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Winter Cycling Don't let snow and ice discourage you this winter. The key element to year-round cycling is proper attire! Check out this winter cycling forum to chat with other ice bike fanatics.

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Old 01-23-17, 02:57 PM   #1
dabac
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Disappointing experience with Schwalbe Marathon Winter

Picked up a flat today - or so I thought.
And, well, since there was a hole in the tube I guess I did have a flat.
But not from one of the regular reasons, no, no.
It was the tire giving up.
About 1/3 of the studs have worn through the carcass, with the flanges at the base chafing at the tube, causing flats.

Now, I've had this happen before, to my Nokian/Suomityres.
But that was after several years of use.
This SMW didn't even last one full season.
Maybe 1200 miles and they're done.
Not what I'd consider a satisfying mileage.
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Old 01-23-17, 03:05 PM   #2
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My Suomi Nokian Mount and Ground W are now 25 years old,

I use them with thorn resistant inner tubes. 26x1.9", no its not a fast set up .

The Rubber gets harder as It gets older ..

maybe lay in a few tires and let them age a while before you use them.?




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Old 01-23-17, 03:13 PM   #3
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I've never owned that brand, but 1200 miles certainly doesn't sound like normal, mile-related wear and tear. Long shot, but you could try contacting the manufacturer and see if they are willing to replace them for you.
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Old 01-23-17, 04:16 PM   #4
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Is studded tire life limited when you ride them on clear, dry pavement?
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Old 01-23-17, 04:22 PM   #5
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I'd look into a warranty replacement. This is my 7th winter the same set of SMWs, so your experience is very different from mine.
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Old 01-24-17, 03:42 AM   #6
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Is studded tire life limited when you ride them on clear, dry pavement?


As long as you're mainly rolling along nicely, (I believe) one hard surface should have a very similar effect as any hard surface.
Can't see there being a big difference between a stud pushed against the carcass by ice or by tarmac.
Ice vs inflated rubber compared to tarmac vs inflated rubber - the rubber is still softer by orders of magnitude.


My Nokias/Suomityres lasted long enough - on the same route/ use to make tracking the entire mileage entirely unimportant. They certainly gave good value for money.
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Old 01-24-17, 03:45 AM   #7
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I'd look into a warranty replacement. This is my 7th winter the same set of SMWs, so your experience is very different from mine.

Among the local riders here there is a big spread of SMW experience. One guy managed to kill his off in 220 miles.


Others - like you - have no particular issues.


What mileage have you gotten, and what pressure do you use?
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Old 01-24-17, 08:00 AM   #8
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Interesting, as I just had the same thing happen a couple of weeks ago and wasn't too impressed. But the tire is six years old, with 3k miles on the front, and then 3k miles on the rear. I guess I can't complain about the service life, but there'll be an uneasiness with the tires from now on, wondering if or how soon I should be proactive in replacing them.

In the case of this one, its usefulness as a studded tire is about done as the inner studs are pretty worn. I have an old tire I'd thought of using as a stud donor, but that would involve a lot of work, and now with this latest wrinkle, it's not worth it. There's definitely tread left, so in that aspect, the tire has life.

Pressure: I pump them up to 80 lbs when I resurrect the winter bike in Nov or so, and may or may not top them off during the winter. I haven't played around with different pressures as they've done the job for me at whatever their current pressure is.
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Old 01-24-17, 08:44 AM   #9
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...What mileage have you gotten, and what pressure do you use?
I generally run higher pressures. 60-65 PSI or so. Tough to say on milage. Conservatively, I'd say I ride 4-500 miles a year on those tires so in six years that's 2,400-3,000 miles. Could be significantly more or less, I'm not really sure. I don't keep track of miles. A lot of those miles are on the local bike path which is plowed, but most winters there's a layer of hard-pack snowcover over the pavement so that could make a difference too. I have never gotten a flat and have never removed the tires from the rim, so I don't know what the inside looks like. I have the HS 396 26x1.75 and Schwalbe tubes that I bought from Amazon in November of 2011 if any of that helps.
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Old 01-25-17, 11:31 AM   #10
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Similar thread awhile back, it's just how they fail instead of having the tread wear out.

http://www.bikeforums.net/winter-cyc...urability.html


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Old 01-25-17, 12:41 PM   #11
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I don't use Schwalbe for winter, but I had durability problems with their fair weather tires. After I was getting a multitude of punctures with their Marathon Slicks, I was put in contact with a Schwalbe representative for US. Though I did not get a refund, I got a very good price for Marathon XRs. These worked well for me until they started tearing apart after only half of the lifetime of similarly purposed Continentals. Still, while I would never touch the Slicks, XRs are for me in the buy category.
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Old 01-25-17, 02:10 PM   #12
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I'll just put a Mr. Tuffy in there and keep riding it if that happens to mine.
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Old 03-19-17, 02:31 PM   #13
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This also happens to my Nokians after about a season or two.
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Old 03-20-17, 01:44 PM   #14
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This also happens to my Nokians after about a season or two.
All my Nokians, well, they're Suomityres nowadays, have all lasted way longer than the schwalbes. Like 4-5 times longer. But yeah, eventually they do end the same.
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Old 03-20-17, 02:01 PM   #15
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I'd look into a warranty replacement.
I did contact the national distributor, sent him some pics.
And much to my pleased surprise, he sent me a new tire. No questions asked. No arguments required.

