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  1. #1
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    What's it like running with 20mm tires?

    Curiosity struck, basically.

    I'm not looking for the "wider is better" debate to arise all over again, and can't even say I'd actually try it, but am curious to hear about what they're like. Of course, I'm hoping to hear about usage of more current 700x20 tires.

  2. #2
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    Nice if they're hard and the road ultra flat, if not uncomfortable ans inefficient.

    I used to TT on nice flat dual carriage ways with 19mm tubs, lovely.

    Wouldn't do that on roads in NZ now though. I'm on 24mm thinking of trying something wider in the rear. Opposite curiosity to you!!!

  3. #3
    Get me to In&Out
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    I used to ride 700x20 Michelin Axial Pros. That was probably seven years ago. They ride less comfortable is about all I can remember. Tire mounting was more of a challenge if I remember correctly too.
    Cyclists really need to learn a little Rule #5.

  4. #4
    eRacer
    Reputation: jmlapoint's Avatar
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    700 x20 Tires;
    Also Axial Pros years past.
    Hard to mount.
    Harsh ride.
    Only used front for TT.
    Have to keep hard to avoid pinches and flats.

    john
    John Lapoint / San Diego
    God is Great, Beer is Good, and People are Crazy!

  5. #5
    eRacer
    Reputation: jmlapoint's Avatar
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    700 x20 Tires;
    Also Axial Pros years past.
    Hard to mount.
    Harsh ride.
    Only used front for TT.
    Have to keep hard to avoid pinches and flats.

    john
    John Lapoint / San Diego
    God is Great, Beer is Good, and People are Crazy!

  6. #6
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    using 700x20 tires is pretty silly unless its for a tt bike on a very smooth and straight road. I used some 700x20 Contis many years ago and lets just say I ended up removing them and going back to 700x23 within a week. I believe there was some study that showed that 700x23 tires would actually be faster overall in real world riding conditions.

  7. #7
    Old and Fixed, Moderator
    Reputation: Dave Hickey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jmlapoint
    700 x20 Tires;

    Have to keep hard to avoid pinches and flats.

    john

    +1.. and be very careful mounting around the valve to keep the tube from getting stuck underneath the bead
    Dave Hickey/ Fort Worth

    My 3Rensho Blog: http://vintage3rensholove.blogspot.com/

  8. #8
    A wheelist
    Reputation: Mike T.'s Avatar
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    I had some for a couple of rides years ago and it was one of the most regrettable things (on a bike) that I've done. They're a brute to fit (or stuff tubes into) and ride much too hard. It's 25's for me now except for my indoor board track bike. On that bike it's 23mm Conti Supersonics.
    .
    Mike T's home wheelbuilding site - dedicated to providing Newby wheelbuilders with motivation, information and resources.

  9. #9
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    There is always at least one exception to every thread and I guess I am the one on this thread. I like my 20 mm tires! Almost two years ago I switched from clinchers to tubulars. When using clinchers I always used 23 mm tires, mainly Continental GP Supersonics (roads where I ride tend to be fairly clean so I can use lighter tires). Since switching to tubulars I have used exclusively two very different tires, 22 mm Vittoria Crono Evo's or 20 mm Tufo Elite Jets. The Tufo's I will run at 125 psi while the Crono's I will run at 100 to 110 psi. Tufo's tend to get alot of derision in the tubular tire world. Not alot of love for them out there. I sense it comes from people who have not actually used them. The 20mm Tufo's weakness is, as others have stated concerning 20 mm tires, comfort. They are not as comfortable as the Vittoria Crono's which are buttery smooth. The 20 mm Tufo's aren't harsh, however. I think most reports of the harshness of 20 mm tires is because people tend to pump them up to absurd pressures such as 160 psi and above just because you can with them. The plusses of 20 mm tires, including my Tufo Elite Jets, is that they are more aerodynamic and also they are very light. Supposedly they have more rolling resistance although I would debate that a 23 mm tire at 110 psi won't roll better than a 20 mm at 125 psi, but that has been discussed and argued to death. I will say that I believe the lighter weight and greater aerodynamics of my 20 mm Tufo's overcome any deficit in rolling resistance and I feel that they are just as fast, if not faster, than my wider Vittoria's. Not to turn this into a Tufo defense thread, but I will also say that even though they are VERY light (160 g.) I have found my Tufo Elite Jets to be VERY durable. Much more than my clinchers used to be and much better than the Vittoria Crono's.

  10. #10
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    Interesting takes - most of them being flat-out regrets from what sounds like the get-go with the mounting troubles. Anything to say about cornering?

    I guess the harsh ride was predictable, but almost nobody has any praise at all for such tires so far; paints quite an image. Thanks for the responses.

  11. #11
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    I have a Conti 19mm Podium tubular tire on my "windy weather" front wheel - Sun Mistral M14 rim - 24 ti spokes on a Phil Wood hub. The skinny Podium tire does corner quite well at 85 psi but it doesn't give me the confidence that a 22 mm Sprinter does.

  12. #12
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    I had 700x20 Conni GT's. In a word - Painful.

    I did not have mounting issues, and only a few flats (once I learned 150psi is not optional). My biggest issue was the tires killing the cheep pumps I was buying. 150PSI is tough on pumps.
    Veni, Vidi, Vomiti.

  13. #13
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    I used a 700x20 front in my 'A' crit this year. I did pretty well, but I definitely noticed the difference.

  14. #14
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    I've been using 20mm Conti SS tires on the TT bike for a couple years now. No complaints. The aero benefit should exceed the Crr detriment at >20mph.

  15. #15
    rayms
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    What is the most durable 20mm tire?

  16. #16
    'brifter' is a lame word.
    Reputation: cxwrench's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rayms View Post
    What is the most durable 20mm tire?
    The one you don't ride because 20mm tires suck.
    I work for some bike racers
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    and a bunch of skateboards

  17. #17
    Huge in Japan
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    Quote Originally Posted by rayms View Post
    What is the most durable 20mm tire?
    Hopefully some of the posters in this thread from 8 years ago will get back to you. That certainly ought to be enough time anyway.
    Interwebs bumpersticker goes here

  18. #18
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by cxwrench View Post
    The one you don't ride because 20mm tires suck.
    Do these even exist anymore? I guess there are still some that believe the "narrower is faster" myth.
    "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



  19. #19
    Russian Troll Farmer
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    Man, I put my old semi-aero wheelset on my Cannondale the other day; it has 22mm challenges on it. Felt every_single_bump. 20mm tires for the road? Are you crazy????

    FWIW, it seems this poster only comes here once a year to dredge up some seriously old thread.....check his post history.
    "L'enfer, c'est les autres"

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