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Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

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Old 05-15-08, 01:46 PM   #1
cohophysh
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road bike pumps

So any of you use CO2 for your pump? How well does it work? Any issues I should know about? I am thinking about purchasing one instead of a frame pump.
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Old 05-15-08, 02:41 PM   #2
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I used them for about a year but got tired of them. I have Many friends that preach against the Fred-like frame pumps. Just about every one of them has borrowed my frame pump for deifferent reasons.

Some run out of cartridges on a bad day while riding centuries. Some need it to make the repair. Some ahd dud cartridges. Some had the wrong type of cartridge. Some flatted a second time after not removing the culprit. I had a sidewall blowout once. I had to make the repair then work the tire just enough to get back safely without the boot coming out the side. I I had CO2, I would have been in trouble and maybe still out there walking. I got tired of mine and now I'm tired of theirs!

Strangest thing that ever happened to me and why I changed. We were on our tandem riding on a day over 100 degrees. It was very hot when we flatted. I pulled out the CO2, made the change but the stem froze with the cold gas and SNAPPED off!......Must have been the hot glass into the freezer theory! After that I changed, too many limiting factors with CO2.

Plus if a friend is in need, you can help him out. I fyou have CO2, you can't play the hero!. I have many frineds that owe me!
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Old 05-15-08, 02:53 PM   #3
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Mr. Beanz pretty much nailed it. Look at it this way. You need a CO2 cartridge for every flat you need to repair (sometimes two if you mess up the inflation). Sometimes that's one every couple of months. Sometimes that's three on a single ride (yes, it's happened). Or you need one pump, forever.
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Old 05-15-08, 02:56 PM   #4
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I have a small frame pump which mounts right next to the bottle holder. Works great. Co2 cartridges are not needed as modern frame pumps are very efficient.
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Old 05-15-08, 02:57 PM   #5
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Get a frame pump. The CO2's don't seem to be reliable.
I have seen the CO2's fail a couple of times. The frame pumps are faithful.
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Old 05-15-08, 03:15 PM   #6
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Mr. Beanz pretty much nailed it. Look at it this way. You need a CO2 cartridge for every flat you need to repair (sometimes two if you mess up the inflation). Sometimes that's one every couple of months. Sometimes that's three on a single ride (yes, it's happened). Or you need one pump, forever.

Thanks! Another point is that you should inflate the tire a bit before inflating to proper inflation to make sure the bead is seated. If for some reason the bead isn't, or the tube is pinched, you must deflate then do it all again. That takes AIR!

It got to the point where I started carrying a small pump for initial pump to ensure the bead situation. So then I started thinking why not justcarry a pump?
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Old 05-15-08, 03:30 PM   #7
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Can't shove a CO2 cartridge in somebody's spokes. Frame pump, FTW!


Seriously, though... For all the reasons everyone else listed, a frame pump or mini pump beats the CO2 inflators every time. Topeak Road Morph, in particular.
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Old 05-15-08, 03:42 PM   #8
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I've also had CO2 cartrige-units malfunction, and spill all of the gas in the cartridge the first time that you screw a new cartridge into the unit. When that happens, there is no way to stop the flow of CO2 before the cartridge is empty (3-5 seconds?). It sucks. There you are on the side of the road with a flat tire and an empty cartridge.

Also, what do you do if you have multiple flat tires on the same ride? You either carry 3-4 cartriges, or you walk, or you call for help. I don't like that scenario either.

I really like the Topeak Roadmorph frame pump. It has a built-in pressure gage, flexible rubber hose that runs between the pump and the tire (prevents damage to the valve stem - keeps stem still, instead of moving back and forth against the rim as you pump), and has a little fold-out piece that you put your foot on, to hold it to the ground while you pump. The design allows you to put a little bit of your weight into pumping up the tire. I can easily pump my tires over 120 psi with my roadmorph.

I've had lots of guys that have CO2 use my pump as well. It is worth the extra weight.
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Old 05-15-08, 03:43 PM   #9
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Look for frame Pump with a guage. Or Learn how many pumps to make to fill up your size of tire.
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Old 05-15-08, 03:59 PM   #10
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I like the functionality of an old school frame pump. I don't really need a gauge. You get the feel of what 100-120 PSI feels like after filling the tires a million times

I likes my purty pump!

