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Old 07-08-12, 09:10 AM   #1
himespau 
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Schwalbe Marathon Plus: Does it get easier?

Just got done mounting my brand new Marathon Pluses, and, man, I sure hope everything everyone says about their flat resistance is true, because I don't want to have to change those out on the road. Had to break out my tire bead jack (something I'd never actually had to do before) and even then thought I was going to break it on the first tire. Do they "stretch" or get easier to mount with repeated uses? Or am I just a wimp?
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Old 07-08-12, 09:19 AM   #2
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most tires are easier to mount after the initial time. What rims do you have?
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Old 07-08-12, 10:39 AM   #3
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The ticket is to move the tire bead to the center of the rim. Agreed those aren't the easiest tires to install, and at the shop I've found a couple tie wraps to keep the initial area installed in place helps with the rest, but they will go on without adittional tools.
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Old 07-08-12, 11:55 AM   #4
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Yes, it gets much easier after they've been on awhile. I was worried about the same thing, but I had to change a flat due to the valve stem blowing and it was an easy install.
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Old 07-08-12, 12:02 PM   #5
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It'll get much easier after you get tired of the rough tread and switch to another tire.

Seriously, yes, it'll get easier with time.
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Old 07-08-12, 12:23 PM   #6
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I got aluminum tire levers, and found they were MUCH easier to install than with the plastic ones.

ETA: Oh, and I had to really SHOVE the bead down into the rim, or they would just pop out - when I was doing the shoving it felt like I wasn't doing anything but they stayed put.

Last edited by kookaburra1701; 07-08-12 at 01:06 PM.
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Old 07-08-12, 02:13 PM   #7
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NO!! Nothing but frustration. Yes, they were were bomb proof, but.... Last winter, I installed Continental Grand Prix 4 Seasons, with tire liners, and they have been the cats meow. Ride better, install MUCH easier and they have much better wet pavement traction for the win.

Oh, they also are much lighter in this combination. That is all.

Last edited by rubic; 07-08-12 at 02:16 PM.
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Old 07-08-12, 02:37 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by himespau View Post
Just got done mounting my brand new Marathon Pluses, and, man, I sure hope everything everyone says about their flat resistance is true, because I don't want to have to change those out on the road. Had to break out my tire bead jack (something I'd never actually had to do before) and even then thought I was going to break it on the first tire. Do they "stretch" or get easier to mount with repeated uses? Or am I just a wimp?
Nah, these were the hardest tires I've ever mounted.

On the plus side, I only had one flat with them when I used them for commuting, so I never really had to remove them often.


I don't commute anymore (work from home!) so I use thinner folding tires now that are much easier to mount. I now ride where I want rather than where I'm forced to, so flats are a lot less common now anyhow.
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Old 07-08-12, 02:42 PM   #9
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They don't stretch much because they have a wire bead. As has been said, the trick is to ensure the bead is pushed down into the centre of the rim to create the room for manoeuvre you need to get the next section on. There are a couple of videos on YouTube that show how to mount them with your bare hands.

And they very rarely puncture. Between commuting and touring I've put about 10000 miles on a couple of pairs of them with only one puncture.

Last edited by chasm54; 07-08-12 at 02:46 PM.
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Old 07-08-12, 04:10 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Doohickie View Post
It'll get much easier after you get tired of the rough tread and switch to another tire.

Seriously, yes, it'll get easier with time.
Oh, they ride rough? I'd heard they were the niciest riding of the "flat proof" commuter tires. I'm coming from a really cheap slick 26x1.25 tire and when I built new wheels, I figured I'd upgrade the tires (the others had maybe 1500 miles - which isn't bad for a $10 tire) so I went with the 26x1.35 which is slightly wider and can handle more pressure.
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Old 07-08-12, 04:26 PM   #11
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Yeah, they get easier as time goes on. When one finally did flat it was from a 2" self-starting screw removed w/t phillips attachment of my multi-tool. Rear tire. Nothing would've stopped that. 2 slow leaks on the front. One, I think was a co-worker's idea of a joke. Never did find the leak. The other was a pinch flat...my bad. The front tire has over 22,000 commuter/utility miles in 4+ years. Plenty of tread left. Just changed out the rear for the 3d time last month. The previous 2 lasted 10,000 miles each before the 'blue' started to show through. No reason not to expect the same from the new one. 700x28mm.

700x25mm on my fg. It's used a part-time commuter. The 25mms don't last nearly as long as the 28s, but I've yet to flat on my fg in well over 3+ years since I finished the conversion. Just got a new set, but I've yet to mount them as the old ones aren't fully worn, yet.

Afa performance in wet conditions they probably aren't as good as the Supremes, Duranos, Gatorskins, etc, etc. Then again is one really concerned about taking a 90 degree turn @ 20 mph while fully or partly loaded on a wet surface? Didn't think so. They're fine in the rain. The idea of touring, commuting, utility, errand cycling, etc. is to get there and SMPs do that to a higher degree of flat resistance than any other tire on the market. Rolling resistance is overrated in the face on one's 5th flat of the day on an extended tour. Been there. Done that.

Btw, when I did have the aforementioned flat I was able to get the tire back on w/my fingers. So, they do stretch, somewhat.
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Old 07-09-12, 11:54 AM   #12
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When I first installed my SMP it was the toughest tire I'd ever mounted. Used zip-ties to keep the bead in place, multiple tire levers and lots of effort. I recently had to swap them over to another bike, and was able to do it with just my hands. Definitely got easier. I've also never had a flat with them in a few thousand miles.
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Old 07-09-12, 12:02 PM   #13
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I sure hope it does get easier because this morning I realized that I'd mounted the front tire backwards.
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Old 07-09-12, 12:46 PM   #14
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That shouldn't be a problem. Just do what Columbus did, and head west to go east.
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Old 07-09-12, 01:15 PM   #15
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My tire kits include 3 tire levers now, It gets the job done.
I set and pull down, all 3 at once..



Quote:
I realized that I'd mounted the front tire backwards
Regular hub? put it in , remove, and turn the QR skewer around.
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Old 07-09-12, 01:20 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by himespau View Post
Oh, they ride rough? I'd heard they were the niciest riding of the "flat proof" commuter tires. I'm coming from a really cheap slick 26x1.25 tire and when I built new wheels, I figured I'd upgrade the tires (the others had maybe 1500 miles - which isn't bad for a $10 tire) so I went with the 26x1.35 which is slightly wider and can handle more pressure.
No, they don't ride rough. They roll pretty nicely. They aren't the softest ride, the sidewalls are fairly stiff, but I've never thought they were a poor ride.
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Old 07-09-12, 01:20 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
My tire kits include 3 tire levers now, It gets the job done.
I set and pull down, all 3 at once..
I have a hard time picturing this.
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Old 07-09-12, 01:43 PM   #18
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Quote:
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Regular hub? put it in , remove, and turn the QR skewer around.
Yeah, but this is the first wheel I'd ever built and I went to the trouble of getting the hub label visible from the valve hole and the rim label so you can read it from the right side, and this would make the rim backwards and then it wouldn't be perfect. Actually, that's probably the best solution as I don't really care that much about such things.
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Old 07-09-12, 01:54 PM   #19
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No, they don't ride rough. They roll pretty nicely. They aren't the softest ride, the sidewalls are fairly stiff, but I've never thought they were a poor ride.
I found the ride extremely harsh, and very slow. But I never did get even one flat.

My preference is to fix the flats I get with better performing tires, as none of the 'flat-resistant' tires have been a very pleasant ride.
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