Cycling and bicycle discussion forums. 
   Click here to join our community Log in to access your Control Panel  


Go Back   > >

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.

User Tag List

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 10-31-11, 01:13 AM   #1
Isotonic
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Bikes:
Posts: 29
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Road softening tires for Trek 1200

I have a 2003 Trek 1200 with a flat bar. It is an aluminum frame with a carbon fork. I am trying to make it more comfortable for commuting. The problem with the Trek is that it doesn't have much extra space for a larger tire. It has a 700x25 now and looks like it might accommodate a 28, or maybe a 32, but I'm not sure. I am looking for tires that will soften the ride. Has anyone had any success doing this with a Trek 1200? Any other ideas for reducing road chatter with long commutes? Modifications? Thanks!
Isotonic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-31-11, 06:24 AM   #2
Schwinnrider
Mirror slap survivor
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Sunny Florida
Bikes: Gunnar Sport, Surly Pacer, Access MTB, Ibex Corrida, one day a Simple City
Posts: 1,297
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Well, the best way for you to achieve some shock absorbtion will be to put the fattest tire you can fit. I would imagine if it will handle a 700x25 it will handle a 28. Most will, unless they're race bikes with super tight clearances. The 32 will probably be a tough fit. Ask your bike shop.

I feel for you. Perhaps you should keep your eye out for a nice steel framed touring or cross bike. Maybe even a nice old steel rigid MTB.
Schwinnrider is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-31-11, 06:42 AM   #3
Trakhak
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Baltimore, MD
Bikes:
Posts: 1,008
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 19 Post(s)
Depending on your weight and the weight of the stuff you carry while commuting, you should be able to run 700x25 tires at around 80 or 85 psi. 700x28 might allow 70 to 75 psi. The Trek 1200 has a fairly short wheelbase; any bike with a longer wheelbase and wider tires will seem more comfortable, regardless of frame material.
Trakhak is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-31-11, 06:42 AM   #4
mikeybikes
Senior Member
 
mikeybikes's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Edgewater, CO
Bikes: Tons
Posts: 3,214
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Get a fatter tire so you can run it at a lower pressure. That will help with the road chatter more than anything. If you can fit 32s, go for it.
mikeybikes is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-31-11, 08:48 AM   #5
Isotonic
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Bikes:
Posts: 29
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Thanks for the suggestions. Are the any particular tire models recommended. Is it true that some tires are wider than tall, and might fit in the space better?
Isotonic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-31-11, 08:50 AM   #6
canyoneagle
Senior Member
 
canyoneagle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Palisade, CO
Bikes: Singular Gryphon fully rigid 29er multi-use. Nuvinci N360 IGH
Posts: 4,236
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
the Panaracer Pasela TG (TourGuard) offers a really plush ride.
canyoneagle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-31-11, 09:08 AM   #7
modernjess
ride for a change
 
modernjess's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Minneapolis, MN
Bikes: Surly Cross-check & Moonlander, Pivot Mach 429, Ted Wojcik Sof-Trac, Ridley Orion. Santa Cruz Stigmata
Posts: 2,225
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I agree with the tire advice above. Aluminum frames are pretty unforgiving, You could also consider a brooks sprung saddle, like a flyer or similar. If you have the flat bars you are more in the upright position already than drops would be on the 1200, The springs in the seat dampen the little bumps.
modernjess is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-31-11, 10:22 AM   #8
pityr
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: PDX
Bikes: Trek 1200, Kona Honky Inc, PX Stealth
Posts: 641
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I have a 1200 and I have run 28s under fenders on it before. I used to run on Bonty Hardcases but they can be pretty stiff. What kind of wheels do you have? Stock alexrim? I like to run tires like a Krylion or GP4k but they aren't necessarily commuter tires.

Last edited by pityr; 10-31-11 at 10:28 AM.
pityr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-31-11, 07:51 PM   #9
Isotonic
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Bikes:
Posts: 29
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I have the stock wheels which are Matrix Aurora if Bikapedia is correct. I am also considering a soft seat, naybe the Brooks or a Terry. Thanks for the suggestion Canyon eagle.
Isotonic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-31-11, 08:15 PM   #10
fotooutdoors
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Wisconsin
Bikes: Salsa Fargo, One-One Inbred 29er, Blue Norcross
Posts: 358
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
One other thing to take note of; you can often fit a larger tire in the front than the rear. So, you can probably fit a 32 in the front even if the rear only takes a 28.
fotooutdoors is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-31-11, 08:23 PM   #11
stonefree
Icantre Member
 
