Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Road Cycling
Reload this Page >

Best Tires for your Road Bike

Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

Best Tires for your Road Bike

Old 01-18-18, 07:05 AM
  #26  
jpescatore
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2017
Location: Ashton, MD USA
Posts: 427

Bikes: Trek Domane SL6 Disc, Trek 520

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 129 Post(s)
Liked 7 Times in 7 Posts
Originally Posted by caloso View Post
Best for what? Suppleness? Rolling resistance? Flat resistance? Durability?
Tubular? Tubeless? Clincher?
I echo the question - for me, 32mm tubular with good wet road performance, err on the side of lower rolling resistance vs. higher durability were my criteria for replacing the stock Bontrager R2s on my Trek Domane.

The 32mm part eliminated the Grand Prix 4000s. I use Schwalbe on my touring bike but those are great on durability and wet road, not so great on rolling resistance. Last year I put on Bontrager AW3s and so far so good - but only about 750 miles on them and only one wet road ride before winter hit.
jpescatore is offline  
Old 01-18-18, 12:44 PM
  #27  
mister
Senior Member
 
mister's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Santa Rosa, CA
Posts: 769

Bikes: Stinner Gibraltar

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 17 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I may be the lone voice of descent, but I noticed no difference between Continental Gatorskins and similar tires; it seems like I get flats regardless of what tires I use. I personally like the Vittoria Zaffiro III. They’re inexpensive, and do the job well.
mister is offline  
Old 01-18-18, 12:52 PM
  #28  
Dave Mayer
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 1,799
Mentioned: 14 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 591 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 8 Times in 7 Posts
Originally Posted by phtomita View Post
.
If $$ is not the problem, what are the best tires on the market?
Looking for a 700x25c.
$$$ no problem? If you are a elite level athlete riding for money, then you'll be on tubulars. There is no performance overlap between tubular wheels and clincher wheels, no matter how much money you pay for the clincher setup.

BTW: tubeless is just another variant of a clincher, with most of the associated disadvantages of this rim type.

So if you're riding clinchers, then don't overthink this or pay too much money. Gatorskins are fine.
Dave Mayer is offline  
Old 01-18-18, 02:22 PM
  #29  
duane041
Junk Collector
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Chicago IL
Posts: 974

Bikes: 1987 Schwinn Circuit, 2012 Colnago M10, 1990 Schwinn CrissCross

Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 34 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I happen to really like my Vredestein Fortezza Senso All-Weather tires. Great on dry pavement, really great in the rain. And they ride nicely, too.
duane041 is offline  
Old 01-18-18, 07:19 PM
  #30  
Psimet2001 
I eat carbide.
 
Psimet2001's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Elgin, IL
Posts: 20,593

Bikes: Lots. Van Dessel and Squid Dealer

Mentioned: 20 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 599 Post(s)
Liked 21 Times in 17 Posts
Originally Posted by Dave Mayer View Post
$$$ no problem? If you are a elite level athlete riding for money, then you'll be on tubulars. There is no performance overlap between tubular wheels and clincher wheels, no matter how much money you pay for the clincher setup.

BTW: tubeless is just another variant of a clincher, with most of the associated disadvantages of this rim type.

So if you're riding clinchers, then don't overthink this or pay too much money. Gatorskins are fine.
Actually this has shifted in the last 10 years. Those of us who love tubulars can agree that there really is no substitute but almost every single pro that I work with on road has converted to clincher. There is little to no loss of performance and the ease for them while traveling can not be beat.

In fact I can't find a team to sponsor with tubulars anymore. I have some rims ready and sitting but the demand just dropped to next to nothing on the road in the last few years. Like a light switch. *poof*
__________________
PSIMET Wheels, PSIMET Racing, PSIMET Neutral Race Support, and 11 Jackson Coffee
Podcast - YouTube Channel
Video about PSIMET Wheels

Psimet2001 is offline  
Old 01-18-18, 07:39 PM
  #31  
Racing Dan
Senior Member
 
Racing Dan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Posts: 1,296
Mentioned: 8 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 739 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 3 Posts
Originally Posted by phtomita View Post
Still new to road biking - 1 yr+ - and was looking for some thread about tires for road bikes but can't find any dedicated thread.

If $$ is not the problem, what are the best tires on the market?
Looking for a 700x25c.
There is no ONE best tyre. They are all a compromise between durability, grip, puncture resistance, rolling resistance, weight, ect ... Get one that best matches the properties you value.
Racing Dan is offline  
Old 01-18-18, 09:35 PM
  #32  
scott967
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Oahu, HI
Posts: 1,121

Bikes: 89 Paramount OS 84 Fuji Touring Series III New! 2013 Focus Izalco Ergoride

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 194 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Originally Posted by Psimet2001 View Post
Actually this has shifted in the last 10 years. Those of us who love tubulars can agree that there really is no substitute but almost every single pro that I work with on road has converted to clincher. There is little to no loss of performance and the ease for them while traveling can not be beat.

