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Thread: Tire testing

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    Tire testing

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    Great article, dog.

    Thanks for posting it.

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    Thanks. I've always been skeptical of the steel drum with diamond plate. None of the roads I ride on are round diamond plate.
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    Great post, thanks!
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    Quote Originally Posted by velodog View Post
    Jan Heine's thoughts
    We all owe Jan Heine and his crew a debt of gratitude for his diligence and intelligence in tire testing. We're on 25s and bigger today largely because of his work.

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    Good article. I always wondered about those test results on www.bicyclerollingresistance.com which fly in the face of recent findings on pressure and rolling resistance.
    "With bicycles in particular, you need to separate between what's merely true and what's important."-- DCGriz, RBR.

    “Statistics are like bikinis. What they reveal is suggestive, but what they conceal is vital.” -- Aaron Levenstein



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    [QUOTE=Lombard;5232897]Good article.

    Bad phone - didn't intend to post reply.
    Last edited by crit_boy; 05-07-2018 at 05:45 PM.

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    I think Jan's work is very provocative and I agree that he's a large part of why we continue to run larger and softer tires. It gets people thinking/rethinking.

    But I do find that, due to his focus on testing in the real world, his tests don't (can't?) truly isolate variables and they end up reading like grade-school science projects. There's a reason for test labs and their drums and diamond plates.

    That all said, while I am skeptical of the "science", I am grateful for the perspective. I ride Compass 700x44 tires and absolutely love them. And they don't feel any slower than my 700x28 road bike tires on the local hill ride -- at least uphill. (They do feel a little slower on fast group rides, though.)

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    Quote Originally Posted by pushstart View Post
    That all said, while I am skeptical of the "science", I am grateful for the perspective. I ride Compass 700x44 tires and absolutely love them. And they don't feel any slower than my 700x28 road bike tires on the local hill ride -- at least uphill. (They do feel a little slower on fast group rides, though.)
    Do you have the standard casings or extralight? Have you had any punctures or sidewall cuts?
    "With bicycles in particular, you need to separate between what's merely true and what's important."-- DCGriz, RBR.

    “Statistics are like bikinis. What they reveal is suggestive, but what they conceal is vital.” -- Aaron Levenstein



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    Quote Originally Posted by Lombard View Post
    Do you have the standard casings or extralight? Have you had any punctures or sidewall cuts?
    Right now I am running the Extralight casing with these Snoqualmie Pass tires. I am using them tubeless. I have not ridden these much (hardly at all) off-road. I am a little nervous about cuts, but so far have not had any. Tubeless helps; my kids like to leave thumbtacks lying around the basement apparently!

    Previously, I had been using the Barlow Pass (38mm) tires in standard casing for a few months. And I did ride those on gravel a few times (probably a total of 100-150 pure gravel miles) and would not hesitate to do that more. No flats. Also tubeless. I did have a thorn sticking out of the sidewall at one point; sealant sealed it fine when I pulled it out.

    I will get braver with the extralight casing tires, though for actual single-track I don't think these tires offer enough grip. For gravel -- all but loose uphill gravel, anyway -- they seem great.

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    Quote Originally Posted by pushstart View Post
    Right now I am running the Extralight casing with these Snoqualmie Pass tires. I am using them tubeless. I have not ridden these much (hardly at all) off-road. I am a little nervous about cuts, but so far have not had any. Tubeless helps; my kids like to leave thumbtacks lying around the basement apparently!

    Previously, I had been using the Barlow Pass (38mm) tires in standard casing for a few months. And I did ride those on gravel a few times (probably a total of 100-150 pure gravel miles) and would not hesitate to do that more. No flats. Also tubeless. I did have a thorn sticking out of the sidewall at one point; sealant sealed it fine when I pulled it out.

