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best cycle tyre for daily commuting use?

OK cycling fans… Nominations for the best tyre for daily commuting use?
I’m used to and very pleased with the stock Specialized Borough Xc Sport Tyre 700×45 that came with the bike. And to be honest they’ve been good but will need changing soon.
The tyres are for a hybrid styled specialised crosstrail sport disc 2011

So types for daily commuting use: ?
SUBURBAN ROADS; as commuters are aware too often suburban roads are fraught with off-road style obstacles, grit, debris, thorns and potholes.GOOD GRIP:

for the wet, oil and grit.
DURABLE: as used twice daily.
SPEED: good reasonable speed, not too much drag.
PUNCTURE RESISTANCE: The SBXc above only had one puncture in 14mths. But, do I have the tube to thank for that? The tyres are peppered with cuts after a year of suburban roads.

I’m told a wider tyre (a larger contact area) offers more comfort, are less prone to punctures(?), and will provide more grip. I do like the ‘idea’ of the semi slick(?) smooth in the centre with knobbed on the sides.

Nominations for the best tyre for daily commuting use?
What have you got?
What do you recommend?

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Toyah the Toyota is gone…

Toyah the Toyota has served us very well since 2000 – 12 years of reliable motoring.

But I have just sold her to a new owner. We are a one car (one bike) family.

I bought my first car in the late 1980’s- A 1963 Volkswagen Beetle called Beatrix. (You never forget your first!)

Beatrix the VW Beetle
Beatrix the VW Beetle

I bought a second VDub Beetle called Lemon a few years later. (yes she was Yellow)
A few years later, I thought I was a bit more grown up with a Ford Orion (no name).
And then a Mazda 626 – great car! If a but ropey!
I think I had a few carless (and careless!) student years.
I then bought a Ford Escort, called Freddy.
And then in 2000 I bought Toyah the Toyota…

Toyah in the NewForest
Toyah in the NewForest

And then last February (2011) I started riding my bike to work and Toyah was a once a week affair, usually Emma taking her to work.

We’ve put it off for 6 months, but over the winter she was used less than once a week and we have finally said goodbye.

For the next year I will hopefully save:
Insurance £210, Tax £125, and MOT £40: that’s £375 over the year.
By cycling to work I will not buy £50+ worth of petrol a month: that’s >£600 over the year.
Of course there’s servicing and wear and tear which with a car can be considerable – but the ancillary costs for a bike are less.

But let’s just say I hope to save £900 over the coming 12 months.

And then there’s the exercise and perhaps immeasurable health benefits: a good aerobic activity twice a day.
The daily endorphin hits are invaluable. Read more here

Happy daze?

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It’s been a year… 3051 miles recorded over 12 months

Life was somewhat different 12 months ago. 27th Feb 2011. The I had not been on my bike for more than 6 years. Generally I encountered minimal exercise. The prospect of cycling 7 miles each way to work once a week was not an option, it was not gonna happen.

But then one Sunday I just got my old bike out from under the kids trampoline, play pool and nursery boxes and went round the block, about 9 miles.

{GOOGLE MAP}

After a few more weekend jaunts, and then some test rides to work! (what was I thinking?) It’s now been a year since that key decision to get back on my bike.

Now that I cycle, I see good aerobic activity twice a day. The daily endorphin hits are invaluable. The daily experience is arguably also more constructive than a similar trip in a car/bus and cerebrally, thoughts and feelings get a more intense workout. The experience is arguably exhilarating and elevating, depending on your psychological position/attitude in the road-space, social-class struggle – this does need to be kept in check.

At rough tally, I guess I’ve saved 14 miles of fuel a day, that’s ~£1.35×2 for a 7mpl car. That’s ~£54 a month… a nice monthly fuel saving, and extra exercise costs (time & money) not are required.

A nice few hours out on a Sun Mon:

{GOOGLE MAP}

And so, just for the record, since last Feb 27th 2011 through Feb 27th 2012:

Cardio Trainer, recorded: 27 Feb – 4 July = 851.71miles
Endomondo, clocked: 5 July – 22 Dec = 1636.93 miles
3 Jan through 27 Feb 2012 = 563 miles

So that’s = 3051 miles recorded over 12 months… and relax!

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A good old crusty loaf!!

With the challenge set after tweeting GBBO’s Holly a fellow Leicestershirianite(?), I set to bashing some dough round!

A good old crusty loaf!
As I pummelled the dough I was reminded of the muppet in the white van that terrorised me on the way home the other day.
I was in ‘my space’ on the road, with a car in front of me, and they (the white van) seemed to have had a bad day and were not happy (i guess) that I was in front of them? Sor-rry! Revving their engine and blasting their horn behind me, they followed me for a good 900 yards unable to get by. They did eventually overtake me when there was room, and broke infront of me as if to make a point. It left me a tad shaken and seriously wondering if all this cycling malarky was worth it!?
Yes, on the way home a few dozen drivers race-off accelerating away like missled lemmings after being inconvenienced for 10 seconds! Oh I do hope they get there in time!!
But cycling IS worth the occasional encounter with a ready-sliced roadster! Life is worth living. Breath is worth breathing! Time is worth spending! Bread is worth cutting!
I do wonder why so many people are in such a rush to get somewhere? Life’s too short to get their early!
Driving home from work used to take me 25 minutes. Riding takes me 35.
OK some may think I’m a bit of a crusty old loaf for cycling to work but take if from me – it tastes good!!!
Ta Holly!