Monday, October 10, 2011

700x38 Ride Report

Last week I reported mounting 700x38 cyclocross tires on the Gary Fisher Superfly to get better roll on the road, while still maintaining enough off-road-ness to ride the HD Bluff trails occasionally.  I have about 75 miles on the set-up.

The road performance is outstanding.  These tires are light and give good traction with little rolling resistance or noise.  They make the carbon fiber mountain bike feel almost like a road bike and a lot of fun to ride on the road.  I also did a test run across the bluff on dry trails to test the off-road capabilities.

The tires performed well for climbing, stopping and maneuvering on the dry trails.  The were also fast rolling and improved the flick-ability and quickness of the bike.  I did notice that the rear would break free if I hit a berm while carrying a lot of speed, but is was nothing unmanageable. 

The big difference was the feel of the ride itself.  Going from high-volume, tubeless tires with 30 psi to low-volume 80 psi meant for a lot of chatter when riding over the rocks.  I pumped them to the maximum pressure for the road and to ensure I did not get a pinch flat over the rocks.  It was not the end of the world, but you could definitely feel the difference.

Overall, I think the ride quality is worth the trade-off for speed and noise since I mostly ride the bike on the road for now.  The wheels are still set-up for tubeless tires, so I may just find a tubeless cross tire to see how low I can go with the pressure and still keep a fast rolling tire.

Now if I could just get that trail of soap bubbles to stop following me around.

1 comment:

  1. I run tubeless (stans crest 29er) on my cross bike with non-tubeless tires (ritchey speed max 32m). 5 races so far, and they have worked flawlessly. Try to run at 35psi, but was late to the CDA pratice race and couldn't top off. After the race I put my pump on and they read 20psi. Great reviews on Clement tires for non-tubeless. Wanted the file tread version "LAS", but they were out. Honestly can't complain about the Ritcheys, and they're cheaper! Tubeless is the only way to go, converting the MTB next spring.