tim.bikeparty
Hey folks,  I'm looking to put some GravelKings (not the SK) on my commuter bike.  Specifically the 650b x 38mm.  I know a lot of you have run GravelKings and I was just wondering if, in your experience, they run true to size?  I am converting an old steel frame and if they run large, they'll rub.  I know this can also be influenced by rim width, but I'd still like to hear your experience on any of the GravelKings you've run.  Thanks!

[605745] 
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JWB475
Panaracer updated all of their tires sizes a year or two ago to actually be true to size.  I have the 650B x 48 SK's and 700C x 38 Non-SK's both are on 21mm ID rims and measure out to their namesakes...

So unless you are getting new old stock tires, you should be good to go...
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Jeb
I have an old sized GKSK 700x40 (40-622) mounted tubeless on a Stan's ZTR Crest rim, 20.8mm interior, which measures 44+mm at 34psi and a new sized GKSK 700x38 (40-622), mounted tubeless on the same rim, which measures 41+mm at 39 psi.
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LewisQC
My new sized 38c slick are almost 40mm on my 20mm rim. I really like these tires...
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HollyBoni
JWB475 wrote:
Panaracer updated all of their tires sizes a year or two ago to actually be true to size.  I have the 650B x 48 SK's and 700C x 38 Non-SK's both are on 21mm ID rims and measure out to their namesakes...

So unless you are getting new old stock tires, you should be good to go...


My 700x38c GK SKs measure 40mm on 20mm ID rims at 35psi. The 43s measure 41.5 on the same 20mm ID rims at 30psi. Both of these are the "new" sizes. 
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tim.bikeparty
so it does sound like even the new 38's run a little large... hmmm...
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SlowPokePete
My 38's measure 40 (ird 24mm)

Not that there's anything worth with that.


SPP
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SlowPokePete
on the other hand, the GK 32's I have on another bike are pretty much true to size.

SPP
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HollyBoni
Free width! 

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runrideski
I know you were not interested in the SK, but that's what I have (or rather had).
Specifically, 700x38 Gravelking SK (black sidewalls) on Stan's Grail Team wheels (supposedly 21.6mm internal width, according to Stan's website).  At 30 psi (best I can do with the gauge on my floor pump), these tires measure between 39.8 and 40.4 mm (we did have 4 mounted, all on the same rims).  So about 2mm wider than advertised.

We are gradually swapping over (i.e., 1 bike at a time) to WTB Nano Race 700x40 and these tires measure out at most 0.2 mm wider on the same wheels and pressure (3rd day after installation). 
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thefuzzycow
Again, I know the OP was asking about the GK non SK model, but I was talking with Panaracer about their SK tires and widths and this was their response:
"On our Stan’s Avion wheels [21.6mm internal], the 35c measures 37mm wide, the 38c measures 40mm, and the new marked 43c (old marked 40c) measures a true 43mm."

Again, that was direct from Panaracer in regards to the GK-SK. So take it for what it's worth in regards to the GK non SK. I would assume they run fairly similar. Depending on rim width as we all know, will vary the tire mounted width. Wider the rim, wider the tire width. Narrower rim, narrower tire width. Putting a tire on a wider rim (from a narrower rim) will keep the same diameter BUT will make the width increase. See OPEN's article on tire widths (https://opencycle.com/updates/the-effect-of-wider-rims-on-tire-width). Good info.

I'm actually in a debate now about going with the SK 38mm or 43mm tire. I'll be putting them on Roval SLX 24 rims [20mm internal]; just need to pick a size and go with it.

As far as deciding on what tire to go with in regards the OP question, depending on what your frame allows and the rim width you'll be using, I would go one size down. Due to everything I have found and experienced as well as what everybody else is saying, the tires measure slightly larger than marked width so you want to make sure they'll fit.
-moo
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HollyBoni
thefuzzycow wrote:


I'm actually in a debate now about going with the SK 38mm or 43mm tire. I'll be putting them on Roval SLX 24 rims [20mm internal]; just need to pick a size and go with it.



As always go with the biggest tyre you can fit. On my 20mm ID Hunt wheels the 43s sit around 41.5mm at 30psi. Of course if you pump them up higher they grow a bit. They have two more rows of knobs compared to the 38s which I have on the back.

The difference looks tiny when you just look at the numbers but it isn't IRL.

Weirdly on the sidewall the 38s are labeled 700x38c 622-40, and the 43s are 700x43c 622-43.
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thefuzzycow

HollyBoni wrote:


As always go with the biggest tyre you can fit. On my 20mm ID Hunt wheels the 43s sit around 41.5mm at 30psi. Of course if you pump them up higher they grow a bit. They have two more rows of knobs compared to the 38s which I have on the back.

