Author Topic: Any worthwhile alternatives to Marathon Supreme for a fast tourer?  (Read 1977 times)

At least one of the 32mm folding Marathon Supreme tyres on my Hewitt Cheviot tourer is starting to be on it's way out, though it's give good service. I've been very happy with these tyres generally, they seem reasonably durable and puncture proof, the ride feel is pretty good (for a touring tyre, much nicer than Marathon Plus tyres, which I absolutely hated), the grip seems okay in the wet, they're easy to get on and off my DT Swiss TK540 rims and I can maintain a reasonable speed on them without excessive effort, but before I just go and buy another pair, are there any other tyres in market now also worth considering?

The bike is currently used as a daily commuter, for fast club runs in all weathers, and for (occasional) light-medium (not "expedition" style) touring on roads and cycle paths.

I'd potentially be willing to sacrifice a little in durability for better performance, because  I am using it now for club runs, so is there anything else worth considering that would be a bit faster, but not too fragile? Wouldn't want to go skinnier than 30mm for this bike, though.

Have been looking at the Challenge Strada Bianca (30mm) and Compass Stampede Pass (32mm), possibly even Continental Grand Prox 4 Season (32mm)?

NB: *not* tubeless, please!
Old enough to know better, but young enough to do it anyway

Re: Any worthwhile alternatives to Marathon Supreme for a fast tourer?
« Reply #1 on: June 12, 2019, 02:20:35 pm »
Voyager Hypers are similar tyres, possibly not as puncture-proof, but cheaper.

Never seen rolling resistance tests, but I would say that Paselas are worth considering in wider sizes.

<i>Marmite slave</i>

Re: Any worthwhile alternatives to Marathon Supreme for a fast tourer?
« Reply #2 on: June 12, 2019, 02:41:02 pm »
Also consider a different tyre on the front, there is no law that they have to be a matched pair. My Hewitt tourer in Audax mode has a 32mm Supreme on the back and 28m GP4S on the front, in the rare event it goes into touring mode the supreme transfers to the front and a 35mm standard Marathon goes on the rear.
I think the Supreme are great tyres, when I've found something nicer it's turned out to be more than a little durability I've given up for it, when I tried a GP4S on the back it lasted less than half the time.

Re: Any worthwhile alternatives to Marathon Supreme for a fast tourer?
« Reply #3 on: June 12, 2019, 02:46:57 pm »
Also consider a different tyre on the front, there is no law that they have to be a matched pair. My Hewitt tourer in Audax mode has a 32mm Supreme on the back and 28m GP4S on the front, in the rare event it goes into touring mode the supreme transfers to the front and a 35mm standard Marathon goes on the rear.
I think the Supreme are great tyres, when I've found something nicer it's turned out to be more than a little durability I've given up for it, when I tried a GP4S on the back it lasted less than half the time.

That's certainly something to consider. I've also considered actually having a seperate entire *wheel* for the front, just for use for club runs and other fast rides, as have a spare NOS 32h Campagnolo Chorus front (-only) hub (long story) that I could get a wheel built-up with (possibly using the same DT Swiss TK540 rims), which should be less draggy and lighter than my normal front wheel, that has a Schmidt SON dyno hub... If doing that, the front could even potentially have something racier like a GP5000...
Old enough to know better, but young enough to do it anyway

ElyDave

  • Royal and Ancient Polar Bear Society member 263583
Re: Any worthwhile alternatives to Marathon Supreme for a fast tourer?
« Reply #4 on: June 12, 2019, 03:17:25 pm »
I use 28mm GP4S on both my S40 touring recumbent and Giant roadbike, both used on audaxes to 200km.  I'm very happy with the robustness and speed of them, woudl go up to 32mm if clearances allowed, for a bit more squashiness
“Procrastination is the thief of time, collar him.” –Charles Dickens

mcshroom

  • Mushroom
Re: Any worthwhile alternatives to Marathon Supreme for a fast tourer?
« Reply #5 on: June 12, 2019, 05:02:48 pm »
I got a bike recently that was fitted with Continental Grand Sport Extra tyres. The ones I have are 28mm, but they also come in 32 mm flavour. I've yet to puncture them and find they roll nicely.

