Monday, July 25, 2011

Thrifty Thrashing Tip #4: Ride Your Tires Until They're Bald

Definitely not a bald tire!
I've already written a few posts about inner tubes and inflation, and now the focus of this column moves to the tires themselves. 

Why have I written so many posts on this same area of the mountain bike? Well, tubes and tires are some of the things that will inevitably wear out on a regular basis. They are not intended to last forever. A good frame, for instance, can stand up to tremendous use and abuse and last forever. Tubes and tires, however, will need to be replaced.

Also, with the constantly rising price of oil, the price of rubber has consequently risen since oil is necessary to manufacture it. 

Bike tires are expensive, and they are only going to get more expensive.

If you are truly trying to be a thrifty thrasher, my recommendation is to ride your tires until they're totally bald and they start falling apart. 

Sure, for the last several hundred miles your traction is going to suffer. But since we've covered the fact that you need to be as thrifty as possible and that tires cost money, it's quite probable that you just can't afford to just plunk money down on a brand new tire whenever you want. And remember what we said about picking your battles

There have been times in the past when I have literally run my tires until they were so bald and frayed that I tore a hole in my sidewall... and I wouldn't replace it until I did.

And even when you do have to replace your tires, there are ways to do it on the cheap....

Stay tuned for the next installment in the series!

2 comments:

Anonymous,  July 25, 2011 at 12:22 PM  

I have been riding since '92 on two bikes, a Trek 830 (recently turned to a ss) and a giant Yukon ('08) and have only replaced 2 tires. In fact the 830 still has the original front tire on it. i guess that is thrifty thrashing. Now anyone want to donate their extra saddle to me?

-brianW

Greg Heil July 25, 2011 at 9:19 PM  

Wow, that's impressive!!!

I'd donate one, but I just gave one away and broke another so I'm out of spares....

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Greg Heil is the Editor in Chief for Singletracks.com. He's been writing and publishing online since before blogging existed.

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