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27" tire question...

Old 07-01-15, 04:19 PM
  #1  
ButchA
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27" tire question...

I know you all have seen a bunch of photos of my '85 Fuji Del Rey that was my "Craigslist special" that I snagged from that college kid last month. You've all probably followed my story how I changed this out, changed that out, and made the bike my own. As far as serious LBS work, it needs nothing, as it's darn near in mint condition (probably was a "garage queen" for 20-25 years or so).

Anyway, the college kid had his LBS put on Kenda K161 'cross tires on and they work well. He rode the Fuji all over downtown Richmond, Virginia on cobblestone streets and stuff, and the steel framed Fuji and Kenda tires didn't mind it at all. Everything is still excellent and the wheels are true.

Here's a photo showing the added toe clips that I put on, but more importantly, look at the tires on the sides of the photo. The Kenda K161 tire does have some serious meat on it, being 27" x 1 3/8" gumwall. Max pressure is only 70 psi. It gives a real cushy comfortable ride.



My main question: Should I change them out with a more common 27" x 1 1/4" road tire? I don't see myself riding on cobblestone streets or going off road with the Fuji. I see myself going for 1/2 centuries and basic, laid back, touring type of riding. I don't care of the roadies in their modern Cervelo's and Specialized and Cannondales and whatnot blow passed me at 50 mph... I want to enjoy myself and enjoy the ride...

What do you think? Leave 'em on or swap them out?
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Old 07-01-15, 04:38 PM
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Swap 'em out for 27 x 1 1/4" Panaracer Pasela PTs.

They rule.
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Old 07-01-15, 04:47 PM
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About $8 from Niagara Cycle Works. Hate to think what the LBS charged. Probably a good choice for what he was doing, but it sounds like you need nice HP tires. Yup, Paselas.
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Old 07-01-15, 04:53 PM
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One more (predictable) vote for the 1-1/4" Paselas. Less work to ride and they'll probably measure close to those Kendas in width anyway.
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Old 07-01-15, 05:16 PM
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I agree. I have 27x1-1/4 Paselas on my Fuji and they're pretty much bomb-proof. A great all-around, go-anywhere tire.
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Old 07-01-15, 06:10 PM
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And the 1 1/8 Paselas are even better.
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Old 07-01-15, 06:16 PM
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My road bike had those exact same Kenda 27 x 1 3/8 tires on it. The knobs really make the bike slow and I did not go off road with it..........



I swapped with these white wall 27 x 1 1/4 Kenda tires with road tread and it made a huge difference.........





They are also available in black or gum wall.
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Old 07-01-15, 06:25 PM
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i use vittoria zaffiro's, with no problems riding chip and seal country roads. they are usually $8-10 cheaper than the paselas.
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Old 07-01-15, 06:58 PM
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Thanks guys... I really appreciate it!

Time to go pick up some Panaracer Paselas!
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Old 07-01-15, 07:50 PM
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Originally Posted by The Golden Boy View Post
Swap 'em out for 27 x 1 1/4" Panaracer Pasela PTs.
Wear out the Kendas first, then put on some Paselas.
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Old 07-01-15, 08:14 PM
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I'm a 'clyde' at 5'8" and 210#, and yet I still ride my 27"bikes with 1-1/8 tires. 90psi front, 100 rear. I like the Vittoria Zaffiro and the Paselas about the same. The Pasela TG (TourGuard) and other Kevlar-belted tires are stiffer and quite a bit heavier. Same goes for putting 'tire liners' in regular tires. The heavier rotating weight is noticeable on 20+-mile rides, but for a commuting tire they're great.
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Old 07-01-15, 08:20 PM
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Originally Posted by ButchA View Post
Thanks guys... I really appreciate it!

Time to go pick up some Panaracer Paselas!
Your bike will feel as if it's lost half of its weight. You will be pleased.
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Old 07-01-15, 08:52 PM
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Originally Posted by JohnDThompson View Post
Wear out the Kendas first, then put on some Paselas.
Thanks, and thanks everyone for all the great replies! I've read reviews on the Kenda K161 and people have said that they are a good tire and all, but they don't last on pavement. The knobs get ground down next to nothing in about 1000 miles, or possibly even less, when strictly riding on pavement. Wow...

I have no intentions of putting aero bars on and racing with the Fuji. I am as "old school" as the bike! I like long rides out in the country, out on the backroads, and checking out the scenery, all while getting in a nice ride and a good workout. A nice comfortable, basic, do anything, touring style of tire would be excellent.
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Old 07-02-15, 03:49 AM
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I recently installed a set of Schwalbe 27s on my Motobecane. Great tires, good on gravel or paved roads and nice enough looking, fitting reasonably well into the vintage bicycle picture (my opinion)...

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Old 07-02-15, 05:46 AM
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Originally Posted by rootboy View Post
And the 1 1/8 Paselas are even better.
And now the ONE, SINGLE time that rootboy has been clearly, demonstrably WRONG!!!



