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Old 09-07-03, 02:27 PM   #1
Inoplanetyanin
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Wal Mart tire user's report!

Ok, here is what's amazing.

I am on a cross country tour with loaded road bicycle that has 27 inch wheels. First tires used were IRC hp90. Those tires wore out to the treads in only 650 miles!

The a Wal Mart tire was purchased. 27 inch size, that's made in China and costs $5.96 in most Wal Marts in States, and $7+ in Canada.

This tire was used on the front wheel and here is how it looks after 1250 miles. (Not even half way yet! )



It had 2 flats, has been used mostly on asphalt but also on gravel and dust roads some...
I find the quality to be outstanding. Recommend this tire to anyone who has 27 inch wheels. :-) One man in bike shop to the question how those tires are, answered "- they are not good tires", while I am sure he never used it himself...
Report based on first hand experience

Last edited by Inoplanetyanin; 09-07-03 at 02:39 PM.
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Old 09-07-03, 03:09 PM   #2
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I believe IRC are more of racing tires so won't last long, 650 miles is pretty pathetic for a any tire .. I could be wrong there. I believe Kenda makes the walmart tires they are not top of the line but not bad tires. If I remember correctly you bought some michelin how are those doing compared?

Last edited by Kev; 09-07-03 at 03:21 PM.
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Old 09-07-03, 07:41 PM   #3
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I would hate to patronize anti-worker's rights Wal-Mart or anti-union, anti-environment, anti-democracy China.

Of course it's getting difficult to find any product in the US that's not made in places that can undersell most everyone else with low wages, lousy working conditions, no worker's rights, & no pollution controls. Remember before you buy anything, there's more than one kind of "cost".
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Old 09-07-03, 07:52 PM   #4
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LOL, how bout
Quote:
anti-worker's rights Wal-Mart or anti-union, anti-environment, anti-democracy
WALMART I hate to pratronize them too.
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Old 09-07-03, 07:55 PM   #5
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hmm the last post didn't make much sense; but just remember "say no to Walmart"
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Old 09-07-03, 08:42 PM   #6
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Well, those Wal-Mart tires do seem to be wearing more on one side....

FWIW, IRC HP90's weren't a good choice to start with. For really long distance touring and utimate flat protection, you really need Specialized Armadillos, or maybe even Panaracer Pasela Tourguards (both are available in 27" size). I managed several thousand miles on a set of the Armadillos once, without even one single flat. From the wear on them, I'd guess that they would last from 5k to 8k miles.
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Old 09-07-03, 09:15 PM   #7
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Are those Panaracer Pasela Tourguards the same tire that Soma Fabrications advertises on their website ? Where can they be ordered?
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Old 09-07-03, 09:47 PM   #8
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I didn't buy my bike at the Wal-Mart but it did have Kenda tires on it. This year I changed them to IRC XC tires. I do feel the difference in weight; however, other beneficial factors are none existent. It wears down very fast and sidewalls are very weak. I'm not planning on going back to Kenda but it proves the point that more expensive and a supposedly a better brand is not always better!

PS. it's good to hear from you. I thought you were gone from this site..... Good luck with the tour and please take as much pictures as possible so later we'll all be able to see them
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Old 09-07-03, 09:48 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by Dave Stohler
Well, those Wal-Mart tires do seem to be wearing more on one side....
Indeed the tires are wearing to one side - as they should. This is because roads are graded so that rain will run off to the sides.

The grade or "slope" we ride on, although not noticeable, wears tires on one side faster than the other.

The really old timers used to rotate their tires for this reason. Nobody seems to do this any more, myself included, but I have heard old old timers talk about it.
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Old 09-07-03, 10:01 PM   #10
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I would not say IRC tires are bad, like you said chuvak they are lighter so that would make you go faster so for racing it would be beneficial. For every day use would not make that big a difference. You have some wide extremes in tires sometimes, ones that wear fast but will be lighter and faster and other ones that will be heavier last longer and more puncture resistent but slower. I like to be in the middle somewhere. Not one tire is good for every condition.
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Old 09-07-03, 11:12 PM   #11
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You can get cheap, long-wearing Chinese tires at your LBC, also; or even better if you have one, at a local bike repair co-op. I'm with the previous posters who won't patronize WalMart because of their poor record on labor issues and because they compete unfairly with local businesses. I'd rather spend $10 at an LBC for the same tire WalMart sells for $6, and give the business to the LBC.
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Old 09-08-03, 03:32 AM   #12
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i agree with most of the comments here...

just because a tire lasts longer does not necessarily mean it is "better"... often "good" tires have softer rubber so they grip/corner better which means they also wear out faster. then as mentioned weight is a factor. i would expect a good touring tire would last as long or longer than the Wal-mart tire, as well as being lighter, having better grip and better wet-road performance...

i also only shop at Walmart if i have no other choice (an emergency like when my car broke down and the only place within miles that sold batteries was Walmart) --- support your local bike shop, or if you want the best deal, shop mail-order... but Wal-mart is evil and i don't support it with my $$$.

