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Old 03-21-11, 12:33 PM   #1
GLA
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Tyres for long distance riding (406)

The forum gave me some great input into selecting a bike for long distance riding. Audax/Brevets/Randonnees etc, ultimately for riding Paris Brest Paris.

In that thread there was discussion about tyres. I've tried the Comets (1.35) that came on the bike for a few shorter rides and Scorchers (1.5) for a 200km and a 365km

I did not mind the Scorchers but they were very difficult to get even on the rim and therefore not totally smooth on the rolling - a bit out of round. More importantly, they were not very good in the wet. I've ridden slicks for many years without issue in the wet, but these were positively slippery.

Any comments about good, fast tyres that are good in the wet as well. I was thinking of trying the Kojaks. Worth a try? (also trying to avoid having a supply of a couple of every type of tyre at home during the experimentation )

Should I go back to the Comets I have? - standard not the Kevlar

Any comments would be appreciated

thanks
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Old 03-21-11, 12:38 PM   #2
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Kojaks.
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Old 03-21-11, 01:18 PM   #3
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Kojaks.
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Old 03-21-11, 02:16 PM   #4
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The Kojaks are not that robust; my own front tyre is showing more cuts and damage than I am used to seeing on the front. This sentiment is echoed by some on the Moulton group. However, I am likely to get another set for my Birdy for commuting.

I can't really say about wet riding; I am so careful in the wet that I don't stress the tyre grip so probably don't go close to the tyre slip-out point. I have heard previously that the Scorchers are slippery in the wet from only one other person in the past. I wonder if this is due to newness? IE ride the new skin off it first before judging. The new skin might contain release agent for example.

For tyre bead seating, try talcing the tyre beads well before inflating, and give them a roll/twist after the first few strokes to try and get the beads into the rim hooks. You could also inflate past the maximum (and then let them down again immediately) to seat the beads. I don't know how close one would get to wrecking the carcass doing this - presumably the carcass threads are designed to take tension well above the tyre maximum without breaking.

I don't think there is anything wrong with the Primo Comets. Perhaps more robust than the Kojaks, they roll quite well enough.

I am currently trying out Schwalbe Duranos on one of my bikes; these are good too.
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Old 03-21-11, 03:10 PM   #5
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So, if your Ticker is correct...

You have a lot of time, and a lot of miles, before you actually make it to PBP. I highly recommend that you pick up a selection of tires and try as many of them as possible on your long rides.

I also recommend you have all your gear sorted at least two weeks prior to PBP. Last-minute changes will likely distract you and complicate things.

You may also want to peruse the following article for more ideas on equipment: http://www.bikequarterly.com/BQPBPEquipsurvey.pdf
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Old 03-21-11, 04:25 PM   #6
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I did not mind the Scorchers but they were very difficult to get even on the rim and therefore not totally smooth on the rolling - a bit out of round. More importantly, they were not very good in the wet. I've ridden slicks for many years without issue in the wet, but these were positively slippery.


GS Scorchers are my go to rain tire. I've never had a single slip in many years. I just did an unintended wet/pavement/mud/dirt/gravel tour with my 406 Scorchers and I was impressed with how much traction I got on all surfaces. They rocked. I've also never had any issue getting them mounted evenly.

It's like you got some tires incorrectly marked as Scorchers!! Maybe you got a bunk set...?

I'm basing my observations on 4 different sets of Scorchers I personally have bought as well as reports for a number of other Scorcher-itos who have dropped me a line on my blog.

How much do you weigh? What pressure were you running them at front and rear?
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Old 03-21-11, 07:24 PM   #7
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I also like Kojaks, they have great traction in dry conditions, and I haven't yet had any scary experiences riding them in the wet. I like them mainly for their very low rolling resistance, they made my bike noticeably faster. They were a bit tough to fit, but I see this as a positive thing, as it makes it harder for the bead to low off the rim. I used to be a bike mechanic, and I used to curse a lot at tires, but my thumbs became really strong over time, and some of that strength seems to have remained.

I have had no problems with cuts or damage to the Kojaks, I've put several hundred kilometers on them around Tokyo on city streets.

I will next try the Panaracer Minits tires, these are 35 grams lighter than the Kojaks, and seem to be very high quality.
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Old 03-21-11, 08:41 PM   #8
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I will next try the Panaracer Minits tires, these are 35 grams lighter than the Kojaks, and seem to be very high quality.
let me know how it is. apparently, the panaracer is even cheaper.
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Old 03-21-11, 10:34 PM   #9
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I wish that were the case here, in Japan the Panaracer tires are 500 yen more than the Kojaks... but that's for the 18" size which fits my Birdy.
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Old 03-22-11, 12:07 AM   #10
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I wish that were the case here, in Japan the Panaracer tires are 500 yen more than the Kojaks... but that's for the 18" size which fits my Birdy.
regular panaracer 20x1.25 is about $22 here. if this is better than the kojaks then i need to get me some.
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Old 03-22-11, 12:14 AM   #11
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I rocked Comet Primos on my folder for all of last summer and logged 1000's upon 1000's of miles and it was a wet summer... had no issue running the bike up to almost 50kmh when things were drenched, spent entire days riding in the rain and wind, and only had one flat caused by some radial wire.