In fact I can't find a team to sponsor with tubulars anymore. I have some rims ready and sitting but the demand just dropped to next to nothing on the road in the last few years. Like a light switch. *poof*
I'm not elite, just an old and slow guy, and don't need to spend $$$ but I've been on Yoeleo carbon T38s and Veloflex Arenberg tubs for the last year and see no reason to go back to clinchers. Still have some Fulcrums with Michelin Pro4 Endurance v2 on them which have never flatted as backup. So I don't subscribe to the whole "tubulars are too mysterious/trouble for "normal" riders" view.

scott s.
.
scott967 is offline  
Old 01-19-18, 02:18 PM
  #33  
phtomita
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2018
Location: Redmond, WA
Posts: 473

Bikes: '86 Nishiki Tri-A, '84 Centurion PT15, '87 Centurion IM Master

Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 146 Post(s)
Liked 11 Times in 10 Posts
Not an elite rider - just trying to enjoy riding and taking some centuries and double centuries.
Comfort and lower rolling resistance comes first. Then, flat resistance and durability.
Riding on road with some level of debris, but not too bad and some potholes along the road sometimes.

Just ordered a pair of Conti GP4000 SII - looking forward for the first ride
phtomita is offline  
Old 01-19-18, 02:50 PM
  #34  
noodle soup
Senior Member
 
noodle soup's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Posts: 6,165
Mentioned: 14 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2889 Post(s)
Liked 92 Times in 70 Posts
Originally Posted by San Pedro View Post
Michelin tires are nice as well. I loved the ride of the Pro4 Endurance v2 tires.
This!

/thread
noodle soup is online now  
Old 01-19-18, 03:48 PM
  #35  
Psimet2001 
I eat carbide.
 
Psimet2001's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Elgin, IL
Posts: 20,593

Bikes: Lots. Van Dessel and Squid Dealer

Mentioned: 20 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 599 Post(s)
Liked 21 Times in 17 Posts
Originally Posted by scott967 View Post
I'm not elite, just an old and slow guy, and don't need to spend $$$ but I've been on Yoeleo carbon T38s and Veloflex Arenberg tubs for the last year and see no reason to go back to clinchers. Still have some Fulcrums with Michelin Pro4 Endurance v2 on them which have never flatted as backup. So I don't subscribe to the whole "tubulars are too mysterious/trouble for "normal" riders" view.

scott s.
.
I get it but when you're racing 60+ races a year and living out of a suitcase for the vast majority of that you don't have consistent tools access and/or ability and time to get it done quickly and correctly when sometimes you only have a few hours between races. Smuggling glue into your suitcase for travel, etc. Just not worth it for the vast majority of teams.

Whats more - there is less and less of a demand for tubulars at the wheel company level. Some other companies just don't even offer them anymore. Hard to race tubulars if your wheel sponsor doesn't even make them anymore.

As for the "mysterious/trouble" angle: we can say what we want. Not hard, very hard, art/craft, whatever. Fact is I charge a lot of money to glue tires and there is no shortage of people willing to drive a long way just to pay me to do it. Capable, intelligent people what would never dream of having anyone else work on any other part of their bike.

So we can debate the "merits" of each type of tire until we are blue in the face - people speak with their wallet and in that regard - for road - the tubular is dying again. it has died and come back in the past so... meh.
__________________
PSIMET Wheels, PSIMET Racing, PSIMET Neutral Race Support, and 11 Jackson Coffee
Podcast - YouTube Channel
Video about PSIMET Wheels

Psimet2001 is offline  
Old 01-20-18, 09:44 PM
  #36  
Da Reef
Senior Member
 
Da Reef's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Location: Atlanta
Posts: 349

Bikes: Tarmac, Allez Sprint, Nashbar beater

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 145 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Like others have said, Specialized cotton.
Da Reef is offline  
Old 01-20-18, 09:52 PM
  #37  
steinercat
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2017
Posts: 42
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by atwl77 View Post
Also consider Panaracer GravelKings. Despite the "gravel" tag, they're excellent on both smooth as well as pothole-ridden tarmac.
They do ride great, but puncture easy (3x in 1 year). At least in my case. Riding the same exact routes with Conti GP4 Season and no punctures for same amount of miles.
steinercat is offline  
Old 01-21-18, 11:37 AM
  #38  
McBTC
Senior Member
 
McBTC's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2015
Posts: 3,762

Bikes: 2015 22 Speed

Mentioned: 14 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1493 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Originally Posted by phtomita View Post
Still new to road biking - 1 yr+ - and was looking for some thread about tires for road bikes but can't find any dedicated thread.

