Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Cyclocross and Gravelbiking (Recreational)
Reload this Page >

Stay With Wider Tires or Go Skinny?

Notices
Cyclocross and Gravelbiking (Recreational) This has to be the most physically intense sport ever invented. It's high speed bicycle racing on a short off road course or riding the off pavement rides on gravel like : "Unbound Gravel". We also have a dedicated Racing forum for the Cyclocross Hard Core Racers.

Stay With Wider Tires or Go Skinny?

Old 12-06-16, 04:56 PM
  #26  
Have bike, will travel
 
Barrettscv's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Lake Geneva, WI
Posts: 12,284

Bikes: Ridley Helium SLX, Canyon Endurance SL, De Rosa Professional, Eddy Merckx Corsa Extra, Schwinn Paramount (1 painted, 1 chrome), Peugeot PX10, Serotta Nova X, Simoncini Cyclocross Special, Raleigh Roker, Pedal Force CG2 and CX2

Mentioned: 46 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 910 Post(s)
Liked 288 Times in 158 Posts
Originally Posted by 09box
That is a very good price on good tire from a high-quality brand. It's certainly a better tire than anything I can find in that size and at that price point. Once you get it installed and have it inflated for a few days, please measure it's actual width and provide a review.
__________________
When I ride my bike I feel free and happy and strong. I'm liberated from the usual nonsense of day to day life. Solid, dependable, silent, my bike is my horse, my fighter jet, my island, my friend. Together we will conquer that hill and thereafter the world.

Last edited by Barrettscv; 12-06-16 at 05:23 PM.
Barrettscv is offline  
Old 12-10-16, 09:18 AM
  #27  
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 968
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 113 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 2 Times in 2 Posts
I ended up getting a pair of these in 700x32:

Wiggle | LifeLine Essential Commuter Road Tyre | City Tyres

700x32 was the ideal size I was looking for and something with a little tread and some casing to it. I know it might be slower and a little heavier than some of the tires mentioned in this thread but I need a durable tires for the roads around here (especially with potholes coming!). Can't argue with the price and I was able to get cheaper shipping from the UK than from some US sites...
09box is offline  
Old 12-12-16, 12:50 PM
  #28  
Senior Member
 
chas58's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Michigan
Posts: 4,863

Bikes: too many of all kinds

Mentioned: 35 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1147 Post(s)
Liked 415 Times in 335 Posts
Hmm

We are talking a rolling resistance of 12.2watts for a the continental 25mm vs 19.1 watts for the Marathon supreme. That is at 18mph. They are both excellent in this category. The 35mm marathon supreme does weigh almost twice what the conti does, so it will accelerate a bit slower. That is about a pound of rotational weight over two tires. Still, when cruising, that difference of 6 watts is trivial.

I do love those conti's though. smooth riding and fast!

Originally Posted by Andy_K
I recently switched a bike from 700x35 Schwalbe Marathon Supremes to 700x25 Cont GP 4000S's. The Marathon Supremes are pretty fast rolling tires by touring tire standards, but I've got to tell you switching to the Contis was like adding a jet pack. This should seem obvious. After all, the Contis are essentially racing tires. Even so, I was surprised at how big the difference was.

I think this is pretty well covered in the discussion above, but this isn't really as simple as wider vs. narrower. It's more about how supple the tire is.

I see the Clement Strada LGG is available in a 700x32 version. Why not those?
chas58 is offline  
Old 12-12-16, 12:54 PM
  #29  
Senior Member
 
chas58's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Michigan
Posts: 4,863

Bikes: too many of all kinds

Mentioned: 35 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1147 Post(s)
Liked 415 Times in 335 Posts
Interesting. a $10 tire typically is going to be stiff and slow and/or have poor puncture protection. That puppy is heavy!. I just bought a ThickSlick 28mm tire for $10 for my fixed gear. That is a fast, heavy, tough tire for urban fixed gear abuse. They are a lot different than the tires recommended here!


