Flat tire epidemic;
I know cold and flu season is coming but I've had more trouble in the past few months with keeping air in my tires than in the past 10 years. I am posting under beginner's corner because my flat tire epidemic makes me feel like I need to go back to biking/simple repairs 101.
I used to peruse here years ago and I could not get my log in and password to jibe so I re-registered. I got more serious into bicycling in early 2000 and did a lot of reading and lurking here for ideas. Thank you all for being a great resource. I ended up test riding a Marin f/s that was $800 or so in 2002 or 2003, bought it and returned it with in a few hours. W/o lock out on the rear shock, I was not sold. I'm lazy and didn't want the shock sucking so much of my pedal power. I liked the fit and feel of a lower end Kona a few models up from the base bike and purchased it. It's a 6000 series aluminum hard-tail that was around $650 I think.
Tires - flats; I recently went to a big fat tire like 2.2 or 2.5 and it may have the wire bead. I've been using Forte tubes and I suspect they are part of my problem. Has anyone used Forte with good success as a durable tube that holds up ?
I am either causing my own flats by not being adept at a super tight fit tire onto the rim as I re-install or the tubes might be too thin and not as good as other brands. Naturally, I want to blame something other than myself. I'm nearly 52 years old and have successfully changed/patched a fair amount of tire/tubes over the years with no problems but I never had a half dozen issues within a years time ever and I don't ride that often.
It's not so much getting a flat riding, it's finding the tire flat a few days later and patching it after pulling all part and re installing, then finding another leak. I run my hand around the inside of the tire casing and the rim to feel for burrs or thorns - finding nothing.
One other question; I used to use the scab patches some w/o problems but the guy at Performance said those are only temporary patches and I should use real glue. Any thoughts on how accurate that is ?
Input is welcome, I refuse to go pay someone to fix my tires (or at least I'll refuse to admit it if I end up doing so). Thank you.
I personally have no experience with them but I have heard from more than a few people that the tubes are not quality and the valve tends to separate from the tube itself causing the leak. I'm not sure if this holds up in your instance too but it wouldn't hurt to try a different tube right? Sorry I don't have a conclusive answer but their rep seems to be very very poor. Hope you figure it out
What I have found that works:
- Spread some talcum powder in the casing of the tire and roll it around to spread it out.
- with only one of the beads on the rim, stuff the slightly inflated tube in the tire.
- Carefully roll the other bead on the rim, keeping the tube in the tire away from the rim
- Once on, inflate half way. Then pinch the tire and tube working your way around the whole rim to make sure the tube is not getting pinched.
-Then inflate fully and ride.
I have found this to address flat issues using any brand of tube. Good luck.
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Thanks for the replies.
I'm thinking it may be partly me and partly the brand of tube. Today I found the first tiny slice longitudinal at about 7 o'clock with the stem at the top. I mark (mental note) the area so I know here to check the rim or tire casing for a burr or thorn.
It was maybe 1/32 long. After patching, soaking in the water to double check and then reassembly, it still didn't hold air long. The second check found an identical teeny slice approx 5 or 6 " away and also on the inside of the rim wall (same as the other). It seems almost too coincidental and I again checked the rim wall surface.
For now, the tire is holding and I'll either be fine to ride in the morning or I'm taking the 91 HardRock out with less aggressive tires that do hold air.
I think I"m done with Forte tubes though. The tire is a Forté Tsali 2.2 and so far, I love the tight pattern for hard scrabble and pavement, and it floats pretty well on sand an mushy gravel.
Last edited by bachman1961; 10-09-2013 at 09:18 PM.
Reason: added thought..
I've used forte tubes on my road bike with no problems . The slits sound like pinch flats .i.e. not enough pressure .How much are you running? Forte tubes are made for Preformace by someone like Kenda or Chen Shing ,so you might end up with the same tubes. Think about going tubeless.
+1 on pinch flats. That's why I listed the steps to avoid this. I run my tires at 35 psi and am no light weight, and have only had about 2 flats in 20 years. Worth a try.
Also, I replace my tubes every couple of years. Patches to me are only to get home till I can swap in a new tube. I don't like to gamble.
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tubes are tubes. some are a little nicer, but Forte tubes are just fine. the trick to diagnosing flats is to study the hole in the tube. the shape of the hole will tell you if it's a blowout, pinch, or puncture.
next, take only one side of the tire off when you pull the tube out and leave the tire half on the rim without rotating the tire. note the location of the hole in the tube and that will give you an idea of where to look in the tire and rim for issues. is there a tiny bit of glass or a thorn in the tire? a slice in the tire, a metal splinter sticking out of the rim, is the rim strip covering all of the spoke holes?
also, are you using any tools to install the tire? the only tools you need to install a tire is your bare hands.
patches are tricky. if you do it right[/I], they permanently seal the hole. follow the instructions carefully, it's not exactly intuitive.
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