Viewing 40 posts - 1 through 40 (of 46 total)
  • Gatorskins – any good?
  • Premier Icon Mowgli
    Free Member

    I hate myself a bit for posting this. But a pair of tyres is a fair outlay and I don’t want to buy the wrong ones. I need some tyres for
    a) commuting 20km/day all year round,
    b) doing some long road rides (~200 miles over a weekend type thing) where a puncture would be particularly irritating.

    Looking at 25mm wired bead gatorskins – about 300g each, and the product blurb sounds like what I need – puncture resistant, durable etc. Considered also GP 4 seasons, but tempted by the durability of the Gatorskins for a fairly small weight penalty. Also looked at Durano Plus but the 5mm insert puts me off a little, and they’re also heavier.

    Cheers (and apologies…)

    Premier Icon burchill
    Free Member

    They roll horrendously slowly and feel horrible – maybe ok for a commute but they’ll suck any enjoyment out of your weekend rides.

    I’m running 25c Clement Stradas for my commute, and I’m not going to tempt fate but the only p*ncture I’ve had was faulty inner tube-related. Even the Lifeline tyres I ran beforehand were better (i.e. faster and just as puncture-free) than the Gatorskins before them.

    Premier Icon TiRed
    Free Member

    Like riding on hosepipe. GP 4 Seasons are better but not as nice as Schwalbe Duranos. I’ve enjoyed Vittoria Paves with very few punctures and these are much better. 200 miles on GP 4 Seasons would be bad enough – it would feel like 300 on Gatorskins. I’d go with the Paves, personally.

    I’ve also commuted on Schwalbe Ones, which are great tyres.

    Premier Icon prawny
    Free Member

    Absolute bag of shoot.

    Used to use them when I started commuting in 2009 and put up with them but looking back they were slow sketchy and I still had punctures.

    Got a durano plus (25mm folding) on the back of my commuter, they last 5000 miles and are indestructible. Big following on the bike radar commute forum too. Only use a cheap front tyre though, rear tyre gets the most abuse.

    Premier Icon ransos
    Free Member

    Hateful things. The wet grip is atrocious.

    Premier Icon Mowgli
    Free Member

    Ah, that’s fairly decisive then, thanks. I thought the Durano Plus would roll worse with that thick insert but happy to be proved wrong.

    Premier Icon MaryHinge
    Free Member

    Not used Gatorskins, I use GP4000s II all year round, no “issues”, riding rural mid-Wales on pretty rough back lanes etc.

    Used GP4 Seasons for winter a while back and they were good if a tad slower.

    Currently looking at some new 28mm tyres for the winter bike, and might go for Duranos this time, on the back of a recent good experience on a Schwalbe One following a last minute wheel swap for Ironman Wales.

    Probably not a lot help am I!!!

    Premier Icon SaxonRider
    Free Member

    Clement Stradas would tick all the right boxes for me.

    Tan sidewalls? Tick.

    Only use a cheap front tyre though, rear tyre gets the most abuse.

    I know this should be true in theory, but due to glass and other debris, I have had just as much bad luck puncturing the front as the back.

    OP, think about it this way: a new set of good tyres is still less than the cost of a fill-up at the diesel pump.

    Premier Icon Gary_M
    Free Member

    Considered also GP 4 seasons

    I’ve been using GP 4seasons for quite a few years on my commuters, Running 28mm on one bike and 32mm on the other. I’m really happy with them.

    Premier Icon MaryHinge
    Free Member

    TiRed – which model Durano you been using? Was thinking DD (Double Defence) but they might be overkill if I have no problem with GP4000s.

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Free Member

    I had some Gatorskins ages ago. 25c they were not – same size as the 23s I took off nearly.

    Premier Icon Mowgli
    Free Member

    Durano RaceGuards are available for £18.99 from a few places, so think I’ll go for them. Dodged a bullet with the Gatorskins it seems. Thanks all.

    Premier Icon failedengineer
    Full Member

    I’ve got a pair of 28mm Gatorskin folders. They seem OK, but then I’ve never had any other road bike slicks. How can one slick be slower than another unless the compound is really soft and therefore grippier?

    Premier Icon fifeandy
    Free Member

    Meh, I think Gatorskins get a needlessly hard time on here.
    Just take a look at Wiggle:
    Wire Bead version – 4.6/5 from 1600 reviews
    Folding version – 4.7/5 from 1700 reviews

    They are mid price, mid range training tyre and perform as such. There’s much worse tyres out there.

    How can one slick be slower than another unless the compound is really soft and therefore grippier?

    Speed is not in how soft or not the rubber compound is, its in how much energy it loses as it deforms.
    And more importantly, the quality of the tyre carcass and how easily that deforms.
    A Gatorskin is ~0.5-1mph slower than a GP4000, and yet also less grippy.

