Continental Gator Hardshell Tires - Clincher

4/5 (11 Reviews)
MSRP : $50.00

Product Description

If you log more miles commuting to work and around town than some pros do in training, the Continental Gator Hardshell Road Tire is the answer.

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Reviews 1 - 5 (11 Reviews Total) | Next 5

User Reviews

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Rod T

Date Reviewed: November 27, 2016

Strengths:    Very Durable and "tough", better traction than they should have for such a durable tire, foldable

Weaknesses:    None! (For a great, all condition training tire)

Bottom Line:   
Bought these after looking over reviews for similar tires on the internet. I was looking for a 25mm tire that would have very few, if any, flats.... and last for 1000+ miles..... without being "slippery" or having a "stiff" ride. I live in the Phoenix, Arizona area, and the roads, trails, and car drivers suck, suck, and hate. Don't get me wrong, there are adequate bike lanes, many paved and unpaved trails, and plenty of "decent" car drivers. BUT.... the bike lanes are full of debris, the bike paths are poorly maintained, and there are just enough haters to keep you staring in your rear-view helmet mirror... gods help you if you don't wear one!

Anyway, I have 700 miles on these tires so far (very little tread wear!), with no flats, which is pretty amazing considering the glass, sharp rocks, unrepaired cracks, 2 inch lifted "edges" on the cement bike paths, gravel roads, bullheads, cactus thorns.... you get my point.
Sometimes I hear small rocks launch so hard from my tire that they sound like a ricochet from a small pistol as they rocket off into a curb, wall, or just into space... but I still don't have any cuts in the tread!
The traction factor: Excellent when on dry hard-surface, good when wet, good in gravel and dirt. Like I said, MUCH better that I expected from a "durable" tire.
If these tires continue to perform this well, I will definitely buy them again!

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Matt

Date Reviewed: October 16, 2016

Strengths:    Durable

Weaknesses:    Heavy, difficult to install (for me, anyways).

Bottom Line:   
I have a few thousand miles combined on both the 28mm and 25mm version of this tire on two different bikes. Three tires in total, though I did just put a fourth 25mm on my single speed bike, which previously only had the Hardshell on the rear.

I have one puncture in those miles, that being from a nail that went through the tread of one of the 28mm tires and came out through the sidewall, very close to the rim. That tire is still in use today; a testament to the durability IMO. I've picked shards of glass out of them with tweezers more than once, but none of those caused any more than a cut in the outer layer of tread.

I have 2 of the 28mm with wire bead and one of the 25mm in wire bead, in addition to one of the 25mm with kevlar bead. They were all pretty difficult to install for me. The 28mm tires required me to let them sit in the sun for a while to warm up before I could get them on the rim, even with levers. The kevlar bead tire was a bit easier to install, but still required levers. That one is brand new, so it may become easier over time (as I've found most tires do) to remove/reinstall. Overall, I'd buy these again any time. I'm a "fast commuter" and put in about 60 miles a week (3 days commuting per week) and am at the mercy of train schedules, and having a reliable tire is foremost in my purchasing decision. If I have a major failure, I'll miss my train, and will be in a world of hurt. I trust these to get me there and back again.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Allen DeLaney a Recreational Rider

Date Reviewed: April 2, 2016

Strengths:    Bought 2 sets inAug 2015 700 x 28, mounted to 25+ HED Ardennes rims. Given the hx of some early failures due to mfg defects in side walls, we rode these on pavement and gravel around central Fla for about 250 mi w no problems or flats. We saw no sign of the bead or sidewall problems mentioned in blog posts from both sides of the pond since this model hit the market. We then biked 650 mi on 2 bikes thru the backroads and city streets of Ireland, many farm backroads and trails, especially in the NW were extremely rough, returning to the states we continued roads and trails in Fla, where many locals dispose of beer bottles by tossing them in the road. So after 8 months, our vote on puncture resistance is excellent as we have 2 bikes x 1400 mi ea w no flats! Over time, we discovered that 70-75 psi is ideal for rough or gravel surfaces. About 85-90 on pavement. There seems to be a little more resistance than 23 mm tires, but a lot more comfort, and excellent wet traction. Our puncture experience is w heavy butyl tubes. We've spent 15 years riding over 4000 mi per yr, and have tried most clinchers available, but have almost never made it more than 200-300 mi w/o a puncture flat in the best circumstance

Weaknesses:    Tire levers required on the HED Ardennes+ rims when tire or fingers are cold

Bottom Line:   
Excellent value and the best puncture resistance we've ever experienced in a multi surface 700x 28 tire at a moderate price. Compared to over 40,000 road miles on 4 different Continentals, Panaracer, at least 3 Michelin models, and Vredstein, this is a lot of tire for your money in a 28x700 tire.

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Favorite Ride:   S Italy, almost anywhere

Bike Setup:   Custom adventure carbon road bikes, w road disc brakes, and HED Ardennes + wheels

Overall Rating:3
Value Rating:2
Submitted by Jon Winkeller a Recreational Rider

Date Reviewed: September 6, 2014

Strengths:    Reputation

Weaknesses:    Continual sidewall blowouts

Bottom Line:   
I recently bought a Fuji Gran Fondo 2.0 and decided to change tires after experiencing a number of puncture flats (riding in Arizona) on the stock tires. My manager, who's an avid rider, swears by the Continental Gator Skins; so I thought I'd do one better and get the Gator Hardshells, figuring that they'd be more puncture resistant. Needless to say, I was looking forward to fewer tire repairs while out riding. So far that hasn't happened. On the first day riding with my NEW tires, I had TWO sidewall blowouts within a 1/2 - 3/4 mile of each other when on the second one I realized that the cording in the tire bead had completely separated from the bead in an area about 2-3 inches. Once I was rescued by my daughter, I went straight to the retailer that I purchased them from and they replaced the tube and the tire without any questions. Writing this experience off as a "Manufacturer defect" I was once again feeling confident that I'd have better luck on the new tire. Last weekend (Labor Day), I was on my way to a group ride when I had another flat. A section of the road I was riding was really rough so I just figured it was a minor pinch flat and fixed it prior to starting the ride. Once on the ride, I had no problems. Today (09-06-14) I had just pumped up my tires (100psi) and was leaving to meet up for another group ride. I got down the street a total of two houses when I had ANOTHER sidewall blowout. My frustration level has about gone through the roof with these tires. I am now sitting in my living room (instead of out riding) waiting for the bike shop to open so I can exchange these tires from something better: I hope.....

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Similar Products Used:   First set of "after market" tires that I've purchased

Bike Setup:   Fuji Gran Fondo 2.0

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Nick a Road Racer

Date Reviewed: April 3, 2012

Strengths:    Bulletproof--at least for me so far...

Weaknesses:    Manufacturing defect on first tire but was rectified imediately...

Bottom Line:   
Almost 4,000 miles and no flat. The back tire is getting worn as 25% of those miles are on a trainer. I run over lots of glass and other crap--roads in southern California suck--and am surprised that I haven't had a flat yet. Probably will now that I've written this review...I had Vittoria Zaffiros before my Gatorskins and had two flats in under 1,000 miles. My wife has Bontrager X-Lite Hards and has had one flat in about 500 miles. The only complaint I have is one of the tires had to be sent back because when I inflated it there was a large bubble in side wall...manufacturing defect.

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Favorite Ride:   Death Ride

Price Paid:    $70.00

Purchased At:   BiketiresDirect

Similar Products Used:   Vittoria Zaffiro, Bontrager X-Lite Hard

Bike Setup:   Madone 5.9

Reviews 1 - 5 (11 Reviews Total) | Next 5

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