Originally Posted by 09box
I ended up getting a pair of these in 700x32:

Wiggle | LifeLine Essential Commuter Road Tyre | City Tyres

700x32 was the ideal size I was looking for and something with a little tread and some casing to it. I know it might be slower and a little heavier than some of the tires mentioned in this thread but I need a durable tires for the roads around here (especially with potholes coming!). Can't argue with the price and I was able to get cheaper shipping from the UK than from some US sites...
chas58 is offline  
Old 12-12-16, 01:39 PM
  #30  
Senior Member
 
Andy_K's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Beaverton, OR
Posts: 14,842

Bikes: Yes

Mentioned: 532 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3291 Post(s)
Liked 4,072 Times in 1,507 Posts
Originally Posted by chas58
Hmm

We are talking a rolling resistance of 12.2watts for a the continental 25mm vs 19.1 watts for the Marathon supreme. That is at 18mph. They are both excellent in this category. The 35mm marathon supreme does weigh almost twice what the conti does, so it will accelerate a bit slower. That is about a pound of rotational weight over two tires. Still, when cruising, that difference of 6 watts is trivial.

I do love those conti's though. smooth riding and fast!
It's true, the practical difference is trivial. I'm mostly talking about how they feel. A few years ago I wanted to quantify the difference in performance I was getting with the Marathon Supremes, so one day I decided to ride my usual commute as fast as I could with the Marathon Supremes and compare it to some of the best times I had previously recorded with Conti GP 4 Seasons on the same bike. I ended up with the fastest time I've ever recorded over that route. Granted this is very unscientific -- I only took one sample. etc. -- but it was enough to convince me that there was no significant objective performance difference from the tires for the way I was using them.

But the Contis feel a lot faster and are just more fun to ride.

I would also note that the rolling resistance figures you cited likely don't account for suspension losses, which is where the 4000S's really shine vs. the Marathon Supremes. Still, I agree that both are excellent tires.
__________________
My Bikes
Andy_K is offline  
Old 12-13-16, 01:07 PM
  #31  
Senior Member
 
chas58's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Michigan
Posts: 4,863

Bikes: too many of all kinds

Mentioned: 35 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1147 Post(s)
Liked 415 Times in 335 Posts
Yeah, those Conti's 4000s tires are great and feel great. Certainly better than the gatorskins I had on before!
chas58 is offline  
Old 12-14-16, 09:11 AM
  #32  
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 968
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 113 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 2 Times in 2 Posts
I thought about the Thickslicks but I had already bought tires. They were under 10 bucks each on Nashbar at one point a couple days ago. I guess I have a thing for cheap tires (considering the ones I got) and something with a little tread in case I want to wander off the road or trail into the woods.
09box is offline  
Old 12-14-16, 11:52 AM
  #33  
Senior Member
 
chas58's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Michigan
Posts: 4,863

Bikes: too many of all kinds

Mentioned: 35 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1147 Post(s)
Liked 415 Times in 335 Posts
yeah, I got some 28's for $10 from nashbar a couple of days ago. my 25mms were to small, lol, and for $10 I could upgrade. As long as it is dry, slick tires work well. They struggle in wet grass/mud, & deep sand. To some degree you can manage sand by lowering pressure, but that works better with larger tires that can give you some flotation.
chas58 is offline  
Old 01-16-17, 09:45 PM
  #34  
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 968
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 113 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 2 Times in 2 Posts
I mounted my new tires and took them out for a shakedown ride yesterday. I took them on pavement and also through some dirt and gravel and they roll pretty well and handled gravel alright as well. Noticeable improvement over my old 700x40 tires..
09box is offline  
Old 02-07-17, 09:08 PM
  #35  
Motorvated
 
kshapero's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Very Southern Florida
Posts: 212

Bikes: Cannodale Quick CX2, Specialized Allez Sport, Specialized Vado SL 5.0 EQ

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 16 Post(s)
Liked 7 Times in 5 Posts
Originally Posted by Tim_Iowa
Buy better 700 x 38 tires. Lightweight, supple (120 tpi or greater) tires will be fast in just about any width.