    Premier Icon spawnofyorkshire
    Full Member

    I didn’t get on with 28c gatorskins. I was running some Giant P-SLR 2’s i got very cheap but have been great and have only punctured once and haven’t cut up. Loads of grip, not sure wear rate is brilliant but friction on a turbo hasn’t helped.
    They’re now worn and i have a set of 28c Panaracer Gravel kings to try

    Premier Icon Bez
    Full Member

    IME Gators feel like they’re made of wood and have grip to match.

    I’ve used GP 4000S IIs all year round for the last 6-7 years and they’re grippy, supple, reliable and durable. Well worth the extra money.

    Premier Icon heavy_rat
    Free Member

    Another Gator hater here. Lethal in the wet. No more puncture resistance than a GP4000 which is a far superior tyre in every way.

    Premier Icon oafishb
    Free Member

    These chaps have it right.
    Gatorskins – vile.
    I hired a lovely top end Giant Propel on holiday and it was shod with these. Took the edge off it.

    Schwalbe Ones are really good (I’ve had several thousand trouble free miles) and Conti GP400s I had for ages.

    Haven’t tried Duranos, but if the guys are saying they’re good, they’re probably good.

    Premier Icon TiRed
    Free Member

    I’ve used all Duranos, and settled on the standard ones. Wore out some plus down to the blue layer without a puncture, but you take a hit on performance.

    Premier Icon prawny
    Free Member

    Durano RaceGuards are available for £18.99 from a few places, so think I’ll go for them. Dodged a bullet with the Gatorskins it seems. Thanks all.

    Raceguards aren’t as armoured as the Plus, I’ve not used them so might be alright but just wanted to make you aware.

    I know this should be true in theory, but due to glass and other debris, I have had just as much bad luck puncturing the front as the back.

    I’m only going by my experience but in the last 12500 miles I’ve used 1 Schwalbe Blizzard and one Lugano, no protection in either and I’ve had 2 punctures.

    Had one rear puncture when an inch long thorn got through about 4 miles past where the hedge cutting was. I needed pliers to get it out it was so long.

    Premier Icon lunge
    Full Member

    Gatorskins are just plain horrible IMO, basically as many have said above.

    Vredestein Senso Xtreme are my commuter/winter tyre of choice. Very grippy, no punctures so far and wear well too.

    Premier Icon charliem
    Free Member

    Another vote for Duranos…been running a pair of 25c D plus for 6 months ~100miles a week commuting on a glass littered route that got the better of a marathon plus twice in a year, no issues at all (presumably now jinxed). Grip in the wet is decent and they’re hard wearing. Bought a 28 DD to try on the front to test clearance, it’s not much bigger than a 25c D+ and is basically just a normal durano with extra sidewall reinforcement. Will probably stick with the D+ at the back tbh.

    Premier Icon twicewithchips
    Free Member

    Well bucking the trend, I got on alright with them. Seem to suit all-year commuting duties just fine.

    Can you go tubeless if flint/thorn punctures are an issue – perhaps that opens the way to better options?

    Premier Icon retro83
    Free Member

    fifeandy – Member
    Meh, I think Gatorskins get a needlessly hard time on here.
    Just take a look at Wiggle:
    Wire Bead version – 4.6/5 from 1600 reviews
    Folding version – 4.7/5 from 1700 reviews

    They are mid price, mid range training tyre and perform as such. There’s much worse tyres out there.

    Thing is with online reviews, you always seem to get a tonne of people who rate it 5* for no reason other than they own it or that it was delivered quickly, and that drowns out the 1* reviews with critical info … “This tyre exploded and killed a bus full of nuns” etc

    On the Gators, I found them great as a dry weather commuting tyre, really tough, but they were lethal shizzle in the wet. I switched to GP 4 seasons, the puncture resistance seems about the same, slightly worse but the wet grip is night and day better.

    Premier Icon fifeandy
    Free Member

    Thing is with online reviews, you always seem to get a tonne of people who rate it 5* for no reason other than they own it or that it was delivered quickly, and that drowns out the 1* reviews with critical info … “This tyre exploded and killed a bus full of nuns” etc

    I find they are generally cancelled out by the halfwits that order a 32c only to find it doesn’t fit in their frame and is hence obviously only a 1* tyre as a better tyre would have given them a call to tell them it wouldn’t fit before delivery.

    On the Gators, I found them great as a dry weather commuting tyre, really tough, but they were lethal shizzle in the wet. I switched to GP 4 seasons, the puncture resistance seems about the same, slightly worse but the wet grip is night and day better.

    Well yes, the 4Seasons is undoubtedly a better tyre, but it’s no longer a mid-range mid-price item, its a top of the range – high-price item so hardly a fair comparison.

