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The Unbelievable Endurance of Schwalbe Marathon Plus Tiress

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The Unbelievable Endurance of Schwalbe Marathon Plus Tiress

Old 03-06-24, 07:25 AM
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The Unbelievable Endurance of Schwalbe Marathon Plus Tires

I just reached 25,000 km on one of these tires, all of it rear wheel loaded touring use. The puncture protection belt is peeking through, but only in sections and not yet along the entire circumference. I'm guessing it will last till 30,000 km.

These tires are heavy as hell, so you'd better make sure you don't mind because once you buy it you're going to be riding it for the rest of your life.

And they're not immune to punctures. I've had a handful of flats on this tire, all from metal wires.

How long has your Schwalbe Marathon tire lasted?
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Old 03-06-24, 07:34 AM
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Originally Posted by Yan
How long has your Schwalbe Marathon tire lasted?
I am heavier and haven't gotten over 10,000km on a Marathon Plus tire but typically get close. However, agree they last longer than other tires that I have used. Photo below of an old tire I had worn until the blue was showing, the new replacement tire and the Amazon delivery box that I had ordered the new tire to arrive in Liberal KS for me to pick up...
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Old 03-06-24, 07:47 AM
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Mine only had just over 10,000 K on them when I sold them with the bike they were on. They still looked good, and had only had a couple of flats. But frankly, I was glad to see them go! Your comment, "You'd better like them..." is spot on.
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Old 03-06-24, 08:10 AM
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My pair is nowhere near that mileage, but have gone over some really rough terrain. First couple hundred meters on my touring bike always feel like I am riding a tank, like I am on a tracked vehicle - it's a really rough ride. But they are tough and strong. I did manage to get five punctures in less than two weeks (and then ripped the tire itself), but that was once, it's an outlier. I think I have one puncture per one thousand kilometers on average, which is not bad considering the terrain I often ride fully loaded.

Edit. Forgot to mention - my tires are Marathon Plus Tour. Marathon Plus are not as rough.

Last edited by cyclomath; 03-06-24 at 10:57 AM.
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Old 03-06-24, 08:56 AM
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I think the unbelievable endurance isn't the tires, it's the people who ride those tires for 10,000, 20,000, 25,000 km.

Back on topic, I think I got about 6,000 miles (or 10,000 km) out of a pair. I was so happy to see the blue belt showing through I ran into the house to get a replacement tire.
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Old 03-06-24, 09:26 AM
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Originally Posted by Yan
I just reached 25,000 km on one of these tires, all of it rear wheel loaded touring use. The puncture protection belt is peeking through, but only in sections and not yet along the entire circumference. I'm guessing it will last till 30,000 km.

These tires are heavy as hell, so you'd better make sure you don't mind because once you buy it you're going to be riding it for the rest of your life.

And they're not immune to punctures. I've had a handful of flats on this tire, all from metal wires.

How long has your Schwalbe Marathon tire lasted?

That's of course great! But no I will never ride heavy feeling concrete behaving tires
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Old 03-06-24, 09:30 AM
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Originally Posted by cyclomath
My pair is nowhere near that mileage, but have gone over some really rough terrain. First couple hundred meters on my touring bike always feel like I am riding a tank, like I am on a tracked vehicle - it's a really rough ride. But they are tough and strong. I did manage to get five punctures in less than two weeks (and then ripped the tire itself), but that was once, it's an outlier. I think I have one puncture per one thousand kilometers on average, which is not bad considering the terrain I often ride fully loaded.
right, riding these tires make a bike feel like a (lame) tank. )
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Old 03-06-24, 10:05 AM
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I had a front one close to that, then a stapler cartridge finished it off on tour. I just started using a not plus Marathon 8 years old. 2.000 miles and still looks new. LOL. I would change yours ASAP.
It's damn -29C here now.
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Old 03-06-24, 10:28 AM
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Mine had a few hundred miles on them when I pulled them off for something lighter and more importantly with a comparitively supple sidewall. I sold them to someone who would appreciate them.
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Old 03-06-24, 01:10 PM
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I have these on most of my bikes, great tyres and the best I have had is 8,000 miles or nearly 13,000 km down to about 1mm of tread, that included a lot of loaded and off road touring and swapping front and rear occasionally so they wore out together.
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Old 03-06-24, 01:43 PM
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I rode SMPís for a two month tour in SoCal deserts, due to goat-head and other thorns.
Yes, the puncture protection is great, but I found they ride like tractor tires. Was happy to get my Gatorskins and Gator Hardshells back on - Tires that a lot of people donít like because of the harsh ride.
Miles do really vary ✌️

