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Big problems with continental gatorskin.

Old 05-18-12, 10:22 PM
  #26  
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Originally Posted by dramiscram
I've been recommended continental gatorskin on this forum by few people for his lasting quality but, since I got my brand new tire, I had 4 punctures in 500 kms. With my previous tire (cheapest available Michelin I paid 13.95$ + taxes at my LBS) I got 1 puncture in the whole tire's life (about 2000 kms) on the exact same route ( rural road, lots of small pebles and pot holes) What good is there in a long lasting tire if I get that many problems? I lost all confidence in the tire, won't dare go anywhere near ridind this sh... First thing this afternoon on my way back home: stop at my LBS and buy a cheap MICHELIN Tire. Am I the only person having that many puncture with a gatorskin? Riding 61 kms every day I want more peace of mind!
Yes. You are doing something wrong. I have NEVER flatted a Gatorskin.
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Old 05-18-12, 10:40 PM
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There is a reason that Gatorskins are a popular choice among messengers and those who ride fixed and like their skids... they are a relatively lightweight and extremely durable tyre.

One flat is often caused by debris while a second and third might be the result of not finding the offending particulate that caused the first flat... radial tyre wires are one of the most common and worst things to run into and very few tyres will be able to resist something that is so hard and fine that will eventually work it's way through almost any tyre.

My only flats in the past few years have happened while I was riding on Marathons and the Comet Primo's on my folder and the flats happened on the same route which is frequented by large trucks and heavy traffic... have had two flats on the same Marathon with one being radial wirte and the other was caused by a piece of glass as big as my thumb and the Comets were defeated by radial wire but have not had an issue since.

It is almost invisible to the eye and very hard to remove without fairly fine tweezers and is also easy to miss.
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Old 05-19-12, 07:46 AM
  #28  
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I switched my tire anyway, If it's my fault I should know pretty soon but I checked the rim and everything seems fine. I'm not a bike mechanic (an automobile mechanic btw) but I replaced bike tire a lot of time in my life so far so I think I'm not the problem but time will tell. I'll let you all know.
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Old 05-19-12, 07:47 AM
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One of my riding partners rides on Gatorskins. While not bombproof, they are a good blend of performance and durability. He has had flats due to radial tire wire and sand burr stickers. My Vittoria Randonneur have withstood sand burr stickers, due to the thicker rubber, but I caught the stickers quickly and pulled them out. I doubt my Randonneurs would be able to withstand radial tire wire. The Gatorskins have a sportier feel and seem a little faster than my Randonneurs, while my Randos seem to absorb the bumps better.

The object, I suppose, is to find the tire that works best in your situation, as there is no perfect tire that will fit everyone's needs.
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Old 05-19-12, 08:54 AM
  #30  
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Originally Posted by Igo
Yes. You are doing something wrong. I have NEVER flatted a Gatorskin.
and I didn't mean to sound disrespectful...
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Old 05-19-12, 09:29 AM
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I think I found my culprit. a 1/8 inch roundish divot cut to the threads on my rear tire -- which I think is picking up road debris. I cut a boot from an old tube and glued it to the inside of the tire - which should still have 1k miles left on it.
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Old 05-19-12, 10:01 AM
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Originally Posted by billyymc
SF - yes, please give us your opinion on tires - I've seen you dis gatorskins a few times, and I've been pretty happy with them. But if there's something you're like better I'd really be interested in checking them out. My criteria in order of importance for me - flat resistance, rolling resistance, longevity. I know some people don't like the road feel of gatorskins...but I've been ok with it, but not much to compare it to. Most of my riding is commuting, weekend rides, and a triathlon or two. Speed is important to me as my commute is 28 mile RT.

Thanks.
I am interested too.
I have been riding a gatorskin as my front tire, and only had one flat at about 600 miles in. Almost at 1000, and they are still holding up just fine. They are a good ride, very good puncture resistance, low rolling resistance, high mileage and light weight. Only things I would approve on them is wet weather traction and price. (and no, 4seasons doesn't have much better wet weather traction.)
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Old 05-19-12, 10:18 AM
  #33  
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Originally Posted by Igo
and I didn't mean to sound disrespectful...
No offence taken
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Old 05-19-12, 11:03 AM
  #34  
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I recently got my first set of Gatorskins, some 25s, for my weekend road bike. I had four flats in the first couple of rides. In my case, the problem was due to user error, pinching the tubes on the tire beads. The beads were extremely stiff on the Gatorskins and they were very hard to mount even with tire tools. I have had a lot of experience mounting tires and these were the hardest tires to mount in many years of cycling. I finally took my bike to the LBS and got them to mount the Gatorskins and they have been trouble free since then. I just hope I don't get any flats because I am not convinced I can change the tube without pinch-flatting it. I put some Vittoria Rubino Pro 25s on another bike about the same time, and I love these tires. They are lighter than the Gators, roll nicer, are much easier to mount, less expensive and reportedly very durable.
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Old 05-19-12, 11:38 AM
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I would love to see this "rock" damage to Gatorskin. Unless it is on the sidewall then I don't believe it. If a rock went through a tire then you should have a hole that you could stick a pencil through.

