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Who Uses Folding Tires? Why?

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Who Uses Folding Tires? Why?

Old 11-21-07, 12:11 PM
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DnvrFox
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Who Uses Folding Tires? Why?

Who Uses Folding Tires? Why?

When I first got my Lemond in 1999, it seemed that folding tires were all the rage. I still have a folding Conti Ultra 3000 which was originally on the bike. However, I found that the Conti 3000's sidewalls were deteriorating quickly, and changed tires, keeping the one good folding tire as an emergency spare.

So, does anyone use folding tires? Why or why not?

I am needing to replace my Specialized Armadillos and am looking at other options. The thread about Conti Gators doesn't encourage me, especially after my experience with the 3000's sidewalls. (However, I did like the Conti Ultra 2000's- wire bead, except the goatheads got in easily.)

Any thoughts on folding tires?

Last edited by DnvrFox; 11-21-07 at 12:24 PM.
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Old 11-21-07, 12:19 PM
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On the road I use folders for lightness- no other reason but the MTB I find an extra reason, They handle better. The sidewall have a bit more flex to them and on technical parts of the trail- I can feel the confidence this gives me. I use Fire XC's and have tried wire bead for cheapness- and when flush I got folders. Same trails-bike and rider and Folders do work for me.

As to whether the folders are better on the road- Other than lightness- I would not like to comment.
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Old 11-21-07, 12:33 PM
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I use folding kevlar bead tires on my go-fast bike because they are lighter. I also own a folding bead tire that i take with me on vacation for use as a spare. Otherwise I use all wire bead tires.

Incidentally, as I mentioned in another thread, the two bikes that I ride the most miles both have 28mm Gatorskin tires. I think that they ride better than Armadillos. I've not had any flats or other difficulties with them. I don't live in goat head country however.
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Old 11-21-07, 12:47 PM
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not being a weight weenie, I'm not conerned about a few +/- grams , however, I've never thought about the difference.

I have both types on my bikes...for the trails I use Kenda Nevegals, Karma Pro Stickees, and Karmalites...all folding, but not bought for this reason

My hybrids all have wire or kevlar beads...mostly Kendas, Panaracers, and Schwalbs

my asphalt bikes have Conti Super Sports (23c's), Bontrager (28c's), Vittoria Zafiro's (28c's)...all with beads (I think)...

...but have never thought about folding/non folding
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Old 11-21-07, 12:48 PM
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I like the folding kevlar bead tires for their lightness, but have no problem what so ever with wire bead tires either. Both the Vittoria 'Rubino Pros' and now the Michelin 'Krylion Carbons i've used are foldups and proved to be excellent tires for the money. The foldup tires, when new, may sometimes be hard to mount, as compared to wire bead, but thats the only caveat I see out of them. They're excellent!!
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Old 11-21-07, 12:51 PM
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I use folding primarily because they are easier to get, I buy most of my tires on-line since the prices are generally 20% or so cheaper than at the LBS. Currently GP4000 23s are my tire of choice
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Old 11-21-07, 01:25 PM
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I used wired beaded tires exclusively the first few years I started riding. Then one day I had just come down a fast 1+ mile descent with a top speed around 50 mph and as I was slowing the rear tire blew out. It was so loud it sounded like a cannon going off. After getting to a safe stop and spending some time to determine the cause of the blowout, I found that the sidewall had come unwrapped from around the wire bead. The tube pushed out and of the sidewall and thus the nice loud boom.

I couldn't imagine what would have happened had the tire blow just seconds before. Or even worse had it been my front wheel. I was 40 miles from my car, 120 miles from my house and no way to fix the darn thing.

I checked the rim repeatedly to see if there were burrs or rough spots to create the problem but it was just the tire.

I just wouldn't feel safe riding on the darn things anymore. Only kevlar beads for me now.

Still get the jibbies thinking about if that tire had been on the front wheel.......
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Old 11-21-07, 01:54 PM
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There are probably a few exceptions and this will start a war but it has been my impression that the best tires out there are folders and their lesser brethren have wire beads. I must admit however that I use Kenda tires almost exclusively and this may have a lot to do with my opinion.
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Old 11-21-07, 01:59 PM
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I prefer kevlar beaded folders because I find them easier to get on and off the rim. I never thought of all the other reasons people state here.
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Old 11-21-07, 02:00 PM
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I use folders exclusively, have used Bontrager, Vredestein, Vittoria. I have 2500 miles on a set of Rubino Pro Slicks, only one flat and that was a valve coming loose, no puncture. I have rotated them. I have a new set of Michelin Pro 2 Race's, gonna mount before riding season next year, keeping the Vittorias on for trainer time. Our roads around here are surprisingly easy on tires, not all smooth but usually clean and no hills. My riding buddies ride Michelins and Contis and they rarely have flats, too.
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Old 11-21-07, 02:07 PM
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I have Panaracer Pasela TG's on two hybrids. A hair lighter than wire bead tires but otherwise I can't tell any difference. Kinda weird mounting the first set after decades of wire-bead tires.
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Old 11-21-07, 02:24 PM
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I have one folder that I carry as a spare on longer rides, otherwise I am happy with standard tires
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Old 11-21-07, 02:38 PM
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I use both. I like the folders because they are a little lighter. Kind of offsets the extra weight of the Tour Guard belt on the Pasela TG's. I'm not much of a weight weenie, but I can feel big differences in tire weight. But I am running wire bead tires on my Bridgestone now that are lighter than many foldables, and much cheaper. Usually, I also find folding tires easier to mount and dismount without tools.
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Old 11-21-07, 02:58 PM
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Originally Posted by cyclinfool View Post
I prefer kevlar beaded folders because I find them easier to get on and off the rim. I never thought of all the other reasons people state here.
+1

