Thursday, October 6, 2011

Cream tires do not cut it

I had Schwalbe cream tires installed on my bike in mid-July.
I absolutely love the look of cream tires and fantasized about cruising around on a nice old-fashioned looking bicycle.
Well, within a week they were disgusting.

I stood it and washed the bike, thinking I had done something wrong I had not noticed, like rolling in mud or whatever. Few days later, again they were filthy dirty.

I washed the bike again. Few days later, damn it, can't believe it, those bloody tires are disgusting again.

I chose to ignore it this time. We went on a long week-end and, oh miracle! the gravel cleaned the tires pretty nice through some sort of scrubbing effect.

Back in town, within days, they are disgusting again. Now I am wondering how others manage to keep theirs clean.

- Is it that they don't really cycle? Impossible, a lot of these folks load on serious mileage. I don't. I only run errands. I cycle for transport, that's no sport to me; if I have no business outside the house the bike stays parked.

- Maybe I got shit tires. Well, I ordered them through a pretty decent bike shop who got them through their usual distributor. And they look pretty standard. Can't be that.

- Duh, the tires are white, what did you expect? Well, other people's aren't that dirty. So there is something going on.

- Maybe people are frantically washing theirs after every ride... Sounds very neurotic but hey, you never know...

- Maybe Montreal is a particularly filthy city, which I am slowly becoming convinced of.
Alas, this was later confirmed by folks who know what they are talking about. The situation is hopeless!

In any case, enjoy the sight of it and, if you live in Montreal, think carefully about those romantic cream tires you felt like ordering...
Still love them by the way, just a pain in the ass to keep clean.


  1. I imagine a lot of people who go for cream tires have bikes with drum or disc brakes a chain case. With rim brakes you're leaving brake dust all over your wheels, and when it gets wet that's going to wash onto the tires.

  2. Oh so it has to do with rim brakes?
    Someone told me it was due to the aluminium wheel which pick up all the dirt on the roads.
    Ah,well I'll ahve to make do with it!

  3. Changing the brake pads might help. Dust from salmon pads might not look so terrible on the Delta Cruisers.


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