Putting slimmer tires in a frame made for wider tires?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Putting slimmer tires in a frame made for wider tires?

    I am considering getting a mongoose dolomite for the purpose of comparing various width tires. The tires I am hoping to compare are panaracer ribmo @2", schwalbe big apple @2.35", kenda flame @3", origin8 captiv8er @3.5" and whatever stock tires come with the bike all on various 559 rims. I have next to zero experience riding on tires wider than 1.75" but I don't really know what I will like for certain.

    Can anyone imagine a reason why this would not work out?

  2. #2
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    it will work out fine if you buy custom wheels with the wide hubs and narrow rims for those tires.

  3. #3
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    I am subscribing to this thread, because I am curious.

    Sounds like an interesting experiment, but it seems like it will be expensive to conduct unless you plan to build your own wheels.

    FWIW: Dolo's have 190mm rear spacing.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by bowlofsalad View Post
    I am considering getting a mongoose dolomite for the purpose of comparing various width tires. The tires I am hoping to compare are panaracer ribmo @2", schwalbe big apple @2.35", kenda flame @3", origin8 captiv8er @3.5" and whatever stock tires come with the bike all on various 559 rims. I have next to zero experience riding on tires wider than 1.75" but I don't really know what I will like for certain.

    Can anyone imagine a reason why this would not work out?
    of the tires you've mentioned, only the Captiv8ers will fit on the Dolomite rims, which means you'll need to spend considerably more than the original purchase price on additional rims. i'm not sure what you hope to accomplish by your "test."

  5. #5
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    Re: Putting slimmer tires in a frame made for wider tires?

    Quote Originally Posted by bowlofsalad View Post
    I am considering getting a mongoose dolomite for the purpose of comparing various width tires. The tires I am hoping to compare are panaracer ribmo @2", schwalbe big apple @2.35", kenda flame @3", origin8 captiv8er @3.5" and whatever stock tires come with the bike all on various 559 rims. I have next to zero experience riding on tires wider than 1.75" but I don't really know what I will like for certain.

    Can anyone imagine a reason why this would not work out?
    Waste of time and money.
    You will learn little other than too narrow a tire on too wide a rim does not work well.
    mtbtires.com
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by shiggy View Post
    Waste of time and money.
    You will learn little other than too narrow a tire on too wide a rim does not work well.
    He is planning to use different rims.
    Quote Originally Posted by bowlofsalad View Post
    all on various 559 rims.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by rex615 View Post
    He is planning to use different rims.
    And he's going to discover what? How different tires handle on a POS bike? i still don't get the point of the experiment; using a garbage platform as the basis of the experiment is going to yield questionable results, unless the intent is to see how the different tires function on a junk frame and groupo.

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    Re: Putting slimmer tires in a frame made for wider tires?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gigantic View Post
    And he's going to discover what? How different tires handle on a POS bike? i still don't get the point of the experiment; using a garbage platform as the basis of the experiment is going to yield questionable results, unless the intent is to see how the different tires function on a junk frame and groupo.
    Exactly.
    Plus other wheelsets that would fit the bike will each cost way more than the bike.
    mtbtires.com
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by shiggy View Post
    Exactly.
    Plus other wheelsets that would fit the bike will each cost way more than the bike.
    heck, the hubs alone would cost more than the entire bike. Spit-shining a turd...

  10. #10
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    But at least the thread has been entertaining so far.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by dirtyoffroad View Post
    it will work out fine if you buy custom wheels with the wide hubs and narrow rims for those tires.
    I plan to build the wheels myself using rims and hubs of appropriate inner widths.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gigantic View Post
    of the tires you've mentioned, only the Captiv8ers will fit on the Dolomite rims, which means you'll need to spend considerably more than the original purchase price on additional rims. i'm not sure what you hope to accomplish by your "test."
    I've got next to no riding experience in tires wider than 1.75". My goal is to determine widths that are acceptably comfortable on various routes and speeds I take to determine an optimum amount of comfort. I've been using a full suspension bicycle for a year or so, it's fairly comfortable but I suspect I could avoid the idea of using spring or air based shock suspension and purely going with wider tires. Tires of various widths have different air volumes, the pneumatic tire acts like a large piece of suspension, the skinny tire will have better aerodynamics, but the wider tire should have better rolling resistance and ride more comfortably.

    To rephrase, my test is to determine if I can completely replace the idea of using various forms of suspension purely with wider tires. The goal is to attain an alternative to costly, less reliable and less functional means of adequate shock dampening.

  12. #12
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    I wouldn't buy a bike for this purpose.

    I'll tell you straight away that completely replacing suspension with wider tires is possible. On very rocky and rooty trails it will slow you down and won't be as comfortable, but for anything else a rigid bike will be just fine. It's a matter of preference whether you'll find a gravel grinder to be enough or if you should go for proper MTB width tires. If your routes are rough, even a 29+ or fat bike might be the ticket, but with those you can throw any wish of aerodynamics out of the window.

    What bikes do you ride at the moment and is it possible to try larger tires on them first? Are you looking to buy a new bike but want to figure out how wire tires you should be able to fit?

    I think a far more sensible approach would be to test-ride a few bikes to see how you like them.

    Also, pay attention to tire pressures. It's a big part of the comfort you can get with wide tires.

  13. #13
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    How many wheelsets do you intend to buy for this little experiment of yours? By my figuring, you are going to need at least 3 wheelsets in total. You MIGHT be able to pull off 2 wheelsets total, but certain tire/rim combinations will either not work at all, or ride like crap, depending on the rim widths you use.

    How much do you think you can get away with spending for this project? Do you realize how much you'll have to spend on just spokes for a single wheel build? Have you priced out the hubs you will need, and the rims you intend to use?

    Just buy a bike, choose a tire that fits your riding style and surface conditions, and then ride it.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by bowlofsalad View Post
    I plan to build the wheels myself using rims and hubs of appropriate inner widths.

    To rephrase, my test is to determine if I can completely replace the idea of using various forms of suspension purely with wider tires. The goal is to attain an alternative to costly, less reliable and less functional means of adequate shock dampening.
    if you want an alternative to "costly, less reliable and less functional means of adequate shock dampening (sic)," you're not going to find it on a $250 walmart bike and tires are not your solution as they provide almost zero damping. can we assume that by your quote that "you've got next to no riding experience in tires wider than 1.75" that you've only ridden department store bicycles? if so, those bikes also provide almost zero shock damping. i recommend that you go to a local bike store and test as many bikes as they will let you; just ride bikes, you're thinking about it too much.

  15. #15
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    Re: Putting slimmer tires in a frame made for wider tires?

    No tire provides any damping of any sort.

    Also, its almost always a bad idea to spend money "upgrading" a walmart bike. Don't do it.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by ultraspontane View Post
    No tire provides any damping of any sort.

    Also, its almost always a bad idea to spend money "upgrading" a walmart bike. Don't do it.
    Yes, they do actually. If they didn't, there would be no such thing as rolling resistance. Oscillations in the tire caused by bumps and stuff are minimally damped by friction in the rubber of the tire and you could also argue that the compression of the air inside isn't entirely adiabatic.

    But yes, the damping from a tire is practically nothing compared to the damping provided by an actual damper in suspension.

  17. #17
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    Why would you want a fat bike for this purpose? Just buy a inexpensive road or cross-bike and save yourself some money. You can find something to ride on gravel or pavement for a lot less that two other wheelsets. IMHO

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