Bike tires

tires Fixes, Reviews & Guides

Embedded thumbnail for DIY: Change a tire without tire levers

DIY: Change a tire without tire levers

Push the Tire Off

There's an easy way to get the tire off without using tire levers. First, put the tire on the ground and start pressing the inside of the bead...

Part tires
Type: Review
Embedded thumbnail for Hutchinson Intensive 2 Road Bike Tire Review

Hutchinson Intensive 2 Road Bike Tire Review

Hutchinson Intensive 2 SE Road Tire

Hutchinson Intensive 2

The Hutchinson Intensive 2 is one of the most popular road tires out there. And with good reason....

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Company: Hutchinson
Type: Review
Embedded thumbnail for WTB EXI Wolf Mountain Bike Tire Review

WTB EXI Wolf Mountain Bike Tire Review

WTB Exiwolf Mountain Bike Tire

EXI Wolf MTB Tire

The WTB Exiwolf TCS Mountain Tire takes the fast-rolling agility of an XC race tire and combines it...

Part tires
Company: WTB
Type: Review
Embedded thumbnail for Mountain Bike Tire Review: Kenda Nevegal DCT Folding Tire

Mountain Bike Tire Review: Kenda Nevegal DCT Folding Tire

Kenga DCT Folding Tire

Consistently voted a winner by Mountain Bike Action Magazine, the Kenda Nevegal DCT SCT Mountain Tire is the ultimate XC performer in all...

Part tires 26 inch
Company: Kenda
Type: Review
Embedded thumbnail for Vredestein Fortezza Senso All Weather Road Tire Review

Vredestein Fortezza Senso All Weather Road Tire Review

Many said it couldn't be done, but Vredestein has actually managed to improve on their flagship Fotezza Tricomp. The impressive new Fortezza Senso All Weather model draws on many proven features,...

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Company: Vredestein
Type: Review
Embedded thumbnail for Vredestein Fortezza Senso SuperLite Road Tire Review

Vredestein Fortezza Senso SuperLite Road Tire Review

With top end, race day performance in mind, Vredestein delivers their Fortezza Senso All Weather SuperLite Road Tire.

Just as with previous versions of their top of the line tires,...

Part tires
Company: Vredestein
Type: Review
Embedded thumbnail for Vredestein Fortezza Senso Xtreme Weather Road Tire Review

Vredestein Fortezza Senso Xtreme Weather Road Tire Review

Enjoy the grip and low rolling resistance you would expect from Vredestein even during extremely cold and wet conditions with the Senso Xtreme Weather Road Tire.

...

Part tires
Company: Vredestein
Type: Review
Embedded thumbnail for Removing Tubeless Tires from a Bicycle Wheel

Removing Tubeless Tires from a Bicycle Wheel

Having proper leverage is actually the least important part of the equation when it comes to removing tight fitting tires, especially tubeless tires. Here are a few tips that should make the job...

Tools tire lever
Type: Repair Tutorial
Embedded thumbnail for Review Michelin Krylion Carbon Road Bike Tire

Review Michelin Krylion Carbon Road Bike Tire

Michelin Krylion Tire

Ideal for racing or long-distance training, the Michelin Krylion Carbon Road Tire combines exceptional durability with superb grip in dry...

Part tires
Company: Michelin
Type: Review
Embedded thumbnail for Maxxis Minion DHR II Tire

Maxxis Minion DHR II Tire

Few tires have the winning history of the Maxxis Minion. The Minion DHR II tire can now be added to that list as it carried Greg Minnaar to his 2012 World Championship title mounted front and rear...

Part tires 26 inch
Company: Maxxis
Type: Review
Embedded thumbnail for Schwalbe Racing Ralph Evo Tire

Schwalbe Racing Ralph Evo Tire

A great cross-country tire must be fast, supple, grippy, and lightweight. It must roll exceptionally well but brake effectively when required. The Schwalbe Racing Ralph EVO tire possesses all...

Part tires
Company: Schwalbe
Type: Review
Embedded thumbnail for Review: Vittoria Cross XL Pro Clincher Tire

Review: Vittoria Cross XL Pro Clincher Tire

Cross XL Pro Clincher Tire

Vittoria's Cross XL Pro Clincher Tire features sharp, tall, widely-spaced knobs on the shoulders to provide confidence during...

Company: Vittoria
Type: Review
Embedded thumbnail for Review: Vittoria Open Corsa CX III Clincher Tire

Review: Vittoria Open Corsa CX III Clincher Tire

Vittoria's fastest clincher. The Open Corsa CX pairs a traditional construction with innovative technology.

Vittoria Open Corsa CX III Clincher Tire

The...

