Excerpts from letter to Performance Bicycle:
A picture is worth a thousand words.
This refers to what happened on the very first ride after installing the Performance Bike Ultralite tube catalog no. 00-8180 of which I had ordered two on 6/17/05. It was installed in a Panaracer 700 x 23C tire rated for 150 PSI mounted on a Mavic hook rim).
The first twenty miles were smooth and fast with good responsive steering and acceleration. Specifically, there was absolutely no warning of a tire going soft UNTIL I took a very familiar ninety degree turn at 22 mph as I always do. However, with the failure of the tube and the sudden softening of the front tire, the increased G-forces of the turn caused the RIM to carry the load and, of course, there is virtually no traction when it's metal on (CLEAN AND DRY) asphalt. I will not soon forget the sound of the metal rim grinding sideways along the asphalt!
I am usually the last person to complain, but this HURT (AND STILL DOES -shoulder, elbow, hip, buttock, anterior upper chest and scapula- not to mention bending bike parts and marring the screen face of my heart rate monitor).
Given that this appears related to a quality control issue I thought that you had better be aware of this. The bonding of the valve stem to the tube was defective. I have installed many tubes in my day and have not subjected the valve to any stress, be it lateral or linear such as might occur with over-tightening the valve stem stabilizing nut. The hole in the rim has no sharp edge and what edge there is has been covered with three layers of small duct tape squares over the normal rim cloth tape. The tire was inflated with a floor pump to 135 PSI as measured with your Zefal pressure gauge. I had purchased a second (identical) tube and am definitely afraid of attempting to use it.
Have other readers had similar failures of this (made in China by Kenda) brand with the Performance lable?
I thought that readers should be aware of this kind of failure for obvious safety reasons. Performance said they sould submit the issue to their Tech department ( and refund my purchase price for the two tubes).
Has anyone found a brand name light weight tube that has been more pridictably reliable???
Many thanks for your input. Have a great and safe biking experience.