If $$ is not the problem, what are the best tires on the market?
Looking for a 700x25c.
I have to look for 25s... or smaller-- the next size up, 28s, won't fit on my bike. If you don't have that limitation, does that mean you're only looking at 25s because 28s are undesirable?
McBTC is offline  
Old 01-21-18, 07:04 PM
  #39  
Shuffleman
Senior Member
 
Shuffleman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Florida
Posts: 1,298

Bikes: Colnago CLX,GT Karakoram,Giant Revel, Kona Honk_ Tonk

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 148 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by mister View Post
I may be the lone voice of descent, but I noticed no difference between Continental Gatorskins and similar tires; it seems like I get flats regardless of what tires I use. I personally like the Vittoria Zaffiro III. They’re inexpensive, and do the job well.
I do think some exaggerate the difference between tires but at the same time, there is a difference. It just depends on how much you are willing to pay for that difference. Is the difference 10%, 15% or more? Who knows. Personally, I think it is nice to have a better tire but it's not like we are talking about the difference between a rough ride and silky smooth ride. If you can afford the Corsa, go for it. If you can't, the Zaffiros are still fine.
Shuffleman is offline  
Old 01-22-18, 02:18 AM
  #40  
canklecat
Me duelen las nalgas
 
canklecat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Texas
Posts: 9,053

Bikes: Centurion Ironman, Trek 5900, Univega Via Carisma, Globe Carmel

Mentioned: 157 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2762 Post(s)
Liked 134 Times in 109 Posts
Originally Posted by mister View Post
I may be the lone voice of descent, but I noticed no difference between Continental Gatorskins and similar tires; it seems like I get flats regardless of what tires I use. I personally like the Vittoria Zaffiro III. They’re inexpensive, and do the job well.
Originally Posted by Shuffleman View Post
I do think some exaggerate the difference between tires but at the same time, there is a difference. It just depends on how much you are willing to pay for that difference. Is the difference 10%, 15% or more? Who knows. Personally, I think it is nice to have a better tire but it's not like we are talking about the difference between a rough ride and silky smooth ride. If you can afford the Corsa, go for it. If you can't, the Zaffiros are still fine.
Yup. My used road bike came with a new set of Zaffiros. Rode 'em 500 miles before switching to Schwalbe One V-Guards. The Zaffiros weren't awful. A bit harsh at full pressure on chipseal, but otherwise okay. They seemed pretty tough. Got a couple of nicks from road debris but no flats. I still have 'em in the closet. Probably good for another 1,000 miles if I needed them.

When I first rode those Zaffiros I was impressed with my Strava times. The tires felt a bit sluggish at 90-100 psi, just as the reviews said, but my times seemed good, averaging around 16 mph without really trying.

Then I reviewed Strava more carefully via the browser and realized I was experiencing a lot of GPS sync errors on those rides. There were skips of hundreds of yards or more between syncs. So the speed estimates were way off. My actual average speed was closer to 14 mph. So they were about as sluggish at lower pressure as the reviews say. But no worse than riding my hybrid with 700x40 tires.

For around $12 a tire, sometimes even cheaper, the Zaffiros ain't bad. But the Schwalbe One V-Guards are much nicer. Too bad they're discontinued.
canklecat is online now  
Old 01-22-18, 05:55 AM
  #41  
kbarch
Senior Member
 
kbarch's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 4,292
Mentioned: 21 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1095 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by phtomita View Post
Not an elite rider - just trying to enjoy riding and taking some centuries and double centuries.
Comfort and lower rolling resistance comes first. Then, flat resistance and durability.
Riding on road with some level of debris, but not too bad and some potholes along the road sometimes.

Just ordered a pair of Conti GP4000 SII - looking forward for the first ride
Originally Posted by datlas View Post
General consensus is Continental Grand Prix 4000s tires are best, but there are plenty of other options out there.
I wouldn't call it a consensus on what's the best tire, but those Contis are probably the most popular and widely available tires for enthusiasts. There's something to be said for that, even if they aren't the absolute best. One can be very happy with very good tires, and unless one is super sensitive and in love with tires, searching for the "best" is just a headache. Personally, I'm sold on Vittoria Corsa.
kbarch is offline  
Old 01-22-18, 12:22 PM
  #42  
mercator
In the wind
 
mercator's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Calgary AB
Posts: 1,194

Bikes: Giant TCR Advanced Team, Lemond Buenos Aires, Giant TCX, Miyata 1000LT

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 122 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Originally Posted by kbarch View Post
I wouldn't call it a consensus on what's the best tire, but those Contis are probably the most popular and widely available tires for enthusiasts. There's something to be said for that, even if they aren't the absolute best. One can be very happy with very good tires, and unless one is super sensitive and in love with tires, searching for the "best" is just a headache. Personally, I'm sold on Vittoria Corsa.
+1 There is no best.

