Tubes Not a smart choice (copied thread....good INFO)

Discussion in 'Bicycle Repair' started by Kep1a, Dec 17, 2008.

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  1. Kep1a

    Kep1a Guest

    Well let me start by saying I should have known better.

    I knew the flat tire thing was going to be a bummer if I got one while too far from home. I ordered thorn proof tubes, tuffe tire liners and put tire slime in the tubes and installed Velox rim tape. I did my wife's bike front and rear but just had time to get only my rear done. I figured the rear was the worst one and I do Carry a patch kit in my back pack.

    Well on my way home from work at 3am I got a flat on the front. To say It was disastrous is an understatement. You see the seam in the Tube split. It went from air to flat in a nanosecond at twenty plus miles per hour. The tire flopped side to side on the rim and became almost impossible to control. If I used the rear brake it was worse. I slid my body back over the rear tire and slowed with only the throttle and did my best to keep it going some what straight. When I got to less than 5 miles per hour the tire violently would bunch up and flop side to side with literally no delay between swapping sides of the rim.

    I got down to under 2 mph and the tire bunched up and acted as if I was applying a brake to only one side of the fork. It turned the tire abruptly right and I steered it left but to my horror the stem turned in the fork. Over I started to go with the handle bar trapping my left leg against the fuel tank. I caught myself with my hands a hung there like I was going to do a push up with a half twist. I tried to determine how to get free of the handle bar and my whizzer and finaly wiggled my way out.

    I had no injuries other than where the compression release lever on the handle bar drug down my leg causing a scrape 8 to 10 inches long going down my left thigh.

    I am telling you this story so you will not need to learn the hard way like I did. I hope that you may learn from my error.

    1. Use a thorn proof tube at a minimum
    2. Use Tuffe tire liners
    3. Use a new proper sized cloth rim tape (Velox)
    4. Consider tire slime

    Consider better quality tires and ensure your stem is tight and will not slip when you hold the tire between your legs and turn the bars. Yes test it do not consider the allen bolt to be tight enough to be OK. My bolt seemed tight enough but took a full turn to lock the bars solid.

    I was very lucky and only scraped my leg, scuffed the tac housing, edge of the front fender and edge of the left brake lever. I did not break or damaged anything else. I did not even scuff myself on the pavement since I was effectively stopped when I went over.

    Learn the easy way, from my stupidity!

    PS: I am going to try the new airless tires. I read about some that are being tested to be DOT certified for motorcycles and cars. I called the manufacturer and even spoke with the owner Kai. I found out they have these available for bikes now. I ordered them and will report back my findings.

  2. Mountainman

    Mountainman Active Member

    thank you Kep1a --- for reminding us --- to be ready at all times --- blowout !!

    sometimes while riding down this mountain with next to no bike lane
    cars and buses are passing very close at high speeds
    there was a thread around here about threading the needle - someTHING like that
    stating that those known dangerous riding places
    become better in time -- as we ride them more -- riding experience gains

    I am not very sure about that
    this mountain riding scares the heck out of me
    and if I would have a blow out such as you explained -- MAY BE A KILLER

    my first crash on a motor bike was at the age of 6 or 7
    7 1/2 hp -- over the handle bars at 35 or 40 mph
    woke up some minutes later my grandfather said

    as you did -- we got to walk away -- that's always a blessing

    have fun as you ride that THING
  3. srdavo

    srdavo Active Member


    Glad ya got er shut down, as well as you did! (minimal injury & damage....coulda been really bad)

    Thanks for posting this "Wake Up Call".
    Lots of good points to think about!!

    thanks again, Kep... & glad you are ok!!
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2008
  4. Irish John

    Irish John Guest

    That is all good advice re taping the rims well and using thornproof tubes and slime with good quality tyres. A rapid deflation of the front tyre at speed is any motorcyclists greatest fear. A back blowout is nowhere near as uncontrollable. It's worth noting that if you keep out of the gutters and road margins you'll greatly lessen the chance of a puncture. Also look for sharp gravel chips on the smooth asphalt & avoid them too.
    A puncture on the front maybe much easier to mend but if it deflates suddenly it's much more serious.
  5. spunout

    spunout Member

    i avoid slime. slime works only on the tiniest of holes (thorn-sized). i carry fix-a-flat for bigger problems (staples), and if you use fix-a-flat in a slime'd tube, the entire mixture turns to a watery consistency. rendering it all useless.
    but if you dont have plans on using fix-a-flat ever, slime is good.