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Fast rolling gravel tires?

Old 06-29-20, 05:18 AM
  #1  
bretton007
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Fast rolling gravel tires?

I have a giant revolt . I am looking for the fastest rolling tire possible . I use the bike 60 percent road and 40 percent hard pack trails . Any recommendations
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Old 06-29-20, 07:04 AM
  #2  
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If all you care about is rolling resistance, just go buy at the top of the chart: https://www.bicyclerollingresistance.com

The best tire is much more complicated - what provides the best grip, best cornering, if you want to be able to run tubeless, flat resistance, multi surface, etc. There is a lot to read here, I would start with some searches.
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Old 06-29-20, 07:13 AM
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As mentioned, lots of factors, are there any loose surfaces, gravel, sand, etc. where you would want some tread, or is it all hardpack? What's your size, and offroad handling skills? Lots of factors to determine tire size and type. But typically, a slick will be fastest for road/smooth hardpack. If you need some tread, then Continental Terra Speed or Schwalbe G-One Allround are the fastest knobbed tires.
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Old 06-29-20, 07:30 AM
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Originally Posted by Rides4Beer View Post
As mentioned, lots of factors, are there any loose surfaces, gravel, sand, etc. where you would want some tread, or is it all hardpack? What's your size, and offroad handling skills? Lots of factors to determine tire size and type. But typically, a slick will be fastest for road/smooth hardpack. If you need some tread, then Continental Terra Speed or Schwalbe G-One Allround are the fastest knobbed tires.

I have the G ones now , I find them a bit slow on pavement which I ride 60% of the time . Maybe its me ,I have nothing to compare them to . Its time for new tires so I want to make sure I get the right ones. Thanks
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Old 06-29-20, 07:34 AM
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Originally Posted by bretton007 View Post
I have the G ones now , I find them a bit slow on pavement which I ride 60% of the time . Maybe its me ,I have nothing to compare them to . Its time for new tires so I want to make sure I get the right ones. Thanks
Which model of G-One do you have? They have four levels. If you have the Bite or UltraBite, I would expect those to be a lil slower on pavement. The Allrounds have tested pretty fast, about the same as the Conti Terra Speed (the Terra Speeds get a slight edge at lower pressures). Also depends on the size, being a bigger guy, I like a lil more tire, so I stick with 40mm, but I know guys that tear up the gravel on 30-32s, but they have better handling skills than me. lol
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Old 06-29-20, 07:46 AM
  #6  
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Rene Herse.
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Old 06-29-20, 11:18 PM
  #7  
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I ride on G one all arounds in 35mm at 70 psi, tubed. That’s max pressure, but I’m 180lbs and the ride is plenty comfortable.

these tires are awesome, I pass road nerds with their silly tights and tiny tires all the time. : )
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Old 06-30-20, 05:31 AM
  #8  
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Originally Posted by wgscott View Post
Rene Herse.
I've been meaning to ask if you have a separate thread on these or could recommend one. I've been giving a hard look at the Barlow Pass TC (700cx38mm). Are there any long term reviews on the differences between the three "grades", ExtraLight - Standard - Endurance? What version would work the best setup tubeless and ridden on "Midwest" gravel - quarried limestone rock under 7/8" aggregate without much sharp edges.

Then I've also been looking at Rene Herse's knobby version of the Barlow, I wonder how they wear?

To the OP, I have considered running GP5k at 32mm, but my gravel is a little too loose. They might work really well on just hard packed dirt. I currently have WTB riddler's in a 37mm, they came stock but had the best over all score compared to other tires (price, grip, speed, toughness). I've quickly worked away the back center nubs, but still have the side lugs. They're fairly quick, I run them at 40/50 on pavement. I'd be hard pressed to buy them again right away though, I'd like to try Continentals Terra speed.
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Old 07-03-20, 03:35 PM
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I have 700c x 40 WTB Biways on order, should be here Monday or Tuesday. Replacing stock Giant tires with them, I'll post my impressions later.
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Old 07-06-20, 03:21 AM
  #10  
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I'm enjoying the Conti Terra Trail tires these days. They feel faster than the Conti Speed Ride and Clement Xplor MSO I've run previously.
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Old 07-06-20, 08:30 AM
  #11  
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Originally Posted by GrainBrain View Post
I've been meaning to ask if you have a separate thread on these or could recommend one. I've been giving a hard look at the Barlow Pass TC (700cx38mm). Are there any long term reviews on the differences between the three "grades", ExtraLight - Standard - Endurance? What version would work the best setup tubeless and ridden on "Midwest" gravel - quarried limestone rock under 7/8" aggregate without much sharp edges.

