When looking in the archives, using the search "tire" and "patch", I found 2746 entries. I was looking to see how the issue of the area of the tire patch (rubber meets the road) had been covered. Turns out it has been covered very well. But, in the car world, specifically in this month's Car and Driver, a letter to the editor chastised the magazine for suggesting that wider tires offered more contact area. The writer said that tire patch as measured in area is weight of the vehicle divided by pressure of the tire. I'm not sure whether you have to take into account the number of tires in that equation. I found it interesting in that intuitively, if I'm riding a 700x28 at 100 pounds I would think that I have more tire patch than if riding a 700x20 with 100 pounds. Reading the literature, it appears that only the shape of the tire and perhaps tread deformation have changed, but the amount of the tire patch in area is equal. Still, that does seem odd to me. Lou Deeter, puzzled in Orlando FL USA
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