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To Tubular or Not To Tubular, that is the question.

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To Tubular or Not To Tubular, that is the question.

Old 08-15-18, 02:28 PM
  #51  
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I can almost sympathize with not carrying a spare tire, but I carry a spare tube anyway so the difference isn't that much but changing a flat is.
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Old 08-15-18, 02:35 PM
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I have a few higher end ikes with them and I leave as they are original. But for a daily type rider it's a hassle. Takes only a few minutes to change clincher, no mess, no fuss and cheap tubes. That outweighs any weight benefit to me.
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Old 08-15-18, 03:02 PM
  #53  
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To all you guys who ride tubular tires and recommend them, I take off my helmet and bow. Very cool! Please cover your eyes and ears now, because I have no wish to offend anyone.

To the OP: clinchers. How far from home do you think you'll be willing to ride, if you're afraid you may be walking home? Nuts to that.
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Old 08-15-18, 03:03 PM
  #54  
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I'd be curious to hear people's opinions about the cheaper tubular options. You can get clinchers like the GP 4000S II for half the price of a top quality tubular. Do $40 tubulars offer a better ride than the GP 4000S II? Honestly, I'm not entirely convinced that my $80 tubulars ride significantly better. There's still the weight consideration, I suppose. A 700x23 GP4000S II plus a standard tube weighs about 300 grams, very similar to the YJ tires. A light tubular rim is probably 50-100 grams lighter than the typical clincher rims I use, but I've got tubular rims (Mavic Mach 2 CD 2) that are heavier than any clincher rim I'd use, so the weight advantage is not necessarily a given.

I see though that I've gotten off track from my original question, because I don't ride 23mm clinchers. Whenever possible I ride 28s or wider, but I'm not aware of any really cheap options for 27-28mm tubulars. Sometimes I go as narrow as 25. So I'd like to know how the ride of a 700x22 tubular would compare to a good 700x25 clincher. I'm not just asking to debate. It's a practical question. I've got a set of wheels with Fiamme red label rims -- nice and light -- and I've been thinking about getting an inexpensive set of tubulars to throw on these to have as a back up for when my more expensive 700x28 tubulars are acting up, or (more likely to be honest) I could use these wheels to build another bike. Is this worth considering or should I just spend more for the wide tires I really prefer?
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Old 08-15-18, 05:21 PM
  #55  
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Originally Posted by Andy_K View Post
I'd be curious to hear people's opinions about the cheaper tubular options. You can get clinchers like the GP 4000S II for half the price of a top quality tubular.
I'm a Tufo fan and like the S33Pro 24 - totally bulletproof and ride them down to the casing. They ride about the same as a gatorskin clincher (or gatorskin tubular for that matter) despite the bad press. Generally can be had for $30 and a rear lasts me 1500 miles. Weight is 310g. Two sets so far and I had one slow leak once, put in some sealant and that was that. I have them on my weight weenie trek 700 (19 lbs) and have no issues with the ride they produce.

A couple club riders I know (on expensive plastic bikes) keep going back to the Tufo Hi-Carbon - for durability - although these guys use the tape. There's nothing like the old school joy of getting covered in Tubasti.

I've tried a set of Tufo Elite and they are a bit more plush than the S33s - the elites have high thread count. I have a Elite S3 25 on deck - those are 265g and a high thread count.

I inherited a set of Vittoria Corsa Race tires- clearly these are really nice tires, - there isn't much to them and I picked up a small wire on the first ride and that was that one ride - one flat - Done!

Merlin is blowing out vittoria pave 27s for $40 and I've picked up 7 tires - the 27 measures about 25 and they are really nice (although I'm not sure I could tell the difference between them and the Tufos because the bikes are totally different). I'm riding them now on my plastic bike with plastic rims - good luck for about 1000 miles. Not much risk trying these out. The pave's have a huge reputation.

I want to make a point about weights. You will save about a pound with tubular rims. Either low profile carbon or araya aero 4 (which I've been hording because I like them so much) are 300 grams. Most clinchers are 500, there's a pound right there. Probably another quarter pound saving on the tube and etc.

