New tires less grippy?
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  1. #1
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    New tires less grippy?

    Does the mold-release compound and rubber 'flashing' REALLY make a new road tire much less grippy? There are a couple (ex-racer) locals who recently gave me grief about mounting a brand new tire up front (last of my GP4k stockpile). They say they never want a brand new "slick" tire on their front wheel, but always run it 100mi or so on the rear before remounting it in front. In years of 'spirited' (20-25mph) group riding I've never had a problem sliding out a fresh front tire, and don't rotate my tires (except moving the old front on the rear when replacing the front). Am I missing something new here, or are some dudes just overly fond of changing bike tires?

  2. #2
    'brifter' is f'ing stupid
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    Those guys don't have anything resembling a clue. Not even close. I always want the new tire on the front because I want the best puncture resistance at the front. Mold release reducing traction? Please.
    Your thoughts on this are correct, don't rotate, mount new tire on front and move the old front to the rear.
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  3. #3
    tlg
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oldteen View Post
    Does the mold-release compound and rubber 'flashing' REALLY make a new road tire much less grippy?
    No. That's dumb.

    If you were really concerned about it, rather than run the tire for 100mi and rotating it, just wash the tire before mounting it.
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  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by tlg View Post
    No. That's dumb.

    If you were really concerned about it, rather than run the tire for 100mi and rotating it, just wash the tire before mounting it.
    Bingo. The mold flash REALLY has no effect but I have seen new tires come out of the box with a layer of fine powder on them, which could be mold release agent but is more likely something post-mold applied to keep the tires from sticking to each other or themselves in the packaging or storage process. If you get a tire with this on it, wipe it off or wash it off. If 100 miles of riding would remove it, then clearly soap and water would too. Or just water.

    Putting a new tire on the back for 100 miles and then moving it to the front (where it belongs) smacks of superstitious behavior.

  5. #5
    Schuylkill Trail Bum
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    After mounting a new tire on front, if I have any doubts about its grippiness, I ride around the neighborhood swerving and cornering until the tire has a nice matte surface.

  6. #6
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    I don't notice new tires being less grippy on my bicycle but I do on my motorcycle. It's likely not from the mold line or mold release but they become more grippy as they are scuffed. If you discern a difference you could scuff it with some sand paper.
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by craiger_ny View Post
    I don't notice new tires being less grippy on my bicycle but I do on my motorcycle. It's likely not from the mold line or mold release but they become more grippy as they are scuffed. If you discern a difference you could scuff it with some sand paper.
    Yep, I was going to say the same thing. Back when I road raced motorcycles a new set always got a half dozen laps on them to scuff them up before use in a race. I never would have started with a brand new set, and nobody I know would have either.
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  8. #8
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    I've had a few fishtail skids on new tires. Usually vanishes after 10-20 miles. Had one set of panaracer tires that had a lot of mold release on one. Took a week or so for that to wear off. Rear would skid on any downhill stop. Just rode it carefully until grip improved.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oldteen View Post
    In years of 'spirited' (20-25mph) group riding I've never had a problem sliding out a fresh front tire, and don't rotate my tires (except moving the old front on the rear when replacing the front). Am I missing something new here, or are some dudes just overly fond of changing bike tires?
    You are correct. And no, you are not missing anything. These guys don't have a clue.
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