Note: Sorry about the dearth of posts. I’ve got a lengthier one in the works.
So yesterday was an island of great cycling weather in between two crappy days. I left work early in order to get in a good 2 hour-plus ride in lovely Vischer Ferry. I get home and notice I have a flat on my rear tire. Ugh. I’m no wrench but I can repair a flat.
Now, I’ve seen competitions (on You Tube anyway) of people changing out a tube in under a minute. You will notice I don’t appear in these videos. I take my time to remove the old tube and try to locate the failure. After wrestling with it for what felt like 20 minutes I find that the failure was a puncture through the sidewall. Of my Continental Gatorskins.
Aren’t these supposed to be the tires with awesome sidewall protection? I haven’t had a puncture flat in 5 years. Add this to the lame road feel of these tires and I will never buy them again. In fact, the tire that replaced it on my bike is an old GP4000 front tire that was destined for the trainer as a rear wheel beater. Well, it’s getting pressed into service about a month early.
If you’re interested, the GP4000s have a much livelier road feel and I run them at about 10psi lower than the Gatorskins. I guess there’s a reason that the GP4000s are a go-to model for so many riders. They WILL be on my bike come next spring.
P.S. – the latex gloves I keep in the garage for this type of bike work – especially anything that involves fiddling with the chain – are a great idea. That black grime that can get on your skin does not wash away easily.