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Old     (polarbill)      Join Date: Jun 2003       02-09-2010, 1:28 PM Reply   
As some of you may know I signed up with Team in Training to raise money for the Leukemia and Lymphoma society as well as train for an endurance race. I am going to be doing the 100 mile ride around Lake Tahoe in June. I have a bike that I bought slightly used this past August. It is a 2009 Scott Speedster S30(see link).

I am looking to get some gear and upgrade some things since the bike is 100% stock other than I have a set of clipin pedals that I added from my mountain bike. The tires are race tires I think and have no tread design. Since I am a beginner and in the NW I thought I should get some new tire. I think I have decided on the Continental Gatorskin folding tires. Are these ok or is there something else I should look for that is a better value? I would say durability is my main concern.

I also need to get some riding shoes as my buddy just had an old pair that he let me use and I don't think they fit all that great. Should I be sticking with straight road bike shoes or am I fine getting mountain bike shoes? Some of the other people with my team said it doesn't matter too much and the mountain bike shoes are easier to walk in but what are your thoughts? Whatever shoe I get I don't need it to be some ridiculously expensive shoe. I would like to keep it as something that is going to be comfortable but a good value. Are these style clipins fine or should I go with a different style pedal and cleat?
Old     (polarbill)      Join Date: Jun 2003       02-09-2010, 1:46 PM Reply   
For tires I had another one of the riders on my team who is an avid rider say he likes Vredsteins. He didn't tell me what model but I found some good reviews on the Fortezza Road tires and they are $15/ea cheaper than the gator skins.

Those Vreds actually have a better rating as far as reviews go than the gatorskins.

Also, I see the gatorskins have a max psi of 120 on a 23mm tire and the vreds have a max psi of 145 on a 23mm tire. I weigh about 260 lbs right now. Does the max PSI rating make a difference since I will probably need the air pressure a little higher to offset my weight?

(Message edited by polarbill on February 09, 2010)
Old     (magic)      Join Date: Mar 2002       02-09-2010, 2:02 PM Reply   
I've put 1000s of miles on Gatorskins, they are a very puncture resistant tire that still ride nice. They are not as plush as other tires, but they are designed to handle rough conditions without punctures, which they do nicely.

You can still get the older design pretty cheap:

These are the new ones:

You can always to the 25mm wide version and lower the pressure a little bit for a plusher ride.

I like the GP4 Season too:

The GP4 Season ride softer than the Gatorskins but are still pretty good at avoiding flats. The GP4 Seasons are better in really cold (like below freezing) than the Gatorskins. I find the Gatorskins get greasy when super cold, the GP4 Seasons do not.

You don't need sipping or treads on road bike tires, they can not hydroplane (their surface area to psi is not large enough like car tires). The treads are for looks.

Shoes are up to you. I like MTB shoes for the simple reason you can walk without skidding on the cleat easier. Both are comfy when they fit, I've done over a 200 mile one day ride in road shoes and plenty of 100 mile rides in MTB shoes no issues.
Old     (polarbill)      Join Date: Jun 2003       02-09-2010, 2:55 PM Reply   
The gatorskins sound like the way to go. I ride in Seattle most of the time and the roads are crap. It will be nice to have something that I know will hold up. The tires I have now are Hutchinson Equinox and there are only a couple reviews and the reviews say they are horribly slow.

Sean, thank s for the link. That is half the price I was going to pay for those gatorskins.
Old     (oldmansteck)      Join Date: May 2002       02-09-2010, 4:04 PM Reply   
I was going to steer you to buying tires from out of the country as well. Places like probike kit and wiggle seem to have some of the best prices. I have only dealt with probike kit, but shipping was always fast, considering.
Old     (magic)      Join Date: Mar 2002       02-09-2010, 4:09 PM Reply   
I have done tons and tons of miles up and down Hwy202 (North Bend to Redmond/Bellevue/Kirkland) year round on Gatorskins, have also done a lot of gravel trail riding on them to. Only flat I got was from a broken light filament that was stuck in my side wall (bit of glass with a bit of metal wire poking out of it).

Ya, I promote ProBikeKit as often as possible! Their shipping to the Seattle area is pretty quick too, I never bother with priority shipping.

You can also check out, then goto the Coupon forum. In there you will find the current 5% off ProBikeKit code, that usually works on top of the current discounts. So that's nice too.
Old     (polarbill)      Join Date: Jun 2003       02-09-2010, 5:48 PM Reply   
Thanks again Sean. I just ordered a pair of gatorskin 23mm's. I just got last years models but got them for $50 total. I checked the forum you recommended and got 5% off.

I bought a bunch of stuff off as well. Now all I need is to get out and start riding.
Old     (magic)      Join Date: Mar 2002       02-09-2010, 6:23 PM Reply   
The Biketiresdirect stuff ships super fast to the Seattle area which is nice. Between ProBikeKit and Biketiresdirect, a lot of my cycle funds are accounted for!


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