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Old 08-15-18, 06:53 PM
  #56  
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Originally Posted by jcb3 View Post
I inherited a set of Vittoria Corsa Race tires- clearly these are really nice tires, - there isn't much to them and I picked up a small wire on the first ride and that was that one ride - one flat - Done!
This, in one line, is the primary reason I have reservations about expensive tubulars.

I appreciate the other info, though. There are definitely a couple of appealing options there.

Originally Posted by jcb3 View Post
I want to make a point about weights. You will save about a pound with tubular rims. Either low profile carbon or araya aero 4 (which I've been hording because I like them so much) are 300 grams. Most clinchers are 500, there's a pound right there. Probably another quarter pound saving on the tube and etc.
I think this is an overstatement. Here's what I'll grant: "You will could save about a pound with expensive or hard to find tubular rims versus cheap clincher rims." A lot of modern clincher rims are in the 420 to 460 gram range. I don't know what weights are typical for non-carbon tubular rims, but the ones I've happened across have been between 390 and 500 grams. The 1986 Campagnolo rim catalog, where I find the 445g Epsilon Strada Oxide rims I used with my De Rosa, offers one 330g rim with the rest coming in between 380g and 465g. I'm not disputing that the weight saving you cite are possible. You really can't get an alloy clincher rim I'd feel confident using that's under 400g. I'm just not convinced those savings are typical for people who aren't going out of their way for light rims and tires. As for tubes etc, I could get 50g tubes if I chose to. My experience is that before you add weight for the tube top quality clinchers are a bit lighter than similar quality tubulars, arguably making up the 50g for the tube. Then you have the weight of sealant in your tubulars. I'd call that a wash.
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Old 08-15-18, 07:06 PM
  #57  
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What else is there?
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Old 08-15-18, 09:15 PM
  #58  
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Originally Posted by Andy_K View Post
I'd be curious to hear people's opinions about the cheaper tubular options. You can get clinchers like the GP 4000S II for half the price of a top quality tubular. Do $40 tubulars offer a better ride than the GP 4000S II? Honestly, I'm not entirely convinced that my $80 tubulars ride significantly better. There's still the weight consideration, I suppose. A 700x23 GP4000S II plus a standard tube weighs about 300 grams, very similar to the YJ tires. A light tubular rim is probably 50-100 grams lighter than the typical clincher rims I use, but I've got tubular rims (Mavic Mach 2 CD 2) that are heavier than any clincher rim I'd use, so the weight advantage is not necessarily a given.

I see though that I've gotten off track from my original question, because I don't ride 23mm clinchers. Whenever possible I ride 28s or wider, but I'm not aware of any really cheap options for 27-28mm tubulars. Sometimes I go as narrow as 25. So I'd like to know how the ride of a 700x22 tubular would compare to a good 700x25 clincher. I'm not just asking to debate. It's a practical question. I've got a set of wheels with Fiamme red label rims -- nice and light -- and I've been thinking about getting an inexpensive set of tubulars to throw on these to have as a back up for when my more expensive 700x28 tubulars are acting up, or (more likely to be honest) I could use these wheels to build another bike. Is this worth considering or should I just spend more for the wide tires I really prefer?
I think that's a fair assessment of the tubular vs clincher economics of the present day. See my post #34 for the way it was in my view BITD. There simply weren't clinchers like the GP4000SII, and even the cheapest training sew ups were faster rolling and longer lasting than the best clinchers. There weren't a lot of width options. Frankly it was almost never specified. You could get cyclocross tires, and those were wide, but obviously not much use on the road. Clement had the Paris Roubaix and Campionato del Mondo's, but those were out of my budget. I guess in the early 70s there was more of a variety of fat 'touring' sew ups, but that was before my time.

AFA the weight difference, let's go back to what I rode circa early 80s. For training, Fiamme red was the most popular. Cheap and good enough. About 350g IIRC. Rigidas 1320 were about 480 grams I believe. I used both and would say subjectively they're reasonably equivalent WRT durability, but if anything the Fiamme reds had the edge for toughness.

Tires - a typical training tubular was 290g. Let's say you get a 'fancy' training clincher like the Touring Turbo. It's 235g plus lets say realistically 125g for a tube. So 70g more. (130g + 70g) x 2 = 400g. Pretty close to a pound.

