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Tan or black tires?

Old 01-03-21, 06:33 PM
  #26  
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Black. I hate tan walls.

This is definitely one of those things where age can affect your perspective. I am in my 30s and when I got into riding as an adult a decade ago, black sidewalls were the norm. Tan sidewalls look just as silly to me as whitewalls on a car.

It didnít help that my first experience with tan walls wasnít high end tubulars. It was pulling desiccated, disintegrating things that used to be tires off my first vintage project and putting them directly in the dumpster.
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Old 01-03-21, 06:39 PM
  #27  
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If you're bored, build up a nice set of sew up wheels, and then glue on some tan tubulars. Win win... and you WILL notice the difference.
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Old 01-03-21, 07:10 PM
  #28  
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Conti Ultra Sport II and III tires are excellent values, much better than the original US. I've run 'em for a few years, both for outdoor rides and on the Cycleops trainer. No need for pricey or specialized trainer tires.

But the semi-thick, sorta-rigid sidewalls can make for a jarring ride on chipseal. As our rural and suburban roads have gotten worse -- coarse chipseal, no "fog" coat or smooth asphalt topping -- I've switched to more supple tires.

If you don't mind, or actually like, a reddish brown sidewall, the Conti Grand Prix Classic skinwall is an outstanding value. 700x25 only, handmade in Germany, costs about $30-35 each and well worthwhile. I've run those for almost two years on one road bike. I nearly wore out the rear tire, roughly 3,000 miles, with some of the wear dimples still showing, but a sharp bit of metal anchor strap for construction sliced the tire so I've, umm... retired it. I replaced it with a new Conti GP Classic. Add latex tubes and the ride will spoil you.

Next best value might be Soma Supple Vitesse, a tan/cream skinwall. I got the SL, light enough for club racing, and it's worn surprisingly well. I expected it to wear out in less than 1,000 miles but it looks like it'll be good for 2,000 miles or more. Next time I'll get the EX for a little thicker tread and longer wear. Like the Conti GP Classic, a great riding tire. Available in all standard sizes. The 700x23 SL rides as nice as the GP Classics in 700x25.
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Old 01-03-21, 07:16 PM
  #29  
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Tan. Black tires are common and boring. *yawn*
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Old 01-03-21, 07:18 PM
  #30  
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I have a negative bias towards tan wall tires because of the bad experiences I've had with those cheap ass Kenda K35 tan walls. So, I've been putting blackwall tires on everything for about the last 5 to 10 years or so. My fave vintage blackwall tire is the Panaracer Pasela. I've installed about 1/2 a dozen pairs of these on various bikes & never had any problems. Plus, they roll very fast. Be good. Have fun.

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Old 01-03-21, 08:22 PM
  #31  
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Skinwalls. You'll be surprised how much it automatically adds a certain classiness to the bike. It'll also look very obviously C&V in the best of ways, and it'll complement the gum hoods.

The darker the frameset, the better too. They'll look fantastic on your black Holdsworth.







It's even doable in reverse.



-Kurt
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Old 01-03-21, 09:07 PM
  #32  
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Originally Posted by thook View Post
otoh, some tires with thin white walls or stripes. buuuutt, maybe nlerner's got the idea ...ha
Originally Posted by C9H13N View Post
Black. I hate tan walls.

This is definitely one of those things where age can affect your perspective. I am in my 30s and when I got into riding as an adult a decade ago, black sidewalls were the norm. Tan sidewalls look just as silly to me as whitewalls on a car.

It didnít help that my first experience with tan walls wasnít high end tubulars. It was pulling desiccated, disintegrating things that used to be tires off my first vintage project and putting them directly in the dumpster.
Iím 65, tan sidewalls used to be the norm, and on clinchers the tan sidewalls never aged well. Thankfully lots of high quality black walls now, Always thought whitewalls on cars looked silly too.
Tim
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Old 01-03-21, 10:14 PM
  #33  
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If you stay black, get a black large chainring. Tanwalls need silver rims, maybe. Nice 🚲 bicycle anyway.
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Old 01-03-21, 10:20 PM
  #34  
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Another vote for tan/gumwall tires! Here's my 1980 Raleigh Competition with Panaracer Ruffy Tuffy tires.

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Old 01-04-21, 01:13 AM
  #35  
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Definitely tan and probably silver rims, but at least tan tires. Will mix with the hoods nice and subtly. Black tires can be ok on vintage bikes but not typically when the rest of the bike is almost entirely black, in my opinion.
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Old 01-04-21, 04:47 AM
  #36  
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Rarely do I not have an opinion, regarding which choice of what, but this time that is not so. I am a gum wall fan but in this case, I am not sure that they would work, in the aesthetic sense. Then again, the wee bit of contrast might take the bike from good looking to looking great. Think about it for a while or ever. I am still in the forever stage when it comes to changing some things on some of my bikes. I always tell myself that the opportunity will always be there until I choose to take it.

Decision time at my end, now that I have actually given it some thought - I would switch to the gum walls. Though not black, this old Bianchi sported gumwalls until they self destructed, after which I installed larger width black hoops. My bike is not black, ridden a lot and dirty as some words that come to mind. A, sort of, chance to compare...


I was forced to use the black walls (long story but no choice was available in rural Jamaica at the time). They gums were 28 mm the blacks 32. And I am so glad that this happened. I learned to appreciate larger tires...
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Old 01-04-21, 05:54 AM
  #37  
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With so much back on the bike, tan would be my choice.
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Old 01-04-21, 07:22 AM
  #38  
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Definitely want to go wider, 23ís use to be my go to size but theres plenty of room for wider tires. Think Iím settled on tan wall Veloflex masters in a 28.
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Old 01-04-21, 11:59 AM
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Sounds like you made a decision, sloar, but here's a quick mockup for you.

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Old 01-04-21, 12:17 PM
  #40  
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Originally Posted by squarenoise View Post
Sounds like you made a decision, sloar, but here's a quick mockup for you.


Thank you, thatís awesome. Iím always amazed with the members on this forum.
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