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Which Tire Wears Faster?

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Which Tire Wears Faster?

Old 04-22-21, 12:06 AM
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urbanknight
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Which Tire Wears Faster?

Just curious now that I am riding a tandem regularly. I know that on my single bike, the rear tire wears much more quickly than the front. What's your experience with this on a tandem? Does it matter which rider is heavier (i.e. less wear on whichever end has the lighter rider)?
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Old 04-22-21, 02:31 AM
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I don't ride a tandem, but:

I have found on a regular mountain bike, the rear tire wears faster than the front. It is somewhere near two back tires to one front tire.

On my fat bike, the back tire wears only a little faster than the front. It is somewhere near four back tires to three front ones.

There are probably other factors that also influence this. For example, where I ride the fat bike there are few hills. There is also a large proportion of dirt tracks. It seems tires last longer on dirt tracks than solid surfaces.

I use the front brake much more than the back in both situations.
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Old 04-22-21, 05:06 AM
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Back tire.
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Old 04-22-21, 06:31 AM
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Originally Posted by Artmo View Post
Back tire.
+1 and the captain is heaver than the stoker.
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Old 04-23-21, 06:17 AM
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Rear tire. But captain 98 and stoker 51, weigth distribution 53% front 47 r.ear. This means more rolling resistance up front than solo bike.
Tires wear out faster on tandem than solo bike. Especially on technical offroad where the brakes are used a lot. But no difference between ebike and ecobike.
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Old 04-24-21, 07:57 AM
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Rear tire, especially in hills. Road surface, like chip and seal, wear tires faster.
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Old 04-24-21, 08:21 AM
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The rear tire on a tandem is going to wear faster because the drive power of two people are generating a pulling force upon it. the front tire is just rolling (around). Nothing to do with rider(s) weight or distribution.
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Old 04-26-21, 08:35 AM
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Originally Posted by headwind15 View Post
The rear tire on a tandem is going to wear faster because the drive power of two people are generating a pulling force upon it. the front tire is just rolling (around). Nothing to do with rider(s) weight or distribution.
Weight has a big influence on wear caused by braking. And when I compare the wear of similar tyres on our tandem and my MTB there's definitely an influnce of weight.
Rolling resistance also increases linear with weight.
Steering power and rough road surface also inluences wear.
But driving power also plays a role naturally.
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Old 05-04-21, 05:33 AM
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I don't think it's about the weight of the riders it's about the 2x power. When I buy tires I buy three. The rear tire wears 2x as fast as the front so I can replace the rear tire (at about 3,000 km or so) and the new rear tire still wears out a before the front tire.
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Old 05-04-21, 02:11 PM
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But if you visit Co-Motion's website, you'll find they recommend always replacing the front tire! They place so much importance of a new, trustworthy tire on the front wheel that they recommend whenever replacing a tandem tire, to put the new on the front. So if you wear your your rear tire first, swap the front tire to the rear and put the replacement on the front.

The thinking is this: a blown tire is more easily coasted to a stop when it's on the rear. A front blowout is usually a crash. I, however, am the exception! My VERY first road tandem ride involved a front tire blow out on a two-lane country road. I still thank my lucky stars to this day that I stayed upright and did not drift over the centerline and into oncoming traffic! That would have been the beginning and end of a life of tandeming and probably the relationship with my future wife! I did the dumbest thing you could do: put used tires on a tandem build! Funds were limited and I had access to used inventory so I did it. Never again. In fact, I just pulled off the "perfectly good" used Continental tires on the Co-Motion to replace them with brand new Contis. Again, I won't make that mistake ever again!

That said, a framebuilder I know scoffed at our current mechanic doing a tire swap when a customer needed a new tire. He was annoyed that a mechanic would make a simple tire replacement job more complicated and labor-intensive. Plus, you're doubling your liability switching two tires when it's just a SINGLE TIRE installation. I can totally appreciate this approach as well.

