Tires, Tubes & Wheels

I bike commute 28 miles most workdays year-round and have been doing it now for more than six years almost entirely on the same bike, a 2010 REI Novara Randonee touring bike. At this point I estimate that my go-to ride now has somewhere north of 20,000 miles on it, so it needs some regular…

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I bike commute year-round on a 28-mile round-trip journey just outside of Boston, much of it on the Minuteman Commuter Bikeway. In winter, when snow and ice coat the bike path, I switch from my regular commuting bike to a 29er mountain bike with fully studded tires. And it’s this bike that takes the brunt…

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Fat bike tire pressure operates slightly differently from the average bike. Fat bikers roll with much lower air pressure in their tires than mountain bike or road riders. In loose snow or sand, cyclists typically aim for tire readings of less than 10 pounds per square inch (psi). But many tire gauges fail to accurately measure pressure at such a low range….

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Biking on trails and other unpaved surfaces can cause significant damage, especially if the terrain is muddy or easily disturbed. While fat bikes can cause less impact than mountain bikes due to wider tires and broader weight distribution, that doesn’t give you an all-season pass to ride when conditions are poor. Always check local regulations…

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Fat bikes are hard to miss. Their giant balloon tires stand out like circular blimps and make other bikes look positively waifish in comparison. For a species of bicycle that barely existed a decade ago, fat bikes have since become one of the hottest (fattest?) new trends in the industry. So is a fat bike…

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Grab your tent and your pals for an adventure that combines the best of backpacking and mountain biking: backpacking. I glide to a stop and step off my bike, leaning its considerable weight against a tree. As I amble down to the edge of Bailey Pond, I take in the glassy, bluegray surface, backed right…

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The climbing rope my husband, Pete, purchased in 1993 never saw a harness after 1998, but we still have several pieces of it around the house. It has kept kayaks fastened to car roofs, held drying laundry on camping trips, and even towed a stuck car. In the warm months, it is a makeshift tree…

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Outdoor enthusiasts with mobility impairments can now explore off-road, going where standard wheelchairs cannot. Developed by the Boston-based company GRIT, the Freedom Chair is propelled by a patented drive train of gears and levers. Unlike a push-rim wheelchair, which can waste up to 90 percent of a rider’s effort, the Freedom Chair operates more like a bicycle: The rider pumps the levers to go…

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Got a bike? What about the right tires for your ride? Understanding the basics of tire sizing, tread selection, and a few other common features will help you choose wisely when it comes time to shop for replacement tires. Measure Twice Bike tire dimensions are indicated by two numbers, such as 26 x 2.0 or…

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Proper bike tire inflation is essential for the safety, comfort, and durability of your tires. A few key tips: Buy a floor pump with an integrated pressure gauge—an invaluable tool for proper inflation. Recommended pressure is listed on the tire’s sidewall and ranges from roughly 30 to 50 pounds per square inch (psi) for wide…

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