Also I have some 32mm Bontrager R3s which I used through most of last year on my tourer before switching down to 28s which fitted under my narrow guards better. They definitely feel quick and comfortable. I had a few puncture problems early on with the rear, then did the best part of 500 miles touring on them in the autumn without any problems at all, though they look a little more cut up than I would have expected.

Also, Vittoria Randonneur Pro tyres seem to be reasonably quick in 32mm folding form, but the ride feels a bit lifeless for some reason.
Climbs like a sprinter, sprints like a climber!

Cudzoziemiec

  • Dormant but requires tea
Re: Any worthwhile alternatives to Marathon Supreme for a fast tourer?
« Reply #6 on: June 12, 2019, 05:17:23 pm »
I had Vittoria Randonneurs in 26" form and I don't recall any punctures but I'd agree they were rather lifeless. Didn't grip that well either. Vittoria Rubino are nice, roll very well and few punctures, but they're only available sporadically and I'm not sure they're even made in 32mm.
At some point in the ride, you might find yourself in Osaka with Spanish speakers where you had expected Edinburgh talking Greek. This does not mean you are lost, or even off route.

Re: Any worthwhile alternatives to Marathon Supreme for a fast tourer?
« Reply #7 on: June 12, 2019, 07:39:28 pm »
I was riding 35c Vittoria Hypers for Audaxing and finding them absolutely fine. Due to bike theft I'm now limited to 28c max. To cheer myself up a little I fitted a pair of 28c GP5000 and am liking them very much even though it's early days (500km ish). They are available in 32c.

Re: Any worthwhile alternatives to Marathon Supreme for a fast tourer?
« Reply #8 on: June 12, 2019, 09:50:06 pm »
I was riding 35c Vittoria Hypers for Audaxing and finding them absolutely fine. Due to bike theft I'm now limited to 28c max. To cheer myself up a little I fitted a pair of 28c GP5000 and am liking them very much even though it's early days (500km ish). They are available in 32c.

I'm sure the GP5000s are very nice, but perhaps too fragile for everyday commuting/shopping etc. use (or touring?). Hence why I was thinking of the GP 4 Seasons as a sort of compromise
Old enough to know better, but young enough to do it anyway

IanN

  • Voon
Re: Any worthwhile alternatives to Marathon Supreme for a fast tourer?
« Reply #9 on: June 12, 2019, 10:21:50 pm »
Never seen rolling resistance tests, but I would say that Paselas are worth considering in wider sizes.
They do roll quite well, but the sidewalls are very thin. With a sudden puncture, the sidewall can be trashed by the time you've stopped the bike.  :(

Re: Any worthwhile alternatives to Marathon Supreme for a fast tourer?
« Reply #10 on: June 12, 2019, 10:42:33 pm »
I'm happy with Paselas, currently on some new* Pasela PT 32mm (amber), which weigh ~400g each; that's 270g lighter than my heavyweight Schwalbe Delta Cruiser+ 32c.  Decent grip, comfy esp at lower pressures, supposed to be low rolling resistance, though I've not seen any tests/comparisons either.  They coped well with New Forest track the other weekend too.  My usual 28mm Paselas are having a well earned rest.   Plan to add a section of the old 32c tyre as a tyre boot, to my kit.

* Amazon £23 each.

edit.  I looked at Conti4Seasons, but didn't like the ~£35+ price.  GP5000s £ :o
Destroying rainforest for economic gain is like burning a Renaissance painting to cook a meal.  EOW.

