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Tires: Need a to find a perfect balance road/off road

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Tires: Need a to find a perfect balance road/off road

Old 06-20-09, 07:42 PM
  #1  
vtx
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Tires: Need a to find a perfect balance road/off road

I am looking to find a better "hybrid" if you will tire for my mountain bike. I been doing more road biking with the bike and off road. Looking for a tire with little drag but with some tread / durability to it that I won't have to worry about flat often. Budget is around $30 a tire. Anyone have a recommendation?

Friend of mine has a set of Vittoria Randonneur Cross. He likes them for the most part.
https://www.rei.com/product/709111

My Bike: 2003 Trek Fuel 98
My Tires wheels ...
Hubs Bontrager Race Lite
Rims Bontrager Race Lite Tubeless, 20-hole/24-hole
Tires some knobby Kenda's but stock was - 26 x 2.00" Bontrager Super X Tubeless
Spoke Brand Stainless steel, 14ga. (2.0mm) straight gauge
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Old 06-20-09, 07:46 PM
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Old 06-21-09, 03:28 PM
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Originally Posted by vtx View Post
I am looking to find a better "hybrid" if you will tire for my mountain bike. I been doing more road biking with the bike and off road. Looking for a tire with little drag but with some tread / durability to it that I won't have to worry about flat often. Budget is around $30 a tire. Anyone have a recommendation?

Friend of mine has a set of Vittoria Randonneur Cross. He likes them for the most part.
https://www.rei.com/product/709111

My Bike: 2003 Trek Fuel 98
My Tires wheels ...
Hubs Bontrager Race Lite
Rims Bontrager Race Lite Tubeless, 20-hole/24-hole
Tires some knobby Kenda's but stock was - 26 x 2.00" Bontrager Super X Tubeless
Spoke Brand Stainless steel, 14ga. (2.0mm) straight gauge
First, a snarky comment: That's a rather expensive, full-suspension, race-oriented mountain bike. Are you confident it's a good idea to change out the MTB tires, compromising its ability on the trail, instead of just getting another bike better oriented for the road in the first place? That full suspension is going to sap efficiency on the road no matter what you do (though I admit that smoother and skinnier tires will make a big difference). With some time looking around, for your $60 tire budget you may be able to score a vintage road bike that will feel better on the road than your nice trail bike ever will.

To answer your question:

The catch will be the tubeless rims. It looks like people have had trouble getting tires on/off your rimset:

https://www.mtbr.com/cat/tires-and-wh...70_157crx.aspx

As I understand it, tubeless rims can accept normal clinchers with tubes. If you succeed in getting past the installation/removal difficulties, any not-too-knobby ISO 559 tire will do fine. Your friend's Vittoria tires look fine, though I don't have experience with them. I've had good experiences with Panaracer's offerings, among which this is a standard:

https://www.ebikestop.com/panaracer_p...ead-TR2260.php

Finally, I'd like to comment that Kevlar belting goes a long way toward avoiding flats. Your friend's Vittorias have Kevlar belting, and the ones I listed do as well. I'm not certain from your post whether you still want to do trails on your new, smoother tires, but tires with little to no tread are excellent in terms of grip and efficiency on the road.

Good luck!
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Old 06-21-09, 05:09 PM
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Thanks for the replies.

FlyCrash: I got the bike used for a fair price. The current tires have way too much drag for the type of riding I will be doing 90% of the time. I'm not going to throw them away, if there comes a time when I know I'll be using them then I'll switch them back on, simple as that. As for the the rear suspension absorbing energy, my rear suspension has a lock out which gives it a more hard tail experience. I doubt I could find any road bike for $60 that doesn't need money to be put into it. I rather put the money in 1 bike.

I sold my Trek 2100 because it was just too limited in where I could go. You feel any bump, look for things in the road, try to stay away from any imperfection in the road, actively avoid any spot where the blacktop ends. If I drive 80% road and 20% dirt during my ride I take the mountain bike over a road bike any day. I want 1 bike I can do most anything with, I may be slower using more energy on the road but I can take that shortcut through the unfinished housing track to save some time.

Thanks for the advice and links, I'll check them out.
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Old 06-21-09, 08:38 PM
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https://www.conti-tyres.co.uk/conticycle/ti%20travel%20contact.shtml
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Old 06-22-09, 08:03 AM
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Originally Posted by vtx View Post
I doubt I could find any road bike for $60 that doesn't need money to be put into it. I rather put the money in 1 bike.
You are probably right. $60 will typically get you a fixer-upper. However, with luck and patience it would be rideable at $60 and spread out the repairs/upgrades over a fairly long period. Now, if you want only one bike for reasons of space or aesthetics or just avoiding the slippery slope of bike collecting, that's your call. You are right to look to tires as the single most cost-effective way to "roadify" your MTB.

