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Thursday, November 7, 2013

How to set tyre pressure for cyclocross | BikeRadar

Correct pressure should provide maximum contact area and shock absorption without bottoming out on the rim: correct pressure should provide maximum contact area and shock absorption without bottoming out on the rim

Perfect tyre pressure for cyclocross is a personal thing, with variables in riding style, experience, setup and conditions all affecting the ideal arrangement. Correct pressure should be low enough to provide maximum tyre contact area and shock absorption without bottoming out on the rim. So what PSI is that, exactly? You will have to experiment to discover what works best for you. Here's how.

The first step to unraveling this mystery is to establish benchmarks. Either get a good gauge (more on that later) or at least commit to using the same pump all the time, as different pumps can have wildly varying readouts.

Now, start at a fixed point, say 50psi if you’re new to ’cross and using clincher tyres. Next, make some notes as you ride and race. Then, adjust the pressure according to the points below — and keep track of the exact pressure and the results.

Pinch flat during a training session? Add some pressure. Feel like you’re getting rattled around like a pinball? Let a little out. But above all, keep track of what you’re doing and how it works. It might sound complicated, but it doesn’t take long to accumulate some experience and build a good data set. It's important to remember that what works well for one rider might not be best for another.

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