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Thread: R3 Tires

  1. #1
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    R3 Tires

    This years Madones have Bontrager R3 tires. They are supposed to be light, puncture resistant with low rolling resistance. What has been your experiences with this tire? Is it a keeper?

  2. #2
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    I went out on a training ride a week and a half ago with another guy, and he was on his new Madone. It was his first ride. The roads here in SE Missouri have some chat on them that is used for snow melt purposes, so not the greatest surface, but I ride with it all the time. He had a flat on the rear after about 9 miles. New tube, and we were good to go, it could of happened to anyone! Approx 3 more miles he flatted again on the front! I was riding with my Continental 4000s's with almost 4,000 miles on them and have never had a single flat. This could be just bad luck, but Two flats on first ride prompted him to replace them.

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    I have some R4s with a couple hundred miles on them, and no flats. I'll be real surprised if they hold up as well as my trusty Krylion's have... but they're almost a quarter of a pound lighter, too. Definitely happy with the feel and grip.

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    johntrek5: Was it a 2011 w/R3s... or did it have the Race Lite tires they had been shipping the prior several years?

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    My first impressions of the R3 tire are pretty good. I ran them at 116 psi. At max pressure, 125 they can cut diamonds. They have good grip, comparable to Krylions but have a stiffer sidewall. That is not a problem with the Madone frame. Only time will tell about punctures and tire wear. Considering the light weight, they are a keeper.

    They are new for 2011.

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    I replaced some Michelin Pro Race 2's with R3's. I have 600 miles on them with no flats. They appear to be wearing very well. The kicker is they are light (claimed 185 grams for a 700x23), handle and corner well, and they "sing" on the pavement almost like a quality tubular.

    As an aside, I wouldn't give you the time of day for the previous generation of Bontrager road tires. The new R's are from a new supplier (I believe it's Vittoria.)
    Anyone who believes there are no stupid questions never worked in a bike shop.

  7. #7
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    @MarvinK,
    Yes, they were the new R3 tires, not the older style RXL all weather that was shipped on some of the first 2011 5.2's

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    My R4s made it about 1200 before I started getting flats on the rear and swapped out for R3s. How many miles is everyone else getting out of the R3s?

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    Quote Originally Posted by MarvinK View Post
    My R4s made it about 1200 before I started getting flats on the rear and swapped out for R3s. How many miles is everyone else getting out of the R3s?
    I have about 1800 on mine, I have not had any problems with flats yet.

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    I only got 400 miles on mine, and other than one interesting experience they have been very nice tires. New years day I went on two separate rides a few hrs apart, I filled up my tires to 110 psi on the morning ride and did about 25 miles. Later for the second ride I did not check them and on the ride I hit a pot hole sewer combo and instant double flat. I am a heavier rider but that never happened to me before.

  11. #11
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    I liked mine. They wore the same as any other tire I have used and I felt the rode pretty well. I had one stretch in the summer of last year where I flatted the front twice in 2 days on the same road... Skipped that road for the rest of the year

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    I live about an hour from the nearest LBS, so I usually pick up a couple of sets of tires at a time. I weigh 215 lbs. I ran a set of R3's last fall and got 1,700 miles out of them. I've been on a set of R4's for 500 miles, but I don't think they'll make it much past 1,000. The 3's are definitely a little more durable in my opinion. And the feel is very similar to me.

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    5,100 miles on my Continental 4000s's last year. The rear was shot, but the front is still in good shape! I do not think I will ever mess with Bontrager tires again. Just my opinion, but hard to argue with that kind of mileage.

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    Well that's that, Sunday I went on a ride and after I got home I was looking over the bike and I got a huge gash on my rear tire. Lasted a whole 437 miles.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Adrianinkc View Post
    Well that's that, Sunday I went on a ride and after I got home I was looking over the bike and I got a huge gash on my rear tire. Lasted a whole 437 miles.
    A "huge gash" is not an indicator of a tires wear qualities. You hit a sharp object. There is no reason to think that the gash you have in this tire would not have happened to any other.

    I like my R3's. I used to ride Michelins but I can get the R3's for less $$. I don't miss the Michelin stuff at all.
    Côte du Petit Pas d'Ane - Best climb name ever.

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    I'm curious how the Pro 4 Endurance turn out from Michelin, but so far I like my R3s... low cost, light weight and appear to be durable.

  17. #17
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    I have over 1,000 miles on my front R3. I had to replace the rear after hitting a piece of glass or metal and it cut the sidewall. It was my own dumb fault though. We had historic flooding here and I went for a ride the next day. Debris everywhere.

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    Replaced my R1's on my Trek bike which are over 300 grams per tire. Way too heavy and they did not roll well. The R3 tires are much lighter and have 120 TPI over the 60 TPI on the R1 and R2. The R3's roll much better on the road too. I chose them over the Continental 4000's to see how Trek's favorite brand held up against the 4000's. So far so good; I will report back after throwing a lot more miles on them.

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    I want to give one more observation on the R3's after throwing about another 150 miles on them. The Cont Prix's on my other bike has a higher rolling resistence compared to the R3's. I feel there is a little less effort in climbing compared to the Cont's. Really enjoying these tires and I found they made more of an improvement on my bike compared to updating other components on the bike.

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