Then I've also been looking at Rene Herse's knobby version of the Barlow, I wonder how they wear?

I have the 38mm Barlow Pass and 38mm Steilacooms, both Extralight. I would go with ExtraLight if you can manage. I ride stuff a lot nastier stuff without issue. I've always run them with tubes. They sell a Panaracer sealant they say works well with their tires, but I haven't tried it. The sidewalls are thin and tend to weep if you use Stans or Orange Seal, from what I have been told. The tires wear surprisingly well. I've only replaced one so far. They last much longer than the Clement XPLOR tires I used to use.

If you don't mind reading their own info: https://www.renehersecycles.com/how-...e-herse-tires/

We also have a deliberative, objectively-detached review thread here: Compass Tire Hype: Warning
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Old 07-06-20, 09:50 AM
  #12  
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Originally Posted by bretton007 View Post
I have the G ones now , I find them a bit slow on pavement which I ride 60% of the time . Maybe its me ,I have nothing to compare them to . Its time for new tires so I want to make sure I get the right ones. Thanks
G-ones are some of the best tires out there. Most gravel tires are in the 25-28watt/tire range (gross generalization here, but anyway). There isn't a huge difference unless you ride a stiff brick. Cont's terra speed is a little faster, but honestly I can't tell much difference between them and the G-ones.

I do ride 32mm GP5000 which are perfect summer/fall (i.e. dry conditions) tires for me (as our gravel can be smoother than our asphalt). They are a lot faster if a slick works for you. If not, the G-ones are going to be one of the faster tires.
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Old 08-11-20, 04:13 PM
  #13  
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Originally Posted by chas58 View Post
G-ones are some of the best tires out there. Most gravel tires are in the 25-28watt/tire range (gross generalization here, but anyway). There isn't a huge difference unless you ride a stiff brick. Cont's terra speed is a little faster, but honestly I can't tell much difference between them and the G-ones.

I do ride 32mm GP5000 which are perfect summer/fall (i.e. dry conditions) tires for me (as our gravel can be smoother than our asphalt). They are a lot faster if a slick works for you. If not, the G-ones are going to be one of the faster tires.
Found this thread by searching and am intrigued by the idea of using a 32C slick for light-duty gravel. What kind of pressure do you ride? I've been debating jumping into tubeless and trying 35C Terra Speed or 35C Allround, but worry that they'll feel really slow on road. I currently swap between tubed 28C GP5000's for road, and 33C CX tires for off road. The CX tires I have are great for the gravel/dirt trails and roads around here, but feel heavy and slow on pavement. Once I mount up tubeless, it'll be harder to swap tires so I'd like to find something that can work for both.

My shopping list is basically:

32c GP5000 TL's (290 grams)
32c or 35c Gravel King (not SK) (290-310g)
35c Conti Terra Speed (360g)
35c Schwalbe G-One Allround tubeless (375g)

I also found the 30C G-One Speed, but I have a feeling that size isn't enough tire for dirt/gravel.

In 32C size, the Gravel King's don't seem to have any advantage over the GP5000's. 35C Gravel Kings are intriguing though, and wondering how those roll on pavement compared to the 32C GP5000's. I've read lots of good things about the G-one Allround and Conti Terra Speed's but worry that the extra weight and tread will feel slow on-road compared to the GP5000.

Any additional thoughts? I'm probably overthinking this, but I really hate the feeling of heavy/slow tires when doing longer road rides, so the idea of using a 32C GP5000 that I can still take on some light-duty off road is intriguing.
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Old 08-11-20, 05:33 PM
  #14  
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Depends on the gravel type, of course..

I bought a bike fitted with Continental travel contact tires,,
a smooth center fir that 60%, Knobby fringe for that gravel road 40%..
the store bing found only has 2 of their many sizes, .. there are other sellers..

It's an adventure touring tire..

Last edited by fietsbob; 08-11-20 at 05:42 PM.
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Old 08-11-20, 05:39 PM
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32mm gatorskin works on any hard surface gravel, with loose surface you'll probably want 650b 47mm+
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Old 08-12-20, 09:01 AM
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The thing that shocked me about the 32mm GP5000 was how fast they were.
Realistically, a Gatorskin, 4 season, Terraspeed, Rambler, Gravel King (slick) are all pretty similar speed wise. The GP5000 has half the rolling resistance. Half of a slick (and 1/3 of most treaded gravel tires). I do some competitive road rides where I'm on my gravel bike, ~50psi, sprinting to the front of the pack - and it really generates shock and amazement from the tiny tire crowd (generally I'm the only one bigger than 28mm). Riding solo, its about a 10% speed improvement.

