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  1. #1
    It's got electrolytes! chucky's Avatar
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    tire liner brands (mr tuffy, stop flats 2, slime)

    I had a tire liner that worked miracles, but the stiff material became brittle after a few years, cracked, and sliced into my tube. I don't remember if it was "Mr Tuffy" or "Stop Flats" brand, but I replaced it with a "Slime" brand liner to see if that might prevent this problem.

    Well today I found out that the softer slime brand liner will not prevent glass from puncturing my tube at all, which is a far worse fate than a liner that just needs to be replaced when the bike is overhauled.

    Does anyone have a preference between "Stop Flats 2" and "Mr Tuffy" before I pick up a replacement? I learned my lesson that some brands are much inferior to others and I'd like to get squared away before work tomorrow.

    I heard that "Stop Flats 2" is made by the original makers of Mr Tuffy, who sold the "Mr Tuffy" brand name to someone else. Is that true?
    A sure sign of a successful experiment is when failure is prolonged until the experimenter forgets that he's even conducting an experiment.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Ziemas's Avatar
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    I've got some Mr Tuffy's in my parts box that are over 10 years old and haven't dried out as you describe.

    You might also want to look at better tires such as Conti GatorSkins or Schwalbe Marathon Supreme. Both offer suburb flat protection, but I prefer the Schawlbe as they are better in the wet and have a cushier ride.

    EDIT: After nine months of commuting on the Schwalbe Marathon Supreme I've found that they flat rather easily compared to the GatorSkin or 4Seasons. I've had four flats in nine months, which is far too many for a tire of this cost. Three were from shards of glass (the Conti tires I've used in the past seem to stop glass much better) and one was from a piece of wire that most likely would have punctured any tire.
    Last edited by Ziemas; 01-05-12 at 12:14 AM.

  3. #3
    It's got electrolytes! chucky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ziemas View Post
    I've got some Mr Tuffy's in my parts box that are over 10 years old and haven't dried out as you describe.

    You might also want to look at better tires such as Conti GatorSkins or Schwalbe Marathon Supreme. Both offer suburb flat protection, but I prefer the Schawlbe as they are better in the wet and have a cushier ride.
    I don't think they dry out. I think the flexing inside the tire causes them to wear out (I've also heard other people complain of this happening and I myself have noticed it's worse when using ~30 psi balloon tires). I guess stiff, puncture resistant materials are prone to fatigue from flexure.

    As to the tires, not all tires are available in all sizes and, in my experience, protection built into the tire doesn't work as well as a separate liner. I think a somewhat mobile layer is more difficult to cut because it is liable to slip from the cutting edge (ie like trying to cut an apple with one hand...not as easy as when you hold it with the other hand).
    Last edited by chucky; 06-20-11 at 01:53 AM.
    A sure sign of a successful experiment is when failure is prolonged until the experimenter forgets that he's even conducting an experiment.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Ziemas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chucky View Post
    I don't think they dry out. I think the flexing inside the tire causes them to wear out (I've also heard other people complain of this happening and I myself have noticed it's worse when using ~30 psi balloon tires). I guess stiff, puncture resistant materials are prone to fatigue from flexure.

    As to the tires, not all tires are available in all sizes and, in my experience, protection built into the tire doesn't work as well as a separate liner. I think a somewhat mobile layer is more difficult to cut because it is liable to slip from the cutting edge (ie like trying to cut an apple with one hand...not as easy as when you hold it with the other hand).
    My experience has been the opposite, with liners rubbing a hole into the tube. In the last few years Vectran and other materials have really made a huge difference in the puncture resistance of tires, while maintaining a relatively low weight.

    Either way, good luck in finding something that suits your needs.

  5. #5
    It's got electrolytes! chucky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ziemas View Post
    My experience has been the opposite, with liners rubbing a hole into the tube. In the last few years Vectran and other materials have really made a huge difference in the puncture resistance of tires, while maintaining a relatively low weight.
    That can also happen, but it hasn't been an issue for me once I started feathering the edges of the liner (with sandpaper or I've heard of other people melting them with a flame).

