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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 12:26 pm 
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I'm building up an All-Road in the coming weeks and still torn on wheels. I can get an extremely good deal on a set of super light 700C wheels with good internal width, but was originally considering doing 650Bx47 for the bike. Thoughts on the rolling speed with the 650 set up? Either way I am going to do big tires 38-42mm for the 700 and 45-47 for the 650 if I go that route. I kind of want this to be a do-everything bike, so I'll be using it for gravel riding, bike packing, and probably a winter ride for slower days where I am not in a group of road bikes.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 2:01 pm 
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I thought going 650b myself too... but I dropped the idea primarily because I'm unsure how that would translate in bottom bracket height or overall stability of my bike.
I'm riding 700c Kona Rove 2013. If I'm on market now, choosing between 650b and 700c Rove, I'd be really tempted to go 650b.


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Posted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 2:01 pm 


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 10:51 pm 
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Location: Perth
Can't help at the moment, but would be interested in your result.

Running 27.5x2.1 at the moment. Road bike background, so the tyre is about the same diameter, which I like.

Probably will also get a 700c disk wheelset down the track, but most likely will keep the tyre at 38mm max, so it doesn't get too big, even though the frame can fit about 43mm.


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 05, 2017 1:31 am 
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jemima wrote:
Can't help at the moment, but would be interested in your result.

Running 27.5x2.1 at the moment. Road bike background, so the tyre is about the same diameter, which I like.

Probably will also get a 700c disk wheelset down the track, but most likely will keep the tyre at 38mm max, so it doesn't get too big, even though the frame can fit about 43mm.

Which tire are you running? And I ride 90% road bikes so the 650B would probably keep the feel similar, but I do have an FS 29er and enjoy the handling of that, even on the ride to the parks.


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 05, 2017 5:11 am 
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Location: Perth
morganb wrote:
jemima wrote:
Can't help at the moment, but would be interested in your result.

Running 27.5x2.1 at the moment. Road bike background, so the tyre is about the same diameter, which I like.

Probably will also get a 700c disk wheelset down the track, but most likely will keep the tyre at 38mm max, so it doesn't get too big, even though the frame can fit about 43mm.

Which tire are you running? And I ride 90% road bikes so the 650B would probably keep the feel similar, but I do have an FS 29er and enjoy the handling of that, even on the ride to the parks.


Schwalbe ThunderBurt.


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 06, 2017 2:27 pm 
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Location: NorthEU
Yes, i do. 700C tires and less wide tires is on paper the faster combo.
But this may also depend on the terrain.
Fastest to date for 700C, is Hutchinson Black Mamba CX (tubeless) 700*34.

I rode Vredestein Spotted Cat Superlite, the lightest tubeless version (27.5*2.0)
This tire and 650B wheels was not showing any loss at all compared to my 700C wheels and 36-40mm tires.
If you ride mostly tarmac the 700C is to prefer, but if you ride 50/50 or more gravel and perhaps some trails, it's splitting hair.

I rode Hutchinson Black Mamba 27.5*2.0, Vredestein Spotted Cat Superlite 27.5*2.0 and Panaracer Gravel King SK 650*48.
I actually thought i would like Panaracer best, as i love their 700 tires (Gravel King SK). But i prefer Vredestein.

For pure speed the 700C should win, but again, if you can have a more linear speed and grip over the whole route, the 650B can be as good.
Just remember a less hard side wall make the tire plusher and offer more comfort.

For a stiff fork gravel bike, 650B is a good idea as it is plusher.
Just don't use to low psi if you want them to be more nimble.

Talking BB height from ground and up, i don't think you'd notice that.

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 06, 2017 4:46 pm 
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Thanks for all the detailed responses. This is definitely pushing me more towards the 650B, especially since the speed loss seems to be terrain specific and almost unnoticeable. I have multiple road bikes so I hopefully will be spending more time off pavement than on with this one. I hadn't even considered Vredestein so that's another option to consider. I think I am going to start off with WTB Byways and see if that gets me enough traction on dirt. I imagine I will be woefully under tired for single track but okay for most everything else. I occasionally will take one of my road bikes on single track or gravel that would be better ridden on a mountain bike so the extra footprint should be enough for most of what I will be doing.


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 07, 2017 1:00 pm 
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http://ridinggravel.com/components/whee ... b-vs-700c/

Also a read to consider.


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 07, 2017 4:45 pm 
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The thing is to counterweight the whole ride from get go to home.
Not dissect it into sections. That is not how it is in real life.
Most of you guys seem to ride with a stiff fork!?
When so, it's more ideal to have a wider tire with more air cushioning.
It's a matter of adapting a bit to it i think.
Gravel have a lot of loose so a wider contact patch makes sense if you think about it.

I have never been such a tire nerd before as i've becomn riding gravel.
I have over 10 pairs of tires hanging and i try to tell myself to stop buying tires.

I like don't like under inflated tires. I try to find the line where tires are inflate enough to be kind of fast, but not so much they are uncomfortable.
High tpi and softer sidewalls make sense for ride feel.

If anyone would ask, i would say, you should try both 700C and 650B and don't be awkward to experiment with tires and pressure.
As always, personal preferences come in to play.
In the end i also guess it pends on what and where you like to ride.

Be safe guys..

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Posted: Sat Oct 07, 2017 4:45 pm 


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 07, 2017 9:54 pm 
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morganb wrote:
I'm building up an All-Road in the coming weeks and still torn on wheels. I can get an extremely good deal on a set of super light 700C wheels with good internal width, but was originally considering doing 650Bx47 for the bike. Thoughts on the rolling speed with the 650 set up?


With /narrow/ tires it's about the same; I've got a Trek 1000 that I ran with 700x25c tires for about 20 years, eventually swapped to 650b (so I could ride Confreries on it), and then swapped the Confreries out for Schwalbe Ones when they came out in 650x25b.

It's just as fast with 650b as it ever was with 700c (though the BB is now low enough so there's no chance of pedalling through steep corners); I'd imagine that gravel-width tires will work out much the same in that the quality of the tire is the most significant factor in how fast you can push the bike.


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