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  1. #1
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    2 flats < 3miles = discouraged newbie

    So, pinch flat on maiden voyage of new dawes lightning, last night, 2nd night out, less than 1 mile out, another flat, rear tire again, this time it was on in spoke side of tube. Running Kendra kwicksters, & had them @ 85psi, which is max rating. Needless to say I'm more than a little frustrated & discouraged. Second guessing buying cyclocross?? Ay help or suggestions really appreciated. 6'1 280lbs...

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    When you change a flat, make sure you run your finger along the inside of the tire. That way if a thorn of piece of glass is sticking through, you can find it and remove it so it doesn't quickly puncture the next tire.

    Also, make sure that you don't get the new tube pinched between the tire and rim when you install it, which will also quickly lead to a second puncture.

    And maybe you just had bad luck. You might go 1000 miles before your next flat.

  3. #3
    Commuter & cyclotourist brianogilvie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by happygilmore View Post
    ...another flat, rear tire again, this time it was on in spoke side of tube. Running Kendra kwicksters, & had them @ 85psi, which is max rating.
    Did your rim tape slip, or did a spoke somehow poke through it? I once had that kind of flat because the rim tape had slipped slightly sideways so that it was no longer fully covering the spoke hole on an offset-drilled rear rim. Otherwise, check for some foreign object that has gotten in.
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  4. #4
    The Left Coast, USA FrenchFit's Avatar
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    Considering that many of us ride 1000s of miles, seasons, without a flat..must have to realize that something's wrong. Figure it out, move on, don't get frustrated. Talk to a knowledgeable person at your LBS, they might diagnose your problem quickly.

  5. #5
    Senior Member 1242Vintage's Avatar
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    Once you get the problem sorted out with whatever is causing the flat (rim tape, spoke, thorn or wire imbedded in the tire, pinch flat, etc.) you might want to consider a set of Slime tubes, or DIY with sealant and tubes with removable cores. They weigh more than conventional tubes but will keep little thorns or those needle sharp wires from car tires from causing flats most of the time. The slime seals up most small punctures to keep you rolling. Beyond the weight penalty, the only other downside i found is if you do get a flat to big for the sealant to do its job, you won't be able to patch on the side of the road. The sealant that will be coming through the puncture and makes getting a good roadside patch job very difficult. I just carry a spare tube. Problem solved.

    I'm using my cross bike for my commute with Kendra Kross supremes tires and ride through lots debris on the shoulder. I'm having better luck with flats now that I'm using tubes with sealant. They will cost you about $8 each.

    Depending on the terrain you ride on, you might want to experiment a bit with tire pressure too. For commuting on pavement I keep those Kendra tires up around 60 psi. When I go off road i reduce it to smooth out some of the bumps. Just don't go to low as you'll risk a pinch flat. I'm 190 lbs and have done cross races on some very rugged terrain with tire pressure down as low as 35 psi with no problems.

    After you get this figured out you'll probably really enjoy that cross bike. Mine is sitting on the back deck right now and is calling me to take her out for some gravel fire road and single track fun. Commuting to work gets boring and she likes to get out on the weekend too!


    Good luck.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Bill Kapaun's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by brianogilvie View Post
    Did your rim tape slip...........? I once had that kind of flat because the rim tape had slipped slightly sideways so that it was no longer fully covering the spoke hole on an offset-drilled rear rim.........
    Had exactly that happen to me recently.
    I accidentally "scooted" the rim tape over with my tire lever.
    This was on a wheel I'd built and didn't have the proper width rim tape on it. (10mm and I needed 13)

  7. #7
    2 Fat 2 Furious contango's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by happygilmore View Post
    So, pinch flat on maiden voyage of new dawes lightning, last night, 2nd night out, less than 1 mile out, another flat, rear tire again, this time it was on in spoke side of tube. Running Kendra kwicksters, & had them @ 85psi, which is max rating. Needless to say I'm more than a little frustrated & discouraged. Second guessing buying cyclocross?? Ay help or suggestions really appreciated. 6'1 280lbs...
    Schwalbe Marathon Plus in 700x32 or 700x35, whatever your bike will take.