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Old 03-06-24, 05:36 PM
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I ordered a set of 2.125 wide Schwalbe pickup tires for my Pangea Rohloff. Cyclingabout has put them on his Koga and says they are six ply over the tread and five ply on the side wall.
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Old 03-07-24, 07:35 AM
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I haven't had great luck the last few times I used these tires. I had issue with the wire along the bead poking out and puncturing my inner tubes. all in all I had two tours where they annoyed the hell out of me with mysterious punctures...I have since moved on. However I have a bike in the Czech Republic that I will use this coming September to complete the Iron Curtain Trail section I wasn't able to complete 8 years ago and the bike still has the tires on so ... maybe ... :-) I will use them
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Old 03-07-24, 09:42 AM
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Originally Posted by GamblerGORD53
I had a front one close to that, then a stapler cartridge finished it off on tour. I just started using a not plus Marathon 8 years old. 2.000 miles and still looks new. LOL. I would change yours ASAP.
It's damn -29C here now.
​​​​​​I'm in Thailand and it's freaking 34C. We are both dying.
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Old 03-07-24, 09:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Yan
I just reached 25,000 km on one of these tires, all of it rear wheel loaded touring use. The puncture protection belt is peeking through, but only in sections and not yet along the entire circumference. I'm guessing it will last till 30,000 km.

These tires are heavy as hell, so you'd better make sure you don't mind because once you buy it you're going to be riding it for the rest of your life.

And they're not immune to punctures. I've had a handful of flats on this tire, all from metal wires.

How long has your Schwalbe Marathon tire lasted?
Let me get this straight, the puncture protection belt is showing and you want to ride it another 5,000k (3,000 miles)? ARE YOU INSANE? LOL!!

You need to buy another tire, either stay with the same tire you have if you like that tire, or get a lighter weight Schwalbe Almotion tire. I only have about 2,000 miles on mine but I've had no flats after running over miles of glass and who knows what else, and there are no cuts on them, the tires still look new. Supposedly the Almotion tire is supposed to last 8,000 to 12,000 miles loaded riding from reports from other riders. I decided on the going with the lighter weight tire after having a pair of Marathon Greenguards that were harsh riding, and felt sluggish, the Almotion tires have the least amount of rolling resistance of any touring tire, and it's noticeable even under load compared to the Greenguards. The Almotion has two different flat protection belt options, V-Guard and RaceGuard, the RaceGuard is the toughest one against flats. However, mine are the older EVO TLE version that used what is now called the V-Guard, so I have the lighter version and still never got a flat or even a cut so far.

I did cheat with those Almotion. The RaceGuard weighs about 150 grams more than the V-Guard, so I wanted to make sure these tires wouldn't go flat while doing a loaded tour, so I installed a pair of Clear Motion Rhinodillos flat liners that weigh 130 grams which brought me to as much weight as the RaceGuard, but the RhinoDillo is actually better at flat protection than what the RaceGuard would have been, and the Rhinos are far better than Mr Tuffy plus they're lighter in weight. I tested an old Mr Tuffy that I had and the Rhinos with a tack, and the tack penetrated the Mr Tuffy easily, but it would not penetrate Rhino; plus with a pair of scissors I could cut the Tuffy like cutting butter, while trying to cut the Rhino hurt my hand.

Now if you want the best touring tire, though it will weigh more than what you have now, the Marathon Tour Plus is a step up.
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Old 03-08-24, 12:50 AM
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Originally Posted by rekmeyata
Let me get this straight, the puncture protection belt is showing and you want to ride it another 5,000k (3,000 miles)? ARE YOU INSANE? LOL!!
Yeah, it does sound crazy, but 5,000 is only 17% of 30,000, so from a percentage perspective it's not really that much more. I want to get it to the same as in that other guy's photo, where the belt is showing continuously all around.

It's March 8 today. At my current pace I'm going to blow through that 5,000km by late April. Blink of an eye really.

I'm never buying one of these tire again. My tour will end this fall. If I buy one of these tires now I really would be riding it for the rest of my life.

Last edited by Yan; 03-08-24 at 12:54 AM.
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Old 03-08-24, 02:32 AM
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I haven't ridden Schwalbes yet but heard good things about them, such as Big Apples in 20". On this particular model, my guess is the steering weight may not feel as heavy on 20" rims (what I ride), it may actually add some stability, but the ride might be worse due to the smaller wheels.
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Old 03-08-24, 09:10 AM
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Reading with interest.

I'll be looking for a 26x2" tire, riding over a mixture of tarmac/gravel/dirt (no technical rock surfaces). Currently on Almotions (no longer available in 26") after having been on Supremes (no longer available in 26"). Marathon + is just too much for me

Reconsidering width (perhaps 1.5" -- easier to remove the wheel; probably just as comfortable on gravel?).