    I will get braver with the extralight casing tires, though for actual single-track I don't think these tires offer enough grip. For gravel -- all but loose uphill gravel, anyway -- they seem great.
    Well these sure are tempting for my gravel bike. The stated clearance is for 700x40 tires, but after trying those, it is pretty obvious there is room for wider. Maybe not 44, but definitely 42.
    "With bicycles in particular, you need to separate between what's merely true and what's important."-- DCGriz, RBR.

    “Statistics are like bikinis. What they reveal is suggestive, but what they conceal is vital.” -- Aaron Levenstein



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    Quote Originally Posted by Lombard View Post
    Do you have the standard casings or extralight? Have you had any punctures or sidewall cuts?
    I've been running BSP standard casings for the last 14,000 miles and haven't had a sidewall cut, and only one puncture. I pushed one tire to 8000 miles, until I saw cord, and it never flatted. All together I think that I've been on 5 tires, the two I'm riding now and three that have been retired. At about 4000 miles I rotate front to rear and replace front.

    I'm running tubes and have some gravel miles, but not many.
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    Quote Originally Posted by pushstart View Post
    Right now I am running the Extralight casing with these Snoqualmie Pass tires. I am using them tubeless. I have not ridden these much (hardly at all) off-road. I am a little nervous about cuts, but so far have not had any. Tubeless helps; my kids like to leave thumbtacks lying around the basement apparently!

    Previously, I had been using the Barlow Pass (38mm) tires in standard casing for a few months. And I did ride those on gravel a few times (probably a total of 100-150 pure gravel miles) and would not hesitate to do that more. No flats. Also tubeless. I did have a thorn sticking out of the sidewall at one point; sealant sealed it fine when I pulled it out.

    I will get braver with the extralight casing tires, though for actual single-track I don't think these tires offer enough grip. For gravel -- all but loose uphill gravel, anyway -- they seem great.https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20180511/bd6c031ea5c15c54d9d15bf42df35908.jpg[/IMG]
    Although you've run 38 standard and 44 ultralight can you comment on the ride quality of standard as compared to the ultralights? I've only ridden the standards and am interested to know if you think the ride quality is worth the price difference?
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    Quote Originally Posted by velodog View Post
    Although you've run 38 standard and 44 ultralight can you comment on the ride quality of standard as compared to the ultralights? I've only ridden the standards and am interested to know if you think the ride quality is worth the price difference?
    I found my set of SP ultralight tires on eBay lightly used for less than half price, which seemed worth the gamble. It is hard because a few variables changed (larger tires, new wheels too). At first I remember thinking that they didn't feel hugely different from the 38mm standard-casing BPs. I think that upon further miles they are different/softer/nicer, but I am not sure they are better enough to justify the price increase and the potential decrease in punctures resistance (at least sidewalls). For road riding perhaps the sidewall is not such a concern, so for road-only maybe that would be out of the equation and tip the scale in favor of the ultralight despite the price.

    Definitely keep tabs on eBay, though; these tires come up from time to time.

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    Quote Originally Posted by pushstart View Post
    I found my set of SP ultralight tires on eBay lightly used for less than half price, which seemed worth the gamble. It is hard because a few variables changed (larger tires, new wheels too). At first I remember thinking that they didn't feel hugely different from the 38mm standard-casing BPs. I think that upon further miles they are different/softer/nicer, but I am not sure they are better enough to justify the price increase and the potential decrease in punctures resistance (at least sidewalls). For road riding perhaps the sidewall is not such a concern, so for road-only maybe that would be out of the equation and tip the scale in favor of the ultralight despite the price.

    Definitely keep tabs on eBay, though; these tires come up from time to time.
    Thanks.

    I've been quite happy with the standards and have been talking myself out of spending the extra cash on the UL's, but hearing that you felt a difference has me tipping towards trying them. I've got a few standards that I'll need to use first tho. Maybe, like you mentioned, I'll look for some used ones to help me decide.
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    Quote Originally Posted by velodog View Post
    Thanks.

