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Think Continental will ever "loosen" the fit?

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Think Continental will ever "loosen" the fit?

Old 08-01-21, 09:03 AM
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freeranger
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Think Continental will ever "loosen" the fit?

I just ordered some new tires. Didn't go with Continental, just because of the reputation of how hard it is to get on and off the rim. A friend has them on one of his bikes, said even with a tire bead jack it was very difficult to mount the tires. Doesn't sound like fun if had to repair or replace a tube while on a ride. Seems that Continental would be aware of this. Is there a reason why their tires must fit so tight, that they won't change. Seems like it could be done, and would result in increased sales. Whaddaya think?
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Old 08-01-21, 09:14 AM
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A lot of fitment problems have to do with rims that were made tighter in the last 10 years or so.

There was a huge push to move all bike rims to "tubeless". Yet, so far that doesn't seem to be what the consumers actually want.

I've done fine with the Continentals on a number of "Classic" rims.

It is hard to say how non-tubeless tires will evolve with the new tubeless craze.
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Old 08-01-21, 09:41 AM
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I've had 2 sets of Continentals, GP 4 Seasons and GP 5000, didn't have a problem fitting either tyre, the 5000's were fitted to tubeless ready wheels and went on with a little help with levers.
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Old 08-01-21, 09:45 AM
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The Conti's I have used have been good on the rims I have used them on. The last Conti I purchased has been a couple of years, I have no experience with any of the latest models. Two tires I really like: Vittoria Open Pave, 27mm; and Hutchinson Performance Fusion 5 all season, 28/32mm. That particular Hutchinson has gotten a lot more costly. I prefer latex tubes in both, especially for the Open Paves. What a great ride that combo gives, as a bonus, those tires emit sort of a unique buzzing/humming sound. For me, that really fits with the whole bicycle vibe. Just looked outside, the rain has stopped temporarily, going to get in a quick few miles.
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Old 08-01-21, 10:05 AM
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I've mounted a few sets of GP5000TLs tubeless with my thumbs. I'm hardly a gorilla. *shrug*

It comes down to the specific rim you're using, rim manufacturers can't seem to agree on something as basic as bead seat diameter tolerance... Spraying down the bead with soapy water and getting the entire bead in the center trough before trying to mount the last bit of the bead help a lot as well. After you run the tire for a few weeks, they tend to stretch just a bit and they're easier to get on and off.
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Old 08-01-21, 10:47 AM
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Originally Posted by freeranger View Post
I just ordered some new tires. Didn't go with Continental, just because of the reputation of how hard it is to get on and off the rim. A friend has them on one of his bikes, said even with a tire bead jack it was very difficult to mount the tires. Doesn't sound like fun if had to repair or replace a tube while on a ride. Seems that Continental would be aware of this. Is there a reason why their tires must fit so tight, that they won't change. Seems like it could be done, and would result in increased sales. Whaddaya think?
Tight-fitting tires are good if you have a flat at speed. They won't come off the rim and flop around. I assume this is why Continentals are the way they are.

I'd suggest thinner rim tape, and to keep working on your technique. The old advice was to start at the valve when mounting the beads and finish on the opposite side -- when you're mounting the second bead, try starting opposite the valve and finishing at the valve. This gives a little more slack when you need it.
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Old 08-01-21, 11:02 AM
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@ ThermionicScott--good point about flatting at speed. Don't know what rims my friend has that made mounting his Contis so difficult. He built a bamboo bike, works on firends bikes, and is a good mechanic, figure he'd have tire changing down, but maybe it's his technique (tho he said he was keeping the beads in the center channel), so probably the rims). My rims are the stock Bontrager that came on my '06 LeMond. Might have to try Contis after the ones I have coming wear out-other than mounting (and maybe others technique isn't great either), they seem to get very good reviews.
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Old 08-01-21, 12:30 PM
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I "feel ya". A few years ago I tried a pair of Continental Touring IIs for commuting. They were nice, but now every time I consider new tires and I see "Continental" I remember how stupid hard they were to mount and I pass.
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Old 08-01-21, 12:51 PM
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I put brand new Conti’s on my recumbent this spring. I put the chore off for like two months because of bad memories about installation. I slipped the new ones on just fine. They were 26x1.5. YMMV.
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Old 08-01-21, 01:47 PM
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I have relatively new Continental 5000's on a 1986 Klein Quantum. Could not get them on and ultimately let my LBS do it.

A few days ago had to fix a flat and barely got the tire on and off myself. So difficult that I am considering replacing them soon with something more manageable.
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Old 08-01-21, 01:54 PM
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5000s went on 15year old Mavic Open Pro rims went on by hand without too much prob. Haven't tried getting them off.

My tubular Sprinters (on 2 bikes) go on without a problem, but that's not what you run.
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Old 08-01-21, 03:19 PM
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No, not an issue for most.
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Old 08-01-21, 04:35 PM
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One thing about the Continentals with the cross hatch patttern (gator hardshells, gatorskins, 4-season, etc).

After I mount tires, I like to squeeze the tire and pull my fingers around the rim to straighten the valve just a touch. I did find doing so wasn't as effective as other brands. A lot harder to pull. So, perhaps a bit tight fitting. But, it also created a fuzzy mess out of the tires.

I DEFINITELY DO NOT RECOMMEND DOING THAT!!!