Originally Posted by vtx View Post
I sold my Trek 2100 because it was just too limited in where I could go. You feel any bump, look for things in the road, try to stay away from any imperfection in the road, actively avoid any spot where the blacktop ends. If I drive 80% road and 20% dirt during my ride I take the mountain bike over a road bike any day. I want 1 bike I can do most anything with, I may be slower using more energy on the road but I can take that shortcut through the unfinished housing track to save some time.
I agree that a road racing bike verges on useless for practical riding. I've test-ridden a friend's twitchy titanium racing bike with 25mm tires, and I know what you mean. Maybe I wasn't clear that I meant a road riding bike, not road racing bike, something like my 1974 Raleigh Sports 3-speed. I don't own a car and get around on Chicago's ghastly pothole-filled streets with that bike, and it is wonderful. No dirt path in the city has yet discouraged me or given me any problems, and with 37mm tires it feels only barely less efficient than that titanium roadie (albeit much heavier). I wouldn't take it on technical single-track, but that's what your MTB is for.
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Old 06-22-09, 08:09 AM
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I have heard good things about the aforementioned Kendas, but I have these cheap Geax tires that I believe have the similar tread as their ultra hard pack racing tire so it rolls really smoothly. I use it for commuting and picked it up for $12 each. it is 1.95 and the bead (wire) was relatively skinny so mounting was easy.

I went and looked at it - its the Easy Rider.
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Old 06-22-09, 08:41 AM
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Something like this would probably be best, it depends on your trail types, but a slick style tire with knobs on the sides will give you some more bite in muddy and sandy situations while keeping your rolling resistance on the pavement to a minimum.

That all being said, I do something similar with my bike and have tires more on the knobby side, a little extra effort is a small price to pay to be able to get through bad conditions when you need to. I run a smoke/dart combo by panaracer, of course they are 2.1s.... but keep the PSI up and they ride fine on the roads for my tastes.

https://www.bikeradar.com/gear/catego...rt-tyres-31780
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Old 06-22-09, 09:13 AM
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Generally, if it's good on a trail, it sucks on the road, and visa versa. There are compromises, but why bother.

if 80% of your riding is on road, just buy slicks, and if you want to head off road, just do it. You won't have quite the traction as a pair of nice knobby mtb tires, but you can still have a fun ride.
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Old 06-22-09, 09:45 AM
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^ That is true. I just took my road bike off road this morning just for the heck of it.
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Old 06-22-09, 10:07 AM
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You might want to take a look at Kenda Kosmac Light II's.

Not very good in mud or wet leaves but most else ok.
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Old 06-22-09, 11:00 AM
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Back when I was a one-bike-having on/off road rider, I got a second wheelset.

$150 plus shipping gets you one:

https://www.pricepoint.com/detail/132...-Lite-Rims.htm

plus

https://www.pricepoint.com/detail/168...sette-2009.htm
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Old 06-22-09, 12:24 PM
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two suggestions

GEAX street runner in the 26 X 1.6. This is the narrowest tire that I have used for riding both pavement and gravel, which I do almost every time I ride.

Michelin city comes in 26 X 1.8 and 26 X 1.4. The 1.8s are great cross over, the 1.4s I would use if I hardly ever left the pavement.

The only time you really need much tread pattern is in sand or mud. A little tread pattern is nice on wet pavement. The Michelin City works pretty well for that.
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Old 06-22-09, 12:52 PM
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I run Specialized Hemispheres on my full hard Trek 8000. They roll nicely on pavement and have enough tread to let me ride trail with confidence. Worth looking at.
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Old 06-22-09, 05:21 PM
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Originally Posted by sedges View Post
GEAX street runner in the 26 X 1.6. This is the narrowest tire that I have used for riding both pavement and gravel, which I do almost every time I ride.
Cmon, live a little. I used to take my fixed gear with slick 28's on cyclocross trails all the time. not just hardpack either, I sloughed through some thick mud on that thing. It's kinda like being on rollers, even though you're pedaling, you don't actually go anywhere.

OK, it was hard, but some of the most fun I've had on a bike

Last edited by fuzz2050; 06-22-09 at 05:21 PM. Reason: substantive typo
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Old 06-22-09, 05:51 PM
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^ Yea that is fun. I took my road bike with 23s on a trail today. Wet leaves, mud, and roots. Very fun. Then got a mouthful of dirt when I took a swig from my bottle.
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Old 06-22-09, 05:52 PM
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Originally Posted by LesterOfPuppets View Post
Back when I was a one-bike-having on/off road rider, I got a second wheelset.

$150 plus shipping gets you one:

https://www.pricepoint.com/detail/132...-Lite-Rims.htm

plus

https://www.pricepoint.com/detail/168...sette-2009.htm
You can even go cheaper and get the Deore hubs or the M510s. They are both decent.
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