    I've been quite happy with the standards and have been talking myself out of spending the extra cash on the UL's, but hearing that you felt a difference has me tipping towards trying them. I've got a few standards that I'll need to use first tho. Maybe, like you mentioned, I'll look for some used ones to help me decide.
    It's more the vulnerable sidewalls than price that have be hesitant to try the ULs. Less of an issue with road riding, but all you have to do is hit an unavoidable pothole and those will probably cut. I've seen race tires cut that way.
    "With bicycles in particular, you need to separate between what's merely true and what's important."-- DCGriz, RBR.

    “Statistics are like bikinis. What they reveal is suggestive, but what they conceal is vital.” -- Aaron Levenstein



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    Quote Originally Posted by Lombard View Post
    It's more the vulnerable sidewalls than price that have be hesitant to try the ULs. Less of an issue with road riding, but all you have to do is hit an unavoidable pothole and those will probably cut. I've seen race tires cut that way.
    I'm not too worried about sidewall cuts as most of my riding has been road and high volume, low pressure seems to ward off damage to the sidewalls. My experience with the BSP's has shown this to be true with lack of cuts in the tread of the tire. I've always found cuts in the treads of lower volume tires(25mm & less) but I only remember finding one, and it was small, in my BSP tires.

    And while I know that sidewalls are more susceptible to cuts I have enough faith in high volume/low pressure to not be too concerned. Also, there seems to be a number of gravel riders that are successfully using Compass tires.
    Too old to ride plastic

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    Yeah, I was really concerned at first with even the standard casing, having this impression that these are fragile tires. To be fair, most of my miles are on nice pavement (commute is mostly paved multi-use trail) but as confidence increased I have taken those BPs onto mixed surface routes and dedicated gravel rides without any issues. So far this hasn't been for a *race* which means I have generally been riding more carefully than what would happen during a race, but at 175-180lbs, I am not exactly lightweight. I do plan to use them (BPs standard casing, probably) for my next gravel race since it is nice hard pack road surfaces. I would not use these for something like Iron Cross or Hilly Billy Roubaix which have quite rocky roads and where you need a bit of traction on looser surfaces.

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    Quote Originally Posted by velodog View Post
    I'm not too worried about sidewall cuts as most of my riding has been road and high volume, low pressure seems to ward off damage to the sidewalls.
    This is true to some degree. I also read in one of the gravel publications that this trend of "wider is better" actually makes the sidewalls more vulnerable to sidewall cuts from sharp pebbles. They recommended no wider than 21mm internal width rims for gravel. I presume that is given a tire width in the 32-40mm range.

    Quote Originally Posted by velodog View Post
    My experience with the BSP's has shown this to be true with lack of cuts in the tread of the tire. I've always found cuts in the treads of lower volume tires(25mm & less) but I only remember finding one, and it was small, in my BSP tires.
    Not to seem ignorant, but what is BSP and BP?

    Quote Originally Posted by velodog View Post
    And while I know that sidewalls are more susceptible to cuts I have enough faith in high volume/low pressure to not be too concerned. Also, there seems to be a number of gravel riders that are successfully using Compass tires.
    This is good to know. I just bought a set of Challenge Strada Biancas in 700x36. I plan to use those once I build up my new wheels with H+ Son Hydras. I was temped to get the open tubular version (260 TPI), but saw that Challenge had some issues with delamination with their open tubulars. So I ended up going with the vulcanized version which are still 120 TPI

    BTW, I notice Compass doesn't state any TPI information. Does anybody know what these are?
    "With bicycles in particular, you need to separate between what's merely true and what's important."-- DCGriz, RBR.

    “Statistics are like bikinis. What they reveal is suggestive, but what they conceal is vital.” -- Aaron Levenstein



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    Quote Originally Posted by Lombard View Post
    This is true to some degree. I also read in one of the gravel publications that this trend of "wider is better" actually makes the sidewalls more vulnerable to sidewall cuts from sharp pebbles. They recommended no wider than 21mm internal width rims for gravel. I presume that is given a tire width in the 32-40mm range.



