Technical > Wheels, Tyres and Brakes

Are winter tyres/spikes worth it for riding on frosty days

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steve216c:
Last year I crashed my bike and broke my ribs. That was on wet leaves and on cobblestones. Around 8 weeks later I was back on the bike and riding back from physio for the ribs and came a cropper on a frosty bike path.

Berlin doesn't get much snow but is often frosty in the morning, particular the bike paths. Blitzeis (rain freezing on ground contact) happens occasionally but hard overnight frosts can make for visible and black ice conditions- and my commute requires crossing bridges where this is a given many mornings. The Germans talk about winter tyres for cars from O (October) to O (Ostern=Easter), and our winters do drag quite a bit longer than those back in the home counties where I originally hail from.

I don't want to constantly change tyres, so would plan to leave them on until spring sets in- but commute roundtrip is around 20 miles a day. I don't want riding on spikes to be a chore. I ride Marathon Plus usually. I'd be less inclined to cycle if snow is laying- so not so worried about snow performance. 

But would they make a difference if just for frosty conditions I mentioned???

RoseBikes have some Schwalbe Winter Active spikes at a very tempting EUR price (UK price GBP21).

Any suggestions gratefully received :)

Steve

kwkirby01:
I spent a couple of years commuting with winter tyres, and although slower, I did feel much safer in frosty weather.
The Schwalbe tyres I used had off-centre spikes to arrest a slip, so that for most riding the spikes were not used.
This seemed a pretty good compromise to me. Hope this helps.

steve216c:

--- Quote from: kwkirby01 on December 11, 2020, 02:04:22 PM ---I spent a couple of years commuting with winter tyres, and although slower, I did feel much safer in frosty weather.
The Schwalbe tyres I used had off-centre spikes to arrest a slip, so that for most riding the spikes were not used.
This seemed a pretty good compromise to me. Hope this helps.

--- End quote ---

Are they much slower than Schwalbe Marathon tyres? Is it really noticable?

kwkirby01:
The tyres are heavier and definitely more sluggish, but I didn't ever time myself so can't say how much slower.
The reduction in speed did not put me off commuting to work so it couldn't have been that much slower.

julk:
The Schwalbe studded winter tyres have made riding in icy or frosty surfaces possible for me.
You can steer and brake with some confidence that you will not come off.
It is a bit like riding normally on a wet road - a bit more care needed.

They were useless in snow or rutted ice, maybe the longer spiked tyres would have worked for me there.
Julian.

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