P.S. it's good to see so many people unhappy with Wal-mart's horrible practices... too bad more Americans don't think anout anything than "buying more for less"!
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Old 09-08-03, 09:45 AM   #13
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Hi. Yeah, I agree with everything said above.
The IRC werent the right tires to start with, indeed, but I had to put them on within last two days, and it was a weekend. I wanted to put continentals, but it would take several days to order them. IRC ARE soft...

Yeah, of course the left side of the tire wore out faster because of the angle of the road , on the picture it is already rotated, right after second flat.

Yeah, Michelin World Tour tire is on the rear and it's doing great, compared to IRC on the rear. It's been already 1300 miles and Michelin has about 35% tread left. it is also bigger in diameter which gives more amortization for the poor rim.

Indeed, I saw some Kendas at Wal Mart, this one, though is some chinese named tire..., anyway.

Just adding my little experience to tire knowledge. I am in Regina, Saskatchewan right now, by the way. Very beautiful, European style city.
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Old 09-08-03, 12:07 PM   #14
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I won't buy Chinese anything if i can avoid it (which, i admit, can be hard to do...even Raleigh bikes are made there now). China is WalMart multiplied millions of times.

Our discussion here seems to leave out the fact that some tires simply put more rubber on the road to begin with: with thicker tread depth they're likely to last longer.

But tire life is not necessarily a measure of quality - you'd have to compare tires that are the same size & intended for the same purpose in order to make valid comparisons.

And as someone mentioned, in a racing tire, tire life may be considered secondary to light weight, better handling, gripping in turns, etc.
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Old 09-09-03, 02:31 AM   #15
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Quote:
I won't buy Chinese anything if i can avoid it (which, i admit, can be hard to do...even Raleigh bikes are made there now). China is WalMart multiplied millions of times.
hmm... there i'm not convinced: that "China is WalMart multiplied millions of times"... i'd have to think about that one.

Wal-Mart is "evil" in my eyes primarily NOT b/c of cheap products and cheap labor, but b/c of their marketing practies of DOMINATING by leveraging their cheap products - preventing unions, underpaying their AMERICAN workers, getting government to finance roads, "planning" and using illegal price-gouging to put small businesses out of business, etc. -- our current big-business favoring government turns a blind eye to all this stuff that should be illegal!

China is a country that has cheap labor and thus can produce cheap products... globilization is happening whether we want it to or not (to reverse it now would be HARD. big business has already won this one, but it doesn't NECESSARILY have to be bad, but it's headed that way), so i think cheap products from China are here to stay with or withour Wal-mart... BUT i think the products can be bought through companies/retail outlets that treat their employees fairly and don't use such competitive/destructive/borderline illegal practices (like firing employees who attempt to unionize - should be illegal but with the conservative government it is overlooked - in most of the 20th century Walmart would be illegal and penalized)

in my opinion: if you want a cheap product, buy it through your LBS or local retailer (yes, often costs a slight bit more) or order through a decent mail-order company. there are "problems/issue" here but at least (most) treat their employees better than Wal-mart.

oops. sorry, i guess this is getting a little too "politcal" for the General Discussion...
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Old 09-09-03, 11:37 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally posted by Inoplanetyanin
I am in Regina, Saskatchewan right now, by the way. Very beautiful, European style city.
Wow. I've never heard those words spoken about Regina before! I guess we look down on ourselves too much. Thanks for the compliment!

FYI, if you want quality gear at dirt cheap prices, Dutch Cycle is the place for you! (Be forwarned though, it is not in the "beautiful European" parts of the city! )
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Old 09-09-03, 01:50 PM   #17
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This has been an interesting thread. It started with a favorable technical comment on a commonly used product and rapidly degraded into an attack on the largest retailer in the country. I mean "WalMart is the debbel." Come on now. Get real folks. WalMart is a retailer, a seller of goods to mass markets. They happen to be better at it than anyone else right at the moment. Someone will come along and knock them off their pedastal. It happened to Well Fargo, Sears Roebuck and K-Mart.

It will happen to Wally World too.
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Old 09-09-03, 03:55 PM   #18
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Size isn't everything, J.
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