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  1. #1
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    Rock & Road Tire Questions

    I am working on a new build that I hope to run the Rock & Road tires on. But I have a couple questions about them.

    1. Anyone using them with mini-vs? They don't *look* terribly tall but the brake cable is low enough that I worry about space. Looking specifically at the TRP cx9s.

    2. Do they require an especially wide rim? I have a set of stans alpha 400s (17mm inner width) and alexrims dc19s (16.3 mm inner width). Hoping to sell one with my old bike, so wondering if I should look for a wider replacement.

    Thanks,

    Alex
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  2. #2
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    Using that wide a tire on a narrow rim, you'll lose contact patch and hard cornering will feel all sorts of squishy. From what I've read, these tires come in at 43c wide. Here's an article from pinkbike that covers the importance of wider rims (though, in the context of tubeless).

    I run 40c Happy Mediums on 19mm (ID) wide rims and am very pleased with the performance.

    Stevil at allhailtheblackmarket runs the R'nR w/ Paul mini-motos.

    I'm looking at the Velocity Synergy or A23 to replace the Delgado cross rims I now have.

    *note: If I had the tire clearance I'd run the R'nR. The Happy Medium is a good contender if you're short on room at the CS.

  3. #3
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    What rims are you running with 19mm internal width? Rim brake 29er? [edit- I'm an idiot didn't see delgado cross there]

    It looks like a23s would give me 17.8mm internal width which is a step up but not sure it would be enough. This suggests the delgado is 18.3 Salsa Delgado Cross 700c, 29er rim dimensions | Freespoke so maybe its not too much smaller? I like that I could set up a23s tubeless.

    Those black paul brakes sure would be a good fit on this build - but I think I'd probably have to delay getting the tires to swing em. Hmmm...

    I found this picture of someone running 28s with fenders and the cx9s that gives me some hope:



    We measured a frame with similar chainstay setup and it looked to have about 50mm of clearance. This bike had longer stays but they will be spaced wide at the BB so I'm hopeful I can get most of that. Just need to figure out brakes
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  4. #4
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    If I can sell the stans wheels with the old bike maybe these would be an option: HED Cycling Ardennes*PLUScl

    I've ridden the non-plus model SL's on a rented road bike and they were terrific. Always wondered how such a wide rim would fare on a cross bike (assume the answer is amazingly well) and the fact that they're tubeless ready is a huge plus.
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  5. #5
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    This seems to suggest 40+ is easily doable on a23s

    Velocity A23 rim and max tire width
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  6. #6
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    pulled the trigger on an a23 wheelset and a set of tires. I missed out on a really good deal on the wheels but still found them cheap enough at biketiresdirect that if they don't work I can include with my old bike when/if I sell it, or sell on their own without taking too big a loss. I'll report back how they work rogbie

    Gonna try my luck with the cx9's too (pauls are just too spendy but arm length looks similar enough to give me some confidence)
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  7. #7
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    I think you will be fine with cx9. Shorter arms than that I would not be sure, but 85mm would work if I had to guess. I am using 95mm arms and they clear 2.1" tires if you want an example, and there is a lot of clearance with 1.6" tires.

  8. #8
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    Re: Rock & Road Tire Questions

    Great info thanks everyone. I'll come back to spread rep once I'm back to a computer, and post some pictures once I get set up for reference
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  9. #9
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    Good luck. I'll probably get a rim of each, the a23 and synergy. I really like the box rim profile of the synergy, and the erd is nearly the same as the delgado.

    As for brakes, I like cantis. So, my advice won't be any help to you.

    Keep an eye on the ebay for used paul stuff. It comes up occasionally.

  10. #10
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    I just checked and as far as tire width goes, the A23 doesn't really have a limit. If you think about it, it wasn't that long ago that guys were running fat MTB tires on 19mm rims. Now, there is one limit to be mindful of, and that's tire pressure. As the tire gets wider, more force is exerted on the sidewalls of the rim.

