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Gatorskins

Old 01-09-19, 02:02 PM
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mynewnchome
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Gatorskins

Just put a set on yesterday...long story short, I think I would sell the bike before going through that again....LOL. Tightest tires I have ever installed. Brute force won out but it came with a lot of bad words and stress.

Never had them before, let me see what the hype is all about.
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Old 01-09-19, 02:27 PM
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fietsbob 
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Its a mesh layer toughening the sidewalls.. I've used their trekking travel contact in 559-47..
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Old 01-09-19, 02:56 PM
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texbiker
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Some rims are harder than others. I have a set of carbon rims and they go on with above average effort and a set of aluminum rims that require Herculean effort. You might try some soapy water next time.
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Old 01-09-19, 03:19 PM
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jimc101
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Gatorskins are a love or hate tire, have used them in the past, and found didn't think they were any better than others I was using at the time, and worse for puncture resistance/wet cornering, then again, some people love them, each to their own. Personally, would never buy them again.
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Old 01-09-19, 09:20 PM
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zacster
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The trick to mounting Gatorskins, and any other tight tire, is to have the bead in the center channel of the rim opposite from the final mounting point, and to have that mounting point at 90 degrees to the valve. This gives the maximum reach of the tire without the valve getting in the way. Mine go on easily this way but are almost impossible to get on when going opposite the valve with the last bit.
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Old 01-09-19, 09:51 PM
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. Tightest tires I have ever installed. Brute force won out but it came with a lot of bad words and stress.
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Old 01-09-19, 10:57 PM
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CliffordK
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Hmmm...

What rim are you using?

Most manufacturers are moving towards "Tubeless Ready" rims... I.E. Pain in the rear for anything other than tubeless.

I had an Ultegra WH-6800 rim that I utterly failed getting a Schwalbe Pro One installed on with a tube (emergency at a truck stop in the rain).

I just tried installing a Gator Hardshell onto an Ultegra WH-6700 rim. It was rather a pain to install, but I managed it with just fingers and no tools.

A couple of things:
  1. Traditionally, I always installed the valve first and worked away from the valve. For the Tubeless ready rims, it is much better to start opposite the valve, and work towards the valve, installing the valve last. When you get to the valve, pop the tire on, then push the valve up to allow the tire to seat around it.
  2. Keep working the tire down into the channel on the opposite side, and keep working the tire.
I probably should practice more, but inevitably the tire will loosen up on the road, and I always have tools for backups.

Oh, one thing about the Continental Gator style tires. I have a practice to drag my fingers around the tire to straighten the valve. This will prematurely damage the sidewalls... so work on getting the valve right while installing the tire.
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Old 01-10-19, 08:36 AM
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As 3alarmer showed I carry a Kool Stop Tire Jack (cut the handle down a bit shorter) for the first hundred miles or so then they can come off and on w/o too much trouble. Also as said rims make a big difference especially the ones sold as "tubeless ready" must be avoided. I have arthritis in my hands so am very sensitive to difficult mounting.
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Old 01-10-19, 09:03 AM
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Not a fan

I had a set of g'skins a while ago and did not like them. I found they were lacking in puncture protection and had a bit of a rough ride. I have thought of rying them again
But have not. Their are Conti's that I like and I use their tunes most of the time.
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Old 01-10-19, 09:11 AM
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I've installed two sets on Campy rims with no problems, only using a quik stik tire lever to help. The hard part is the last few inches. The ride is on the rough side, but dropping the tire pressure by 5-10 psi helps. I'm using them for my winter bike now, but I originally bought them, thinking that the new area where I'm riding might have goatheads and wanted some extra protection. The tires do wear much slower than the Michelin Pro 4 tires that I use most often.
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Old 01-10-19, 09:18 AM
  #11  
djb
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Originally Posted by mynewnchome View Post
Just put a set on yesterday...long story short, I think I would sell the bike before going through that again....LOL. Tightest tires I have ever installed. Brute force won out but it came with a lot of bad words and stress.

Never had them before, let me see what the hype is all about.
its not the tires, its the rim. Ive used gatorskins for years and years and they are not overly hard to put on with the rims Ive put them on.

**Also, watch this video to get the concept of giving yourself those extra crucial mm's that makes putting any tire on easier, and even if you dont use old straps, using your hands and pushing the tire into the middle of the rim as you go around will gain that bit that can make all the difference from being near impossible to doable, although good tire irons always help.

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