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Mountain bikes on paved roads? Tires, handlebars, and seats.

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Mountain bikes on paved roads? Tires, handlebars, and seats.

Old 04-18-10, 03:13 PM
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Hamrick
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Mountain bikes on paved roads? Tires, handlebars, and seats.

Alrighty, so I have a cheap mountain bike, which I'll have to tell more about later, but one of the main questions I have is about the tires.

I usually ride my bike in dirt, fields, and gravel, but now am riding more on paved roads, where slicks would seem best, but....the road I take to get to the main roads is gravel, and there are a few rough patches on the paved roads. So even though the tires I have now will wear faster on roads, I live in the country, so should I keep them for the few rough spots?

One more thing; I've been looking, but can't find anything about suggestions for the "proper" seat to handlebar height. Any links? Right now, the seat is adjusted to me, but does having the handles higher than the seat affect anything besides weight distribution?

Any other "mountain bike on road" advice is appreciated.
Thanks.
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Old 04-18-10, 03:49 PM
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eds49721
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You can definitely find tires that will be better than knobbies for your type of riding.
Check out the Michelin country trail or country rock, Continental travel contact or town and country.
Those are semi slick but offer grip on the edges for gravel.
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Old 04-18-10, 05:20 PM
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innova swifter 26 x 2.0 for $10.95 from bike tires direct:

https://www.biketiresdirect.com/piksc...ty_tire/pp.htm
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Old 04-18-10, 05:39 PM
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You'd probably be fine with slicks on gravel. I don't think the knobs would do you much good on gravel anyways since they won't penetrate the surface. Loose soil and dirt is where knobbies shine. I assume you're getting a 26" tire that fits your mountain rim so pretty much anything available to you should work. On gravel you'd run in to problems if you were going with a tire that's too narrow, like you'd find on a road bike.

And if you want to continue optimizing your bike for the road (and assuming getting a road bike is out of the question) then consider a solid front fork.
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Old 04-18-10, 06:44 PM
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Kenda Kross works well for light trail stuff and good for the commuter rides. I have gone to 2 wheelsets so I can change out for off roading. The only hassle is adjusting the brakes changing wheelsets. The commuter rims are skinny Mavics, off roads are Rhyno lites.

Seat and bars don't make much difference to me. I like what I got. My frame is a '94, is yours older than that?
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Old 04-18-10, 08:13 PM
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Intense Micro Knobby is a sweet tire for different types of riding; just not good for the harder trails.

Also, I've been running the WTB Nano Raptor all winter, and it does well for multipurpose riding.
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Old 04-18-10, 08:26 PM
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Schwalbe Marathon (too many to list)
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Old 04-18-10, 08:44 PM
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I've ridden my road bike on some pretty rough gravel roads. (It has 700x23) It's pretty rough, but it can be done. It's more manageable to ride "off road" on my commuter bike with 28s.

I would get some slicks. If it were up to me probably some 1.25 or 1.5 inch tires. As for saddle/bar height, adjust your saddle so it's high enough. As for your bar height set it wherever you want. Higher bars will probably you a more comfortable ride and leverage, but you won't be as aerodynamic, which won't matter much on mountain bikes, unless you're doing some quick riding on the road.
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Old 04-18-10, 09:51 PM
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Tires: Continental Town & Country - it's what the cops use on their bicycles. It's got an inverted tread, which is good on gravel and dirt roads, and in the slush and wet, while primarily designed to be speedy and plush on the pavement. It's got some serious anti-flat tech, broken glass and rocks and other small shrapnel generally won't be an issue. Get the 2.1" tire for a nice ride. Don't forget the fenders! They look cool and keep puddles of parking lot filth from painting a stripe up your back and across your shins. Don't forget the lights! At least one blinky out back, unless you like being creamed by people talking on their cell phones while eating french fries while steering with their knees.
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Old 04-18-10, 09:57 PM
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Front light is equally necessary. It will be difficult for motorists to spot a bicycle with no lighting equipment prior to making a turn, leaving a parking spot, etc.
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Old 04-19-10, 05:41 AM
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Originally Posted by Hamrick View Post
One more thing; I've been looking, but can't find anything about suggestions for the "proper" seat to handlebar height. Any links? Right now, the seat is adjusted to me, but does having the handles higher than the seat affect anything besides weight distribution?
It's largely weight distribution and comfort. I prefer my bars about even with my seat. If my bars are too much higher, then my back is too upright, and I get back pain from bumps. But if my bars are much lower than my seat, then my body is not up to being bent over so much, and I get wrist pain. So, for me, about even works pretty well.

Lower bars generally allow you to put down more power. But get comfortable first. Worry about power second.

Here's an article worth reading:

https://www.rivbike.com/article/bike_...g_a_frame_size

Especially read the section titled "Too-small bikes are not comfortable".
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