Will run them again this season as they look fine, have no cuts or damage and they are a stinking fast tyre.
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Old 03-22-11, 12:50 AM   #12
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I rocked Comet Primos on my folder for all of last summer
is it regular comets or kevlar ?
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Old 03-22-11, 12:42 PM   #13
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GS Scorchers are my go to rain tire. I've never had a single slip in many years. I just did an unintended wet/pavement/mud/dirt/gravel tour with my 406 Scorchers and I was impressed with how much traction I got on all surfaces. They rocked. I've also never had any issue getting them mounted evenly.

It's like you got some tires incorrectly marked as Scorchers!! Maybe you got a bunk set...?

I'm basing my observations on 4 different sets of Scorchers I personally have bought as well as reports for a number of other Scorcher-itos who have dropped me a line on my blog.

How much do you weigh? What pressure were you running them at front and rear?
Vik, I weight 75kgs which I think is about 165lbs and I pumped the front up to 80psi and the back to 85.

I believe them to be original Scorchers as I purchased them from my LBS who is very well known to me. I also have not had any slips in the wet on other tyres for years but on the weekend I had three on the Scorchers. Only one was major, but they were enough to put a fright into me an take away confidence. Not a good thing on a long ride.

One of the reasons I started with the Scorchers as the first tyre to try was the positive feedback from you and others. Very puzzling. Although they were new, they still had a couple of hundred kms on them before this weekend ride. Very puzzling.
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Old 03-22-11, 01:15 PM   #14
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is it regular comets or kevlar ?
Regular... will replace them with Kevlars when they need it.
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Old 03-22-11, 03:33 PM   #15
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I run kevlar Comet Primos, Schwalbe Marathons and 100psi Kenda Kwests on different bikes and like them all.
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Old 03-22-11, 05:57 PM   #16
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I used to use Michelin diablo's, they are great on good tarmac and very cheap. As soon as I started going longer distances on country lanes, I found that they lose traction on gravel and get damaged and bulge when they encounter pot holes. I now use schwalbe marathons, they are more durable and have better traction on poorer surfaces.
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Old 03-22-11, 08:15 PM   #17
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Was looking for 406 tires in 1.5 width, found Schwalbe Marathons in that size, stopped looking...

I've loved riding the 700c and 27" versions.

Hubs are ready, tires and spokes should be in thus week, Velocity Aeroheat rims coming in at the end of the month.
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Old 03-22-11, 08:28 PM   #18
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I run kevlar Comet Primos, Schwalbe Marathons and 100psi Kenda Kwests on different bikes and like them all.
I like the Comets and Marathons (would use these for long tours) but have less love for the Kendas as they just feel slow.

Ran Marathons on the P20 but like the little extra speed one gets out of the Comets.
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Old 03-23-11, 03:49 AM   #19
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So, if your Ticker is correct...

You have a lot of time, and a lot of miles....<snip>

You may also want to peruse the following article for more ideas on equipment: http://www.bikequarterly.com/BQPBPEquipsurvey.pdf
Yes my Ticker is correct and hopefully my 'ticker' is good for lots of time and miles...

Thanks for the link Bacciagalupe, interesting reading
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Old 03-23-11, 07:58 AM   #20
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I like the sipremes more qand more... yes they are extremely expensive to say at least.... but they seem to be rolling as fast as a durano, almost as much comfort as a big apple , and they stick to the road like kojaks.... all while the wear is almost not visible....

its almost impossible what Schwalbe created there, hence most likely the outrageous pricetag ?

I wouldnt suggest the tire for every user, but if you plan to do such a great long ride with all that planning which goes into it, the time, the money you will spend, etc etc than the price of the tire will be only a small portion of the whole

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Old 03-23-11, 10:34 AM   #21
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Personally I've never found wet conditions to be particularly hazardous because the reduced speed and visibility simply don't give many opportunities for hard cornering.

I ride exclusively on well paved (but not necessarily well maintained...huge potholes ) roads and every time I've lost traction it's been due to either:
1. Sleet.
2. Dry sand/gravel...particularly this time of year as the melting snow leaves behind pieces of road dug up by the plows along with the sand they sprinkle over the ice.

I also detest a tire that's difficult to get on/off the rim (flats are inconvenient enough as is) and I much prefer a tire at least 1.5" wide to safely ride over big cracks (not all the holes are shaped like pots).

I recently tried the Intense brand Micro Knobby (also MK2) tire:

and liked them so much that I stocked up on 5 of them (on sale $10 each).

They're fast, light, cheap, and available in a variety of widths (according to Sheldon Brown, BMXers have a few things to teach roadies about tire width and traction...maybe you just need a wider front tire). The folding beads are also easy to get on/off rims without tools and flat resistance actually seems pretty good (with a couple hundred flat-free miles in wet conditions without a tire liner...IME most tires flat within 10 miles under such conditions). Don't let the knob pattern deceive you...it's so fine that they're really more like slicks with a checkerboard tread pattern than actual knobby tires.