    Vectran and other miracle materials might make wonderful tires, but, once again, not all tires are available in all sizes. The only highly rated "puncture proof" tires in the 406 size are from the Schwalbe Marathon line and they weigh and cost a ton (and are not necessarily manufactured in the desired widths). For 700c there are many more choices (though not 700x23c for the Marathon Supremes), but are any as affordable as a more traditional tire combined with a liner (I'm using Maxxis Re-fuse with Mr Tuffy Ultra Lite for a total purchase price of $30 per wheel)?

    The tire liner method has worked well for me and I'm happy with it. I'm just wondering if anyone has found a difference between the "Stop Flats 2" and "Mr Tuffy" brands.
    Last edited by chucky; 06-20-11 at 02:44 AM.
    A sure sign of a successful experiment is when failure is prolonged until the experimenter forgets that he's even conducting an experiment.

  6. #6
    Quirky Grifter LesterOfPuppets's Avatar
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    I've only tried Mr. Tuffy and some brand that was recycled milk bottles back in the mid 90s. Enviro recycle liners are about like you describe the Slime - don't stop much. I have Mr. Tuffies that are about 13 years old. They do get a tad stiffer but I haven't had one cut a tube because of it yet. A couple of years ago my oldest pair got so wavy it was tough to keep them over the tread part of the tire so I rolled them up for a couple of months and they were straight again.

    I'm curious to try Panaracer's liners in my road tires. Twice the price of Mr. Tuffies, have no idea how well they work tho.

    Sorry I've no experience with the Stop Flats.

    Spin Skins is another offering. Haven't tried those either.
    1980ish Free Spirit Sunbird fixed * 1996 Mongoose IBOC Zero-G * 1997 KHS Comp * 1990-ish Scapin * Lemond Buenos Aires Triple

  7. #7
    It's got electrolytes! chucky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LesterOfPuppets View Post
    I've only tried Mr. Tuffy and some brand that was recycled milk bottles back in the mid 90s. Enviro recycle liners are about like you describe the Slime - don't stop much. I have Mr. Tuffies that are about 13 years old. They do get a tad stiffer but I haven't had one cut a tube because of it yet. A couple of years ago my oldest pair got so wavy it was tough to keep them over the tread part of the tire so I rolled them up for a couple of months and they were straight again.

    I'm curious to try Panaracer's liners in my road tires. Twice the price of Mr. Tuffies, have no idea how well they work tho.

    Sorry I've no experience with the Stop Flats.

    Spin Skins is another offering. Haven't tried those either.
    Thanks for your response.

    What kind of tire pressures do you use? I can't be bothered with studded tires for winter, but I do drop down to super low pressures (which I can do without pinch flatting because I only weigh 130 lbs). Or maybe the liners I had were Stop Flats brand and they weren't as good as the Tuffys?

    Also have you recently purchased Mr Tuffy or are they all over 10 years old?

    As to Kevlar liners like Panracer and Spin Skins, I'm generally not interested because I try to also use tires with a built in kevlar belt when possible. I figure it's better to diversify so that whatever is the weakness of one material will be potentially the strength of another.
    A sure sign of a successful experiment is when failure is prolonged until the experimenter forgets that he's even conducting an experiment.

  8. #8
    Quirky Grifter LesterOfPuppets's Avatar
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    I've some road width Mr Tuffies that are only about 5 years old. I always run pretty high pressure in my MTB and road tires. Never lower than 30psi on the MTBs.

    I just run front DIY studs in the snow/ice. Liners are great for DIY studs too.
    1980ish Free Spirit Sunbird fixed * 1996 Mongoose IBOC Zero-G * 1997 KHS Comp * 1990-ish Scapin * Lemond Buenos Aires Triple

  9. #9
    Golden Member JR97's Avatar
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    I tried the Slime liners on my road bike. They rubbed holes in my tubes. Not worth it.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Lot's Knife's Avatar
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    My Tuffys have smooshed outward over 18,000 miles, covering more surface on my tires' underside. Far from drying out, they've become almost part of the tire.

  11. #11
    GATC
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ziemas View Post
    I've got some Mr Tuffy's in my parts box that are over 10 years old and haven't dried out as you describe.

