Which are the Grippiest Tyres?

Discuss light weight issues concerning road bikes & parts.
Mr.Gib
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by Mr.Gib

JerryLook wrote:
Thu Aug 29, 2019 3:01 pm
I don’t think the pros run any wider than 25mm tubulars. I don’t think there is an advantage to running wider or else they would be doing it.

Edit: except at races like PR where they need more comfort from the cobbles. I think those are 27mm.
I'm guessing you haven't experimented with big and soft. The difference in cornering traction can be massive - depends on the surface. Of course if you are racing you have to optimize for the whole race, not just the descents. At the pro tour level most of the descending roads are really good, so pointless to carry extra weight, added rolling resistance and aero penalty of a big soft tire.
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by Weenie


bm0p700f
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by bm0p700f

The tyres I favour for grip are a list of three.

Continental competition tubular
Victoria pave and presumably its successor thr corsa control tubular
IRC formula pro RBCC tubeless.

Plenty of tyres get close but in the cold and wet these tyres shine.

bm0p700f
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by bm0p700f

I should add dugast paris roubaix cotton. Not many miles on them but they seem to grip well. Proper test comes when the weather turns.

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Calnago
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by Calnago

My favorite wet weather tire is the Continental Competition Tubular. I’m not sure why but the rubber compound just seems to like water. Ha. I have them on my rain bike. They are a bear to mount however, and I would never take one as a spare because of that. For spares some used preglued Veloflex Carbons are what I use.
As for dry weather grip, I don’t know... I’d be inclined to think it has as much or more to do with the road surface than the tire. Is the road dusty? Sandy? Has it been a long time between rains allowing oil residues from cars to build up. Has it just rained after a long dry spell... this can be the worst since the fresh rain tends to mix with the oils that have been building up. Etc etc. so basically I’m going to use caution in any of those conditions as opposed to rely on a false sense of somehow feeling my bicycle tire is really “grippy”. As such, I think road conditions will dictate how aggressive I want to be in turns etc moreso than the actual tire. I definitely prefer a tubular in any turn over a clincher however, regardless of road conditions. What I don’t like is tires with relatively hard rubber and while it’s been a long time since riding one, the Vredestein tricomp clincher comes to mind. It had a comparatively harder center channel of rubber to increase durability, and maybe its faster, but I really didn’t like them for anything but straight ahead for the most part kind of riding.
Last edited by Calnago on Thu Aug 29, 2019 11:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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JerryLook
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by JerryLook

Mr.Gib wrote:
Thu Aug 29, 2019 11:13 pm
JerryLook wrote:
Thu Aug 29, 2019 3:01 pm
I don’t think the pros run any wider than 25mm tubulars. I don’t think there is an advantage to running wider or else they would be doing it.

Edit: except at races like PR where they need more comfort from the cobbles. I think those are 27mm.
I'm guessing you haven't experimented with big and soft. The difference in cornering traction can be massive - depends on the surface. Of course if you are racing you have to optimize for the whole race, not just the descents. At the pro tour level most of the descending roads are really good, so pointless to carry extra weight, added rolling resistance and aero penalty of a big soft tire.
I have bigger tires on my rain bike. Well, they are only 25mm but they measure 27mm.
Yes the comfort of bigger tires with latex tubes is nice, but I prefer the handling of the 23mm tubs on my main bike better.

But in my first post I was responding to the OP’s question. He said he runs 25mm tubular tires and wanted to know which one has the most grip in dry conditions.
And the point of my last post was that I don’t think most people running tubs are running bigger than 25-26mm tires. It’s not a big trend like with clinchers or tubeless.
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Imaking20
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by Imaking20

I think you're likely going to need to take most internet responses with a grain of salt. My time around cyclists has demonstrated that A LOT of cyclists, even the ones who ride their bikes more than they post on forums, are terrible bike handlers. As such, their idea of what corners well is relative to their skillset.

When I was running clinchers, I loved Vittoria open tubulars and S-Works cotton. In tubular form, I think Vittoria pretty firmly takes a backseat to Veloflex. The older Corsas at least wore OK, but I wouldn't praise them for their grip nor ride quality. I've now got the Corsa 2.0 tubular, Corsa 2.0 TLR and Corsa Control 2.0 tubular - and the latter is the only one I'd recommend. I've tried to convince myself the new Corsa are OK but they're about as comfortable as garden hoses and the grip isn't much better. They may roll faster - but otherwise I think they're worse than the original Graphene tires (although the Corsa Control is somehow quite fantastic). Compare this to Veloflex Arenbergs (25mm) and Veloflex Ravens (27mm) which have given me all the confidence needed to do some really, really stupid descending :) Oh, those Veloflex are also lighter and cheaper.

