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  1. #1
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    Schwalbe Snow Stud vs. Marathon Winter

    Any opinions either way? The big problem here in STL is ice from compacted snow, compacted snow and black ice. Most of the time the roads are clear, though.

    The Marathon Winters are $65 each. The Snow Studs seem to run about $45-$50 each. It looks like the Marathon Winter is the better overall tire, I just don't if I can justify dropping an additional $40 for the set.
    Dave Lloyd
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    Weekend racer raccy's Avatar
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    Schwalbe Snow Studs

    I had a pair of the Schwalbe Snow Studs and they did not perform well. I had problems with the wire bead (separated from the tire) and the tire not staying on the rim. I now use the Schwalbe Ice Spikers and have had a good performance on black ice, packed snow, and clear road. Stay away from the Snow Studs. No info on the Marathons...
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    Thanks for the info.

    Honestly, I want to get the Nokians but the lack of a reflective sidewall and a dynamo strip (that ridged bit on the sidewall so your generator works better) is a real deal breaker for me.
    Dave Lloyd
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  4. #4
    DNPAIMFB pinkrobe's Avatar
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    I'm using the 700C Snow Stud with no issues, but I've never used the 26" version. The Ice Spiker worked great for the two seasons I used it. Very little wear, awesome traction.
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    madman
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    I have the nokian mount and ground up front an the schwalbe snow stud in the back, the nokian is miles better but the snow stud is ok for the back at low psi...wait till you fall hard an buy the nokians j/k

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    Senior Member Ziemas's Avatar
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    Does the Snow Stud have carbide studs? The Marathon does, and carbide studs are a must for any winter tire as they last much longer than regular steel studs.

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    madman
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ziemas View Post
    Does the Snow Stud have carbide studs? The Marathon does, and carbide studs are a must for any winter tire as they last much longer than regular steel studs.
    yes, carbide but IMO too far of center and only 120 studs

  8. #8
    Formerly Known as Newbie Juha's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dave.lloyd View Post
    Honestly, I want to get the Nokians but the lack of a reflective sidewall and a dynamo strip (that ridged bit on the sidewall so your generator works better) is a real deal breaker for me.
    I don't have any experience of dynamo strips, but I do have a Nokian W106 and a B&M bottle dynamo in front. It did require a bit of adjusting and testing and re-adjusting to get the dynamo running flawlessly, but after that I have not needed to touch it for several years.

    BTW, what is the idea with a dynamo strip? Less spring load needed to keep the dynamo firmly against the sidewall? Better traction between sidewall and dynamo? Durability?

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  9. #9
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    I believe that the idea of a dynamo strip is to improve traction with the dynamo. My dynamo has a plastic wheel that looks like a gear cog with very fine teeth. I believe that these mesh with the ridges on the dynamo strip to give the dynamo better traction against the tire.

    My commute is well lit so I can just use my battery powered 'be seen' light, but I like the idea of being able to use the dynamo if I need to.

    The thing that puzzles me most about the nokians is that there's no reflective sidewall. You'd think that in those safety conscious Nordic countries (I'm thinking Volvo here) that reflective sidewalls would come on everything, especially winter tires that would get used during those months where there's no daylight.
    Dave Lloyd
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  10. #10
    Hooligan Abneycat's Avatar
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    I tested out both the Snow stud and ended up buying the Ice Spikers, the Snow Stud didn't sit well with me at all. I wouldn't recommend these tires personally. Schwalbe's winter tires are all tungsten carbide studded, so they last and are of high quality. Ice Spikers are beautiful tires, but since they're expensive and without dynamo strips *or* reflective sidewalls, i'd look into the Marathons if you want those features.

    After looking at the Marathons, they seem like really nice tires, and i'd consider them for when the Ice Spikers give up. If they ever do.

  11. #11
    DNPAIMFB pinkrobe's Avatar
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    I have run into a problem with the Snow Studs - at higher pressures, the bead pops off the rim. I'm using Mavic Open Pro rims, and if I get past 45 psi, the tire pops off the rim. I have run into this problem with wire bead cyclocross tires as well, so I'm assuming that the rim is too narrow. What is everyone using for rims with their winter tires?
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    Hooligan Abneycat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pinkrobe View Post
    I have run into a problem with the Snow Studs - at higher pressures, the bead pops off the rim. I'm using Mavic Open Pro rims, and if I get past 45 psi, the tire pops off the rim. I have run into this problem with wire bead cyclocross tires as well, so I'm assuming that the rim is too narrow. What is everyone using for rims with their winter tires?
    When I tested the tires out, they were on Alex DM18 rims. I've used the Ice Spikers on the DM18's on my one mountain bike, which as far as I can tell the only difference is that mine are painted black. Also used them with the rims on my (1970s?) McKinley, which are almost 2 inches wide.