One thing I can't speak about yet is the wear resistance...which I'm surprised the OP didn't mention as a requirement for "long distance riding". But at $10 each I'd still be happy with the Micro Knobbys even if they only lasted a season.

Schwalbes are also excellent (albeit expensive) and the Panaracer MiniTS look good (although I'm not much interested in the Primo Comets because the wire beads are heavier and more difficult for changing = lose/lose), but I've become somewhat disillusioned with the "slicker is always better" for road riding philosophy. I mean, in theory, sure a slick tire offers the most traction on a smooth road, but in the real world I think loss of traction is usually caused by a breakdown of that theoretical ideal than actual rubber slipping...but I guess if the PBP committee has carefully selected well groomed routes for you to ride on then you might not have to worry about it.
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Old 03-23-11, 12:46 PM   #22
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<snip>
One thing I can't speak about yet is the wear resistance...which I'm surprised the OP didn't mention as a requirement for "long distance riding".
Important, but not everything. Ride quality and handling are more important to me, although they do have to get more than 1200kms!

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...but I guess if the PBP committee has carefully selected well groomed routes for you to ride on then you might not have to worry about it.
I have put in this request, along with tail winds and fine weather. I hope that it does not get lost in translation
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Old 03-23-11, 01:37 PM   #23
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Personally I've never found wet conditions to be particularly hazardous because the reduced speed and visibility simply don't give many opportunities for hard cornering.

I ride exclusively on well paved (but not necessarily well maintained...huge potholes ) roads and every time I've lost traction it's been due to either:
1. Sleet.
2. Dry sand/gravel...particularly this time of year as the melting snow leaves behind pieces of road dug up by the plows along with the sand they sprinkle over the ice.

I also detest a tire that's difficult to get on/off the rim (flats are inconvenient enough as is) and I much prefer a tire at least 1.5" wide to safely ride over big cracks (not all the holes are shaped like pots).

I recently tried the Intense brand Micro Knobby (also MK2) tire:

and liked them so much that I stocked up on 5 of them (on sale $10 each).

They're fast, light, cheap, and available in a variety of widths (according to Sheldon Brown, BMXers have a few things to teach roadies about tire width and traction...maybe you just need a wider front tire). The folding beads are also easy to get on/off rims without tools and flat resistance actually seems pretty good (with a couple hundred flat-free miles in wet conditions without a tire liner...IME most tires flat within 10 miles under such conditions). Don't let the knob pattern deceive you...it's so fine that they're really more like slicks with a checkerboard tread pattern than actual knobby tires.

One thing I can't speak about yet is the wear resistance...which I'm surprised the OP didn't mention as a requirement for "long distance riding". But at $10 each I'd still be happy with the Micro Knobbys even if they only lasted a season.

Schwalbes are also excellent (albeit expensive) and the Panaracer MiniTS look good (although I'm not much interested in the Primo Comets because the wire beads are heavier and more difficult for changing = lose/lose), but I've become somewhat disillusioned with the "slicker is always better" for road riding philosophy. I mean, in theory, sure a slick tire offers the most traction on a smooth road, but in the real world I think loss of traction is usually caused by a breakdown of that theoretical ideal than actual rubber slipping...but I guess if the PBP committee has carefully selected well groomed routes for you to ride on then you might not have to worry about it.
Where were these on sale for that price?
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Old 03-23-11, 02:54 PM   #24
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I have put in this request, along with tail winds and fine weather. I hope that it does not get lost in translation
I understand that they've changed the route before to avoid motor traffic and surely such a big event likewise causes motor traffic to avoid the route. I wouldn't be at all surprised if the local municipalities did an extra fine job street sweeping before the big event...they wouldn't want to lose out on the money spent by all the spectators/tourists.

Contrast with a utility cyclist like myself who often faces the possibility of sliding underneath an 18 wheeler if losing tire traction while accelerating hard out of a 90 degree turn at a red light. If all I had at stake was a few scrapes from falling or a bruised ego from dropping out of the race then I'd probably stay with slicks.

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Where were these on sale for that price?
Click the picture.
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Old 03-23-11, 03:17 PM   #25
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I understand that they've changed the route before to avoid motor traffic and surely such a big event likewise causes motor traffic to avoid the route. I wouldn't be at all surprised if the local municipalities did an extra fine job street sweeping before the big event...they wouldn't want to lose out on the money spent by all the spectators/tourists.

Contrast with a utility cyclist like myself who often faces the possibility of sliding underneath an 18 wheeler if losing tire traction while accelerating hard out of a 90 degree turn at a red light. If all I had at stake was a few scrapes from falling or a bruised ego from dropping out of the race then I'd probably stay with slicks.



Click the picture.
and they have it in 20x1" size. at that price, it's worth the try. just checked and 20x1 is not 406.

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