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Best width for commuter tire?

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Best width for commuter tire?

Old 08-08-07, 12:35 AM
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rigel
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Best width for commuter tire?

I'd appreciate your opinions and experiences on what is considered the best tire size [width] for commuting purposes. I'm looking for a tire that has good pavement grip, is quick rolling, yet is wide enough to make the ride comfy.

My commuter bike is a rigid, steel MTB, currently running WTB 2.1 Nanoraptors (my only spares from my other - hardtail - MTB) and find them to be very comfy and surprisingly fast-rolling, yet I'm looking for something with better grip on smooth streets (ever try taking a fast corner on wet blacktop on these Nanos? ). For comparison, the Nanos replaced 1.5" slicks that, strangely, felt slower rolling than the Nanos

Any suggestions are very much welcome. Specific tire brands/models are good (26" only please).

TIA

Last edited by rigel; 08-08-07 at 01:10 AM.
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Old 08-08-07, 12:43 AM
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Continental Town & Country? I've used them before and had pretty good luck. They're an inverted tread design and the rubber is actually fairly sticky. Check them out.
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Old 08-08-07, 05:05 AM
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+1 Had this on my front tire for about 1000 miles. Excellent grip on the road & fast. Smooth too. Lower the pressure and you can handle easy singletrack.
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Old 08-08-07, 05:08 AM
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when carrying a little weight on rougher city streets, I favor slightly wider tires. They seem more stable. I go with about 30 mm's.
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Old 08-08-07, 05:52 AM
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I love my Serfas Drifters (26 x 1.5). Very grippy virtually smooth (light tread is inverted.) Rated for 80 psi. I run them 80-85 and they roll well. Oh, yeah... puncture resistant too.
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Old 08-08-07, 06:17 AM
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Its all about person preference and conditions. I am heavy (220#) and ride rough urban streets. I ride a Cross Check which is a road type frame with clearance for wider tires. I currently run 37mm slicks but I will probably switch to 50mm front and 40 mm rear because I prefer the better handling and comfort of the wider tire. For a MTB I would probably go with a 50mm (2.0 inch) or possibly a 60mm (2.35 inch) Big Apple.
If my ride was longer, smoother and faster I would use a 28mm tire to improve the speed.

Craig
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Old 08-08-07, 06:49 AM
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hmmm - the answer to the "best width" is that you have to decide the answer based on what you ride through, how fast you go, etc.
But you're on a rigid mtb. I ride a front-suspension mtb over pretty neasty pavement. I've settled on 1.5" width minimum, and no bigger then 2.0 width. Currently I'm smack in the middle: 1.75" Schwalbe Marathons, at 55psi they roll fast and ride comfortably.
You might check the Serfas Drifter and Schwalbe Marathon and Big Apple lines, for fat fast comfy tires. They have a good rep around here.
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Old 08-08-07, 09:15 AM
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On my road bike I ride 23c. On my two commuters I ride them slightly wider at 28c.
Edit: One of them is actually 32c.
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Old 08-08-07, 09:35 AM
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When I was riding my mountain bike, my favorite tires were the Schwalbe Big Apple in 2".

Were I to go back to a MTB (highly unlikely), I'd be using either those, or the Marathon Supreme. I used several tires in the 1.5 range, but didn't like them as much.
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Old 08-08-07, 10:51 AM
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I just switched from the Continental Town & Country tires (26 x 2.1) to the Specialized Armadillo (26 x 1.95). The T&C were good tires, but I'd gotten 3 flats in 2 months and decided to go with something that had more puncture resistance. The Armadillos are Kevlar tires into which I've placed the tire rings and slime filled thorn resistant tubes. Heavy, but I should be pretty good on the puncture front.

I was impressed with the treads on the Specialized. They run a good way up the sidewall, so I haven't had any problems with the turns, even on the downhill. I'm still breaking them in, so they're a little slower than the T&C were, but I'm getting a better workout :-)
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Old 08-08-07, 11:50 AM
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I've been riding Schwalbe Marathon cross tires on a hardtail 29er mountain bike. I'm thinking hard of going back to 2.1 Nanoraptors so that I can hit some of the singletrack near here on the way home. I miss that.
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Old 08-08-07, 11:57 AM
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I use Nashbar Prima 2 kevlars size 700X25. They have excellent puncture resistance especially when combined with a tire liner and are quite cheap.
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Old 08-08-07, 05:40 PM
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Originally Posted by DrCycleMrDrive View Post
I love my Serfas Drifters (26 x 1.5). Very grippy virtually smooth (light tread is inverted.) Rated for 80 psi. I run them 80-85 and they roll well. Oh, yeah... puncture resistant too.
Interesting! Mine are only rated 40-65, as per their website.
http://www.serfas.com/tires/CTR-15.shtml
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Old 08-08-07, 06:55 PM
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Schwalbe marathons, 50x559 are a great size for a MTB bike.
marathons roll pretty well especially on rough commuter roads,
they are tough and long wearing, plus have a reflective side wall stripe.
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Old 08-08-07, 07:12 PM
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I'm using these right now http://www.irctire.com/tires/avantage_pro.html at 60 psi and they seem to have to much tread for what I want, they have a pretty loud howl and don't seem to roll all that well.

They are pretty comfortable. After about 80 miles though they're starting to show some wear which seems crazy to me.
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Old 08-08-07, 08:46 PM
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700 x 32c rocks my world. Conti Top Touring (no longer available, I am told) so I will stay with that width in Marathons when these wear out, but after about 700 miles they still look very good.
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Old 08-08-07, 11:39 PM
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I've been rolling on 1.5x26 Tioga City Slickers for a couple thousand kilometers. So far so good, got no complain. They've served me well in every condition, except a surprise snowstorm where they were kinda slippery.
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Old 08-09-07, 07:21 AM
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26x1.5 street tires for pavement.

26x2.0 knobbies for gravel.
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Old 08-09-07, 07:57 AM
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Specialized Armadillo nimbus EX 26x1.5 work for me. 5mi pavement commute.
Also work for combined road and mountain trail loops.
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Old 08-09-07, 08:13 AM
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I'm currently running Schwalbe City Jet 26x1.5... Wish I had a road bike, I'd be running 700x23
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