    You might also want to look at better tires such as Conti GatorSkins or Schwalbe Marathon Supreme. Both offer suburb flat protection, but I prefer the Schawlbe as they are better in the wet and have a cushier ride.
    +1 on the marathon supremes

  12. #12
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    My experience has been the opposite, with liners rubbing a hole into the tube.
    mine also.. I now run Schwalbe Marathon Plus, tires..

    the plus is a tire liner like band inside the tire casing.

    OK out side the casing, but under the tread, 'greenguard' same deal ..
    Last edited by fietsbob; 05-02-14 at 03:18 PM.

  13. #13
    nashcommguy
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    Quote Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
    mine also.. I now run Schwalbe Marathon Plus, tires..

    the plus is a tire liner like band inside the tire casing.
    Actually the plus is on the outside, but either way they're are among the most flat-resistant tires on the market. Specialized Armadillos and Continental Gatorskins are right up there as well. Save your money spent on liners and get one of the aforementioned 3 brands and you'll get thousands of flat-stress free cycling miles. Just make sure you get good rim tape like Velox or Zefal properly fitted to your rim size.

  14. #14
    Quirky Grifter LesterOfPuppets's Avatar
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    Meh, I killed a $50 Armadillo after only about 100 miles once. If I'd been running $25 tires and a Mr. Tuffy, replacement would've been much less painful.

    Now I'm running $10 Performance tires + Mr. Tuffy. My oldest pair of Mr. Tuffies dates back to the 90s. I usually cut them to length and soften the cut edges with sandpaper, or just on the sidewalk. Don't recall ever having one ever saw through a tube.

    YMMV.
    1980ish Free Spirit Sunbird fixed * 1996 Mongoose IBOC Zero-G * 1997 KHS Comp * 1990-ish Scapin * Lemond Buenos Aires Triple

  15. #15
    It's got electrolytes! chucky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lot's Knife View Post
    My Tuffys have smooshed outward over 18,000 miles, covering more surface on my tires' underside. Far from drying out, they've become almost part of the tire.
    That's also been my experience. I never said they "dried out", so I don't know why people keep repeating that.

    I said they cracked, just as an aluminum frame might crack from fatigue (not "dry out").

    Quote Originally Posted by HardyWeinberg View Post
    +1 on the marathon supremes
    Narrowest size is 700x28C. The 20x1.60 look pretty good for one of my bikes, but will they still be available when it comes time to replace? It's a waste of time, especially for just one bike (or even just one tire...I don't need extra puncture protection in the front). With liners I can use the same procedure all the time for every bike:
    Pick up any reasonable set of tires and just use a liner in the rear.

    Then I can experiment with different rim diameters, different tire widths, different treads, different price points, folding/nonfolding beads, I don't have to stay current on the marketing speak du jour from 5 different manufacturers, and I don't have to worry about losing $150 of tires if my $300 bike gets stolen.

    Quote Originally Posted by nashcommguy View Post
    Actually the plus is on the outside, but either way they're are among the most flat-resistant tires on the market. Specialized Armadillos and Continental Gatorskins are right up there as well. Save your money spent on liners and get one of the aforementioned 3 brands and you'll get thousands of flat-stress free cycling miles. Just make sure you get good rim tape like Velox or Zefal properly fitted to your rim size.
    Are they available in ISO137? http://sheldonbrown.com/tire-sizing.html#iso

    I'm kidding, the truth is that tires in this diameter don't need puncture protection because they dodge sharp objects like a kung-fu master:
    nail.jpg
    (tube not punctured)
    Last edited by chucky; 06-20-11 at 01:17 PM.
    A sure sign of a successful experiment is when failure is prolonged until the experimenter forgets that he's even conducting an experiment.

  16. #16
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    Stop Flats2 liners are a soft liner with a tough inner core. You can push a pin through the liner, but they'll cause resistance for road debris like glass (which has to puncture your tire) or thorns anyway. There is also shear stress from the torque and flexing as the tire deforms against the ground, rubbing the liner against the rim. This shear force tends to grind up bits of glass and thorn into dust, if it doesn't fully penetrate the liner.