IMO it's between your estimate and that of jcb3, but really closer to jcb3.

The sew up rims you mention are mid to late 80s types from when it became fashionable to run 'heavy' rims with 32 spokes. Before that everyone used 36h for general riding.

It's a bit of a moot point today because you can't really buy light 36h tubular rims. There's only a couple aluminum tubular rims that I'm aware of, and they are of the 400g+ variety optimized for low spoke counts. So let's say you get some HED rims and they're about 40g lighter than the equivalent clincher rim. And you use conti sprinter tub at 275g vs a GP4000SII at 235g + 100g (for a light tube). Now the formulation is (40g x 60g) x 2 = 100g. Not nothing, and worth it for the pros, but not nearly the same difference as it was in yesteryear.
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Old 08-16-18, 12:09 AM
  #59  
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There is still an abundant supply of old and light tubular rims. At least abundant compared to the number of those of us who use them. The problem with the old and light rims is that they simply cannot be built into 130mm OLD wheels. The right/left tension differential tears them apart. If it can be built at all it doesn't last long. Minor exceptions for rims like Mavic SSC and good luck finding that. The never-common Araya ADX4 mentioned above was one tough rim, not sure if that would work or not and pretty sure I would not be the test pilot on that. So you only get the pleasure of the light rim if you are ready to ride 120 and 126 wheels with 5 and 6 speed freewheels. Or you can reserve the light rim for the front wheel only. I am not worried I will convince anyone to try this and diminish available stocks of good old rims.

If your idea of good, light, reasonably price tubular is Conti Sprinter or Tufo you might as well use good clinchers. Those are just stiff and dead compared to either historic tubulars or current race quality tubulars. I'm on 27-30mm tubulars from Vittoria, Challenge, Schwalbe and haven't paid over $50 yet. Which you can easily pay for good clinchers. No way are current tubulars as light as historic tubulars and no way do they flat as routinely as historic tubulars. Since they use better and better protected inner tubes they flat a lot less than clinchers.

Back in 80s I did mostly ride clinchers except when racing. My experience of the Wolbers was they blew out in 100 miles or less. Tried them at every pressure and never made them work at all. Even buying them in bundles for $6 or $8 each was not worth it. What did work was the well nigh universal Vittoria CX, which was $40 back then, in 1980s money. Never got used to the skinnyness of those tires and never forgot the wide tires of the 60s and 70s. Very belatedly I learned about the cheap and good Panaracer tubulars. Those were great and very few ever used them before they were gone. So I did roll up big miles on the Specialized Turbo/S clincher that Salamandrine mentions. Mostly it was the 700x32 flavor, which was a whopping 26mm wide on a 22mm Super Champion rim. Narrower on Rigida or Mavic rims. The 700x28 was about 23.5, again on the relatively wide rim. Recently I had a 1977 Touring Turbo in 700x28, preserved and mounted on a Weinmann concave rim. As a new and unused tire it was only 22.6 wide. Pumped it up and rode it around the block. Just as horrible as remembered. The ride was not nearly as good as current production unbelted Paselas. Not even close. In current production tires you'd have to go to Walmart to find something that rode as bad. But there was nothing better. Incrementally better tires, say a Michelin Hi-Lite, were seized on when they appeared. Time went by and the clinchers kept getting better.

Tubulars are about the ride. You want the ride or you don't. Current clinchers are really quite good. It wasn't until late 90s that clinchers had a ride I'd rate as acceptable. A new Compass or Vittoria Corsa G clincher is a very good tire. Conti GP4000IIs is still stiffer than what I want to ride but it is a good tire and it gets better as you go faster. No clincher rides like a good tubular and no clincher rim could ever ride as good as an old light flat section tubular rim.
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Old 08-16-18, 12:27 AM
  #60  
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For a bottle full of water.

Originally Posted by Salamandrine View Post
I think that's a fair assessment of the tubular vs clincher economics of the present day. See my post #34 for the way it was in my view BITD. There simply weren't clinchers like the GP4000SII, and even the cheapest training sew ups were faster rolling and longer lasting than the best clinchers. There weren't a lot of width options. Frankly it was almost never specified. You could get cyclocross tires, and those were wide, but obviously not much use on the road. Clement had the Paris Roubaix and Campionato del Mondo's, but those were out of my budget. I guess in the early 70s there was more of a variety of fat 'touring' sew ups, but that was before my time.

