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Recreational Cyclocross and Gravelbiking This has to be the most physically intense sport ever invented. It's high speed bicycle racing on a short off road course or riding the off pavement rides on gravel like :The Dirty Kanza". We also have a dedicated Racing forum for the Cyclocross Hard Core Racers.

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Old 08-02-07, 12:45 PM   #1
baconandraisins
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Cyclocross Tires?

What's the minimum width for a tire in order to be effective in racing? I have a frame that doesn't have a whole lot of rear clearance, and I'd like to get into cross racing (in SE Virginia, if that affects anything-- not a whole lot of mud, more grass and packed dirt it seems). How wide do I need, and do people have favorite tires on the narrow side of things?
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Old 08-02-07, 01:05 PM   #2
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The thinest I've seen are 30's. Most are 32-35.
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Old 08-02-07, 08:47 PM   #3
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My Vitorria Cross XN's are 32's but measure about 28. Dry conditions tires though.
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Old 08-02-07, 10:43 PM   #4
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28s work fine in the dry for a fast course.

Ron
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Old 08-03-07, 11:34 AM   #5
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32s are pretty nice. The wider the tire, the more cush it is across the bumpy stuff. Smoothing out the bumps translates into faster. So if you're > 185 pounds, go with 34. Otherwise, go with 32. However, tire width won't mean much if you don't ride with the pressure as low as you can go.
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Old 08-03-07, 12:03 PM   #6
baconandraisins
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Thanks all... I'm about 170 lbs. so it sounds like I can get by with something narrow.
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Old 08-03-07, 04:19 PM   #7
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I'm going to piggyback off of this and ask: what is a good 'cross tire? For mud? For dry conditions? For snowy/icy/sloppy conditions?

I can go up to 34 with room (don't want to go bigger) so recommend brand, style AND size at your will!
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Old 08-03-07, 04:27 PM   #8
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I rode Vittoria Cross XN 32C clinchers last year on a Surly Steamroller with caliper brakes. They seemed to roll really nice over grass and dirt, nice traction on dry stuff, and I never pinch-flatted even with pressures at the low end of the range, so this year I'm getting a pair of the XG tread in 34C.

The tread wears very quickly, though, so save them for racing.
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Old 08-03-07, 04:30 PM   #9
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I have found Bontrager Jones CX tires to be a good all rounder clincher. Not sure if they go to 28 but they do have a 30. BTW often times these measurements look vastly different between the brands of tires. If you are thinking of getting new wheels too then tubular is the way to go in cyclocross racing. Tufo is a fine brand and My current favourittes are Griffo 34's.
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