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Old 05-24-12, 02:30 PM   #1
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Best tube patch cement for the money

Hi. I have lived in a very populous lower income city for almost 20 years, and find myself fixing a lot of the kids bikes, both of which is fine, but i go thru a lot of patches. I buy 48 patches thru Ebay for about 1.60 including S+H, and they overall work well, but want to know what the best cement for the money is.

I have done research, and see (all prices include S+H),

1. Monkey Grip 32 fl oz Rubber / Tire Universal Cement for US $20.00

2. Slime 1050 Slime 1050 Rubber Cement - 8 oz. for 12.00

3. Camel Tire 12086 Universal Cement 8 oz. for 16.65

4. Rema Tip Top SPECIAL CEMENT BL No. BL-8 8 oz for 21.00

(I also see "SUNLITE" Patch Cement 1.00 per 1.oz tube, but you have to buy $15.00 worth.)

The 32.oz is more than foresee needing (though i have put over 15 patches on more than one 20" tube, with roofing rubber inside the tire, as that is cheaper than a new tube), but that is almost the same price as 8.oz of other brands.

But which one of these would allow me to effectively use old tubes as patches? And how good is slime cement (this is not the sealant)? Rema also has a Universal Cement that is a dollar cheaper than the blue, but the latter is supposed to provide the best weld it seems.

I pray there are some experts on this as summer is coming!
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Old 05-24-12, 02:46 PM   #2
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No idea myself. I buy patch kits for a couple of dollars each whenever needed. It is important to know that the "glue" that comes with patch kits is not really glue or rubber cement. You need to use the proper stuff meant for patching tubes.

My favorite is the Rema Tip-top kit. By coincidence, this thread was sitting right next to your own topic in the forum, perhaps some suggestions can be found there:
http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread.php/819953-found-a-good-source-for-patch-glue-rubber-cement


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Old 05-24-12, 03:30 PM   #3
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No idea myself. I buy patch kits for a couple of dollars each whenever needed. It is important to know that the "glue" that comes with patch kits is not really glue or rubber cement. You need to use the proper stuff meant for patching tubes.

My favorite is the Rema Tip-top kit. By coincidence, this thread was sitting right next to your own topic in the forum, perhaps some suggestions can be found there:
http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread.php/819953-found-a-good-source-for-patch-glue-rubber-cement


Yes, we have sometimes got them, but the amount of patches and adhesive is very small, and i think the price went up around here. Thus i buy the 48 patches on ebay for about a nickel a piece, and i can buy them with the adhesive for 3.00, but again the amount of the latter is minimal, and while you nee not use much, i want to just buy the cheap patches, or vulcanizing fluid that would allow even old inner tube pieces.

It seems like the Rema Special Cement BL or Special Blue would be best.
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Old 05-24-12, 04:56 PM   #4
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I bought a large batch of Rema patches from Niagara Cycle, and I buy Elmer's rubber cement at Walgreens. I don't feel that I need the name brand glue, but I do prefer Rema patches over all others.
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Old 05-24-12, 06:29 PM   #5
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Jesus, not this again...
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Old 05-25-12, 06:45 AM   #6
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I bought a large batch of Rema patches from Niagara Cycle, and I buy Elmer's rubber cement at Walgreens. I don't feel that I need the name brand glue, but I do prefer Rema patches over all others.
So my focus should also be on glue. The patch kits of Monkey grip for 0.69 plus 4.99 S+H sounds good, but i wonder how Slime stacks up (8 oz. for 12.00) compared with the other cements, as with the 48 patches for 1.56 then that might be a good combo.
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Old 05-25-12, 09:19 AM   #7
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I did an experiment a while ago. I took a tube and applied two patches, one with official tire patching cement and the other with staitionary store rubber cement. They both held air fine. Then I removed the tube and tried pulling off the patches. The stationary store rubber cement patch pulled off the tube cleanly. The one with the tire patching cement took the underlying tube with it. So, while both may work, the weren't equivalent in that test. I hypothesized that the stationary store cement has some type of thickeners/fillers (to make it work for paper) that the patching cement doesn't and that these comprise the bond.
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Old 05-25-12, 01:54 PM   #8
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I did an experiment a while ago. I took a tube and applied two patches, one with official tire patching cement and the other with staitionary store rubber cement. They both held air fine. Then I removed the tube and tried pulling off the patches. The stationary store rubber cement patch pulled off the tube cleanly. The one with the tire patching cement took the underlying tube with it. So, while both may work, the weren't equivalent in that test. I hypothesized that the stationary store cement has some type of thickeners/fillers (to make it work for paper) that the patching cement doesn't and that these comprise the bond.
Actually, as i understand it, the patch and cement are chemically formulated to effect vulcanization. Thus you wait for the cement to dry and remove the foil from the patch when ready to apply it.
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Old 08-16-16, 12:38 PM   #9
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Update on patch cement

