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What is everyone's favorite ~28mm tire?

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.

What is everyone's favorite ~28mm tire?

Old 06-26-13, 03:13 PM
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What is everyone's favorite ~28mm tire?

Hey all, not sure if im in the right subforum but my question has dirt content so here goes: I'm looking for suggestions for ~28mm tires suitable for road/gravel/groomed singletrack trail use. My cycling worldview has shifted from gofast racer to exploring the endless dirt roads and trails near my home in Boise Idaho. There are many cool looking roads and trails that I have never been on because they aren't long enought to be worth driving my car to to ride with my MTB and are impractically far away to ride the MTB to.

My roadie is an older steel Serotta Colorado II. I love it. The frame has clearance for up to 32mm tires but Im not sure anything larger than a 28mm will fit comfortably in the brake calipers. Hence my request for decent 28mm tires that can handle it all. I have looked at Panaracer Paselas and Tservs (Paselas with a stronger sidewall?) Vittoria Randos (ugh heavy) and Gatorskins (yikes spendy!).

Thanks in advance for your suggestions!

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Old 06-27-13, 05:07 AM
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Gatorskins ride like cement blocks. My buddy is very happy with his Continental Grand Prix 4-seasons. I've always been happy with Paselas. Challenge Parigi-Roubaix are very highly prized but perhaps not as tough as other options (and spendy). Check out https://www.rivbike.com/700c-Tires-s/110.htm I've always fancied the Rolly Polly or Jack Brown for their cool tread pattern. I've been very happy with my Clement Strada 23s and they come in 28. Try your LBS first and perhaps they have some nice deal.

No matter how burly the tire, bring a spare tire, or at the very least some duck tape to boot up a sidewall.
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Old 06-27-13, 07:25 AM
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I've used the Gatorskins in the 700x28 size. It's a good tire but not a great one and highly over-rated. It's more like a 700x26 in size and should be labeled as such. It rides hard, the sidewall are not tough enough for gravel, It has poor traction on wet pavement. The tread is durable for several thousand miles, but the sidewalls will fall apart well before the tread is fully worn. It's moderately flat resistant, but less so than many other tires.

I'm using the Vittoria Rubino Pro Tech in a 700x28 size with great results. It's a 4-season tire with a cold & wet weather tread compound. It measure out to 27.5 on a Sun CR18 rim that is 22.5mm wide. It is as flat resistant as a Gatorskin. It is tough enough for most gravel paths and roads. It has a smooth ride and it rolls well enough for faster group rides.

I'm also using the Challenge Parigi-Roubaix but have not fully formed an opinion yet. The are about 29mm wide on a Sun CR18 rim that is 22.5mm wide, they just fit on my vintage race bikes but do not fit on my modern road bike. The ride is good and they should be tough enough for reasonable quality gravel.

They are a real pain to install. They also lack any flat protection. Are they durable? We shall see.

I would consider the 700x32 Vittoria Cross XN Pro. These are moderately light, roll super fast, are tough enough for gravel and have some flat resistance. They provide a very smooth ride. These measure about 31mm wide on a Velocity A23 rim that is 23mm wide.

I'm also using the 700x32 Vittoria Voyager Hyper. These touring tires are moderately light, roll super fast, are tough enough for any gravel and have very good flat resistance. They also provide a very smooth ride. These measure about 31.5mm wide on a Velocity A23 rim that is 23mm wide.

All of these tires have enough traction for firm gravel that is dry. None of these are very useful on wet earth or silty gravel.
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Old 06-27-13, 08:52 AM
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Continental Grand Prix 4-seasons; buy online from UK - so much cheaper $50, vs $80
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Old 07-07-13, 06:16 PM
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Old 07-12-13, 08:44 PM
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I personally like the vittoria rubino pros you can get em on amazon for about half of what they retail for in the bike shops so for around 30 each vs 50-60ish in the store.
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Old 07-13-13, 12:23 AM
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Since I can, its a cross frame after all, I go to 32, the jack brown 33's are nice,
Panasonic Pasela 32 probably almost as good.
Actually Panasonic makes both..
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Old 07-13-13, 08:24 AM
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Schwalbe Marathon. Great tire, you don't need any kind of "dirt" tread for most trail/gravel/etc kind of riding.
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Old 07-17-13, 09:51 AM
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I have used Conti GP 4 Season 28s for commuting for several years and they are reasonably light, nice riding, durable and flat-resistant. My only complaint is that they are narrow, measuring about 26.5 mm on my wheels (Open Pros). I also have used Vittoria Rubino 25s -- which are available in 28s -- and I love these tires. They are light, have low resistance, handle well and measure true-to-size. I recently ordered some Rubino 28s but haven't installed them yet.

You might also consider Rivendell Rolly Polys or Ruffy Tuffys, which reportedly measure a true 28 mm. I have tried neither but have some Riv Jack Browns, which measure about 34 mm, but are made by the same company (Panaracer) with similar treads, casings and other characteristics. I love the Jack Browns so much that I will probably buy some Rolly Polys the next time I need some 28s. Ruffy Tuffys are the same tires with an added Kevlar belt and thicker tread, but weigh about 50g more per tire. If you tend to get a lot of flats, I would get the Ruffys. If you ride a lot of hills with decent roads, the Rollys would probably be a better choice.

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