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Tire Pressure for a little more comfort ? Other options ?

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Tire Pressure for a little more comfort ? Other options ?

Old 06-14-10, 07:41 AM
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Tire Pressure for a little more comfort ? Other options ?

Hi All,

I am running a 2010 CAAD9 56cm with ROL Race SL wheels with Vredstein Tri Comp tires. My handlebars are FSA alloy Wing Pro Compacts. My seatpost is a Thomson Elite. My seat is a Specialized BG. I am 5'10" @ 180lbs. When I first put on the Vredsteins I was running them at 140psi. I've since back down to 120. I have been reading where some folks run different tires pressures between their front & back tires. When the roads are halfway decent I have no complaints. It's those rough sections of New England pavement when you're in a pack @ 22+ mph where I feel the jarring the most, and then primarily in my hands and shoulders. I admit I've harbored thoughts on how much more comfortable a Synapse Hi-Mod frame might be but that option is several years off at best. I don't race. I just do fast group rides & centuries.

What are some things I can do in the meantime to get me some more comfort without spending a mint.

Thanks !
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Old 06-14-10, 07:49 AM
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100 psi.
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Old 06-14-10, 07:51 AM
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100psi both front & rear ?

Originally Posted by Phantoj View Post
100 psi.
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Old 06-14-10, 07:59 AM
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https://www.michelinbicycletire.com/m...rpressure.view

I sometimes underinflate the front by 5psi for extra rough roads.

Make sure you are not riding with your elbows locked.
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Old 06-14-10, 08:02 AM
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At your weight run 85/95psi with 25c tires and latex tubes for max comfort.
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Old 06-14-10, 08:04 AM
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Thanks for the link....

I ride primarily on the hoods....
You think 5psi really makes a difference ?
I may try 110psi on my next ride and see what that feels like.
I really like to bomb the descents though and I worry about rolling a tires on a sharp sweeper ?
At what point would that become an issue ?

Originally Posted by ericm979 View Post
https://www.michelinbicycletire.com/m...rpressure.view

I sometimes underinflate the front by 5psi for extra rough roads.

Make sure you are not riding with your elbows locked.
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Old 06-14-10, 08:09 AM
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Originally Posted by JoeOxfordCT View Post
100psi both front & rear ?

Yes.

There's a whole lot of mistaken beliefs about tire pressure:

1) The maximum pressure rated on the tire is not the recommended pressure.

2) higher pressures (particularly on rough roads) do not decrease rolling resistence, in fact they increase rolling resistence.

The only reason to run pressure above 100lbs if you need it to avoid pinch flatting. You should be fine at 100lbs at your weight, although, some people are heavier on their wheels than others, so if you do find yourself pinch flatting you can bump it up to 110-115 psi, which would still be much more comfortable than 140.
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Old 06-14-10, 08:11 AM
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Originally Posted by JoeOxfordCT View Post
I really like to bomb the descents though and I worry about rolling a tires on a sharp sweeper ?
At what point would that become an issue ?

I serously doubt you'd roll a clincer tire off the rim (assuming the tire is properly fit to the rim) at 60psi.

Before you get to the point where the tire's coming off, you'll feel it squirming around as you corner, so you want more pressure than that, but 100psi is well above that point.
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Old 06-14-10, 08:17 AM
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Thanks Merlin,

20psi (from my current 120psi) oughta really make a difference....

I will try that. What are your thoughts on carbon handlebars for comfort ?
Not worth the expense ? I am currently running the skinnier gel pads under my tape on my bars. I tried but didn't like the thick gel pads.

Originally Posted by merlinextraligh View Post
I serously doubt you'd roll a clincer tire off the rim (assuming the tire is properly fit to the rim) at 60psi.

Before you get to the point where the tire's coming off, you'll feel it squirming around as you corner, so you want more pressure than that, but 100psi is well above that point.
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Old 06-14-10, 08:18 AM
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You're best bet is to get More comfortable TIRES and or saddle/gloves . The point is to buy more stuff, not find fixes. All jokes aside, I find the tires themselves make the biggest difference in comfort. if Max is 115 you can go down to 100 or so without really feeling too much sloshier, but I can feel when my tires are low even if only by 5-10 psi.
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Old 06-14-10, 08:39 AM
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+1 on what eric said about elbows.

If the front is "shocking", check weight distribution, core strength (too low and not enough support), bar drop (too low = extra pressure on hands), extension (too long = extra pressure), how hard you're riding (easier = more pressure), how often you move your hands around (more than 5 min in one position, could be problematic), gloves, tape thickness.

