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Old 10-05-13, 03:48 AM   #1
Shahmatt
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A wider alternative to the bald Kojak tires

My Schwalbe Kojak got damaged along the side after slipping partially into a road side grill.

It's not serviceable anymore, so I'm in the market for a new 20 inch tire for my folding commuter road bike.

I guess I'm lucky I didn't damage the wheel. The Kojak is a little too thin for the type of road surfaces I go through. So for the future I'm trying to find a wider alternative to it, possible in the 1.5 to 2.0 inch range.

The Schwalbe Marathon series and the CST Sensamo Firenze come to mind, but I don't like the fact that they are quite heavy. The kind of riding I do involves a lot of stops and starts at traffic lights and lighter would be best. Also balder would be much preferred. Basically a wider Kojak would be perfect, but this does not exist I think.

Are there any other alternatives out there?
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Old 10-05-13, 04:03 AM   #2
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I would get Primo Comet 20 x 1.5". Fine herringbone pattern. Very good robustness. Let us know if you find a good source, I should get some too. Ebay ones are a bit dear due to postage.
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Old 10-05-13, 06:29 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by Shahmatt View Post
but I don't like the fact that they are quite heavy
Just to be clear:

The effect of a heavy tire, even when accelerating, is tiny. What isn't tiny is rolling resistance.

It is true that heavier tires often have higher rolling resistance, but a heavy tire with low rolling resistance will be a much nicer ride than a light tire with poor rolling resistance.

The real world trade off is puncture resistance and durability versus rolling resistance.
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Old 10-05-13, 09:34 AM   #4
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My Schwalbe Kojak got damaged along the side after slipping partially into a road side grill.
OTOH i suspect the situation was a road hazard , and rain wet paint, steel grills and patch plates are not helpful ,
no matter what tire you got ..

Please be more careful
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Old 10-05-13, 10:31 AM   #5
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Our Fridays with the Kenda 1.75" tires are far better on rough city streets than our Fridays with the 1.35" Kojacks.

Tested this during Portland's 2013 "Pedalpalooza" rides.

Lou
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Old 10-05-13, 11:18 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cplager View Post
Just to be clear:

The effect of a heavy tire, even when accelerating, is tiny. What isn't tiny is rolling resistance.

It is true that heavier tires often have higher rolling resistance, but a heavy tire with low rolling resistance will be a much nicer ride than a light tire with poor rolling resistance.

The real world trade off is puncture resistance and durability versus rolling resistance.
Thanks very much.

I do understand that weight in general is not too damaging to performance. However in my particular case I have need to get through several junctions in quick succession in a particular area. It is this area that can literally be a "drag", because I accelerate and stop several times.

I am reconsidering the Kojak because of availability and price. Perhaps more careful cycling is what is needed. I was rather sad to lose the tire after only around only 400km of use.
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Old 10-05-13, 12:20 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Shahmatt View Post
Thanks very much.

I do understand that weight in general is not too damaging to performance. However in my particular case I have need to get through several junctions in quick succession in a particular area. It is this area that can literally be a "drag", because I accelerate and stop several times.

I am reconsidering the Kojak because of availability and price. Perhaps more careful cycling is what is needed. I was rather sad to lose the tire after only around only 400km of use.
why not schwalbe big apples? a fast rolling, high pressure, 2" wide tire. let's keep it real about tire weight. the difference between a kojak (285g) and a big apple (530g) is approximately equivalent to a 16 count box of chocolates..

if you have two boxes of choco in you backpack are you slowing yourself down? are you Bradley Wiggins?

i think something that is generally overlooked in this type of discussion is vibration.

if you are using kojaks or some other slick narrow tire pumped to high pressure for riding on city streets with changing terrain, you are subjecting yourself to considerable vibration. vibration decreases acceleration considerably and transfers a lot vertical bounce to your spine. the use of a wide high pressure tire like schwalbe big apples will improve your ride and reduce vibration considerably thereby giving you greater control and allow your energy to remain focused in forward propulsion and not lost to vibration.

quote from ballonbikes.com:
"Balloonbike tires have a different shape contact area to a narrow tire, so less energy is lost and is thus completely opposite to what is popularly assumed: Balloonbike tires are wide, but nevertheless roll more easily than narrow, standard tires.

A 60mm wide Balloonbike inflated to 2 bar rolls really easily and with a full suspension effect. Normal city or trekking bikes with 37mm standard tires need to be inflated to a hard 4 bar to achieve this rolling efficiency.

[h=3]Much lower rolling resistance[/h]

At the same pressure the BIG APPLE rolls around 10 Watts lower, while the comfort of the BIG APPLE at 2 bar produces the same rolling resistance as a standard tire at 4 bar.
In practice the advantages are greater than in theory: The suspension effect of wide tires smoothes out uneven roads, so the rider is protected from vibrations and thus saves energy.