Company: Vittoria
Type: Review
Embedded thumbnail for Continental Grand Prix 4000 S II 700c Road Tire Review

Continental Grand Prix 4000 S II 700c Road Tire Review

With the Continental Grand Prix 4000 S II, the last compromise really has been eliminated—Conti's magic Black Chili performance tires are now available with bold, bright sidewall color options, so...

Company: Continental
Type: Review
Embedded thumbnail for Bike Tube Valve Stem Extender Installation

Bike Tube Valve Stem Extender Installation

Valve Stem Extension Tutorial:

The only tool you’re going to need to accomplish this extension installation is a pair of needle nose pliers and the tire of choice or inner tube if it has a...

Part tires
Company: Continental
Type: Repair Tutorial
Embedded thumbnail for Remove a Tubular Tire and Excess Glue from Zipp Rims

Remove a Tubular Tire and Excess Glue from Zipp Rims

This video will show you how to remove a tubular tire and how to remove the excess glue from the rim bed afterwards.

There are two ways to remove the tire from your rim. If you do not plan...

Part tires wheels
Company: Zipp
Type: Repair Tutorial
Embedded thumbnail for Fulcrum Racing Zero Clincher Road Bicycle Wheelset Review

Fulcrum Racing Zero Clincher Road Bicycle Wheelset Review

Fulcrum wheels have been used to win championships all over the world, and Fulcrum has been working with the top racing teams to make their wheels lighter, stiffer, faster, and smoother.

...

Company: Fulcrum
Type: Review
Embedded thumbnail for Great Road Bike Tire- Continental Grand Prix 4000 S II Review

Great Road Bike Tire- Continental Grand Prix 4000 S II Review

With the Continental Grand Prix 4000 S II, the last compromise really has been eliminated—Conti's magic Black Chili performance tires are now available with bold, bright sidewall color options, so...

Part tires
Company: Continental
Type: Review
Embedded thumbnail for How to Fix a Flat Tire with a Bike Patch Kit

How to Fix a Flat Tire with a Bike Patch Kit

 Patching a bike’s tire inner tube is much easier and faster than it sounds.

Step 1: Remove the flat tube from the tire
Remove the flat inner tube from the tire.

...

Part tires tubes
Type: Repair Tutorial
Embedded thumbnail for DIY How to Make Your Own Mountain Bike Tire with Studs for Winter Ice and Snow

DIY How to Make Your Own Mountain Bike Tire with Studs for Winter Ice and Snow

Today I'm going to show you how to take a mountain bike tire like this and turn it into a gnarly tire like this. You only need a few simple tools and a bunch of wood ...

Type: Repair Tutorial

"I'd definitely pose nude again. No qualms. I actually just had my breasts done again. Just updated, like new tires" - Jessica Hahn

Bike tire cityscape

Tires are certainly contenders for the most critical components to the performance of a bicycle. They provide suspension and traction that are critical to propelling and controlling the ride. Besides air drag (which tires greatly affect aerodynamics), ground resistance is the biggest factor that robs power from the rider.

Tires are manufactured in a plethora of tread styles, sizes, and rubber composites that are built for any purpose. Different methods to attach a tire to the rim exist, some using wired beads that clinch inside the rim, and others involve adhesives. The diameter of the tire must match the diameter of the rim, but the width of the tire varies within the limits set by the rim.

A tire consists of a few  micro layers of rubber composites between the inner tube and the riding surface. They fit inside the rim using a bead, or a bulky trim to remain held inside the rim when the inner tube is pressurized. The tread is the tire bottom, built to contact the riding surface. The underlying layer and the sidewall are sometimes referred to as the casing.

Physics 101: Inflation affects many key factors of a tire. When slightly under inflated, the tire is saggy and soft. It grips the riding surface well, and acts as a nice fluffy cushion. If slightly overinflated, the tire makes less contact with the ground. This means less resistance (and therefore traction), but the rider can go faster with greater efficiency. Ambient air temperature, and changes in altitude at different locations have a huge barometric effects on the tire pressure. Hot tire = more inflated, cold tire = more deflated. React accordingly.  

 

Brand-spanking new tires are sweet. Everybody loves that new tire smell, and the curiosity of those funny looking "sprues" makes everyone feel like a kid again.

New bike tire

Many low-end rubber composite mountain and road tires can be purchased for less than $20. Fresh tread is fresh tread. That being said, according to my research, cheap tires don't win championships. 

For the rider of any cycle looking to up their game, there are many options. Tire material composition and tread pattern are factors that affect the pricing, as both affect time and difficulty of manufacturing. 

