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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 02-06-14, 02:45 PM   #1
RubeRad
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So many Marathons!

So last week I noticed my back tire (Conti CountryRide 700x37) was starting to show threads in a few places. (Not a problem, I bought the pair used for $10 and rode over 2000 miles -- and counting for the other one. I figure I got my money's worth). So I move the front to the back, and put on the front a Conti TouringPlus 700x32 I had laying around. But for the longer term, I'm considering my next pair of tires, and from all the fanboys here on BF I was considering some Schwalbe Marathons.

Then I went and looked at the Schwalbe page, and was surprised to find there is no "the" Schwalbe Marathon tire, but there's tons of different tires with the "Marathon" designation, with a very wide range of sizes and tread designs.

What's the bottom-->top of all the various Marathon options? I know I could just sort by price, but what are the benefits of moving up the range in $$ for various models? Here are all the models I found on the schwalbe website, with "from" prices from low to high (which might not reflect what I'm looking for, which is 700x35-50)


31.45 Marathon Racer HS 429
36.65 Marathon HS 420
48.35 Marathon Mondial HS 428 (replaced XR)
52.55 Marathon Plus HS 440
63.05 Marathon Plus MTB (knobby)
63.05 Marathon Plus Tour HS 404
73.55 Marathon Supreme HS 382
73.75 Marathon Almotion
77.75 Marathon Dureme Tandem
84.05 Marathon Winter HS 396 (studded)
89.55 Marathon Deluxe HS 420
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Old 02-06-14, 02:50 PM   #2
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Unless you have to deal with thorny terrain the basic Marathon will resist most things that try to penetrate it and give you a long service life, it is a heavier tyre and a little slower to spin up and I recently swapped the Marathons from my touring bike to Marathon Racers which are lighter, more supple, and as such they ride better and seem to roll out faster.

A Schwalbe tyre I really like is the Hurricane as it too has great puncture resistance and has an excellent rollout and hybrid tread that can take you anywhere... the set on my XC bike have 12,000 km on them and still look great and have never failed me.
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Old 02-06-14, 03:00 PM   #3
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My Marathon XR, ridden alternatively in the front and back in parallel with Conti Touring, lasted only half the time of the typical time for the Conti, 4K vs 8K miles. In addition, its failure mode, when old, was less graceful. Basically it started decomposing into segments, with tube getting though to the outside, making it impossible for me to get home even after patching. Conti just thins and starts catching flats. This made me rethink future purchases of Marathons. In some tests in the past, Schwalbes with similar functionalities as Contis, tended to be slower. However, I do not know whether the latter continues to be true.
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Old 02-06-14, 03:23 PM   #4
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I love my Marathon Supremes, and many like Marathon Plus which are more heavy duty...... and much heavier. My Supremes have been bulletproof...... 700-40, and 700-35
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Old 02-06-14, 04:38 PM   #5
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Unless you have to deal with thorny terrain the basic Marathon will resist most things that try to penetrate it and give you a long service life
"the basic Marathon", is that "Marathon HS 420"? Any idea what "HS 420" means and why that designation is also on the deluxe? Is it the code for the tread pattern?

As far as tread patterns go, I like the swoopy Supreme or the scaly Racer. But that's just to the eye, which probably has no correlation to how they perform on the road.
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Old 02-06-14, 04:47 PM   #6
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Also, what's a Marathon W? The ad copy later says "Plus" but I can't seem to reconcile the image of the tread to any of the plus models on the Schwalbe website.
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Old 02-06-14, 04:51 PM   #7
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Marathon Supremes are my all time favorite commuting tire. Pricey, but great traction, decent rolling resistance and excellent durability. Also they are folding, so not too heavy. If you look around, you can usually find for a good price, such as at BTD.
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Old 02-06-14, 05:21 PM   #8
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Another Supreme fan here. I've picked many bits of FOD out of my Supremes with zero flats. Wet weather traction is the best of any tire I've ridden. They also ride really well and last a decent amount of time. Pricey,but my favorite commuting tires. Just wish they made them in 349x32 and 26x1.5".
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Old 02-07-14, 12:07 AM   #9
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I have a set of Schwalbe Marathons with Greenguard, I'm not sure if that one is even on your list. For not getting punctures they seem to be pretty awesome. Not the fastest feeling tires though.
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Old 02-07-14, 12:15 PM   #10
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Also, what's a Marathon W? The ad copy later says "Plus" but I can't seem to reconcile the image of the tread to any of the plus models on the Schwalbe website.
Nuts! I forgot to bid on that eBay auction last night, some lucky guy scored an as-new PAIR of tires for $17.61 + $12.90 shipping, and his winning bid was sitting there waiting to be sniped for THREE DAYS!
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Old 02-07-14, 12:17 PM   #11
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I have a set of Schwalbe Marathons with Greenguard, I'm not sure if that one is even on your list. For not getting punctures they seem to be pretty awesome. Not the fastest feeling tires though.
Yes, I think that's the same as "36.65 Marathon HS 420", the website shows that model with greenguard.
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Old 02-10-14, 08:59 AM   #12
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I like the 420's a lot.
My + not so much.
Never flatted, great traction but has rather high rolling resistance.