    What kind of pressure were you going to run?
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  11. #11
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    I have trouble imagining a situation where I would want to run these past 50-55 psi.
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlexCuse View Post
    I have trouble imagining a situation where I would want to run these past 50-55 psi.
    Absolutely no problem, from the data I have it shouldn't be a problem for a ways past that.
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  13. #13
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    Re: Rock & Road Tire Questions

    That's good because the tires got here yesterday and they list 50 as minimum recommended pressure
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  14. #14
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    I run the Happy Mediums anywhere from 35psi-80psi on Delgado Cross rims. I've never had issues with blow-offs or pinch flats.

    I'd assume the RnR is as good with their tolerances. They're made by Panaracer.

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    Yeah they're rated 50-75, I will probably stay between 45 and 65. Don't see myself needing the ultra-low pressures I run tubeless cross tires at with these wheels, but for extended periods of time on pavement I'm sure going a bit higher would be nice.
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  16. #16
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    Oh just one quick afterthought -- with the tubeless ready A23's, you're going to want to use Velotape or something comparable like Stan's (21mm width) and give it two tight winds. Velox or Veloplugs make tire mounting a fair bit more difficult due to the thickness & rim web design.
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  17. #17
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    Velocity recommends against using veloplugs on the a23.

    edit: didn't see your tag line. You know that already.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by rogbie View Post
    Velocity recommends against using veloplugs on the a23.

    edit: didn't see your tag line. You know that already.
    No worries! I should have clarified by saying we flat out don't recommend using them on the tubeless ready A23. On the old ones, no problem. I have seen that *some* people seem to get them to work on the newer rims, but I feel like it's about a 50/50 chance, and there's a better solution out there!
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  19. #19
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    Good to know - how can I tell if the rims are the tubeless ready variant?

    I ordered the prebuilt a23 / shimano 6800 wheelset off biketiresdirect if that helps (Wheel Master Shimano Ultegra 6800/Velocity A23 Wheelset at BikeTiresDirect)
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  21. #21
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    Re: Rock & Road Tire Questions

    Yeah I saw that but they were sold out when I went to order. Between the loyalty points and various discounts BTD is very close in price, and it was really the black 6800 hub I was after (assume the build on these won't last terribly long)
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  22. #22
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    Got the wheels today - they are the US made A23's which if I understand right are tubeless ready. I don't plan to run them tubeless with these tires until I've spent some time on them but its good to know.

    Going to pick up some tape on the way home if I can get there in time, will update with a picture of the front on my jamis fork (with cx 8.4 brakes) if I can make it work.
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  23. #23
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    Re: Rock & Road Tire Questions

    The tube I had was too short in the stem so I couldn't inflate, and I didn't feel like adjusting the brakes to accommodate the wider rims but hopefully this gives an idea of clearance with the trp cx8.4. Think it'd be comparable to the Pauls linked above.

    Rock & Road Tire Questions-uploadfromtaptalk1392080352392.jpg
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  24. #24
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    Contact Bruce Gordon and see if these tires are tubeless compatible before you try and mount them up that way. Sometimes the sealant doesn't play well with rubber compounds.

    Personally, I think tubeless is more of a hassle than it's worth. Between the set-up mess, potential for tire damage, you still have to carry a spare tube for flats. And really, on a tire this size, you can run tubes down around 30psi and not worry about pinch flats; if you're not a ham-fisted rider.

  25. #25
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    Re: Rock & Road Tire Questions

    Good point.

    I tend to agree about tubeless. I have stans wheels now and I've only found one tire that really works tubeless. Its great for racing but not quite as set and forget as mountain bike tubeless. I plan to use these wheels for long mixed terrain rides where reliability is my main concern.
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  26. #26
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    I run them on Open Pro's and they're great. Some guys run 2.2's on Open Pros so I'm not worried.

    They've been great tires on road, dirt, snow and singletracks.

  27. #27
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    Probably should've gone open pros. I think the wide footprint of the a23s might have me getting rid of my Stan's wheels and looking for some HED s or another set of a23s in the long run.

    The tires looked so good mounted up, now to survive the waiting game :-)

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  28. #28
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    Just a quick pic from last weekend. Unusually warm here, so no snow on trails for now. Took advantage. These tires shred pavement and dirt.


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    How is this tire setting it up tubeless? Anybody?

  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by jemlinus View Post
    How is this tire setting it up tubeless? Anybody?
    If you email bruce gordon I'm sure they'd get back to you. I'd be somewhat interested to know as well.