AFA the weight difference, let's go back to what I rode circa early 80s. For training, Fiamme red was the most popular. Cheap and good enough. About 350g IIRC. Rigidas 1320 were about 480 grams I believe. I used both and would say subjectively they're reasonably equivalent WRT durability, but if anything the Fiamme reds had the edge for toughness.

Tires - a typical training tubular was 290g. Let's say you get a 'fancy' training clincher like the Touring Turbo. It's 235g plus lets say realistically 125g for a tube. So 70g more. (130g + 70g) x 2 = 400g. Pretty close to a pound.

IMO it's between your estimate and that of jcb3, but really closer to jcb3.

The sew up rims you mention are mid to late 80s types from when it became fashionable to run 'heavy' rims with 32 spokes. Before that everyone used 36h for general riding.

It's a bit of a moot point today because you can't really buy light 36h tubular rims. There's only a couple aluminum tubular rims that I'm aware of, and they are of the 400g+ variety optimized for low spoke counts. So let's say you get some HED rims and they're about 40g lighter than the equivalent clincher rim. And you use conti sprinter tub at 275g vs a GP4000SII at 235g + 100g (for a light tube). Now the formulation is (40g x 60g) x 2 = 100g. Not nothing, and worth it for the pros, but not nearly the same difference as it was in yesteryear.
I think it is important to remember a bottle of water weighs more than a pound. On or off your bike a full bottle moves the weight weenie equation back and forward 20 years. Weight hampers acceleration and climbing not cruising - which unless you are on the velodrome constitutes 99 % of any ride. In fact momentum and reduced road shock argues for more weight.

Broadman's hour record is 35 miles on a 20 lb bike for instance.

Even more damning is the weight of the engine. Froome is 6 2 and weighs less than 140 lb. Wiggins 6 4 and 140 the big Sagan the same as Wiggo. Even the muscle men are under 150 lbs. Those guys need to accelerate from 30 mph to 50 mph in 30 yards after riding 150 miles (at a nice gentle 26 mph) They win or lose on who carries their one pound bottle of water and the least flex on their BB - that is for sure.

But IMHO unless you are over 6 foot, under150 pounds and can grind out 400 watts for 4 hours - day in day out - I don't believe the weight of Tubs and modern clinchers is a relevant consideration when Average Joe decides on whether to be or not to be a tubby tub rider like me.

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Old 08-16-18, 01:30 AM
  #61  
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Originally Posted by Johno59 View Post
I think it is important to remember a bottle of water weighs more than a pound. On or off your bike a full bottle moves the weight weenie equation back and forward 20 years. Weight hampers acceleration and climbing not cruising - which unless you are on the velodrome constitutes 99 % of any ride. In fact momentum and reduced road shock argues for more weight.

Broadman's hour record is 35 miles on a 20 lb bike for instance.

Even more damning is the weight of the engine. Froome is 6 2 and weighs less than 140 lb. Wiggins 6 4 and 140 the big Sagan the same as Wiggo. Even the muscle men are under 150 lbs. Those guys need to accelerate from 30 mph to 50 mph in 30 yards after riding 150 miles (at a nice gentle 26 mph) They win or lose on who carries their one pound bottle of water and the least flex on their BB - that is for sure.

