[CR] Tubulars v Clinchers

Example: Framebuilders:Masi
Date: Sat, 30 May 2009 13:19:13 -0400
From: "Greg Arnold" <greg@nofatmusic.com>
To: "classicrendezvous@bikelist.org" <classicrendezvous@bikelist.org>
Thread-topic: Tubulars v Clinchers
Thread-index: AcnhSsB89tYTfXJr9kijo12xVXAVwA==
Subject: [CR] Tubulars v Clinchers

Ahh! The conundrum of logic and language!
> Hi Michael,
> If you have never used anything other than tubulars on your bikes then how
> do you know that nothing else compares with their ride quality ?
> Regards
> Ken Hume
> London, England

Ill leave it to Michael to respond - but I know he's been riding a long time, bought his first few Masi's from Falerio personally, and has had a lot of experience. I'm guessing he, like many of us, had ridden other peoples bikes with clinchers and decided long ago they were inferior rides!

But it brings up a topic I didn't find a lot of archive info on --

I'm interested in is what kind of tires the listers have found to be 'stellar' rides from among the few brand choices left these days.

I am curious because I've been running my own - costly! - test by swapping various sets of wheels on my fav rides to compare. This is primarily because I bought a stunning 63 cinelli last month - completely original except with Spence Wolf clinchers (the horror!) built on 60s hubs with the usual spence wolf touch of soldered spokes. I was told they were built in 1990, so I'm halfway off topic, but I expect a list variance! (since the wheels are on a 1963 SC) My first clinchers ever.

Ive also been a sew-ups only rider all my life, but I must say, with veloflex pave tires these clincher wheels are really tight, ride beautifully, are pretty to look at, look just like low profile tubulars, and I'm told have a reliably long life. I've swapped the wheel set among several 60s and 70s bikes I own, and find them quite nice. I'm 6'2/185 so I ride larger bikes @62-63cm and I guess for even heavier riders/large bikes these clinchers may be a nice alternative.

I have also found Tufo Pro 33s to be bullet proof, very well balanced and consistently made, thin profiled, and lovely. Plus they are cheap. My only gripe is cosmetic - the tan sidewalls oxidize over time and turn almost black. Anyone else have this issue? Or tried cleaning them with any luck? Please let me know how its done!

Next I bought some larger profile vintage Clemente grifo 61s last month to further the experiment. Much larger profile, decent well balanced tires and period correct, handsome, but no great ride improvement.

Finally I have been also riding Gommitalia Platinums. Premium tires, perfect balance, thin profile, very pretty in tan and black, and my top recommendation if cost isn't an issue. They average $100/ a piece.

So - anyone else care to chime in? Would love to know what people are riding these days and why.

Gorgeous day in NYC, I'm off to soak up some road on the Veloflex Paves!

Greg Arnold NYC