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Thread: Ticking tubular

  1. #1
    Senior Member bsektzer's Avatar
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    Ticking tubular

    I just mounted a set of Vittoria Corsa Evo CX's, and I love these tires. The ride is like nothing I've experienced before. BUT... The front tire in particular is making a distinct ticking noise, one per revolution, that gets louder as I go faster. Extremely annoying. The sound appears to correspond with a bit of a hop in the tire (it's definitely NOT in the wheel) near the valve stem.

    The rear tire exhibits the same hop in about the same location, but doesn't seem to make the same sound, or if it does, it's much less noticeable.

    Any ideas about how I might quiet down these otherwise marvelous tires?

    Thanks,
    Bert
    Last edited by bsektzer; 01-30-12 at 03:44 PM.

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    That's one of the reasons I left vittoria aside long time ago, the darn hump in some models is just ridiculous. In my experience there is nothing much to do, I have had the same situation than u several times and after 25+ years using tubulars no clue if there is a cure for that.

    By the way how much air are u putting to the tubbies??? if this is your 1st time using them and if you are comming from clinchers the 1st bad custom is to put the max air to what the tubular says and that could be some of the problem, never go over 110 or 120... 95 to 100 is like ok. Try with 80 pounds and go riding down the block.

  3. #3
    Senior Member bsektzer's Avatar
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    Pressure might be part of the problem since I was running them at 130 psi. I had been running Tufo Hi-Composite, which were very smooth, but had ridiculously high rolling resistance. I'll try the Vittoria's at 110 psi and see if that helps.

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    Check to see if the tick is from the valve stem rattling against the rim. This can be a problem and a wrap of tape or similar around the stem will quiet it down.

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    Senior Member bsektzer's Avatar
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    Thanks Hillrider. I'll give than a try. I played around with tire pressure all the way down to 90 psi, and no joy.

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    It's MY mountain DiabloScott's Avatar
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    Sometimes the base tape can stick out a little farther in one are and rub on the brake pad or something... especially where it overlaps near the valve.
    http://diabloscott.blogspot.com/

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    Senior Member bsektzer's Avatar
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    We have a winner !!!!!!!!!

    Thank you Hillrider!! I wedged a toothpick in the stem hole to take up any 'slack' between it and the stem itself, and bingo!!, no more ticking.

    Man that was a great call. Thanks!

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    A common cure is to cut off a piece of drinking straw and slip it over the presta valve.

  9. #9
    Senior Member bsektzer's Avatar
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    Jim & Hill,

    The toothpick thing is just a temporary fix that saves me pulling the tire off the rim and re-gluing. Both of your ideas, tape wrap or a drinking straw are excellent candidates for a more permanent solution once circumstances force a tire removal in the future. I'm just thrilled to have this ticking thing solved because, to tell the truth, I'd have learned to put up with it for the sake of the outstanding ride and incredibly low rolling resistance these tires offer. Now I've got all the tire's virtues with no vices. How sweet is that!

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    Quote Originally Posted by bsektzer View Post
    ..... The front tire in particular is making a distinct ticking noise, one per revolution, that gets louder as I go faster..... The sound appears to correspond with a bit of a hop in the tire ... near the valve stem....
    The rear tire exhibits the same hop in about the same location, but doesn't seem to make the same sound, or if it does, it's much less noticeable.

    Bert,

    Stop riding immediately this could be an indicator of a dangerous situation.

    The problem isn't the tire, it's your mounting job.

    The hop and the noise are both because the tire isn't seated properly and both the hop and noise are signs of excess slack on one side of the valve, It could be that the tire crept because of poor gluing, or because you mounted it unevenly.

    To under stand, consider that the tire has bias ply construction and when inflated will get fatter and shorter. It's this principle that holds a tubular into the hollow of the rim. When mounted evenly a tire will be the same width all the way around, but if not stretched evenly some areas will be fatter than others.

    It's also possible that the glue isn't holding and the tire is creeping. Fronts do this from braking forces, and rears creep in the opposite direction from acceleration. That's the real role of tubular cement, to keep the tire from shifting. the danger is that this slack near the valve can lead to the tire rolling off the rim causing a crash, or if allowed to continue creeping to tear off the valve, which likewise in no fun.

    You need to remove the tire, which will give you a sense of the integrity of your glue job, and remount it evenly. Before the glue sets hard inflate the tire, spin the wheel, and if necessary spread the tire away from fat areas to thin areas. Then allow to dry.

    One trick, I've been doing for 40 years or so. Drill the tire side of the valve hole oversize so the valve can float in it. (leave the exposed side alone) Now if a tire creeps you'll know immediately because the valve will be crooked.

    BTW- your problem brings back memories of riding in the mountains with a badly glued tire. It was August, I'd flatted and didn't have the time for the newly mounted tire to set properly. The hot temps and heat from braking didn't help either and the tire crept like crazy. Fortunately it was the front. I stopped every few miles, flipped the wheel and let it creep in the other direction. This went on for 2 days before I was able to get it to settle down.
    FB
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  11. #11
    Senior Member bsektzer's Avatar
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    FB,

    Thanks for your input, but I'm pretty sure the tire is properly mounted. There's 2 good coats of glue on the rim and on the base tape, and I carefully stretched the tire out evenly on both sides of the stem as I slipped it onto the rim. This isn't the first set of tubulars I've mounted by a long shot, and I'm well aware of the issues you reference. Also, the tire/glue was allowed to set up for 48 hours before being ridden on. Furthermore, I make a habit of thoroughly checking any newly glued up tubular for any slack or lack of adhesion before riding on it.