But IMHO unless you are over 6 foot, under150 pounds and can grind out 400 watts for 4 hours - day in day out - I don't believe the weight of Tubs and modern clinchers is a relevant consideration when Average Joe decides on whether to be or not to be a tubby tub rider like me.
All that you say is true. BUT, when I want to spin up those wheels fast or attack a climb (whether shallow or steep) - lightweight wheels are better. Tubular rims/tires are lighter.
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Old 08-16-18, 02:50 AM
  #62  
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I like tubs, and I don't have an argument to challenge any claims for clinchers. All three of my current road bikes are on tubs, and they started out with them right after being built up with the wheel-sets I had on hand. I've not had any regrets or reasons to think about going to clinchers on these machines. I like the satisfaction of gluing and setting up a new tub. I carry a spare in a bum bag, along with my ID, phone and stuff.
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Old 08-16-18, 04:20 AM
  #63  
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Originally Posted by Lenton58 View Post
I like tubs, and I don't have an argument to challenge any claims for clinchers. All three of my current road bikes are on tubs, and they started out with them right after being built up with the wheel-sets I had on hand. I've not had any regrets or reasons to think about going to clinchers on these machines. I like the satisfaction of gluing and setting up a new tub. I carry a spare in a bum bag, along with my ID, phone and stuff.
Do you use sealant?
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Old 08-16-18, 05:50 AM
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Originally Posted by Johno59 View Post
Do you use sealant?
Uuhh ...no. I carry a very small pump and a spare tub in my bum bag. I cycle on the cheaper tubulars. As things have turned out, my flats have happened when most the rubber has nearly worn off. So, I've tossed some, but kept others for a rainy day — a day when I will need to save pennies. Then, I'll cut, patch and sew. (There could be a song there.
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Old 08-16-18, 08:46 AM
  #65  
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Classic and Vintage Race Bikes had tubulars and the pros still use them. That is enough reason for any one with a bunch of bikes to have at least one C&V race bike with tubulars. Plus, a new low profile 32 hole Ambrosio can be put on your cup and cone Record or Dura Ace hubs for a really cool looking wheelset. Tubulars are remarkable. Clinchers?
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Old 08-20-18, 12:05 PM
  #66  
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I rode Conti Competition tubulars exclusively for almost a decade. Only flatted once in 20k miles worth of riding. For years I kept a folded up spare in my jersey pocket, which I never used. In fact, the spare's sidewall got worn through by rubbing on my jersey pockets, and I had to throw it away totally unused. In my group of cycling buddies, I was always the one without a flat. I'd ride the same roads with them, so it wasn't like I was only staying on perfectly maintained pavement. Each of them had dozens, if not hundreds, of flats, and I never had one.

What about the one time I had a flat? I was riding a 100 mile organized ride and got caught in a light rain. Wet roads makes everything on them sticky, and something stuck to my tire long enough to weasel itself in. Squirted a little bit of Stans into the valve, spun the tire, pumped it up, and that tire ran issue free until I replaced it due to wear.
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Old 08-20-18, 12:52 PM
  #67  
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I've been looking at some carbon rims and the clinchers come in about 100g more than the tubulars. 200g there.

My tubular Vittoria Corsa SC is 210g. A GP4000SII is about 225g plus a 75g latex tube. Let's say the tape is 20g.

Not quite a pound but the tubular set is lighter by ~350g of rotational weight. Yes, a water bottle weighs more than that but the water bottle isn't spinning in circles. I am still undecided whether to go with modern tubular rims or clinchers...
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Old 08-20-18, 02:14 PM
  #68  
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Acceleration and velocity.

Originally Posted by Narhay View Post
I've been looking at some carbon rims and the clinchers come in about 100g more than the tubulars. 200g there.

My tubular Vittoria Corsa SC is 210g. A GP4000SII is about 225g plus a 75g latex tube. Let's say the tape is 20g.

Not quite a pound but the tubular set is lighter by ~350g of rotational weight. Yes, a water bottle weighs more than that but the water bottle isn't spinning in circles. I am still undecided whether to go with modern tubular rims or clinchers...
Light wheels help you accelerate but the same lightness works against your momentum. Every engine has a flywheel to boost average velocity - whether Formula One or a jet engine, it restricts acceleration but minimum time to target is what it's all about .
​​​​​
If you are constantly punching up 1500 watts for whatever reason the 200 gms saved in the rim will give you an advantage up until you reach your race speed but then any advantage will cease. Unless of course you crank out 1000 watts as you cruise down the road.

If you are climbing it is the dead weight of the entire package - bike weight, water, belly fat, food etc that determines race pace.

