Tubes Are 'Slime' tubes worth the extra money?

Discussion in 'Bicycle Repair' started by AussieSteve, Dec 10, 2009.

  1. AussieSteve

    AussieSteve Active Member

    I put a slime tube in my electric bike a few weeks ago and got a flat yesterday. When I pulled the tube out to patch it, I was surprised to see that it was only the tiniest pinhole, barely visible. The slime is supposed to seal holes larger than that, up to 1/8" according to the box.
    Is this just an odd tube out, or are 'self-healing tubes' a fallacy?

    ... Steve
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2009

  2. Turtle Tedd

    Turtle Tedd Member

    AussieSteve..same thing here..dont use that nasty stuff any more....bought good tires and tubes
  3. AussieSteve

    AussieSteve Active Member

    Hi Tedd, I didn't think that mine would be an isolated problem.
    I just glued a patch on it, but with a tiny bit of slime oozing out when I roughened and cleaned the area, I'm wondering how well the patch will hold.
    I heard where the leak was and got away with

    I've got a pretty good tyre, but I'll get better and a tyre-liner, I think.
    This electric bike is a PITA to get the rear wheel off and on to change tubes or tyres, takes about 2 hours. I'll wait until my next major puncture then look at liners.

    ... Steve
  4. Turtle Tedd

    Turtle Tedd Member

    I bought the Hemisprere tires and some thornproof heavy duty tubes..wraped rim with about 6 revulutions of electrical problems since for about 400 miles...they use ground up sea shells and rocks down here on some glass...had a bunch of flats with stock Del Mar tires and tubes with slime in...right off the bat.. when they were brand new...glad I spent the money..
  5. AussieSteve

    AussieSteve Active Member

    Is that 'Hemisprere' or 'Hemisphere'? I'll check them out. Thornproof tubes and tyre liners too, I reckon. I can't afford to get stuck miles from home.
    I have double-wall rims, so I don't need the tape. Just a normal rubber rim liner is fine, since the spoke heads come nowhere near the tube.
    This is my first true puncture in 345 km, the previous time was a pinch flat from too low a tyre pressure, so in a way that doesn't count. Yesterday's happened in my own gravel driveway, at the end of a 10km ride. Lucky.

    ... Steve
  6. Turtle Tedd

    Turtle Tedd Member

  7. AussieSteve

    AussieSteve Active Member

    Great, thanks Ted.
    ... Steve
  8. Mountainman

    Mountainman Active Member

    ------------------------- that's it Iam sold

    that's what I have been running for a while now
    last flat was a long time ago -- and was before adding the liners
    I had no spare or pump with me
    it was a long walk
    trying to hold the rear end up a little
    because with the weight of the motor and all
    if I would not have held it up while walking the bike
    the long walk would have wrecked the rear tire

    had a nice experience with the liners when they were new
    was out riding
    at a stop looked down at one of my tires
    oh no
    a large open safty pin sticking into the tire kind of sideways
    I pulled it out
    it had not gone through
    ------------------------- that's it Iam sold

    as we ride those THINGS
  9. AussieSteve

    AussieSteve Active Member

    Ha Ha, I'm sold too.
    When I got the pinch flat on the electric bike a couple of weeks ago, I didn't just push it home but kept the electric power on to help and was surprised at how well the tyre fared. About 2 miles. Some on lawn but most on concrete and bitumen. I still put a new tyre on because the old one was s h i t, but a friend took the old one and there were no bulges etc in the walls. The electric bike has a h e l l of a lot of weight over the back wheel; the battery and the hub motor. I expected the tyre to be chopped to pieces and the rim to possibly be damaged, but no way could I lift the rear end and carry it that far.

    ... Steve
  10. wheelbender6

    wheelbender6 Well-Known Member

    The effectiveness of a slimed tube will depend on where you are and what type of tire you use. The slime works well for me in the desert, where our biggest puncture threats seem to be the small thorns that get scattered by the wind.
    If you have a nail or thorn lodged in the tire, the tube will generally leak until you remove the nail or thorn.
    I think the slime tubes are worth a try.
  11. AussieSteve

    AussieSteve Active Member

    Depends on where you are? How do you mean? Nothing about that on the box.
    From the box:-
    "Smart Tube"
    'Fibro-Seal Technology'
    'Seals instantly'

    "The 'Slime Smart Tube will instantly seal most punctures in the tread up to 1/8". "

    B u l l s h i t

    Where I was: in my own driveway.
    The hole: not measureable. (Take a pin, poke a hole....)
    Slime: nothing, went flat immediately and needed patching.
    Carefully checked tyre, found hole but nothing lodged in it. I'm not silly enough to leave a nail or thorn lodged in the tyre.

    Recommended: Inflate with valve at 10 o' clock or 2 o' clock, rotate the wheel to create seal.
    This is an electric bike. I leaned it on the stand and gave it full throttle. NoGo. Still leaked like a sieve.
    Even when the tube was out, I tried partially inflating it and holding a finger on the hole, no good, then wiping a finger over the hole, all to no avail.