stonefree's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: the Bayou City perpetually under construction
Bikes: 2001 DBR Axis TT, 1998 Trek 5500 OCLV, 1993 Trek 1100, 1971 Raleigh Grand Prix, 1972 Gitane Attic Beater
Posts: 384
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I've got the Trek 1100 (no fenders, but tight clearance anyway) and have bought some 28's for it but haven't put them on yet. The ultrastiff ride I compensated for with a softer saddle, but then I'm pretty light anyway and usually stand slightly over anticipated bumps. It's good to have confirmation that my measuring was accurate and that 32's would probably be too large.
stonefree is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-31-11, 08:33 PM   #12
Dstrek5200
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Bikes:
Posts: 10
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
What tire pressure are you running and what is your weight? The biggest thing I have learned over the past 30 yrs is wheels with 32 spokes, like OP's and 25mm tires at 80 psi front and 90 rear gives me the most comfortable ride yet.
Dstrek5200 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-01-11, 10:11 AM   #13
formicaman
Senior Member
 
formicaman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Bikes:
Posts: 332
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Not sure what will fit your frame, but tire quality is a big part too. Panaracer tires have always felt the most cushioned to me, even to the point that I thought they felt too cushy. Soma has a panaracer tire developed for them that is like butter in the 32 size. Randoneur tires are often good in this way.
formicaman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-01-11, 10:41 AM   #14
fietsbob 
coprolite
 
fietsbob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: NW,Oregon Coast
Bikes: 7
Posts: 19,670
Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 451 Post(s)
Quote:
Any other ideas for reducing road chatter with long commutes? Modifications?
double wrap bars, add gel pouches under the tape.
suspension seat post. and or sprung saddle..

rebuild the wheels around PanTour hubs, which include internal suspension.

NB; what makes for a more supple casing , also reduces its durability and puncture resistance.

so you have to choose, trade, a bit more comfort, for mid commute puncture repairs.
fietsbob is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-03-11, 12:20 AM   #15
Isotonic
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Bikes:
Posts: 29
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
You guys are really helping me get my head around the problem. The plan is to increase tire size to maximum. Probably 28cm on the front wheel and 32 on the back. I have looked into the Panaracer and Soma tires but have not found a local vendor for them. One favorite LBS has suggested that I go with a tire that has better protection from flats. He says that Gator Skins have a very nice ride to them and they also have a great rep for thorn/glass resistance. What do you guys think? I am also looking for a cushier seat, but understand that the right seat will be a matter of trial and error. Suggestions are welcome anyway. Thanks all!
Isotonic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-03-11, 05:02 AM   #16
Ridefreemc 
Senior Member
 
Ridefreemc's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Western Florida
Bikes: 2015 Bike Friday New World Tourist, 2013 Velo Orange Campeur, 2011 Mezzo D9 (x3), 2004 Marin Mount Vision Pro, 2014 Xtracycle Electric, 2014 Surly Big Dummy electric assist
Posts: 1,334
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Wider is better of course, but also consider the pressures you want to run. I typically go 10 pounds or so (depending on the tire) lower in the front because there is less weight up there than on the back. For more information on tire width and pressure you can go to rivebike.com. They take a sensible approach to it. (i could not get to the right page on their site today otherwise I would have typed that in, but there is other good info there as well)
__________________
On the move!
2015 Bike Friday New World Tourist, 2013 Velo Orange Campeur, 2011 Mezzo D9 (x3), 2004 Marin Mount Vision Pro, 2014 Xtracycle Electric, 2014 Surly Big Dummy electric assist
Ridefreemc is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-03-11, 05:46 AM   #17
curbtender
Senior Member
 
curbtender's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: SF Bay Area, East bay
Bikes: Marinoni, Kestral 200 2002 Trek 5200, KHS Flite, Koga Miyata, Schwinn Spitfire 5, Schwinn Speedster, Mondia Special, Univega Alpina
Posts: 3,874
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 20 Post(s)
Gatorskins are pretty nice. I like how they ride.
curbtender is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-03-11, 06:26 AM   #18
scroca 
commuter and barbarian
 
scroca's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Potomac, MT, USA
Bikes:
Posts: 2,499
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Michelin makes a fairly low pressure tire, Dynamic (iirc). I believe mine are 87 psi max and they are 700 x 28. You can get 700 x 25 and run 73 to 102 psi.
__________________
2015 Seven Cycles Expat SL
2011 Felt Q620
2010 Motobecane Jury fixed gear
2010 Surly LHT
1992 Trek 1200
1977 Schwinn Le Tour II fixed gear
scroca is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-03-11, 11:36 AM   #19
Isotonic
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Bikes:
Posts: 29
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
The Rivbike site is very interesting and very sensible, thanks. I will check out the Michelin tire. I probably need to look at the recommended pressure for the Gatorskin.
Isotonic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-03-11, 12:10 PM   #20
Seattle Forrest
Senior Member
 