You decide!
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Old 05-05-21, 08:50 AM
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I doubt that weight distribution makes much difference, although a heavier stoker might slow the rear wear down a little. Tandem rears wear much faster than single rears ridden by the same riders. The issue is the increased torque on the rear wheel because 2 riders are torqueing it, not just one. Tandem fronts also wear faster if they are ridden as fast as a single due to the increased braking force on a tandem and the greater force on both tires in a corner or turn, though front wear is not as obvious as rear wear.
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Old 05-07-21, 12:58 AM
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If that's true, does a cyclist who averages 200 W also wear out a rear tire, but not front tire, 2x as fast as one who averages 100W and weighs the same amount?
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Old 05-17-21, 03:11 AM
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[QUOTE=UCantTouchThis;22037264]Not sure about your tandem, but ours, the stoker seems to sit more on the rear tire than the captain does on the front. So I don't see why it would be any different than a single. Rear.

/QUOTE]
To measure the weight distribution u need two scales. If stoker weighs only 50% of the captain's weight thjer wil be more weight on the front. Steering angle, fork rake, stem length, reach, sag, wheel base etc influence weight distribution also.
Just like the sitting position of the stoker. The longer the reach, the slacker the stearing angle the less weight on the front.
The weight plays a big role : why a tandem is like a snail in uphills : double weight double rolling resistance, the slower the higher the influence of rolling resistance.
On my first short tandem I feel the extra rolling and steering resistance (weight 50/50). A 2 inch tyre was too much.

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Old 05-17-21, 11:39 PM
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Originally Posted by longpete View Post
To measure the weight distribution u need two scales. If stoker weighs only 50% of the captain's weight thjer wil be more weight on the front. Steering angle, fork rake, stem length, reach, sag, wheel base etc influence weight distribution also.
Just like the sitting position of the stoker. The longer the reach, the slacker the stearing angle the less weight on the front.
The weight plays a big role : why a tandem is like a snail in uphills : double weight double rolling resistance, the slower the higher the influence of rolling resistance.
On my first short tandem I feel the extra rolling and steering resistance (weight 50/50). A 2 inch tyre was too much.
In this case, the stoker is less than 1/3 the weight of the captain!

The rolling resistance is curious to me. What then makes a moving tandem so unstoppable on flats and descents? Momentum?
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Old 05-18-21, 12:49 AM
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Originally Posted by urbanknight View Post
Just curious now that I am riding a tandem regularly. I know that on my single bike, the rear tire wears much more quickly than the front. What's your experience with this on a tandem? Does it matter which rider is heavier (i.e. less wear on whichever end has the lighter rider)?
Always the rear tire, but if there's more weight on the front then the front tire wears faster and the rear a bit slower than with a normal 60/40 distribution.(in my experience). Normally it's 1.75 rear tire for one front tire. On our MTB tandem it's 1.25(cause by breaking I think).
Road tandem is 1.5. Our technical testride is all about constantly braking shifting, turning, accelerating, body English. She hates it. But only way to teach her how to ride technically.
A tandem has two big problems : rear bracket or her pedals touching the ground in steep up and downhill and the fact that the rear end turns a lot tighter than the front.I also had to cut her bar down to 56 to reduce the input of her moving to my steering.
A fork with a rake of 37mm (shorter wheelbase)makes the steering too nervous.

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Old 05-18-21, 12:57 AM
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Originally Posted by urbanknight View Post
In this case, the stoker is less than 1/3 the weight of the captain!

The rolling resistance is curious to me. What then makes a moving tandem so unstoppable on flats and descents? Momentum?
Weight I suppose. More weight (gravity≥)combined with less frontal surface(air resistance≤). In onroad descents I also use 17.5 cm dropper seatpost with the tandem and I go a lot faster on the same road with the tandem and a flatbar.
Frontal surface maybe 20% bigger, but weight 70% more (bike+her). 10kg more weight is about 3 km/h faster(but u need some distance without using the brakes to benifit from this advantage) Once u break u have to to start all over again to reach bealnce between gravity and cobination of rolling(minimum) and air resistance. 5% more is about 1 km/h faster per 10kg.

But on the flats and uphil I noticed this: the power of the stoker is not always extra power : with us it's more like : ad her power and my power and divide by two.
Say hers is 50% and mine 100% than total power is 75% of my power on a solo bike.
Actually I'm slower on the tandem. But this way tandem rides make fun for her. That's also why I choose an E mtb tandem. In winter the 10 to 20% support of the EP8
motor makes the ride more fun. Now with our condition getting better half of the time we ride faster than 25km/h and one 630 watt batterie lasts for 160 km on flat rides.

Last edited by longpete; 05-18-21 at 08:43 AM.
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