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Old 05-13-08, 02:16 AM   #1
Sammyboy
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406 Marathons vs Comets vs Stelvios - durablity/speed

As some of you will know, I'm preparing to a 270 mile round trip in 2 days on my Downtube, and I'm thinking carefully about tyres. It's a LONG ride, so I don't want unneccesary rolling resistance, but then, I'm a big guy, around 245, and I'll also be carrying a weekends worth of clothing etc, so I don't want tyres made of tissue paper.

I have Marathons on a couple of bikes (both 26"), and like them - I've never flatted a Marathon in 100s of miles of riding. I do manage to fairly regularly flat Vittoria Rubinos on road bikes, and cheap 27" tyres on my tourer. This almost always occurs because I lead-arse it through some pothole or bump, rather than because of foreign bodies causing punctures.

I suspect that Stelvios are simply to fragile for such a purpose for someone of my size (remember, this bike also does regular commuting duty, and that's not changing). Marathons I'm certain are tough enough (without needing to be any of the super-duper Marathons), but I'm aware of how much slower they feel than Rubinos on my other bikes. Not awful, and probably better than the Kendas that are on the bike now, but not real fast. All my Marathons claim 65 psi as a max, and that's what UK suppliers list for the 406 version too, but people here are talking about 100 psi? Have they changed? That might well reduce resistance, and on a full suspension bike, I shouldn't have to worry about my arse. Finally, I wonder if Comets are the good in between solution. I've not tried them, but they're reputedly fast, and the 1.5 version might hold enough air to stop me pinch-flatting them. Can I have opinions from those with experience of some or all of these tyres?
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Old 05-13-08, 03:14 AM   #2
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Schwalbe UK's website lists the 1.5" Marathons with a range of 45-100 psi. http://www.schwalbe.co.uk/c2-1073-sc...-marathon.html I've been running mine at 85 or thereabouts with no problem, though I haven't checked the pressure in a while (and I might run the front a bit lower, no suspension on there so a little rough on some surfaces). You should be fine on those.
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Old 05-13-08, 05:10 AM   #3
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You can run 406 marathons at up to 100psi as far as I remember and you'll never get a snake bite on a tyre anywhere near that. I run hard pumped marathons on my TSR, but can't say yet how durable they are because I've not put a lot of miles on the bike. They ride very well I think, but I can't really do a comparison for you. My bike has front and rear suspension and on the TSR they feel silky smooth. However - if they were running on a non-suspension bike they might feel harsh at high pressure. Someone else will know better.
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Old 05-13-08, 05:19 AM   #4
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Well, since my bike is full suspension, we need not worry about how they are with no suspension! I've never pinch-flatted a Marathon even at 60 psi, so I'm sure I'd be safe at 100; it's skinnier tyres I tend to pinch, 23mm Rubinos for instance.
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Old 05-13-08, 06:08 AM   #5
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Sammyboy,
My experience with Stelvios is quite the opposite of everyone else. I weigh 245lbs and put 3,000 plus miles on my stelvios with just a single flat. I don't baby them and tend to lead arse it myself through pot holes. Strangely enough, I got more flats on my primo comets. I don't know how useful my experience is though, since everyone says the opposite.
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Old 05-13-08, 06:31 AM   #6
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Primos take 85 psi and are wide enough not to pinch flat. If you don't come across sharp things, they'll be a good choice (rolling easily). Marathons are slugs in comparison, albeit a bit tougher.
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Old 05-13-08, 07:15 AM   #7
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Sammyboy,

I've found the 406 Comets are good at 80-90 psi, they still have plenty of feel about them and they're quick, I've also used Continental 406 slicks at 110+ psi which seem very fast, but more twitchy. The only Stelvios I've got are 451 size and so far no problems with flats, like so many others say they have,...then again I don't have all the road crud you Londoners have to contend with, all I've got is clean air, open roads and ideal cycling courses at my front door.......
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Old 05-13-08, 09:28 PM   #8
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I use the 1.5 Kevlar Comets on my Downtube, usually running them at 100 psi when I'm road riding. They've been great - comfortable and fast and no flats. I've had them for a couple years with fairly heavy use in the first year.

Back when I got them, the word was that the non-Kevlar version was flat prone, so I'd avoid those (assuming that is still their reputation).
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Old 05-13-08, 11:11 PM   #9
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I've still got the stock Stelvios on my Jetstream. Early on I had several flats, a couple were from spokes poking through, and others were pinch flats. Lessons learned. Now I keep them at 80 p.s.i. or higher depending on the load, and keep the spokes properly tensioned. My weight is - well - let's leave it at we're in the same neighborhood.
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Old 05-14-08, 02:56 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StuAff View Post
Schwalbe UK's website lists the 1.5" Marathons with a range of 45-100 psi...


That's what mine say on the sidewalls. I pump em up to a little over 100 since tire pressure seems to drain off rather quickly.
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Old 05-14-08, 06:21 AM   #11
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I'd go with Kojaks.
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