There is a significant construction difference between the tubed and tubeless version. Tubeless has thicker cords (twice the size) and more meat on the sidewall (it holds air without sealant). The tubed versions look as flimsy as any "race" tire. So, while the tubed version worries me on gravel, I feel a lot more confident with the tubed version. Its not gonna rip as easily.

Pressure: Off road 40f/50r. pavement only 50f/60r

The terraspeed and allround are good tires and really, aren't noticably slower than something like a gatorskin.

Jan Heine wrote a good article articulating that a slick is as good as a knobby for gravel (see bicycle quarterly). He makes good points, but missed a few things
1) if you are going to slide - treaded tires drift a lot better. Slicks tend to let go very fast.
2) Slicks on wet grass or mud are just a bad thing. Gritty sandy dirt or pavement they are fine.

Our roads are crap in winter and spring. They get graded and chlorided in the spring, so are chuncky after grading. But in summer and fall they can be as smooth as asphalt - so I ride 32mm in the summer and fall, 40mm (or larger) in winter and spring.

For your other tires -
I dont have the SK, but it isn't as fast as the GP5000. The 35mm slick could be a good tire if you needed the volume.
Terraspeed - One of the best tires out there - sticky, fast, comfortable. But it wears pretty fast.
Allround - its hard to tell the difference between this and the terraspeed on the bike, but they seem to be wearing longer. They are amazing in the wet and in snow.

Originally Posted by msu2001la View Post
Found this thread by searching and am intrigued by the idea of using a 32C slick for light-duty gravel. What kind of pressure do you ride? I've been debating jumping into tubeless and trying 35C Terra Speed or 35C Allround, but worry that they'll feel really slow on road. I currently swap between tubed 28C GP5000's for road, and 33C CX tires for off road. The CX tires I have are great for the gravel/dirt trails and roads around here, but feel heavy and slow on pavement. Once I mount up tubeless, it'll be harder to swap tires so I'd like to find something that can work for both.

My shopping list is basically:

32c GP5000 TL's (290 grams)
32c or 35c Gravel King (not SK) (290-310g)
35c Conti Terra Speed (360g)
35c Schwalbe G-One Allround tubeless (375g)

I also found the 30C G-One Speed, but I have a feeling that size isn't enough tire for dirt/gravel.

In 32C size, the Gravel King's don't seem to have any advantage over the GP5000's. 35C Gravel Kings are intriguing though, and wondering how those roll on pavement compared to the 32C GP5000's. I've read lots of good things about the G-one Allround and Conti Terra Speed's but worry that the extra weight and tread will feel slow on-road compared to the GP5000.

Any additional thoughts? I'm probably overthinking this, but I really hate the feeling of heavy/slow tires when doing longer road rides, so the idea of using a 32C GP5000 that I can still take on some light-duty off road is intriguing.
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Old 08-12-20, 09:21 AM
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Originally Posted by chas58 View Post
The thing that shocked me about the 32mm GP5000 was how fast they were.
Realistically, a Gatorskin, 4 season, Terraspeed, Rambler, Gravel King (slick) are all pretty similar speed wise. The GP5000 has half the rolling resistance. Half of a slick (and 1/3 of most treaded gravel tires). I do some competitive road rides where I'm on my gravel bike, ~50psi, sprinting to the front of the pack - and it really generates shock and amazement from the tiny tire crowd (generally I'm the only one bigger than 28mm). Riding solo, its about a 10% speed improvement.

There is a significant construction difference between the tubed and tubeless version. Tubeless has thicker cords (twice the size) and more meat on the sidewall (it holds air without sealant). The tubed versions look as flimsy as any "race" tire. So, while the tubed version worries me on gravel, I feel a lot more confident with the tubed version. Its not gonna rip as easily.

Pressure: Off road 40f/50r. pavement only 50f/60r

The terraspeed and allround are good tires and really, aren't noticably slower than something like a gatorskin.

Jan Heine wrote a good article articulating that a slick is as good as a knobby for gravel (see bicycle quarterly). He makes good points, but missed a few things
1) if you are going to slide - treaded tires drift a lot better. Slicks tend to let go very fast.
2) Slicks on wet grass or mud are just a bad thing. Gritty sandy dirt or pavement they are fine.

