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Old 06-03-10, 08:28 AM   #1
BigBlueToe
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Shelf Life of Inner Tubes?

So a company is having a sale - 5 inner tubes for $10. I don't really need them, but that's a good price. If I stock up and then don't use the last of them for 5 years, will it still be good?
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Old 06-03-10, 08:35 AM   #2
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keep them in a cool, dark place
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Old 06-03-10, 08:39 AM   #3
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cool dark place, sealed in some tupperwear isn't bad.
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Old 06-03-10, 09:12 AM   #4
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I store my new tires/tubes in a vacuum sealed bag. I steal it out of the kitchen, when my wife isn't looking!

Then, I keep them in the cool dark basement.
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Old 06-03-10, 09:44 AM   #5
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would wrapping in aluminum foil help?
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Old 06-03-10, 10:37 AM   #6
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Quote:
would wrapping in aluminum foil help?
... Only from CIA mind control. I couldn't hep it. It would be better than nothing at all, but...

Like Wanderer said about the vacuum bags, the more air you can keep out the longer anything will last...just like what they are made for freezing meat, etc. I've bought prim rib roasts, cut them into ribeye stakes and 6 months later they are as good as the day they went in with zero freezer burn, etc.

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Old 06-03-10, 10:55 AM   #7
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I've got period correct goodyear inner-tubes on my mid 60's phillips rod brake bike that hold air. If they arn't original they are still a few decades old.

You should be fine.
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Old 06-03-10, 01:39 PM   #8
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I stored some unwrapped in my garage on a shelf. Big mistake, in less than a year they developed big holes in the folds. I guess it was a combination of heat and ozone that destroyed them. Now I store tubes in a cloths closet and they seem to last forever.
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Old 06-03-10, 01:45 PM   #9
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+1, light and air are the enemies of innertubes. keep them free from both as much as possible, and they could make it to 5 years without problems.
I had Specialized latex tubes from the 80's last over 18 years in a bike tire before they finally blew up catastrophically when I aired it up after a major haitus from use. no matter what you do, they WILL eventually deteriorate. only thing you can do is slow down the process.

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Old 06-03-10, 01:56 PM   #10
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$2 tubes are not uncommon.
Some shops and online retailers have them on sale at that price frequently.
Use the cash for a coffee.

Enjoy
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Old 06-03-10, 01:59 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigBlueToe View Post
So a company is having a sale - 5 inner tubes for $10. I don't really need them, but that's a good price. If I stock up and then don't use the last of them for 5 years, will it still be good?
That's what I always pay for tubes. I get mine at pricepoint.com. I usually wait for one of their free shipping sales, and buy quite a few at once.

+1 I have picked up 30 year old bikes with original tires and tubes, and the tubes were still fine. The tires are usually dry rotted, so I tend to toss the tires.
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Old 06-03-10, 03:57 PM   #12
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Not just the UV and ozone in the air. Heat is also a killer of rubber based products. And most garages reach sauna like temperatures in the summer months. That'll kill tires and other rubber bits just as much as UV light and ozone.

So sealed in a ziplock baggie and then kept in a dark place in your basement where the temperature stays consistently cool and they'll last for many years.
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Old 06-04-10, 11:05 AM   #13
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A little baby powder in the baggie might help too, to keep the rubber from sticking to itself.
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Old 06-04-10, 11:23 AM   #14
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Let's recap;
Vacuum sealer $38
Tupperware $14
Ziplock bags $3
Baby powder $5
So you can store tubes you admit you don't need and can be found for the same price anytime?
Sounds like a deal to me.
Hopefully all your flats occur while riding down the hallway near the closet where you cache is stored.

Enjoy
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Old 06-04-10, 12:18 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by powers2b View Post
Let's recap;
Vacuum sealer $38
Tupperware $14
Ziplock bags $3
Baby powder $5
So you can store tubes you admit you don't need and can be found for the same price anytime?
Sounds like a deal to me.
Hopefully all your flats occur while riding down the hallway near the closet where you cache is stored.

Enjoy
And which will last for years and years, even just stored in a closet, in the box they com in/.
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Old 06-04-10, 12:26 PM   #16
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Don't do it!
I hit the buy button earlier this year on a bulk deal for 10 tubes. As I put them on my parts shelf I smiled thinking I would be set for tubes for a few years to come. The next day I had the first of what turned into a rash of flats that continued for a week

I still have one new tube sitting on the shelf so I guess it worked out for the best. Just my experience, ymmv
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Old 06-04-10, 12:49 PM   #17
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Don't do it!
I hit the buy button earlier this year on a bulk deal for 10 tubes. As I put them on my parts shelf I smiled thinking I would be set for tubes for a few years to come. The next day I had the first of what turned into a rash of flats that continued for a week

I still have one new tube sitting on the shelf so I guess it worked out for the best. Just my experience, ymmv
Consider buying a patch kit. Much cheaper.
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