Most tires fall under $250/tire on Amazon.com for both mountain and road bikes. The market is huge with any tread pattern and size imaginable.These tires are specially designed by world-class, competitive tire companies. 

New road tire

Even nicer tires are about $750, and if you just hit the jackpot, some new tires can be well over $1,500. Knock yourself out!

 

Whether you have a blowout or are just over trusting your life in those bald, kinda round things, replacing a tire is easy business. It requires almost no special tools, and can be done in about 15 minutes.

  1. Remove the wheel

Front wheel removal

  1. Deflate the tire by pressing the valve stem

pressing valve stem

  1. Pry the tire bead off one side with several tire levers. The tire should be loose and now come easily off the rim.

tire levers

  1. Analyze both the tire and the tube to determine the cause of the flat. It could have been a puncture, or perhaps something pinched the tube that flattened it. Either way, now would be a good time to replace the tube if you plan on doing so.
  2. On the wall will be a small arrow that signifies the direction of rotation of the tire. With that in mind, slide one side back onto the rim in the correct direction.

rotation arrow

  1. Place the valve stem through the assigned hole in the rim. Put a little air in the new, flat inner tube, and install it in the tire entirely. Double check that no piece of the tube will be pinched.

valve stem installation

tube installation

  1. Starting with your hands, roll the outside bead to the inside of the rim. When you get 80% around the tire, it will become too difficult, and it will be necessary to use tire levers to heave the rest of the tire bead inside the rim 100%.

Heaving the tire over

  1. Double check that the tube isn't sticking out anywhere, and it is now safe to inflate it to the specifications set on the sidewall of the tire.
  2. Re-install the wheel wearing its snazzy new tire.

reinstalling the front tire

From the beginning of cycling, tires have been sized using many different measurements. This is due to so tire companies throughout the world creating their own systems. Some systems used similar scales, but for different dimensions, further adding to the confusion! Luckily our good friends the ISO (International Standardization Organization) are here to save the day. 

Once upon a time a situation arose where companies were trying to outcompete one another producing faster and lighter tires. Width measurements were falsely advertised, eventually leading to poor performing tires. This arrogance has subsided to the honest and accountable tire measurements in the modern age.

The width of a tire can also be confusing. A tire could be marked at 26 x 1.75 and another could be 26 x 1 3/4. These width measurements have different origins and are not interchangeable. If your tire's width is written a fraction, assume it will require a tire with the exact fraction to match. Likewise with the decimal measurement.

The diameter determines what rim the tire will fit on in inches (26", 27" etc) or in millimeters (650, 700c etc). Some riders preferred a thinner, "middleweight tire" to fit on the same rim. These tires could be marked at 26", but in reality might only be 25 5/8".

Bead seat diameter labeled

The ISO has persisted that the two important measurements are:

  • Width - the distance between the beads across the tire tread, also known as the inner rim width. There can be differences in tire width, and still function as a viable replacement. Keep in mind however that too wide of a tire will wear the sidewalls faster, and a tire on the narrower side will expose the rim to debris damaging it while riding. As a general advisory, keep the width within a range of 1.45/2.0 times the inner rim width.
  • Bead Seat Diameter (BSD) - Distance from one side of the bead to the other (180o around the tire). This is the most critical measurement of all. If the Bead Seat Diameter matches, the tire will fit. If this number doesn't match, the tire won't fit. 
                            Common Fractional and Decimal Tire Sizes
Size ISO Applications
29 inch 622mm General 700c wide tires
28 x 1 1/2" 635mm English, Dutch, Chinese, and Indian rod-brake roadsters
28 x 1 1/4" 622mm Northern European designation for 700c tires
27 x anything 630mm Older road bikes
26 x 1 (650c) 571mm Triathlon, time trial, and small road bikes
26 x 1 3/8" 597mm Schwinn lightweights
28 x decimal 622mm Some German tire companies use this for 700c tires
26 x 1.00 through 2.3 559mm Most mountain bikes and cruisers
26 x 1.25 599mm Old US lightweights
26 x 1.375 599mm Old US lightweights
20 x 1.5 through 2.0 x 2.125 406mm Most BMX, folding bikes, trailers, recumbents

 

The French sizing system uses letters to designate relative widths. A is narrow, D is wide.

                                    Common French Tire Sizes
Size ISO Applications
700 A 642mm Obsolete
700 B 635mm Rod-brake roadsters
700 C 622mm Road bikes, hybrids, "29 inch" mountain bikes
650 A 590mm French equivalent of the 26 x 1 3/8 for Italian high performance bikes
650 B 584mm Utility bikes, tandems, loaded touring bikes, and some older Schwinn and Raleigh mountain bikes.
650 C 571mm Triathlon, time trial, and high performance road bikes