Unless you are over 6 foot and weigh 140 pounds - any gain offered up by light rims becomes as relevant as the weight of your sweat.
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Old 08-20-18, 02:17 PM
  #69  
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Originally Posted by Narhay View Post
Not quite a pound but the tubular set is lighter by ~350g of rotational weight. Yes, a water bottle weighs more than that but the water bottle isn't spinning in circles. I am still undecided whether to go with modern tubular rims or clinchers...
Yeah, it's a cliche but those grams do count for more if they are in the wheels. I've found the difference between sew ups and clinchers to be most noticeable when climbing out of the saddle or accelerating/jumping. In the past it could be pretty dramatic. As already noted, the weight difference between modern clinchers and tubulars is much less than it was. In addition, people don't climb as much out of the saddle as they once did, because bikes have lower gears. It would seem that the to types of tire are much closer now, and what you decide to use boils down to personal preference.

FWIW I am also kind of looking for some fairly inexpensive tubulars to put on my Masi. Suggestions anyone? The thing is, it's only going to get ridden very occasionally. I don't want to buy some expensive tires to have them rot. The frame has some issue that need fixing, and it's semi/mostly retired. Ideal would be some full synthetic carcass tires. Anyone know what Tufo's are made from? I guess they're cheap enough it doesn't matter that much. Contis were always made of aramid or something, and last forever, and I did used to use them when they first became available in the early 80s. I'm not super excited about the rootbeer brown, and even less about the black. Anyone remember those bright yellow Russian tires that you could once buy for cheap?? Those were fun. I wonder if there's any connection to modern Tufo.
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Old 08-20-18, 04:33 PM
  #70  
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I am fortunate to ride a number of old race steel bikes on a selection of modern and vintage tubular and clincher wheel sets. I love them all. I have only just started on the world of tubs, mainly due to the fact that I have picked up a number of quality old tubular wheelsets from the NZ market. This includes GP4’s, Super Champion’s and Wolber Profil 20’s that have a very limited market here. The hubs on these wheels are joyful and I am a real sucker for the many shiny spokes on a skinny rim aesthetic. Tufo tyres/tape and sealant works for me so far. The biggest hassle has being removing historic glue layers. I also run versions of Vittoria tubs. I am sold on the ride feel this combo produces. IMO the tubs ride is nicer than the vintage clinchers I have (Araya super aero, Campy Omega’s and Wolber Gentleman’s-mostly on Schwalbe ones). The tubs have a sort of whooshy like sound. I have also been experimenting on a Miyata 912 and Peugeot PSV with near end of brake track life 50mm carbon tubular wheelsets. This has been immense fun in a slightly twitchy, wind catchy, speedy style with extra whoosh noises to boot. If you are up for a lark I do recommend you try this old meets new combo.Totally sold on the 25mm clincher tyre size on my carbon event bike, in fact when I am feeling less able to cope with the coarse chip seal running through my aging joints my go to bike is a Nishiki Tri-A with modern Fulcrum aluminium clinchers and 28mm Schwalbe ones that just squeeze in under the rear brake bridge A truly comfortable and quick combo.So in essence I recommend many bikes, many wheelsets and many tyres, less time at work and more time on a bike.
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Old 08-20-18, 04:49 PM
  #71  
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Originally Posted by Andy_K View Post
This, in one line, is the primary reason I have reservations about expensive tubulars.

I appreciate the other info, though. There are definitely a couple of appealing options there.



I think this is an overstatement. Here's what I'll grant: "You will could save about a pound with expensive or hard to find tubular rims versus cheap clincher rims." A lot of modern clincher rims are in the 420 to 460 gram range. I don't know what weights are typical for non-carbon tubular rims, but the ones I've happened across have been between 390 and 500 grams. The 1986 Campagnolo rim catalog, where I find the 445g Epsilon Strada Oxide rims I used with my De Rosa, offers one 330g rim with the rest coming in between 380g and 465g. I'm not disputing that the weight saving you cite are possible. You really can't get an alloy clincher rim I'd feel confident using that's under 400g. I'm just not convinced those savings are typical for people who aren't going out of their way for light rims and tires. As for tubes etc, I could get 50g tubes if I chose to. My experience is that before you add weight for the tube top quality clinchers are a bit lighter than similar quality tubulars, arguably making up the 50g for the tube. Then you have the weight of sealant in your tubulars. I'd call that a wash.
I rode tubulars exclusively between 1973 and the mid 1990s. Rim weights were - 400 gm for cheap, heavy winter/commuter rims, 330 for training/club race rims and 290 for race rims. (I spent a season on a 260 gm front but that was too light.) Tires weighed - roughly 400 gm for winter cyclo-cross tires, 300 gm for training/club race/commuting and 250 for good race. My race wheels were completely worthy of racing hard on any New England road, including stretches without pavement. I laced them 36 spoke 3X with spokes that were the equivalent (weight-wise) of DT Revolutions. Very reliable wheels save when I didn't have enough air in them and bottomed out (except that too light rim).