    Quote Originally Posted by phsycle View Post
    Just a quick pic from last weekend. Unusually warm here, so no snow on trails for now. Took advantage. These tires shred pavement and dirt.
    That is one gorgeous cross check. I love the look of any bike with gumwall tires (especially these) but this one looks special. Hopefully when all is said and done my new ride will look half as good
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  31. #31
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    I would venture to guess this tire is not compatible with tubeless sealant. From my experience non-tubeless ready tires don't play well with sealants.

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by rogbie View Post
    I would venture to guess this tire is not compatible with tubeless sealant. From my experience non-tubeless ready tires don't play well with sealants.
    Nonsense...I've been running old school tires from the nineties...tubeless with no problems...not many tires made now, that I like....

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by ladljon View Post
    Nonsense...I've been running old school tires from the nineties...tubeless with no problems...not many tires made now, that I like....
    Correlation... something, something... causation.

    and pics or it didn't happen.

  34. #34
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    I've actually never ran tubeless-ready tires, and have not had issues running tubeless. Not RnR's, but Ardent, various Geax, Purg, Ikon, Rampage, RaRa, and probably a few I'm forgetting. Oh, Knard as well.

  35. #35
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    running old school tires tubeless

    Quote Originally Posted by rogbie View Post
    Correlation... something, something... causation.

    and pics or it didn't happen.
    Specialized Extreme Controls 26X1.7 on the rear...tubeless
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Rock & Road Tire Questions-dscn3268.jpg  


  36. #36
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    Isn't "sealant compatibility" more of a longevity issue than anything else?

    Fat low-pressure mountain bike tires are a totally different story though - pretty much any of those are easy to set up tubeless. Cross size tires are a *lot* more finicky IME. I've had problems with tires that don't fit the rim tight enough tearing off in turns, and also had a bead blow out when pumped up to a highish pressure for a road ride. The rock & road wasn't a terribly tight fit, and the bead didn't seem particularly robust so I probably wouldn't risk it.
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  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlexCuse View Post
    Isn't "sealant compatibility" more of a longevity issue than anything else?
    You are correct. Over time the liquid component of sealant (usually ammonia based) deteriorates the rubber compounds in the tire. This can allow air past the inner casing causing blisters under the tread compound.

    Also, tubeless conversions become more difficult with narrower tires and higher pressures. The dangers are what you described: unseating of the tire bead through burping of air or total release of pressure with the tire coming completely off the rim.

    Thus, ladljon's point about his experience is Moot(s) in this conversation.

  38. #38
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    Got out on the new ride today, this really is one hell of a tire. Rolling resistance felt pretty low on the road considering the size, and it just devoured gravel. Just enough cushioning on chunkier stuff too. a23 feels like a good fit - opens up nicely, and felt more stable than I thought it would at higher speeds (think I was around 50-55 psi).
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  39. #39
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    tubeless

    Running Kenda Kross Supreme 700x35 on rear and Surly Knard 700x41 front tubeless on A23's. Was a hassle to get the knard to seal, but with a little vaseline...all is well. running 27-32 lbs in both on dirt,gravel....50-60lbs on pavement....
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Rock & Road Tire Questions-dscn3283.jpg  

    Rock & Road Tire Questions-dscn3285.jpg  


  40. #40
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    Those green rims are lovely

    I'll be interested to hear how the knard holds up - are you using the 120tpi version?
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  41. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlexCuse View Post
    Those green rims are lovely

    I'll be interested to hear how the knard holds up - are you using the 120tpi version?
    It is a 120tpi, running great so far, on dirt,gravel,pavement, and rocky single track. Wanted to try BG R&R, but needed more mud clearance.

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    Re: Rock & Road Tire Questions

    Rode about 50 miles today on them, and it was almost too much tire most of the time. Means I'll have to mix rougher terrain into my rides

    Lot of tire to crank up hills too though - bet a tubeless knard is a lot lighter and approximately as capable. Have you run the sidewalls into many rocks yet?
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  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlexCuse View Post
    Rode about 50 miles today on them, and it was almost too much tire most of the time. Means I'll have to mix rougher terrain into my rides

    Lot of tire to crank up hills too though - bet a tubeless knard is a lot lighter and approximately as capable. Have you run the sidewalls into many rocks yet?
    They are tough, going to run them thru the rock garden, next week...so far no tears or scars...

