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Old 06-03-09, 04:11 PM   #1
pkpsu
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Tires for Michigan

I just moved out to Michigan for the summer (Lansing Area) and these roads are brutal! I'm averaging a flat every other ride! Granted I'm running some Michelin Lithions, but I never had any trouble back on the beautiful country roads of PA. For those of you from Michigan, shed some advice to the new kid on what kind and size of tires you are running. Also, a question on tire pressures. Is it better to have lower tire pressure and absorb the shock of the road or higher tire pressure to resist against pinch flats?

Thanks!
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Old 06-03-09, 05:11 PM   #2
phoran
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Welcome! tough to beat Continental Ultra Gatorskins for durability and road feel. I think high pressure is the way to go. are you running 700c?
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Old 06-03-09, 05:12 PM   #3
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Are your flats due to punctures or impacts? Around Ann Arbor I don't get many glass/nail hits. I keep the pressures up to get extra rim protection - that is necessary! I run mostly tubulars, but one has 28 mm Gatorskins, and this is the one I have lately had to run harder. I've re-learned how to float my butt and hands when the bike rattles over bumps.
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Old 06-03-09, 05:18 PM   #4
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I'm running 700c wheels and the punctures are mostly pinch flats. I was checking out the continental ultra gatorskins, just can't decide between 23/25mm and folding/wire bead.
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Old 06-03-09, 09:06 PM   #5
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If you like Michelins, Krylion Carbons are hard to beat. I have also had good luck with Continental GP4000s also. I run 100 psi front and 110 rear. I am 190 lbs. but so far I have had good success on central MI roads for the last 9000 miles.
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Old 06-04-09, 01:03 PM   #6
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If you are getting pinch flats try running a higher tire pressure. I run pr2's and have never had a flat (nocks on wood). The other choice is to come to Northern Michigan were all the hills and none of the cars are plus we have the best roads.
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Old 06-04-09, 01:37 PM   #7
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I am living in Ann Arbor for a while, and have been consistently disappointed by the roads in the area. I've had bad luck with less expensive Continentals (ultra race?), but have been enjoying GP4000s, 23c, front and rear. They're pretty flat resistant, I can roll through broken glass with no problems, and they are supple enough to provide solid traction over frost heaves / cracking in the asphalt.
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Old 06-06-09, 08:22 PM   #8
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I haven't had many flats, but with my aluminum-framed bike I was tired of the jolting and buzzing over rough roads and ended up going to more of a hybrid-bike tire -- a 700x30 that I run at 85psi and really smooths out the ride. Surprisingly, I can't feel any difference in rolling resistance and am riding at the same speed as usual.

My bike is a Specialized Sequoia that has the clearance to run this tire, although I had to change out the brakes to a model that opens wide enough to let me get the wheel off without having to deflate the tire.
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Old 06-07-09, 08:35 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by "Fred" View Post
If you are getting pinch flats try running a higher tire pressure. I run pr2's and have never had a flat (nocks on wood). The other choice is to come to Northern Michigan were all the hills and none of the cars are plus we have the best roads.
It's a shame that Priority Health canceled the TdL and the Cycling Classics in Grand Rapids & Ann Arbor. I just got into road cycling late March and really looked forward to watching the GR event. I really hope it comes back in 2010, and then maybe I can participate in the TdL on a recreational basis

OP- As 'Road Fan' asked, what PSI are you running your tires? I've put about 300 miles on my Specialized Mondo Pros without a problem (knock on wood too), and am running them at about 100 PSI. Most of my riding buddies get pinch flats more than puncture flats.
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Old 06-07-09, 01:33 PM   #10
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I'm usually running at 110-120psi. I'm also 6'1" and 165lbs. I like the lithions, but they can't seem to take the pounding of these pothole littered roads. I'm going to pull the trigger on a pair of conit gatorskins 25c on Monday, hopefully.
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Old 06-09-09, 09:28 AM   #11
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I ride in the Detroit area on some horrible roads and run Continental GP 4000's. I'm 220 pounds and haven't had a pinch flat yet. I run them at 115 psi. make sure you are out of the saddle over the worst bumps and try not to ride on the dirty shoulders of the road.

Thanks, Mike.
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Old 06-11-09, 06:52 PM   #12
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I second Continental Ultra Gatorskins

They're perfect for these Michigan roads...
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