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Best Anti-Goat Head Tire I Have Found

Old 08-04-18, 01:19 PM
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Best Anti-Goat Head Tire I Have Found

For those of you living in places where Tribulus Terrestris, AKA "goat heads" are a problem, I have found a pretty decent tire for dealing with them, fairly inexpensive too. These are 28's.



I have been running these Soma Everwhere 5MM tires locally with great success. They are marketed as a fixie tire, I'm not sure quite why. But I saw some at the LBS a while back and noticed how tough the outside of the tire felt. almost as if it were impregnated with cement or asphalt or something. They have a very tough, thick layer of this material over most of the exposed area of the tire, and the sidewalls are very flexible but short.

I have quite few miles riding these on dirt roads and along railroad tracks where other tires I have tried will flat during almost every ride due to goat heads, these have not flatted once. The penalty is that they are not light, but they are cheap, I think I paid $20 each for them.

I have not tried them on any high speed mountain descents, my instinct is that they may not be the best for that, but if you get sick of flat tires after nearly every single ride like I have experienced, and are about ready to lose your mind with frustration, you need to make a few compromises in the weight dept.

I am not running slime or thorn-proof tubes, I refuse to do that, but these particular tires are holding up particularly well, so I thought i would let other people know.. If if saves somebody JUST ONE FLAT TIRE, this thread will not have been in vain.
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Old 08-04-18, 02:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Colnago Mixte
For those of you living in places where Tribulus Terrestris, AKA "goat heads" are a problem, I have found a pretty decent tire for dealing with them, fairly inexpensive too. AFAIK, they only come in 28mm, so clearance may be a problem on some road bikes.





I have been running these Soma Everwhere 5MM tires locally with great success. They are marketed as a fixie tire, I'm not sure quite why. But I saw some at the LBS a while back and noticed how tough the outside of the tire felt. almost as if it were impregnated with cement or asphalt or something. They have a very tough, thick layer of this material over most of the exposed area of the tire, and the sidewalls are very flexible but short.


I have quite few miles riding these on dirt roads and along railroad tracks where other tires I have tried will flat during almost every ride due to goat heads, these have not flatted once. The penalty is that they are not light, but they are cheap, I think I paid $20 each for them.


I have not tried them on any high speed mountain descents, my instinct is that they may not be the best for that, but if you get sick of flat tires after nearly every single ride like I have experienced, and are about ready to lose your mind with frustration, you need to make a few compromises in the weight dept.


I am not running slime or thorn-proof tubes, I refuse to do that, but these particular tires are holding up particularly well, so I thought i would let other people know.. If if saves somebody JUST ONE FLAT TIRE, this thread will not have been in vain.

I actually have infrequent flats, however Feathers fell to a goat head just last week. Fritz (my day to day draft horse) has Kevlar reinforced tires and recently flatted on a some sort of tiny metal spike. It was actually funny because flats are so infrequent that I decided to give the tire a good looking over and I couldn't BELIEVE how much junk I dug out with my gasket puller. There was a ton of glass embedded in the rubber, plus areas where chunks had been gouged out but still none of that resulted in a flat.


So what do the soma tires use to protect against flats?


Oh, BTW, if you haven't already, get a gasket puller, it's awesome!

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Old 08-04-18, 02:31 PM
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I have not read up on them, but if you look at the tires in person, you'll notice how tough the outside surface of the tire is. The closest I can describe would be something like an asphalt road.

It's not the kind of surface that goat heads need to get started at penetrating a tire. Goat heads absolutely LOVE the really soft thin sidewalls of tires like GP 4000's, but the sidewalls of this tire are almost like a road surface. When was the last time you saw a goat head stuck in asphalt?. I can't reckon ever seein' that.

Like I say, I have had really good luck with these, YMMV. But where I live goat head vines are almost everywhere, especially in vacant lots, along the sides of roads, and within the past few years, I have begun to see more and more of them them growing inside of cracks in the road, so even though you're riding on pavement, they can still give you flats.

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Old 08-04-18, 04:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Colnago Mixte
... They are marketed as a fixie tire, I'm not sure quite why. ...
Their marketed as fix gear tire because of that tread that can take may skids with minimal wear. Also probably little enough grip that the rider is not likely to pull muscles attempting to start a skid.

