I will have the bike shop guy set me up with the right size and everything, but will using more road-friendly tires increase my speed and distance? I love mountain biking but I figure I need to start using my bike for all-purpose activities, such as getting groceries. I want to be able to go further and faster but without purchasing a road bike.

Is there anything else I can do to help compensate for the heavy frame?

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4 Responses to To increase speed and distance potential, can i swap out my mountain bike tires for road ones?

  1. mtlbiker says:

    Smooth tread tires for road riding do help, but they will not turn your mountain bike into a road bike. 26x1.5 is about as narrow as I would go, narrower, higher pressure tires can have a harsher ride than 700c road tires due to the smaller diameter of a 26" wheel.

  2. Jimmy S says:

    You should be able to gain a couple mph with road slicks vs knobies with the attendant increase in distance traveled. Biggest problem is bike weight, geometry, and power robing inefficiency of shocks.

  3. MtBikr says:

    By all means swap the tires, most 26" road bike tires that you will find are very close in size to 700-25 and 700-23 road bike tires. The road tires I have for my mountain bike are 1/16" shorter than the 700-25's on my road bike. The weight difference in really a none issue for your intended use. You will see and feel a difference in rolling resistance and speed, expect at least a 2~3 mph increase. If you have fork or shock lock-out use it too dampen pedal induced bobbing.

  4. Ron S says:

    Yes, swapping the tires and you'll notice immediate results. If you get smooth tires 2.0 inches or wider, it can handle some light mountain biking as well. When I had my mountain bike it also challenge my handling skills more since the smooth treads tend to slip and slide a little.

    To make your bike faster, make sure the tires are inflated to the proper pressure. You can also take off the reflectors from the wheels, handlebars and the seatpost. If you do ride at night you'll need decent lights anyways.

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