Big Slicks for Gravel Riding

Especially for light weight issues concerning cyclocross / touring bikes & parts.

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morganb
Posts: 539
Joined: Wed Mar 15, 2017 5:30 pm

by morganb

How do big slicks (650x42 and up) handle off road terrain? I'm waiting for my Carver frame and parts kit to arrive and haven't picked up tires yet. I'm leaning heavily towards the Compass Switchback Hill (650Bx48) to start, and think I'll be fine on dirt roads and gravel, but wondering how it will be when I get into the rougher stuff. Some of the riding I do gets into West Virginia back country terrain and really blown out dirt roads. I know the Slate came stocked with slicks and it seemed like most people were happy with the tires on everything unless it was mud or really loose.

jemima
Posts: 97
Joined: Fri Apr 22, 2011 12:36 am
Location: Perth

by jemima

Lots of variations in a surface. Just came back from a long ride after tubeless mounting Switchback Hill extralights last night. Was on the road mostly but sought out gravel tracks as I came across them. I'm talking fairly hard packed ground with a little bit of loose on top. Over those conditions the tyres were incredible at speed.

Would I take them over the terrain I mount tubeless ThunderBurts for? not sure. Now the terrain is still fairly hard packed but lots of large and loose rocks. I think I'd want to slow down a bit / pick my lines more. As long as the rocks are not too sharp I think they'd be ok.

Those thoughts are dry conditions only.

The following might be helpful:
http://teknecycling.com/big-rides-on-li ... 8mm-tires/

Crappy pic from this morn:
https://imgur.com/mBXFure

by Weenie


Marin
Posts: 2815
Joined: Wed Jan 22, 2014 11:48 am
Location: Vienna Austria

by Marin

Everyone should habe at least 1 set of Panaracer-made (Compass, Grand Bois, etc.) superlight slicks.

NB I'm a Fanboy, I have 4 sets now: 23mm, 30mm, 35mm, 42mm. All totally awesome.

Regarding riding offroad: As long as it's dry / not muddy, slicks rule.

spud
Posts: 654
Joined: Sat Feb 07, 2009 5:52 am

by spud

just my opinion - on most dry off road surfaces, slicks will be fine. when you have soft soil, or a thin layer of scree or fine particles over hard pack, tread with active edges will be better. i've done a fair bit of off roading on a road bike with slick tires and it works fine, so long as you don't push through corners.

morganb
Posts: 539
Joined: Wed Mar 15, 2017 5:30 pm

by morganb

I ended up going with the Compass Baby Shoes (650x42) since until the freeze thaw cycles end in March I'll be mostly on the road and rail trail with this bike anyway and then I'll see how they go off road once it warms up. Thanks for that article jemima and everyone else's opinions here.

Marin
Posts: 2815
Joined: Wed Jan 22, 2014 11:48 am
Location: Vienna Austria

by Marin

Hehe I thought the ground was frozen in the woods... Also on Panaracer 650x42 (Pari-Motos):

Image

morganb
Posts: 539
Joined: Wed Mar 15, 2017 5:30 pm

by morganb

It hasn't stayed consistently cold enough here save a few days to be frozen outside of the wee hours of the morning. Now that we got snow it'll take a bit of a dry period til the ground is frozen but rideable (at least on these tires I would think).

morganb
Posts: 539
Joined: Wed Mar 15, 2017 5:30 pm

by morganb

Also, pic didn't load until after I replied, but rad bike, mine is gonna look similar, ti frame/carbon fork with gumwall tires. I went with pink parts instead of green though. I'll post some pics once I get it finished, waiting for a rear brake adapter.

jfranci3
Posts: 253
Joined: Tue Jul 26, 2016 5:21 pm

by jfranci3

Does it get bouncy on big slicks on the road? Do you get a lot of undampened movement? Going from a spin bike to my 35c tires was a real eye opener, but the feeling went away after a bit.

jemima
Posts: 97
Joined: Fri Apr 22, 2011 12:36 am
Location: Perth

by jemima

jfranci3 wrote:Does it get bouncy on big slicks on the road? Do you get a lot of undampened movement? Going from a spin bike to my 35c tires was a real eye opener, but the feeling went away after a bit.
Last weekend I rode a short segment at about 50km; mashing it on the flats. I did have the pressure down a bit (had just come off some gravel) on the 650x48s, so I did feel a bit of up-and-down and I wasn't concerned with smooth pedal strokes.

I suppose if the pressure in the tyres were more, then there'd be less bounce on the road.

One thing I'll tell you though: get the pressure right for the conditions and its a dream ride.

morganb
Posts: 539
Joined: Wed Mar 15, 2017 5:30 pm

by morganb

Image

Did two very different rides on the bike this week, one pure road ride with some fast riders on fast bikes and one mixed terrain ride by myself with some singletrack. There was ice and snow on the ground and it handled it pretty well, although I had a few times the rear wheel slipped out. I'll have to see how it goes in the dry but still pretty happy with how the Baby Shoes handled some rocky and slick terrain.

JoO
Posts: 47
Joined: Thu May 04, 2017 7:30 am

by JoO

morganb wrote:
Mon Dec 18, 2017 3:33 pm
Marin wrote:Hehe I thought the ground was frozen in the woods... Also on Panaracer 650x42 (Pari-Motos):

Image
It hasn't stayed consistently cold enough here save a few days to be frozen outside of the wee hours of the morning. Now that we got snow it'll take a bit of a dry period til the ground is frozen but rideable (at least on these tires I would think).
What calipers are you using in order to clear these wide tires?
does the frame mounting holes for the calipers need to be special made?

mattyNor
Posts: 277
Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2014 3:18 pm

by mattyNor

morganb wrote:Image

Did two very different rides on the bike this week, one pure road ride with some fast riders on fast bikes and one mixed terrain ride by myself with some singletrack. There was ice and snow on the ground and it handled it pretty well, although I had a few times the rear wheel slipped out. I'll have to see how it goes in the dry but still pretty happy with how the Baby Shoes handled some rocky and slick terrain.
How are you liking that fork?

Sent from my SM-G930W8 using Tapatalk


Marin
Posts: 2815
Joined: Wed Jan 22, 2014 11:48 am
Location: Vienna Austria

by Marin

JoO wrote:
Sat Dec 30, 2017 10:51 pm
What calipers are you using in order to clear these wide tires?
does the frame mounting holes for the calipers need to be special made?
Tektro r559

The frame is my own design, it can take 700x35mm tires with mid reach calipers, and 650b x 47mm with long reach.

by Weenie


morganb
Posts: 539
Joined: Wed Mar 15, 2017 5:30 pm

by morganb

mattyNor wrote:
Sun Dec 31, 2017 6:50 am
morganb wrote:Image

Did two very different rides on the bike this week, one pure road ride with some fast riders on fast bikes and one mixed terrain ride by myself with some singletrack. There was ice and snow on the ground and it handled it pretty well, although I had a few times the rear wheel slipped out. I'll have to see how it goes in the dry but still pretty happy with how the Baby Shoes handled some rocky and slick terrain.
How are you liking that fork?

Sent from my SM-G930W8 using Tapatalk
The fork is great. I will see how the fender mounting works once I decide on fenders, but I don't notice any vibration or flex on the road and it doesn't feel flimsy off road or under braking. The option to run a huge tire up front is nice too.

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