I had a horrible time changing a flat until I switched to the folders.
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Old 11-21-07, 03:39 PM
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Both. Some of the tires I use such as Michelin Pro 2 Race are only available in Kevlar bead. I've never noticed much difference between Kevlar and wire bead, when it comes to mounting.

My favorite wire bead tire is the Conti Ultra 2000. At 260 grams for the 23mm, it's fairly light, relatively inexpensive, and a good performer. The bummer is that it has been discontinued.

Last edited by Louis; 11-21-07 at 06:14 PM.
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Old 11-21-07, 05:09 PM
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I unfold the Michelin Pro Race 2 tires and leave them hanging on the brackets in the garage. That way, when I change them after 4,000 miles, its nice and compliant.
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Old 11-21-07, 05:12 PM
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Originally Posted by Louis View Post
relatively inexpensive, and a good performer. The bummer is that it has been discontinued.
I might put this on my tombstone!!!

Last edited by Big Paulie; 11-21-07 at 10:51 PM.
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Old 11-21-07, 05:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Big Paulie View Post
I might put this on my tombstone!!!
Good one, BP.

I use an odd-sized tire on my Bike Friday, so having an extra couple (or more) tubes and a folding tire is almost required for any ride that takes me on tour.
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Old 11-21-07, 06:20 PM
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I use both, folding on my LeMond because thats what it came with, wire bead on everything else. I have had no trouble with folding and get good wear from the Bontragers. I replaced the rear tire at about 5,000 miles and the front is still good at 6.000 miles.
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Old 11-21-07, 07:22 PM
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I recently put a cheap set of Nashbar (Cheng Chen) wire bead 23mm tires on my bike. They are light, run smooth, appear to be well constructed and corner well. At $8 each, I don't even care if they wear out fast. But I see no indication that they will.
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Old 11-22-07, 08:00 AM
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Folding tires required as spare on tour so that they can be packed. I find them easier to change than wire beads but that is personal preference. I use some of both kinds on my bikes.
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Old 11-22-07, 04:34 PM
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Originally Posted by maddmaxx View Post
...I use Kenda tires almost exclusively...

maddmaxx, what is it about Kenda tires that makes you use them almost exclusively? Is there something about their design or construction that is technologically superior to others?

The reason I ask is that my Fuji road bike came equipped with Kenda tires, and I have gotten extremely good service from them.
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Old 11-22-07, 07:44 PM
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The design of the MTB were such that I needed a dual purpose reasonably light semi-slick tire and the Kenda Kosmic Lite filled the bill. I have been using that same style of tire for several years now with excellect results (both performance and longevity).

Becaus of that experience I began to use the Kenda Kaliente Iron Cloak tire in 23mm size on the road bike. They have grip, excellent anti flat protection and they are reasonably inexpensive (I suspect the latter because it appears that Kenda has been subsidizing their arrival in the road tire business by keeping the price low). They ride a little harsh at the rated 120psi but more comfortabily at 110. Their lifespan is not as great as I have heard posted here (1500 to 2000 miles by my estimation) but since I put new tires on the bike every year for performance/safety reasons that has not been a problem for me. The less expensive Kenda's that come on many OEM bikes seem to have a much shorter life but at only $12 a tire that seems reasonable. Kenda has just started an add campaign that shows 2 new performance tires in their range but I have no experience with those.
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Old 11-22-07, 08:56 PM
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I run Michelin Pro Race 2's. They are folders. One nice thing about folders is they fold up and fit nicely in a small zip lock bag, small enough that I carry a spare tire on my longer rides.
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Old 11-22-07, 09:58 PM
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Have used folding kevlar beaded tires exclusively for at least 4 years on tandem and my racing single.
Good mileage, lighter and much easier to mount/dismount than most wire beaded ones. Price is about the same too.
Can actualy remove/install them without use of tire levers 95% of the time.
Pedal on TWOgether!
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