If you're on a 23c tire you can probably go to 105 psi up front. If you're on a 23c tire with a 23 mm rim, 95 psi.

I have 23mm clincher rims, 23c tires, run 95/105 psi front/rear. I used to weigh 180-200 (last year), this year hovering in the upper 150s. Although I tend to train little during the summer, in the winter I go to warmer climes and regularly do 50-100 mile rides. I had no problems with 23c tire + narrow rim at 105 psi up front, even at 200 lbs.

cdr
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Old 06-14-10, 08:39 AM
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Originally Posted by merlinextraligh View Post
1) The maximum pressure rated on the tire is not the recommended pressure.
Serious enough over-inflation could blow a tire off an older non-hooked-bead rim too. I recently had a 25mm tire inflated to 115 pop off a Fiamme Yellow Label rim. It sounded like a rifle shot. Glad I wasn't staring at it at the time. This isn't likely with newer rims but it underscores the meaning of the term "Maximum Recommended Pressure".

In this case it had been inflated to 120 with an electric pump on the premise that some air would escape when I took the valve off. Then I rode for an hour, then cleaned part of the rim with alcohol, then left it in the 6PM sun which shouldn't have added much heat. 10 minutes later it blew in the spot where I'd been cleaning it. Maybe some alcohol seeped into the bead and acted as a lubricant.

I'm not convinced that it needs that much air anyway. (I weigh 170lbs.) But a buddy who used to race keeps telling me that 50 years of racing practice wouldn't have concluded more pressure is good if it wasn't so.
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Old 06-14-10, 08:41 AM
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I have found that tires with a hight "TPI" (220 or more) ride more comfortably. I would also get gloves that have gel padding.
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Old 06-14-10, 08:47 AM
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120 is way to high. You need to find the right pressure for any given wheel. Typically I am around 95/105 on tubulars. You need to feel the side walls take the shock on normal road bumps, find the sweet spot and keep it there. Do this, pump up to 90psi and go for a short test ride, then adjust accordingly.
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Old 06-14-10, 09:19 AM
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Hi CDR,
Love your vids on YouTube !
I've been running the same drop on my handlebars since I got this bike last winter...about 2 inches or so. This is my first bike with SRAM Rival coming from Shimano. I've loved it for the most part. I always wanted to get the nice flat transition from my tops to the hoods that SRAM brifters offer. I currently have my bars rotated up slightly. However, I know I would feel better if I could rotate them up even more but I can't stand the look and it would make the drops position practically unusable as well. I am thinking I may want to look at some different bars where I could run the brifters tilted up from the tops while not compromising the reach to the levers from the drops....
Here are some pics of the current setup:
https://www.facebook.com/album.php?ai...7&l=fdd751e098
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Old 06-14-10, 09:22 AM
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Originally Posted by JoeOxfordCT View Post
I will try that. What are your thoughts on carbon handlebars for comfort ?
Not worth the expense ?

I've got two bikes with CF bars, the rest with Al. I can't say I notice a major difference in comfort.
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Old 06-14-10, 09:34 AM
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First off I would try 110psi and see how it feels. If you still don't like the ride maybe invest in a pair of quality 25c tires which will enable you to run a lower PSI still with very little trade off in performance. I use Conti GP4000S tires in 25c with 100psi and the ride is superb.
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Old 06-14-10, 10:05 AM
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The goal is to run at the lowest possible pressure without sacrificing speed. I have a compact 1995 Cannodale R600. When fitted with 700x23c tire, I keep the pressure at 70 psi (148 lbs rider). Cruising speed is reduced by only 0.5 mph.

Next step is to spend $80 on a sprung Brooks Flyer saddle. The sprug saddle will significantly absorb vibration to your butt. Proper fore/aft and tilt of the saddle will also cut down the load on the wrist. Always ride with bent elbows to absorb the energy transmitted by the handlebar.
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Old 06-14-10, 10:14 AM
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LOL I'd love to see a sprung saddle on a cad9
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Old 06-14-10, 10:14 AM
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You're running low spoke count wheels on an AL frame. Not exactly a recipe for comfort. You might want to consider running 25mm tires pumped up to @100 psi. I'm the same build as you and the first thing I did with my CAAD was (replace the fillings the fillings that were rattled out of my head) to swap out the wheels for basic Mavic OP's with 25mm Vittorias.
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