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Tyres for my hybrid

Discussion in 'Components, Accessories and Clothing' started by Nick1979, 15 May 2008.

  1. Nick1979

    Nick1979 New Member

    Location:
    London (SW11)
    Hi all,

    As it is my first post (after a few weeks reading a lot of your interesting discussions here), let me introduce myself: I'm Nick, a new cycler living in Southwest London (in case someone around here is looking for a newbie cycling buddy!). I bought a Trek 7200 hybrid last year (my first bike ever!) which I use for (short-ish) rides at weekends.

    My question is about tyres, I've read a lot about how the tyres fitted to this kind of bike (Bontrager Select Invert, 35mm in my case) are slow and crappy on the road.
    I ride quite a bit on good quality off-road paths (nice trails, towpaths... NOT serious off-road), I would say 40% path, 60% tarmac on my usual Sunday loop. So I wonder if I should bother changing my tyres to something narrower and/or slick.

    I've read this interesting thread: http://www.cyclechat.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=4781 but still wonder:
    - Are slicks completely useless on paths (I mean dry and good quality paths!)?
    - Is there much difference between 35mm and say 28mm? (on road and on paths)
    - What ideal tyre would you recommend for my 'hybrid' usage?

    Thanks a lot, I feel I begin to become completely addicted to cycling, and it is in part your fault :-)
     
  2. domtyler

    domtyler Über Member

    Hi Nick and welcome to the board. :smile:

    What is the matter with the tyres that you have? They seem fairly decent and well suited to your style of riding from what I can see.
     
  3. OP
    OP
    Nick1979

    Nick1979 New Member

    Location:
    London (SW11)
    Well there is nothing really wrong with my tyres, but as it's not really practical to try out lots of tyres, I ask here out of curiosity, and in case there is something 'better' :biggrin:
     
  4. Milo

    Milo Veteran

    Location:
    Melksham, Wilts
    Slicks will work fine on light gravel paths sustrans paths, by ways and the like.
    However you wont have so much grip I have found.
    I have a ALU road bike and regularly use it on light off road paths just not at full pelt obviously.
    If your dead keen on changing your tyres I would go for scwalbe marathons bullet proof (to a certain extent) and semi slick so nice and grippy on off road paths.
     
  5. Cheddar George

    Cheddar George oober member

    Location:
    Location: Location
    Hello Nick,

    I also have a Trek 7200, about 2 years old with the same tyres as you. The Bontrager 35mm are fine, as with any other tyre just keep them inflated to the correct pressure.
    The downside to cycling is that however much you spend there is always a better bike/component out there.
     
  6. OP
    OP
    Nick1979

    Nick1979 New Member

    Location:
    London (SW11)
    OK, I think I will stick to my stock Bontrager for now, but will keep on eye on those Marathons if the need arises, they seem to be quite liked on the forum!

    What about the influence of width on riding? Is something a bit narrower still ok on light trails or is it exclusively for road?

    BTW, what is a 'sustrans path'?
     
  7. domtyler

    domtyler Über Member

    Nick, the more air in your tyres, the comfier you will be. 23mm tyres at 120psi on a bumpy canal path is going to be murder. I am getting the feeling that you would like to try riding a fast road bike?
     
  8. Mister Paul

    Mister Paul Honky

    Location:
    North Somerset
  9. Paulus

    Paulus Getting older by the minute

    Location:
    Barnet,
    I would say that you could possibly go down as far as a 28mm tyre without losing any comfort for the types of rides you describe. They will roll a lot better on roads/ paths and will still be ok on canal paths and some of the rougher Sustrans routes. Sustrans is a charity that turns old railway lines into cycleways and footpaths with the aim of getting traffic free routes between tows and cities. See here.

    http://www.sustrans.org.uk/
     
  10. OP
    OP
    Nick1979

    Nick1979 New Member

    Location:
    London (SW11)
    Thanks guys! I might buy a pair of 28mm then to compare. As I figured out the other day, it's quite easy to change the tyres anyway (fixed my first p*cture :-) ). The "Satellite Elite Hardcase" and Marathons both seem ok.

    Thanks for the link to sustrans, these guys do an amazing job!
     
  11. Milo

    Milo Veteran

    Location:
    Melksham, Wilts
    If only they relised half inch gravel does not provide much grip...
     
  12. Lone Rider

    Lone Rider Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Costa Daurada
    Since I fitted Marathon + 10 moths ago I haven't had any more punctures, and they have been used on stony trails.
     
  13. HJ

    HJ Cycling in Scotland

    Location:
    Auld Reekie
    Personally I use Conti GatorSkins 700 x 28 for the sort of riding you describe, they are great if you keep well pumped up. The side walls are a wee bit vulnerable if you ride over railway ballast type surfaces because they not designed for such use. In that respect Schwalbe Marathons are a better bet as they have stronger side walls, but this also means they are heavier, have greater rolling resistance and are therefore slower.

    A 'sustrans path' is one that has been designed and built by Sustrans "the UK's leading sustainable transport charity", but is sometimes used as a generic term for an off road cycle path.

    Hope that helps.