Since I've switched to light/supple tires, I hate riding any tire skinnier than a 38 mm. Any skinnier tire will be no faster, but less comfortable.
What brands fit this criteria?
kshapero is offline  
Old 02-08-17, 09:09 AM
  #36  
Senior Member
 
Tim_Iowa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Cedar Rapids, IA
Posts: 1,643

Bikes: 1997 Rivendell Road Standard 650b conversion (tourer), 1988 Schwinn Project KOM-10 (gravel/tour), 2013 Foundry Auger disc (CX/gravel), 2016 Cannondale Fat CAAD 2 (MTB/winter), 2011 Cannondale Flash 29er Lefty (trail MTB)

Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 167 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 5 Times in 5 Posts
Originally Posted by kshapero
What brands fit this criteria?
Tubular tires have been made in lighter, finer casings than clinchers for years. Now, more and more brands are trying to replicate that type of tire in a high-end clincher.

Most brands make a high-end, lightweight tire with a supple casing and little to no puncture protection. For example, the Conti Grand Prix tires vs the Gatorskin, the Schwalbe One vs the Marathon, etc.
Look for high TPI (usually above 120, or 360 if you're Continental) and low rolling resistance rubber.
Some Euro brands like Challenge make handmade "open tubular" tires that are crazy light and fast. Unfortunately, the handmade bead isn't tubeless-compatible.

Compass has light, supple tires in multiple sizes; some are tubeless-compatible (they're updating their line one model at a time).
Their tires are made by Panaracer, who offers some similar tires of their own like the Pari-Moto and the slightly slower Gravel King.

The Compass tires are excellent, but expensive. I've found some other tires like the Challenge Gravel Grinder Race (120 tpi), Bontrager CX0, Gravel King, Pari-Moto (650b only), to be very fast tires that aren't crazy expensive. You can also find good prices on Euro tires from Euro shops, but it's smart to bundle with a larger order to save on shipping.
For example, bike-discount.de sells Schwalbe tires for 40-50% of US retail, but you have to pay a flat ~$23 shipping fee. Still a great deal if you find other stuff to bundle. Schwalbe's tires with their Evo Liteskin or One casings are very light and supple.


Obviously, thin and light tires won't have the puncture protection of heavy duty Marathons.
Folks that can't change a tube or hate doing it may choose to compromise their ride quality for a flat-resistant tire.
This compromise is less apparent in high-pressure, skinny road tires, and more apparent in lower pressure, wide offroad tires. Hence why so many folks are OK with their 110 psi Gatorskins.
But at the pressures most of us are using for gravel, you can feel the difference.

Tubeless supple tires are the game-changer; fast ride and puncture-sealing.
However, I recommend only doing tubeless if you use tubeless-ready tires and tubeless-ready rims. For example, the Pari-Moto tires were too thin to seal up tubeless; they wept sealant through the sidewalls for weeks.

Thankfully, I've only had a couple flats on the flimsy Pari-Motos in the last 2 years of riding.
Tim_Iowa is offline  
Old 02-08-17, 09:56 AM
  #37  
Senior Member
 
shoota's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Stillwater, OK
Posts: 7,831
Mentioned: 33 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1874 Post(s)
Liked 698 Times in 471 Posts
Originally Posted by Tim_Iowa
Tubeless supple tires are the game-changer; fast ride and puncture-sealing.
Do you know of an updated list of these tires? The only ones I'm finding are a couple years old.

What's the gravel like in the Cedar Rapids area? I'll be riding in western IA where the gravel roads can be pretty harsh and it's fairly hilly. I'm wondering if you have a tubeless tire suggestion for me for that type of gravel? Thx!
__________________
2014 Cannondale SuperSix EVO 2
2019 Salsa Warbird
shoota is offline  
Old 02-08-17, 10:01 AM
  #38  
Senior Member
 
Tim_Iowa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Cedar Rapids, IA
Posts: 1,643

Bikes: 1997 Rivendell Road Standard 650b conversion (tourer), 1988 Schwinn Project KOM-10 (gravel/tour), 2013 Foundry Auger disc (CX/gravel), 2016 Cannondale Fat CAAD 2 (MTB/winter), 2011 Cannondale Flash 29er Lefty (trail MTB)

Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 167 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 5 Times in 5 Posts
Originally Posted by shoota
Do you know of an updated list of these tires? The only ones I'm finding are a couple years old.

