A lot of attention is given to a bike’s frame, weight, and composition but the little over two centimeters of tread keeping us connected to the road often gets overlooked. Choosing the right tires can do wonders for your riding experience. Tires are the cheapest upgrade you can make to your bike and they’ll make a surprising difference. A good set of tires can help you go faster and be more comfortable in the process. They might even help you corner better too. There are so many different brands, tire sizes, compounds and to make things even more complicated, different tires marketed for different occasions.
Types Of Road Bike Tires :
There are three types of road bike tires.
- Clincher tires
- Tubular tires
- Tubeless tires
- Clincher Tires :
Clincher tires are found on the majority of road bikes. These tires have a horse-shoe shaped profile, which “clinchers” to the rim when the tire is inflated. The main advantage of clinchers is that they make fixing a flat easy because all you have to do to get at the punctured tube is pry off one side of the tire. This usually requires a tire lever or two but with some tires, you can do it with just your thumbs.
- More common
- Easier to patch on the road, no need for gluing, stretching tire, etc
- If you flat, you can’t really ride on it
- A lower quality ride
- Will always be heavier (tube, tire, clincher interface)
Tubular Tires :
Tubulars are what most pro riders use for racing. They still rely on an inner tube but instead of the casing being open, like on a clincher, it’s sewn shut around the inner tube, so that the pairing takes on a tubular form — hence the name. While the vast majority of cyclists use clincher type tires for their bikes, a lot of the high-end performance racing end of the market prefers to use tubular tires. These tires are mounted on special tubular specific rims and are glued/taped on to the rims. The inner tube is sewn within the casing of the tire, to form a sealed unit.
- The lightest practical tubular will always be lighter than the lightest clincher
- If you flat, you can ride on it for a little longer
- If glued properly and the tire will stay on the rim even if it flats
- More difficult to maintain/repatch as an individual without team support on the road
- You could get a tire/rim separator, especially when rims are hot from braking and end up like Beloki.
- Costs more (rims, tubulars)
Tubular Tires :
Tubeless tires have been a mainstay in the mountain biking world for some time and they’ve now come to road cycling, although they’re a very long way from taking over. In recent years, we’ve seen the growth of tubeless clincher tires. These are designed to fit the rim very tightly and be completely air-tight; the tire can then be inflated (with a tubeless valve and rim tape), without the need for an inner tube.
Tubeless tires save weight and can be run at a lower pressure – for increased grip, without a heightened risk of punctures.
- You get better traction because you’re running a lower tire pressure
- With the latest tire technology and rim designs that are wider, you get much better performance
- Because there is sealant in the tubes, you get increased puncture resistance
- Cost – depending on how you’re set up now, you may need to pay more for tires and rims that are tubeless compatible. Or at a minimum, you may be able to use rim tape and a tubeless-ready tire. Check with us for tubeless options
- Maintenance – you’ll need to replace the sealant in your tires every 2-6 months
- More complicated to set up initially.
Best Road Bike Tires Review
These are the 5 best balance bikes for toddler :
Continental GP4000 S2:
The Continental GP4000 S2 was the reference tire in the road market but now gets a facelift. 4000S II gets a Vectran breaker for unsurpassed puncture protection and Continentals advanced BlackChili compound for lower rolling resistance and increased grip. These premium clincher tires come in a variety of widths (23C, 25C, and 28C) so you can find the perfect one for your riding style and preference.
Mile Eater. The popular Durano has a completely new profile and is no 10g lighter! Its outstanding qualities remain Extremely high mileage. They’re designed with durability, grip and puncture protection in mind, and aimed towards cyclists with high mileage. They typically last at least 6000km/3700mi before showing signs of wear.
Vittoria Rubino Pro G2:
Designed for intensive training, it is equally suitable for racing events. The Rubino Pro builds on the standard Rubino platform, utilizing the same exclusive 3C Graphene compound structure, long service life, puncture protection, and sharp handling traits, but substitutes a folding bead material for reduced weight. This tire features Vittoria’s graphene technology, which significantly reduces punctures. And while you may not be throwing your bike into corners on this tire, at 120 TPI, this tire will still give you a comfortable ride with some nice performance qualities, making it a great value for its price point.
Michelin Pro4 Endurance:
The Pro4 tire lineup is a level down from Michelin’s premium Power range. With the Pro4 Endurance, you’re looking at a set of road bike tires that are optimized for maximum mileage and puncture protection. Michelin uses a bead-to-bead HD Protection Layer (a rarity in today’s tires) to protect against puncture. This is significant because the sidewalls are now significantly stronger and have the same level of protection as the rest of the tire.
Vittoria Corsa G2:
Vittoria has finally released the second generation of its very popular Corsa tires in March 2019. The first generation Corsa, now called G1 was released in early 2016 and has been very popular since then, especially for its suppleness, low rolling resistance and tanned sidewall colors. I’m sure you’ve seen many of them around. As with its entire line of tires.
Pirelli P Zero Velo:
In recent years, Pirelli is not a brand name that is synonymous with cycling. They made a comeback in 2017 when the Pirelli P Zero Velo was announced. Pirelli actually has a long history in road cycling, dating back to the first Giro d’Italia in 1909. Back then, 30 of the 49 cyclists who took part rode Pirelli tires. Even 5-times Giro d’Italia winner, Fausto Coppi rode the Pirelli’s during his peak.
Schwalbe Pro One:
Schwalbe has updated its popular Pro One tubeless tire, with a new design said to be faster and lighter than its predecessor, with improved puncture protection and durability. The latest Pro-One utilizes a new carcass construction and compound, and also conforms to the now-confirmed standard for road tubeless. Schwalbe made major improvements in its compound, resulting in lower rolling resistance, better suppleness and puncture protection.
Continental GP 4 Season:
The Continental GP 4 Season is every road cyclist’s choice for a durable road bike tire. It’s sometimes referred to as the beefier version of the popular Continental GP4000 S2. Puncture protection is top-notch with 2 layers of Continental’s Vectran inserts. The sidewalls are also reinforced with a layer of durable DuraSkin which reduces the chances of getting a sidewall cut.
Continental Gator Hardshell Duraskin:
If you commute to work right after a weekday morning bunch ride, then this is the ideal set of tires. It’s well known for its puncture protection properties and high mileage while still having a relatively low rolling resistance. At 180 TPI, it’s still supple enough with 3 layers of polyester under the tire threads protecting you against punctures. It’s also available in MTB and 650c versions to suit a wider range of bikes.