    Premier Icon retro83
    Free Member

    Well yes, the 4Seasons is undoubtedly a better tyre, but it’s no longer a mid-range mid-price item, its a top of the range – high-price item so hardly a fair comparison.

    RRP maybe, but a folding 25c gator is about £28 and a folding 25c 4season is £32 on CRC, or do you mean the wire gator? Mine were both folders.

    Premier Icon crosshair
    Free Member

    I like mine. No problems with grip or punctures (28mm @ 80psi).

    Premier Icon epo-aholic
    Free Member

    My go-to tyre of choice for anything other than summer. Great grip and longevity with a fair bit of puncture resistance……Think i managed around 6000km out of the last set. Go for the folding versions and a wide as your bike will take.

    Premier Icon anagallis_arvensis
    Free Member

    Duranos for me. Gatorskins lack grip and always seemed a bit square to me. Paves are lovely and grippy but dont seem very durable Duranos a better compromise.

    Premier Icon tillydog
    Free Member

    How do Schwalbe Marathon GreenGuards compare for this sort of application?

    i have a set of 28c Panaracer Gravel kings to try

    I thought they rolled very nicely, were very comfortable and grippy (compared to Specialized Espoirs, anyway) , but they seemed to get cut up really quickly, and punctured very easily. The back got killed by a big cut right through the middle of the tread after 1800 miles, but the front is still just about going at 2800 miles. Not noticeably worn, but lots of gaping cuts through to the threads – doesn’t inspire confidence :-/

    Premier Icon butcher
    Full Member

    Gatorskins are really not as bad as some people say. Perfectly adequate tyre. Bit skittish in the wet. Good puncture protection.

    I’ve moved onto Duranos now, which I think I prefer. Wet weather performance seems better. Puncture protection just as good as Gatorskins in my experience. There are a few different versions. Durano Plus would probably be overkill!

    Premier Icon damascus
    Free Member

    I used to run Gators and then swopped for schwalbe one tyres. I noticed instantly how much quicker the bike was and got prs on my strava route home.

    But they do suffer from cuts.

    If you are just using them for commuting then they are fine but if you are going to do big miles on them at the weekend then consider a faster rolling tyre.

    My friends all run gp4000 all year round and swear by them.

    Premier Icon 100psi
    Free Member

    I am using Michelin pro 4 endurance 28mm and these have been excellent – these were on offer at crc

    Premier Icon andyt1054
    Free Member

    Ive used gatorskins for well over 6 years now mainly 25mm in flavour, I can only recall having one puncture years ago too. No complaints re feel/speed etc. They seem to be the tyre of choice with my club too, Duranos are also quite popular…

    Premier Icon Daffy
    Full Member

    I commute about 7k per year and like others above, dislike Gatorskins after two crashes using them in the cold/wet.

    I now forgo puncture resistance and use tubeless road. Currently using Schwalbe Pro Ones, which was been great and Hutchinson Sector 32s which feel phenomenally good, almost as good as a tubular.

    Premier Icon edhornby
    Free Member

    I’ve used them on the rear of commuter bikes and they are ok but not the front, they have a very hard rubber compound which makes for sketchy in the wet as others have said (although mine are the flexible bead rather than the wire ones which are awful)

    Another option is Michelin pro4endurance nice feel and not heavy and decent puncture proofing, I got mine for a decent price

    Premier Icon Aristotle
    Free Member

    Gatorskins, no. Poor in the wet.

    Durano 28mm are tough, grippy (wet, dry and frost), hard-wearing and great for road and bumpy tracks.

    Durano 25mm are similar, but smaller. Really good on road.

    Durano do a very good job of resisting piercing from glass shards on the road. Picking them out every couple of weeks if riding on debris-strewn roads.

    If you want even more volume, Schwalbe Marathon Supreme (not the other Marathons, which are massively heavy) 32mm are like slightly bigger Duranos and excellent(they do 37mm ones too, I think).

    Premier Icon schmiken
    Full Member

    I much prefer Challenge Paris Roubaix. Very nice tyres, pricey and very supple.
    Bloody expensive though, but totally worth it.

    Gatorskins are like hosepipe – stiff, uncomfortable, not grippy and weirdly seem to puncture because they’re stiff. I even tried tubular versions, and they are much the same.

    Premier Icon willyboy
    Free Member

    I’ve never had a problem with them. For the price they are a good tyre. I’ve ridden Paris Roubaix on a set of 700*25s and I survived.

    Of course there are better tyres out there if you want to spend more. I used to race on vredestein fortezzas and michelin pro races, but they don’t seem to last that long.

    Premier Icon Aristotle
    Free Member

    Given the choice, though, there are better alternatives.

Viewing 40 posts - 1 through 40 (of 46 total)

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