  44. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by seely View Post
    Oh just one quick afterthought -- with the tubeless ready A23's, you're going to want to use Velotape or something comparable like Stan's (21mm width) and give it two tight winds. Velox or Veloplugs make tire mounting a fair bit more difficult due to the thickness & rim web design.
    i just mounted a set of 29x1.75 vee rubber vee 12's tubeless on a23's. So far they seem to be holding 40 psi really really consistently but time will tell. I used two layers of stans yellow 21mm tape because thats what i could find locally on a tuesday night. i would suggest trying the velotape from velocity. Because of the deep center channel, the space between the bead hooks is somewhat narrower than 21mm, so the solid yellow color of the stans tape makes it difficult to center. Then by the time you press the tape down to fill the channel, you dont really find out if its centered or riding up the inside of one of the beads untill its pretty much set. I think the clear-ish blue of the velotape might make it easier to set tape up. That, and i think the velocity valves in the velotape tubeless kit might fit a little better in the a23 channel. just my 2 cents.

  45. #45
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    Does anyone know where to source R&Rs in Europe? Saw on the Bruce Gordon website he doesn't offer shipping to Europe...

  46. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wilburtron View Post
    Does anyone know where to source R&Rs in Europe? Saw on the Bruce Gordon website he doesn't offer shipping to Europe...
    I can ship worldwide - just not through our online store. Please send me an email with what you want, quantities and the address - and I will send you a cost for shipping to your country.
    Regards,
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    Bruce Gordon Cycles - The Unofficial Official Blog

  47. #47
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    Rode a hundred miles and change on the r&r today - still a lot to turn up the harder hills but really paid off on the downhill and gravel sections. I was somehow the only person to get a flat, that gave the people on 25c road tires a great laugh ☺

    Thanks for making such a cool tire Bruce!

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  48. #48
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    I was looking for information on something else and came across this: Black Mountain Cycles: New bike ride notes...

    Sounds like he had the rock n roads set up tubeless for about 4 months (as of the last comment) without problems. May try this over the summer.
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    I wouldn't mind going tubeless, either, but I'd like to switch between FireCross and RnR's, so gotta stay with tubes.

  50. #50
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    I set my R&R's up tubeless on Stans Iron Cross rims. They fit quite tight & sealed incredibly well.

  51. #51
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    I am finally retiring the pair I got after about 1400 miles. They probably still have at least a few hundred miles left in the tread but I've noticed them slipping more on roots as the center of the tread wears further. I have another pair waiting that I got in a trade, and also some soma cazaderos that I've been itching to try (ironically, got those from Bruce Gordon's site too ). I had three flats over the life of the tires, all caused by thorns. I think they get caught between the treads and with nowhere to go they eventually get driven into the tire. Still, only got 3 flats over the life of the tires so it wasn't exactly an epidemic. Oddly enough, I never got a flat the half dozen or so times that I rode through glass and felt certain I'd get one. I never tried setting them up tubeless - might the next time, though I also like to switch tires for certain rides so I might not bother.

    They wowed me several times over their life, mostly on rocky downhills that seemed too sketchy to tackle on a "road" bike. But the ride that sticks out the most was a 50 mile ride in February that was about 50% iced over dirt roads. Instead of plowing / salting, the maintenance for these roads is basically just dusting some gravel on the ice (or nothing at all for the sections that are too steep for a vehicle to get up to apply the gravel). I was stunned how secure the tires felt on this surface.

    1400 miles is much better life than I've gotten out of any other offroad capable tires that spend considerable time on pavement. We'll see how the cazaderos compare but I'm guessing I will be back on these in the fall, and certainly by the winter.
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  52. #52
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    Interested in how the Caz' does compared to RnR. My RnR experience was excellent. Only wished for a less buzzy pavement ride (not bad at all, but still could hear that hum), which is why I have been interested in the Caz. Both come with tan sidewalls, which is a plus.