Our roads are crap in winter and spring. They get graded and chlorided in the spring, so are chuncky after grading. But in summer and fall they can be as smooth as asphalt - so I ride 32mm in the summer and fall, 40mm (or larger) in winter and spring.

For your other tires -
I dont have the SK, but it isn't as fast as the GP5000. The 35mm slick could be a good tire if you needed the volume.
Terraspeed - One of the best tires out there - sticky, fast, comfortable. But it wears pretty fast.
Allround - its hard to tell the difference between this and the terraspeed on the bike, but they seem to be wearing longer. They are amazing in the wet and in snow.

Really depends on terrain, but another fan of the Conti 5000TL 700x32. I have three wheelsets that I switch around based on what I plan to ride. I don't have a true road bike, so my Aspero is my road bike and gravel bike.

For road rides or road with light gravel I run the Conti 5000 TL 700x32, Incredible tires, roll really fast and make my gravel bike feel like a road bike. If I had a dedicated road bike, I would run these tires on it.
For true mixed road and gravel I just replaced a pair of Challenge Strada Bianca 700x36 TL with a pair of Panaracer GravelKing (smooth) 700x38c. The Challenge tires rode really great and handled really rocky terrain well, but the sidewalls deteriorated and wore too quickly, good tires but they didn't last. The Panaracers feel comparable but I don't have enough miles on them to truly compare yet.
For real gravel rides I love the WTB Resolute 700x42. A great gravel tire that rolls extremely well on pavement, without a doubt my favorite gravel tire.
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Old 08-12-20, 10:37 AM
  #18  
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Rene Herse slicks in whatever size you can fit, preferably in the Extralight version.

I run 38mm Barlow Pass tubeless. I use Orange Seal (this is what they used to recommend). No sidewall weeping.

Stupid fast on pavement, and a pillowy dream on rough/loose surfaces.

I ride a mix of pavement and gravel.
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Old 08-12-20, 10:52 AM
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Just ordered a set of 38mm Specialized Pathfinder Pros, they have good reviews, we'll see how they work out. I love the Terra Speeds, but they wear out pretty fast. Hopefully these will last a bit longer and still be fairly fast, while providing grip when I need it. I thought about trying out the new GravelKing SS, but I was afraid they wouldn't have enough grip if needed, they def look fast tho.
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Old 08-12-20, 11:30 AM
  #20  
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Originally Posted by chas58 View Post
The thing that shocked me about the 32mm GP5000 was how fast they were.
Realistically, a Gatorskin, 4 season, Terraspeed, Rambler, Gravel King (slick) are all pretty similar speed wise. The GP5000 has half the rolling resistance. Half of a slick (and 1/3 of most treaded gravel tires). I do some competitive road rides where I'm on my gravel bike, ~50psi, sprinting to the front of the pack - and it really generates shock and amazement from the tiny tire crowd (generally I'm the only one bigger than 28mm). Riding solo, its about a 10% speed improvement.

There is a significant construction difference between the tubed and tubeless version. Tubeless has thicker cords (twice the size) and more meat on the sidewall (it holds air without sealant). The tubed versions look as flimsy as any "race" tire. So, while the tubed version worries me on gravel, I feel a lot more confident with the tubed version. Its not gonna rip as easily.

Pressure: Off road 40f/50r. pavement only 50f/60r

The terraspeed and allround are good tires and really, aren't noticably slower than something like a gatorskin.

Jan Heine wrote a good article articulating that a slick is as good as a knobby for gravel (see bicycle quarterly). He makes good points, but missed a few things
1) if you are going to slide - treaded tires drift a lot better. Slicks tend to let go very fast.
2) Slicks on wet grass or mud are just a bad thing. Gritty sandy dirt or pavement they are fine.

Our roads are crap in winter and spring. They get graded and chlorided in the spring, so are chuncky after grading. But in summer and fall they can be as smooth as asphalt - so I ride 32mm in the summer and fall, 40mm (or larger) in winter and spring.

For your other tires -
I dont have the SK, but it isn't as fast as the GP5000. The 35mm slick could be a good tire if you needed the volume.
Terraspeed - One of the best tires out there - sticky, fast, comfortable. But it wears pretty fast.
Allround - its hard to tell the difference between this and the terraspeed on the bike, but they seem to be wearing longer. They are amazing in the wet and in snow.
Originally Posted by gravelED View Post
Really depends on terrain, but another fan of the Conti 5000TL 700x32. I have three wheelsets that I switch around based on what I plan to ride. I don't have a true road bike, so my Aspero is my road bike and gravel bike.

