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PostPosted: Thu May 19, 2011 7:12 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jun 30, 2009 7:40 pm
Posts: 316
Location: CA
I just purchased some new Zipp 303s and the rim width is quite wide. I have 2 tire choices on hand: Veloflex Carbon 22mm and Vittoria Corsa Evo CX 23mm. I've read the Veloflex tire may be a better performer, especially in the rain, and I have had pretty good success with them in the past. That said, I'm wondering if it would be wiser to go with the wider 23mm Vittoria tire or maybe even purchase some 24-25mm tires for these rims? For those riding wide tubular rims, what tire width and/or specific tire do you feel is the best fit? I'm riding on average quality roads in hilly conditions with very little rain if it makes a difference.


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PostPosted: Thu May 19, 2011 7:54 pm 
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Location: Aarhus, Denmark
I don't think the Vittorias would last very long as an everyday tubular. My understanding is that the main problem with wide rims and narrower tubulars, is that you might hurt the rim when riding over rougher terrain or if you hit a rock or similar.
So as you said yourself i would look for some wider tubulars for your carbon babies. Have you considered the Veloflex Roubaix?
I know it's not as light as either the Carbon or the Corsa Evo but the weight penalty isn't that bad, and i bet they will take you anywhere you want.

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Posted: Thu May 19, 2011 7:54 pm 


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PostPosted: Thu May 19, 2011 8:20 pm 
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Location: CA
I have looked at the Veloflex Roubaix many times, and as horribly vain as this is going to sound, I simply can't get past the natural colored sidewall! :oops:

The Carbons @ 22mm do seem too narrow for the Zipps. Certainly seems like the rim would be exposed like one of those poorly fitted Fast & Furious type cars. Are you suggesting the Vittoria Evo CX @ 23mm also might not be wide enough or just that they may not hold up well to everyday riding?


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PostPosted: Thu May 19, 2011 8:26 pm 
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Wait, do they sell the Roubaix in a black sidewall as well? I always thought they were natural only for some reason, but I'm looking at some on eBay now that have a black sidewall.

I really like the Veloflex Carbon so maybe the Roubaix in black @ 24mm would be the ideal compromise on a Zipp 303? I don't mind adding ~40g of tire as it's going towards a better ride.


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PostPosted: Thu May 19, 2011 8:32 pm 
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Without being an expert on the subject, i think the Corsa Evo will be wide enough.

I didn't know that Roubaix came with black sidewalls, i love my tan ones though 8)

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PostPosted: Thu May 19, 2011 8:34 pm 
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Location: Aix en Provence
They used to be black sidewall, the new Roubaix are only taned... Some black may still be found. But be careful if you find older black Roubaix you will for sure get addicted and then you will have to manage the transition from black sidewall to tan sidewall. So my recommendation is to go tan sidewall right now. They look very cool.


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PostPosted: Thu May 19, 2011 8:34 pm 
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Location: Detroit, MI
I've got the Vittoria 23mm on some newer (non FC) 404's and they are noticeably wider than the rim. I've also got some Veloflex Carbons on the older style 303 and would have the same concern about them being too narrow for the rim.

If you can stand the green stripe the Vittoria Pave is supposed to be a very nice tire.


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PostPosted: Thu May 19, 2011 10:37 pm 
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Location: CA
Thanks for the info everyone. It sounds like Veloflex Roubaix it is for me. I'll see if I can scoop some black ones, but I suppose I could do the natural sidewall if needed. I'm sick of trying to find the perfect tire as it doesn't quite exist.

Continental - Pros: Good durability, all black. Cons: Stiff, difficult to mount, average ride quality, no 23-24mm width(?)
Vittoria Evo CX - Pros: Good ride quality, all black, easy to mount, 23mm width. Cons: Poor in the rain, poor durability
Veloflex Roubaix - Pros: Good ride quality, 24mm width, easy to mount, decent durability. Cons: Expensive, hard to obtain, natural sidewall color

So I want an Evo CX with better durability or a Roubaix that is black and easier to find locally :D


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PostPosted: Thu May 19, 2011 10:50 pm 
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Location: Chicago
I have the new 303s and have fitted some Veloflex Extremes on them. The tires measure a little over 22mm wide. They do look a little small on them but performance wise I've had no issues.


