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Old 02-10-14, 04:16 AM   #1
pedromj
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Folding Tires and Blowouts

Hi all,

Last month I upgraded my tires to new Vittoria Rubino Pro, which are folding tires. My previous tires was cheap entry-level clincher tires with steel rings.

Yesterday I had a blowout in my rear wheel while I was riding after noticing a more and more weird feeling in my rear wheel. I have been recalling the moment before I noticed such feeling and the only strange event I remember is that just before it I had passed on a bump in a corner at high speed and it ended in a very strong lateral movement.

My theory is that it moved the tire and the inner tuve found a way out so it exploded. The good point (for safety) is that it did not explode until I stopped the bicycle. The bad point is that such thing has never happened to me and I think it should not normally happen. I believe it should not be normal and it never happened to me with my previous (cheap) tires in similar situations.

I am wondering if I had put too much pressure to the tire (9 bar / 130 psi) and the rim could not hold it or that folding tires are less strong to lateral movements. Please, let me know whether you have experienced something similar and, if possible, how can I prevent it to happen. Thank you very much.

Regards,
Pedro
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Old 02-10-14, 05:26 AM   #2
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Pedro, I would blame over inflation for the blow out. I haven't had any problems like yours when using folding tires.

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Old 02-10-14, 05:43 AM   #3
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It was the first thing I thought so I have inflated the new tube to 8 bar / 116 psi. However, the tires support much more pressure and less than 9 bar / 130 psi is a bit low for my weight (one of the reasons to change the tires). For now I will use 8 bar / 116 psi, as it is the pressure I had used with the old tires. However, I want to hear your opinions or experiences to confirm that folding tires have the same "lateral movement" strength than steel-ringed clincher tires. Thanks for your replies.
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Old 02-10-14, 08:28 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by pedromj View Post
It was the first thing I thought so I have inflated the new tube to 8 bar / 116 psi. However, the tires support much more pressure and less than 9 bar / 130 psi is a bit low for my weight (one of the reasons to change the tires)
Somewhat off the track of your original information request, can I ask if you had considered wider tires and lower pressure? The reason for my question is recent tire performance and comfort threads tend to point to 110 psi on 23 mm tires as being more-or-less nominal and less than 100 psi for 25 mm tires, with better performance. Hope this isn't going too sideways for this thread.
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Old 02-10-14, 08:45 AM   #5
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What size tire and rim where you using?
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Old 02-10-14, 08:57 AM   #6
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What size tire and rim where you using?
I'm sorry, I forgot to specify it. My rims are 650c and my tires are 650x23c.
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Old 02-10-14, 09:01 AM   #7
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Somewhat off the track of your original information request, can I ask if you had considered wider tires and lower pressure? The reason for my question is recent tire performance and comfort threads tend to point to 110 psi on 23 mm tires as being more-or-less nominal and less than 100 psi for 25 mm tires, with better performance. Hope this isn't going too sideways for this thread.
I would consider it if I had 700c rims, which are much more easy to find in different qualities/prices, and enough clearance. I have mudguards and there is no room for wider tires than 23 mm.
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Old 02-10-14, 09:01 AM   #8
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Does that exceed tire/rim recommendations ? At 235lbs, I run 55-60 psi with 700x35 tires. Bigger tires are a lot more comfortable with better grip. Are you racing?
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Old 02-10-14, 09:07 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by pedromj View Post
I'm sorry, I forgot to specify it. My rims are 650c and my tires are 650x23c.
Are you a small rider or running 650c for the "aero" benefits? How much do you weigh? 130psi is A LOT of pressure in any tire. The need for this high a pressure usually means the tire is undersized (as mentioned by RoadTire) or the rider is riding heavy in the seat. By this I don't mean that the rider weighs a lot, more the rider isn't unweighting the seat over bumps (often combined with a slow cadence).

