Tire PSI and its effects (am looking for preferences, and to understand how it effects various stuff)

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9/20/2016 9:54 PM

Ok so I've always been pretty anal about having everything tight on my bike, I love the feel of landing and the bike just feels solid AF, and part of that was keeping my tires really high (like ~100psi) I commute on my bike as well as 'really riding', so never really considered running lower pressure.

Recently I read a couple bike-checks (garrett reynolds' and justin spriet's) where their tires were low, like 45-55psi, which really surprised me, so I went ahead and tried it - holy shit did it make a difference!! Doing any kind of sideways hop (whether pushing-off or landing it) is wayy easier as are so many other basic moves, and I've been riding it this low for a few days and I really cannot say I've noticed much decrease in speed when trying to cover distance/commute, like I literally don't even notice it slowing me down although I'm sure it does to some degree (probably significant)

What pressure you ride & why, and any general thoughts on tire pressure, would be greatly appreciated! My understanding is limited to the obvious physics of it ie squishier tire = larger contact patch, but past that and my experiences riding it I know nothing more on it and am sure others do, so please enlighten me!

[I should note that I had to bring the rear up from 45 to low 50's, as I bottomed-out on a not-too-large drop, but I have relatively skinny tires - 2.1's - so they're certainly not wide enough to ride real low pressure safely, am kind of trying to find my safest, lowest pressure now, am gonna keep adding 5psi to the rear every time I bottom-out on it lol, and don't see any reason to change the front tire... And fwiw, I don't ride parks/trails/ramps, just street and mostly do grinds and jumps, am trying to get manuals and 180's down right now, much more progress (maybe 1/3 of the time I land them) on the latter than the former!]

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9/20/2016 11:01 PM

Yeah the tyres you have will have a large affect on how well they roll and whether you'll get pinch flats etc. A thicker tyre can be run at a lower pressure with no issues. But I can imagine wider tyres at low pressure feeling horrible.
I run 2.1 front and rear too (although my front tyre comes up more like 2.2, as it's knobbly) and run about 60, probably less as I don't check very often. With narrower tyres, they're generally a lot faster rolling anyway, and less pressure gives a bit more traction too.
I tried running higher pressure and my bike didn't really feel any faster, I just noticed bumps everywhere a lot more (roads are shit in the UK haha), and I didn't like the jolty feeling when the front wheel hit the floor, even when landing back wheel first and absorbing the impact

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9/21/2016 6:55 AM

I have always ridden between 65-75 regardless of tire brand, size etc...and when riding other peoples bikes I only really notice a huge difference if the pressure is higher....making the tires harder. I feel like at the 65-75 pressure, everything is covered the way i like it...soft landings, grip in turns, not much resistance when just riding/commuting. In the past 2 years, I have been rising park more than anything so that probably effects my pressure choice. I wonder if I was riding more street if it would change (but isn't street just like a big long running park?)

On my MTB, I run real soft - 17-27, so I am used to a softer feel overall. I think the 45 area that grumpysteve runs would probably be too soft for me, but that is b/c of what I am used to. My friend Dave runs his at 100-110 and the thing is like a trampoline to me, and he is a waaayyy better rider, and does more tricks than I can do.

AS most will say, I think it comes down to what and how you ride. Funny that for the first 20 years I rode, I just put air in the tire when it didn't feel right by squeezing it with my hand. I could not have told you what pressure it was.Mountain biking made me more aware (anal?) about the actual pressure

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I've Got sXe!!!
Up The Antix/Up The Punx
1988 Mongoose Caifornian Pro
2015 Surly Krampus

"Running Is dumb" - Dave Lawrence

9/21/2016 7:21 AM

105 psi in my grifters and they are super fast in bowls. Squishy tires freak me out when going fast as I feel they are going to roll over the sidewall and cause an awesome crash. I am not a fly out master or anything and try to land as smooth as possible to save the wrists.

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Da Laird

unfuckwithable ill

Refs-brokenbmx, MaximusBikes, Brian_Griffin, Colonydirt94, Aebasher



9/21/2016 10:43 AM

100 psi or die !

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9/21/2016 10:48 AM

I run 80 PSI then let it go for a while then air back up. So between 50-80 is where I am at usually.

My tires roll decently, and cushion OK, but I don't do much for drops etc.

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"Hey anybody ever make that mistake like right when you wake up in the morning and you believe in yourself?" -Kyle Kinane

"BIKES!" -Tom Segura

9/21/2016 1:34 PM

I run 100ish psi. Lower psi is sluggish for flatland and feels shitty. also anything bigger than 2.1 feels dumb too.

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It’s all bmx

9/21/2016 2:15 PM

45-55 psi is where im at. Big tires w/ low pressure is great. Cushion and traction is nice

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9/21/2016 4:57 PM

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9/21/2016 7:20 PM

Ricked_Em wrote:

105 psi in my grifters and they are super fast in bowls. Squishy tires freak me out when going fast as I feel they are going ...more

Have been thinking of trying the Grifters. I wonder what they will feel like in my range.

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I've Got sXe!!!
Up The Antix/Up The Punx
1988 Mongoose Caifornian Pro
2015 Surly Krampus

"Running Is dumb" - Dave Lawrence