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PostPosted: Fri May 20, 2011 3:19 am 
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Location: NoVA/DC
i believe zipp still recommends 21mm tires for best aero performance, despite how they look on their wide rims.
i think hed goes the other way, recommending 23mm as the minimum width on their rims.
im not sure what you mean by "best fit", if the tires fit the rim (as the above suggestions imply) or aesthetics, or what. there are some good reasons for going with wider tires regardless of wheel choice.


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PostPosted: Fri May 20, 2011 4:00 pm 
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Vittoria Pave Evo CG in 24 mm??? They do (or used to last time I checked) come in all black.


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PostPosted: Fri May 20, 2011 6:08 pm 
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Location: Little Rock, AR
Zipp recommends between 23-25 width tires on their website. The rim is built for that width. I have been running the EVO CX tires since February for all of my races and a few training rides and I still have all of the tread completely intact and no cuts. I weigh nothing however. I will attest to the poor performance in the wet, I crashed in our own crit because of a leaky sprinkler nearby putting some water on a turn. Also, keep in mind this tire tends to be 24mm wide instead of 23mm.


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PostPosted: Sat May 21, 2011 7:04 am 
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Location: NoVA/DC
MrRedRaider wrote:
Zipp recommends between 23-25 width tires on their website. The rim is built for that width.


from the zipp FAQ:

Tire choice depends highly on user preference and conditions. To summarize, a 21mm has superior aerodynamics with our rims; a 23mm is larger and subsequently has better ride quality and rim protection, but at a slight aero penalty. Here are some questions you can ask that will help guide your decision:


Triathlon/Time trial? In general – 21mm.
Road racing? In general – 23mm.
Training and/or daily riding? 23mm+

Dry? 21mm at normal recommended pressure.
Wet? 23mm at a slightly lower pressure.

Smooth roads? 21mm at normal recommended pressure.
Rough roads? 23mm at a slightly lower pressure.

User prefers slight aero benefit of 21's at the expense of a little ride comfort, rim protection, and rolling resistance? Use 21mm.
User prefers slightly better ride comfort, rim protection, and rolling resistance of 23's at the expense of a little aero? Use 23mm.

Rider weighs less? 21mm.
Rider weighs more? 23mm.

from the 303 tubular page:
Total Weight 1171g
with Powertap 1381g
Brake Track Top 25.34mm
Brake Track Bottom 26.14mm
Recommended Tire Width 21-35mm

from the 404 tubular page:
Total Weight 1278g
Brake Track Top 21,93
Brake Track Bottom 22.92
Recommended Tire Width 21mm

like I said,
thisisatest wrote:
i believe zipp still recommends 21mm tires for best aero performance, despite how they look on their wide rims.


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PostPosted: Sat May 21, 2011 9:22 am 
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Location: by Crystal Springs (Sawyer Creek Trail)
That's not updated for Firecrest. Firecrest is solely designed around 23 mm-25 to get the best grip from the wider rim (as well as aerodynamics to get a flush interface between brake track and tire sidewall), and to get the benefit of the lower rolling resistance. For the older style rims, 21 is the best aerodynamically


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PostPosted: Sat May 21, 2011 11:43 am 
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Location: NoVA/DC
from the 404 Carbon Clincher page, as it is only ever available in the Firecrest shape (not that it's relevant, as the title states this is for 303, but to make the point)

Total Weight 1557g
Tire Bead Inside to Inside 16.25
Brake Track Top 24.89mm
Brake Track Bottom 25.32mm
Recommended Tire Width 21mm <-------check it out.

I know what you guys are saying, but this is what ive understood when talking to the zipp guys, and it's supported on the website.


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Posted: Sat May 21, 2011 11:43 am 


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