Last item not yet mentioned is the possibility that the tube was trapped under the tire bead so the tire was never fully seated in one spot. Folding tires can be a bit more challenging for some to mount. Andy.
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Old 02-10-14, 09:08 AM   #10
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Does that exceed tire/rim recommendations ? At 235lbs, I run 55-60 psi with 700x35 tires. Bigger tires are a lot more comfortable with better grip. Are you racing?
Good luck finding 650c tires in anything other then 23 or 25 widths in anywhere. Andy.
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Old 02-10-14, 09:30 AM   #11
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Does that exceed tire/rim recommendations ? At 235lbs, I run 55-60 psi with 700x35 tires. Bigger tires are a lot more comfortable with better grip. Are you racing?
I am not sure if the rims tolerate 9 bar / 130 psi, but they tolerate 8 bar / 116 psi very well.

I'm not racing but I am too much accustomed to thin tires. When I was a teen I used to ride a road bike with 700x18c and I loved, and still love, the sharp-tire feeling. They may be less comfortable, but I like to feel the road (old habits). However I am open to test bigger tires and I wanted to try some 28 mm to get more grip but my current bicycle does not support bigger tires than 23 mm with mudguards and 25 mm without mudguards.
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Old 02-10-14, 09:44 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by Andrew R Stewart View Post
Are you a small rider or running 650c for the "aero" benefits? How much do you weigh? 130psi is A LOT of pressure in any tire. The need for this high a pressure usually means the tire is undersized (as mentioned by RoadTire) or the rider is riding heavy in the seat. By this I don't mean that the rider weighs a lot, more the rider isn't unweighting the seat over bumps (often combined with a slow cadence).

Last item not yet mentioned is the possibility that the tube was trapped under the tire bead so the tire was never fully seated in one spot. Folding tires can be a bit more challenging for some to mount. Andy.
I am very small (I need a 48cm frame) and the brand I purchased mounts 650c to bicycles under 54 cm. I always preferred 700c, but I am re-entering cycling and decided to start with an entry-level bicycle with plans to upgrade to a proper 700c bicycle that may support from 23 to 28 mm tires.

I decided to use 9 bar / 130 psi by recommendation from Vittoria for 95 kg / 210 lbs, that is my weight plus the weight of the bicycle and the weight of the bag I carry to work.

About the tire/tube mounting, I am pretty sure that the tire was mounted well because I mount the inner tube after inflating it, getting out some air to insert the last tire piece. Then I check that tire flanks do not pinch the inner tube by squeezing them and looking inside the rim to be sure that the inner tube is correctly placed.
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Old 02-10-14, 09:45 AM   #13
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Pedro, To your lateral movement question, I've used folding tires on my crit bike where very hard braking and turning is quite common. The only problem with the tires was my sometimes unrealistic traction expectation.

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Old 02-10-14, 10:16 AM   #14
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Variation, perhaps slight, from ETRO standards for T/R match?

were the tires tight, difficult to fit? or relatively easy to mount?

Or typical mounting error..
did you insure none of the inner-tube was beneath the tire bead , but, instead between them , only..

Last edited by fietsbob; 02-10-14 at 10:20 AM.
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Old 02-10-14, 11:06 AM   #15
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Or typical mounting error..
did you insure none of the inner-tube was beneath the tire bead , but, instead between them , only..
That would be my bet. It's certainly an easy mistake to make.
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Old 02-10-14, 11:21 AM   #16
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+2 to mounting error with tube not all the way inside the bead of the tire.....even if it's not obvious at first, it becomes obvious with the explosion.
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Old 02-10-14, 11:27 AM   #17
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Variation, perhaps slight, from ETRO standards for T/R match?

were the tires tight, difficult to fit? or relatively easy to mount?

