Tarmac sl7 best tires

Looking for best puncture resistance for my SL7. About 80 kgs so they need to be strong. Any advice? Was thinking 28mm gatorskins. Thanks!

With body weight, the wheels are normally the biggest concern. Tires shouldn’t be a big deal, but even at 80kg you should be okay, that’s not very much. Bikes can hold much more than that :slight_smile:

I personally like the Continental Grand Prix 4 Seasons as an alternative to the gatorskins. They’re a little bit lighter and have better rolling resistance than the gatorskins, but are still good for the puncture resistance.

I’m sure you’ll find plenty of other good answers here though and some great recommendations

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Get the gatorskins if you’re looking for tires that have solid puncture resistance but are sssslllooowwwwww. GP5000s are much faster and quite puncture resistant.

I would actually recommend getting something like a specialized turbo pro tire or GP5000tl tire and running it tubeless. I have used both tires tubeless on my SL6 comp and have only had 1 flat that didn’t seal with tubeless sealant (nails are not a rim’s best friend). I think that honestly the GP5000tl is the best option as they are pretty good with the black belt puncture resistance as well as they are fast fast tires.

Ditto GP5000, tl ideally. They are the do it all tyre, feel lovely, low RR, no flats, easy to fit. I don’t know how they do it.

You almost hear the team at specialized crying into their aero optimised carbon coffee mugs.


Winter or summer tires?
For summer riding, I‘d never choose something as slow as the gators…
My winter tires are Pirelli 4S and Continental GP4S. Obviously slower than my summer tires, but well puncture resistant and softer in the rubber, which is good for winter riding.
For summer riding, a GP5000 or Schwalbe Pro One Addix are pretty puncture resistant, yet fast enough for racing.

Yeah GP 4 Seasons are excellent, much, much better grip wise and a nicer feel too. I ride them on my commuter averaging 100 miles a week in London and had 4 punctures last year, 3 were the kind of tacks you use in a noticeboard and the other was a large chunk of glass. I’m not sure any tyre would have prevented them to be honest.

Pirelli P ZERO Race TLR SL Folding Tire - Best tire ever used.

If your main concern is puncture resistance above everything else, then Gatorskins are definitely an option, as are these All Condition Armadillo Elite | Specialized.com


I’ve had good success with the Pirelli tyres but I expect the Specialized and Conti tyres are even better again.

80Kg is not that much.

Regarding your tyres, like others, I would suggest Continental GP 4 Season for winter/commuting/training use and then Continental GP5000 (although not getting as good reviews as the 4000) for the summer. Are you considering tubeless, since that opens up other options? I have been happy with the Schwalbe Pro One TLE.

A lot of issues around puncture prevention come from things like checking rim tape, maintaining good tyre pressure, picking out any flints regularly, and good riding habits. However, you have to accept, that sometimes you are just unlucky.

Great advice - I used some pretty supple race tubulars in winter 2018 and you can bet after every ride I spent 5 mins checking the tyres with a pair of the wife’s tweezers. I wasn’t doing loads of miles at the time, but they did surprisingly well. It’s a good habit that I’ve maintained

Seems wrong to use Gatorskins on an SL7 IMO. Does the OP have a winter bike?

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Going to the boonies for a month and don’t want to have to deal with changing tires etc.

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Why would you want to put one of the slowest tires on one of the fastest bikes out there? I’m 80kg and run GP5000 no problems, you’re not heavy enough to warrant running crap tires unless you use your SL7 for commuting they may make sense

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A brand new pair of GP5000s would be fine. Thick enough rubber on them for not worrying about punctures I’d say. IIRC my rear GP5000 lasted about 3000-4000 miles and front was about 5000-6000

Why - besides tire clearance - does the bike brand and model matter for the tire choice? I’d rather state if you want to go tubeless and in that case which wheels you want to put them on (hooked vs hookless compability)…

Depends what you’re using it for? Over the winter I always swap out to GP4 Seasons, given the increase in foliage and gravel etc. on the roads. The last thing I want to be doing is having to change a tube in the cold.

I am a competitive cyclist and I used gatroskins hardshell for many seasons, of both training and sometimes racing. Truth to be told, everyone here will tell you to go lighter, a supple tire that will last you a couple of thousands of miles but it is all about what you are comfortable with.

I ride a lot and a set of gatorskins last me around 6 months ( 7500 miles), I am happy with that, I feel like I got my money worth. If you are not sponsored, athlete, you need to use what works for you.

Keep in mind Gatorsking will feel like riding on a water hose, but if that is something you can live with, that is fine. Also Gatorskin does not perform that well on wet, I live in CO where it does not rain that much so all my miles are mostly dry. Don’t get too much into rolling resistance etc, that is all crap, keep lower PSI due to your weight, and enjoy riding.
Calculator for PSI:

I’d also argue that if the ideal tire for someone’s conditions is a Gatorskin, the SL7 is not the ideal bike for their riding. Nobody in their right mind buys a performance car and then purposely sticks on run flat tires