Best Bicycle Tyres and Tubes for Road, MTB and BMX
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WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW TO CHOOSE THE BEST BIKE TYRES FOR YOU
You can be in either one of two camps; you want to buy a new tyre, or you want to replace an existing one. Regardless of your particular situation, one constant is the need to be certain you’re buying the ideal tyres. There is no one-size-fits-all product for every cyclist. The type you’ll use depends on what you do with your bike.
When selecting bike tyres online, the obvious thing you should look out for is to ensure that it fits your rim. Apart from that, there are other features you should look out for in your search for cheap yet durable bicycle tyres.
If you don’t know these features off the top of your head, then you are in luck. By the time you are done reading this, you will be a tyre selection expert.
SELECTING THE TYRE SIZE
The first and quite obvious thing that you need to know is the right size of tyres that you need. The size depends on the type of bike you have. This is because each type has its own style of representing size.
Mountain bikes show their sizing in pairing like 27.5 x 2.0. The first figure (27.5”) is the outer diameter while the second figure (2”) is the width.
Cross country bikes have a width range from 1.9” to 2.25”. For trail and mountain bikes, the width range is from 2.25” to 2.4”. Downhill bikes, made for rougher terrain, have a range starting from 2.5”. Selecting the best MTB tyres depends on the one that fits your specific situation and style.
Road Touring and Racing Bikes
Road bikes have their sizes written in multiples of hundred. This is because the outer diameter measurement is in millimetres. So, if you see something like 700” x 23”, the first figure is the outer diameter while the second figure is the width, in millimetres.
This kind has small knobbles. Also, they usually have a narrow width with a 700 diameter to help them fit well into the cyclocross frame.
These are quite similar to cyclocross tyres. They are just wider and are knobbier. They are designed to roll over mud and sand and they are also much better when it comes to cornering and climbing due to increased traction and contact with the trail.
These always have a 20” diameter so in the absence of variation, size shouldn’t pose much of a problem when you are selecting the product you want to fix on your bike.
UNDERSTANDING THE TYRE TREAD
The more tread you have on your tyres, the more grip they have on the road. Conversely, the less tread they have, the faster they can go. Both sides of the coin have their pros and cons, so you’ll have to carefully outline what kind of riding you intend to do with your bike, on what kind of terrain and in what kind of weather. Do that and you’ll have done half the work necessary to pick your ideal product from the array of bike tyres for sale at Bike Chaser.
Smooth with little or no tread, this type is used for cycling on smooth surfaces like slickrock, asphalt, or groomed singletrack. So, if you want to use your bicycle on roads, tours and other smooth surfaces, be sure to get a slick tyre.
Semi-slicks are smooth in the centre but have treads by the side. Cyclists use them mostly for smooth surfaces, but once in a while, you can use them off the road.
These kinds of treads have more resistance than slicks but are not as resistant as knobbles. You can use them on smooth roads with occasional portholes and rough terrain.
Knobbles give you the most resistance and are best suited for very rough terrain. The different types of knobbles define the terrain you’d use your bike on. Small knobs are cool for smooth singletracks. If you happen to be cycling through rough terrain with roots and rocks, you can go for taller knobs. For soft trail conditions, you should consider using wider versions with paddle knobs.
OTHER IMPORTANT FEATURES
These do not use a wire bead (the edge of the tyre that connects it to the rim). Instead, they use aramid fibre beads, making them foldable and much lighter. One major advantage is that they are very easy to transport and store but the drawback to consider is that they can cost quite a bit more than traditional styles.
Tubeless products are now gaining popularity because they allow you to run lower pressures with better traction without getting pinch flats. While they also give you a smoother ride, inexperienced riders might find them complex to install. Also, when you consider shifting to tubeless tyres, you have to get specific rims suited for it.
There are two major types of valves, Presta valves and Schrader valves. Presta valves are narrow and have a cap that you can unscrew when you want to inflate the tyre. You are more likely to see a Presta valve on high end bikes designed for riding on the road. You shouldn’t use a Presta valve if your rim hole is shaped for a Schrader valve. This is because the valve would shift too much and it can end up getting cut.
Schraders have a valve similar to the ones you would find on car tyres. Manufacturers use them on midrange and inexpensive bikes. Due to their larger size, you can’t fit Schrader valves in holes made for Presta valves.
With studded tyres, you get a product that has steel or aluminium studs. This is also fitted with carbide pins that would give you greater traction when riding in icy or snowy terrain.
Puncture resistant tyres will do just as their name implies – prevent you from frequently experiencing flats. Manufacturers are able to achieve this by using belts of aramid fibres, or increasing the thickness of the tread.