Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Silver Spring, MD (MABRA/MAC)
Bikes: Cannondale Cyclocross, Specialized Langster, Giant TCR-C2 Composite
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I'm not sure what the gravel is like in your neck of the woods, but here in Washington DC, we have gravel on the Capital Mall from the Washington Monument to the Capitol Building. It's a long stretch that I regularly blast through on my CX bike, using 30cc Ritchey Speedmax's jammed to 90psi. The gravel here has a firm base with small to medium pebbles, and my tire setup handles it fine. Reality is that there are many tires out there, and I prefer the Ritchey's not just for their light weight and low rolling resistance, but also because being able to inflate them to 90psi versus just 70psi as is the case with my Hutchinson allows me more options with what I want to do with the tires.
Also, there are no real CX-specific rims, but rims like the Mavic Open Pros and the Kyseriums seem to find much favor with the CX racers. In fact, you'll see CXers racing with the same blingy deep-dish carbon rims that roadies use. I would reccomend going through your local bike shop, and try to find the employee who is most CX knowledgabe, and find out from them. I did that when I got my Ritcheys, and had my LBS check to make sure that my Gippiemme rims could hadle the higher psi rating of the tires.