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Originally Posted by PeaceByJesus View Post
Hi. I have lived in a very populous lower income city for almost 20 years, and find myself fixing a lot of the kids bikes, both of which is fine, but i go thru a lot of patches. I buy 48 patches thru Ebay for about 1.60 including S+H, and they overall work well, but want to know what the best cement for the money is.

I have done research, and see (all prices include S+H),

1. Monkey Grip 32 fl oz Rubber / Tire Universal Cement for US $20.00

2. Slime 1050 Slime 1050 Rubber Cement - 8 oz. for 12.00

3. Camel Tire 12086 Universal Cement 8 oz. for 16.65

4. Rema Tip Top SPECIAL CEMENT BL No. BL-8 8 oz for 21.00

(I also see "SUNLITE" Patch Cement 1.00 per 1.oz tube, but you have to buy $15.00 worth.)

The 32.oz is more than foresee needing (though i have put over 15 patches on more than one 20" tube, with roofing rubber inside the tire, as that is cheaper than a new tube), but that is almost the same price as 8.oz of other brands.

But which one of these would allow me to effectively use old tubes as patches? And how good is slime cement (this is not the sealant)? Rema also has a Universal Cement that is a dollar cheaper than the blue, but the latter is supposed to provide the best weld it seems.

I pray there are some experts on this as summer is coming!
Thought that I should return to this thread and provide what i have found, having patched multitudes of tubes (mostly just 20'' bikes) for many summers (for free) in this populous (relatively) poor city. Which is that the cheap Chinese cements, such as Red Sun, work as well as Slime or Monkey Grip, IF you have good, pliable patches.

Needing over 100 patches each year, I found that some of the cheap (1.45-2.99) 48 patch kits at Ebay with cement (like here) used to have good patches, and very very rarely have any failed, thank God, but starting last year what I found is that they all, rectangular (33mm x 24mm=1.3'' x 0,945'')) or round (25mm), now use stiff patches that do not work well, particularly on certain newer 20'' tubes that feel rather plastic. In addition, the cellophane top is very hard to remove.

Therefore what I use is the large 50 x 32mm rubber patches, (lowest: 1.83 for 24) and cut them in half (except for large blow outs). These are very pliable, and adhere well, though the foil backing is too thin, and requires some care to remove.

Other than that, if you go thru a lot of patches and Rema is too costly, then the Monkey Grip EZ Fix Bicycle Patch Kit for 0.79 at Blain's Farm and Fleet is a good buy, if you purchase enough items to reduce the 8+ shipping charge (presently, 35yds of Gorilla tape at 6.99 would be a good buy). I went thru about a dozen of these kits last year in addition to the Chinese cheapos, and they work well.

