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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 10-02-13, 06:52 PM   #26
LiteraryChic
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My brain hurts!!!
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Old 10-02-13, 07:07 PM   #27
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Check out the Winter Cycling forum here. I think that there is a sticky where Sixty-fiver gives tips on doing some DIY studded tires.
Thanks!
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Old 10-02-13, 07:10 PM   #28
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You could get away with just one studded tire on the front,if cost is that much of an issue. Remember,you only run studs in the snow,so you're not going to wear through them as often as regular tires. My studded tires are several years old.

When I first started commuting,it was winter,and my first few snow rides were on regular tires. Studs/knobbies help alot,but regular tires are doable as long as you're careful. It would also help to run Kool Stop Salmon pads on at least your front brakes.



I wouldn't recommend this. First,if you get a flat,you have to cut all those zip ties to remove the tire. Second,plastic zip ties aren't going to come anywhere close to steel or carbide studs in traction.
Oh, I didn' t even think about that! Okay, on to the next idea.
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Old 10-02-13, 07:19 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by chaadster View Post
Literarychic,

What type of tread pattern do your tires have now? You may not need a winter-specific tire at all, and certainly studded tires would be overkill for all but 2% of the riding conditions we see around here, and have significant penalties for the other 98%. I'd probably advise against them, in fact.

Riding in snowy conditions is not that hard-- and we scarcely get snow anymore-- but since we use salt so heavily anyway, the roads are usually clear within hours of a snowfall, and mostly just slushy. Most of the winter, the roads are dry. You may encounter icy conditions on neighborhood streets for a day or two after a snow, but generally the treacherous spots are few. A little practice, good technique, and little bit of tread will get you through some frightful looking conditions pretty easily; the inexperienced are quite surprised by what cyclists seem to ride through, but the reality is that it's just not as difficult as they think it would be.

I've had great success with cyclocross tires for Ann Arbor winters, and am pretty delighted with Kenda Kwicks in particular, now on my second set and probably 5th winter with those tires. I wouldn't necessarily recommend them for you-- a little more tread would probably give a little more sure-footedness in the worst conditions-- but I mention them to underscore the fact that one just doesn't need a big, heavy, gnarly tire to ride the winter. In a winter tire, I prioritize fast rolling in the dry, and low weight (I don't want to strain when I'm hoisting the bike to hang it in the garage; I've got enough junk on my bike already!) as much as I do traction.

The short of it is, having ridden virtually every winter in Ann Arbor since '87-- I had a five year interlude while at MSU-- it's pretty easy to get around town on the roads here, and even the sidewalks, particularly around campus and on designated bike route sidewalks, are clear the bulk of the time and don't really require anything too particular in the tire department. A little tread'll do ya!

EDIT: Oh yeah, if you can afford a second wheel set, that really changes the equations a bit, and reduces the downsides to selecting winter tires for the worst conditions.
Thanks chaadster. I do not have much clearance, and just thought that if I have end up buying a second set of rims & snow tires, I will either have to buy a second set of my Monkey Lights and my Reelights, and that would be about $190 all together, not including the cost for the rims and tires, so I am going to stick with either gettting a front tire for now, or seeing how I do with the one's that Lola has. So, for cost effectiveness, I will just stick with what I've got for now, and probably for a little while longer (even if I end up in Candada due to cost factors.

Thanks!
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Old 01-08-14, 02:17 AM   #30
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Hi,
Thanks for the interesting discussion that shines a light on tire size.
I'm currently using Conti Touring tires with a flat bead and a grooved (side?) Size 700x32. My rims are WTB 22?, Tiagra hubs, that came stock when I bought the bike in 2007.

I'm interested in exploring the idea, or buying a new set of wheels, so I can ride my Volpe (cycle cross) bike on dirt roads that can be slippery when wet. I'm interested in exploring some tea field farmer roads. My idea is to have a second set of wheels I can simply swap out for riding off road in a size like 700x38.

If it matters: My brakes are Cane Creek cantilever. My STI shifters are Tiagra triple with front crank sizes 28,38,48.

What are your thoughts on this? Is it better to buy a mountain bike for this purpose? (I doubt I will do any single track here.)
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Old 01-08-14, 09:04 AM   #31
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Originally Posted by meyers66 View Post
Hi,
Thanks for the interesting discussion that shines a light on tire size.
I'm currently using Conti Touring tires with a flat bead and a grooved (side?) Size 700x32. My rims are WTB 22?, Tiagra hubs, that came stock when I bought the bike in 2007.

I'm interested in exploring the idea, or buying a new set of wheels, so I can ride my Volpe (cycle cross) bike on dirt roads that can be slippery when wet. I'm interested in exploring some tea field farmer roads. My idea is to have a second set of wheels I can simply swap out for riding off road in a size like 700x38.

If it matters: My brakes are Cane Creek cantilever. My STI shifters are Tiagra triple with front crank sizes 28,38,48.

What are your thoughts on this? Is it better to buy a mountain bike for this purpose? (I doubt I will do any single track here.)
If someone can drive a truck on it, you can ride a cyclocross bike on it. Having an extra set of wheels is great, but make sure you take the following into account:
1. You need wheels, tires, tubes, rim strips, cassette, and skewers to be the most convenient. The cost of everything can add up.
2. Make sure that your "off-road" tires clear everything - fenders, seat stays, chain stays, and fork. This should not be a big problem for the Volpe. You should have room for at least 35mm without fenders, and surely 28mm with fenders.
3. Try and get a rid width near what you have now, or you will have to make brake and/or pad adjustments when you swap wheels.

Plan correctly, and swapping wheels will be a 90 second affair.
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Old 01-08-14, 09:11 AM   #32
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learn ISO 5775 measurements as it makes everything easier.

622 (ISO) is 700c (French) and 28 Zoll (German)

23-622 is what I ride on my FGSS
57-559 is what I ride on my MTB

once you know those, you can communicate with everyone and never make a mistake as they're always stamped directly on the tire.
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Old 01-08-14, 11:12 AM   #33
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Originally Posted by jrickards View Post
My 700Cx35 Schwalbe Marathon has an ERTO of 37-622 which suggests that the 35mm tire (700Cx35) is actually 37mm tall (ERTO 37-622) which is apparent when you look at the tire because it has a slight aero-shape whereas my Michelin Pilot Sport (700Cx32) appears round and the ERTO bears it out, 32-622.
I ran into that, trying to fit 700x37 Marathons on an old Raleigh frame...they're a very tall (in comparison to width) tire.
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Old 01-08-14, 11:28 AM   #34
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meyers66, it depends on your riding. I also happen to have a Bianchi Volpe. I have 32mm tires on it and also fenders. I haven't tested to see what width I can put on, but I suspect I could put on at least 35mm tires while keeping the fenders. With the fenders off, I could probably put even wider tires. My Volpe is from the mid 90's, so the geometry has probably changed a bit, but not necessarily the tire width tolerance.

Changing your wheels makes things convenient, but I'm pretty adept at changing tires, and I wouldn't bother with that expense. I'd prefer to get another bike. It's more fun.

I don't have an off road bike. One of these days, I'll get around to it. In the fall, I took a long trail ride with a bunch of guys. Some had road bikes, and some had off road bikes. All of them had wider tires than I did. I guess that means I'm OK with off road riding with a road bike and road tires. I could have done it with narrower tires, but I wouldn't have wanted to. This was on the Old Croton Aqueduct trail in NY state.
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