 

It is nice having those extra rows of knubs on a plump and supple tire. Although, I would slightly disagree with the fit as big as you can. It's sometime just not practical with clearance. But I'm sure we're on the same there.

Riding a 3T Exploro and it's recommended to go 700x40 and 27.5x2.1" but I know those are safe numbers. Yet safe numbers for a reason. I know people have put the GK-SK 43 on there with very minimal clearance, but depending on conditions, you could get some mud/dirt rubbing that stays or seat tube. I might actually get both and just go with the 43mm on dry conditions or casual rides and then the 38mm (40's) or smaller for race day. And then I'm debating about trying 2.2" Panaracer Driver Pro's on my 650b wheels! We shall see!

 

-moo
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HollyBoni
thefuzzycow wrote:

It is nice having those extra rows of knubs on a plump and supple tire. Although, I would slightly disagree with the fit as big as you can. It's sometime just not practical with clearance. But I'm sure we're on the same there. 

Riding a 3T Exploro and it's recommended to go 700x40 and 27.5x2.1" but I know those are safe numbers. Yet safe numbers for a reason. I know people have put the GK-SK 43 on there with very minimal clearance, but depending on conditions, you could get some mud/dirt rubbing that stays or seat tube. I might actually get both and just go with the 43mm on dry conditions or casual rides and then the 38mm (40's) or smaller for race day. And then I'm debating about trying 2.2" Panaracer Driver Pro's on my 650b wheels! We shall see!

Sorry, I meant go as big as you can with the clearance you want/need. 😃

On my summer setup I have pretty tight clearances at the back, but I try to avoid mud and I also lightly tape up the frame where the tyre is the closest. No problems so far. 

In the winter I just slap on some 32 GKs with fenders and tons of clearance, plenty of space for mud but I barely ride offroad when it's wet all the time. 


I would be so happy if my drop bar bike could clear 2.1s, so personally I would go with the 650b with some fast XC tyres like the Thunder Burts or something. But that's just me, I treat my gravel bike as a do everything bike. It sees terrain regularly where really I would be better off with an MTB. 

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thefuzzycow
HollyBoni wrote:

Sorry, I meant go as big as you can with the clearance you want/need. 😃

On my summer setup I have pretty tight clearances at the back, but I try to avoid mud and I also lightly tape up the frame where the tyre is the closest. No problems so far. 

In the winter I just slap on some 32 GKs with fenders and tons of clearance, plenty of space for mud but I barely ride offroad when it's wet all the time. 


I would be so happy if my drop bar bike could clear 2.1s, so personally I would go with the 650b with some fast XC tyres like the Thunder Burts or something. But that's just me, I treat my gravel bike as a do everything bike. It sees terrain regularly where really I would be better off with an MTB. 



Of course; same page!

Riding gravel races in the Midwest in the fall, it gets pretty sloppy at times and with weather, you never know. Like I said, I might just go with both and if it'll be dry, go 43 but wet, either Teravail Cannonballs or the 38mm GK-SK.

That's why I went with the 3T. And I like it little better than the OPEN UP. That's what I got! I have the Burt's now; great fast rolling XC tire for a drop bar on trails! The Driver Pros have a little more side knob and throw the bike into corners. But hey, if they don't fit, I'll sell them. Not the end of the world. I still got my Burts! Same here! That's another reason I went with the 3T. I can use it for road, gravel, adventure riding, endurance races etc. An all in one! Set up 2x di2 ultegra... She's perfect!
-moo
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Zurichman
Here is my question on the Gravel King tires. I have seen a few posts that they like to sling stones. My Raleigh Roker Comp from what I have seen so far really nicks on the paint easily. If this is the case probably won't try them. Any thoughts of any other like tires that are like the SK tires that don't sling stones.


Thanks
Zman
If it was easy it wouldn't be a memory. You just hope you don't have all your memories in the same ride. been there dun that Zman
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HollyBoni
Yep, the SKs grab tiny stones that can fit between the knobs and then throw them.
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alembical
re: the slinging stones, yup my 38 Gravel KingSKs do that like crazy.  I like the tires a lot though.  I wrapped my down tube and bottom bracket area with the clear helicopter blade tape stuff.  Weighs nothing and has held up for over 10,000 miles.
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thefuzzycow
Zurichman wrote:
Any thoughts of any other like tires that are like the SK tires that don't sling stones.


Thanks
Zman


Teravail Cannonball. Things ride like a champ! Have Black and Tan walls as well.
-moo
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runrideski
I think we've hijacked the OP's original post a bit, but I feel that I must weigh in here on the 'stone-slinging' behavior of the Gravekling SK.  We have had the same experience as alembical (and others).  We've only had the new bikes for about 6 weeks, we love the bikes but these tires fire tiny rocks almost constantly; at the rider, the bike and anybody in the general vicinity.  Pace-lining is impossible.  I've had fewer rocks thrown at me while (rather idiotically) drafting behind a gravel truck.  We've also a growing concern that we are slowly 'sandblasting' our new carbon frames....I guess 'Helicopter tape' would help this...but not the annoying frequent 'ticking' from rocks pinging off the frame.