For general riding it will be replaced with a 420.
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Old 02-10-14, 09:56 AM   #13
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I like the 420's a lot.
My + not so much.
Never flatted, great traction but has rather high rolling resistance.

For general riding it will be replaced with a 420.
Would that be the reg'lr 420, or Deluxe?
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Old 02-10-14, 01:16 PM   #14
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Would that be the reg'lr 420, or Deluxe?
I have had 3 HS420's. I ruined one putting a flat spot in it...
Replaced it with a + for the rear, I think the + was overkill.

I was riding by 3 scrap yards on the way to work for a while, and no flats... You can see all sorts of metal and glass that falls off the trucks.
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Old 02-10-14, 03:51 PM   #15
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I have Marathon GreenGuards on my MTB commuter, and they're awfully nice. Dunno how they stack up to other commuting tires, but I have no complaints.
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Old 03-14-14, 04:45 PM   #16
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Dureme is marketed as a "Tandem" tire; but even with "double-carcass" construction it seems pretty light at only 685g for 622-40 (compared to Supreme at 654 for the larger 622-50 (and 1080 for "regular"). I think I'm willing to shell out over $100 for the Supremes, but I"m tempted by the possibility of a nearly-new pair of Duremes for under $40. What do you think, should I go big for Supreme, or would Dureme come close?
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Old 03-14-14, 07:50 PM   #17
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I think the question is do you want them as bullet proof a possible at the expense of weight or something a bit lighter and more supple but still very strong/flat resistant?

If bullet proof then go for the Marathon Plus

If you want a bit lighter and faster then go for the Marathon Supreme.

Don't know about the others.
My $.02
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Old 03-17-14, 03:55 AM   #18
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I like my SMP's, but my bicycle already weighs over 50 lbs so the heavier tires don't make much of a difference. But I've picked bits of broken glass out of them and they've never punctured or flatted in 2+ years. I should probably replace them soon, but they're not even showing any threads yet.
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Old 03-17-14, 09:31 AM   #19
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Handicapped by not walking into a shop and holding the tire in our hands, are we?
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Old 03-17-14, 10:09 AM   #20
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Handicapped by not walking into a shop and holding the tire in our hands, are we?
No not really. Holding a tire in my hands wouldn't give me any extra confidence about how much I would like riding it.

The eBay auction for the like-new pair of 42-622 Duremes went up to $53+12s/h; a very good deal for whoever bought them, but way above the price I had set for not-exactly-what-I-want. I have decided I will splurge on a pair of 29x2 (50-622) Supremes with my tax return. I loved the Vee Rubber V12 I had in that size, the only problem was durability: the rear tire was half worn out in a month and a half, less than 500 miles. So based on everyone else's raving, I expect to love Marathon Supremes for the next five years or so.
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Old 04-04-14, 12:04 PM   #21
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Finally got 'em. Best price I found was here. On my 24mm Velocity Dyad rims the alleged 622-50 supremes actually measure out to just 44mm, which is under spec for a cross-check's tire clearance (45), so they fit easily.
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Old 04-04-14, 05:10 PM   #22
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Schwalbe Marathon Supremes are by far the best tire I've used for commuting. I run the 700x40 and with the kevlar bead they are reasonably light and easy to manage when fixing a flat. Rated to 85psi I regularly run mine at 100psi and have gotten 2 flats in six months. Living in SF where the streets are pretty beat up and with a construction site at every corner, these things roll right through it all. Good choice and good luck!
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Old 04-04-14, 06:52 PM   #23
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...easy to manage when fixing a flat.
Yes, I was afraid from the horror stories that I would have a hard time mounting them, but they went on with fingers only no problem. And when I had to take one off beacuse I mounted it it backwards, that was also quite easy. Maybe because I've got x50, or maybe the horror stories are for some other flavor of the Marathon.

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Rated to 85psi I regularly run mine at 100psi and have gotten 2 flats in six months
Goodness! What's the point of riding 40mm rubber if you're still going to pump it up to 100? Maybe if you dropped it to 60-70 you'd stop getting flats altogether!
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Old 04-04-14, 07:05 PM   #24
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I run mine at 92PSI, because that's where they roll the best for me.
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Old 04-04-14, 07:13 PM   #25
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I run my 700x35s at 70-75 psi, and they are like butter. 26x2.0s at around 60 psi is pure awesomeness.
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