    After 450 miles I've yet to get a flat, despite riding over broken glass and pointy rusted metal. I assume I haven't encountered anything particularly fatal, more than that the tire liner is decent.

    I bypassed the Slime liners because they're hard and prone to cause pinch flats. Everyone who reviews 'em online hates the damn things.

    As Ziemas says, the Schwalbe are decent in the rain ... I have a set coming but haven't had the chance to put 'em on. Supremes are said to be fast and puncture-resistant; Plus are said to be extremely puncture resistant, but slow and heavy. Haven't decided if I want to transfer the Stop Flats2 liners to them or bypass the liner. Part of that is I don't want to bulge out the tire oddly, although the current Kenda tires haven't shown any indication that they're liner-equipped.
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  17. #17
    Quirky Grifter LesterOfPuppets's Avatar
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    I can feel the overlap lump on uncut liners when I get up to 105, 110 psi. So I cut liners to length so there's about 1/8" exposed innertube or so. Then sand edges off to a nice round profile
    1980ish Free Spirit Sunbird fixed * 1996 Mongoose IBOC Zero-G * 1997 KHS Comp * 1990-ish Scapin * Lemond Buenos Aires Triple

  18. #18
    nashcommguy
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    Quote Originally Posted by LesterOfPuppets View Post
    Meh, I killed a $50 Armadillo after only about 100 miles once. If I'd been running $25 tires and a Mr. Tuffy, replacement would've been much less painful.

    Now I'm running $10 Performance tires + Mr. Tuffy. My oldest pair of Mr. Tuffies dates back to the 90s. I usually cut them to length and soften the cut edges with sandpaper, or just on the sidewalk. Don't recall ever having one ever saw through a tube.

    YMMV.
    Well, there are always exceptions, I suppose. Flaw in the tire construction, most likely. In 24 years of commuting/touring/utility/recreational cycling I've tried every product aforementioned in this thread including Nu-teck airless to eliminate flats. Until I got SMPs I've never been able to reconcile high psi and liners w/o more flat issues than the combo was worth trouble-wise. 2 flats in over 17,000 miles since purchasing the SMPs. One was a weakness in the tube causing a blowout and the other was a 2" self-starting screw. 5 years of urban/mtb commuting w/low psi street tires/Mr. Tuffys was the exception I'll admit. I think I had 2 flats in all that time as well.

    So, my recommendation is to avoid liners w/high psi tube/tire combos and use them w/lower psi mtb street tires. YMMV

  19. #19
    Senior Member
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    I run 90PSI tires at 70-85PSI. What are you people doing at 110PSI holy crap. 700c x 32 is good enough for me.
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  20. #20
    Quirky Grifter LesterOfPuppets's Avatar
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    I've got everything from 23s-38s at the moment. I run my 38s at about 60 psi or so.
    1980ish Free Spirit Sunbird fixed * 1996 Mongoose IBOC Zero-G * 1997 KHS Comp * 1990-ish Scapin * Lemond Buenos Aires Triple

  21. #21
    Quirky Grifter LesterOfPuppets's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nashcommguy View Post
    Well, there are always exceptions, I suppose. Flaw in the tire construction, most likely.
    Nope, in the dark I just hit the bottom of a beer bottle just right so that a jagged edge gashed the sidewall. I've had my Mr. Tuffies in lots of tires. $7.50 apiece. Saving the money on a Mr. Tuffy to buy $50 tires instead just does not compute.

    I've read accounts of them rubbing holes into tubes and today for the first time an account of a liner rubbing a hole through a tire! Gasp!

    Those run counter to my experiences.
    1980ish Free Spirit Sunbird fixed * 1996 Mongoose IBOC Zero-G * 1997 KHS Comp * 1990-ish Scapin * Lemond Buenos Aires Triple

  22. #22
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Oregon's bottle bill has made broken beer bottles very rare,
    since each bottle is worth Money.

    WA has no deposit on their bottles.. so they get thrown about ..