For patching quickly, remove the tire from the rim, once side at a time, and remove the tube, making sure the tube is clean and dry, and if the puncture is not apparent, inflate the tube to a good degree of pressure, with the tube around your neck, feeling and listening for a leak. Once found, buff it well with a abrasive buffer (some people also use a solvent) and while still inflated (I recommend, if possible) smear enough cement to cover at least twice the size of the patch, quickly working the cement as it were into the tube.

Having the tube inflated to a good degree can enable you to buff it better, and smearing cement over the hole while under pressure can produce a small white "geyser" spot so that you can see where the hole is without using chalk, etc., and being inflated also enables the cement to dry quicker. Of course, if the hole is too large then you simply do the prep work with tube deflated.

Wait until the cement dries, approx. 2-4 minutes (depending on ambient temp and humidity and cement brand) and release the air from the tube. The patch is designed to stretch with the tube, and which must be deflated for patching.

Then remove any top cellophane cover on the patch (which does not stretch like the patch). This side will typically be the side that has a name or design on the patch. And then remove the backing over the patch side that adheres to the tube. This is chemically formulated to "vulcanize," welding as it were the patch to the tube, and thus you should not touch that surface.

Hold the patch by the corner and center it over the puncture, and then press it firmly and completely against the tube.

Some people recommend not inflating the tube for at least a few minutes, but while this may help I pump it up immediately till the patch stretches well, and to check for more leaks. A patch that does not pull away as thus tested will remain once you inflate the tube within the tire as there is also pressure against the patch.

Of course, with tubes that take extreme pressures then perhaps Rema patches should be used.

That said, the reason for the many flat tires I have seen is due to the preference for street tires, which have low tread if any, and often these tires are bald ("drfiting"), and run on streets with small sharp objects.

Hope this helps someone.
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Old 08-16-16, 01:30 PM   #10
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You have a lot of experience, which have you found to work well?

Any glue with "Best" in the description will have vulcanizing accelerators. Slime glue does not, according to their MSDS.
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Old 08-16-16, 05:44 PM   #11
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I have always relied on Rema for both patches and cement (except for my latex tubes of course).
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Old 08-16-16, 07:58 PM   #12
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You have a lot of experience, which have you found to work well?

Any glue with "Best" in the description will have vulcanizing accelerators. Slime glue does not, according to their MSDS.
I never used Rema, which seems to have the highest esteem, but as mostly said, I have found the cements I have used (Slime, Monkey Grip, and a couple other bulk cements) to be no better than the typical Chinese cements (Red Sun, etc.) that come with Ebay type 48 patch packages. They work well if you have good pliable patches that are designed to work with cement for tubes. Elmers did not work as well.

Thanks for the tip on Slime. No wonder it is so cheap.
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Old 08-16-16, 08:00 PM   #13
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I have always relied on Rema for both patches and cement (except for my latex tubes of course).
Which type/color?
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Old 08-16-16, 09:32 PM   #14
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rema you troll..
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Old 08-16-16, 10:15 PM   #15
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Is it possible to make patches out of pieces of old inner tube? If so this might be useful information in a pinch...
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Old 08-16-16, 10:39 PM   #16
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Thanks for this info and especially the HOW TO!
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Old 08-17-16, 06:54 AM   #17
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???

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Originally Posted by noglider View Post
I bought a large batch of Rema patches from Niagara Cycle, and I buy Elmer's rubber cement at Walgreens. I don't feel that I need the name brand glue, but I do prefer Rema patches over all others.
Just purchased some of that glue. I've had problems with the tube cement that comes with the patch kits drying out after opening. Does the rubber cement stay usable for you?
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Old 08-17-16, 07:43 AM   #18
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Peacebyjesus,

Great follow-up and great tips! Here's my take....

I buy the 100 count box of Rema patches (I think they are over-all the best in my opinion) but get the can of vulcanizing fluid from the auto parts store. I bought a can of the Rema fluid a couple of years ago and it began to set in the can a lot faster than the cheaper stuff at the parts store and I didn't notice much of a difference between the two. I lived in Arizona at the time so chemicals like that did evaporate faster anyway but the cheap stuff lasted months longer.