What's the gravel like in the Cedar Rapids area? I'll be riding in western IA where the gravel roads can be pretty harsh and it's fairly hilly. I'm wondering if you have a tubeless tire suggestion for me for that type of gravel? Thx!
New tubeless tires are being released all the time. I'm not on top of every one. I look at what's on sale, and then do some web research to find out if it's the tire I want.

The gravel in eastern IA is about the same: .5-1" lime rock, and the hills can be steep but short.

What tire size are you asking about? 700, 650, or 26"? What tire width can your bike clear?
Tim_Iowa is offline  
Old 02-08-17, 10:04 AM
  #39  
Senior Member
 
shoota's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Stillwater, OK
Posts: 7,831
Mentioned: 33 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1874 Post(s)
Liked 698 Times in 471 Posts
Originally Posted by Tim_Iowa
New tubeless tires are being released all the time. I'm not on top of every one. I look at what's on sale, and then do some web research to find out if it's the tire I want.

The gravel in eastern IA is about the same: .5-1" lime rock, and the hills can be steep but short.

What tire size are you asking about? 700, 650, or 26"? What tire width can your bike clear?
700 and I think it can clear up to 42mm. Sounds like our terrains are very similar.
__________________
2014 Cannondale SuperSix EVO 2
2019 Salsa Warbird
shoota is offline  
Old 02-08-17, 10:38 AM
  #40  
Senior Member
 
chas58's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Michigan
Posts: 4,863

Bikes: too many of all kinds

Mentioned: 35 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1147 Post(s)
Liked 415 Times in 335 Posts
Originally Posted by shoota
Do you know of an updated list of these tires? The only ones I'm finding are a couple years old.

What's the gravel like in the Cedar Rapids area? I'll be riding in western IA where the gravel roads can be pretty harsh and it's fairly hilly. I'm wondering if you have a tubeless tire suggestion for me for that type of gravel? Thx!
Here is what you need:

Gravel Tires - Riding Gravel's Reference Guide

I got the Maxxis Rambler as it is on of the most supple (and light and fast) tubeless gravel tires. So far so good - I'm impressed at its speed and suppleness. I've been using some fast continental 32mm tires for road and commuting, but the Rambler doesn't seem to give up much in that area - its a little hard to tell in the winter though.

Both sets of tires are 120 tpi.
chas58 is offline  
Old 02-08-17, 11:11 AM
  #41  
Senior Member
 
Tim_Iowa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Cedar Rapids, IA
Posts: 1,643

Bikes: 1997 Rivendell Road Standard 650b conversion (tourer), 1988 Schwinn Project KOM-10 (gravel/tour), 2013 Foundry Auger disc (CX/gravel), 2016 Cannondale Fat CAAD 2 (MTB/winter), 2011 Cannondale Flash 29er Lefty (trail MTB)

Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 167 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 5 Times in 5 Posts
Originally Posted by shoota
700 and I think it can clear up to 42mm. Sounds like our terrains are very similar.
I'm using Challenge Gravel Grinder Race tires on my cross bike, but they're not tubeless-ready.

Tubeless-ready recommendations:
Panaracer Gravel King SK in 40 mm (measures 42.5 actual)
WTB Riddler in 37 mm
Schwalbe G-One Evo in 40 mm
Clement XPLOR MSO in 40 mm
Compass Barlow Pass in 38 mm is NOT tubeless ready (yet), but their Steilacoom 38 mm knobby and Bon Jon Pass 35 mm slick ARE tubeless-ready.
Compass Snoqualmie Pass in 44 mm (I'd read up on real reviews to see if this tire measures a bit narrow)
Teravail Cannonball in 38 mm
Maxxis Rambler in 40 mm
Kenda Happy Medium Pro in 40 mm
Kenda Flintridge Pro in 40 mm

