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Old 10-22-03, 07:27 AM   #1
nikos
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Wire bead vs kevlar bead - really worth the price ?

I want to pick up a set of tires for cyclo cross this weekend. I can either order a set of wire bead conti cross tires for 19 each or get them right now at the lbs - but kevlar for 39 each. Other than a litte weight difference, is double the price worth it for kevlar bead?
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Old 10-22-03, 08:30 AM   #2
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Yes,bullet proof materal is better then wire.
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Old 10-22-03, 08:53 AM   #3
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well if they ship you the wire bead tires, most likely they will end up folding the tire when they ship it to you, kinking the bead. i always wondered how they ship wire bead tires to LBSes.
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Old 10-22-03, 08:59 AM   #4
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I ordered some wire beaded Avocet Cross II Ks and they were wrapped in a figure-8 pattern with a rubber band...

Probably not worth the extra money just for the Kevlar bead, however a kevlar belt might be worth it for the puncture resistance...

Jay
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Old 10-22-03, 09:48 AM   #5
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Kevlar is usually foldable. Wire bead is not.


BTW, Continental does not fold wire beaded tires when they ship.
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Old 10-22-03, 10:02 AM   #6
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Since the bead is inside the rim, I don't think Kevlar makes a difference as to how durable it is, does it?

The Kevlar bead should only buy you less weight and greater portability (they are called folding tires for a reason).

- Jeff
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Old 10-22-03, 10:25 AM   #7
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Mr. Nikos...
In a word, yes! Wired tires are in most instances a pain in the butt to install....especially when you're out on the road fixing a flat and just discovered you've just pinched a new tube while trying to fight that last bit of bead over the rim.
Kevlar beads are ten times easier to install....often times using only my fingers to install, depending on tire/rim combo. If you can afford them, go for the kevlars...

George

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Old 10-22-03, 10:31 AM   #8
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So double the price for foldable portable tires....wow
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Old 10-22-03, 10:34 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nikos
So double the price for foldable portable tires....wow
double price??......that's a huge difference, and the difference being only the beads??
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Old 10-22-03, 10:46 AM   #10
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A look in the ubiquitous Performance catalog will show that some companies manufacture the 'same' tire with option for wire or kevlar beads. Price differences are $3-6 between, with kevlar more. Continental, Specialized are
some companies that do this. The LBS price may not be out of line with the LBS but is not typical of the spread the manufacturers put on their tires with just a bead difference. Wire beads are significantly harder to mount and remove and are foldable, but with difficulty. Once you try kevlar beads you never go back, unless $6 difference is crucial. For pix about folding a wire bead tire go to http://home.bellsouth.net/p/pwp-sch1943/
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Old 10-22-03, 10:56 AM   #11
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The one advantage I can think of for 'cross is that often a kevlar-beaded tire can be mounted/unmounted with your bare hands. If you flat during a race this might be a benefit, I dunno.

Other than that, folding tires are useful as spares on tours.

The kevlar-bedad tires I've used have had relatively soft sidewalls; when they were also kevlar-belted the belt was only under the tread, not the sidewalls. I wouldn't have given much for their resistance to sidewall damage. These were touring tires, though; presumably a 'cross tire would be more robust.

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Old 10-22-03, 11:39 AM   #12
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The difference is not $3-6 on these tires, here's the only place that sells them on the web - cambria. Scroll down to conti cross country - its $19 for wire and 39 for kevlar
http://cambriabike.com/tires/knobby.htm
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Old 10-22-03, 11:56 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nikos
The difference is not $3-6 on these tires, here's the only place that sells them on the web - cambria. Scroll down to conti cross country - its $19 for wire and 39 for kevlar
http://cambriabike.com/tires/knobby.htm
www.bicycletires.com also has them. Not much cheaper, but I've gotten good service from them in the past.

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Old 10-22-03, 07:12 PM   #14
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[QUOTE=nikos]The difference is not $3-6 on these tires, here's the only place that sells them on the web - cambria. Scroll down to conti cross country - its $19 for wire and 39 for kevlar
http://cambriabike.com/tires/knobby.htm[/QUOTE/]

I stand somewhat corrected: haven't ordered tires for past three yrs and that
was what I recalled for road tires. Looked in several catalogs and web sites and there are not as many dual wire/kevlar beads as there were, or they are
not listed, typical price differentials are $12, with Conti 2000 Ultra having a
$9 difference in price. Wire bead tires seem to be ~100gr heavier than kevlar
bead equivalents. You seem to be stuck with the limited # of suppliers for your desired tire. I have been looking at Schwalbe Stelvios for my bent, the only
406 size with kevlar bead/belt, and the price difference wire to kevlar bead is
about $15-18 (28 -> 42-5). It takes about 20min to wrestle wire beads on the bent rims. Steve
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Old 10-22-03, 11:54 PM   #15
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I've found the only theoretical adavandtage to kevlar beads is the weight, and maybe traveling with them. They tend to seat worse on initial mounting. In terms of shipping, kevlar and wire beaded tires are often shipped the same/similar (ie, wire beads are folded as well), which makes me wonder if they truly fold better. In terms of punture resistance, I question the effectiveness of kevlar belts versus a tire liner, which is much more economical in the long run.

