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Gravel tires for older 27" road bikes

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Cyclocross and Gravelbiking (Recreational) This has to be the most physically intense sport ever invented. It's high speed bicycle racing on a short off road course or riding the off pavement rides on gravel like : "Unbound Gravel". We also have a dedicated Racing forum for the Cyclocross Hard Core Racers.

Gravel tires for older 27" road bikes

Old 07-20-15, 06:14 PM
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Richard8655
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Gravel tires for older 27" road bikes?

There probably were similar topics before, so sorry if so.

Raleigh Gran Sport and Fuji Supreme road bikes here from the 80's. Looking to put on wider tires with more aggressive tread for hardpack gravel bike paths around here.

Problem is I can't find anything for 27" wheels except 27x1 1/4 or 1/8 slicks. Kenda makes a 27x1 3/8 aggressive tread, but gum wall. Not crazy about gum walls.

Anyone have any success in finding something a little wider, aggressive, and more durable than GW for 27"? I know clearance may be an issue.

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Old 07-20-15, 08:01 PM
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You might look at Club Roost Cross Terra in 27x1 3/8...and please post a review if you end up trying them (or another knobby 27" tire) I'm kind of curious about them myself.
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Old 07-20-15, 08:19 PM
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Interesting possibility, thanks. I'll look into Club Roost (great name!) and check it out. Will also post what I find out and if eventually running them.
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Old 07-20-15, 08:52 PM
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I ran the Kenda Knobby 27 x 1 3/8 gumwall tires for a while and had no issues with them except I do not like gumwall tires.
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Old 07-21-15, 05:58 PM
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I'd be interested to hear how those Kenda knobbies hold up on the trail over time. I don't know why these slightly wider 27 inchers have to be gum wall.
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Old 07-21-15, 06:11 PM
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I only put about 200 miles on mine and they held up fine and were really good on dirt/gravel roads, but slow on the pavement..........





So I replaced the gumwall knobbies with some Kenda whitewall road tires.........



I ran the knobbies on my commuter while they were doing road construction and they did well on this bike also..........



So I would say if you are riding mostly on crappy pavement with some dirt/gravel these tires would be fine except the ugly gumwall color. Maybe change up your saddle and bar tape/grips with a color more suitable for gumwalls?
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Old 07-21-15, 08:16 PM
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Nice photos... those knobbies look great on your road bikes. Thanks for posting. Sounds like you had good success with them on road, gravel, and even dirt. My plans are for hardpack gravel paths, so they should work well. I don't mind the GW look at all. Looks like they're the K161 model... price is certainly right.
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Old 07-26-15, 11:14 PM
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There is another great solution to this problem - but it's a bit more expensive.

27" wheels actually have a wider rim than modern, common 700c wheels. (700C wheels are also called 28" and 29" depending on tire size.)

This means that you can fit a 700C wheel with wider tires and fenders inside a 27" frame. There are many more options for replacement wheels and tires. On the downside, you will have to purchase new wheels in addition to new tires, and you may have to purchase new "long reach" brake calipers too. However, this is a great way to modernize a retro bike with 27" wheels and get access to wider tires, too.
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Old 07-28-15, 09:03 PM
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Club Roost Cross Terra tires and call it a day. A friend of mine has some on his Fuji Del Rey as there wasn't much to pick from. He was happy and he also isn't a fan of tan sidewall tires. Plus their pretty reasonable also.
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Old 07-29-15, 09:56 AM
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I've done a few 27" to 700c conversions and I always like the result. Velomine offer a very affordable 700c wheelset with Sun CR18 rims, see: Sun CR18 Road Bike Sealed Bearing 700c Wheelset 126mm Rear [072774744381] - $120.00 Velomine.com : Worldwide Bicycle Shop, fixed gear track bike wheelsets campagnolo super record vintage bike

I find that I can fit a wider tire on the bike since the diameter is smaller.

