My last article on Tannus tyres were a few brief first impressions. I’ve had several months riding them now and can give you a full rundown.
The first thing I should tell you is that when my front tyre got a flat I didn’t hesitate to replace it with one of Tannus’ solid tyres. That should tell you something about my opinion of these tyres. But it’s not the full story.
So Nice Knowing I Can Never Flat Again
I’ve got a theory that the one time you forget your pump/tools/spares is the one time you need them. I’ve sadly proven this correct many times. I have a knack for puncturing that one time I forget that leaving them behind will only prove my theory. When I don’t have my spares I always feel like I’m vulnerable. Am I going to get stuck 15kms from home with a flat tyre?
It’s liberating therefore to have solid tyres front and back. Tyres that will never flat. I can ride any time I want without worrying about taking a single thing with me. I don’t have to worry about stuffing spares into my jersey, or finding a pack for them, or leaving them attached to my bike.
When you read the rest of the review, you have to remember that whatever else these tyres might have going against them, it has to be balanced against the freedom of never worrying about getting a flat. Which is brilliant.
There Were Things I Liked
Yeah, well I guess we’ve covered everything I liked already. You can’t get a flat. You don’t need spares.
But they also rolled nicely. That’s something else I liked. They felt like tyres should feel, not doughy or unresponsive. The bike rolled along just as well with them as with normal tyres.
They’re definitely harder than normal tyres. They feel like I’m riding on 120psi, whereas I was more of a 90psi kind of guy. It’s not a direct corollary though. The feeling isn’t exactly like pneumatic tyres. But it’s close. And it’s awful close to some fully pumped up tyres. Not a nad thing necessarily, so it’s staying under the things I liked cloumn.
There Were Things I Didn't Like
My main issue with them is I can’t convince myself that they corner all that well. When I had just one tyre, the rear, it wasn’t very noticeable. It dragged around corners but the front kept us tracking nicely. Now I have two of them I find the bike drifting through corners where I would expect a sharper response.
To be honest, this bike barely does more than a quick trip around the corner and back. I’ve got a big electric bike now. It’s clocked up 4,000kms in six month. Which doesn’t leave much time for the other bike. What I can say that on the way to soccer (one of the few rides) there is a swooping 270 degree turn with a slight off camber. It’s a good challenge for bike and ride. Taking this turn in a nice swooping arc is a pleasure…when I get it halfway right.
This turn is the undoing of the Tannus solid tyres. They’re pushing the limits of adhesion. I can’t ride this corner with the same speed or confidence I could on regular tyres.
Would I Buy Them Again?
I’m sure I would buy Tannus tyres again.
But only if I had to get skinny tyres. I think there are better solutions out there for thicker tyres. If you’re carrying extra weight (like my ebike for example) then thicker tyres, thicker tubes, tube liners, etc, they’ll give good protection without any of the downside of solid tyres.
Tannus themselves offer the Tannus Armour (which I’m already using). Tannus Armour on a 700×42 tyre is plenty of protection for most situations. Perhaps one day you’d puncture but it’s super unlikely. And they have run-flat protection.
If I was specccing a bike from scratch for commuting I would make sure I had bigger tyres. But since I don’t, since I can maybe fit 700×28 at best, I would buy Tannus Aither tyres again.