    They are a (female dog) to get on, even more of a (female dog) to get off again but once they are on the chances are you won't need to take them off again until they are worn out. Mine had 5000+ miles on them and still going strong before I swapped them for Durano Plus for a bit more speed.

    If you need a lot of grip in the mud look at the Plus Tour tyres, they have a more aggressive tread pattern.
    "For a list of ways technology has failed to improve quality of life, press three"

  8. #8
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    My first flat was my tire blowing up in the back seat of my car (next to my head, sounded like a gunshot) taking the bike home the day I got it...heh. It's not that hard to just set up the tire a bit off and pop! it's not normal that you get flats that easily, get it checked out and you'll be fine.

  9. #9
    Banned. Mr. Beanz's Avatar
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    Use good rim strip. Many less expensive bikes come with a cheap plastic rim strip. Make sure you get the surgical tape type. 5 bucks and well worth it. Plus good tires. Many newbs think good tires are too much but peace of mind is nice. Many stock tires suck! Just enough to get the bike off the showroom floor. Don't be afraid to look online for good tires and much better prices, some nearly half price of what the local shops ask.
    Last edited by Mr. Beanz; 08-03-13 at 07:08 PM.

  10. #10
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    Don't get frustrated. Just solve the issue(s). Plenty of us get thousands of miles betwee flats. However, I just had my first flat in quite a while on Wednesday. A recently mounted tire, that had been ridden a couple hundred km, went bang on a climb. Location of the split and how it happened suggested that I had somehow pinched the tube during installation. No great loss, as it was a previously patched tube.

    Don't worry, your cycle cross bike will be fine and isn't to be blamed for your flats. Can't speak about the first flat. But, there is a reasonable chance that some combo of moved rim strip, pinched tube on reinstall, etc. lead to the second.

    One thing I insist on is using quality tubes (Michelin, Vittoria, etc.) of the correct size for the tires they are installed in. No cheap, generic tubes, nor tubes stretched overly thin for me. That does wonders for minimizing my flats.

    A little bit of persistance and you'll have it sort.
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  11. #11
    Senior Member nkfrench's Avatar
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    In my area there is an abundance of goatshead thorns. Riding over vegetation or close to the edge of the road invites punctures.
    The phrase is usually "riding as far right as practicable", not "riding as far right as possible". YMMV.

  12. #12
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    Didn't have rimstrips on, brought the ride into LBS today, they gave me a tune up and a decent rimstrip, back in the saddle for take 3. Tomorrow, was just frustrated, and thinking too much of a "clydsdale" for the new ride. We'll be good to go...

  13. #13
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    These would help.

    Schwalbe Marathon $40
    Schwalbe Mondial $44 or $90 depending on the casing
    Fyxation Session $40

    Also, going with at least a 32c will help.
    Last edited by stevel610; 08-03-13 at 07:58 PM. Reason: added link
    Be watchful, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong. Let all that you do be done in love.

  14. #14
    Senior Member moochems's Avatar
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    I always use electrical tape (vinyl) to keep the rim tape in it's proper position. I use continental tour tubes which are slightly thicker than most tubes, but not like thorn-resistant tubes. I run schwalbe marathon plus tires.


    I ran over some funky stuff last night on the commute home: a large piece of steel that I didn't see, but sure felt, and a glass bottle that I heard explode under my front tire.

    Made it home no problem, sincerely doubt I have a flat in the gaage.

    Those items work well for me. A note on thorn-resistant tubes: though they be thick, and perhaps very resistant to flagging, all of them that I have used (six or so) have failed at the meeting if the valve stem and rubber. All of them were presto valves. I won't use another, but if I have a change of heart it will be only for schrader valved thorn resistant tubes. Perhaps that will be less probe to failure.