    Nowadays, in the 21st century, we want products we can rely on, especially with these little HT engines in the equation - they're bad enough.
    These 'Slime' tubes might work sometimes, but they're not reliable.
    From the sound of things, not even close. I had a chat to my friend who owns the local bike shop today. (Does lots of competition touring etc. He sells them but won't use them himself. Reckons they're a waste of money and that patches don't stick well to them.
    Give me tyre liners, thornproof tubes, kevlar, anything but Slime.
    They're not worth a try - the money can be much better spent.
    (My opinion)

    ... Steve
  12. happycheapskate

    happycheapskate Active Member

    I think the slime tubes cost $10 for convenience. A pair (or 3) heavy duty Inline tube should be the same, right? And you can get a big bottle of the slime for 8-10$USD.

    I have only tried it so far in a set of tires with built in slime tubes, from .
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2009
  13. gothicguy64

    gothicguy64 Member

    i see where ur hedin in but try mbb/imports he has 75$ for 2 tyres an allmost run flats
    an if u are worried get slime inner liners an big-w 12 thorn resist tubes

    i personnally use a spray can of shoozt an cheep rubber ...

  14. AussieSteve

    AussieSteve Active Member

    G'day Brad. Maybe I just bought a bad brand of slime tube. 'Smart Tube' was the name. Still, the very first tiny little hole and it did nothing.
    The spray cans might be better. I used to use a brand of sealant called 'Finilec' years ago in my dirt bikes and it worked OK. (It wasn't slime, but worked in a similar way.)
    As soon as I finish sorting out the 2-stroke's engine, (new studs all round, billet head, SBP air filter, new carb w/ 0.72 main jet), then tyres, tubes and liners will follow for both bikes. Removing the rear wheel of the electric bike on the road is out of the question.
    Thanks for pointing me toward MBB Imports. I'd heard the name before but didn't realise that they were in Sydney, Australia. Feel like a bit of a dummy, not knowing about the nearest supplier of spares for my 2-stroke.
    S h i t, I could almost ride that far.
    I'm just checking out their site now.

    Had a real good look and can't find tyres anywhere at MBB. When did you get them? Recently?

    ... Steve
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2009
  15. chopperjoe

    chopperjoe New Member

    tire in tire

    just did the tire in tire setup, 1.62 into a 2.125, cut off bead, smooth installation. hope it helps with the flat situation, seems hard as a rock at 35 psi
  16. bamabikeguy

    bamabikeguy Active Member

    $10 thornproofs are good enough for mine.

    There is some "magical spin" you are supposed to do on installation, put it through a clothes dryer-ish spin cycle for I forgot how many minutes/miles.

    Probably P.R. bogusness.

    The thornproofs are worth it for ONE great reason, they hold air pressure for up to a year, you jump on it and ride, instead of hunt up the air pump.
  17. happycheapskate

    happycheapskate Active Member

    Bamabikeguy, what is the thornproof. Is it a tube or a tire? Is it a brand? I am curious.

    Tire tubes or even tubeless tires that hold air up to a year without leaking, would be an amazing accomplishment.

    I keep a tire pump in my mo bic travel bag, or on my mountain bike frame, and have an electric 12v pump in my auto.

    I have had mostly good luck in avoiding punctures, and only have natural residual leaks to deal with (tubes are porous to a degree, and even tubeless tires invariably leak some like automobile tires, at the intersection of tire bead and wheel.)
  18. bamabikeguy

    bamabikeguy Active Member

    thornproof, punctureproof, industrial grade are all interchangeable names for the thick $10 tubes, including the slimed ones.

    My bike shop stocks Pyramid brand.

    If you want a tire upgrades, the $25 4-layered Serfa's Drifter is on the rear wheels of 2 of my personal bikes. I rec Serfas upgrades to customers, when they wear out the stock tires on their bikes after 1,000 miles or so.

    Another tire upgrade I used on the recumbent's front was the Odyssey Path 2.1 for $20.
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2010
  19. robin bird

    robin bird Member

    Because you are on the other side of the world the slime probably sticks against the rim--mine work great we have cactus blown onto our trails
  20. Goat Herder

    Goat Herder Member

    The silly thin tubes with slime in them that Walmart places as such are an absolute joke. Get leather thick thorn proof tubes put plenty o slime in it done. They are liken to a car tire tube. Got lots of goat heads here hence my name.

    I have made it home with a little bit of the ooz on me. Don't mind at all did not have to walk the dog home. One time was a razzer blade, glass, nails, can't forget them goat heads. If a nail should puncture both sides of the tube your done. At which point patches don't work either. So I carry a thin crappy tube with a patch kit for questionable runs.

    Mostly I don't carry anything pump patches whatever. I just don't get any problems. I did notice some tread designs are more apt to flip a nail just right so the back tire catches it. [ least that's where I ever caught one]. I still make fun of those thin cheezie tubes. Slime nothing will ever keep those inflated.

    I have put old thorn proof tubes into new tires with pinch cracks all over them from the old tire. They kept on trucken! I don't suggest using a questionable tube that could blow out at high speed. Like my said old thorn proof tubes all I had at the time they worked. That's also why me personally just will not use them thin tubes! For a peddling maybe not for 30 mph runs!