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Thread: Road vs MTB

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    Road vs MTB

    I have a Giant Yukon I have had for 4 years. I like it and it rides great, but I have a question. Since I do most of my riding on city streets, would a road bike be better or mor comfortable to ride? I guess I'm not really sure what the advantage is to either one.
    Thanks in advance

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    cab horn
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    Mainly a more aer0 position on the road bike and tires that are perfectly suited for rides on paved roads.
    Mes compaingnons cui j'amoie et cui j'aim,... Me di, chanson.

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    Foo-Schnickens sizzam's Avatar
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    If you put slicker tires on your mountain bike, you will notice a big difference on the road - quieter, easier peddling, maybe faster speeds. You can buy a pair of cheapy slick tires made by Bell at Wal mart for about $9 each. That might make riding on the road more fun until you decide on whether or not to get a road bike.

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    Chairman of the Bored catatonic's Avatar
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    road bike has a more aero position...better for longer duration rides, especially when dealing with headwinds.

    The thinner, slick treaded tires have lower rolling resistance, but are not as cushy as lower pressure MTB tires are.

    MTBs have a more upright position, have wider tires, and tires on MTBs often have thicker rubber, so tehy are more flat resistant. You can get slicks for MTBs.

    All that said, I prefer a road bike for on the road....and use my MTB as a backup, for when I need to haul stuff that I can't on my road bike, or for trails.
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    "Most" road bikes sold today are "race bikes." IOW, most everything on those bikes is designed to be FAST. The sacrifice here is comfort. Your mountain bike will be much more comfortable but slower.

    Also road bikes are much less forgiving when it comes to pot holes and rough sections. Again these bikes are made to go fast out on open sections of smooth road. If that is where you want to ride and you want to ride fast, get the road bike. Otherwise stick with the mtb and get narrow slick tires, to gain a couple mph.

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    Thanks for the input. Is there a big difference in how the road bike tires vs. mtb tires grab the road? I guess I mean, do the road tires cause you to lose balance more if not careful?

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    The tires I have on my bike now are knobby on the sides, but have a slightly smooth center. I wonder if a smoother center would be better?

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    Dai Baka! Brate's Avatar
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    Why not try a hybrid? more comfy than a MTB without the aggresive posture of the Road bike?
    I'm still a newb so take what I say as such.
    Vas Corp Por!

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    Quote Originally Posted by sentinel4675
    The tires I have on my bike now are knobby on the sides, but have a slightly smooth center. I wonder if a smoother center would be better?
    It's a combination of that and the tire size. I'm assuming you're using 1.5 - 2" tires at the moment. Road tires start at 25-23mm. Which is quite a difference.
    Mes compaingnons cui j'amoie et cui j'aim,... Me di, chanson.

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    Don't worry about those skinny little tires loosing traction on the road, that's what they're made for. Watch a Tour segment sometime, especially one of the mountain descents.

    The old adage was, "if you want to go fast and far, get a road bike."

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    Quote Originally Posted by sentinel4675
    Thanks for the input. Is there a big difference in how the road bike tires vs. mtb tires grab the road? I guess I mean, do the road tires cause you to lose balance more if not careful?
    Yes. Sort of. Actually the road bike tires are simply less stable because there is less of a patch contacting the road. Get out your metric ruler and look at 23 mm. That is how wide many of the modern road tires are. Doesn't take long to figure out that these things can be dangerous if you aren't careful, or at least experienced.

    These tires are also very unforgiving in terms of soaking up road bumps. You will feel a lot more of them on the road bike. Also, as I hinted at earlier, they can become troublesome if you hit pot hole or even a little crack in the road.

    Again, the biggest differences that you will immediately feel is that they are FAST and they ride "hard" compared to what you are used to. Put these tires on smooth pavement and they are perfectly comfortable, but get off on a brick road, or gravel road, and you've got a problem. Meanwhile a mtb tire would be perfectly suited to those conditions.

    So, it's not that the road tires necessarily cause you to lose your balance, but they will be more likely to be uncomfortable in conditions to which they are not suited. They also might be considered more dangerous if ridden in said conditions. (in which they are not designed for)

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    Most road bikes sold in bike shops are race bikes and are not very suitable for everyday riding. You can get road bikes which are not for racing. These tend to have more tyre clearance, threaded eyelets for rack and fenders, lower/wider gear range and possible a more upright riding position. They are generally called touring bikes and are excellent for everyday commuting/utility and fitness riding.
    Modern flat-bar road bikes (such as Specialized Sirrus, Trek fx etc) are really lighter grade touring bikes with flat bars.

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