Choosing the Best Tyre For You

What Width Tyres Should I Go For Given the Way I Cycle?

Hmmm, it’s hard to say but we love to talk about this…

We’d roughly categorise tyre widths as follows:
18-25mm – fast, nippy, and not that stable, so you need to be on your mettle!

28 and 32mm – great mid way options, still zippy (especially 28mm) but a nice chunky solidity to the ride

37mm plus – fatties, still almost nimble if you go for a small tread, but they are chunky, can hold weight, and stable.

So you really just need to think about what you want and try some different ones out.

We'd add that if you're used to wider tyres you would almost certainly be able to learn to control a bike with narrower ones. Practice in a safe place if you need, but you can probably get the hang of it and may enjoy the extra speed.

I want a really tough tyre, what do I want?

We classify ‘tough tyres’ into two ranges - Lean and Chunky

The lean ones have the appearance of standard road tyres, they're pretty light and skinny, but they offer a lot of puncture resistance usually because of some additional kevlar. The chunky ones while sometimes 'specified' as narrow as 25mm are altogether fatter beasts, they are the car tyres or bike tyres, quite heavy and chunky. We believe they offer significantly more puncture resistance but you can imagine it’s a different kind of ride, you need to be happy with something which feels more like 28mm and has a bit more weight. The Marathon Plus - in the chunky group is the last word on puncture protection.

Lean
Continental Gatorskin – we sell these in a range of sizes from 700c x 23mm
Specialiazed Armadillo - similar to the Gator, we don't offer these, sorry
Schwalbe Durano Plus – contact us if you want us to order these
Bontrager AW1 Hardcase Light - again we don't have these but they seem to be pretty similar

Chunky
Marathon plus - the last word in this kind of thing; ridiculously puncture resistant with a big fat chunk of kevlar in them, they also last a long time as well in terms of the tread (like maybe 6,000 miles or more)

Vittoria Randonneur - these are a bare rung down for a considerable financial saving; we sell these for about 2/3 of the price of the Marathon Plus and they are perhaps about ¾ as puncture resistant (maybe more) and similar in terms of their long lastingness. So they’re a very good buy too

Halo Twin Rail – we don’t sell these but hear they are very good. A different kind of look

Bontrager AW1 Hardcase All Weather – this is available down to 23mm, which may be pretty nimble we don’t know, but they are generally a heavier version of the Hardcase Light listed above. We don’t sell these either, but think they are also very good, potentially up there with the Marathon Plus.

Here are two interesting Marathon Plus v Satellite/H2/Hard Cases articles:
http://www.chetwynd.info/puncture_resistant_tyres.htm
http://www.chetwynd.info/reviews/semi_slick_tyres.htm

I want some slick tyres for my Mountain Bike. Any ideas?

Sure, this is our MTB Slick List, it may be a bit dated but we try to update it periodically. We don't have these tyres to hand but can order most in within a couple of days. Just get in touch if you're interested and meanwhile enjoy.

Basic hybrid - sold here for £15 a pair. Decent basic tyre, mid width

Schwalbe City Jet1.95" or 1.5" width, £25 . Get in touch to order. Not that tough, and not massively narrow, but they are slick!

Schwalbe Kojak - much slicker than the City Jet and narrower. They seem tougher too. 1.35" width and , £36 a pair. Photo here. Get in touch to order.

Schwalbe Marathon Plus - Almost impossible to puncture, a bit of grip on, £50 for a pair. Three widths, 26" x 1.35, 1.5 or 1.75. Available here

Michelin Wild 'n' Run - similar to the kojak but has a narrower version available, very slick, these come in 1.4" and 1.1". Details here. £45 a pair, get in touch to order

Continental Contact Sport - Very slick, 1.3", 1.6" and sometimes 1.9". Details here. We can do these for about £40 a pair.

We can add a pair of tubes in whatever size for £5