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Old 07-02-15, 06:18 AM
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Originally Posted by rootboy View Post
And the 1 1/8 Paselas are even better.
Agreed. The 27 x 1 1/4 Paselas are just too fat. Probably wider than the 1 3/8 Kendas you have now. I like the 1" Pasela tires even more.

Economy wise the Kenda 27 x 1 1/8 are great tires. Last set I bought were $25 shipped from Niagara Cycle.
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Old 07-02-15, 06:22 AM
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Originally Posted by rootboy View Post
And the 1 1/8 Paselas are even better.
What Scott said.

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Old 07-02-15, 06:27 AM
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The tandem had the 1 1/8 on it and it was a bit .... harsh. My wife's Raleigh mixte had the 1 1/4. I swapped and prefer the 1 1/4 on the tandem.
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Old 07-02-15, 07:51 AM
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Thanks again for all the great replies.

Thinking back about what I was saying about riding type, this is a photo I snapped yesterday when I was out on a 14 mile ride along the scenic road running parallel to the James River here in Richmond, VA. That's the style of riding that I like. Quiet back roads and scenery.



Look close at the Fuji. Yeah, it's 1985. But it's MINT! It most likely sat in the back of a garage for 20 years. If I remember right, the college kid said it was his dad's old bike new from '85. When the kid went to college, the dad gave him the bike to use. Now that the kid graduated, he didn't need it anymore and the dad didn't want it back. Long story short, I think I got a hell of a C&V bike off CL for $120 bucks. Everything is in excellent condition and it's dialed in perfect and needs nothing - except for a tire swap.

Swap outs/changes I have already done:
* Forte road/touring seat
* Rewrapped the bars with "natural" gel tape from REI
* Transit saddlebag
* Forte toe clips & straps
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Old 07-02-15, 09:03 AM
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I'll ride a '72 Miyata or circa 83 Univega when weekend riding with the wife, both bikes are joys. Those who haven't experienced the vintage steel on 27" wheels are missing something, they are wonderful rides...as long as you are not trying to stay with a pack avg. 18+mph. These old bikes are a perfect fit with quiet scenic road; though I still have a preference for lighter & thinner rubber, and that's not typically Paselas.
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Old 07-02-15, 10:49 AM
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I just mounted the folding version of the Paselas (630 x 28) on my Austro-Daimler Inter 10. Not cheap, but very nice.
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Old 07-02-15, 11:20 AM
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Greetings, looks like a great bike, however have you cleaned and greased (repacked) all the bearing sets: hubs, bottom bracket, pedals, and headset? After so many years, the original grease has dried out!
Cheers
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Old 07-02-15, 12:15 PM
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Originally Posted by skoda2 View Post
Greetings, looks like a great bike, however have you cleaned and greased (repacked) all the bearing sets: hubs, bottom bracket, pedals, and headset? After so many years, the original grease has dried out!
Cheers
Thanks... I haven't, but I did check. Believe me, I went all over the bike! I even used a flashlight and tiny flathead screwdriver to use as sort of a "probe". I think the LBS took care of things (again) when the college kid had the Kenda 'cross tires put on. Also, I assume(?) probably 4 years ago, the dad had the bike serviced, tweaked, overhauled, after sitting for so long before he gave it to his son for college.

I think that's why the bike was $150 in the CL ad. Both the college kid (and dad) wanted to recoup some of the cost, but I was able to barter and finagle the price down to $120. Normally, old classic bikes on eBay and/or CL are like $50 bucks or $75 at max. They need a TON of work. This '85 Fuji doesn't need anything, as it was already done by an LBS. Trust me... I looked... Nothing is dried out, nothing is corroded, etc... The bike is AMAZING for being 30 years old!

I just want to swap out the knobby Kenda K161 tires for something more road worthy but yet not harsh riding at 100 psi.

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Old 07-02-15, 04:56 PM
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I was intrigued when I saw a number of people mentioning 27" Zaffiros on this thread.

I Googled them and could only find them mentioned on a 2010 '.pdf' edition of the Vittoria tyre catalogue. They have an asterisk next to them, which signifies 'US market only'.

Drat! and double drat.!

Still, the Pasela PT's, Pasela TG's and those Schwalbe HS159's are freely available over here in Blighty, so it's not all bad news...
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Old 07-02-15, 05:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Fidbloke View Post
I was intrigued when I saw a number of people mentioning 27" Zaffiros on this thread.

I Googled them and could only find them mentioned on a 2010 '.pdf' edition of the Vittoria tyre catalogue. They have an asterisk next to them, which signifies 'US market only'.

Drat! and double drat.!
...
I have some. They wouldn't pass a check with Jan Heine's supplometer. The Paselas are nearly floppy by comparison. They were hard to mount too.
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