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  1. #1
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    Fitting A Hybrid Bike To Run Street Tires?

    Hello all. My question today is: I have a schwinn hybrid bike from around 83 I think. Well the shifters and brakes are tired so I decided to strip the frame put a new brake and shifter system on it. and I'd also like to convert it to street tires. I understand that street tires are thinner than a hybrid or mtn bike tire and rim. so I'm sure I'd have to use A: different brake system, B: different gear system on the back tire as the rim would have to be changed out.

    I want to know if this is possible or if I should just keep it as a hybrid or even fix it up and sell it to buy a road bike. I have a few hybrids already so I want a road bike now.

    What do you ladies and gents say?

  2. #2
    Super Moderator no1mad's Avatar
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    I'd say that you need to clarify what you define 'street tires' as. I define them as a tire with little to no tread blocks/knobbies and they come in all kinds of different sizes- 26" and 700c. My bike has these in 26x1.5" format-
    Quote Originally Posted by Cyril View Post
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  3. #3
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    Hello No1mad, I'd like to run something like this a little thinner though: http://tinyurl.com/qf8qqj8
    It ran something like this: http://tinyurl.com/kr4cy8o
    Ps. Please pardon me and not taking the type to embed the images. I'm currently on a phone rather a computer to do so.
    Last edited by Zax1108; 05-20-13 at 02:36 PM. Reason: Mistake's happen.

  4. #4
    The Recumbent Quant cplager's Avatar
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    You're bike probably either has 26" wheels or 700c wheels. In either case, you can get smooth tires for the bike. You won't need to change the wheel, brakes, or gearing.

    You don't need narrow tires to ride on the road; you just want something smooth, as No1mad said (not that the tire you posted looks particularly narrow:)
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  5. #5
    Goodbye Leeroy Jenkins tagaproject6's Avatar
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    if you have the budget for a road bike, go that route.

    What you propose can be done, and it should only be a matter of getting new tires and slapping them on.
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  6. #6
    Super Moderator no1mad's Avatar
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    Perhaps you should post a pic of your project bike later to get feedback on whether it will be less costly to convert it or flip it and buy another.
    Quote Originally Posted by Cyril View Post
    Ride what and in what manner pleases you. Those that mind don't matter, and those that matter don't mind. srsly.
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  7. #7
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    So to put it in layman's terms I want a bike that goes fast haha. I've always known the bikes with the thin tires to go fast so that's what I'm basing off of. If this is not the case what does then?

    I have a mtn bike and hybrid bike as well. as the one I'm wanting to work on. and the hybrid bike is nice. but it's not very fast. you've got to do a lot of work to get far.

    So it would be my understanding that the larger the the roundness of the tire the easier it would be to go fast. I.e a 12 inch rim would be slower then a 26 inch rim. But that is again just another guess.

  8. #8
    Super Moderator no1mad's Avatar
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    The smaller the diameter of the wheel, the faster it will accelerate, but will not maintain speed due to lack of rotational mass.

    The size of the wheel/tire is only part of the equation if you want to go fast. Gearing, aerodynamics, and the amount of exertion you put out have a bigger role in determining speed than the tire size. Some experienced members here have reported that speed differential when comparing their road bike to their hybrid/mtb w/slicks is roughly 2 mph.
    Quote Originally Posted by Cyril View Post
    Ride what and in what manner pleases you. Those that mind don't matter, and those that matter don't mind. srsly.
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  9. #9
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    Also I'm following this topic which made me focus on thin rims and tires http://www.bikeforums.net/archive/in...p/t-66441.html

    Ps. sorry I didn't mean to post that as a reply to any post. it was meant as a side note.

    But yeah I think I'm just going to invest in a road bike. it has the gears the tires and rims the frame and handlebars. trying to convert this bike just seems like a problem child. also the frame weight is a big factor I've heard.
    Last edited by Zax1108; 05-20-13 at 05:08 PM. Reason: Mistakes Happen.

  10. #10
    The Recumbent Quant cplager's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by no1mad View Post
    The smaller the diameter of the wheel, the faster it will accelerate, but will not maintain speed due to lack of rotational mass.
    This is basically a myth. The effect of wheel mass is very small compared to the total weight of the rider and bicycle. Additionally, some 700c wheels/tires are lighter than some 20" wheels/tires, so the small effect becomes even less important.

    Quote Originally Posted by no1mad View Post
    The size of the wheel/tire is only part of the equation if you want to go fast. Gearing, aerodynamics, and the amount of exertion you put out have a bigger role in determining speed than the tire size. Some experienced members here have reported that speed differential when comparing their road bike to their hybrid/mtb w/slicks is roughly 2 mph.
    Rolling resistance is the biggest effect at low speeds. At medium to high speeds the aerodynamics becomes the biggest effect. For beginner riders, the only 2 mph effect I've ever seen is swapping out knobby tires and putting on nice quality high(er) pressure slick tires. For more advanced riders, getting a road bike that puts the rider in a more aerodynamic position can make a big difference.

