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Tubular: A type of tire that is glued to the rim and has a cotton casing.

Example usage: I'm going to upgrade my bike with some new tubular tires.

Most used in: Road cycling.

Most used by: Experienced cyclists who are looking for a lightweight tire.

Popularity: 8/10

Comedy Value: 2/10

Also see: Clincher, Tubeless, Sew-up, Tubular Tire,


What is Tubular Cycling?

Tubular cycling, also commonly referred to as ‘tubulars’, is a type of bicycle tire that is sewn around a tube and then glued onto a special rim. They are typically used in professional cycling competitions, such as the Tour de France, as they are lightweight and provide superior grip on wet roads. Unlike clincher tires, which are the more common type of bicycle tire, tubular tires are not held in place by a bead but rather by the adhesive.

In terms of performance, tubular tires offer a smoother ride and better resistance to punctures. They also provide improved cornering and braking due to the higher air pressure that can be used. In addition, tubulars are lighter than clinchers, with an average weight of around 250-280 grams per tire. This makes them a popular choice for professional cyclists, as the lighter weight can help them reach higher speeds.

While tubular tires are often used in professional cycling events, they are not as common on regular roads due to their higher cost and the need for special glue to attach them to the rim. In addition, they require more time and effort to repair if they get a puncture or flat. Despite this, they remain a popular choice among professional cyclists due to their superior performance.


The Origin of the Cycling Term 'Tubular'

The cycling term 'tubular' is thought to have originated in the late 19th century in Europe. The term was first used to describe a type of tire which was made of a rubber tube sewn between two pieces of cloth or leather. This type of tire was often used on racing bicycles and was also known as a 'sew-up' tire.

The tubular tire was found to be superior to the traditional clincher tire, as it was lighter, more puncture resistant, and had a larger contact area with the ground. This made it the tire of choice for professional cyclists, and the term 'tubular' became synonymous with high-performance cycling.

The term 'tubular' is still used today to describe a variety of bicycle-related items, such as tires, rims, and wheels. It is also used in the cycling community as a general descriptor for anything related to high-performance cycling.

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Saddle Slang

Find definitions for all of the technical terms, slang, and acronyms used in cycling. From the different types of bikes and their components, to training techniques, racing terminology and put downs, this dictionary has it all.

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