Seattle Forrest's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Seattle, WA
Bikes:
Posts: 13,713
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 321 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Isotonic View Post
Thanks for the suggestions. Are the any particular tire models recommended.
If you're limited to 25s, Grand Prix 4000 have great ride quality. They're expensive, but you can get them for about half what LBS charges if you buy them from a store in the UK, like Ribble. They're not typically a commuting tire, but, if you can't mount something wider, these feel like they smooth out the pavement a bit. They also grip very well.

Quote:
Originally Posted by modernjess View Post
I agree with the tire advice above. Aluminum frames are pretty unforgiving, You could also consider a brooks sprung saddle, like a flyer or similar. If you have the flat bars you are more in the upright position already than drops would be on the 1200, The springs in the seat dampen the little bumps.
We understand that you're a Brooks fanboy, but the guy asked about tires, not overpriced saddles that stain your pants when they get wet. Come on, dude, let's try to stay on topic.
Seattle Forrest is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-03-11, 12:30 PM   #21
canyoneagle
Senior Member
 
canyoneagle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Palisade, CO
Bikes: Singular Gryphon fully rigid 29er multi-use. Nuvinci N360 IGH
Posts: 4,236
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
If you're limited to 25s, Grand Prix 4000 have great ride quality.
+1
For added puncture resistance, the 4-seasons version of this tire is an excellent mix between performance/ride quality and commuting practicality.

Also, FWIW, the OP had asked about saddles, so the other reply was on topic......

Last edited by canyoneagle; 11-03-11 at 01:02 PM.
canyoneagle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-03-11, 12:39 PM   #22
soho2009
commuter
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Bikes:
Posts: 111
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Some alternatives to new tires:

1. double thick tubes (also marketed as thorn proof) - will smooth out the ride especially at at lower than max psi.

2. saddles like fizik gobi which put some springs in the saddle while maintaining power transfer efficiency.
soho2009 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-03-11, 12:40 PM   #23
ThermionicScott 
Gratuitous glib and snark
 
ThermionicScott's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: CID
Bikes: 1991 Bianchi Eros, 1964 Armstrong, 1988 Diamondback Ascent, 1988 Bianchi Premio, 1987 Bianchi Sport SX, 1980s Raleigh mixte (hers)
Posts: 13,417
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 134 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Isotonic View Post
You guys are really helping me get my head around the problem. The plan is to increase tire size to maximum. Probably 28cm on the front wheel and 32 on the back. I have looked into the Panaracer and Soma tires but have not found a local vendor for them. One favorite LBS has suggested that I go with a tire that has better protection from flats. He says that Gator Skins have a very nice ride to them and they also have a great rep for thorn/glass resistance. What do you guys think? I am also looking for a cushier seat, but understand that the right seat will be a matter of trial and error. Suggestions are welcome anyway. Thanks all!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
We understand that you're a Brooks fanboy, but the guy asked about tires, not overpriced saddles that stain your pants when they get wet. Come on, dude, let's try to stay on topic.
Don't be a troll.
__________________
Quote:
Originally Posted by chandltp View Post
There's no such thing as too far.. just lack of time
RUSA #7498
ThermionicScott is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-03-11, 12:40 PM   #24
tjspiel
Senior Member
 
tjspiel's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Minneapolis
Bikes:
Posts: 8,050
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 12 Post(s)
Tires with a higher thread count (TPI) offer a better ride but they're more expensive and sometimes not as durable.

Many people have mentioned tire pressure. I think we are often under the mistaken impression that the most efficient pressure is the max. That is not the case. It all depends on weight. You can often get by with a lower pressure that will not only improve the comfort of your ride, but make the rolling a little easier too.

Somewhere on Sheldon Brown's site there's a chart that lists the optimum pressure for the load on a given tire.
tjspiel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-15-11, 01:50 AM   #25
Isotonic
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Bikes:
Posts: 29
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Well, based on a lot of research, your fine advice and many good reviews, I decided to see if 32mm Continental Contact tires would fit. I figured I might get them on the back if not the front. Turns out they do fit. The bike is still at the tech's shop, but I will be picking up soon. The Contacts have a reputation for a comfortable ride and they are designed for lower pressure. I will report my findings.
Isotonic is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 01:07 AM.