Funny story - I was looking for a good, reliable, grippy tire for winter commuting in Portland. I was a regular customer of the #1 fix gear shop. The owner told me he just got in some tires that should be just the ticket for me. I bought a pair and liked them. Comes time to start thinking about the next pair so I went back to the shop. He no longer carried them and had sent his stash back. Why? Because too many in the fix gear crowd were returning them and asking for their money back. Seems the tires gripped so well that even the skilled riders were hurting themselves trying to start their skids.

Ben
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Old 08-04-18, 04:56 PM
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Interesting. I imagine these would be a disaster in rain, and probably challenge the rider's handling skills a bit. Maybe also the wear might not be that great, I guess I will find out.

But hey, every day I ride and don't get at least one flat, is a good day.
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Old 08-04-18, 06:35 PM
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If they came fatter, I would try them.
I am running Vittesse, and they succumbed to Yellow Star Thistle, the weaker little brother of the Goat Head.

Got 5 punctures after going down a single track flanked by them.

Gonna try the SOMA Shikoro see how they do.
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Old 08-07-18, 06:01 PM
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Some updates, I went back to my LBS, and found out these are closer to $50 tires than $20, depending on retail markup. I just got a really killer deal on them because they were on sale.

Also, I found out they are made in Japan, and are available in 23, 26, 28, and 32, which I though was good news. The only bad news is that Soma is out every size but 23 mm.

Everwear 5mm | SOMA Fabrications

I did see some available on Ebay in various colors, and at decent prices. I won't link to those, but it's anyone's guess as to whether they actually have the tires in stock if even Soma is out of them.

I also saw an Amazon review where someone complained they were difficult to take off the rim, which I will admit is true, but they're not THAT tough to work with, and if they stay as flat-proof as they've been for me, this will be a non-issue.

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Old 08-07-18, 08:45 PM
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Originally Posted by rgconner
If they came fatter, I would try them.
I am running Vittesse, and they succumbed to Yellow Star Thistle, the weaker little brother of the Goat Head.

Got 5 punctures after going down a single track flanked by them.

Gonna try the SOMA Shikoro see how they do.
Dude... they always do... Just gotta look around, I'm sure you can find the fatter one that's right for you!
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Old 08-08-18, 12:19 PM
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I'm mostly a Gatorskin guy. Flats happen, but rarely. Gators are usually pretty bulletproof for me. That being said, I did get stopped by a goat head up at Lake Casitas, CA. in the parking lot, not on the road. When I checked the tire, I found 5 broken off embedded thorns that apparently didn't penetrate the tire, but it only takes one that does. Never seen the Somas, but thanks for the heads up.

I've also been happy with Pasela PTs on my vintage Raleigh. One day I had two flats in the rear Pasela, riding on smooth pavement. When I got home I put in a new tube in, and a few days later, did a 12 mile gravel fire road, 44 miles total, no trouble at all. When it's your time, it's your time to flat. Those two in one day are the only ones in over 2000 miles on the Paselas, on dirt, gravel and pavement.

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Old 08-10-18, 01:18 PM
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Best anti goat head tires are pretty much any tubeless tires with sealant in them. I am currently testing the sealant in the tube method now as I use up the last of my tubed tires.
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Old 08-10-18, 01:36 PM
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Problem with sealant in tube is that sealant leaks out all over the place and makes a huge mess. I guess in theory, it can work, but the setup is quite heavy, thornproof tubes, same deal,

I'd like to think tubeless + sealant might be the way to go, but I have not yet tried it. How much does the sealant weigh?
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Old 08-10-18, 02:19 PM
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Originally Posted by DanBraden
Dude... they always do... Just gotta look around, I'm sure you can find the fatter one that's right for you!
Are we still taking about fatty tires?

Cuz I am thinking we are talking about a different kind of rolling fatties now.


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Old 08-10-18, 02:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Colnago Mixte
Problem with sealant in tube is that sealant leaks out all over the place and makes a huge mess. I guess in theory, it can work, but the setup is quite heavy, thornproof tubes, same deal,

I'd like to think tubeless + sealant might be the way to go, but I have not yet tried it. How much does the sealant weigh?
If it's just a goat head making the puncture, then there isn't much of a mess. It will seal up on a revolution or three. Now, if its a larger cut from like glass or something, that can get a little more messy. Still you can clean it up at home while drinking your recovery beer in a climate controlled location and not have to mess with tubes, heat, inflators or worse, the mini pump on the side of the road. I put in about 30ml per tire so the weight of the sealant is a little less than the weight of the tube. However, the tubeless tires in general do weigh a little more than the tubed tires and also the sealant gets absorbed into the tire over time so every few months, you have to top off so you in theory would then add some weight.
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Old 08-10-18, 03:06 PM
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Yeah, but the goad head, or 2 or 22, are still stuck in the tire. If you pull the goat head out, doesn't the tire start to leak again a second time?

