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  1. #1
    Lance Hater Laggard's Avatar
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    Ever get that flat feeling?

    My teammates and I used to discuss this event and never figured it out. You're riding along on a flat surface when suddenly it feels like you are losing air. You get off your bike expecting a flat or a leaky tire only to find that all is fine.


    What is going on? In 20 years I've yet to understand this.
    i may have overreacted

  2. #2
    Subjectively Insane MilitantPotato's Avatar
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    All the time. I think my inner ear plays games with me. Gives the feeling that the bike is squirming.

    More often then not I'm feeling really slow and think the tires have gone down or the brakes are rubbing, though. Never is the case, I'm just slow.

  3. #3
    Cold Rain and Snow Hot Potato's Avatar
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    For me, it has been a sense of squirming that is either real or imagined. Having had enough flats that I let progress to advanced squirminess, perhaps I overreact and imagine things. I would say it happens sometime at least every other ride, if not every ride. A glance back at the rear wheel contact patch is reassuring, and I barely slow down. I tend to think that I hit a spot with just a tad bit less traction, and my flat-paranoid brain screams out. I have even stopped the bike because sand or dirt sounded like air escaping - having had a 35mph front tire deflation once, anything that sounds like air escaping really gets my attention fast. Since converting to armadillo tires, I haven't a single flat in months, but my paranoia persists.
    Quietly elevating being dropped to an art form

  4. #4
    __________ seeker333's Avatar
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    That's happened to me occasionally.

    Get off, check tire, it seems fine.

    Perhaps this is a sign of worrying too much, or maybe I hit a patch of dark energy (74% of the universe...).

  5. #5
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    I had that feeling once. They had just repaved the path near me, and evidently they opened it before it was totally cured. I got off of the bike to check what was wrong and instantly knew what was going on without even checking the tire - my feet were even sticking to the fresh asphalt.

    I wasn't causing any deformations in the asphalt so it was MOSTLY cured, however not totally and it was like riding my bike on a path made of fly paper. Very weird feeling.

  6. #6
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    I had this often for a year or so after I crashed from a rapid flat during a fast turn. I chalk it up to paranoia, and the variations in road conditions. Eventually the feeling went away.

  7. #7
    It's true, man.
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    I get it in the car way more than on the bike.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Pinyon's Avatar
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    I've always attributed it to pavement irregularities (wobbly pavement that is difficult to see while on the bike), or how I'm handling the bike.
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  9. #9
    Senior Member JonathanGennick's Avatar
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    I do get that "I've got a flat" feeling every now and again. I don't understand it either.

  10. #10
    Lance Hater Laggard's Avatar
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    Glad this is common. I find it usually lasts only a short distance.
    i may have overreacted

  11. #11
    imi
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    Quote Originally Posted by JonathanGennick View Post
    I do get that "I've got a flat" feeling every now and again. I don't understand it either.
    me too, hardly believe it when I get off and squeeze the (fully inflated) tyre... oh I only experience this on the rear wheel... wierd stuff

    p.s cool thread, I would never have thought about bringing this to discussion as I always thought it was "just me" (as most others do I imagine)

  12. #12
    Senior Member bhop's Avatar
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    Happens to me too. I figure it's because i've used up all my energy.

  13. #13
    J E R S E Y S B E S T Jerseysbest's Avatar
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    Oh good I'm not crazy.
    Quote Originally Posted by SingingSabre View Post
    Cheating: a symptom of the problem.

  14. #14
    Senior Member katcorot's Avatar
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    glad im not crazy either
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  15. #15
    Cold Rain and Snow Hot Potato's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by imi View Post
    me too, hardly believe it when I get off and squeeze the (fully inflated) tyre... oh I only experience this on the rear wheel... wierd stuff
    yep- all false alarms have all been the rear wheel.
    Quietly elevating being dropped to an art form

  16. #16
    Lance Hater Laggard's Avatar
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    I'm going to try and recreate it. Next time it happens I'll turn around and ride the same section. This must be solved for the sanity of all the worlds cyclists!
    i may have overreacted

  17. #17
    Senior Member nkfrench's Avatar
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    I've ridden over a few stretches of grooved pavement where the back tire makes a wallowing noise. Very disconcerting and it seems like it slows me down.

  18. #18
    Comfortably Numb! BA Commuter's Avatar
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    I guess if you ride enough, you get that slow feeling once in a while and the squirmy feeling from time to time!
    “Cycling is like church. Many attend, but few understand." -Jim Burlant

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  19. #19
    on your left.
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    I find if you get off the bike and get back on, all is well.
    Quote Originally Posted by caloso View Post
    I learned this the hard way. They say that experience is the best teacher, but I would have been preferred to just read about it on the internet.

  20. #20
    M_S
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    Yeah. But I also get phantom vibrates from my cellphone: even when it's not in my pocket.

    My brain sucks.

  21. #21
    Senior Member Fremdchen's Avatar
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    Happens to me too. Maybe it's my horribly out of true wheel.

  22. #22
    Senior Moment bikegeek57's Avatar
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    had a newly rebuilt wheel put on the bike recently and was freaked out by a rather loud popping sound. thought oh no a blowout. nope just a rock pinched out to the side. tire was fine. I did feel a little foolish standing there checking my not-flat tire. just a little over-protective of my new wheel. oh well.

  23. #23
    It's true, man.
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    Quote Originally Posted by M_S View Post
    Yeah. But I also get phantom vibrates from my cellphone: even when it's not in my pocket.

    My brain sucks.
    I get those, too. FML.

  24. #24
    J3L 2404 gbcb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by M_S View Post
    Yeah. But I also get phantom vibrates from my cellphone: even when it's not in my pocket.

    My brain sucks.
    You too? Ha!

    As for the bike thing, I find it sometimes happens when I hit a patch of smoother-than-usual road surface. I ride a rigid, small-framed aluminum bike with skinny tires, so any excessive smoothness has me worrying.

  25. #25
    Cold Rain and Snow Hot Potato's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by M_S View Post
    Yeah. But I also get phantom vibrates from my cellphone: even when it's not in my pocket.

    My brain sucks.
    Me too! Funny thing is that I frequently don't feel the real phone vibrations. I am known for my loud, obnoxious ring tones.
    Quietly elevating being dropped to an art form

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