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Thread: Repairing Flats

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    Repairing Flats

    Question......

    is self adhesive patches inferior to glue patches? Riding in the rain today and got some flats and used self adhesive patches and they didnt stay on.

    Thoughts?

    http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...t-a-ride-today!!!

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    Starting over CraigB's Avatar
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    I've heard a similar complaint from other folks. I can't say from personal experience, as I have some, but have never used them. OTOH I have used the glue-on kind, and as long as the tube of glue didn't dry out, they never failed me.
    Craig in Indy

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    thanks craig!

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    Senior Member zandoval's Avatar
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    I have tried three different brands and all have failed at high pressure on road bike tiers - Vulcanized patches are the rule - And - Applying vulcanizing cement to both the patch and tube then letting them completely dry before applying helps too...

    Also - When the self adhesive patches do hold they only wait for the temp to get hot then they melt off...

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    Senior Member green427's Avatar
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    I have been using the traditional rubber cement/vulcanized patches until recently; my daughter's MTB sprung a leak, and I used one of those self-sticking plastic patches. They move around a bit; I am not comfortable with the fix, but it now has been a week and the tire hasn't lost pressure. Will find out soon.

    I always carry a new tube with me; the old one will get patched and will be used as a backup.

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    Quote Originally Posted by green427 View Post
    I always carry a new tube with me; the old one will get patched and will be used as a backup.
    +1 Yes, the self adhesive ones don't hold for me in the rain either, that's why I've switched to gluing patches at home where its not raining.
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    Quote Originally Posted by zandoval View Post
    Also - When the self adhesive patches do hold they only wait for the temp to get hot then they melt off...
    If you let the patches get too hot, the glue becomes completely useless. I found this out, the hard way, after I left my bike+patches sitting in the back of the car for a bit too long one day. I've switched back to glue-on patches; they're almost as quick and they' haven't failed me yet...

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    Senior Member Mithrandir's Avatar
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    Anyone have a good pack of glued patches to recommend? I've got a growing pile of punctured tubes sitting on my workbench and I'm getting sick of buying new ones... heh.

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    i did switch to a new tube but that one got punctured too..... twice. So I was **** up a river.

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    Senior Member Mithrandir's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chefisaac View Post
    i did switch to a new tube but that one got punctured too..... twice. So I was **** up a river.
    When switching tubes after a puncture, make sure you leave the tire in the same position on the rim, and look at where the puncture is on the tube. Once you do that, feel inside the tire in that same general area to see if there's anything still sticking through the tire. Remove it.

    Then do a once-over, feeling the entire inside of the tire to see if there's anything else sticking through as well. Can't be too careful.

    On my first flat I did not do this, and the metal staple sticking through the tire belt promptly punctured my only spare. The walk home made it clear that I was to never make that mistake again.

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    mith: I kjow what you mean by leanring from your mistakes. We couldnt get the tire preasure up with the hand pump so I walked 4 blocks with my road cycling shoes (which hurt like hell after too much walking) and I went to a gas station. Paid the $.50 for air just to notice the fit on the air hose was different (and yes I do have the adapter). Went acorss the street and the air was a $1 and the rest of the money was back at the bikes 4 blocks away. GRRRRRRR. Longest 17 miles I ever did!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mithrandir View Post
    Anyone have a good pack of glued patches to recommend? I've got a growing pile of punctured tubes sitting on my workbench and I'm getting sick of buying new ones... heh.
    Rema Tip-Top are tip top, but there's nothing wrong with the kit sold by park.

    The only real trick to patching tires is to be careful, methodical, and let the vulcanizing fluid dry. (you can't wait too long for it dry, if you can keep it clean). There's no need to apply vulcanizing fluid to the patch, and good reasons not to[1]. Follow the instructions in the kit. Find the hole, mark it, sand the area of the patch plus a bit. Apply vulcanizing fluid in a thin layer, allow to dry. Apply the patch, rub it on hard. Reinstall.

    The other thing I add to my flat kit (spare tube, patch kit, tire levers, pump) is a couple cotton balls. They're light, they don't take up any room, and they're amazingly useful for finding things stuck inside a tire (like a little wire from a radial car tire that are a ***** to find.) On the side of the road, lacking one, a teased apart cigarette filter works almost as well.

    I also make sure to mount the tires the same orientation each time (label at the spoke hole, on the drive side, unless it's a directional mud tire.) That way, you can look at where the hole on the tube is, and have two places to check. (I fail miserably at keeping the tube in the same orientation it was in the tire, so if the hole is nine inches from the valve stem, I need to look at the tire on both sides of the label, about nine inches.)


    [1] having to do with the chemistry of the system. patches aren't just pieces of rubber. They're a multi layer structure, with the tube facing layer consisting of unvulcanized rubber that's been treated with vulcanizing accelerators. The vulcanizing fluid contains activators for them, so putting vulcanizing fluid on the patch risks setting them off to early, giving a less-than-ideal bond.

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    Quote Originally Posted by chefisaac View Post
    mith: I kjow what you mean by leanring from your mistakes. We couldnt get the tire preasure up with the hand pump so I walked 4 blocks with my road cycling shoes (which hurt like hell after too much walking) and I went to a gas station. Paid the $.50 for air just to notice the fit on the air hose was different (and yes I do have the adapter). Went acorss the street and the air was a $1 and the rest of the money was back at the bikes 4 blocks away. GRRRRRRR. Longest 17 miles I ever did!

    hmm i could start a co2 vs pump war but I won't i use the patches with the vulcanizing fluid. they are the only ones shops around here sell. i also try to avoid patching on the road and just go with a new tube but alas, sometimes you hvae unlucky days!

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    I've used the cheap forte kit from performance and never had an issue with them yet (4 or 5 patches used). Doesn't take that much longer than a self stick kit and certainly have a better track record from what I have seen. For what it's worth I carry a spare tube but have never needed it. I haven't been riding that long but with all the flats I've had so far I have been able to patch them on the road and it doesn't really take too much longer than than swapping the tube. The last patch I actually had to put over another patch as a piece of metal made a hole right next to an old patch. It's been over a week and it's still holding just fine.

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    Senior Member zandoval's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dscheidt View Post
    ...vulcanizing fluid contains activators for them, so putting vulcanizing fluid on the patch risks setting them off to early, giving a less-than-ideal bond.
    Noted - I originally did this because my patches seamed a little on the dry side and putting the vulcanizing fluid on them got them pliable again - Best bet is to use fresh vulcanized patch kits...
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    cottons balls are a wonderful idea!

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