More rubber – better protection

The Marin came with Schwalbe Cruiser tyres, the rear one lasted a year (4000 miles) before I replaced it with another.  The front is showing signs of wear but I expect it will last for another 4000 miles.   Six months into the second year, 1500 miles, and the rear was looking ok still.

All was fine until I started to get punctures.  The first time I hit a man hole cover by mistake and wasn’t surprised when moments later I had a flat.  I was a couple of miles from home, on the way to work, so I walked back home and got the train.   Some weeks later, I ran over a large stable in the garden, the tube had no chance and was flat straight away.   Then last month it started to happen, out of the blue a puncture for no real reason.   After the previous puncture I bought a can of expanding foam stuff which is meant to fix punctures without any fuss, letting you get home and replace the tube.   I didn’t use it this time as the tyre stayed up for 5 minutes and I was only a couple of miles from home.   I limped back and got the train.

That evening I fixed the puncture and refitted.  I felt around the tyre and couldn’t feel anything sticking through, so I thought it would be the end of it.   The next morning, just round the corner, another flat.  I cursed myself for not checking the tyre better, I walked home and caught the train…. again.    The evening was all about fixing punctures again, I was surprised that the hole was in a completely different place.  I hadn’t removed the tyre and tube the night previous, so I knew everything was still in the same position.  This time, I took it all off, really inspected it well, and still couldn’t find anything sticking through.

I no longer trusted the tyre , I was a bit surprised with it being a Schwalbe and all that.  When I checked online I found that it was pretty much bottom of the range with minimal protection, maybe something a bit higher up in the range might be an idea.   I started to wonder if with the extra weight, the thin tyre , the high mileage and constant high speed, the tyre was just not coping well.

I opted for a Schwalbe Energizer Plus tyre , rated at 5 out of 7 for protection (the Cruiser tyres are just 2 out of 7) and rated for fast e-bikes.    I found a good price on Amazon and put in the order.   In the meantime I still had to get to work and back and delivery of this new tyre was up to 3 days.   I swapped the tube and tyre off of Tom’s bike (the old Highway bike I had used for commuting for numerous years) and fitted onto the Marin.  The tyre was wider and a bit more knobbly, it didn’t fit well and rubbed against the mud guards.  I let out a lot of air to ease this, which it did a bit.  For 3 days and 60 miles I put up with rubbing and a soft tyre , but I managed to keep of the trains.

The tyre arrived, all folded up, which worryingly meant the metal beading was severely bent causing the tyre to be very much out of shape.  I hoped that it would sort itself out once it was on the wheel and the pressure of the tube pressing against it.   Second worry was having to fit it, I watched videos on You Tube on how to fit such tyre and it looked not too bad, although lots of people said they had huge problems.   As it happened, after putting aside a number of hours for trying and general swearing, I managed to pop it on the wheel.  I didn’t even use any cable ties, just 10 minutes of constant tweaking until it all popped into place.

So now on the daily commuting bike I have similar, if not a lot thinner, tyre as the tourer.   Rated for fast ebikes, I am hoping this will keep me going for a good 12 months.

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