Wednesday, August 15, 2012

New Shoes

Never underestimate the ability of a different set of tires to transform a bike.  A test bike shows up that is a stiff, racing focused filly.  But it was waaaay over the top harsh and it was killing me.  I was wondering if the burly AM type tires were part of the issue.   A call to the marketing guy for the company confirmed that I could be feeling the tougher casing construction contributing to the beat down. But really, should I bother to swap them?  How big a deal could it be?

However I was not liking the front tire's characteristics in hardback, so just about then I get a box of tires in the mail.  Ok...I am more motivated now.  Time for swappage.  Two new tires later, the difference was amazing.  I expected them to be a bit faster due to the lighter weight and such, but the real surprise was the ride difference.  What was a rolling jackhammer became a still stiff riding, but now fun to rage on racing/fast XC hard tail.  Amazing.

Lesson learned.  It is worth trying different tires to see what works for you and what your riding style agrees with.  Even ride quality will vary from tire model to tire model as I saw in a dramatic way last night.  If you think about it, the tire is your final connection, well, your ONLY connection to the ground.  Getting that right matters.

If your bike is not to your liking, try some new sneakers.  It may surprise you.

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