Thursday, May 17, 2012

Things I Cannot Afford Right Now:

A new rear tire (I'm hoping to go back to the Bontrager Race-Lite Hard Case) and Flickr Pro. You can only see the last 200 pictures now, and this Vittoria Randonneur's days are numbered. It served me really well, though.


Drew said...

I have the Bontrager Hard Case (not Race-Lite) and haven't had a flat in 2 years. However, the rubber has started to come off similar to yours. Noticed on the ride last night I was just rolling on the inner liner, which to me was impressive but probably rather dangerous. So I'm in the same boat. Not a great end for KC Bike Week.

Noah said...

I generally get 5,000+ miles out of the Hard-Case on the back. They last even longer on the front. Usually, I'll just buy one at a time, move the front tire to the back, and keep going that way, because the front's more important for control.

When I tore the tread off the rear tire (skidding to unsuccessfully avoid running into the deer almost two years ago), Karen gave me this Vittoria used. I've now logged about 2,000 miles on it after I got it. I'd bet the Hard-Case up front has close to 8,000 miles on it now, and it's still in decent enough shape to use out back.

Mike Hendricks said...

How expensive as these tires, and should I get them for my bike? Just bought a pair of Giant tires for close to $30 apiece. But I don't expect them to last me long when commuting 16 miles five days a week

Mike Hendricks said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Noah said...

The Vittoria Randonneur runs around $30 locally. The Bontrager Race Lite Hard-Case is closer to $45 last time I bought one.

These vittorias are 28mm wide with a very light tread and a somewhat soft compound. Their max pressure is 85 PSI. They handle sand, dirt light snow and water extremely well. They work on gravel just fine without getting too squirrelly, but I prefer wider tires for that. On the road, they grip well and they're comfortable to ride on, but they feel a bit sluggish to me. More importantly, my full-coverage fenders won't fit on the bike with them. They wear faster than the hard-case tires, but have the same great resistance to punctures.

The Bontrager Hard Case tires I use are 700x25. They fit under my full-coverage fenders. They're extremely durable, with a life of 5,000-8,000 miles not being uncommon on my bike. I run them at their maximum pressure of 120 PSI. On my aluminum frame bike, this makes for a bit rougher ride. Their compound is harder, and they're a slick with textured, softer material to either side of the center. They are not as grippy, but they're fully capable even on wet pavement. Just watch out for slippery manhole covers, metal plates on the road or railroad crossings when it's raining.

Steve Williams said...

I have also been using the vittoria randonneurs for about 1500 miles. Noah is spot on with his review. I have only had one or two punctures, and that is commuting and rec rides, mostly on streets. I liked them enough that after a couple of months I bought two extra to have ready. I have just recently developed a flat spot on rear tire, and will rotate them soon. I run the rear at 90 and the front at 75, and weigh about 155 plus a 39 lb bike fully loaded.

Ben said...

I was a very big fan (figuratively and literally) of the Bontrager HardCases I had on my Trek as well. Great tires that wore like steel and resisted even the best attempt at puncture. They didn't ride too bad either, compared to other I've used.

Now I run (really) big tires - 700x40c - so I've been using Schwalbe. I've had two sets of Marathon Crosses that are awesome tires, but wear a bit fast and aren't up to obstacles. Switched to the Marathon Plus last year and they probably have 1,000 or more miles on them with no perceptible wear yet. Very heavy, sluggish, but they also ride like buttah.

That said, I'd go back to the Bontragers in a heartbeat.

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