    Not to seem ignorant, but what is BSP and BP?



    This is good to know. I just bought a set of Challenge Strada Biancas in 700x36. I plan to use those once I build up my new wheels with H+ Son Hydras. I was temped to get the open tubular version (260 TPI), but saw that Challenge had some issues with delamination with their open tubulars. So I ended up going with the vulcanized version which are still 120 TPI

    BTW, I notice Compass doesn't state any TPI information. Does anybody know what these are?
    BSP=Baby Shoe Pass 650b/42mm

    Heine does keep TPI close to the vest. His take seems to be that the openness of the weave has as much to do, or more, than the thread count. I dunno, but I've been happy with the tires.

    I've recently put a set of Stampede Pass(700c/32mm) standard tires on my wifes bike and she's happy with those also. She tends to like her tires pumped up more than necessary, tho I'm trying to change her thinking about that.

    https://janheine.wordpress.com/2015/...e-performance/

    From the article...

    Panaracer, who makes our Compass tires, offers a 120 TPI casing. However, they found that if they use the same super-fine threads, but space them out a little further, they get an even more supple, and even faster, tire. So the Compass Extralight tires use that casing, which only has 90 TPI.

    Too old to ride plastic

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    Quote Originally Posted by pushstart View Post
    I think Jan's work is very provocative and I agree that he's a large part of why we continue to run larger and softer tires. It gets people thinking/rethinking.

    But I do find that, due to his focus on testing in the real world, his tests don't (can't?) truly isolate variables and they end up reading like grade-school science projects. There's a reason for test labs and their drums and diamond plates.

    That all said, while I am skeptical of the "science", I am grateful for the perspective. I ride Compass 700x44 tires and absolutely love them. And they don't feel any slower than my 700x28 road bike tires on the local hill ride -- at least uphill. (They do feel a little slower on fast group rides, though.)
    You can be as sceptical as you want. The DATA bear out the Bicycle Quarterly testing, and if it didn't, we wouldn't have seen the massive switch to wider tires that has taken place over the past 5 years. Bicycling is, and always has been full of myths and misconceptions based on "intuition" that is not supported by evidence. Jan is one of the few people out there who actually brings logic and evidence to the problem.

    Your statement about drum testing and dimple plates totally misses the points made in the article. They emphasize hysterisis losses and therefore point in the wrong direction. On road testing proves this. If we relied on drums only, we would all still be riding 19 mm tires.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kerry Irons View Post
    Your statement about drum testing and dimple plates totally misses the points made in the article. They emphasize hysterisis losses and therefore point in the wrong direction. On road testing proves this. If we relied on drums only, we would all still be riding 19 mm tires.
    The statement was really meant to convey that there is value in labratory testing. I'm not suggesting the methodology can't be improved, just that there's value in controlled tests.

    But to your second point, that is definitely not true. There are plenty of controlled tests that clearly demonstrate and quantify the value of wider tires -- certainly any I have seen, and probably all such tests in recent years.

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    Wider tires may be faster to a point, but my road bike is clearly faster with its 25 mm than my touring/gravel bike is with 42 mm tires. My average speed is consistently at least 1 mph faster over similar rides with the road bike.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kerry Irons View Post
    You can be as sceptical as you want. The DATA bear out the Bicycle Quarterly testing, and if it didn't, we wouldn't have seen the massive switch to wider tires that has taken place over the past 5 years. Bicycling is, and always has been full of myths and misconceptions based on "intuition" that is not supported by evidence. Jan is one of the few people out there who actually brings logic and evidence to the problem.

    Your statement about drum testing and dimple plates totally misses the points made in the article. They emphasize hysterisis losses and therefore point in the wrong direction. On road testing proves this. If we relied on drums only, we would all still be riding 19 mm tires.
    Not true. See https://www.bicyclerollingresistance...0s-ii-23-25-28. This shows the 28 mm tire having less rolling resistance than the narrower versions.

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