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Tire fit

Old 09-20-19, 07:21 AM
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Tire fit

Hi,
I'm having a problem fitting a folding continental gatorskin 700x23 to an old Campy Omega clincher rim - 700c. I know that this tire is supposed to be notoriously hard to mount, but this is ridiculous. Are these compatible?
Thanks,
Keith
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Old 09-20-19, 07:27 AM
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Should be compatible. Steel tire levers and a lot of work is my experience. Roger
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Old 09-20-19, 07:39 AM
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Campy rims can be tough to mount tires on or at least that has been my experience. A kool stop tire jack should do the job.
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Old 09-20-19, 09:27 AM
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If you're using Velox tape, I might consider something thinner.
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Old 09-20-19, 10:03 AM
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Tire fit from different manufacturers is akin to clothing fit from different manufacturers. They'll all have the same BSD, but some might have a little more below (inside?) that than others.
Stiffer rubber compounds make the job a little harder, supple rubber is a little easier. Gatorskins obviously come from the former group, and you might need to resort to judicious use of steel core levers to pop that bead in place. +1 to thinner rim tape, since that extra mm of depth can make the difference between needing a lever or not. I swapped the front tire this morning for a more supple compound over the Michelin ProTek I bought for better control on Mackinac Island's unpaved road segments. I only recently realized that the cheapie Forte Urban II tires that were on the bike when I bought it are 1) lighter; and 2) more supple.
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Old 09-20-19, 10:09 AM
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The smaller the profile (width) the more difficult it is to mount a tire, in my opinion. In Jamaica, last winter, I had a choice between 700c x 23 o4 700c x 32. I bought the 23s and managed to get one on the rear rim. The other one, for the front, no way! So, I went back and bought the 32s putting them on with bare hands. And I learned something - bigger is better in the world of comfort. No more 23s, or 25s for me...




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Old 09-20-19, 01:34 PM
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Some Conti road tires can be very difficult to fit on many rims. Ultra Sport II are tough as well. Same with a Vredestein Fortezza Tri Comp I mounted recently. Ditto Schwalbe One V-Guards from a couplafew years ago.

Get a Kool Stop bead jack. I rarely leave home without it stuffed in my jersey pocket, in case I flat on the road. I like Conti tires but it's almost impossible to horse 'em across some rims without leverage. And it's more difficult now with arthritis in my fingers and wrists, especially in chilly or wet weather.

There are more compact bead jacks but they don't offer the same leverage. The Kool Stop is a bit bulkier but about the same size and weight as my Topeak RaceRocket HP mini pump, so not a big deal. Sure beats wrestling with tire levers and causing pinch flats (yup, done it with brand new tubes), or making the Call of Shame.

Powdering the tube and bead can help. I used Monkey Butt skin powder the other day, since it's all I have (talc free too). Helped a lot.

Velox and other cloth tape hasn't been a problem as long as I get the narrowest tape that covers the spoke nipple holes. If the tape is wide enough to climb up the rim shoulders it'll probably hinder seating the bead. I think I use 10mm or 12mm at widest.

Not all Conti road tires are that tight. I recently tried the Grand Prix Classics, 700x25 skinwalls, and they fit fairly easily the first time, and more easily the second after the mold release and bead edge was burnished a bit from previous mounting.
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Old 09-20-19, 01:51 PM
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The tire gods are telling you not to use those tires. They're terrible. They're only good at preventing flats, on every other criteria they are junk.
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Old 09-20-19, 02:27 PM
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Crank Brothers' Speed Levers are one of the best tools ever.
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Old 09-20-19, 02:42 PM
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pedro levers work for me. i've not had one break

again, try stretching. i got the tip from a gravel forum where tubeless tires are the norm and tend to fit snug by design
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Old 09-20-19, 04:35 PM
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Something to consider with any hard-to-mount-tire. If it's that hard to get on at home will you be able to get it off if you puncture on a ride?

Many years ago, circa 1991, I had a puncture on a Michelin folding 19mm slick. I broke two tire levers getting that tire off.

Just recently I had the LBS install two Victoria Zafiro 25mm tires onto my Matrix rims. They must have had a heck of a time getting them on because when I tried to take the tire off the toasted rear wheel after a ride, I had to use the rounded ends of two cone wrenches I have in my tool box. That too was after breaking two tire levers trying to remove the tire. I'm sure glad I didn't puncture that tire/tube on a ride.