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Old 05-15-08, 04:08 PM   #11
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Another thing to keep in mind is that we are Clydes! I have a friend that weighs 140, has never had a flat in the 6,000 miles we rode together while I had quite a few. If you were a flywieght, maybe the CO2 would make more sense. My wife has a few more than the friend but is a bit heavier, then I have the most at the highest weight of us 3 (245'ish).
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Old 05-15-08, 08:17 PM   #12
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Weasel Tactic:
Carry the lightweght CO2 in your seatbag, but recommend frame pumps for all your riding buddies.

The first time they have a flat, show them how quick your CO2 is...
The third time you have a flat, they can show you how reliable their pump is.
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Old 05-15-08, 09:00 PM   #13
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The first time they have a flat, show them how quick your CO2 is...
The third time you have a flat, they can show you how reliable their pump is.

Why do I have this feeling we've ridden together!
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Old 05-15-08, 09:02 PM   #14
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I use CO2, never had any issues, but am always nervous about giving people my cartridges. I have and I figure that the good karma will cover me through my ride and I wont flat. I keep looking at the frame pump though. Luckily, I have only flatted twice in the last 12 months.
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Old 05-16-08, 03:07 AM   #15
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+1 Road Morph

When i first started riding, it was the only pump I owned. It's always fun -- in a smug kinda way -- when this clyde on a fixie pulls over to help a weight weenie who's out of CO2.
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Old 05-16-08, 03:24 AM   #16
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I luv frame pumps!!!!!!
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Old 05-16-08, 05:47 AM   #17
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Ever since a CO2 unit failed me on the last day of a 5-day tour, the frame pump is my friend.
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Old 05-16-08, 06:34 AM   #18
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I carry the co2 as well as the Topeak Roadmorph. I have a mount on both of my bikes where I can take the pump off one bike and put it on the other.
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Old 05-16-08, 06:52 PM   #19
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I carry the co2 as well as the Topeak Roadmorph. I have a mount on both of my bikes where I can take the pump off one bike and put it on the other.
I've been thinking of the same thing since I already have the CO2.
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Old 05-17-08, 06:28 AM   #20
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Topeak Roadmorph for the win. Fills up my tires to 130 quickly, flexible hose so you don't snap it off when your hands slip, plus gauge.

To date I have never seen a CO2 cartridge work when and how it was supposed to.
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Old 05-17-08, 09:33 AM   #21
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I carry CO2 for quick fillups, and a minipump as a backup. I've never had an issue with the CO2, but the first time it didn't work would suck without a pump.
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Old 05-17-08, 09:36 AM   #22
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Thanks for the great feedback, think I will check out the road morph
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Old 05-17-08, 11:58 AM   #23
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I got a Road Morph. I haven't used it on my balloon tires, but this morning on the ride, some people borrowed it for their mountain bike tires, and it seemed to work fine.

One thing I thought was odd was that it didn't have any instructions. Like how to switch from Presta to Schrader- I'd read that somewhere, and knew how to, but the pump packaging didn't say that anywhere.
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Old 05-17-08, 06:04 PM   #24
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Road pumps

After 7 years of riding with the CO jobs, I converted (can we get an Amen from the congregation?)to the topeak road morph.
I installed a setup that straps the pump onto the handlebar bag but may have to figure out something else for the CF motobecane.
I like the flexible hose, the (albeit small) foot pad, and the fact that the pump WILL get the tire up to 100psi without taking an afternoon of pumping. It's also easier on the presta valve stems.
What I like about the pump (over the CO)is the fact that if you run into a series of flats (club rides)you have an easy source of air to get everyone back on the road again and it doesn't weigh much more than the CO setup with a spare cartridge.
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Old 05-17-08, 06:28 PM   #25
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I carry the co2 as well as the Topeak Roadmorph. I have a mount on both of my bikes where I can take the pump off one bike and put it on the other.
I carry both as well. The CO2 was a blessing after 10 hours in the mine and 1 hour of that running a shovel.
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