Of course, this behavior depends greatly on your typical 'gravel'.  About 50% of our terrain (Ontario, Canada) is on crushed-gravel pathways (such as multi-use city trails and rail-trails etc.).  The behavior is somewhat muted on gravel shoulders on local roads, and is hardly noticeable on straight-up gravel roads because the average size of the gravel is too big to get stuck in the knobs. 

Overall, we could no longer stand using these tires.  They were really reducing our level of enjoyment of our favorite activity.  These frustrations led me to experiment with some tire modifications (they were going in the garbage otherwise), explained below: 

There are 3 rows of tiny square knobs in the center of the tire.  What I did was clip every other knob on the outer 2 rows of knobs and left the center row alone.... sort of looks like this [O=regular knob, #=cut knob]:

O#O#O#O#O#O#O#O
OOOOOOOOOOOOOOO
#O#O#O#O#O#O#O#

I started by using toenail clippers, but that was pretty slow so I transitioned to using a sharp pair of diagonal pliers (Aka dikes).  Works way better with the tires deflated but it still took about 45 mins per tire.  Anyway, this pattern removed a third of the knobs and the result was quite remarkable.  The stone throwing wasn't eliminated (and never will be with any sort of knobby tire on a loose surface) but was vastly, vastly reduced.  Plus, there weren't any noticeable differences in other handling traits.  I suppose that the tires may wear out ~30% faster, but this is still a vast improvement in their anticipated lifespan, at least on my bike.

Besides, when I complained about these tires to the vendor, Kind Human, and they offered to replace the tires with something else of our choosing, at their cost!... After a fair bit of research I settled on trying the WTB Nano Race 40 (mentioned in an earlier post in this thread).  I tried them for the first time on the weekend and am extremely pleased with them.  Despite them being slightly heavier and substantially knobbier than the Gravelking SK, they roll just about as fast on hardpack, are (surprisingly) quieter on pavement, have far more traction in more challenging terrain, and (most importantly) do not continuously throw stones.

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thefuzzycow
runrideski wrote:
What I did was clip every other knob on the outer 2 rows of knobs and left the center row alone....

After a fair bit of research I settled on trying the WTB Nano Race 40 (mentioned in an earlier post in this thread) .



That’s pretty interesting! I wonder what my experience will be with them!

Did/Have you rode on any trail/singletrack with the Nanos?
-moo
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runrideski
Yes, I rode some singletrack on the Nanos on each of the last 2 rides, while my partner is still on the SKs (we are awaiting delivery of a 2nd pair of Nanos). 

There was a noticeable improvement in traction and I was goosing it on a number of sections and stuffing it into corners where she simply couldn't keep up for fear of sliding out.  These trails are quite smooth, with pine needles over dirt.  We've had rain recently, so traction is currently pretty good... when its much drier, everything is slipperier (pine needles turn into roller bearings).

I've also gotten up some short steep climbs (which is sorta my my 'thing') which were extremely difficult or not possible with the SKs.
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bobknh
My $.02: There is no industry standard for measuring tire width. The actual tire width depends on the width of the wheel rim, pressure, and the construction and material of the tire carcass and tread. There was a good discussion of this problem in Lennard Zinn's Velonews tech. section awhile back. One suggestion, that seems to make sense, was that manufacturers should publish the actual bead to bead width of the tire rather than the non-standard approximate "width" of the inflated tire. This would at least give a common well defined measurement, that might be useful to consumers in comparing one tire to another. Of course, the actual installed width of the tire would still depend on rim width, and tire pressure.
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JHand
JWB475 wrote:
Panaracer updated all of their tires sizes a year or two ago to actually be true to size.  I have the 650B x 48 SK's and 700C x 38 Non-SK's both are on 21mm ID rims and measure out to their namesakes...

So unless you are getting new old stock tires, you should be good to go...


Indeed, they are bigger by about 2 mm. And, of course, it's relative to the rim size you mount them on. I just mounted some non-SK 35s and to my amazement they measure almost 38 (37.8 at 40 psi) on a 21.5 internal rim. This is an issue for me because I only have enough room for actual 35's to still have any mud clearance left over.  With these actually measuring almost 38 they are running really close to the inside of the fork leg on my Domane Disc. Kinda bummed about that.  Love the tires though! I have them on another bike. Fast, and hold up WAAAY better than their Compass counter part.
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zornitta
Anyone can tell the 35 and 38 non-SK heigth?
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