    The DM18s are almost too narrow for the Ice Spikers, but not over the edge. On the Snow Studs, I really think it was just an issue with the studs themselves. the spacing is really poor for ruts.

  13. #13
    Senior Member hockey's Avatar
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    I use the Snow studs on my Mountain bike. Work beautifully if you remember to lower the pressure on ice and compacted snow. Pump them up for clear roads. No problem with them popping off the Mavic rims. It took a while last year to have the confidence to ride on ice and compacted snow after a number of mishaps in earlier years. Now I just lower the pressure to 35 lbs or so and enjoy. They really stick and inspire confidence. Not too quick though!
    Hockey

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    DNPAIMFB pinkrobe's Avatar
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    Yah, I didn't have problems with the Ice Spikers on a 26" rim, but the Snow Studs seem to need a wider rim on 700C. I'll try some Sun CR18 - cheap + sturdy.
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    Quote Originally Posted by dave.lloyd View Post
    Thanks for the info.

    Honestly, I want to get the Nokians but the lack of a reflective sidewall and a dynamo strip (that ridged bit on the sidewall so your generator works better) is a real deal breaker for me.
    I'd advise getting a hub dynamo and going with the Nokians. In my experience, even with a dynamo strip, a bottle generator is unreliable in wet snow, even with frequent tinkering. One of my reasons for getting a hub dynamo was so that I could use Nokians. If you need more reflective material, you can wear a sash (as I do), or add reflective tape to the bike frame.

    I'm not anti-Schwalbe -- my Spring, Summer, and Fall tires are Marathon Plus. It's nice that they have a dynamo track and a reflective stripe, but hardly essential.

    Paul

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    I'd love to get a hub dynamo. Unfortunately, that's an extra $250. I'm trying to keep it a bit cheap right now.

    I imagine that eventually I'll get a hub dynamo, but just not right now. My bike, a Trek L200, came with all the geegaws already on it so I'd prefer to use 'em until the break.

    All in all, I think I'm going to go with the Marathon Winters. aebike.com should be getting them the first week of December.

    Thanks to everyone for the advice and opinions!
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    Senior Member Ziemas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pinkrobe View Post
    I have run into a problem with the Snow Studs - at higher pressures, the bead pops off the rim. I'm using Mavic Open Pro rims, and if I get past 45 psi, the tire pops off the rim. I have run into this problem with wire bead cyclocross tires as well, so I'm assuming that the rim is too narrow. What is everyone using for rims with their winter tires?
    Mavic A719 and a Salsa Delgado.

  18. #18
    DNPAIMFB pinkrobe's Avatar
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    ^^^^ Cool - the CR18s are almost that wide. They should work better than the Open Pros.
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  19. #19
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    How are these tires if the roadways are eventually plowed or the weather warms during the day and they mostly cleared of snow/ice/slush?
    Are the studs exceptionally slippery against the hard asphalt or are they OK for limited use?

  20. #20
    Senior Member diesel_dad's Avatar
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    I bought the Marathon Winters. I will mount them this weekend and give it a try. Look good in theory.

  21. #21
    impressive member badhat's Avatar
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    i have 700c snow studs that i used all last winter and i found tehy worked great. they key, as mentioend here, is to deflate them for ice, and inflate them when its clean and dry.

  22. #22
    DNPAIMFB pinkrobe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pajaro View Post
    How are these tires if the roadways are eventually plowed or the weather warms during the day and they mostly cleared of snow/ice/slush?
    Are the studs exceptionally slippery against the hard asphalt or are they OK for limited use?
    The tires are fine on dry pavement. They're a bit loud, but I kind of like the sound. The only drawback I see would be taking a corner at speed, such that you have to lean the bike over a lot. If you're on a very smooth, very hard surface [polished concrete], there's a chance you will lose traction. The same thing would happen with knobbies though.
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  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by diesel_dad View Post
    I bought the Marathon Winters. I will mount them this weekend and give it a try. Look good in theory.
    Where did you get your tires? I've only seen them at Peter White and Calhoon Cycles. AE Bike tells me that they'll be in there the first week of December.
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  24. #24
    Senior Member diesel_dad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dave.lloyd View Post
    Where did you get your tires? I've only seen them at Peter White and Calhoon Cycles. AE Bike tells me that they'll be in there the first week of December.
    My LBS was able to pick them up from the manufacturer same day! But their North American warehouse is also in Victoria BC, so I am spoiled.

  25. #25
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    I used the snow studs last year. When they are at max pressure the studs do not contact the ground. I fell last year because the roads were clear but I hit a patch of ice. This year I'm using tires that have the studs at the center of the tire - just in case.

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