I did this on a 1980ish Nishiki recently. The original tire was a 27x1-1/4 to a 700x38.
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Old 07-30-15, 07:37 AM
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I guess it depends if you plan on keeping it for awhile. Switching to a 700 wheel means switching to a longer reach caliper most likely. I think you looking to drop at least 200-250 for the conversion. Look around on eBay and find a used wheelset for a freewheel hub and the caliper can normally be found on the forum used or post up a WTB/ISO thread in the classic and vintage forum.

If it was me and it was a keeper bike. I'd definitely do the wheel swap as it opens up so many things. Going to a 700 means updating the bike to a modern drivetrain. You could go to a cassette hub and respace the dropouts to 130.

Though just getting picking from the few knobby 27" mean dropping like $60 instead of triple to quadruple that amount.
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Old 07-30-15, 01:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Henry III View Post
Though just getting picking from the few knobby 27" mean dropping like $60 instead of triple to quadruple that amount.
Yes, for sure. Good point.

Originally Posted by Henry III View Post
Club Roost Cross Terra tires and call it a day. A friend of mine has some on his Fuji Del Rey as there wasn't much to pick from. He was happy and he also isn't a fan of tan sidewall tires. Plus their pretty reasonable also.
Replace with 700c wheel set is definitely a possibility for the 27" frame. Maybe in the future if it turns out to be a gem and ultimately a keeper. Thanks all for the advice and suggestions. But the most cost effective option I like so far is this one... Club Roost Cross Terra and call it a day for now. A nice stepping stone before spending more.

But interesting how there are so many decent classic road bikes from the 70's and 80's still worth saving and enjoying.

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Old 08-28-22, 04:41 PM
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Cant find the Club Roost for 27"

I cant find the Club Roost for 27" anywhere, anybody find them recently ? I just put an old NOS pair of tioga Bloodhound tires on my steed but don't want to wear them out and would like to try out some of those cool looking Blackwall 27" club roost cross terra tires out, they look awesome !
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Old 08-30-22, 03:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Daveysprockets1 View Post
I cant find the Club Roost for 27" anywhere, anybody find them recently ? I just put an old NOS pair of tioga Bloodhound tires on my steed but don't want to wear them out and would like to try out some of those cool looking Blackwall 27" club roost cross terra tires out, they look awesome !
Daveysprockets, sorry but it appears it has been discontinued; I was looking for a set also, and at all the venues I looked into they all stated it "had been discontinued by the manufacturer" Ebay perhaps?
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Old 08-30-22, 06:10 PM
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Yeah that's the information I found out too, what a bummer those tires look really cool... I DID however find some new old stock Tioga Bloodhounds in my shed that I was saving for the right build, totally forgot about them 😳



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Old 09-07-22, 01:22 PM
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Originally Posted by Richard8655 View Post
I'd be interested to hear how those Kenda knobbies hold up on the trail over time. I don't know why these slightly wider 27 inchers have to be gum wall.
I have the Kenda Kross 27"x 1 3/8" tires and like them enough to be on my third set. I have gotten a lot of use from them easily several thousand miles. They ride well on gravel and are about a mile or two slower than a pasella in 1 1/4" on the road. They hold up well in gravel up to the railroad ballast size rocks on an undeveloped rail trail. On the road I run them 10# over and they can run lower for the sandy cobbles we have in New England. Good tires for the money and they come in tan wall and gum wall versions.
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Old 09-07-22, 01:40 PM
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Originally Posted by billew View Post
I have the Kenda Kross 27"x 1 3/8" tires and like them enough to be on my third set. I have gotten a lot of use from them easily several thousand miles. They ride well on gravel and are about a mile or two slower than a pasella in 1 1/4" on the road. They hold up well in gravel up to the railroad ballast size rocks on an undeveloped rail trail. On the road I run them 10# over and they can run lower for the sandy cobbles we have in New England. Good tires for the money and they come in tan wall and gum wall versions.
thats great to know, would that be the kenda k161 ?
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Old 09-09-22, 06:39 AM
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I really like my Swift Tire "Sand Canyon" tires, 27" x 1 3/8"
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