Thursday 25 December 2014

Brompton tyres

Brompton Tyre Options

We thought we'd give a quick run-through of the tyres available for your Brompton folding bike - if we've missed anything or got it wrong, or you just disagree - let us know! (There are other tyres available - we have just listed what we think are the most popular)

The Brompton folding bike uses a 16 inch tyre - but not all 16 inch tyres are the same (the 16 inch refers to the outside diameter - roughly). Some Moultons for example also use 16 inch tyres - but these can also be called 14 inch due to the internal diameter.

So how do I know the Brompton Tyre Size?

All Brompton folding bikes use the same tyre size

The best way to check that you are chosing the correct size is to use the ETRTO (European Tyre and Rim Trade Organisation) / ISO (International Standards Organisation) code.

Marathon plus 16 x 1.35 35-349 Brompton tyre
Marathon plus tyres showing tyre size
This is normally imprinted in the rubber or sometimes printed on the side of the tyre as shown in the picture to the right.

In this case it is a Marathon Plus - it can be described as 16 x 1.35 or more accurately 35-349.

349 is the diameter of the shelf in the Brompton rim upon which the tyre bead needs to sit. So in theory all tyres with an ETRTO/ISO size of xx-349 will fit the Brompton - below is a list of the current standard Brompton tyres (fitted at the factory) and some alternatives.

Standard Brompton Tyre Options:

The following tyres are fitted as standard or an option when purchased from the Brompton factory (normally via your local dealer or a Brompton junction shop)

Brompton Schwalbe Marathon Racer tyre
Brompton Marathon Racer Tyre by Schwalbe 16 x 1 1/3 / 35-349
This is a tyre made by Schwalbe for Brompton - it's new for the 2018 model Brompton and available from December 2017

The Marathon racer will be the default / no extra cost option on Brompton bikes 2018 onwards

It's a directional tyre - so you will have to make sure you fit it the correct way around (there are markings on the tyre but they can be difficult to spot - you can also tell by looking at the tread pattern)

Brompton Marathon Tyre by Schwalbe 16 x 1.35 / 35-349
This is a standard tyre made by Schwalbe and (in our opinion) slightly tougher (more puncture resistant) than the standard Brompton tyre - though this comes at a slight weight penalty.

Schwalbe give it a puncture proof rating of 5/7 (yes you read right the rating is out of seven)
It is also e-bike ready

Brompton Kojak folding tyre 16 x 1 1/4 / 32-349
This is the lightest of the Brompton tyres available - and equivalent to a slick racing tyre you might use on a road bike.
Because it is slick and can be pumped up to a higher pressure it has a lower rolling resistance.
Weight is gained not just by having thinner / lighter rubber, but also with a folding kevlar tyre bead - meaning that the tyre can be folded for storage (for example to keep a spare in your desk drawer in work - just in case). This tyre replaced the Schwalbe Stelvio which was discontinued approx 2009.
Schwalbe puncture rating: 4/7

Brompton Kevlar Tyre 16 x 1 3/8 / 37-349
This is made specifically for Brompton and is the standard tyre included in the price. There used to be two variants, standard (which came with a yellow label) and kevlar (which came with a green label). It has a reflective sidewall to make you visible to other traffic - this tyre was discontinued in 2017

Alternative Brompton Tyre Options:

These are all the correct size for the Brompton, but are not supplied as direct factory fit options.

Schwalbe Marathon Plus 16 x 1.35 / 35-349
This is actually our best selling tyre and Schwalbe's flagship touring tyre - a lot of people (us included) don't like getting punctures. Schwalbe call this tyre "Unblattable" - German for Unflatable (although probably not an English word - you get the point - it doesn't puncture easily) - we have a sample in the shop with drawing pins stuck in it - which don't make it through to the inner tube.
Brompton say that due to the stiff side wall it doesn't cornet quite as well as the Marathon which is why it's not an option from them.
Note: The Marathon Plus tyres are directional - so fit them according to the "direction" arrow - check before fitting to save fitting twice!
Schwalbe puncture rating: 7/7 (this is why the scale was increased from 6 to 7 we think!)

Schwalbe Kojak with wire bead 16 x 1 1/4 / 32-349
This is the same as the Brompton Kojak tyre except that it has a wired bead - adding approx. 85g per tyre and doesn't have a reflective sidewall, so ideally you should use wheel reflectors.
Schwalbe puncture rating: 4/6

Schwalbe Winter studded tyre 16 x 1.2 / 30-349
Introduced for the 2014/2015 winter, Schwalbe bowed to popular demand and describe this as being made for the Brompton.
Studs in the tyre mean it gives more grip on icy roads while you can also ride it on dry / ice free roads. these tyres don't help in snow though!

What to Brilliant Bikes know about tyres for Bromptons? We have been selling spare parts and accessories (including tyres) online since 2009 and in our Chobham shop, as well as using them on our own Bromptons. We currently have all of the above tyres in stock and offer free UK delivery.

Our personal choice: Schwalbe Marathon Plus 16 inch (we don't like punctures!)

External resources:
Brompton tyres at Brilliant Bikes

1 comment:

jade said...

The tyres quality of this model should meet its standard; otherwise it can lower the comfort level. Milperra Tyres