On stone paths the Big Apple tires’ showed 11 per cent lower resistance, which means 11 per cent less energy is required to ride. (Laboratory tests confirm exactly identical rolling resistance results on an even surface using the same tire/air pressure combination.)"
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Old 10-05-13, 03:21 PM   #8
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Schwalbe makes their Marathon Supremes in 20x1.6". They're some of the best handling and riding tires I've used,and pretty light for their size.
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Old 10-05-13, 07:31 PM   #9
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why not schwalbe big apples?[/FONT]
Indeed! I have 50mm Big Apples on three of my folders and would have 55s if I had room. I'm not smart enough to be able to pay attention to everything all the time, and appreciate the help the wider and lower pressure BAs give me me when I hit some kind of minor road hazard while I'm trying to figure out whether that bus sees me or not...

Big Apples can definitely add comfort at the lower end of their pressure ranges, yet be relatively quick at their rated upper ends. One thing you have to be careful of though is that Schwalbe recommends derating the maximum inflation pressure from the value moulded into the sidewall if you're mounting some sizes of BAs on extremely narrow rims, but I'm still amazed at just how well these 50-55mm wide tires work on the 20-25mm wide (outside dimension) rims you find on a lot of folders.

I had Marathon Supremes on one of the bikes for a while and also ended up slicing a sidewall. I'm not sure how it happened because I noticed the tube bubble before it blew and couldn't relate it to any specific recent event. I had hoped they would be noticeably less sluggish than the Marathon Pluses I had on another bike, but can't really say they felt that much faster or more supple.

Schwalbe makes both a thin and thicker tube in SOME sizes, so that's a potential way to save a little extra weight if you're so inclined.

John
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Old 10-06-13, 03:54 AM   #10
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In my experience running low pressures also results in very few flats: a wide tyre will conform to bits of broken glass and distribute forces over a large area. Honestly though, the 20 x 2 BAs I bought in 2008 weren't that great in terms of comfort, and were way heavier than claimed (over 600g). I'm not sure if the newer versions are much changed but the 2.15 liteskin version I put on the front is much better (and no longer made).
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Old 10-06-13, 08:51 PM   #11
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Thanks all for your help. I have decided to go with the Kojak's again for the time being. This is because the other tires don't seem immediately available, and I hate having to take public transport to work. :-/
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Old 10-06-13, 09:07 PM   #12
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where do you think these yardbirds got their tires??


Last edited by smallwheeler; 10-06-13 at 09:12 PM.
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Old 10-06-13, 09:12 PM   #13
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Thanks all for your help. I have decided to go with the Kojak's again for the time being. This is because the other tires don't seem immediately available, and I hate having to take public transport to work. :-/
did you check with My Bike Shop?

http://mybikeshopsg.com/

surely they have big apples...
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Old 10-07-13, 03:33 AM   #14
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Yes indeed they do. Unfortunately it's quite a way from where I stay right now. I don't have the time to go there and I need something immediately.

I intend to move over to big wheels soon, and will buy from them when I have the opportunity to do so. But in the mean time I'll just manage with a Kojak that's being sold by a chap near to me.
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Old 10-17-13, 12:12 PM   #15
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Schwalbe Marthon Race or Supreme.

Similar to Kojak but wider is the Greenspeed Scorcher.
Then the Vredestein F-Lite, which is the wides slick I know off (47mm wide).
It is also tested to be the best rolling (on par with Ultremos).
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Old 02-02-14, 01:20 AM   #16
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Hey, sorry to hijack this thread, but I tried sending smallwheeler a PM and found I don't have enough posts yet. Of course, the interface didn't tell me that straightaway---no, first it let me waste five minutes composing the message, THEN it presents the error.

So anyway, in the photo above with the Swifts posing in front of My Bike Shop, I see they are fitted with low-rider front racks which seem designed for 20" wheels. Does anyone know what rack that is? I've been looking for one without much success.

Thanks.
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Old 02-03-14, 11:58 AM   #17
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Hey, sorry to hijack this thread, but I tried sending smallwheeler a PM and found I don't have enough posts yet. Of course, the interface didn't tell me that straightaway---no, first it let me waste five minutes composing the message, THEN it presents the error.

So anyway, in the photo above with the Swifts posing in front of My Bike Shop, I see they are fitted with low-rider front racks which seem designed for 20" wheels. Does anyone know what rack that is? I've been looking for one without much success.

Thanks.
It can be found on this page about a third of the way down:

http://www.thorusa.com/accessories/racks.htm


The Bikes in the Picture are Dahon Speed TR (tour). They came with both racks shown.

added later:

The linked rack IS NOT EXACTLY the same rack pictured above (slightly different construction)...if it makes a differnce, email THOR and he will let you know if it will work in your application.
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Last edited by zebede; 02-03-14 at 12:00 PM. Reason: Clarification
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Old 02-03-14, 02:54 PM   #18
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Hey, sorry to hijack this thread, but I tried sending smallwheeler a PM and found I don't have enough posts yet. Of course, the interface didn't tell me that straightaway---no, first it let me waste five minutes composing the message, THEN it presents the error.
Just PM me the message and I'll forward it to smallwheeler for you.
Yeah, I can be a real PITA sometimes.

As for tires, after years of throwing away money trying different brands and models I've pretty much decided to throw in the towel when it comes to experimenting and just run Schwalbe tires on my bikes now... Big Apples, Fat Franks and Marathons. Funny thing about the Marathons, they are akin to the (Metzeler) Marathon tires I ran on my street motorcycles for decades... mid-range price but very high quality.
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