The rim weights clincher folk call light I used to ride in the snow. Yes, you can now run 175 gm tires and 50 gm tubes, but would you ride those on unpaved roads in a race? Could you ride that race on those roads and function on the race, not your tires?

Ben
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Old 08-20-18, 05:10 PM
  #72  
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Originally Posted by 79pmooney View Post
The rim weights clincher folk call light I used to ride in the snow.
You win the best snarky comment in this thread award!!! And it's true...

You're experience pretty much matches mine, though my exclusively sew up years were ~1980 through the mid 90s. Most people raced on Fiamme ergal 290g rims with Criterium Seta 250g tires. Speaking of whoosh, there really isn't anything as nicely whooshy as a silk racing tire. I used to train on Fiamme Reds mostly, but I switched to GP4s at some point.
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Old 08-20-18, 05:12 PM
  #73  
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Originally Posted by since6 View Post
To Tubular or Not To Tubular, that is the question.
This does seem to be the question! I’m glad it’s been raised here, and that it’s been given so many replies of experience.

I too am wondering which direction I want to take a build. It’s an Italian race frame with a full double butted Columbus SL tubing set, and fork. Attached is a pair of Ambrosio Formula 20 wheels. I have not tried airing the tires up yet, but I wouldn’t trust them for a ride as they’re ancient! Still, even though I’ve never ridden tubulars, and hold some reservations, it seems that I ought to at least finally see what the fuss is about. After all, this bike seems the perfect platform for it.

Lots of good food for thought in this thread.
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Old 08-20-18, 08:33 PM
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Originally Posted by since6 View Post
I have a lovely 1976 Japanese race bike, that fits me , which came with Mavic rims and tubular tires that actually inflated and have kept their air after 42 years. No not riding them, but it makes it much easier to move about the garage.As a young man growing up tubular tires were exotica, the gleaming Schwinn Paramount in the LBS window had them along with a “Do NOT Touch” sign, and “Racers” rode on them, but that’s as close as my Schwinn Corvette Three Speed with massive lugged tires and I ever got, until now.

I equivocate between reason and romance, I know clincher rims, tubes, tire irons, it would be an easy switch of rims/tires, but this bike was made by intention, it once was someone's dream bike, it seems a shame to change a thing so created.

But the learning curve of the right tires, glue, tape, and then the practice to get things right that you take for granted with clincher rims/tires, e.g. no lumps as the wheel spins,no high speed wobbles due to things not being quite true,not throwing away an entire tire vrs an inner tube.

Thus my title, and request for your thoughts, experiences, suggestions for what is the right stuff if I choose to try out tubular, and of course my thanks.
It is your decision, Tubulars are expensive and are high rolling resistance. But at low speeds who gives a damn?
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Old 08-20-18, 09:40 PM
  #75  
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My limited experience is with a retro vintage MARINONI (Columbus SL) / Campagnolo build for a direct comparison
Wheelset A is H+ SON TB14 rim - CHorus hubs with 32 DT Swiss Competition spokes and Challenge Pro Strada clinchers 25 measuring at 27 mm.
Wheelset B is Ambrosio Montreal rim - CHorus hubs with 32 DT Swiss Competition spokes and Veloflex Vlaanderen tubulars 27 measuring at 28 mm.
Weights are similar, tubular slightly lighter. The ride on the tubulars is incredible - smooth, spin up quickly. For durability they are amazing having competed in a 60 km classic ride with much gravel and climbing. No issues when using pressure down to 80 psi on this ride.
My other bikes (road & CX) have clinchers but the next wheelset will be Ambrosio Nemesis rims and tubulars (28-32mm) to use the CX as an allrounder.
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