  23. #23
    Quirky Grifter LesterOfPuppets's Avatar
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    Odd that my gashed Armadillo happened in OR . MI must be totally devoid of glass on roads, what with their 10 deposit.
    1980ish Free Spirit Sunbird fixed * 1996 Mongoose IBOC Zero-G * 1997 KHS Comp * 1990-ish Scapin * Lemond Buenos Aires Triple

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
    Oregon's bottle bill has made broken beer bottles very rare,
    since each bottle is worth Money.

    WA has no deposit on their bottles.. so they get thrown about ..
    Please cite this for me. My state has no bottle deposit and I want them to have one.

    I would actually like to have a law that states that the beer delivery truck must be a round-trip truck that retrieves beer bottles. Upon reaching a store to deliver bottles (soda, beer), the truck must take any empties from the store to its own capacity. They can deliver these to a recycling company or take them back to their parent company.

    The idea here is that plastic Pepsi bottles should go back to Pepsi for disposal or to a local recycling company. More importantly, glass bottles would wind up going back to the local distributor, who would put them on a truck that just came to offload fresh Pepsi or Beer from the bottling company, who would take the empties back to the bottling co, who would sort and wash them. Broken or otherwise unusable bottles would go to recycling or trash.

    Glass bottles are expensive. I personally reuse beer bottles, cleaning and sanitizing them for ... well ... bottling fresh beer for aging and storage. Plastic bottles are a ridiculous "cost saving" measure that saves nothing except the "cost" of better shipping facilities that protect the bottles, which the beer and wine industry seems to survive without.

    I got cut walking on broken glass as a kid, surprise surprise; a deposit on glass bottles encourages small children to find things (do you know how much candy I bought from plastic jugs I fished out of the trash can?) and a 10 cent deposit on a 56 cent bottle makes a case of 12 beers worth $1.20. I've seen whole beer bottles rolling around on the bike trail here, yes people leave these around and plenty of broken glass in the streets (I ride in it).

    If people will really cling to those glass bottles for a shiny nickel, then **** it, I'd pay tax money for the administration board to enforce this stuff. What, communism? Capitalism is crap; the optimal balance is somewhere between a total free market and total government control. If the government thinks recycling and reusing bottles is good for the community, then it should make some recommendations for how to build the infrastructure, and make some very vague laws about how to fit regulations. Here's the best hands-off I can get:

    • Delivery trucks must retrieve empties for their own product to capacity of the truck; one-way circuit trucks must make a second round or send a second truck.
    • Trucks may carry anything they wish (i.e. plastic bottles for recycling even though they deliver glass; any sort of beer bottle, as they're all interchangeable except branded Sam Adams bottles).
    • There's a deposit of X% of original cost of the bottle to be paid to the consumer.
    • Any company accepting discarded container product (bottles) is responsible for deposit (Shipper must pay shop keeper; bottling co must pay shipper).
    • This is a 20 year initiative: 10 years before mandatory compliance, 10 years before regulations phase out


    That's as deep as the government has to go. "If you bring a bottle, you must take a bottle and pay back a small deposit. Do what you wish beyond that. You have 10 years to comply, and in 10 more years we will lift requirements." Nobody wants to pay you to take your trash, so they will want to cost save by reusing bottles, or selling them to a raw materials company that can recycle glass and plastic bottles.

    Since we can't reuse plastic bottles, those will get recycled, or phased out for glass; since it's expensive to melt down glass, reuse will be favored over recycling. Glass bottles will likely become more sturdy and better made as well, since cheap 30 cent bottles that constantly crack just from the thermal stress of the weather and the vibration of shipping will last 1 round trip, while 60 cent bottles that can be reused 30-50 times will cost much less overall (and possibly even generate revenue with a cheaper product: Why sell a beer for $1.50/bottle in a 40 cent bottle when you can sell it for $1.20/bottle in a 60 cent bottle that gets reused 30 times at 3 cents more margin plus a 5 cent deposit?)
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  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by LesterOfPuppets View Post
    Odd that my gashed Armadillo happened in OR . MI must be totally devoid of glass on roads, what with their 10 deposit.
    97% redemption rate.
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