Summary, unless you're racing or they're the only option for a tire you like, don't bother with them.
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Old 10-23-03, 01:26 AM   #16
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Kevlar tyres are worth the extra money. Apart from being easier to mount and foldable, the kevlar gives the tyre an amazing amount of puncture resistance. I pulled a kevlar tyre off my bike and picked out 20+ pieces of small glass from the outer rubber layer and not one piece had penetrated the kevlar beading. Expensive but worth it.

CHEERS.

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Old 10-23-03, 03:53 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dutchy
Kevlar tyres are worth the extra money. Apart from being easier to mount and foldable, the kevlar gives the tyre an amazing amount of puncture resistance. I pulled a kevlar tyre off my bike and picked out 20+ pieces of small glass from the outer rubber layer and not one piece had penetrated the kevlar beading.
Does a Kevlar bead necessarily mean a Kevlar belt? Just curious. Like I said before, I can't see how the bead material would affect the puncture resistance of the tire if that part is inside the rim.

BTW, looking at Cambria's site, I notice that there are other tires with kevlar vs wire beads that only have a $6-$7 difference (eg., Continental Grand Prix ATB), but the IRCs further down the Knobby page show a $12 dollar difference. Maybe there is something else about the tires. Or maybe it is a marketing/pricing issue with Continental. Could be worth looking at another brand. After all, Continentals are good (I ride a pair of Town and Country tires to work), but they are not known as the most economical alternative.

- Jeff
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Old 10-23-03, 07:18 AM   #18
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Quote:
Does a Kevlar bead necessarily mean a Kevlar belt?
Nope, you can have a kevlar belt and a wire bead. My Avocets are like that like I mentioned before. And you can have just a kevlar bead too. Although in Avocet's case there is a "Cross II" and a "Cross II K" and the K is specified because of the kevlar belt.

The bead has no affect on the belt, whether it has an extra Kevlar lining or not is not dependent on the bead material.

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Old 10-23-03, 09:48 AM   #19
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Get the foldable tire if you can afford it. $20 more does sound like a big price difference. Typically foldables are between 5 and 10 dolars more the wire beads.

Pros of foldable:
  • Lighter (less rotating mass)
    Easier to install/ repair flats
    Portability
    Better ride quality? (not sure about that one)

Cons of foldable:
  • more expensive

All and all foldables are worth the money, especially if you're looking for performance.
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Old 10-23-03, 01:54 PM   #20
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If i'm not mistaken, Contis, Michis, & some others are still made in Europe, which accounts for the higher prices over items made in countries without labor laws or environmental standards, such as China.
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Old 10-23-03, 02:43 PM   #21
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If i'm not mistaken, Contis, Michis, & some others are still made in Europe, which accounts for the higher prices over items made in countries without labor laws or environmental standards, such as China.
My last four Conti Top Touring 2000's were made in Thailand. Two were probably made in 2000 or 2001; the other two are from this year. They weren't any cheaper than they ever were.

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Old 10-23-03, 03:16 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deliriou5
well if they ship you the wire bead tires, most likely they will end up folding the tire when they ship it to you, kinking the bead. i always wondered how they ship wire bead tires to LBSes.
Cheapo tires are zip tied together and bundled in industrial saran wrap Better wire tires have been shipped to us in boxes as have the folded kevlar tires. Our suppliers don't fold the wire tires to put them in boxes - they just use a bigger box.
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Old 10-24-03, 08:52 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nikos
I want to pick up a set of tires for cyclo cross this weekend. I can either order a set of wire bead conti cross tires for 19 each or get them right now at the lbs - but kevlar for 39 each. Other than a litte weight difference, is double the price worth it for kevlar bead?
NO. If the tyre bead material is the only difference, not worth it. And on a cyclo cross event? Who cares about 10-20 grams (at the most) of extra weight.
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Old 10-24-03, 09:56 AM   #24
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NO. If the tyre bead material is the only difference, not worth it. And on a cyclo cross event? Who cares about 10-20 grams (at the most) of extra weight.
Well no,more like 75-100 gram per tire difference
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Old 10-24-03, 05:52 PM   #25
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So double the price for foldable portable tires....wow
Geee man,, this is fun, a "hobby" a "sport" its not like were buying food or utility bills here. Kelvar rules.. Id pay extra any day and do so glady. If I had to pay extra for yelllow striped tires for my road bike Id do it in a heart beat.....what ever makes ya smile.
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