Tyres - should I change from 25 to 23s??

rodgers73
rodgers73 Posts: 2,626
edited June 2011 in Road beginners
My Specialized Secteur Sport that I bought last autumn came with 25mm tyres fitted. At both of the sportives I have done this year almost all other riders seemed to be on 23s.

Is it worth changing over?

I use the bike for commuting, weekend rides, sportives etc etc and I'm quite happy with it. I'm just wondering if using 23s will improve my pace, or just leave me with more punctures to worry about?

Comments

  • alfablue
    alfablue Posts: 8,497
    25's are probably more suitable for the mixed riding you do, they will certainly be more comfortable, and in the real world (i.e. not ultra smooth tarmac) they probably offer lower rolling resistance than narrower ones (see Schwalbe UK technical information). You should also be more immune to punctures. The downsides will be weight (negligible) and aero (negligible). Your pace won't improve if you are knackered because of a harsh ride.
  • CyclingBantam
    CyclingBantam Posts: 1,299
    I have only ridden on 23's. I can't imagine there is that much difference to be honest.

    I would wait until your 25's need replacing, then get some 23's. If they feel better, great, if not you can always go back to 25's when they need replacing.

    I always find, so long as I keep the tyre pressure up I have no issues.
  • Monty Dog
    Monty Dog Posts: 20,614
    Fact the same model of tyre, the 25mm vs the 23mm will be faster, handle better, be more comfortable and probably puncture less - aerodynamics don't even factor - it's only tradition and cod-science that make people believe narrower tyres are quicker.
    Make mine an Italian, with Campagnolo on the side..
  • simon_e
    simon_e Posts: 1,706
    Monty Dog wrote:
    Fact the same model of tyre, the 25mm vs the 23mm will be faster, handle better, be more comfortable and probably puncture less - aerodynamics don't even factor - it's only tradition and cod-science that make people believe narrower tyres are quicker.
    What he said.
    Aspire not to have more, but to be more.
  • desweller
    desweller Posts: 5,175
    In real terms though, chances are you won't notice a damn bit of difference.
    - - - - - - - - - -
    On Strava.{/url}
  • chrishd883
    chrishd883 Posts: 159
    There can noticeable differences between different tyres
    The ultimate difference would be between say Pro 3's and Scwalbe Marathon+ tyres!?!?!

    But 25mm v 23mm - nothing!

    If your current tyres aren't giving you any problems (regular punctures, etc) then wait until they need replacing and try 23's then.
  • nferrar
    nferrar Posts: 2,511
    I'm switching to 25's from 23's next set, marginal weight increase and hopefully a tiny bit more comfort, I doubt there's much in it though. What make/model of tyres are you currently running? If they came with the bike then they might be on the budget end so just changing model rather than width might be a lot more noticeable.
  • Rob Somerset
    Rob Somerset Posts: 127
    I recently swapped from the 25s that came with the bike to 23s. In terms of speed its pointless. I did notice that you get a slightly rougher ride with the 23s. The plus point for me was that the 25s wouldnt allow me to drop out the wheels with the tyres fully inflated as they didnt clear the brake ( this may be ok when the brakes shoes are worn a bit)
    Rob
    Hills do make I sweat a lot
  • niblue
    niblue Posts: 1,387
    I've got 25mm tyres on one of my road bikes and 23mm on the other - can't say that I notice all that much of a difference (the bike with 25mm tyres is more comfortable and some of that might be tyre related), certaintly there doesn't appear to be a noticeable speed difference in the rides I do.
  • simon_e
    simon_e Posts: 1,706
    Rob, did you flick the brake QR? It should move the pads out enough to clear 25mm tyres, though it depends on how much clearance you have between the pads and rims in the first place.

    Michelin and Schwalbe recommend lower pressures for wider tyres, which will also improve comfort.
    http://www.schwalbetires.com/tech_info/ ... n_pressure
    Michelin PDF

    I have used 28, 25 and 23mm on the same bike (though not the same tyre model) and not noticed much difference, except that the 23s certainly transmit more road vibes at the same kind of pressures.
    Aspire not to have more, but to be more.
  • dodgy
    dodgy Posts: 2,890
    If you can't decide, choose Conti 24mm :wink:
  • keef66
    keef66 Posts: 13,123
    Some cheaper brake calipers don't have a QR and on some systems it's at the lever.

    I came from mtb to road so I specced 25s on my bike and think they look skinny! (Conti 4 seasons; been very impressed with them)
    Toying with the idea of some 28s for longer rides where comfort is more of an issue.
  • rodgers73
    rodgers73 Posts: 2,626
    I recently swapped from the 25s that came with the bike to 23s. In terms of speed its pointless. I did notice that you get a slightly rougher ride with the 23s. The plus point for me was that the 25s wouldnt allow me to drop out the wheels with the tyres fully inflated as they didnt clear the brake ( this may be ok when the brakes shoes are worn a bit)
    Rob


    Yes, I get the same trouble with mine. Driving a KA means the front wheel has to come off anytime I transport it anywhere and that means deflating and reinflating the tyre too :?

    I'm not sure what brand tyres I've got on there, but I'd guess I've done about 1000 miles on them and they're fine in terms of punctures, tread etc.
  • keef66
    keef66 Posts: 13,123
    You sure your brakes have no QRs??
  • chrishd883
    chrishd883 Posts: 159
    keef66 - "You sure your brakes have no QRs??"

    Planet X brakes don't have a QR
    And neither do Campagnolo brakes - where the QR is built into the lever.
  • rodgers73
    rodgers73 Posts: 2,626
    Mine do, but that still isnt enough clearance to get them out.
  • chrishd883
    chrishd883 Posts: 159
    You could adjust the brakes so that there is a little more slack in the cable.
    As long as you can't pull the levers back to the bars!

    Although, having said that I do like my brakes set up with small clearances.
  • keef66
    keef66 Posts: 13,123
    Could you set up the brakes with the cable adjusters screwed out a bit, so that screwing them in and using the QR opens up the caliper sufficiently?

    Won't look particularly tidy, but it's got to be easier than deflating / reinflating the tyre, no?