You could legitimately complain about Gatorskins cornering grip on wet roads or ride quality, but puncture protection and wear are tops. Anything more bombproof is much more heavy and a drag to ride.
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Old 05-19-12, 12:16 PM
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Originally Posted by tarwheel
I recently got my first set of Gatorskins, some 25s, for my weekend road bike. I had four flats in the first couple of rides. In my case, the problem was due to user error, pinching the tubes on the tire beads. The beads were extremely stiff on the Gatorskins and they were very hard to mount even with tire tools. I have had a lot of experience mounting tires and these were the hardest tires to mount in many years of cycling. I finally took my bike to the LBS and got them to mount the Gatorskins and they have been trouble free since then. I just hope I don't get any flats because I am not convinced I can change the tube without pinch-flatting it. I put some Vittoria Rubino Pro 25s on another bike about the same time, and I love these tires. They are lighter than the Gators, roll nicer, are much easier to mount, less expensive and reportedly very durable.
Did you use the "Ultra" Gatorskins? which are wire beaded. I use folders and don't use tire tolls on my Trek nor did I on the Giant. I've never used wire beaded tires so I can't compare.
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Old 05-19-12, 12:54 PM
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Originally Posted by Igo
Did you use the "Ultra" Gatorskins? which are wire beaded. I use folders and don't use tire tolls on my Trek nor did I on the Giant. I've never used wire beaded tires so I can't compare.
No, these were folders. However, I had bought them a while back and stored them folded in my garage for a year or so. That may have made the bead stiffer or put a funny kink in them. Sometimes tires just vary. Even my mechanic had trouble mounting them, and he thought they were just a set that were on the small side within their range of variability.
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Old 05-19-12, 01:38 PM
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Originally Posted by FrenchFit
If someone were to invent the perfect tire one poster would complain about flats and another would give it a 3 out of 10 stars.

Gatosrkins are fine tires; if you want something lighter get GP4000s.
+1 Problems are usually idiosyncratic. I base this on my own experience therefore it is foolproof. But, seriously, I used to ride gatorskins and loved them. Then I bought some Conti-4seasons, but never rode them, because Vittoria Randonneurs came on my new ride. They haven't flatted in 5 months of daily riding -- in the harsh extreme conditions of Southern California, no less. I also agree with checking rim tape. That's where most of my flats have come from in the past.
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Old 05-19-12, 03:21 PM
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Originally Posted by tarwheel
No, these were folders. However, I had bought them a while back and stored them folded in my garage for a year or so. That may have made the bead stiffer or put a funny kink in them. Sometimes tires just vary. Even my mechanic had trouble mounting them, and he thought they were just a set that were on the small side within their range of variability.
I'm told that thought the rim's bead may have a consistent diameter from manufacturer to manufacturer, it is not necessarily so that the outer lip of wheels are consistent from maker to maker; that it is just easier or harder to put the same tire on different wheels. Makes you wonder.
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Old 05-19-12, 04:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Sixty Fiver
One flat is often caused by debris while a second and third might be the result of not finding the offending particulate that caused the first flat.

(...)

