Wheels Asia - - // richie porte unchained -

Be Size Wise

In the world of road bikes, for many years 23mm was seen as the ‘best’ tyre size to ride on. How­ever, re­search has proven that 25 or even 28mm can be just as ef­fec­tive with rolling speed, but far more for­giv­ing on the road, due to the in­crease in air vol­ume the ex­tra width gives. There’s also a dif­fer­ence in opin­ion in the slick ver­sus grooved tyre de­bate. As the con­tact patch of a road bike tyre is about the size of a large postage stamp, what it comes down to is pres­sure rather than tread pat­tern.

Horses For Cour­ses

De­cide what you want from your tyres – less weight, more dura­bil­ity or re­duced costs – as giv­ing you all three in one is im­pos­si­ble. When look­ing for a com­mut­ing tyre, buy­ing cheap pretty much al­ways means buy­ing twice. If you’re get­ting a fair few miles in on a daily ba­sis – and don’t want the has­sle of hav­ing to fix a punc­ture at the side of the road when you’re al­ready late for work – in­vest in a de­cent set of tyres. Tyres with punc­ture pro­tec­tion built in to the tread com­pound are a good start­ing point.

Length Of Ser­vice

How long a tyre should last is an im­pos­si­ble ques­tion to an­swer. Ev­ery­one rides dif­fer­ently, so a pair of riders who cover the same dis­tance, rid­ing the same road on the same tyre, will still have dif­fer­ent ex­pe­ri­ences. One can brake later, putting ad­di­tional stress on the tyre. One rider can weigh more, caus­ing a dif­fer­ence in wear.

What’s Fastest?

If you’ve al­ways rid­den a 23mm tyre, and swap to 25 or 28mm, the im­pact will vary slightly, but they will achieve the same speed. Per­for­mance won’t dra­mat­i­cally dif­fer, but you may feel that you’re rid­ing faster, be­cause ev­ery­thing feels smoother. Com­fort will be the most no­tice­able dif­fer­ence due to the in­creased vol­ume of the tyre.

How Wrong Can You Be?

The best ex­am­ple is some­one rid­ing to work on a heavy knob­bly tyre. They are wast­ing a lot of ef­fort due to the tyre’s in­creased rolling re­sis­tance. Swap­ping to a slick tread pat­tern would save en­ergy by dra­mat­i­cally re­duc­ing the rolling re­sis­tance. Talk to your lo­cal stock­ist and draw from their ex­pe­ri­ence to gain a bet­ter un­der­stand­ing of what tyres best suit the type of rid­ing you do. And, al­ways check your tyre pres­sures. be­fore you go rid­ing…

Stephen Robinson, from Maxxis bike tyres, ex­plains what you should be look­ing for in your rub­ber

Slick or grooved? 25 or 28mm? Match your rub­ber to your rid­ing

Just re­mem­ber to take them out

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