Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Condensed, comprehensive Greentyre review

...also for key words: green tyre tire

Since so many people land on this blog because they googled "Greentyre review" I have taken the liberty of combining the two previous posts on this subject and editing out the superfluous content (and for those who don't have the patience for even this, just be advised not to buy them).

Here are the reviews as they appeared chronologically:


The maiden voyage went poorly. A perfectly true wheel came untrue before I even made it up a hill. So the next day I trued the wheel on the bike and then tightened each nipple an extra ½ turn. That evening I gave the bike another test ride. By the time I got home, the wheel was again a bit wobbly. After such a thorough tightening, I just knew that the tires had to be the cause. Which was part true. The actual cause was that the spokes had too much room to move up and down since I was running a double-layered rim with a solid tire. I found a suitable single layer rim, and spent part of Sunday rebuilding the wheel

Sunday evening, I took the bike out on the first actual commute. This time, everything stayed true. Thus, I was finally able to pay attention to how the solid tires actually perform. They were definitely not awful. They are substantially heavier than pneumatic tires. However, since I was riding such a light bike, it was hardly an issue. Rolling resistance on the other hand, made a huge difference. Changing between my various bikes usually makes a difference of 1 to 2 MPH in my cruising speed. But this bike, with these tires put me down at least 5 MPH. On the plus side, though, what time I lost in speed I likely made up for by taking the most direct route to work, which is coated with a thick layer of broken glass. Plus, on the ride home from work Monday morning, I stopped for a drink and this gave me the opportunity to impress folks by lodging darts into my tire. Nevertheless, it is looking like I will be switching back to normal winter tires at some point. The other downside to these is their stiffness. They allow you to feel everything on the road that is bigger than a grain of sand. Had I chosen a thinner model with a higher PSI equivalent, I probably could have solved the rolling resistance problem, but the stiffness would probably have given me calluses. All in all I would say these tires are ideal for a light weight commuter bike that has lots of suspension; I would highly recommend them if that is what you are going to put them on.


A second review of Greentyres: I had put the tires on my bike last night so that I could test them again on my commute to work. I wanted to see if the needless worry and tool-packing associate with pneumatic tires could outweigh all the downsides of Greentyres. If the tires worked out this time around, I'd use them all weekend for my trips. In my first review, I suggested that they were “ideal for a light weight commuter bike that has lots of suspension”. However, now that I've gotten used to normal tires on the bike that they were initially tested on, things have changed. Not only do the tires perform far worse than I remember, but they also don't last. As I was mounting them, I noticed that one of the few, if not the only skids I had made in the short time I used them, had left a bald spot so deep that there was no trace of tread left. On my ride into work I could feel the bump of the bald spot on every revolution. So yeah, I no longer recommend them for suspension commuter bikes. Instead, I'd say that these tires are well suited for those content to ride department store brand bikes, but who don't have the time/tools/expertise to maintain their tires.

2 Comments:

Blogger Iain said...

Thanks for the review. Sheldon Brown agrees with you.

I definitely won't try them now, even though I'm so bored of punctures.

4:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wish I had seen your reviews before I went ahead and got the 700 x 35 millenniums from GreenTyres. Firstly, the rolling resistance was an absolute show stopper. The rear one seemed to have been moulded slightly off centre and gave a constant feel of a slightly buckled wheel on the odd occasions I'd get up past 15mph (single speed bike). I can imagine the skid would have taken off tread as I was shocked to find the whole tyre made from the same high density foam. I was expecting at least the tread to be rubber. They didn't feel like they had anywhere near the adhesion to the road of a normal tyre.

A failed experiment. Just a shame all I found on google at the time was opinion from people who'd never actually ridden them.

Thanks,

Rob

3:42 PM  

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