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Upgrading tyres on a TDF - Which to get?

robjwoodrobjwood Posts: 21
edited November 2012 in Road beginners
Title says it all really! Had the bike for a week and already had my first puncture! Based on reviews this was going to happen sooner or later.

Are there any decent, hardwearing tyres that'll be good for winter? I've heard a lot of good things about Continental GatorSkin's. Anyone have any better options?


  • owenlarsowenlars Posts: 719
    As you say Gatorskins or if you can afford a bit extra Gatorskin Hardshells.

    If you want absolute puncture protection Schwalbe Marathon Plus. These do, however, feel a little wooden.
  • TakeTurnsTakeTurns Posts: 1,075
    edited October 2012
    If you're a hardcore commuter I'd go for Gatorskin Hardshells
  • drlodgedrlodge Posts: 4,824
    Gatorskins offer good puncture protection, I've got them on my bike now, but aren't very grippy in the wet. For that reason, I've got some Conti 4 Seasons 25c tyres to replace them with over the wetter months.
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  • zx6manzx6man Posts: 1,092
    And I think the schwalbe will be a little cheaper.
  • It really depends on what riding you do.

    I have to say, I have been very impressed with my Gatorskins. I have them on my favourite bike; have done since May. No punctures yet. Some people don't get on with them at all. As all-rounder tyres go, based on my experience I'd say they're a good choice; they're not the very heaviest, they're slick, they're puncture resistant and they don't cost the Earth. The Schwalbe Durano is similar but I haven't tried those. You could also try the GP 4 seasons and Gator Hardshell, which cost a bit more.

    If you want ultimate reliability I'd suggest the Marathon Plus - at some point my commuter will get some - but they are significantly heavier. If I could choose between the M+ and the Gatorskin (which at present I can't as my favourite bike still has 27" wheels), I'd opt for the Gatorskin.
  • mouthmouth Posts: 1,195
    Doesn't really matter. Whatever you choose it'll be better than the Kenda POS in there as original.
    The only disability in life is a poor attitude.
  • kentphilkentphil Posts: 479
    +1 for Gatorskins
    1998 Kona Cindercone in singlespeed commute spec
    2013 Cannondale Caadx 1x10
    2004 Giant TCR
  • I think I'm happier to accept the gain in weight. As much as I go for rides my my trusty Strava app trying to beat my own PB, most of what I ride for is getting to work in one piece and improving my fitness a little.

    My bike has 700c x 23c tyres and a Crud RoadRacer Mk2 mudguard set. Is this likely to be fiddly?
  • zx6manzx6man Posts: 1,092
    Mouth wrote:
    Doesn't really matter. Whatever you choose it'll be better than the Kenda POS in there as original.

    Yup, when they swapped mine to the conti ultra sports, I was amazed at the difference.
  • lostboysaintlostboysaint Posts: 4,252
    Changed my miserable OE tyres on my first road bike to Conti Gatorskin Hardshell (23mm) and was very impressed. No puntures in a few thousand km, rolled well. Changed the OE tyres on my latest one from some Chinese faux-tubular things to Conti GP4s 25mm and was even more impressed and STILL no punctures after even more km.

    Go 25mm for the additional comfort (reduce the pressures a bit) without any of the losses.
    Trail fun - Transition Bandit
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  • zx6manzx6man Posts: 1,092
    do the 25's fit on the tdf , I have mudguards on mine too, so reckon they would be a bit tight for me.
  • GatorSkins it is but I have some (silly?) questions to ask:

    1. Am I right in thinking that buying tyres does NOT include the inner tube?
    2. Is it difficult to change a rear tyre with Crud Roadracer Mark 2 mudguards on or will I have to remove these to put the wheel back on?
    3. Is it a waste of money paying to get this work done?
  • 1. Your are right - they don't
    2. No it isn't (you don't have to remove the cruds)
    3. Yes it is
    Sometimes you're the hammer, sometimes you're the nail

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  • Thanks for the concise advice! I think I'm going to try patching the inner tube first (I only commute a mile each way, so I can handle the risk) and see how well that goes.

    I'll definitely be be upgrading the tyres at some point but it feels too soon after only a week or so of ownership. I need to learn all this stuff as well...
  • no probs :-)

    Unfortunately p*nctures are a fact of life and you will get one out on the road at some point so learning how to do it at home is definetly time well spent.

    Oh and when you put the inner tube in the tyre make sure it's inflated a little - it really does help (I'd been cycling for 10+ years and never realised this before someone mentioned it on this forum).

    Also keeping your bike clean and wearing a pair of latex gloves (cheap ones from a DIY store) makes changing the inner tube on a rear wheel a much less messy task.
    Sometimes you're the hammer, sometimes you're the nail

    strava profile
  • Have tried both Gatorskins and Schwalbe Marathons, both of which were really good.

    If you are looking for something with good protection, but is also fast - try the Schwalbe Ultremo - have had them on for 6 months and have found them fast, grippy, good looking and good with punctures. Went on a sportive with a mate who had almost new (cheaper) tyres - he had three punctures and I had none (lots of others had punctures all the way with flints washed into the road by heavy rain). Maybe just lucky, but they certainly don't seem to have compromised on puncture protection to make them quick.

    So, depends on where you're riding - if you're doing city riding with lots of broken glass around then go for something bullet-proof, but if it is more rural then try the Ultremos.
  • elderoneelderone Posts: 1,410
    Punctures can happen on the road at any time,I,ve had punctures in my car tyres, in my motorcycle tyres,so i wont be surprised to get one in a bicycle tyre.
    Seems a waste to replace new tyres because of one puncture,which wont stop future punctures.
    Dulce et decorum est Pro patria mori
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