  53. #53
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    As they wore down, the buzz got considerably quieter. Shame that the grip on roots went with it They are still a very capable tire in their current state, rode almost 100 miles of road / gravel / singletrack on Sunday and they felt fine. If I didn't have a bunch of other tires in the garage already I wouldn't even consider switching right now.

    I rode the caz's around a bit in my neighborhood last night and they felt maybe a little faster and definitely didn't buzz, but they were also pumped to like 75-80 psi to get the bead seated. My initial impression is they'll roll a little faster and clear mud a lot better but not corner as predictably on pavement or hardpack (should still do better on those than the firecrosses I've used previously). My big question is how well they are going to do on thick, loose gravel like we see on freshly resurfaced roads. The rock n roads were impossibly good on that slop.

    I will report back once I've got some miles on them.

    I can confirm the tan sidewalls look good, though I don't think they are quite as pretty as the RnR's (I've gotten very attached to that simple red logo).

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  54. #54
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    Rode a solid 30 mile loop with a bit of everything this morning. It was raining for the first hour so that colored my opinions a bit but I wanted to document my thoughts while both tires are fresh in my mind.

    The caz seems to have maybe a little more rolling resistance on pavement, but less air resistance because it doesn't have those unbroken ridges across the tire. Probably a wash overall, but at higher speeds I could see the caz having a slight advantage. There was a slight hum on pavement similar to other cross tires, but nothing like the rock n road, which my friend once described as sounding like a jeep was bearing down on him (this was when the tires were new).

    Grip on dirt and gravel is good, but different. The rock n roads kind of stay on top of stuff and stick to it, while the caz wants to bite into it. Time will tell which of these is better. In very loose gravel the rnr was a lot more confidence inspiring.

    Rode a couple miles of rocky / rooty (at least for that bike) singletrack and volume felt the same (pretty sure they use the same casing so this would make sense). Very comfy.

    I don't think the caz grips large roots as well as the rock n road, but I will have to go back when they aren't wet to make sure. This would seem to fit with my perception its trying to dig into things for grip instead of sticking to them. Grip on rocks was probably a bit better though, contrary to what I'd expect. I think this is because the row of knobs on either side of the centerline has a kind of crosshatch pattern cut into them, so I'd expect this effect to be short lived.

    Did not encounter much mud but what I did didn't gum up the treads at all so thats a good thing.

    I will roll with these until sometime in September, there is a long gravel ride then with a ton of climbing that I like to use the challenge gravel grinders for (mostly so I can still keep up with my friends after mile 80). My hunch is I'll be back to the rock n roads after that. I like the caz so far, but haven't seen anything suggesting they are worth paying a premium over the rock n road (I think I got the pair I have for $75 shipped or something when the Bruce Gordon site was blowing out a ton of tires). If you really hate the buzz, they would probably be a good option though.
    Yeah I only carry cans cause I'm a weight weenie.

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    i have Been riding the RnR on my gravel bike for two months and I love them.
    I also considered as the cazaderos as an option But I finally choose the ROck and road because they seemed to roll better on loose and sand. Also the buzz noise is a little uncomfortable for me But nothing dramatically.

    i need two recomendations about the tires:

    - I am running them offroad at 50 psi (the minimum that bruce gordon recommends) But My weight is only 70kg so maybe I can run them at lower psi without Risk of pinch flat?

    - Im running them with bontrager sealant tubes because I couldnt install them in a tubeless set up. My rims are the dt swiss xr331 tubeless compatible and When pump them the wheels loose all the air for through the beads. Any recommendation to get the tubeless set up?

    Thanks!

  56. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by snchz View Post
    i have Been riding the RnR on my gravel bike for two months and I love them.
    I also considered as the cazaderos as an option But I finally choose the ROck and road because they seemed to roll better on loose and sand. Also the buzz noise is a little uncomfortable for me But nothing dramatically.

    i need two recomendations about the tires:

    - I am running them offroad at 50 psi (the minimum that bruce gordon recommends) But My weight is only 70kg so maybe I can run them at lower psi without Risk of pinch flat?

    - Im running them with bontrager sealant tubes because I couldnt install them in a tubeless set up. My rims are the dt swiss xr331 tubeless compatible and When pump them the wheels loose all the air for through the beads. Any recommendation to get the tubeless set up?

