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Old 09-02-08, 10:15 AM   #1
mendozer
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What should I do? tips?

I currently take my mountain bike 8 miles to the next town for weekend trips (store, farmers market, etc). I'm debating whether or not I should buy a beater road bike and fix it up or just deal with the more difficult ride of my mtb. Anyone have suggestions?

I was thinking of getting an old road bike (most ebay ones end up being "vintage" aka SH*T) but now I don't know. I then thought of buying smooth tires to switch out with when i go on my longer rides.

what do you think?

thanks in advance
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Old 09-02-08, 12:25 PM   #2
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Yup, get the high pressure smooth slicks for the mtb. I've had them on a POS mtb that I used on the trail pavement. The sucker really moved. Nice for commuting too, nice tough flat protection. If I member correctly, they were 1.25 with about 90 psi. Specialized about $20 each. Well worth it!

Sometimes people try to go cheap with a beater off ebay. End up putting just as much as buying a new bike to fix it up. Unless it's a person that has had the hobby for years with pleny of stuff laying around for cheap!
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Old 09-02-08, 12:40 PM   #3
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Agree. If you've got a good bike, use it. Mountain bike sounds like a better grocery getter than a road bike, anyway.
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Old 09-02-08, 01:14 PM   #4
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Yup, get the high pressure smooth slicks for the mtb. I've had them on a POS mtb that I used on the trail pavement. The sucker really moved. Nice for commuting too, nice tough flat protection. If I member correctly, they were 1.25 with about 90 psi. Specialized about $20 each. Well worth it!

Sometimes people try to go cheap with a beater off ebay. End up putting just as much as buying a new bike to fix it up. Unless it's a person that has had the hobby for years with pleny of stuff laying around for cheap!
+1

I'd toss on the thinnest tires that your rims will allow. This will make a huge difference. I did this recently on my Hybrid and swapped out the 35mm tires and went to 28mm with a higher psi. You of course will still not have road bike speed because of weight and riding position. I picked up a new entry level road bike over the weekend and it has been a learning experience because it rides completely different than a mountain bike or hybrid.
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Old 09-02-08, 02:57 PM   #5
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cool thanks for the advice. i just get a spare set of wheels then with tires. although when you said "if you have a good mtb, use it" that was off. i bought an abused diamondback and fixed it up. it's no Kona, K2, or Trek, but I use it for commuting. I've also been thinking about putting together another mtb and getting rid of this one. My cousin has a titanium frame that he's not going to use so i can get that from him and build my bike. I told him to sell it for like 500 bucks but i'd rather have it for free
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Old 09-04-08, 03:26 PM   #6
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cool so i'll get some rims and tires. What would be more energy efficient and/or sensible? hybrid tires (as thin as wheel will allow) or smooth mountain (that way the width is the same)? and i'm assuming i'll have to get a duplicate set of rims the same exact size as mine.
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Old 09-04-08, 05:18 PM   #7
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Get the thinnest tires you can, usually about 1.25" for 26 inch tires. You can probably buy another used bike for what a second wheelset will cost you, but it is up to you. a cheap wheelset will be $100 plus shipping and you will also want it to have it's own cassette to make for easier swaps.
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Old 09-04-08, 07:44 PM   #8
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i would prefer a separate road bike but the only ones i want (cheap and fixable) on ebay are old. when i say old i mean braze on shifters and 27" wheels, not 700cc. plus i hate breaking my chain with the little dinger of a tool i have. where is a good online place to get wheels and tires?
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Old 09-04-08, 08:03 PM   #9
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you mean tires like this? on my standard 26" rims:
http://www.bikepartsusa.com/bikepart...y=tire-26_inch
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Old 09-04-08, 08:42 PM   #10
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actually since i don't know exactly what hub width my wheels are or my cassette compatibility, i think it might be easier to get a crappy road bike. i'm not too worried about the load capacity because everything i buy goes into my daypack, no baskets or anything. i just feel more comfortable with wide handlebars. plus i don't wanna spend a fortune on a bike; gotta keep in ming im a poor college student haha
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Old 09-05-08, 07:29 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by mendozer View Post
actually since i don't know exactly what hub width my wheels are or my cassette compatibility, i think it might be easier to get a crappy road bike. i'm not too worried about the load capacity because everything i buy goes into my daypack, no baskets or anything. i just feel more comfortable with wide handlebars. plus i don't wanna spend a fortune on a bike; gotta keep in mind im a poor college student haha
You don't need new wheels at all.
Narrower tires and tubes will fit on the MTB wheels you already have.

Of course there might be other reasons you may want to upgrade to a road bike, but "running slick narrow tires for pavement use" doesn't need to be one of them--an MTB can do that {-bikepartsusa doesn't seem to carry it, but the Continental Gran Prix comes in 26" diameter and is only 1" wide-**.

The 1.25" Panaracers will work.

If you're paranoid about dinging your rims on a curb, then bikepartsusa also has the 1.5" wide 65-psi Kenda City Slickers for $13. If you think 65-psi won't be enough, then they have the 1.5" wide 100-psi Kenda Kwests for $23 each.
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Old 09-05-08, 02:08 PM   #12
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cool. well i'm going to get spare rims anyways for switching them out. i'm assuming any 7 speed cassette will work? i think i'll go with the panaracers b/c higher psi and if i ding the rims on a curb, i apparantly need more help than wider tires.

a side note: these are road-like tires. do they use tubes? my mtb ones do but im not sure
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Old 09-05-08, 02:28 PM   #13
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On many (usually older) older mountain bikes you will need to check out the rim width. Don't put a tire on them that is skinnier than the rim.

If you have a 7 speed cassette, there is a good chance you'll have the wider 1.5" rims.

Any of the slicks I know about are going to be much better than any knobby tire.

I have 1.6" width on my Muirwoods and can't tell much of a difference between it and the 1" slick other than a better ride and being half usable off pavement with the bigger tire.

Last edited by tdister; 09-05-08 at 02:41 PM.
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Old 09-05-08, 03:08 PM   #14
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cool. ill aim for 1.5 or 1.6 tire then. and i suppose 1.5 or 1.6 inch rims too.
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Old 09-05-08, 03:23 PM   #15
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I like the Continental Sportcontacts in 1.6 so far. I don't have a large amount of miles on them (a couple hundred, max) but they handle well and are lightweight. Being thin and lightweight, I'm not sure how well they will be with flats but none so far.

I almost got some Michelens but they were crazy heavy, probably bulletproof though.

80 psi max
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Old 09-05-08, 03:47 PM   #16
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ok well i believe my wheels are 1.5 there's a worn decal but thats probably it. I see and like these 1.5s:

http://www.bikepartsusa.com/bikepart...y=tire-26_inch Tiogas

http://www.bikepartsusa.com/bikepart...y=tire-26_inch Kenda Kwest

http://www.bikepartsusa.com/bikepart...y=tire-26_inch Kenda City slickers

http://www.bikepartsusa.com/bikepart...y=tire-26_inch Cont sport contact

I like how they're all pretty smooth, but can they handle going off curbs and stuff? it's about 2 miles of curbs, gravel, and sidewalk to get to the bike path.

for wheels they only have wheelmaster, and i don't know anything about wheel brands so i assume thats good. i also don't think it matters between quick release or bolt. since they are only in use on the weekends.
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