I really like the feel of the Vittoria Corsa (and that's why I recommended them) but get better mileage with the GP4000. On the other hand, I find the Pro4-SC may roll slightly slower but they are more flat resistant and significantly cheaper.
mercator is offline  
Old 01-22-18, 12:44 PM
  #43  
noodle soup
Senior Member
 
noodle soup's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Posts: 6,165
Mentioned: 14 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2889 Post(s)
Liked 92 Times in 70 Posts
Originally Posted by mercator View Post
+1 There is no best.

I really like the feel of the Vittoria Corsa (and that's why I recommended them) but get better mileage with the GP4000. On the other hand, I find the Pro4-SC may roll slightly slower but they are more flat resistant and significantly cheaper.
Lab tests prove this to be true, but I doubt anyone would notice the difference on the road.

BTW, the PRO4sc replacement tire(Power Competition) is faster rolling than the GP4000sII in lab tests.
noodle soup is online now  
Old 01-22-18, 01:25 PM
  #44  
kansukee 
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 368
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 92 Post(s)
Liked 18 Times in 10 Posts
You can't go wrong with Veloflex. It's all I ride, in tubulars.
kansukee is offline  
Old 01-22-18, 08:47 PM
  #45  
kbarch
Senior Member
 
kbarch's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 4,292
Mentioned: 21 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1095 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by kansukee View Post
You can't go wrong with Veloflex. It's all I ride, in tubulars.
I was expecting to mount Arenbergs on the wheels I just bought, but part of the deal was some new tires, in particular some Vittoria Paves. I figure they'll be OK for the time being.
kbarch is offline  
Old 01-23-18, 10:04 AM
  #46  
nymtber
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: NY state
Posts: 1,311

Bikes: See Signature...

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Vittoria Rubino Pro for me. I had one flat this year, not sure what it was as there was no evidence left behind. Very grippy tires, otherwise good flat resistance, affordable, light for the price, and the ride is supple given the flat resistance.

I don't race and the roads I ride are not too bad. I was too lazy to change tires for riding rollers this winter, so I'll be buying new tires (or a new bike?) by spring...
nymtber is offline  
Old 01-23-18, 10:29 AM
  #47  
noodle soup
Senior Member
 
noodle soup's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Posts: 6,165
Mentioned: 14 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2889 Post(s)
Liked 92 Times in 70 Posts
looking for a sweet deal on a very good tire? Try these https://planetcyclery.com/components...endurance-tire. Same specs as the Michelin PRO4 Endurance V2(now discontinued). I have about 2k miles on this pair, and can't tell any difference between them.
noodle soup is online now  
Old 01-23-18, 10:33 AM
  #48  
nayr497
Senior Member
 
nayr497's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Nilbog
Posts: 1,673

Bikes: How'd I get this many?

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 75 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I do love me some nice tires! Here is what I ride:

Tommasini Diamante: Veloflex Masters 700x25 (this tend to be undersized for stated width)
Casati Laser: Vittoria Corsas 700x25 (largest I can fit under the fork crown)
LOOK 566: Vittoria Corsas 700x28

All three are paired with Vittoria latex tubes. Used to be a Vredestein fan, but had an odd and long bout of punctures and failures. Zero issues with the Vittoria tubes.

If you are willing to put up with the price and the extra attention needed to install/use latex tubes, I find the ride quality to be superb. Continental 4000s are excellent tires, just not the nicest ride quality.
nayr497 is offline  
Old 01-23-18, 01:48 PM
  #49  
caloso
Packfodding 3
 
caloso's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Sacramento, California, USA
Posts: 38,020

Bikes: Ridley Excalibur, Gazelle Champion Mondial, On-One Pompino, Specialized Rock Hopper

Mentioned: 57 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1811 Post(s)
Liked 129 Times in 78 Posts
Originally Posted by noodle soup View Post
looking for a sweet deal on a very good tire? Try these https://planetcyclery.com/components...endurance-tire. Same specs as the Michelin PRO4 Endurance V2(now discontinued). I have about 2k miles on this pair, and can't tell any difference between them.
Good to know. Thanks.
caloso is offline  
Old 01-23-18, 01:56 PM
  #50  
noodle soup
Senior Member
 
noodle soup's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Posts: 6,165
Mentioned: 14 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2889 Post(s)
Liked 92 Times in 70 Posts
Originally Posted by caloso View Post
Good to know. Thanks.
BTW, Planet Cyclery is selling them for about $5 less than dealer cost at QBP. I doubt you'll find them cheaper anywhere.
noodle soup is online now  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.