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Any worthwhile alternatives to Marathon Supreme for a fast tourer?
« Reply #11 on: June 12, 2019, 11:34:47 pm »
Never seen rolling resistance tests, but I would say that Paselas are worth considering in wider sizes.
They do roll quite well, but the sidewalls are very thin. With a sudden puncture, the sidewall can be trashed by the time you've stopped the bike.  :(

That's an aspect of tyres in a touring context I hadn't really given much consideration to.  You'd want to be carrying a spare.
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

Re: Any worthwhile alternatives to Marathon Supreme for a fast tourer?
« Reply #12 on: June 13, 2019, 01:02:16 am »
PX have some 33mm jack brown tyres (made by panaracer) which ought to be a pretty lively tyre for touring on.

cheers

Re: Any worthwhile alternatives to Marathon Supreme for a fast tourer?
« Reply #13 on: June 13, 2019, 09:09:32 am »
Never seen rolling resistance tests, but I would say that Paselas are worth considering in wider sizes.
They do roll quite well, but the sidewalls are very thin. With a sudden puncture, the sidewall can be trashed by the time you've stopped the bike.  :(
Um, yes, but they are strong.

Pasela sidewalls contain a lot of thread.
Some manufacturers put a fair amount of rubber in a sidewall and very little thread.

You can get a cut or puncture in a high-thread-count tyre and the cut doesn't spread. Same cut in just rubber and it splits and isn't very patcheable.
I've had this happen. Continentals are particularly prone to this, especially with the cheaper tyres in the range.

Never had a big blowout with paselas, but only done high mileages with the fatter versions (26x1.5") at lower pressures. I found that the 700cx28mm wore out disappointingly fast.
<i>Marmite slave</i>

Re: Any worthwhile alternatives to Marathon Supreme for a fast tourer?
« Reply #14 on: June 13, 2019, 09:31:04 am »
depends what you mean by 'strong'.  Skinwall tyres often have sidewalls that are easily gashed accidentally and worse yet can all too easily suffer various forms of degradation. Panaracers appear to be made of a fabric that is susceptible to UV degradation. The Jack Browns are offered with a black sidewall option and I would presume this slows the rate of UV degradation down.    Depending on how much weather is likely to be seen, I'd argue that some tyres are more suitable than others; I certainly wouldn't use several types of skinwall tyre on a machine that sees daily use.

cheers

bludger

  • Randonneur and bargain hunter
Re: Any worthwhile alternatives to Marathon Supreme for a fast tourer?
« Reply #15 on: June 13, 2019, 10:09:11 am »
https://www.planetx.co.uk/i/q/TYVITREVG/vittoria-revolution-g-graphene-700c-wired-tyre

I have used these for just under two years for deliveroo in 28mm. Not one stoppage. The grip is good. They are heavy (590g each) but that doesn't bother me. I'm going to get another set in 32mm for my ride to Spain in autumn. Wire bead only so no tubelessness but they are also very easy to fit.
YACF touring/audax bargain basement:
https://bit.ly/2Xg8pRD


Re: Any worthwhile alternatives to Marathon Supreme for a fast tourer?
« Reply #16 on: June 13, 2019, 10:13:32 am »
no flints where you are then?

cheers

bludger

  • Randonneur and bargain hunter
Re: Any worthwhile alternatives to Marathon Supreme for a fast tourer?
« Reply #17 on: June 13, 2019, 10:35:17 am »
Plenty. But still no stoppages.

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1-cnfx92SYgXuTfjSa9xDfO8umxgzDqkL/view?usp=drivesdk

The tread is a lot shallower than the photos make it look.
YACF touring/audax bargain basement:
https://bit.ly/2Xg8pRD


Re: Any worthwhile alternatives to Marathon Supreme for a fast tourer?
« Reply #18 on: June 13, 2019, 10:52:23 am »
depends what you mean by 'strong'.  Skinwall tyres often have sidewalls that are easily gashed accidentally and worse yet can all too easily suffer various forms of degradation. Panaracers appear to be made of a fabric that is susceptible to UV degradation. The Jack Browns are offered with a black sidewall option and I would presume this slows the rate of UV degradation down.    Depending on how much weather is likely to be seen, I'd argue that some tyres are more suitable than others; I certainly wouldn't use several types of skinwall tyre on a machine that sees daily use.

cheers
Brucey, is that a guess, or based on experience?