    For the OP, I think you want to try nicer slicks. Ride that for a while. See what you like about it, don't like about it. And then with that experience, if you want, you'll have a better idea of what you want next.

    Cheers,
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  11. #11
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    Yeah all in all. I think I'm just going to fix it up and keep it how it is. It has a fair amount of meaning to me also it was a bought it from a good friend and all that. so I'm going to keep it as a hybrid maybe put some slicks on it.

    And just invest in a road bike that's made to do that stuff. I'm not going about trying to make a mtn bike out of a road bike. so why make a road bike out of a hybrid right.

    Thank you all for your help.

  12. #12
    Super Moderator no1mad's Avatar
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    One quick question- what kind of speeds are you reaching while riding currently? I ask because the equipment is only part of the equation- I'd hate for you to buy a new road bike and discover that you aren't seeing the results that you were expecting.

    I bought my bike, thought it was slow, and considered changing out the drive train to get more speed. Thing is, after using Sheldon's gear calculator, it wasn't the bike that was slow- it was me.
    Quote Originally Posted by Cyril View Post
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  13. #13
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    I'm currently running about 20MPR. little less little more. I get sore knees (I'm only 18 so rather annoying) so I don't try to push it too hard. I'd like to go a little faster than that.

  14. #14
    7-speed doomsday prepper ThermionicScott's Avatar
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    Thin tires won't make your hybrid much faster:



    Save up your pennies and buy a road bike when you can.
    Quote Originally Posted by chandltp View Post
    There's no such thing as too far.. just lack of time
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  15. #15
    The Recumbent Quant cplager's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ThermionicScott View Post
    Thin tires won't make your hybrid much faster:



    Save up your pennies and buy a road bike when you can.
    What he said (and kudos to No1mad for asking the question because the OPs response is literally twice what I would have expected).

    If you're already going anywhere near 20 mph (32 kph!!), then you're in the aerodynamically limited range. If you want to go faster, you're going to need a more aerodynamic position (e.g., road bike).

    If you're going 20 mph on a hybrid with crappy tires and you aren't in a full tuck (or going down hill), then either stop taking the PEDs or go find a team with which to race (or, well, both ).

    Cheers,
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  16. #16
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    I understand that street tires are thinner than a hybrid or mtn bike tire and rim.
    Nope.. 'Hybrid' is the Bike not the tire. slick 'tread' tires,to ride on the street, are made in many sizes .. including for your wheels.

    knobby tires, otoh, grip in corners on dirt trails. NB: there are even tires for mixed surfaces.

    should just keep it as a hybrid or even fix it up and sell it to buy a road bike.
    I have a few hybrids already
    so for N-1/N+1 .. take it into the Dealer you are buying the road racier bike from,
    they May take it As Is.
    as a partial trade in discount.

    if you think you can do better after those fix up investments, then thats your choice..

    in the LBS, you can get them to say what the pre resale repairs will cost you.



    So ... You want more Speed?



    It's the bending You over , lower on the bike , that reduces that big upswept curve.. air resistance.. a little.
    Last edited by fietsbob; 05-21-13 at 12:55 PM.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by cplager View Post
    What he said (and kudos to No1mad for asking the question because the OPs response is literally twice what I would have expected).

    If you're already going anywhere near 20 mph (32 kph!!), then you're in the aerodynamically limited range. If you want to go faster, you're going to need a more aerodynamic position (e.g., road bike).

    If you're going 20 mph on a hybrid with crappy tires and you aren't in a full tuck (or going down hill), then either stop taking the PEDs or go find a team with which to race (or, well, both ).

    Cheers,
    Charles
    Thanks. haha I'm not taking any. and I clocked it on just flat road. but their was no wind or any of that. but I'm a jogger so I have rather good legs already. anyway thanks again for the help. and yeah I'm not sure I could do a race. I get sore knees after awhile of biking so I don't think I'd be able to make it through the race.

  18. #18
    The Recumbent Quant cplager's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zax1108 View Post
    Thanks. haha I'm not taking any. and I clocked it on just flat road. but their was no wind or any of that. but I'm a jogger so I have rather good legs already. anyway thanks again for the help. and yeah I'm not sure I could do a race. I get sore knees after awhile of biking so I don't think I'd be able to make it through the race.
    Sore knees could be you getting used to biking. Or it could be you mashing (spinning the pedals too slowly and forcefully) instead of spinning (using a lower gear for the same speed so you are spinning the pedals much more quickly. Or it could be your seat too high, too low. It's worth thinking about now while it's just a minor annoyance instead of something that keeps you off the bike.
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