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Old 07-21-12, 06:41 AM   #1
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kenda tubes vs specialized (or more general)

I have a number of cheap kenda tubes and some relatively expensive Specialized tubes.
They are both their entry level tubes so I was wondering if there is a different in them. I have to pay 4x as much for the Specialized.

Are the specialized supposed to be lighter or have better quality control?

Also does this apply to all bike tube companies.

In my mind if the tube is thicker its just a bit more puncture resistant which is fine in my books and I've nver had one come with a puncture.
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Old 07-21-12, 07:21 AM   #2
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I use Schwalbe tubes on my daily riders and long haul bikes. The neighborhood cruisers get what ever is on sale. I suspect there isn't much difference between a Kenda and Specialized other than the fact you are paying for the name and all the advertising for Specialized. Quite often the manufacturer's name will be on the tube and it doesn't match the name on the box.

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Old 07-21-12, 08:57 AM   #3
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For puncture resistance thru greater thickness of inner tube ,
ask for Heavy-duty , Thorn -Resistant tubes much thicker,
retain air much longer too..
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Old 07-23-12, 06:48 AM   #4
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Here's something from Sheldon Brown's web page on inner tubes:

Butyl vs Latex
Before World War II, tires and tubes were made from natural latex rubber, harvested from tropical trees. When the supply of natural latex was insecure during the war, a substitute, "butyl" was invented. Butyl turned out to be a very successful substitute, better, in fact, than latex for this application. All modern tires and most inner tubes use butyl rubber.

Some riders prefer latex inner tubes, because they can be a bit lighter than butyl ones. Some riders believe that latex tubes have less rolling resistance than butyl.

Latex tubes are commonly a bit more porous than butyl ones, and need to have their pressure topped off more often.
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Old 07-23-12, 09:55 PM   #5
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Are you comparing apples to apples? Some tubes are certainly thicker (heavy duty and/or thorn resistant) and some are ultra light and designed for racing.

Bicycle Magazine had an article a while ago in which they opined that tubes are tubes (when comparing similar types) and that the cost or manufacturer makes little difference. They recommended buying the cheapest tubes available. The only tubes I've had a problem with are Performance/Forte tubes because I don't think the presta valves are very durable and I question the quality control due to some splitting. I use either Specialized or Bontrager tubes and have had good luck with each. Both are only $5.00 and cheaper when the LBS runs a sale.
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Old 07-23-12, 10:51 PM   #6
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I buy generic tubes and light tubes. If I change a tube at home, I use a generic tube. I fold the light tubes as tight as possible and carry them in my seatbag or pocket for roadside emergencies.

In my experience, the light tubes are just as good as regular weight tubes for puncture resistance. The ultra light tubes aren't as good.
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