Fortunately, it didn't seem to impact the overall strength or durability of the tire. I also had other Continentals that the crossed fibers just got old without any specific damage.

My interpretation is that outer layer of fibers is simply cosmetic.

I did blow the bead off of one Gator Hardshell, 70 miles from new. I'm still not quite sure what caused the failure, but I attributed it to a slight over-pressure from mounting in the cool evening before the ride, and pumping it to my max pressure before a hot ride the next day.
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Old 08-01-21, 04:45 PM
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Sometimes it's the rim and not the tire that makes the tire install difficult...Sometimes it's lack of proper technique.
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Old 08-01-21, 05:32 PM
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My Conti Top Touring II tires are not difficult to mount.
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Old 08-01-21, 05:38 PM
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I admit to snapping a few tire levers with Gatorskins.
I now use a three lever technique that makes it tolerable.
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Old 08-01-21, 05:44 PM
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harder to mount on the alloy wheels than carbon has been my experience. After some use out on the road during the hot season, it became easier to dismount & mount.
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Old 08-01-21, 06:00 PM
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Seems the point has been well made but I'll chime in anyway. I just replaced a worn GP5000 with a new one. The old came off easily and the new mounted w/o drama, thumbs only, no levers. It's more about the rim. However, I wouldn't ride with a combo that was really difficult. You have to be able to fix a flat on the road. That may mean experimenting with tires and even wheels until you find what works. Don't be the slacker who has to call Mommy.
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Old 08-01-21, 09:06 PM
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Continentals haven’t generally been a problem. I had way more problem with Compass (now Rene Herse) RTP 26ers. Even hard to take on and off when they were worn out. Best rolling 26er but I replaced them with Continental Contact Speed, which (I have said more than once) are about 1000 times easier for me to deal with.

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Old 08-01-21, 10:23 PM
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The only Continental tires I've needed a bead jack to mount are Ultra Sport 2. Good tires but almost impossible to mount without a bead jack. And it doesn't get easier with repeated mounting/removing/remounting. Same tightness with both folding and wire bead versions of the Ultra Sport 2.

I also ride Conti GP Classic skinwalls, which are easy to mount without tools. And Conti Sport Contact 2 wire bead on my hybrid, also easy to mount by hand.

I've heard Gatorskins are difficult to mount on some wheels but I've never used them.

I've been tempted to try a farm-rigged tubeless setup with those Conti Ultra Sport 2 and a tubeless tape on a regular rim, just to see if the US2 tires are suitable for tubeless. They seem to be rubberized all around, with fairly thick, stiff sidewalls. They sure fit tightly enough, seems like it might work. But I keep my bikes in the spare room of my apartment, don't want to risk sealant blown all over the place if it fails.
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Old 08-01-21, 11:20 PM
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Originally Posted by CAT7RDR View Post
I admit to snapping a few tire levers with Gatorskins.
I now use a three lever technique that makes it tolerable.
One of my best low cost cycling investments was a set of metal tire levels. No more snapping the ends off. If I can’t wrestle the tire on with my bare hands, knowing I’ve got an “enforcer” in my tool kit is a great comfort. 😅
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Old 08-02-21, 05:55 AM
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I was told to never use tools to install tires. Only hands , fingers and muscle in order to reduce chance of pinch flats. I found this impossible with the Contis.
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Old 08-02-21, 06:06 AM
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Originally Posted by raceboy View Post
One of my best low cost cycling investments was a set of metal tire levels. No more snapping the ends off. If I can’t wrestle the tire on with my bare hands, knowing I’ve got an “enforcer” in my tool kit is a great comfort. 😅
I think the ideal though would be for the levers to be a bit more likely to break than your rims.
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Old 08-02-21, 06:23 AM
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Originally Posted by Hiro11 View Post
I've mounted a few sets of GP5000TLs tubeless with my thumbs. I'm hardly a gorilla. *shrug*

It comes down to the specific rim you're using, rim manufacturers can't seem to agree on something as basic as bead seat diameter tolerance... Spraying down the bead with soapy water and getting the entire bead in the center trough before trying to mount the last bit of the bead help a lot as well. After you run the tire for a few weeks, they tend to stretch just a bit and they're easier to get on and off.
I'm not sure exactly how this works. There are certainly some people who say they have no issue with GP5Ks, but what is often left out is the width of the tire being referenced.

Linked below, is an interesting small reference guide/chart showing ease of installation on 3 of their LB rims. Some tires are easy and some are hard. For tires that are hard to install, if there is a rim out there where it was easy, then I assume the 'easy' tires would almost fall onto those rims?

OTOH, perhaps it's the variations by the tire model width. Look at eg. GP5K 25mm vs 28mm tires. Universally, no matter which of the LB rims you select at the top, the 25mm is extremely hard to install, and the 28mm pretty easy.

OTOH again, contradicting this is to look at the Schwalbe Pro One TR 25mm results. An '8' in difficulty on LB's narrowest rim, but only a '2' on their widest hooked rim, while the Conti tire predictably got more difficult to install?

It's a strange relationship or issue; that seems evident.

https://www.lightbicycle.com/newslet...th-Charts.html
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Old 08-02-21, 06:25 AM
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I use a ton on Continental tires. Never need anything to mount them other than good technique and my hands. And I'm an old geezer.

Can't say the same for the Challenge tires I've used, LOL!
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