For road rides or road with light gravel I run the Conti 5000 TL 700x32, Incredible tires, roll really fast and make my gravel bike feel like a road bike. If I had a dedicated road bike, I would run these tires on it.
For true mixed road and gravel I just replaced a pair of Challenge Strada Bianca 700x36 TL with a pair of Panaracer GravelKing (smooth) 700x38c. The Challenge tires rode really great and handled really rocky terrain well, but the sidewalls deteriorated and wore too quickly, good tires but they didn't last. The Panaracers feel comparable but I don't have enough miles on them to truly compare yet.
For real gravel rides I love the WTB Resolute 700x42. A great gravel tire that rolls extremely well on pavement, without a doubt my favorite gravel tire.
Thanks for the feedback. I just ordered some 32C GP5000 TLs (along with orange seal, some removable valve cores, tubeless stems, one of those syringe kits, an air shot... wow) and will give them a try. Hearing that the are a little more stout than the tubed version sold me on this. The width should be fine, I haven't rode anything wider than a 33c CX tire anyway, so this should be pretty close but roll a lot faster.

I've had a few different Challenge tires over the years and your description is exactly my experience. Their CX tubulars are amazing, but really expensive and last about 3 months.
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Old 08-12-20, 01:31 PM
  #21  
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Take a look at the Maxxis Refuse. It's a file tread gravel/all-road tire. I'm about 200 miles into a set of 700 x 40, coming from Maxxis Ramblers (great tires too, but with tread), and I'm really liking them. For mixed road and trail they do well, with the limits being loose surfaces (dusty or wet), but I'm really liking them.
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Old 08-12-20, 02:38 PM
  #22  
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Originally Posted by msu2001la View Post
Thanks for the feedback. I just ordered some 32C GP5000 TLs (along with orange seal, some removable valve cores, tubeless stems, one of those syringe kits, an air shot... wow) and will give them a try. Hearing that the are a little more stout than the tubed version sold me on this. The width should be fine, I haven't rode anything wider than a 33c CX tire anyway, so this should be pretty close but roll a lot faster.

I've had a few different Challenge tires over the years and your description is exactly my experience. Their CX tubulars are amazing, but really expensive and last about 3 months.
I'll throw some caveats in here.

In the interest of safety (and high pressure) conti has gone very very conservative on the bead design - to the point that they are practically un-mountable on some rims. They are much, much tighter than the tubed version, and even tigher than some Schwalbe tubless. If you have rims that are slightly oversized, they may not go on. I'm thinking they would probably work on my DT swiss rims, but I put them on some hookless carbon rims (which must be slightly oversized) and for the first time in my life, I was defeated. Took them to a shop where it took two stronger guys over 30 minutes to mount the tires (they took it as a challenge!).

It says "hooked rims only" but I heard a conti engineer clarify that they are ok on hookless rims as long as you don't go over 5 bar. Doesn't matter what the tire is, I'm not going over 5 bar hookless - or really anything tubeless. I just can't seeing having a blowout at speed at high pressure and low volume.
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Old 08-12-20, 02:41 PM
  #23  
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Take a look at the Maxxis Refuse. It's a file tread gravel/all-road tire. I'm about 200 miles into a set of 700 x 40, coming from Maxxis Ramblers (great tires too, but with tread), and I'm really liking them. For mixed road and trail they do well, with the limits being loose surfaces (dusty or wet), but I'm really liking them.
I wanted to like those, but everything I read says they are stiff and heavy (unlike the Rambler). At 4 times the rolling resistance of the GP500, I'm gonna pass...
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Old 08-12-20, 02:51 PM
  #24  
tyrion
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If you're on a budget and don't mind orange tires, go to ebay and search for "soma supple vitesse" - they're often under $50 for the orange colored ones. They are similar in weight to Rene Herse tires.
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Old 08-13-20, 08:54 AM
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I just replaced my tubeless Gravel King slicks in 38c with another pair. Probably got over 2.2k of road, gravel and dirt miles on them. They had a little more life in them but the rear tire was showing a few wet spots (sealant coming through cuts) so I replaced them. I like the speed of them especially for gravel. I would also like to try the GP5000 for road use and could use my old wheel set (just can't bear to take off my new wheels yet).
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