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26" tire mistake

Old 12-25-21, 02:47 PM
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cjenrick
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26" tire mistake

yes i know it has been covered here but i got burned for $100 on a couple of orders before the mistake was realized.
so that maybe someone else might get burned i am posting this friendly reminder.

back in the day when i walked into the payless Hardware Store around 1933, you could buy a 26 x 1 3/8" tire and it would fit a 26" rim.

not any more.

so be careful out there1

you need to realize that you want a number called 559, and not a number called 590.

one is for a 26" rim and the other i suppose is for a 650B rim.

i made the same mistake on a schwalbe marathon and a continental gatorskin

mistake number 2. this tire made it from London to the us in about 3 days with free shipping so i do not have the heart to return it. i will donate it to the local bike shop>

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Old 12-25-21, 02:51 PM
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How did $44.84 jump to $100?
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Old 12-25-21, 02:52 PM
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this helps>

https://www.sheldonbrown.com/tire-sizing.html

and there is an online schwalbe catalog here>
https://www.schwalbetires.com/sites/...21_English.pdf

pic of what to watch for>
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Old 12-25-21, 02:55 PM
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wheels, in the first post:
"i made the same mistake on a schwalbe marathon and a continental gatorskin"
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Old 12-25-21, 02:59 PM
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Probably bought a pair for a 2-wheeled bike and Ebay collects sales tax on this end even for items from overseas.
To the thread starter - read this https://www.sheldonbrown.com/tire-sizing.html
If you had looked at the sidewall of the old tire you would have seen something like 26 X 1.375 embossed on the tire. Lots of us have made this mistake before we realized you can't translate decimal tire size to fractional inch and get the same tire. Found that out with my first recumbent when I tried to buy a rear tire at my local WalMart. It didn't fit even though it said 20" on the tire. Fortunately I was only out a couple of bucks.

You could always put it for sale on Craigslist or Facebook and give somebody a decent price for a brand new tire.
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Old 12-25-21, 03:02 PM
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here is another chart from performance (scroll down)>

https://www.performancebike.com/cont...rgqhe?v=326281


here is what the label will look like if you screw up like this poor slob>


Last edited by cjenrick; 12-25-21 at 03:09 PM.
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Old 12-25-21, 03:08 PM
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The 559 is pretty common for MTBs, and most modern bikes.

The other sizes 26x1 3/8 is for some more vintage bikes, old Raleighs, etc. I really think an online vendor should have some really big TEXT to verify a buyer knows what they are buying when they get one of these.

Several sizes have similar issues. I use 20" (451) on one of my bikes, and know to specifically look for that size.
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Old 12-25-21, 03:56 PM
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Originally Posted by cjenrick View Post
yes i know it has been covered here but i got burned for $100 on a couple of orders before the mistake was realized.
so that maybe someone else might get burned i am posting this friendly reminder.

back in the day when i walked into the payless Hardware Store around 1933, you could buy a 26 x 1 3/8" tire and it would fit a 26" rim.

not any more.

so be careful out there1

you need to realize that you want a number called 559, and not a number called 590.

one is for a 26" rim and the other i suppose is for a 650B rim.

i made the same mistake on a schwalbe marathon and a continental gatorskin

mistake number 2. this tire made it from London to the us in about 3 days with free shipping so i do not have the heart to return it. i will donate it to the local bike shop>

Although it’s better to go by the ETRTO or ISO number when it comes to tire size, another way to tell the difference is by the fractional number. If the fraction of an inch is fractional, it is usually 590mm ETRTO tire while a decimal is the 559mm tire. That’s not perfect, however since there is another 26” “size” that is a 597mm rim. Those are Schwinn S sizes. There is also a 571mm tire that is known as a 26” tire (650C) and a 584mm tire which is a 650B. Your 590mm tire is a really odd duck in that it is an English 26” tire.
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Old 12-25-21, 05:11 PM
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Originally Posted by cjenrick View Post
you need to realize that you want a number called 559, and not a number called 590.

one is for a 26" rim and the other i suppose is for a 650B rim.
Nominal 26" tires are a hot mess. Ignore everything except the ETRTO tire size designation, which will look something like this: "38-559" where the first number is the nominal width of the tire in millimeters and the second number the bead seat diameter in millimeters. Rims can accommodate a range of widths, so the first number only matters to determine if your frame has sufficient clearance for the tire. Anything narrower than the current tire will work; anything wider, you'd better check how much clearance you have. The second number is the important one, in that it must match your current tire, or the new tire won't even mount on your rim.

N.B. 559mm is the common bead seat diameter for "mountain bikes." 571mm is sometimes referred to as "650C" and may be found on road bikes for small riders. 584mm is "650B" or "27.5" and is becoming a popular choice for gravel bikes and people looking to run wider tires on road bikes. 590mm is "650A" or "26 x 1-3/8" and is commonly found on British and Japanese 3-speeds.
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Old 12-25-21, 07:32 PM
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i guess i could always buy a 650B bike,

you can never own too many bicycles, right?
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Old 12-25-21, 07:40 PM
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Get a Raleigh 3sp and you have new tires.(Unless it is a Superbe with 28" wheels [whatever the hell 28" works out to])
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Old 12-25-21, 07:55 PM
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The wonders of inch sizes