It is almost invisible to the eye and very hard to remove without fairly fine tweezers and is also easy to miss.
Exactly. That's been my experience too. Last time it was a tiny piece of wire, 1mm maybe, that I could not see without a magnifying glass that caused slow leaks, it wasn't sticking out on the outside, but after running my fingers along the inside of the tire several times I eventually felt something, found it and pulled it with tweezers.
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Old 05-20-12, 11:28 AM
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i've used dozens of brands of tires and conti gatorskins are among the best when it comes to rolling resistance vs puncture resistance. i currently either buy gators from europe or REI when the prices dip to the low 30s. my other go to tire is the serfas survivor -- definitely the best value in puncture resistant training tires.
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Old 05-20-12, 01:11 PM
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Originally Posted by spare_wheel
i've used dozens of brands of tires and conti gatorskins are among the best when it comes to rolling resistance vs puncture resistance. i currently either buy gators from europe or REI when the prices dip to the low 30s. my other go to tire is the serfas survivor -- definitely the best value in puncture resistant training tires.
I am starting to lean towards Maxxis re-fuse as the best value. It has just a tad more rolling resistance than the gatorskin but easily makes up for wet weather cornering and traction and they are $40 at full price. So far, same puncture resistance.
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Old 05-20-12, 03:08 PM
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3 years on my Travel Contact tires with Gator skin mesh.. 1 big-arse nail puncture,
after 2 years, then 3rd year, nothing, again.
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Old 05-21-12, 08:44 AM
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Originally Posted by tarwheel
I recently got my first set of Gatorskins, some 25s, for my weekend road bike. I had four flats in the first couple of rides. In my case, the problem was due to user error, pinching the tubes on the tire beads. The beads were extremely stiff on the Gatorskins and they were very hard to mount even with tire tools. I have had a lot of experience mounting tires and these were the hardest tires to mount in many years of cycling. I finally took my bike to the LBS and got them to mount the Gatorskins and they have been trouble free since then. I just hope I don't get any flats because I am not convinced I can change the tube without pinch-flatting it. I put some Vittoria Rubino Pro 25s on another bike about the same time, and I love these tires. They are lighter than the Gators, roll nicer, are much easier to mount, less expensive and reportedly very durable.
My commuter cyclocross bike has 28mm gatotskins and they are a huge pain to get on the rim, but my road bike has 23mm gatorskins and I can put them on easily. Sometimes I worry that I'm going to break a tire lever when installing on the tight fitting wheel.
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Old 05-21-12, 09:31 AM
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This thread jinxed me so bad. I ALMOST posted that I have never had a flat and have been riding them this whole year.

Loaded up my bike this morning to go to work, spun it around to take it off the porch, and there it is, flat front tire. :-(

I'll give you guys the inside scoop later on what punctured this "best ever" / "worstest ever" tire.
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Old 05-21-12, 06:49 PM
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Glass puncture. Slow leak.
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Old 05-22-12, 11:08 AM
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FWIW, I've had bad luck with Gatorskins. I rode on stock Bontrager Hardcase racelite tires & never had a flat. I wanted something lighter & that provided a nicer ride. I switched to Gatorskins & got 2 flats in the course of a week or two. I switched back to the Hardcase racelite on the rear tire (I still use the Contis up front & will until they wear out, but I won't replace them with another set) & have been trouble free ever since. The tires do get good reviews here & elsewhere, so I don't bash them, but they definitely did not work for me & my uses. And no, I didn't do anything wrong, yes I did the whole look inside the tire for what caused the issue, etc.
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Old 05-22-12, 11:17 AM
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Originally Posted by WestMass
This thread jinxed me so bad. I ALMOST posted that I have never had a flat and have been riding them this whole year.

Loaded up my bike this morning to go to work, spun it around to take it off the porch, and there it is, flat front tire. :-(

I'll give you guys the inside scoop later on what punctured this "best ever" / "worstest ever" tire.
Sorry!
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Old 05-22-12, 11:18 AM
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Originally Posted by MK313
FWIW, I've had bad luck with Gatorskins. I rode on stock Bontrager Hardcase racelite tires & never had a flat. I wanted something lighter & that provided a nicer ride. I switched to Gatorskins & got 2 flats in the course of a week or two. I switched back to the Hardcase racelite on the rear tire (I still use the Contis up front & will until they wear out, but I won't replace them with another set) & have been trouble free ever since. The tires do get good reviews here & elsewhere, so I don't bash them, but they definitely did not work for me & my uses. And no, I didn't do anything wrong, yes I did the whole look inside the tire for what caused the issue, etc.
Same as me!
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Old 05-22-12, 11:25 AM
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Other than my flat yesterday.....

I really like these tires. They're the first "expensive" tires I've bought though. Any other tires I've ridden have been "whatever the cheapest road tire you've got is"

My Cannondale came with Schwalbe Luganos which have been fine so far.
My old cannondale currently has a michelin lithium and some specialized tire.

I guess I don't have the know-how to judge a tire, really. They go on my wheels and sometimes go flat, and sometimes wear out.
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