    Thanks!
    The tires are not tubeless compatible, so setting them up will be a bit of a gamble and an experiment.

    I would start with one layer of Stans/Velotape/Kapton (probably ~21mm), and follow it up with a layer of Gorilla tape. Install tire, add sealant, give it a try. Lube the bead with Windex or whatever. You'll probably need a compressor or C02 to seat them the first time. If they will not go, still, I would suggest adding Gorilla tape until they do. I wouldn't go any more than 2, maybe 3 layers of tape though, as you're essentially shortening the sidewall height of the rim as you build up the layers.
    bike dude, velocity employee (this is my personal account)

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    For your other question, I usually keep the rear at at least 45 but have gone into the high 30's on the front when riding offroad (I weigh about 95 kg). I'm sure this increases the risk of a pinch flat but I have never gotten one - the thorns always get through the tire first The cazadero seems very susceptible to punctures as well, which I guess is to be expected (I think they use the same casing). I would love to see one of these offered with the puncture protection layer thats available in the paselas...

    You are right about the Rock n Roads riding better on loose / sand. Where the caz really shines is on the road.

    Thanks for the tips on tubeless seely, I think I've had enough of the small punctures that I'm finally gonna give it a try
    Yeah I only carry cans cause I'm a weight weenie.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AlexCuse View Post
    For your other question, I usually keep the rear at at least 45 but have gone into the high 30's on the front when riding offroad (I weigh about 95 kg). I'm sure this increases the risk of a pinch flat but I have never gotten one - the thorns always get through the tire first The cazadero seems very susceptible to punctures as well, which I guess is to be expected (I think they use the same casing). I would love to see one of these offered with the puncture protection layer thats available in the paselas...

    You are right about the Rock n Roads riding better on loose / sand. Where the caz really shines is on the road.

    Thanks for the tips on tubeless seely, I think I've had enough of the small punctures that I'm finally gonna give it a try
    I should add that on my Paselas on Ailerons, I set them up tubeless with the standard 2 layers of Stans/Velotape and a compressor. It took a couple of tries to get them to hold air, but doing the "stans dance" after popping the bead up eventually got them to seal, and they've held really well for about 2,500 miles now. I tend to be a little generous with the sealant since I'm commuting on them.
    bike dude, velocity employee (this is my personal account)

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    Quote Originally Posted by seely View Post
    The tires are not tubeless compatible, so setting them up will be a bit of a gamble and an experiment.

    I would start with one layer of Stans/Velotape/Kapton (probably ~21mm), and follow it up with a layer of Gorilla tape. Install tire, add sealant, give it a try. Lube the bead with Windex or whatever. You'll probably need a compressor or C02 to seat them the first time. If they will not go, still, I would suggest adding Gorilla tape until they do. I wouldn't go any more than 2, maybe 3 layers of tape though, as you're essentially shortening the sidewall height of the rim as you build up the layers.
    Thanks a lot fro the tips! My rock n roads are mounted tubeless since yesterday.
    Now the problem is that they lost air. Is it normal?
    For example, from yesterday night to this morbing they have lost about 15 psi. And Today during 2 hour riding they have lost from 30 psi to 25 psi.

  60. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by snchz View Post
    Thanks a lot fro the tips! My rock n roads are mounted tubeless since yesterday.
    Now the problem is that they lost air. Is it normal?
    For example, from yesterday night to this morbing they have lost about 15 psi. And Today during 2 hour riding they have lost from 30 psi to 25 psi.
    It's fairly normal. I'm assuming you're running a sealant in the tire (I don't think they would be holding at all if you weren't!)?

    With my Pasela's I went a little generous on the sealant since I'm commuting everyday on them. I found they did leak a bit more at first but s eemed to settle in after leaving them at higher pressure (~60psi) for a night, and topping off the pressure frequently.

    I'm about 5 months into my setup and top them off every other day or every 2 days or so.

    Out of curiosity how are you measuring pressure before and after a ride? I've found that using a pump is inconsistent at best. If I inflate to ~42, pull of the pump, and put the pump back on the valve right away, I'll get two totally different readings. I prefer to rely on a digital gauge if I'm looking to really evaluate the setup.
    bike dude, velocity employee (this is my personal account)

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