Always buy the highest TPI version you can afford. Many of these tires come in 120 TPI as well as lesser versions.
Many of these tires also come in tubeless-ready and standard casings, so be careful what you buy.
Compare the weight of the tires; a lighter tire will usually be more supple and faster-rolling than a heavier one.
Tim_Iowa is offline  
Old 02-08-17, 11:55 AM
  #42  
Senior Member
 
shoota's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Stillwater, OK
Posts: 7,831
Mentioned: 33 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1874 Post(s)
Liked 698 Times in 471 Posts
Originally Posted by chas58
Here is what you need:

Gravel Tires - Riding Gravel's Reference Guide

I got the Maxxis Rambler as it is on of the most supple (and light and fast) tubeless gravel tires. So far so good - I'm impressed at its speed and suppleness. I've been using some fast continental 32mm tires for road and commuting, but the Rambler doesn't seem to give up much in that area - its a little hard to tell in the winter though.

Both sets of tires are 120 tpi.
Originally Posted by Tim_Iowa
I'm using Challenge Gravel Grinder Race tires on my cross bike, but they're not tubeless-ready.

Tubeless-ready recommendations:
Panaracer Gravel King SK in 40 mm (measures 42.5 actual)
WTB Riddler in 37 mm
Schwalbe G-One Evo in 40 mm
Clement XPLOR MSO in 40 mm
Compass Barlow Pass in 38 mm is NOT tubeless ready (yet), but their Steilacoom 38 mm knobby and Bon Jon Pass 35 mm slick ARE tubeless-ready.
Compass Snoqualmie Pass in 44 mm (I'd read up on real reviews to see if this tire measures a bit narrow)
Teravail Cannonball in 38 mm
Maxxis Rambler in 40 mm
Kenda Happy Medium Pro in 40 mm
Kenda Flintridge Pro in 40 mm

Always buy the highest TPI version you can afford. Many of these tires come in 120 TPI as well as lesser versions.
Many of these tires also come in tubeless-ready and standard casings, so be careful what you buy.
Compare the weight of the tires; a lighter tire will usually be more supple and faster-rolling than a heavier one.
Thanks guys!
__________________
2014 Cannondale SuperSix EVO 2
2019 Salsa Warbird
shoota is offline  
Old 02-09-17, 10:45 AM
  #43  
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 968
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 113 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 2 Times in 2 Posts
Wiggle has pretty good prices for Marathons. Their shipping isn't outrageous for a UK site. I paid $4.99 to get two tires from UK to US a couple months ago..
09box is offline  
Old 04-01-17, 08:36 AM
  #44  
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 968
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 113 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 2 Times in 2 Posts
I ended up getting a pair of 700x28 Hutchinson Nitros off Nashbar for cheap. I had them mounted and the Nitro that was on the back might be toast. I have thought about trying a Thickslick on the back. Is that the sort of the tire that would be okay to have on the back and a different tire on the front?
09box is offline  
Old 04-01-17, 11:51 AM
  #45  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 5,737
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 147 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 8 Times in 8 Posts
I'm contrarian. Running 40 c Schwalbe Marathon Dureme folding tires on my rig.

Haven't felt a need to downsize yet.
NormanF is offline  
Old 04-02-17, 04:15 PM
  #46  
Senior Member
 
chas58's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Michigan
Posts: 4,863

Bikes: too many of all kinds

Mentioned: 35 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1147 Post(s)
Liked 415 Times in 335 Posts
Originally Posted by 09box
I ended up getting a pair of 700x28 Hutchinson Nitros off Nashbar for cheap. I had them mounted and the Nitro that was on the back might be toast. I have thought about trying a Thickslick on the back. Is that the sort of the tire that would be okay to have on the back and a different tire on the front?
I do that. They are way too heavy to use as a pair...
chas58 is offline  
Old 04-11-17, 06:14 PM
  #47  
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2017
Posts: 13
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Wider is better. just make sure you get wider rims also.
CvRyder is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Thread Starter
Forum
Replies
Last Post
el forestero
General Cycling Discussion
53
03-18-19 08:58 PM
big chainring
Road Cycling
97
06-04-18 09:57 AM
jppe
Fifty Plus (50+)
33
07-28-14 05:43 PM
rustang351
Road Cycling
10
05-19-13 11:05 AM
scottb27
Hybrid Bicycles
6
07-31-12 12:17 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service -

Copyright © 2024 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.