an decent lighter Kevlar belted tire, liners and TR tubes.

Try your current tires with liners and TR tubes.
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Old 10-27-11, 01:50 PM   #19
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The Panaracer Pasela w/ Kevlar Belt is a truly wonderful tire. I commuted on them for years, racking up over 1,000 miles on streets of Philadelphia. We don't have street cleaning here, and the roads are practically paved with broken glass and bits of metal. I currently have Schwalbe Delta Cruisers. I don't like the performance that much, but they are the only punture-protected tire for 26x 1 3/8 and they are bulletproof.
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Old 10-27-11, 01:51 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wolfwerx View Post
Panaracer Pasella Tour Guards have been awesome tires for me, and I've rolled them through gravel, glass, metal strips, screws, you name it...
Part of my commute (actually, most of my commute) is through industrial areas, including a particularly sketchy area by a factory that make screws and bolts.
I too have had good luck with these, and they are fairly cheap too!
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Old 10-27-11, 01:54 PM   #21
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Check out the Conti 4Seasons. I found them to be just as flat resistant as the GatorSkins, but they have MUCH better wet weather grip and have a nicer ride. The downside is that they wear faster, and like all Conti tires they may have sidewall issues.
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Old 10-27-11, 02:19 PM   #22
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Since nobody else seemed to give them the vote of confidence I feel compelled to say the Bontrager All Weather Hardcase is a fantastic tire. Roll pretty well, composed in the wet, and excellent puncture resistance. Only downside is the stiffness can make getting them on and off the rim a little more annoying but hey, with these tires you will rarely need to repair a flat. Oh yeah...they also last a longer than almost any other tire.
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Old 10-27-11, 03:54 PM   #23
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Schwalbe over 'dillos any day.
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Old 10-27-11, 04:53 PM   #24
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I've been very happy with my Continental Touring Plus and Panaracer Pasela TG's
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Old 10-27-11, 06:10 PM   #25
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Lot of Pasella lovers here. I just got some Vittoria Rondoneurs I'm hoping will perform just as well.
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