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Compass Tire Hype: Warning

Old 08-01-16, 12:41 PM
  #1  
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Compass Tire Hype: Warning

I hate when a product develops a hive-minded hyperbolic praise gushing following. It makes me very suspicious. I start thinking "Label Lovers" and brand loyalists, which make no sense to me whatsoever. Like a $20K Rolex is going to tell me what time it is better than a $100 Seiko will. That kinda cult **** irks me.

Well, Compass tires are swarmed by exactly that. A following of "Praise Fountains" spewing sugary adjectives and analogies about the tire's unearthly performance and ride qualities has developed.

I've read all the user reviews I came across.

"Floats over chip seal like it's on a cloud."

"I had to change cogs on my fixed bike because of the increased speed."

"They eliminated the numbness that I was experiencing in my hands."

And on and on and on and on and on and on.

Whatever man. Puke.

So...

I had some tires on one of my bikes that were just too heavy. My mistake for buying them. Originally they fit the bill. Large volume, gum walls, and 100% slick. But I found myself avoiding riding that bike because of the tires. That was bumming me out. After a while I admitted it to myself, they had to go.

I started shopping for lighter replacements. I couldn't find any 100% slick tires with gum/tan walls in 700c x 35mm. Black wall, yes. Or gum wall with tread, yes. Dammit. More research and shopping. I finally reached the much loathed conclusion that the Compass tire was the closest I could get to what I wanted. It has tread, but it's almost nonexistent. Dread set in. The prices are ridiculous. Stupid prices.

After mulling it over I decided to bite the bullet and buy a pair. I figured if they were half as good as the hype, I'd have a lighter and better rolling tire and enjoy the bike again.

I received them. Yep. Just rubber rings. They mounted easily and fully seated themselves without needing any manual manipulation. Fine. Whatever.

Still feeling like a knucklehead for spending nine mortgage payments on two bike tires I ventured out for a twenty mile ride.

I didn't have to ride very far to realize I had made a big mistake. A BIG one.

I had judged the tires and formed an opinion without riding them.

The hype is true.

I've ridden thirty seven million different tires (yes, 37M ) in my time on bikes and motorcycles and these tires are freaks.

They ride so well it messes with my head. I'd be riding along on perfect pavement for a mile and then come to a place where it transitions to junk pavement and I'd feel no difference. My eyes are receiving data that conflicts with what my hands, butt and feet are experiencing. I started looking for rough patches to ride over so I could "double check" WTF was going on?

Yeah they roll great, but that's to be expected since they have a high TPI count and are light weight. Yeah they handle great, but that's to be expected since they have supple side walls. But it's the vibration elimination that is freakish. And I mean freakish.

There is a park near me with a huge concrete promenade area as part of a Veteran's memorial. The concrete has a decorative pattern stamped in it. The ridges are the exactly perfect depth and distance from one another to induce teeth rattling vibration. You know, like rattle the fillings out of your teeth. I rolled over that stuff, and, nothing. NOTHING. I couldn't feel or hear anything. It was actually very very eerie.

The other thing that is weird is that the PSI sweet spot is huge. When the pressure drops they don't become "slow".

Now I am faced with a huge dilemma. Compass makes a (dead sexy) 26" x 2.3" black wall and my Klunker needs new tires. I'd save 202 grams each by replacing my Ritchey tires. But those cost even more than the 700 x 35s I bought.

But expensive tires on a Klunker? Really?

Am I that stupid?

Probably.

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Old 08-01-16, 12:52 PM
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I've just bought a pair of Schwalbe Marathon Supreme 26"x2" today for an old Bridgestone mountain bike that I've customised with drop bars ....

I really wanted Compass Rat Trap Pass .... after reading your post, I'm sad now and should have bought the compass tyres

Oh well, next time ... when the Schwalbe's need replacing, I will get the Rat Trap Pass .... only thing that concerns me is the puncture resistance (I commute 40km per day, but it's only on Asphalt/tar roads with a few potholes here and there)... I hat punctures and loose money if I'm late for work
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Old 08-01-16, 01:03 PM
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Originally Posted by dim View Post
I've just bought a pair of Schwalbe Marathon Supreme 26"x2" today for an old Bridgestone mountain bike that I've customised with drop bars ....

