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Old 07-27-10, 12:15 PM   #1
parksung
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best size bike tires?

I have an 80s Miyata touring bike that I use as a commuter and for riding around the city. I like a fast, smooth ride. It came with 700x25 tires, but the bike shop recently replaced one with a 700x28. Believe it or not, I notice the difference (doesn't glide as easily but could be because the tire tread). My frame is barely my size, I barely clear the top bar, and another bike shop recommended 700x23 since that size tire is actually smaller than the 700x28s.

My questions is: would a 700x23 tire be suicide being that I ride it in the city for commuting and it's such a thin tire (ie. less stable)? Why would someone use 700x23 vs. 700x25 or 28?
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Old 07-27-10, 01:05 PM   #2
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It isn't the size, it is the manufacturer. I ride a 700X32 that is firmer than my 700x28's at the same pressure. You could try increasing air pressure within reason or replace the tire.

I personally believe bigger isn't so bad, especially on a commuter.
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Old 07-27-10, 01:59 PM   #3
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It isn't the size, it is the manufacturer.
+1 Though generally, 700x23 tends to be narrower, faster and less comfortable; 700x28 tends to be wider, cushier, and perhaps an inkling slower.
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Old 07-27-10, 02:02 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by parksung View Post
I have an 80s Miyata touring bike that I use as a commuter and for riding around the city. I like a fast, smooth ride. It came with 700x25 tires, but the bike shop recently replaced one with a 700x28. Believe it or not, I notice the difference (doesn't glide as easily but could be because the tire tread). My frame is barely my size, I barely clear the top bar, and another bike shop recommended 700x23 since that size tire is actually smaller than the 700x28s.

My questions is: would a 700x23 tire be suicide being that I ride it in the city for commuting and it's such a thin tire (ie. less stable)? Why would someone use 700x23 vs. 700x25 or 28?
Any tire works if you can handle it, I have 23s on one of my city bikes (scavenged tires) and 32s on another. The narrower tires usually feel a bit faster, you just have to use higher pressure to avoid pinch flats, which can make the ride a little harsher. From your post it sounds like the shop recommended 23s because they would give you more clearance when you stand over the bike. Are you saying you don't like the 28s?
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Old 07-27-10, 02:15 PM   #5
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Any tire works if you can handle it, I have 23s on one of my city bikes (scavenged tires) and 32s on another. The narrower tires usually feel a bit faster, you just have to use higher pressure to avoid pinch flats, which can make the ride a little harsher. From your post it sounds like the shop recommended 23s because they would give you more clearance when you stand over the bike. Are you saying you don't like the 28s?
Yes, the shop said to put 23s on so I have more clearance. I don't love 28s since they feel bulkier, but it seems 25s are always out of stock and if I can get more clearance with 23s without killing myself with such skinny tires, I might try them.
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Old 07-27-10, 02:19 PM   #6
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I like 25s the best on road bikes. I've liked the ride of some 28s I've tried, but the having to deflate them to remove a wheel was a bit of a drag.

What kind of clearance do you need exactly? Fenders?
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Old 07-27-10, 04:12 PM   #7
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Several different things at play. One manufacturer's 28 is another's 25. To me width is less of an issue. Also higher pressure does not automatically mean lower rolling resistance.

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Old 07-27-10, 05:09 PM   #8
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I like 25s the best on road bikes. I've liked the ride of some 28s I've tried, but the having to deflate them to remove a wheel was a bit of a drag.

What kind of clearance do you need exactly? Fenders?
clearance from my crotch to the top bar
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Old 07-27-10, 05:52 PM   #9
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For me it's a mental thing, I feel a bit faster, "springier," with a 700 x 25 (I think, having the choice, I would always go with 25 over 23, 23 just seems to cross the line into too skinny/for-not-a-lot-of-benefit territory)...many comment on wider tires being less harsh. I guess I'm not sophisticated enough to notice (or maybe care about) the difference. I used to think that wider tires automatically meant tougher/flat-reisistance but you can get a Marathon Plus in 700 x 25 (I use one on my back wheel) and it's plenty tough.
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Old 07-28-10, 09:21 AM   #10
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A lot of the choice on tire size is dependent on rider weight. I would not recommend a 700 x 23 to a 250 pound rider while it is fine for a 150 pounder.

Also within any tire size rolling resistance seems to vary inversely with puncture resistance so you choose your tires, once size is determined, by how much puncture resistance is desired.
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