Cheers
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Old 09-20-19, 04:37 PM
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Originally Posted by thook View Post
pedro levers work for me. i've not had one break

again, try stretching. i got the tip from a gravel forum where tubeless tires are the norm and tend to fit snug by design
My Zafiro tire and Matrix rim broke one of my Pedro tire levers and one of my Zefal tire levers. then I used the rounded handle of two cone wrenches to get the tire off and that was a tough job even then.

Cheers
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Old 09-20-19, 05:12 PM
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Originally Posted by Miele Man View Post
My Zafiro tire and Matrix rim broke one of my Pedro tire levers and one of my Zefal tire levers. then I used the rounded handle of two cone wrenches to get the tire off and that was a tough job even then.

Cheers
Two words: diagonal cutters

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Old 09-20-19, 05:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Unca_Sam View Post
Two words: diagonal cutters

Huh? You want me to cut up a tire that has puncture on a ride? Or in the case of my Zafiro tires, cut up an almost brand new tire to get it off the rim? Inconceivable!

Cheers
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Old 09-20-19, 05:24 PM
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Originally Posted by ThermionicScott View Post
If you're using Velox tape, I might consider something thinner.
I've stopped using Velox tape a while ago. Not quite sure what the best alternative is. There are a couple of brands selling a reinforced plastic tape.

I've also tried veloplugs. I think they may be a might bit narrow, and have used electrical tape on top of the plugs.
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Old 09-20-19, 05:57 PM
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What have I gotten myself into?!!! I can mount the tire without a tube. With the tube, I can't see the tube when I'm trying to get the last 4" of the bead over the rim. Are there any other tires with great puncture resistance that are easier to mount?
Thanks everyone for your responses!!!!
I mY go back to riding sewups. Lol
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Old 09-20-19, 06:06 PM
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Bikemig is right on the money; the Kool Stop tire jack is the greatest tool for tough tires. I don't know why it doesn't get more recognition. It makes a horrible job easy. After you use it, you'll realize tire levers are the wrong design for mounting a difficult tire.
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Old 09-20-19, 06:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Steely roadie View Post
What have I gotten myself into?!!! I can mount the tire without a tube. With the tube, I can't see the tube when I'm trying to get the last 4" of the bead over the rim. Are there any other tires with great puncture resistance that are easier to mount?
Thanks everyone for your responses!!!!
I mY go back to riding sewups. Lol
I always adjust the tube's pressure as I mount a difficult tire. I start with the tube rounded out so there's no flap of rubber to sneek under the bead, the I let air out as I get to the point where the bead doesn't want to go on.

As canklecat mentioned, lubricating the tube and tire with powder really helps. It allows the bead to slide and thus stretch more along it's entire circumference, so the slack can be more easily concentrated toward where the lever is working.
Now tires can be quite grippy against the rim surface, so will benefit most from bead lubrication.

Sometimes you just have to pinch the beads in all the way around the tire as the tire lever is pulling, but the tension has to be maintained or the bead may slide back in the wrong direction and take the slack back up.
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Old 09-20-19, 07:06 PM
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It's the rims and not the tires. I freed a pair of nice hubs along with 64 spokes from some Matrix rims that were way too much work.
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Old 09-24-19, 09:05 AM
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Originally Posted by Classtime View Post
It's the rims and not the tires. I freed a pair of nice hubs along with 64 spokes from some Matrix rims that were way too much work.
My tires fit easily on other wheels I have. I also had different tires that went onto my Matrix rims without a problem. I think sometimes that overly tight tires are a combination of a slightly larger rim diameter and a slightly smaller tire diameter. Still, if I find a newly purchased tire to be really hard to mount I'll return that tire and get something that's easier to mount. I don't want to have to walk 40+ kilometers because I have a flat tire that I can't get off the rim.

Cheers
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Old 09-24-19, 05:40 PM
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Originally Posted by dddd View Post
I always adjust the tube's pressure as I mount a difficult tire. I start with the tube rounded out so there's no flap of rubber to sneek under the bead, the I let air out as I get to the point where the bead doesn't want to go on....
...which is exactly when the little flap of rubber so created gets trapped under the last 5 cm of bead I just snapped on.

