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Old 03-24-05, 11:36 AM   #1
bikinglawyer
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I am rather new to cycling. I purchased a Gary Fisher Wahoo about 2 years ago before I knew much about bikes. I mainly ride on bike paths and manicured trails (old covnerted rr beds). I rarely ever do singletrack or serious offroading. I generally use my bike on weekends and go for 3 hour rides. I am considering swapping my tires to make my bike more amenable to roads and paths but would still like to do light trail riding and don't want to worry about getting flats all the time. Any recommendations on tires to do so? I am also considering making my bike more of a "hybrid" by purchasing a saddle with springs or seatpost with suspension and bar ends. Is this worth it? Am i better off just saving for a road bike and saving my Wahoo for the trails?

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Old 03-24-05, 11:49 AM   #2
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In my experience the spring loaded seats and seat posts are mostly for peopel who don't ride much.

Tires will make a huge difference.

A flat bar and a stem that isn't straight up will help out on aerodynamics and you won't ahve to trade out levers/shifters.
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Old 03-24-05, 12:36 PM   #3
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With a few modification, you can turn it into a quite good commuter bike, but dont bother with a suspension post.

Any 1.5 slick will work on a good trail although it may get slippery in clay mud and they will fly along on the roads.
Fit some fenders if you commute on wet roads. Add a luggage rack if you carry loads;you can do a big weekly shop using pannier bags. Fit the rack directly to the frame if possible. Add some lights and carry a very good lock. If you have platform pedals, you may want to consider toe clips, clipless pedals are not really suitable for college style commuting.
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Old 03-24-05, 12:58 PM   #4
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Consider a set of Specialized Nimbus Armadillo tires and a Brooks Conquest sprung saddle. The Conquest is great for on and off road. If the Nimbus tires are too slick for you, try the wider, deeper tread, Hemisphere Armadillo's.

The Cane Creek Ergo bar ends are a good addition as well. They don't stick out very far and are nicely shaped.
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Old 03-24-05, 01:21 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bikinglawyer
I am rather new to cycling. I purchased a Gary Fisher Wahoo about 2 years ago <snip>

<snip>I mainly ride on bike paths and manicured trails (old covnerted rr beds).
I rarely ever do singletrack or serious offroading.<snip>

<snip>Am i better off just saving for a road bike and saving my Wahoo for the trails?
I think you answered your own question.

Swap your knobby tires for some narrow semi-slicks, and you're set.

Would you ultimately rather have one, multi-purpose bike - or two bikes for specific ride types?

If you find yourself 50/50 on roads-trails during the same ride, and ride only on weekends,
I personally think you should save up for a cyclocross bike -
trade in the Wahoo, and just have the one bike for everything.

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Old 03-24-05, 02:51 PM   #6
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If you have knobby tires with tall widely spaced knobs, they will be very slow on the pavement.
You can find some semi slicks that have a reduced, lower smaller, or almost no tread in the middle, but still knobs on the side for dirt. If you get some good quality ones, they may also be lighter than the tires you have now. This will give you a big boost in speed on a hard surface, but still better traction than complete slicks on a soft surface. If you plan to keep riding on trails you might not want to get a small tire, just smoother in the middle. Keeping a larger tire gives better protection against pinch flats,
is more comfortable, and better traction off road.
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Old 03-24-05, 03:13 PM   #7
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http://www.nashbar.com/profile_morei...ku=7124&brand=

Take a look at this tire I have it on one of my bikes and it is great on the road and off road also. It make sense for an all around tire. I've ridden them on fire roads so it does perform quite well and on the road just as good. I bought them to ride on the road to get to get a faster pace to get to my favorite mtb trail and do that also.
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Old 03-24-05, 04:01 PM   #8
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Thanks all. I just visted my trek dealer and they suggested a set of Bontrager Select Invert 2.0" tires.
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Old 03-24-05, 04:12 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bikinglawyer
Thanks all. I just visted my trek dealer and they suggested a set of Bontrager Select Invert 2.0" tires.
You should be able to go as narrow as 1.5, using your old MTB rims...
Why did your LBS suggest the wide ones, I wonder? Overstock?

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Old 03-24-05, 04:17 PM   #10
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My only concern is that the bontrager selects don't have any knubbies and I still want to do light trail riding (crushed gravel/dirt). I'm concerned that if I do a slick 1.5 I will be more susceptible to flats.
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Old 03-24-05, 04:22 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bikinglawyer
My only concern is that the bontrager selects don't have any knubbies and I still want to do light trail riding (crushed gravel/dirt). I'm concerned that if I do a slick 1.5 I will be more susceptible to flats.
Honestly, the Bontrager Selects come in both 1.5 and 2.0, and they both have a Kevlar belt.
from some random webpage: Bontrager's Select Invert Kevlar makes your 26-incher sweet on the street and still offers enough traction for light off-road use. The inverted tread delivers great traction and a smooth ride at the same time. Plus, the Kevlar belt offers excellent puncture resistance.
A wider tire has a greater surface area in contact with the ground,
and therefore, offers more places for sharp and pokey things to find a way to ruin your day.
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Old 03-24-05, 04:22 PM   #12
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One of my mtb's has 1.95 Maxxis Wormdrive 430's on it.

Each tire is only 430 grams. Lighter or as light as some of the heavier hybrid tires, smooth on the middle, very fast, yet has knobs on the side that will propel it through sand and mud. It's a good compromise. There are lots of good semi slicks out there.
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Old 03-24-05, 04:25 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rmwun54
http://www.nashbar.com/profile_morei...ku=7124&brand=

Take a look at this tire I have it on one of my bikes and it is great on the road and off road also. It make sense for an all around tire. I've ridden them on fire roads so it does perform quite well and on the road just as good. I bought them to ride on the road to get to get a faster pace to get to my favorite mtb trail and do that also.
Those look pretty decent. I've been using the Kenda Kross tires for a while with some success. Fairly low rolling resistance on the road and some knobby action for the occasional trail. They used to have these for $10.

http://www.nashbar.com/profile_morei...ku=1966&brand=
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Old 03-24-05, 05:03 PM   #14
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Thanks--another stupid newbie question: Is it difficult to swap the tires yourself--i.e. would i be getting hosed by paying for instalation?
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Old 03-24-05, 05:07 PM   #15
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Thanks--another stupid newbie question: Is it difficult to swap the tires yourself--i.e. would i be getting hosed by paying for instalation?
It is not difficult, and you can only learn by trying... You will need these.

Search the forums for some useful tips and advice... here's a recent thread.

It wouldn't be a bad idea to get your LBS to do it once, as long as they let you watch and learn.

Good Luck!

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Old 03-24-05, 06:04 PM   #16
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Swapping tires is something a LBS should NEVER do for you. Unless you have loads of $ and are mega lazy. No one is going to teleport to change the tire for you, 50 miles from civilization.
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