Originally Posted by dmark View Post
Get a Raleigh 3sp and you have new tires.(Unless it is a Superbe with 28" wheels [whatever the hell 28" works out to])
28" tires are how Europe refers to 700c, even though 700c is smaller than 27" tires. Why are they named 28" when they're actually smaller than 27"? Well, because 27" was already taken! Again, almost all of the regulars here know this stuff; but the ISO or ETRTO sizing is the only way to know for sure what the rim size is.
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Old 12-25-21, 08:02 PM
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Originally Posted by BlazingPedals View Post
28" tires are how Europe refers to 700c, even though 700c is smaller than 27" tires. Why are they named 28" when they're actually smaller than 27"? Well, because 27" was already taken! Again, almost all of the regulars here know this stuff; but the ISO or ETRTO sizing is the only way to know for sure what the rim size is.
I thought so but was not sure but posted here in the spirit of tire confusion.
I have earned to always check ETRTO.
Thanks.
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Old 12-25-21, 08:03 PM
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Originally Posted by JohnDThompson View Post
590mm is "650A" or "26 x 1-3/8" and is commonly found on British and Japanese 3-speeds.
I've also found it to be rather common on older department store "10 speeds"
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Old 12-25-21, 08:09 PM
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The way Schwalbe uses inches to describe their tires is atrocious.
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Old 12-25-21, 09:13 PM
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The way Schwalbe uses inches to describe their tires is atrocious.
My understanding is that is how to know the correct tire for a classic English bike. 26 X 1 /3/8" is different from 26 X 1.375. The confirmation is the 37 X 590. Same for Schwinn with 26 S6 rims 26 X 1 3/8 but its 37 X 597
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Old 12-25-21, 09:47 PM
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this stuff can be dangerous in the automotive industry.

isn't there a 16" rim and a16.5" rim such that mounting the 16.5" tire on the 16" rim and inflating can rip your head off and just leave the spinal column?

this darn tire, i coiled it into two loops to see if it would fit back in the bag it came in and it uncoiled and hit me in the nose. adding injury to insult, 44 dollars and a sore nose and i have only myself to blame.

Last edited by cjenrick; 12-25-21 at 09:51 PM.
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Old 12-26-21, 12:29 AM
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I you are not sure what rim you have, you can measure the circumference of the bead seat with a tape measure. The 559 should measure about 1756mm (559 * Pi), the 590 is much bigger at 1853mm.
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Old 12-26-21, 07:37 AM
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Originally Posted by BlazingPedals View Post
28" tires are how Europe refers to 700c, even though 700c is smaller than 27" tires. Why are they named 28" when they're actually smaller than 27"? Well, because 27" was already taken! Again, almost all of the regulars here know this stuff; but the ISO or ETRTO sizing is the only way to know for sure what the rim size is.
The response above was offered for a post asking about Raleigh roadster bikes with 28" wheels (28 x 1 1/2, as used on the Raleigh DL-1, for example). Clarification: 28 x 1 1/2 is not equivalent to 700c = 622; it's 635 and thus incompatible with 700c tires and wheels..
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Old 12-26-21, 10:21 AM
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Originally Posted by cjenrick View Post
this stuff can be dangerous in the automotive industry.
isn't there a 16" rim and a 16.5" rim such that mounting the 16.5" tire on the 16" rim and inflating can rip your head off and just leave the spinal column?
Older light truck, skidsteer, farm implements ran 16.5". As far as light trucks it's pretty much a dead size. I have a pickup with 16.5 rims and your choice for tires is 1 or 2 highway tread or $$ off road tires. If and when I replace the tires I'll have to buy 16 or 17" rims. But yeah a 16.5 on a 16" rim is bad sauce.
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Old 12-26-21, 11:11 AM
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In the bicycle world, the tire size in inches is the approximate outer diameter of the tire.

16", 20", 22", 24", 26", 27", 28", 29", etc.

It becomes problematic when there is a choice of widths offered for each tire size. So, to get around the issue, they created numerous rim sizes (and, of course, bicycles and bicycle standards from around the world).

Rim sizes became a little more important when starting to standardize things like "sewup" tires and clincher tires.

The tricky thing is if you choose to mix, say MOPED tires and BICYCLE tires. It can be done in certain situations. I've replaced Schwinn 16x3 bicycle tires with moped tires, and am happy with the result.

For those still riding bikes from the 1950's, it is nice to see that Schwalbe is continuing to support them.

If you really don't want the tires, sell them on Craigslist, E-Bay, or even the bicycle marketplace here.
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Old 12-26-21, 12:45 PM
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Originally Posted by cjenrick View Post
i guess i could always buy a 650B bike,

you can never own too many bicycles, right?
That's the spirit.
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Old 12-26-21, 01:02 PM
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Originally Posted by BlazingPedals View Post
28" tires are how Europe refers to 700c, even though 700c is smaller than 27" tires. Why are they named 28" when they're actually smaller than 27"? Well, because 27" was already taken! Again, almost all of the regulars here know this stuff; but the ISO or ETRTO sizing is the only way to know for sure what the rim size is.
That's wrong. 28" came way before 27" was developed.
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Old 12-26-21, 01:05 PM
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Originally Posted by cjenrick View Post
i guess i could always buy a 650B bike,

you can never own too many bicycles, right?
You bought 26x1 3/8, or 590 ISO.

650B is 584 ISO (usually marked 27.5").

Your tires won't fit.

650A is 590 ISO, but rarely used with that designation.

You could, of course, rebuild wheels with obsolete rim sizes.

But, if you want to used those tires, hunt for a vintage 3 speed, Raleigh, Robin Hood, etc. I think I also have a Gitane tandem with 26x1 3/8 wheels.
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Old 12-26-21, 01:09 PM
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People like to ***** about the variety of "26-inch" wheel standards, but any number of things are the same way -- light bulb sockets, screw threads, USB cables, languages, you name it. The solution isn't to get angry, it's to take some time and educate yourself.
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