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View Poll Results: What width are you using?
36mm or wider
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 28. You may not vote on this poll

Fun With Tires

Old 10-03-22, 11:44 AM
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Fun With Tires

Hey all, after a long time off the bike (don't ask, don't tell) I am slowly getting back into longer distance rides. In my absence, it appears that the New Hotness is wider tires run at lower pressures. So, I'm curious what width people are typicalling using for long rides / randos on pavement these days.
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Old 10-03-22, 11:53 AM
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I ride a flatbar fitness / city / gravel bike and prefer 700x32c tires..

While I don't do super long rides, I do a century every so often.
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Old 10-03-22, 12:19 PM
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I'm sticking with 32mm, I think. I have done quite a bit of riding on 40mm, up to 600km brevet successfully. I'm planning on getting some faster 32mm, the gravelking slicks in 32mm I have been riding are apparently much slower than some other tires, and they are fairly fragile in my experience.
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Old 10-03-22, 02:50 PM
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32 is pretty cool--the old 1 1/4" on my 27" bike currently for sale.
28s on my commuter with no fenders.
25s on my planned Rando bike are unexpectedly smooth. Part of that is the 531 throughout frameset. A nice benefit is extra room under my 40mm fenders.
22s on my weekend warrior bike that has done several 200k rides.
I don't do: disks, tubeless, e-shifting, or bead head nymphs.
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Old 10-03-22, 03:01 PM
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I like around 42 to almost 50 on my hybrids.
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Old 10-03-22, 09:32 PM
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700x28c Panaracer GravelKings on my Fuji Transonic, that's the largest size that my frame supports anyway.
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Old 10-04-22, 06:26 AM
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I ride 650bx42 (Pacent Pari-motos for most rides, Rene Herse regular casing when I get to the longer brevets). I like to mix dirt roads and unpaved trail surfaces into my rides to avoid traffic and have a more enjoyable, adventuresome ride. If I lived somewhere with nothing but smooth roads and no traffic, Id probably still ride 700x28-32 for long distance.

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Old 10-04-22, 06:48 AM
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The move to wider and lower-pressure tires seems to have tracked with cyclists getting older and heavier, in the US, anyway. The narrower tires were in common use on more expensive road bikes from the '70s to the early '2000s or so here in the US (when all riders were younger and most were lighter) because that's what European racers used.

At 115 to 120 pounds, I'm about 20 pounds lighter at age 71 than I was at my prime racing weight, but I now use 25s or (mostly) 28s on my road bikes and 32s on my hybrid bike. Far fewer flats than with 23s, and the tires last longer. I don't notice any difference in comfort, but then I've never understood the whole "comfort" thing for bikes. Two sets of tape on the bars, and I'm good.
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Old 10-04-22, 07:53 AM
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There is no doubt a lot of us are heavier than we used to be, but the average sport bike in the '70s came with 32mm tires. And those tires weren't as good as what we have now. When I first started randonneuring, I used to ride with the fast guys until they dropped me and then I would ride with them again after they got a flat. That way I always had someone to ride with! Which is nice if you are going to be riding into the night.
I think most of the fast guys I know started riding bigger tires so they wouldn't get as many flats. Certainly in the areas I ride, the roads aren't all that great and it's nice not to have to worry about everything you might hit while you are riding at night. Nothing like fixing a flat after you hit a pothole in the dark.
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Old 10-04-22, 03:02 PM
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28s since 1989ish but using 25s currently because I found a good deal. Still prefer the 28s but have no problems using the 25s on my first double century (three years ago). Wish they start the advertising the opposite because it's driving my cost up.
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Old 10-06-22, 03:44 PM
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I've been riding on supple 700x44s for a couple of years now - the brevets I ride have enough gravel and roads in disrepair that I've never really regretted having the 44s at a cushy 40psi. Every time I consider going smaller I just end up buying a new 44mm tire. Jan Heine's data says I'm not any slower on the 44 than I would be on a 28 or 32, but of course he's also selling me the 44mm tire so perhaps I should be less credulous and try a narrower tire on the same bike/wheelset/roads to verify for myself.
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Old 10-06-22, 06:18 PM
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I tried 650bx42 and it was nice to have for gravel but I didn't find it a big improvement on pavement... frost heave makes some brutal cracks on the roads and they were just as jarring as the 700x28 I have on my road bike. I switched my road bike to tubeless gp5000 and they are fast and comfortable on the pavement... wish I could fit 32mm on my road bike, I enjoyed the compass 32mm tires on a touring bike years ago but found I the sidewalls rotted out before the tread was worn out, so not a great value for me.
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Old 10-07-22, 04:23 PM
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38-42mm is practically all I've ridden since 2013.
Originally Posted by chandltp View Post
There's no such thing as too far.. just lack of time
Originally Posted by noglider
People in this forum are not typical.
RUSA #7498
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Old 10-11-22, 05:18 AM
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28s (Conti GP5000s, previously 25mm Gp4000s which were really about 27-28 wide) on my brevet bike, the widest I can wedge under fenders. I have done a few randonneuring rides on my gravel bike on 38s (Panaracer gravelking slicks) and my performance wasnt badthe gravel bike is a little heavier and a little more upright so its not apples to apples.

Plus Ive run the 28mm panaracers on my brevet bike and it was a bit slower than the Contis, although they are definitely faster to change a flat on.
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Old 10-11-22, 05:28 AM
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Road bike-28mm
Bad weather road bike-32mm
gravel bike-44mm
cross bike-35mm
touring bike-32mm
fat bike-4.5 inches
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