Or typical mounting error..
did you insure none of the inner-tube was beneath the tire bead , but, instead between them , only..
They are more or less difficult to mount, I even have to use the (plastic) tire lever to fit them. I am pretty sure they were (and are) well mounted because I inflate the inner tubes before fitting them into the tire and I rode more than 100 miles with them (including some similar "bumps") without a problem. Maybe I failed by putting more pressure than the rims supports, but I want to be sure that the folding tires do not tend to come off with "lateral forces".
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Old 02-10-14, 11:47 AM   #18
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It was the first thing I thought so I have inflated the new tube to 8 bar / 116 psi. However, the tires support much more pressure and less than 9 bar / 130 psi is a bit low for my weight (one of the reasons to change the tires). For now I will use 8 bar / 116 psi, as it is the pressure I had used with the old tires. However, I want to hear your opinions or experiences to confirm that folding tires have the same "lateral movement" strength than steel-ringed clincher tires. Thanks for your replies.
my opinion and experiences over 40 years and over 10's of thousands of miles have been that folding tires are no more or less prone to problems involving "lateral movement" than wired beaded tires. they weight less on average, cost more, on average, and take up less space than average when folded.

BTW i've seen two 650cx28mm tires. one from Terry and one from Serfas (exclusive seller). i'm using them on one of my bikes now and they've been a godsend. here's a pic:

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Old 02-10-14, 12:01 PM   #19
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Good confirmation about folding tires behaving the same as wired tires. Thank you.

Those 650x28 look very nice. I would test them for some touring ride if I did not have so little clearance with the mudguards, I can barely fit the 23 mm tire with the mudguards (SKS Chromoplastc). If I am not very cautious adjusting the mudguards from time to time, the 23 mm tires end up rubbing the mudguards.
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Old 02-10-14, 12:17 PM   #20
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The tube pinched in the bead is the most likely explanation - especially since you have to use levers to get the tire on all the way.

Once in a while, a tire/rim combo is a little too loose and you can have a blowout - but you likely wouldn't have had such a tight install if that were the case.

Folding beads are generally a little tighter anyway, but not more likely to blowout with a good install.
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Old 02-10-14, 12:35 PM   #21
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I do not believe 130 psi could have blown the tire off the rim unless the bead was damaged. I think a small part of the tube was caught between the tire bead and the bottom of the rim. This is a common problem that has happened to me several times. As you know, adding some air to the tube before mounting helps but does not totally eliminate the problem.
Nothing wrong with folding tires or 650 rims other than availability.
I think that 116 - 120 psi should be enough pressure.
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Old 02-10-14, 12:40 PM   #22
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I will be more careful next time but, as I said, I am pretty sure that I mounted them well. However, I will also stay with 8 bar / 116 psi to be sure that the pressure does not exceed the maximum supported by the rim.
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Old 02-10-14, 01:05 PM   #23
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i have recently taken to the practice of visually inspecting each bead after mounting but before inflating, by pushing it to the side with my thumbs and insuring the i can't see ANY TUBE AT ALL, before inflating. if any part of the tube, is even slightly showing under the tire bead (it can sometimes be hard to see in as much as they are commonly both black) , experience has shown me that it will just be waiting for the opportunity to escape the confines of the tire casing at the first opportune moment and explode before you can say boo. the narrower the tire the more likely the chance. the higher the pressure the smaller the opportunity needs to be. IMHO.

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Old 02-10-14, 01:15 PM   #24
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I do the same but after inflating the tube a bit, so it is easier to fit into its place. I am very careful checking that the tire does not pinch any single bit of the tire but, if more pressure prevents the tube from coming out, I might have failed with that one.
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Old 02-10-14, 02:09 PM   #25
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Another vote for an improperly seated tire when initially installed. I've been using Vittoria Rubino Pro and Rubino Pro Slick tires in 700x23 for several years and 10's of thousands of miles. I inflate them to 120 psi (8 bar) routinely and have never had one come off spontaneously.

I really like these tires. They ride and handle well, suffer very few flats, their weight is reasonable (~220 grams) and they are very durable as I typically get about over 4000 miles (6500 km) on a rear tire. They are also pretty reasonably priced if you get them from on of the UK suppliers.
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