For the record, I've never gotten up hills well but I'm pretty handy on the way down. I basically climb just so that I can descend.
Miller wrote:
Thu Aug 29, 2019 11:46 am
If you really want grip, you need to go wider with lower pressure.
Interesting opinion - especially since he didn't say what pressure he runs ;)
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JKolmo
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by JKolmo

My vote goes to Veloflex service course. Very nice, comfortable and supple with just awesome grip also in wet conditions.

bm0p700f
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by bm0p700f

Some of us can decend to. Dry grip of most tyres is decent. It's the cold wet grip that separates them.

Alexandrumarian
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by Alexandrumarian

Imaking20 wrote:
Fri Aug 30, 2019 12:42 am
.... I've now got the Corsa 2.0 tubular, Corsa 2.0 TLR and Corsa Control 2.0 tubular - and the latter is the only one I'd recommend. I've tried to convince myself the new Corsa are OK but they're about as comfortable as garden hoses and the grip isn't much better. They may roll faster - but otherwise I think they're worse than the original Graphene tires (although the Corsa Control is somehow quite fantastic). Compare this to Veloflex Arenbergs (25mm) and Veloflex Ravens (27mm) which have given me all the confidence needed to do some really, really stupid descending :)
My most memorable (as in fast enough to be almost stupid) descents have been on Arenbergs. For some reason the Ravens did not inspire me too much. I liked the original 25 Graphenes too - not as much as the arenberg but they are faster on the flats.

I recently got a pair of 28 graphene 2.0 and i first i was disappointed, very narrow - 26.5 - for the silly weight, 345 and 355g. Now that i glued them and did 70km (flat) i must say they ride pretty well. Not too comfy but fast enough, solid feeling and the cornering might be the closest to the proverbial "like on rails" that i ever felt. Cant wait to take them to the hills.

Imaking20
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by Imaking20

That's strange, because I feel the exact opposite about my 28mm Corsa 2.0 tubs (which is not to say that either of us are right or wrong). I think they ride like a garden hose and I've felt them slip a number of times in turns. I have yet to find a pressure I'm happy with on them.
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Alexandrumarian
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by Alexandrumarian

They are certainly not too comfy, but not dead either. That I definitly feel about my other wheelset with Conti 5k clinchers and butyl. What struck me first on the new tubs is the bike leaned without effort and followed my lines more easily. This was at 100/95psi, I'm 210lbs. I took out about 10psi because avg speed/W ratio wasn't great on chipseal (I ride/test on a closed 3km loop, car free) and the very nice cornering feel kinda washed away but speed increased. I think I will start again 100 for the first hill ride and see how it goes. I use 100/95 for Arenbergs as well.

Imaking20
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by Imaking20

Oh wow, that's very high pressure for 28mm tires.

I'm only 160lbs. I do 80/85 on Arenbergs and I've played as low as 60/65 on Corsa 2.0 (which was not a good result). I just had back-to-back rides on Ravens, which are fitted to 60mm wheels and Corsa 2.0, which are fitted to 37mm wheels, both at the same pressure - and the Raven combo was markedly more comfortable.
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Alexandrumarian
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by Alexandrumarian

I had settled for about 90/85 on Ravens but those were a true 27, my Corsas are only 26.5, nowhere near 28. I wonder if I got some erroneous (early) batch, could explain the 35% off sale price. Anyway at 100 I am not really bouncing on them, I can see the rear tire spreading when I ride. Much less they would be squirmy especially at the end of a 4h ride (even if they seem to lose the air slower than before)

spartacus
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by spartacus

Are you guys really going through high speed corners fast enough to reach the traction limit of an average road tire? I’m pretty sure I’m not, or at least I hope my gp4000s aren’t going to suddenly let go at 50mph.

Bigger Gear
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by Bigger Gear

I won't add much to what has been said other than wider/lower pressure will make any particular series of tires perform better. Having said that, and living in a very wet part of the world I would rate Conti GP4000 in a 700x25 or 28 as the best all-around tire for puncture protection, rolling resistance and wet cornering. I've never found Vittorias to be inspiring in the rain, and one of my worst crashes was on a wet corner with 700x25 Open All-Weather clinchers at 80/85 PSI.

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