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View Full Version : Specialized Armadillos vs. Schwalbe Marathon Plus



5555624
07-31-2012, 07:30 AM
Any opinions/experience regarding Specialized Armadillos vs. Schwalbe Marathon Plus tires? Specifically, the Hemisphere Armadillo and the Marathon Plus HS404 or HS348? I know a number of people here have Armadillos, but I don't know about the Marathon Plus. Thanks.

bluerider
07-31-2012, 07:42 AM
I went through this tire debate with myself recently. I went with Continental Grand Prix 4 Seasons and couldn't be happier. Almost as tough as Gatorskins but much lighter. The Schwalbe's are nice but heavy. I guess it would depend on the type of riding and the bike.

jrenaut
07-31-2012, 08:28 AM
I've put a little over 1000 miles on Armadillo Elites, probably 75-80% on downtown DC streets, and had exactly two flats. One was a poorly installed tube, and one was a nail that went through the rim as well as the tire. But they're the only tires I've ever had, aside from the junk that came with the bike, so I can't speak for anything else. I went from 25 to 23 when I got the Armadillos, and I didn't feel like the rolling resistance went up.

Greenbelt
07-31-2012, 09:19 AM
Any opinions/experience regarding Specialized Armadillos vs. Schwalbe Marathon Plus tires? Specifically, the Hemisphere Armadillo and the Marathon Plus HS404 or HS348? I know a number of people here have Armadillos, but I don't know about the Marathon Plus. Thanks.

I've used both and prefer the Schwalbes. The ride quality and road grip seems better, and flat resistance is great, and the (lack of) wear is outstanding. Mine have nearly 5,000k pretty rough commuting miles and I just switched back to front -- I think they have another 2 or 3k left in them. I'm using the 700x35 model that has a nice center roll, but knobby sort of patterns on the sides that grip in when you go off road. Seems like the best of both worlds.

5555624
08-02-2012, 05:29 AM
I've used both and prefer the Schwalbes. The ride quality and road grip seems better, and flat resistance is great, and the (lack of) wear is outstanding. Mine have nearly 5,000k pretty rough commuting miles and I just switched back to front -- I think they have another 2 or 3k left in them. I'm using the 700x35 model that has a nice center roll, but knobby sort of patterns on the sides that grip in when you go off road. Seems like the best of both worlds.

Thanks! (And thanks to bluerider and jrenaut, too) I was leaning towards the Schwalbes, so I think that's the way I'll go.

creadinger
02-12-2014, 07:26 PM
So not the answer to the specific topic asked BUT.....

In the battle of durable tires between Gatorskins and Armadillos, Armadillos get a big thumbs down from me. I got a flat on my ride in to work on Tuesday and while changing my tube I noticed that the sidewall of my Armadillo Elite was torn and the tube was showing through, making it pretty much useless. The tire was less than a year old and at least half as old as my pair of Gatorskins, with probably 1/3rd the mileage. Maybe it was just one bad tire, or maybe something random on the road caused it to happen, but at $65 a pop I'm not willing to give them another try unless I'm forced to.

Rod Smith
02-12-2014, 07:40 PM
The regular Marathons never flat. Not sure why anyone would need the Marathon Plus. They (Marathons) seem a little slippery on wet roads but not too bad. I prefer Gatorskin to Armadillo.

jrenaut
02-12-2014, 08:02 PM
Armadillos are like tank treads in all respects but durability. I flatted mine exactly twice - one was user error on tube installation, and one was a nail that went through the rim. But they didn't last.

I replaced them with Gatorskins and they're a little slicker and I've had one flat (due to puncture, another one was a pinch and not the fault of the tire). I'm planning to get another set of Gatorskins. I also don't like Specialized much as a company - it's annoying that a shop has to carry all their bikes to also carry the tires, and you can't get them online. Enter this century, Specialized.

Dickie
02-13-2014, 10:02 AM
I've switched to Gatorskins (700 x 23) on my ride bike about a year ago due to a rash of flats. Approximately 5000 miles later and the wear is minimal with zero flats.. I just jinxed myself didn't I?

Harry Meatmotor
02-27-2014, 04:41 PM
i'll add another vote for conti gatorskins (harder to find 32s). i went through a few pairs of specialized infinity armadillos, zero flats in ~8,000 miles, but the sidewalls failed right at the bead on 3 of them. i have a suspicion that something in the brakedust/roadgrime/rain slurry tends to weaken the material that specialized uses right at the bead. I'll be honest, the thing that surprises me most about the conti gatorskins is how well they roll compared to my regular road tires (michelin pro4s or vittoria open corsas or conti gp4000s). anything armadillo rolls like they're filled with concrete.

Bill Hole
03-04-2014, 10:23 AM
I've sworn off Gatorskins. The first pair I bought, one tire had its sidewall hopelessly slashed after less than 100 miles. Recently another one with less than 500 miles on it decided it didn't want to stay seated on the rim anymore.

I recently put Armadillos on my commuter. One has already flatted (less than 100 miles) due to a glass shard in the middle of the tread.

I had Kenda Kwests on the commuter before that, and they lasted over 4500 miles of abusive riding before the sidewall went south on one. Slow tires, but sturdy.