  15. #15
    Just Plain Slow PhotoJoe's Avatar
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    I carry cotton balls in my bag to run around the inside of the tire after any flat. The cotton will snag on anything still poking through.
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  16. #16
    Senior Member bbeck's Avatar
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    Hang in there I had an episode where i popped 2 tubes in a row trying to repair a flat. I ended up taking it to the LBS in a fluster. I handed it to him in disgust and said fix it! His trick was putting powder on the tube before he installed it. I have been doing this ever since.
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  17. #17
    Senior Member eja_ bottecchia's Avatar
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    Flats are a fact of life where I ride--goatheads are the main culprit. You learn to live with it. You have been given great advice here, follow-up on it and don't get discouraged.

    Ride safely!
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  18. #18
    Commuter & cyclotourist brianogilvie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by happygilmore View Post
    Didn't have rimstrips on, brought the ride into LBS today, they gave me a tune up and a decent rimstrip, back in the saddle for take 3. Tomorrow, was just frustrated, and thinking too much of a "clydsdale" for the new ride. We'll be good to go...
    No rim tape? That's a major fail on the part of whoever assembled the bike! (I hear there are rims that are designed to work without tape, but I've never seen such a thing myself.)
    Public accountability: my Beeminder weight loss graph.

  19. #19
    Ancient Clydesdale 2 wheeler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by happygilmore View Post
    Didn't have rimstrips on, brought the ride into LBS today, they gave me a tune up and a decent rimstrip, back in the saddle for take 3. Tomorrow, was just frustrated, and thinking too much of a "clydsdale" for the new ride. We'll be good to go...
    Well, it's good news that it was something simple. I'll bet that you'll do fine with rim strips installed, with the tires you've got (although everyone tried to promote their favorite tires, anyway!).

  20. #20
    Hey Charlie Pedal Faster
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    One thing I dont even think about anymore is how much more careful I am with potholes, road rifts and garbage than lighter folks. I was riding a few weeks ago with some lighter friends and they were going over stuff I avoid instictively now.

  21. #21
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    Thanks for all the advice, got into LBS, and rimstrips are now on, and running a cont. gatorskin on the rear. Happily I have put 27 miles on in the last 2 days without an issue, other than knowing its now time to invest in some good bibs!

  22. #22
    That guy from the Chi Chitown_Mike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1242Vintage View Post
    you might want to consider a set of Slime tubes, or DIY with sealant and tubes with removable cores.
    My only warning with slime tubes is if they get a hole that is too big, you're stuck and cannot patch it because the slime goo leaks out. I have had the personal misfortune of thinking it would be a good idea only to have to call in the SAG wagon (my wife) to come get me. However I have ridden on, and even my current spare in the road bike, is a patched tube that has lasted without any issues. I worked in the automotive world and a good patch will last as long as a new tire if done right as if nothing happened to the tire to begin with.

    Carry a patch kit and a spare tube and not worry about it. Just more than 2 patches in a tube you need to trash it.



    Quote Originally Posted by contango View Post
    Plus Tour tyres
    What's a tyre?



    Quote Originally Posted by PhotoJoe View Post
    I carry cotton balls in my bag to run around the inside of the tire after any flat. The cotton will snag on anything still poking through.
    I will have to remember this, I had a flat, fixed it, got a flat as I reinflated, and THEN found the piece of glass stuck in the tire (fingers bleed when glass is dragged over them). I would have gladly used a cotton ball had I known.
    Looking forward to my winter commuting adventure.....

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by happygilmore View Post
    So, pinch flat on maiden voyage of new dawes lightning, last night, 2nd night out, less than 1 mile out, another flat, rear tire again, this time it was on in spoke side of tube.
    Was this a Bikesdirect purchase? No rimtape is pretty disappointing assembly on the seller's part.

  24. #24
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    It was a bikes direct bought bike...

  25. #25
    half fast Pupsocket's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chitown_Mike View Post
    Carry a patch kit and a spare tube and not worry about it. Just more than 2 patches in a tube you need to trash it.
    Is this a rule, or just your own guideline? Why trash it?

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