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Cross tires and road calipers?

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Cross tires and road calipers?

Old 05-14-09, 10:07 PM
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Cross tires and road calipers?

I'm looking at all the extra parts in my garage and wondering if I've almost got enough to put together a single speed cross bike. Fun, right? Just need some tires.

But for brakes I've only got tektro road calipers leftover after an upgrade to my wife's road bike. What is the widest cross tire a guy can use with a road caliper? Is it one of those deals where I have to deflate the tire to remove/install the wheel? because I could handle that. (Also, I wouldn't do anything too crazy on steep hills with those brakes...I've got a wife and kids to feed).

Thanks for the input.
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Old 05-14-09, 10:14 PM
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Which tektro calipers do you have? Like many brake manufacturers, they make both short reach and long reach calipers, as well as really long reach calipers for "country bikes", meaning something like 58-72mm of reach.

First find out which calipers you have.

Or just take the calipers to the bike shop and see what cross tires you can fit them around, either the tires hanging from a rack or see if they'll let you deflate a tire on a bike and then reinflate the tire with the caliper around it.

This is all assumming that you can get a frame that will fit a 700x32+ tire and let you run it with the caliper you already have.
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Old 05-15-09, 06:13 AM
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I've been reading up on this a little bit, with the intentions of putting 700x32 tires on my '03 Specialized Sequoia (came with 700x26, currently using 700x25). From my readings everyone with that era of Sequoia has been able to run 32c tires with the road brakes that came with it, using the deflate to mount/unmount method - they are long reach brake calipers. If you have short reach brakes, you might be sunk, maybe eBay them and find some long reach brakes?

Ditto the above of making sure tires that wide will fit through the frame. What frame are you planning on using? If you do have clearance problems, you might try finding a 700x28 tire you like.
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Old 05-15-09, 11:05 AM
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Thanks for the input. Here's my franken-bike plan. Motobecane Fly mountain bike frame for 26" wheels. There is a cross-piece above the rear tire that can be slightly drilled out to fit a standard road caliper, with some "persuasion." A 700c wheel fits nicely in the rear. Then I need to pick up a cross fork, probably just steel since it's much cheaper than carbon, and this bike isn't for performance. Then I'll run a tensioner and go single speed. TT-style handlebar with TT-style Cane Creek brake levers. The TT levers don't work on v-brakes, unless I use a travel adapter of some kind-thus my interest in using the calipers I already have. Like I said, this could be a real piece of work.

BTW-the calipers I have are short reach, but I think there is just enough room to make them line up on the rear wheel.

I just built up a full suspension mtb and my wife will kill me if I spend much more money.
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Old 05-17-09, 01:43 PM
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Tektro 538's will work with about a 35c tire. I've got 538's on my Steamroller with 32c tires, and plenty of extra room.
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Old 05-27-09, 12:12 AM
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long reach/ short reach has more to do with the distance from the brake bridge or the fork crown to the rim than anything else like tire diameter. If your bike uses short reach brakes currently, you likely won't get any benefit using long reach brakes to reach the same size rim.


Running a singleator chain tensioner lets you actually keep two front chainrings on and swap from say a 50 tooth big gear to a 42 tooth smaller gear with ease. It is an option I am considering on mine.
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