Tire options

mxs

Speeding Up
May 14, 2010
65
13
28
Tokyo, Japan
#1
Tried searching, but no luck. I would like to get people's opinions on a good set of clincher tires. I currently am using a set of Panaracer Closers, which I like. They are not too expensive at the shops here in Japan and they are not terrible in regards to punctures. However my biggest issue is that they are nearly impossible to get on/off my Easton EA 50SLs (popped two tubes trying to get them on last time).
 
Sep 2, 2009
5
0
0
#2
Try searching 'tyres' ;)

I use Vittoria tyres at the moment. I have Rubino Pro and Open Corso Evo CX.

Both good tyres, with the Corso being the better of the two. I have both in 23 size.
 

GSAstuto

Maximum Pace
Oct 11, 2009
945
242
103
tokyo
www.roadfixie.com
#3
Conti Gatorskins all the way! If you like more performance (read slightly lower weight) then I'd go for either the Conti 4000's or the EVO CX's. Concure w/Owen - I run the 23's on my clincher rims and no issues. Currently prefer the Gators simply cause they are more puncture and skid-wear proof. Plus they come in tubular or clincher.
 
May 22, 2007
3,630
1,463
143
Kawasaki
halffastcycling.com
#4
I use Panaracer Race Type D tires, on Mavic Ksyrium Elite wheels. I like these tyres because they are very very tough against punctures. They can be hard to get on and off the rims, especially when the tires are new. One of the reasons I like these wheels is that they don't have any spoke holes or rim tape so my tubes are safer.
[...] my biggest issue is that they are nearly impossible to get on/off my Easton EA 50SLs (popped two tubes trying to get them on last time).
Oh dear.

I had a quick look at reviews for those Easton EA50 SL wheels. Many users seem to find it terribly difficult to get tires on and off. See here for example. So you're not alone.

"Get better wheels" may not be an option for you right now. But if your rim diameter is even marginally out of spec (it's supposed to be 622 mm I think), then it's likely that you will always have problems fitting and removing tires on those wheels.

Unless you're using 300 yen tubes, or the tubes have been stored badly (too hot/cold/humid) for years, they should be able to take a little punishment.

There are as many ways to change a tire/tube as there are people who try to do it. In the club I try to let people handle repairs themselves unless it's clear to me that they're going to damage themselves or their equipment. Then either I'll offer some friendly advice over the shoulder or I will take over with narration.

My top 3 tips...

  • Use tire levers. That's what they're for. Some people reckon they don't need them. Maybe they don't need them. I do, for my tires.
  • Both when removing and fitting the tire to the rim, start and finish away from the valve section.
  • Before you position the tube into the tire, pump a little air in to make sure the tube is evenly tensioned and not twisted. Let the air out again before you start to fit the final bead.
  • Look carefully at what you're doing while you fit the beads. Look again afterwards. Check right round both sides of the rim/bead interface to make sure there's no herniated tube.
  • If you are able, shake the tube first in a Ziplock bag containing some baby/talcum powder. The powder helps absorb any moisture and provides lubrication at the rubber/rubber interface. This reduces the risk of failure and future changes will then be much quicker as the tube won't stick to the inside of the tire. (I have such a bag at home and use it over and over again. A little messy but very effective.)
  • Use the end of the tire lever to tuck/push the tube up into the tire space as you reach final closure.
  • Use the length of the valve to push the tube away from the rim and into the tire space at that section.
  • If your tubes have a threaded stem and a little knurled ring, use the ring!
  • Whenever possible, use a floor pump or other type of pump with a hose, to avoid stressing the valve against the rim.
  • When doing final inflation, put in around 10 psi just to get the shape. Let it all out. Go round the rim again, rocking the tire off both beads to make sure the tube isn't trapped. Then and only then go for full pressure.

OK that's far more than three. You may be doing all or most of these already. I've included everything I can think of for other readers' benefit as well.

I keep meaning to make a YouTube video of all this. It takes a couple more minutes than a 'speed change', but in my experience it results in a much more reliable fix.

But it won't solve the problem if your wheels are not the correct size. :( Not your fault of course. If you want to eliminate this as a possibility, try swapping tires to a different brand of wheel.
 

Gunjira

Maximum Pace
Oct 2, 2009
1,003
176
83
Tokyo
#7
+1 for the gatorskins, which I run on all rear wheels outside the velodrome. Haven't had a puncture with them yet in almost a year. For performance on the front I like vittoria open tubulars or their varieties (open corsa, etc)

I think the best puncture protection is running the tires at right pressure and looking where you going.
 

chazzer

Speeding Up
Nov 23, 2006
449
0
36
Bushey Heath, Hertfordshire
#8
UK tyres

Hi

Interesting thread!

Moving to the UK and riding here has put me much more on the defensive re tyres. London roads and also Hertfordshire too are full of debris and a lot of potholes. It is rare to find anything that is as nice as (most of) the well finished bitumen back in Japan. I am thinking of the perfect slopes of One Kan here.

I now use Conti Gatorskins on the commuting bike and also use them on longer distance audax events where outright speed is not so important.Combined with Conti tubes (not the lightweight racing ones) these are close to bulletproof. That said I have the weekly ritual of pulling stones and chips from the carcass to keep them rolling well.

I have also used Conti GP4000 on the road bikes and these have also been very reliable, both here and in Japan. Recently, Cycling Plus reviewed all of the usual suspects and rated the Vredestein Fortezza TriComp very highly, particularly for the best combination of speed, low rolling resistance and durability. Also available in some snazzy colours!

So, I snagged a pair of blue ones for the London Edinburgh ride as blue matched the bike and the charity sponsor colour scheme as well! They did the job very well allied to Conti tubes and did not let me down until we arrived in Edinburgh when three of the team slow punc'ed in unison, presumably over some left over glass from the late night revelers on the Royal Mile! So I forgave the tyres there and then.

I thought nothing of it at the time and did not get to the bike until well into last week to clean up following this epic in wind and rain. As I rotated the unpunctured front I found a massive cut to the sidewall which had compromised the carcass. There was a visible bulge but the strength of the design and the material meant that the tyre had held together OK. I have no idea when this happened and whether I had picked this up in Edinburgh too or had ridden large parts of the event with this.

So, regrettably, but also thankfully, I ordered another nice blue and anthracite tyre to replace it. Overall these tyres have proved themselves to me, albeit with a very short life for one of them.

Also loved Mike's tips - do most of them, but the Ziploc bag is a new one for me. I can change any tyres on my Mavic rims quite easily using levers to remove and, usually, just fingers and thumbs to get the new tyre on. I love that satisfying pop as the bead finally flips over that last section of rim.

The Cycling Plus ratings overall were No 1 - Schwalbe Ultremo ZX HD as Best on Test, Vredestein Fortezza TriComp as Best Long Life and Continental GP4000S as Best for Value.

Cheers everyone

chazzer
 

mxs

Speeding Up
May 14, 2010
65
13
28
Tokyo, Japan
#9
Thanks for the info guys. I think that I am going to give Conti's a try. Half-fast, while I do about half of those 'tips' the other half are new to me so thanks for the tip and hopefully it will help some.

Does anyone have a preference for good tire levers or are they all pretty much the same?

The rim issue makes sense now. I got them for fairly cheap so I can deal with it for now. I just saw a review of them in one of the cycling mags at Kinokuniya. It is a big shame that they had nothing to say about any of this, just that they were 'a great rim' essentially.