Looking at the make-up both brands contained the same chemicals.

One thing I was taught years ago by an older bike shop owner at the shop I worked at in high school was to inflate the tube when you put the patch on. Not too much but just enough to fill it. It was his feeling that when the tire was inflated to full pressure the tube would not stretch so much to de-laminate the patch. Not sure if this is actually correct but it has merit so that's what I do to this day. If you over-inflate a patched tube off the bike you definitely see that the patch does not stretch with the rubber. I also hit the tube with talc before I mount it in the tire. That's left over from my repairing sew-up days.

One thing that is also really important is to firmly roll the patch onto the tube when you apply it. I use a patch roller I've had for years. On the road I use a CO2 bottle or the bottom of my pump but you really need to press it hard into place.

Last edited by drlogik; 08-17-16 at 07:57 AM.
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Old 08-17-16, 08:17 AM   #19
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Just purchased some of that glue. I've had problems with the tube cement that comes with the patch kits drying out after opening. Does the rubber cement stay usable for you?
The key with patch kits is to make good use of that tube as soon as it's opened. Save up punctured tubes at home and patch 'em all at once. Then always take a virgin unopened tube with you on your bikes.
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Old 08-17-16, 08:21 AM   #20
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I'd be interested in the part of OP's question about whether pieces of used inner tube would work as patches -- assuming vulcanizing glue? I guess the inner tube piece would also have to be sanded? Maybe run a whole tube across a belt sander for a few minutes and then chop it up?
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Old 08-17-16, 08:59 AM   #21
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@okane, you quoted me from a few years ago. In the years since I wrote that, I've had some patches fail that were put on with Elmer's, so I retract my recommendation. If it's all you have, use it, because it works most of the time.

I found that I can buy a large can of vulcanizing fluid at an auto parts store. When I patch at home, I use that. When I patch on the road, I use a thin tube of glue that comes with patch kits. But as others have noted, once you open it, it can dry up, so it's time to buy another. At that point, it makes sense to use the glue in the tube if the tube is already open.

@dwmckee (hi, how are you?), I've tried making patches out of inner tube, but it didn't work. I'd love for someone to explain why.
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Old 08-17-16, 10:30 AM   #22
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Rema has an excellent reputation (deservedly so), but any glue that actually has vulcanizers should work well. You can slow down the drying-out by 1. closing the lid tightly, 2. putting the can in a ziplock bag (or better a glass jar with a tight lid), and 3. keeping it in a refrigerator.

As for using old tube rubber for patches, to have a chance at success you'll have to tear apart some of the covalent bonds for the vulcanizer to work. Use coarse sandpaper with sharp grit to really roughen both the patch and tube. Thinner patches are better. I don't know how well it could work -- I've always had success with even cheap no-name-o patches when used with good glue, which permanently bonded to the tube.

Good luck.
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Old 08-17-16, 12:09 PM   #23
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I've tried patching tubes with tubes. Used a very light MTB tube as a donor. Hit it with a belt sander to take it evenly down to a matte black surface. Used a core punch to cut nice round patches. Applied double coats of vulcanizing compound to both surfaces.
Results were so-so. They held air at MTB-type pressures, but were quite easy to peel off. Performance-wise, about level with Park Tools self-adhesive patches.
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Old 08-17-16, 12:14 PM   #24
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I no longer remove the clear plastic. Leaving it on appears to have no ill effects. Makes the patches easier to handle w/o touching the orange surface. Some time in the tire removes the plastic automatically.
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Old 08-17-16, 12:18 PM   #25
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Lots of flats? Who gets those? Got goatheads? Try tubeless. No flats with normal thorns and such. 2 flats in 6 years of commuting with tubes. 1 flat in 4 years of tubeless mt biking( 2 different bikes) The tech is now available for commuter width rims and tires in tubeless setups.
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