Tire pressure for best traction on wet pavement?
Results 1 to 11 of 11
  1. #1
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Posts
    5,270

    Tire pressure for best traction on wet pavement?

    The forecast calls for rain.

    Will decreasing or increasing tire pressure give a person better traction on wet pavement?

  2. #2
    Anti-Hero
    Reputation: Andrea138's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    10,342
    Yes- 120 psi is not great for hard turns in the rain. I got caught in a surprise shower this morning and almost learned the hard way

    I'd drop it to 100 or so (the lower you go, the more you have to watch out for bumps & things that could cause pinch flats).
    No turkey unless it's a club sandwich
    Brickhouse Blog

  3. #3
    I'm just watching a dream
    Reputation: f1oored's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Posts
    138
    Decreasing the pressure will help. Typically I just run the same pressure and take the turns with a little less gusto. I run about 110 all the time. Are you racing in the rain or is it just a training ride?
    "The only way to find true happiness is to risk being completely cut open." ~Chuck Palahniuk~

  4. #4
    chamois creme addict
    Reputation: Eric_H's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    1,479

    Tire choice as well

    Two things will help with wet weather cornering.

    1) Lower tire pressure = larger contact patch. If it is really wet and technical (which at my old age I try to avoid), I will use 95 PSI in the rear and 90 PSI in the front for 700x23 clinchers. I weigh 165-170 lbs depending on the time of year.

    2) Tire choice. Tires that have a higher "carbon black" content will do better in the wet. Tires that have silica-enhanced compounds and non-black colors will do worse. The more silica content the less wet road adhesion. Don't be fooled by tread patterns that claim to remove water as the contact patch on a bicyle tire is so small that tread has no effect (unlike a car tire). My choice for wet weather is the Vredestein Fortezza in all black. The Vittoria Open CX in all black is a good choice, but they are more vulnerable to flats. Also, the Panaracers seem to have better-than-average wet weather adhesion. I never find Michelin to be great in the wet, but I have not tried the Pro Grip model. Continental are also a little suspect in the wet, plus a Conti tire tends to be a little less round in section compared to a Vred or Vittoria (Conti is a little U-shaped).

  5. #5
    Game on, b*tches!
    Reputation: Kram's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    13,467
    My Specialized all condition pros do well in the slop. I decrease the pressure to about 110 (usually run about 120).
    Originally Posted by tetter
    'Pain is temporary, and there might be beer at the finish line'

    "Karma is spread in lots of different ways. You know, like herpes."
    catzilla
    "I'm an American male. This is pizza. Leave me alone!"
    Alton Brown
    ohnoIaintsuckingnomore.blogspot.com



  6. #6
    waterproof*
    Reputation: Creakyknees's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Posts
    41,589
    I think the #1 thing is to pick the right line at the right speed. Think about crosswalk stripes, puddles, asphalt vs concrete texture, decorative brick walkways across the road, tar patches, the middle of the lane vs the tire tracks... all these things will have significantly different traction.

    Sure, on a particular surface the tires will make a difference, but it's a bigger difference between surfaces.

    Watch this vid for an example:




    Those guys, their problem was not tire selection or tire pressure. It was taking that corner as fast as the concrete will hold, but faster than the bricks will hold.
    * not actually a Rock Star

  7. #7
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Posts
    5,270
    One guy's problem was hitting the front break when the back wheel was sliding.

  8. #8
    Cat 6 rider
    Reputation: California L33's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    3,090
    Quote Originally Posted by Creakyknees
    I think the #1 thing is to pick the right line at the right speed. Think about crosswalk stripes, puddles, asphalt vs concrete texture, decorative brick walkways across the road, tar patches, the middle of the lane vs the tire tracks... all these things will have significantly different traction.
    Amen- and leaves, dirt, sand, or anything else loose that may get between road and the tires, at which point the traction of the tire becomes only as good as the traction between the detritus and the wet road.
    To the troll mobile, away...

  9. #9
    waterproof*
    Reputation: Creakyknees's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Posts
    41,589

    Red face

    Quote Originally Posted by pretender
    One guy's problem was hitting the front break when the back wheel was sliding.
    yeah, that was hilarious. uhhh let go of the brake dood.
    * not actually a Rock Star

  10. #10
    You call that running?
    Reputation: The Sundance Kid's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    262
    Tire pressure depends in large part on how big you are. I drop mine from 100 down to 85 or 90, but I only weigh 135 lbs.

  11. #11
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: messyparrot's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Posts
    370
    Watching that video was painful !

    The one guy made it around the corner only to wipe out on the straight.

    Lots of skin left behind that day.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

THE SITE

ABOUT ROADBIKEREVIEW

VISIT US AT

© Copyright 2019 VerticalScope Inc. All rights reserved.