My hope is that if I can just keep the goat head from ever penetrating anything, that's the way to go, Plus I like the idea of the $%#*& thorns that are trying to penetrate my tire, and getting crushed and broken off by my super-tough 5mm tire tread, that just makes my day.
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Old 08-12-18, 01:09 PM
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Took some pics today of Goat Head puncture vines growing in cracks in the road. Even past the white fog line into the driving lane. There's simply no avoiding them where I live.

Vehicles and tractors that drive through patches of them pick up dozens in their tires, then deposit them onto the road when they pull back onto the pavement. These plants are really tough, they can live on almost no water, and getting driven over by cars doesn't seem to bother them much.

There were none in the SF Bay Area when I lived there in the 60's and 70's, now they're quite widespread. Coming soon to an area near you!
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Old 08-17-18, 10:43 AM
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I replaced the Schwalbe Marathon tire on my rear wheel today. I installed it 23 months ago. I had no flats in all that time, despite picking up many goatheads. I had 12 flats on my front, first a Panasonic Pasela GT then a Thickslick, in that interval, all from goatheads. The Marathon had worn through in many places, some cracks 10mm long, some I could see through, but it wasn't even bulging. I probably could have gotten a few hundred more miles out of it, but I would have regretted the failure. It's a very hard tire; so much more tread had worn off on the bottom than the sides it was nearly square.
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Old 08-18-18, 11:16 AM
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Originally Posted by Arthur Peabody
I replaced the Schwalbe Marathon tire on my rear wheel today. I installed it 23 months ago. I had no flats in all that time, despite picking up many goatheads. I had 12 flats on my front, first a Panasonic Pasela GT then a Thickslick, in that interval, all from goatheads. The Marathon had worn through in many places, some cracks 10mm long, some I could see through, but it wasn't even bulging. I probably could have gotten a few hundred more miles out of it, but I would have regretted the failure. It's a very hard tire; so much more tread had worn off on the bottom than the sides it was nearly square.
How many miles is that though?
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Old 08-19-18, 09:36 AM
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Steve Greene who has done thousands of miles of cross country riding swears by Swalbe marathon plus tires. An example of price is a 26 x1.75 costs $48 on Amazon.
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Old 08-19-18, 08:06 PM
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I'm about ready to give up on pneumatic tires on the trike.
Slime Tire Liners plus 8 ounces of Slime Sealant in each tire, and I'm still getting flat tires!!!! Even when I stop and remove those daRn goatsheads or screws as soon as I see them and before they get driven in far enough to reach the tube!!!

They may weigh a lot (not that that matters much on the trike. it's probably close to 75-80 pounds already anyway.) but at least No-Mor-Flats "tubes" will ensure I can leave the tire pump at home.
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Old 08-20-18, 07:01 AM
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Originally Posted by jitteringjr
how many miles is that though?
9k
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Old 08-20-18, 09:48 AM
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Originally Posted by Colnago Mixte
Problem with sealant in tube is that sealant leaks out all over the place and makes a huge mess. I guess in theory, it can work, but the setup is quite heavy, thornproof tubes, same deal,

I'd like to think tubeless + sealant might be the way to go, but I have not yet tried it. How much does the sealant weigh?
The other issue besides the mess, for me, with the goop is that it plugs up my presta valve stems.

Last question first. Stan's (as an example) recommends 1-2 fluid ounces. Density of sealant is about 1 g/cm^3. So this is somewhere around 30 to 60 grams of sealant. Continenental Race tubes come in at 105g (at least that's what Conti claims), with the Race Lite being 65g. So tubes are heavier, by (on the order of) 5 to 75g per tire. If we use 1.5 ounces of sealant, and the heavier tubes, that's about a 60 g difference in favor of sealant. The sealant weight is more concentrated at the peripheral edges of the tire because of centrifugal force.
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