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Discussion Starter #1
First off thanks ahead. I am looking at replacing the ground control tires on my specialized hardrock to improve road riding. Do I need inner tubes? Do you need them with all tires?
 

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The tubes in your current tires are probably okay to reuse, but personally I would go ahead and purchase new ones just in case. Nothing worse than pinching a tube during the installation and not having a spare. If you do order new ones keep in mind there are two different valve stem types. Most likely you have Presta valves.
 

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Deranged Touring Cyclist
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'Vox,

Good idea swapping to more streetable tires if you're mostly riding on pavment. I gained ~1.5-2mph average speed when I swapped my aggressive knobbies for a more pavement-compatible alternative from Kenda. I loved them until I got the new ride, which they don't fit.

When it comes to tubes or tubeless, you have to have special tubeless tires (maybe rims, too? Not sure) for tubeless. I understand you can run a tube in a tubeless tire in a pinch, but not the other way around. I'm sure others have more info - anyone?

I'm with Poolie re: keeping a spare tube around the house, at least. It's VERY easy to puncture your tubes while mounting tires when you're just learning, and killing one tube without an available spare is far from happy-making, especially if you're mounting the tires preparatory to going out for a ride ;-)

Also, since I can't run Slime anymore (Presta valve issue), I actually take 2 spare tubes on rides - I find it's faster and easier to swap a punctured tube trail-side than it is to find and patch the hole. Patching happens @ home if possible. I still carry a patch kit, but appreciate not needing it trailside. The weight of the tubes pays off in convenience when/if needed. Not the right answer for everyone, though.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
newleaf150,

How would I know if my rims require a tube? I dont see any markings on the rim itself and would hate to take the tire off just to check. Also, what model Kenda tires did you run? I saw these and the price is right.

Is there an issue with what tube type to use on the rim?
 

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Even rims designed to allow you to go tubeless generally come with tubes installed. Don't know the year of your bike, but I looked up a 2010 model Spec Hardrock and I see no mention of being tubeless ready -- look for UST Ready. Based on that I'd say there's about a 99% chance you have tubes.

Running tubeless seems like a real pain in the butt to me. One of the major benefits of using tubeless tires is that they will run on much less air pressure without pinching when compared to regular tube tires. With low pressure tires, it will be possible for the tire to make contact with the ground to give better control and traction, especially on side hills and wet or loose trail conditions. That's not something you're going to want riding on the street.
 

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Deranged Touring Cyclist
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'Vox,

Totally with Poolie on the tube/tubeless thing. Well put! The Kenda tires I used were the Kross Plus - link is the first match that came up in a Google search - http://www.biketiresdirect.com/product/kenda-k847-kross-plus-26x195-tire

I ride largely pavement with some hard pack and relatively smooth dirt trails. The tires were great on the paved trail and did the job on hardpack and gravel with some...shimmy at higher speeds in a straight line. The ones you referenced would (I'm guessing) react similarly based on the mostly 'slick' center section of tread. If hardpack/gravel 'shimmy' is an issue, a little tread in the center goes a long way but slows you a bit on pavement. I felt the knobbies on the sides of the Kross Plus tires helped stabilize me but, predictably, only in turns - where I really appreciated it! On-pavement, they're aerodynamic drag - though they do hum nicely through turns at higher speeds ;)

Attaching a pic of my old bike with said tires - we won't go into intended design vs. actual use - I was/am exploring pavement for the first time after an earlier...much earlier...life in the dirt :)

Gen_2012_0414BL.jpg
 

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Premium Member
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Discussion Starter #7
I tell you what there is a lot to take in. I was thinking about upgrades that I can slowly do to.my bike. Bars, tires, and others.

Can I swap my gripshifters w/ brake levers to a different system without changing the de RALLIUERS?
 

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Specialized Fast Trak LK will give you great off road and street performance.
 
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