But at least the tire's on. So when I see (by squeezing the two beads together all around the rim, starting with the last segment to mount) that the tube is herniated out from under the bead, I slip a tire lever under the bead to one side of the visible tube and elevate gently. Sometimes the herniated tube reduces spontaneously. Usually it doesn't. So I give a couple of squirts of air with the pump with one hand while keeping the bead elevated with the other. (A floor pump works better for this than a frame pump but the latter will work if the wheel is braced against a tree or some such to free both hands.) Invariably, the tube retracts back inside the bead as it rounds up -- it's the elevation of the bead away from the rim floor that allows it to do this. Then remove the tire lever and check all around the rim again for any more hernias. Inflate and ride.

On a particularly difficult rear wheel I replaced an old Campanolo aero rim with a DT Swiss rim of the same effective rim diameter -- sorting the SpocCalc rim database by ERD helped find it -- and life has never been better since. I ordered two rims but, oddly, the tire came right off the front with no difficulty. Intrigued, I tried to remount the tire and pop, went right back on. So I left it intact.

I don't like to leave a tire on a rim that I needed tire levers to mount. Will I even be able to get it off (much less back on) to fix a flat in the rain when my hands are cold?
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Old 09-24-19, 06:26 PM
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I've experienced this with new tires from time to time. I read (on this forum I think) to leave them out in direct sunlight and try again. Makes a ton of difference (provided you have a source of warm, direct sunlight).

FWIW, I've never had an issue taking a tire off that was difficult to get on.

FWIW2, I prefer snap-on rim strips to tape these days. I've had really good luck with Specialized's strips. Nashbar's are a bit wide but still work ok. Giving Ritchey a try on my current build.

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Old 09-24-19, 06:57 PM
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Originally Posted by conspiratemus1 View Post
...which is exactly when the little flap of rubber so created gets trapped under the last 5 cm of bead I just snapped on...

Could be that you let just a bit too much air out of the tube before prying on the last section of the bead(?).

I usually count on the tube having some shape to it to prevent the tube from getting trapped, even with tubes that are rated larger than the tire size.
I find that it can be difficult to dislodge a trapped tube, so I slap the deflated tire a few times away from the side with the trapped bead, which usually moves the tube back in.
I think it's partly due to the shape that tubes come out of the box that leads a deflated tube to migrate to the wrong places.
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Old 09-24-19, 09:25 PM
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Originally Posted by dddd View Post
Could be that you let just a bit too much air out of the tube before prying on the last section of the bead(?).


I usually count on the tube having some shape to it to prevent the tube from getting trapped, even with tubes that are rated larger than the tire size.

...
I'm sure you're right. If the tire is difficult I probably get frustrated and, having lost patience, just let all the air out of the tube instead of trying only a little. (There's not that much air in it to begin with.) I am very reluctant to use a tire lever to mount a tire even though my wife taught me the way that doesn't pinch the tube. So I struggle and pinch and push and curse until it snaps over by hand. The rim I replaced defeated all my efforts and needed the help of my big strong friend, Peter, now holder of the Canadian hour record for his age group, when I punctured on a ride. He was a bouncer in his young days.


I'm going to try your more judicious approach with my next puncture. Thing is, ever since beer in cans replaced beer in deposit bottles here -- the beer that gets sold to be drunk in moving cars at least -- there is very little glass on the roads and punctures don't happen often enough to keep one's technique sharp.
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Old 09-25-19, 12:29 AM
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Originally Posted by Miele Man View Post
Something to consider with any hard-to-mount-tire. If it's that hard to get on at home will you be able to get it off if you puncture on a ride?

Many years ago, circa 1991, I had a puncture on a Michelin folding 19mm slick. I broke two tire levers getting that tire off.

Just recently I had the LBS install two Victoria Zafiro 25mm tires onto my Matrix rims. They must have had a heck of a time getting them on because when I tried to take the tire off the toasted rear wheel after a ride, I had to use the rounded ends of two cone wrenches I have in my tool box. That too was after breaking two tire levers trying to remove the tire. I'm sure glad I didn't puncture that tire/tube on a ride.

Cheers
That surprises me about the Vittoria Zaffiros. Those are among the few road bike tires that I can horse across the rims with just my hands. I don't care much for the tires otherwise -- Conti Ultra Sport II are better for the same money -- but the Zaffiros with wire beads were easy to mount and remove from my rims.

But there are bound to be just enough differences in rims to make some tires easy and others a PITA.

I've also noticed most tires get easier to mount after a couple of flat repairs. My best guess is the friction burnishes the rubber over the beads and scrapes off the mold release, so it's easier to mount.
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