I really wanted Compass Rat Trap Pass .... after reading your post, I'm sad now and should have bought the compass tyres

Oh well, next time ... when the Schwalbe's need replacing, I will get the Rat Trap Pass .... only thing that concerns me is the puncture resistance (I commute 40km per day, but it's only on Asphalt/tar roads with a few potholes here and there)... I hat punctures and loose money if I'm late for work

The price is about the same. I didn't know that. The Rat Traps are WAY lighter, but I totally understand your puncture concern. The Compass tires do feel mighty delicate in your hands.

Maybe check out the Schwalbe Kojak as a compromise. It's about halfway between the two and far less money.
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Old 08-01-16, 01:58 PM
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The smallest they offer is 700x26? Pass from size alone.
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Old 08-01-16, 02:00 PM
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Originally Posted by SquidPuppet View Post
The price is about the same. I didn't know that. The Rat Traps are WAY lighter, but I totally understand your puncture concern. The Compass tires do feel mighty delicate in your hands.

Maybe check out the Schwalbe Kojak as a compromise. It's about halfway between the two and far less money.
I got a pair of Schwalbe Marathon Supreme 26"x 2" folding tyres for £39.90 (inclusive of shipping cost).... thats for both:

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/3616435064...%3AMEBIDX%3AIT
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Old 08-01-16, 02:09 PM
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Originally Posted by dim View Post
I got a pair of Schwalbe Marathon Supreme 26"x 2" folding tyres for £39.90 (inclusive of shipping cost).... thats for both:

Schwalbe Marathon Supreme HD Speed Guard Slick FOLDING Hybrid Tyre 26" x 2.00" | eBay
They are listed on Schwalbe's North America site for $85.00.

$75.00 each at Amazon. Weird.

$109.00 on ebay ********** http://www.ebay.com/itm/Schwalbe-Bic...-/221933017050

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Old 08-01-16, 02:21 PM
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Don't let the C&V guys catch wind of this....

I have a set of grand bois tires that I got on sale, they're not that bad although the price is on the heftier size for the amount of tech in them.
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Old 08-01-16, 02:25 PM
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@SquidPuppet, I love your writing.

Which size and model did you get?
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Old 08-01-16, 02:32 PM
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Originally Posted by Leukybear View Post
Don't let the C&V guys catch wind of this....
After reading a lot of reviews I went to the C&V forum to investigate further. It was a couple guys there that actually know Jan Heine and vouched for the design, manufacturing process, and tread compound that pushed me over the edge to try them. There was some debate about them being re-branded Pasella carcasses, which was debunked when a knowledgeable member stepped in.

Lot's of those guys already ride them and claim they are even good on gravel. That's something I won't be testing with that tiny tread.
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Old 08-01-16, 02:42 PM
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Originally Posted by noglider View Post
@SquidPuppet, I love your writing.

Which size and model did you get?
Thanks.

I got the Jon Bon Pass 700 x 35 in the "Extra Light" flavor. I've read that the "Standard" version is noticeably less comfortable. 52 gram difference between the two, FWIW. $20.00 difference too.

I want these...

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Old 08-01-16, 02:43 PM
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Originally Posted by SquidPuppet View Post
After reading a lot of reviews I went to the C&V forum to investigate further. It was a couple guys there that actually know Jan Heine and vouched for the design, manufacturing process, and tread compound that pushed me over the edge to try them. There was some debate about them being re-branded Pasella carcasses, which was debunked when a knowledgeable member stepped in.

Lot's of those guys already ride them and claim they are even good on gravel. That's something I won't be testing with that tiny tread.
Somewhere in the another forum, there is a similar thread about wabis
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Old 08-01-16, 02:45 PM
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some of our now distant SSFG members, and transient members (@yummygooey) know the BQ guys and ride compass jawns. lots of offroad stuff goes on with their crew

i want the rat traps but they wont fit on hypnotoad and that makes me sad. if i end up getting a cross bike this winter ill be getting the fattest compass tires for the road wheelset
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Old 08-01-16, 02:50 PM
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Originally Posted by SquidPuppet View Post
Lot's of those guys already ride them and claim they are even good on gravel. That's something I won't be testing with that tiny tread.
I'd be more concerned about the sidewalls than the treads. The Pasela sidewall is already vulnerable, so I'm sure your tires are much more so.
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Old 08-01-16, 03:00 PM
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Originally Posted by Leukybear View Post
Somewhere in the another forum, there is a similar thread about wabis
I don't follow you. You mean about being good on gravel?

