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  1. #1
    Senior Member bboseley's Avatar
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    Tire Size and Stability

    Tire width and its contribution, or not, to stability. I purchased a Trek 7300FX that came with no-name wheels, and 700x35 Bontrager Hardcase tires. Aside from my ongoing battle with clipless pedals that I added after a few miles – the bike is fine, perhaps great. The only thing that sort of bothers me are the big tires. I ride a flat trail often, 60 miles round trip, and these tires just do not what to coast. Stop pedaling, and you slow down fast. I ride for conditioning, but I would like a more free rolling tire, then I can compensate with gears. The question: My Trek dealer will install a set of Bontrager Race Wheels with Bontrager Race Lite tires mounted. (700x23c) Great looking wheels and tires – complete with red sidewalls. (Great price also).

    Aside from laying the bike way down on a 90% turn on wet blacktop, will these tires be “safe” for a not-so-expert rider? The dealer says yes – and he is willing to put any tire on I want – and points to the actual rubber meeting the road on 35c v 23c

    This seems like a logical upgrade – but I could take the wheels and go to a slightly larger tire, like 25, 28, or 32. Thoughts?

  2. #2
    Senior Member Ebbtide's Avatar
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    60 miles of trail (dirt?) riding will kill road wheels and tires.

    There should not be any real life differences between tire widths and rolling resistance. Tire pressure make the most difference.

    If your "trail" is paved, then just pick up some 700x28c tires (even 23 or 25 would work in most cases unless yur rim is more narrow than most) and use the wheels you have (your LBS is trying to work you over if "buying new wheels" were their suggestion).

  3. #3
    Humvee of bikes =Worksman Nightshade's Avatar
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    Before you spend any money try pumping your tires up so they
    are hard. This will decrease the rolling resitance which is
    what you're fighting. If that doesn't work then new tires are
    all that's left.

  4. #4
    Senior Member bboseley's Avatar
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    Right, I didnt mention the trail is paved. I also carry the suggested 80psi as stated on the sidewall.

  5. #5
    Along for the ride.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ehenz
    There should not be any real life differences between tire widths and rolling resistance. Tire pressure make the most difference.
    This is my experience too. I just ripped the Panaracer Pasela 35mm tires off my bike. I couln't take it any more. Numerous flats, scuffed sidewalls, and the annoying raised center patch. They claim it makes you able to go faster, but all it did for me was make turns squirrelly when I turned sharply enough to contact the road off the raised patch. It always felt like they were going to slide out from under me. I replaced them with Kenda Kouriers in the 40mm (yep, 40mm) that have a no such raised center patch (they are all tread). and I notice two differences. They don't accelerate as fast, since they are heavier. My top speed, as measured on a big downhill on my morning commute went from 36 mph to 34.5 mph. It's a small difference, but not significant to me. The cushy ride I get with the Kendas is more than worth the 1.5 mph.

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