CST Sensamo Control – Review pt. 1

Welcome to part 1 of what I hope is a long term review of the Cheng Shin Tire (CST) Sensamo Control tire.

After making the switch from 26″ to 700c on the GT Outpost I could no longer use my Schwalbe Marathon Plus Tour tires. After two years I feel like they had about 8,000 miles on them and still have some life left.

The first replacements were Kenda Kwik 700×30 cross tires. Gum wall, small tread pattern, wore pretty quick on the road but still managed to give me 2500 or so miles.

My LBS had a pair of NOS Specialized Cross Baldy Team 700×32 for super cheap. I might have gotten 1750 miles put of them before their age, dry rot and trail abuse started breaking them down and clipping off the shoulder knobbies.

The Baldy’s were replaced by a set of Continental Cyclocross Race 700×35. I got them in a pinch for a last minute race and kept them on through record snowfall. After about 1000 miles they were showing signs of major wear and at $60/each I couldn’t afford to murder them.

In come the CST Sensamo Controls.

I had originally wanted the CST Cultivator but couldn’t get it through the LBS. Next tire at that price and size was the Sensamo. And I really needed a road tire more than anything.

The Marathons have reflective sidewalls. So do the Sensamos.

The Marathons have a puncture resistant strip. Same on the Sensamos.

The Marathons were $55 each.
The Sensamos? $50 for the pair.

The Sensamos mounted easily on my Origin 8 Track Attak rims. Their maiden voyage covered asphalt, concrete, dirt, grass and gravel. Almost 28 miles at the end of the day. Through the best and worst parts of town.

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Note: The CST Sensamo Control is listed as 700×35 but marked on the sidewall as 37-700. The difference between a 32 and a 35/37 is causing my brakes to drag ever so slightly. Opening the levers to the maintenance position eliminated the drag. If these tires last half as long as a Marathon Plus Tour it will be absolutely worth changing tires every 4000 miles.

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Special thanks to John at Hoopers for the hour of “do you have this tire? Can you get this tire? What can you get?”



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