So I offered to write some kind words about their good customer service on a local site. Thought I'd better ask them first, as I know its a fairly common issue. Any word of good help might swamp the distributor with replacement requests.

The reply was quite hilarious in its contrariness: "yes, please do write something nice about us. But you must NOT say what we helped you with, and how."

Makes for a rather wateredbdown write-up if you're not allowed to say what they did well, don't you think?
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Old 03-22-17, 06:59 AM   #16
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And much to my pleased surprise, he sent me a new tire. No questions asked. No arguments required.
Very good This is consistent with my experience with the Schwalbe's customer service. Any one person's experiences are limited, but my lists of customer service experiences for the manufacturers are as follows. Good: Schwalbe, B&M, Hebie, Topeak. Bad: Sram, Pletscher. Heck, the good experience list is longer
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Old 04-27-17, 07:48 PM   #17
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I'll just put a Mr. Tuffy in there and keep riding it if that happens to mine.
This is exactly what I've done for the last few years, and it works really well. I have not had a flat in several years now. I fasten the Mr.Tuffy liners in with 8 one-inch strips of double-sided tape rated for "outdoor" use.

I will use a new tire for a season without the liner, then install the liner for the second year on the rear wheel. I generally get 2 liner-free seasons on the front. The rear may last for 2 or 3 seasons with the liner. When I see the studs actually poking through the carcass, the tire is toast.

I believe the mechanism of the failure is this: salt and water get inside the tire holes that retain the studs. The steel "hats" that hold the carbide ends begin to rust. Rust particles collect inside the hole between the base of the stud and the carcass. Each time the stud hits the pavement, the base of the stud rubs the carcass with the abrasive corrosion products between them. Eventually this little "orbital sander" wears all the way through the carcass and, unless there's a tough liner there, causes a flat.

These are great tires. I will never ride on snow or ice again without them. They are not cheap... but what's the co-pay on a broken hip?
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Old 04-29-17, 11:43 AM   #18
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Some advice I gathered:
1. ‘Spikebike’ (lower pressure) only on those days that really require them, e.g. icy roads.
(You could increase pressure again when road conditions improve during the day.)
2. As a precaution use better inner tubes.
3. Check your tires & repair/replace.
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Old 04-29-17, 01:00 PM   #19
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I believe the mechanism of the failure is this: salt and water get inside the tire holes that retain the studs. The steel "hats" that hold the carbide ends begin to rust. Rust particles collect inside the hole between the base of the stud and the carcass. Each time the stud hits the pavement, the base of the stud rubs the carcass with the abrasive corrosion products between them. Eventually this little "orbital sander" wears all the way through the carcass and, unless there's a tough liner there, causes a flat.
But why would the Nokian/Suomityres, with a seemingly identical design, last so much longer?
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Old 04-29-17, 04:09 PM   #20
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But why would the Nokian/Suomityres, with a seemingly identical design, last so much longer?
That is a very good question!

I have a pair of Nokian Extreme 294 tires which seem to show no wear. These are 26" tires, vs the Schwalbes which are 20", so one plausible explanation for the greater wear is the smaller circumference (more revolutions pe unit distance). Also it could be that I use the Nokians on trails and frozen lakes, not salt-covered streets.
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Old 04-30-17, 02:01 AM   #21
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That is a very good question!

I have a pair of Nokian Extreme 294 tires which seem to show no wear. These are 26" tires, vs the Schwalbes which are 20", so one plausible explanation for the greater wear is the smaller circumference (more revolutions pe unit distance). Also it could be that I use the Nokians on trails and frozen lakes, not salt-covered streets.
Steve
Mine got used in as near identical situations as reality can offer. And still got very different mileages.
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Old 05-01-17, 03:41 PM   #22
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Mine got used in as near identical situations as reality can offer. And still got very different mileages.
Hard for me to say. My SMWs are 20", and ridden every (work) day during the winter, so they get more exposure and the studs hit the pavement more often. Nokians don't come in 20" format AFAIK, so I can't make a direct comparison in any case.

If I had to speculate, I'd say that the Nokian studs are somehow more resistant to corrosion since the two brands seem otherwise roughly equal in quality. That's all I got.
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