Originally Posted by Mumonkan View Post
some of our now distant SSFG members, and transient members (@yummygooey) know the BQ guys and ride compass jawns. lots of offroad stuff goes on with their crew

i want the rat traps but they wont fit on hypnotoad and that makes me sad. if i end up getting a cross bike this winter ill be getting the fattest compass tires for the road wheelset
Are they too big for the frame or the rim?

Something I should acknowledge is that I don't know how well they perform under extreme front wheel braking, since I have no way to test that currently.
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Old 08-01-16, 03:04 PM
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Originally Posted by noglider View Post
I'd be more concerned about the sidewalls than the treads. The Pasela sidewall is already vulnerable, so I'm sure your tires are much more so.

Yes indeed, the sidewalls are like anorexic tissue paper.

I can say truthfully though, in 50+ years I've never had a sidewall puncture. I've never really understood how people achieve those on the road.
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Old 08-01-16, 03:07 PM
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Originally Posted by SquidPuppet View Post
I don't follow you. You mean about being good on gravel?
Not believing the hype that's often found here for their completes and wheelsets.

Let's be honest, they're not exactly priced in the same range as our beloved #kilott
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Old 08-01-16, 03:24 PM
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Originally Posted by SquidPuppet View Post
Are they too big for the frame or the rim?
too big for the frame, i had to do some modifications to get 2.15s to fit and i hear the rat traps fit a bit big

doesn't bode well for 2.3 tires
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Old 08-01-16, 07:52 PM
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Originally Posted by jacobsever View Post
The smallest they offer is 700x26? Pass from size alone.
There used to be a 700x23 offering from Grand Bois (another premium tire brand made by Panaracer), but I'm not seeing them now that I look again. Weird, must not have been a big seller.
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Old 08-01-16, 08:18 PM
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Originally Posted by ThermionicScott View Post
There used to be a 700x23 offering from Grand Bois (another premium tire brand made by Panaracer), but I'm not seeing them now that I look again. Weird, must not have been a big seller.
The market is full of good 23mm tires.
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Old 08-01-16, 09:21 PM
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Originally Posted by SquidPuppet View Post
Yes indeed, the sidewalls are like anorexic tissue paper.

I can say truthfully though, in 50+ years I've never had a sidewall puncture. I've never really understood how people achieve those on the road.
I pulled over to take a leak and my tire rubbed the curb for a second as i came to a stop. POP! I've been curious about Compass tires for a long time now. I was tempted to buy a pair in preparation for both of my randonneur rides but I never went through with it. It's hard to put that kind of cash out when I have access to wholesale prices for Paselas.

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Old 08-02-16, 12:06 AM
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Originally Posted by jacobsever View Post
The smallest they offer is 700x26? Pass from size alone.
2nd. Was considering trying these after reading OP's story.
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Old 08-02-16, 05:30 AM
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I really enjoyed reading this!
I feel like spending alot of money on some new tires now. Jeez, thanks buddy...
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Old 08-02-16, 06:44 AM
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I'm a believer of tire hype now. Having gone to 320tpi on two bikes this past week, I'm not sure I'll ever be able to go back to anything else..
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Old 08-02-16, 07:35 AM
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Originally Posted by hairnet View Post
I pulled over to take a leak and my tire rubbed the curb for a second as i came to a stop. POP! .

What did it? Something poking out of the curb?
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Old 08-02-16, 07:36 AM
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Originally Posted by Mumonkan View Post
too big for the frame, i had to do some modifications to get 2.15s to fit and i hear the rat traps fit a bit big

doesn't bode well for 2.3 tires
Ah. I see.
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