I'm citing experience. I was doing 200-250 miles a week on panaracer paselas, year round, for 2 years. Never a single sidewall blowout. Prior to that I had two continentals sidewalls blowout and a michelin.
<i>Marmite slave</i>

fuaran

  • rothair gasta
Re: Any worthwhile alternatives to Marathon Supreme for a fast tourer?
« Reply #19 on: June 13, 2019, 02:21:16 pm »
Pasela are also available with black sidewalls if you care about that.

Or try the Panaracer Ribmo. I think they are a more similar style to the Marathon Supreme, especially in the wider sizes. Seem quite durable, pretty tough sidewalls, though maybe not quite as fast.

Re: Any worthwhile alternatives to Marathon Supreme for a fast tourer?
« Reply #20 on: June 13, 2019, 06:47:25 pm »
depends what you mean by 'strong'.  Skinwall tyres often have sidewalls that are easily gashed accidentally and worse yet can all too easily suffer various forms of degradation. Panaracers appear to be made of a fabric that is susceptible to UV degradation. The Jack Browns are offered with a black sidewall option and I would presume this slows the rate of UV degradation down.    Depending on how much weather is likely to be seen, I'd argue that some tyres are more suitable than others; I certainly wouldn't use several types of skinwall tyre on a machine that sees daily use.

cheers
Brucey, is that a guess, or based on experience?

I'm citing experience. I was doing 200-250 miles a week on panaracer paselas, year round, for 2 years. Never a single sidewall blowout. Prior to that I had two continentals sidewalls blowout and a michelin.

If you are doing that mileage then you might expect to wear the tyres out before the sidewalls degrade. Otherwise this sort of thing is not uncommon;



cheers

IanN

  • Voon
Re: Any worthwhile alternatives to Marathon Supreme for a fast tourer?
« Reply #21 on: June 13, 2019, 08:23:58 pm »
They do roll quite well, but the sidewalls are very thin. With a sudden puncture, the sidewall can be trashed by the time you've stopped the bike.  :(

Opinions about tyres are always subject to anecdata. With 28mm Paselas, I've had a sidewall blowout (my fault, unplanned jump off curb from a cycle path to road) and Mrs N destroyed the sidewalls after a puncture rolling downhill (she pushed the bike a few 100 m home unladen, but I can't verify how far she rolled before stopping...)

I gave up on GP4s' after three flats in 400km. Two thorns and a bit of wire. Bad tyres? No, bad luck.


Re: Any worthwhile alternatives to Marathon Supreme for a fast tourer?
« Reply #22 on: June 14, 2019, 07:58:11 am »


If you are doing that mileage then you might expect to wear the tyres out before the sidewalls degrade. Otherwise this sort of thing is not uncommon;


I think we can agree that 'durability' and 'longevity' are two different characteristics, yes?

Depends what the OP is after.
<i>Marmite slave</i>

Re: Any worthwhile alternatives to Marathon Supreme for a fast tourer?
« Reply #23 on: June 14, 2019, 08:15:04 am »
Its not happened to me but in fairness there have also been instances of pasela sidewalls going out at low mileages and fairly quickly too. I (and many others) have been slightly baffled by such reports; the only way it could fit in with (say) the UV degradation hypothesis is if the tyres have been badly stored. Otherwise there has to be  some other environmental factor at work or bad QA in the manufacture of the tyres.

cheers

Cudzoziemiec

  • Dormant but requires tea
Re: Any worthwhile alternatives to Marathon Supreme for a fast tourer?
« Reply #24 on: June 14, 2019, 08:39:00 am »
I've experienced odd delamination of GP4S, both tread and the corresponding place on the inner carcass flaked off, causing a blowout; but there was no cut all the way through the tyre. That was a couple of years ago but earlier this week I noticed a thread pulling out of the sidewall of another GP4S, possibly it got cut by riding along a stony track at the weekend. That tyre is fairly new. The front wheel of same bike has a Rubino, much older, still in good condition apart from tread wear. And the odd thing is the Rubino's are (when you can get them at all) about half the price of GP4S!
At some point in the ride, you might find yourself in Osaka with Spanish speakers where you had expected Edinburgh talking Greek. This does not mean you are lost, or even off route.