What are the leading options?
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Old 03-08-24, 09:53 AM
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Originally Posted by str
That's of course great! But no I will never ride heavy feeling concrete behaving tires
Amen. I'll never know as I too will never ride a tire that feels like...beef jerky. Life is too short. Of course I'll never be touring in SE Asia, Central/South America.....
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Old 03-08-24, 11:26 AM
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25,000KM? Pfft, thats nothing.
My concrete wheels will last at least 50,000KM and STILL roll faster and more comfortably than Marathon Plus tires. Come back and brag when your frozen hose tires reach 50,000KM!
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Old 03-08-24, 12:14 PM
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My riding environment changed so I swapped the tires on my Cannondale Quick 1 - removed the indistructable Marathon GT Tours for Marathon Racers. The GT Tour would be my choice for a long trip and a couple of spare tubes. The Racers are much lighter, more forgiving, and lively in response which is great in present riding environment.
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Old 03-09-24, 02:14 AM
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Originally Posted by gauvins
Reading with interest.

I'll be looking for a 26x2" tire, riding over a mixture of tarmac/gravel/dirt (no technical rock surfaces). Currently on Almotions (no longer available in 26") after having been on Supremes (no longer available in 26"). Marathon + is just too much for me

Reconsidering width (perhaps 1.5" -- easier to remove the wheel; probably just as comfortable on gravel?).

What are the leading options?
You don't need to pull off the wheels often. Go for whatever performs best for you.

My folding bike, stock were 1.5", now have 1.75", even with the v-brakes unclipped, I can't pull the front wheel off without deflating the tire, the cartridge brake pads with pad-retaining bolt (aft) strike the inside of the fork, preventing them from opening wide. Pain in the butt, but I don't need to pull off the wheel often. Would be solved if the v-brakes were mounted on the back of the fork, like some. It works that way on the rears, those bolts don't line up with the seatstays, so the brakes open enough.

If you have disc brakes, tire size should be no issue for the above.
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Old 03-09-24, 09:10 AM
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Originally Posted by mstateglfr
25,000KM? Pfft, thats nothing.
My concrete wheels will last at least 50,000KM and STILL roll faster and more comfortably than Marathon Plus tires. Come back and brag when your frozen hose tires reach 50,000KM!
The problem is when you are doing a loaded tour, you need a tire that will wear a long time while hauling an additional 60 or more pounds of gear, and getting flat on a loaded bike is sort of a drag, so you want to prevent that as much as possible. But for riding around America those Marathon Tour Plus tires are an extreme overkill...in my opinion. Now if you were doing an expedition type of tour and will be out in the Outback far from a bike shop then maybe those tires would be idea, plus a couple of backup tires! I have ran into people touring across the US that had those Marathon Plus tires, I just don't see the point, I would rather give up some flat protection with a more comfortable riding tire, and one that takes less energy to keep them moving, and one that can go at least 6,000 miles, but I also don't want a frail tire either, so in my opinion the Schwalbe Almotion tire fulfills that niche with a bit of a cheat that I mentioned. Everyone has a different expectation of the tire they want to use, so I'm not right or wrong in my decision just as someone who wants to use the Marathon Plus Tour are also not right or wrong, it's all about what you are comfortable with using.

My old Marathon Greenguards were like riding on concrete wheels! That's why I didn't go back to that sort of tire.
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Old 03-11-24, 07:55 AM
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Originally Posted by mev
I am heavier and haven't gotten over 10,000km on a Marathon Plus tire but typically get close. However, agree they last longer than other tires that I have used. Photo below of an old tire I had worn until the blue was showing, the new replacement tire and the Amazon delivery box that I had ordered the new tire to arrive in Liberal KS for me to pick up...
You're a better man than I am, Gunga Din.
I would have been panicked if my tires wore that much, not to mention the loss of traction...
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Old 03-14-24, 08:53 PM
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I put a pair of Schwalbe Marathons (not plus) on my commuter bike that I was repurposing as a tourer and I just hated the feel of the weight. I had Gatorskins in 26x1.25, t's a weird MTB size, and I think that's it, and these aren't much different than road bike tires, maybe a little heavier but not a lot. When my touring plans got canceled because of a torn meniscus I immediately put the gators back on. With the Marathons the bike felt like it was plodding along, with the Gatorskins it feels nimble, even with the weight in the bags.

Which brings me to a question, what other tires in a 26" size would you recommend for touring? I suppose I could just do a tour in Gatorskins too as they have protaction.
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