    Given the noticeable 'hump' in the tire at the valve stem when dry mounting it on an old rim to pre-stretch, I'm thinking the simple shimming of the stem is the solution. In any case, I'd be reluctant to take a drill bit to a carbon rim.

    Bert

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    Quote Originally Posted by bsektzer View Post
    FB,

    Thanks for your input, but I'm pretty sure the tire is properly mounted.

    Given the noticeable 'hump' in the tire at the valve stem when dry mounting it on an old rim to pre-stretch, I'm thinking the simple shimming of the stem is the solution. In any case, I'd be reluctant to take a drill bit to a carbon rim.

    Bert
    If you're confident the hop is purely because the valve isn't seating, or the construction of the tire, disregard my post. However if the tire width varies on one side of the valve or the other, then it may be unevenly seated. A change it tire width is the giveaway. If it is the tire, do whatever it takes to solve the problem. Then you need to decide if this is an isolated defect, or common to these tires, in which case you maybe should switch.

    I wouldn't drill a carbon rim either, even though modern rims hold valves so rigidly they mask what would otherwise be a giveaway of creep or bad seating.
    FB
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    WARNING, I'm from New York. Thin skinned people should maintain safe distance.

  13. #13
    Senior Member bsektzer's Avatar
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    FB,

    Again thanks! I do tend to believe it's the construction of the tire since I see the same issue on both the front and rear rims. None the less, I will definitely check the tire width as suggested, just to be sure. Can't be too careful.

    Bert

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    Pro teams use a piece of electrical tape over the valve hole to secure it to the rim.
    Mes compaingnons cui j'amoie et cui j'aim,... Me di, chanson.

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    Quote Originally Posted by operator View Post
    Pro teams use a piece of electrical tape over the valve hole to secure it to the rim.
    How do you hold a hole?????
    FB
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    WARNING, I'm from New York. Thin skinned people should maintain safe distance.

  16. #16
    Old fart JohnDThompson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FBinNY View Post
    How do you hold a hole?????
    http://youtu.be/jNFum0P5pP0

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    Thanks, I needed that.

    BTW do they still sell donut holes? or do they call them something else these days?

    Years ago there was a company that made bar stools next door to me. They were great recyclers, for raw material for the base they contracted with local kitchen cabinet makers and bought all the sink holes.
    Last edited by FBinNY; 01-31-12 at 09:16 AM.
    FB
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    An ounce of diagnosis is worth a pound of cure.

    “Never argue with an idiot. He will only bring you down to his level and beat you with experience.”, George Carlin

    “One accurate measurement is worth a thousand expert opinions” - Adm Grace Murray Hopper - USN

    WARNING, I'm from New York. Thin skinned people should maintain safe distance.

  18. #18
    Senior Member bsektzer's Avatar
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    Holes aside, I did check the tire width all around both wheels. It varied between 21.5 to 22.8mm with no particular relationship to the position of the valve stem. So I think that pretty well rules out tire creep. I'm pretty sure the ticking nonsense resulted from a combination of a small 'hump' on the inside surface of the tire due to the way Vittoria builds their tubes (the stem threads onto a brass fitting built into the tube itself) and a little extra clearance in the rim's valve hole.

  19. #19
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    Vittoria are like the Sidi of the tubulars hehehe

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    Quote Originally Posted by ultraman6970 View Post
    Vittoria are like the Sidi of the tubulars hehehe
    that good!?. I wasn't aware. BTW- I love my Sidi shoes. ( don't ride vittoria tires)
    FB
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    WARNING, I'm from New York. Thin skinned people should maintain safe distance.

  21. #21
    Senior Member bsektzer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FBinNY View Post
    that good!?. I wasn't aware. BTW- I love my Sidi shoes. ( don't ride vittoria tires)
    Let me put it this way. On the same stretch of road in similar conditions, and at the same power output (220W +/- 10), my old Tufo HiComposite tires ran at ~19.5 mph, on the Vittorias, it's ~22.8 mph.

    Shoes? My taste goes to Specialized S-works

  22. #22
    Senior Member bsektzer's Avatar
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    I think I've found the perfect permanent solution to this little annoyance. I just recently bought some Vredestein latex inner tubes (yeah, I know... a long story, but I digress), and they come with a 43 mm long plastic sleeve with a 0.22 mm wall thickness that fits very snugly over then valve stem. Why, I don't know, but these sleeves fit the Vittoria valve stems perfectly and take up any and all 'slack' between the tubular's valve stem and the valve hole in the rim.

    I just had the chance to test this out today, and it works perfectly. Since I only need to use about half an inch of these sleeves from the Vredesteins, the 3 that I've got, they should hold me for a while.

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