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  1. #1
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    How long would you ride a tire with a boot?

    My rear tire (Gatorskin) got a small divot - like a cone shaped divot that's about 1/8 inch acrossed and goes to the threads of the tire. The problem is that it tends to pick up debris that normally wouldn't be an issue and I get a flat - esp when it's wet. So yesterday after getting a flat on the way to work i put a boot in (one of the Park adhesive boots that Iv'e been carrying around for years) and rode the rest of the way in.

    To double the issue, on the way home I got another flat from a decent sized piece of glass that cut another 1/4 inch gash in the tire. So I used another boot on that to prevent it from picking up debris and causing more flats -- because the gash spreads open when the tire is inflated.

    I was too busy to change out the tires last night, so rode it in this morning -- and other than an annoying little "bump bump" from the boots pressing out the shape of the tire (not enought to see, but enough to cause a tiny bump on smooth road surfaces), I had no issues.

    Without the cuts and the boots, I'd say there's about 700 miles left on the tire. So would you keep riding it, or swap the front onto the back and put a new front tire on? (I have two or three extras on hand).

  2. #2
    Senior Member tjspiel's Avatar
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    I know some people that have tried to use shoe goo and the like to fill cuts in. I'm not sure how well it works. I'd be inclined to replace the tire, especially since you've got spares. Sounds like the tire and you disagree over how many miles it's got left in it.
    If you're not riding with a psychedelic gecko on your shirt, you ARE having a substandard experience.

  3. #3
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    No brainer to me - I would swap it out. A new tire is a small price to pay for peace of mind, especially if you are commuting on this tire. And in your case, you have extra tires so there's no price to pay...

    - John

  4. #4
    genec genec's Avatar
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    Until I got home to get a new good tire.

  5. #5
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    I used Gorilla Tape to boot a sidewall blowout awhile back; held just fine. I use Nashbar Primus 2 tires on my road bike(s) and continued to ride the tire for about a month until the Primus 2s were on sale for $9.99, then ordered some more.

  6. #6
    Senior Member rumrunn6's Avatar
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    my vote is to replace this damaged tire
    cycling is like baseball ~ it doesn't take much to make it interesting

  7. #7
    7-speed doomsday prepper ThermionicScott's Avatar
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    The smart answer would be to replace it with a good tire ASAP. The stubborn idiot answer? See my sig.
    Quote Originally Posted by chandltp View Post
    There's no such thing as too far.. just lack of time
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  8. #8
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    Thanks...tha'ts what I was leaning toward - will replace tonight. I guess when I spent half the ride this morning looking down at the tire to see if it was looking flat that should given me my answer!

    TS - ...good luck!

  9. #9
    ouate de phoque dramiscram's Avatar
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    I'm curious to know what mileage you did with the tire so far. I had problems with a brand new gatorskin, 3 flats in 500 kms. I took the tire of the bike because I lost all confidence in it but I've been told by a lot of forum member that I was just unlucky with a very good tire. After a few weeks with another tire (and no flat) I decided to give the tire another chance so I put it back on the bike, first ride this morning with no problems but now I see this new thread....
    Originally Posted by Leebo

    Headwind is like a hill without a soul. Just gear down and suffer.
    Quote Originally Posted by jrickards View Post
    Headwinds are hills dipped in evil!

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by dramiscram View Post
    I'm curious to know what mileage you did with the tire so far.
    I'm not entirely sure for a couple reasons - 1, when I swap tires I take the front tire off and put it on the rear, then put a fresh tire on the front, and 2, I dont' tend to keep track of stuff like that. But trying to think back -- it's been on for most of my riding this year and I'm around 1,400 miles for the year -- and I'm sure it was not a new tire when I put it on this year (had been riding on a wider tire earlier in the year). So maybe somewhere between 2-3 k miles on the tire in a front/back combination.

    The tire is worn flat, and the flat spot is probably just under 1/2 inch wide.

    I've been riding gatorskins for a long time, never had the issues I've had with this one even w hen I've worn them down to the threads.

  11. #11
    I am a caffine girl colleen c's Avatar
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    Change the tire. I booted my Gatorskin three month ago when a small piece of glass cut through. The cut was questionable so I boot and replaced it with a new tube. Three month later, I had a very slow leak in the same tire. Each time I filled tube, the air lasted about two miles. I filled the tube several times to get home. I took the tube out when I got home. The boot was wrinkle and probably cause by the rolling of the tire each time it rolls over the boot. The edge of the Park boot where it was wrinkle was cutting into the tube. The residue of the sticky adhesive from the patch was sealing the hole in the tube causing a very slow leak.

    I have the same issue with my 700x28 Gatorskin in wet weather. The soft rubber picks up little chunk of glass like magnet and steel. My front tire is All condition Armadillo 700x25 and they hardly ever flat out or have glass embedded in them, however I do lose that cushy ride comfort in comparison with gaitorskin.
    "Difference between a well dressed cyclist riding a two wheeled bicycle and a badly dressed cyclist riding a Recumbent is only a-tire"
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  12. #12
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    Thanks for the info Colleen...I might try the Armadillos when I run through the current stock of Gatorskins that I have. There seems to be more debris on my local roads than usual this year.

  13. #13
    ouate de phoque dramiscram's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by billyymc View Post
    So maybe somewhere between 2-3 k miles on the tire in a front/back combination.

    The tire is worn flat, and the flat spot is probably just under 1/2 inch wide.

    I've been riding gatorskins for a long time, never had the issues I've had with this one even w hen I've worn them down to the threads.
    I was told on this forum that I could easily hope to go between 7-8000 miles on a gatorskin. What do you think?
    Originally Posted by Leebo

    Headwind is like a hill without a soul. Just gear down and suffer.
    Quote Originally Posted by jrickards View Post
    Headwinds are hills dipped in evil!

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by dramiscram View Post
    I was told on this forum that I could easily hope to go between 7-8000 miles on a gatorskin. What do you think?
    That has not even been close to my own experience. But I'm a clyde, so that probably is part of it. I imagine the types of road surfaces you ride on have an impact as well. I get somewhere around 3k total miles out of a gatorskin (that includes the time on the front then the time after I switch it to the back) I think.

  15. #15
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    that includes the time on the front then the time after I switch it to the back
    Just be sure that you always rotate to the back and not to the front. Seriously.
    http://sheldonbrown.com/tire-rotation.html

  16. #16
    Holy crip he's a crapple
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    I tore the sidewall of my front tire when my front brake pad on my old brake calipers came loose, the pad rubbed through the side of the tire.

    the tube popped, I replaced it with my spare and that popped as soon as I put weight on the bike and rode 3'.

    I never knew about 'boots'..so I replaced the tube with a heavy duty really thick thorn proof rubber tube.

    That was 8 months ago, commuting 15 miles a day...the tire/tube still bulges and has never lost air, the tire is a continental ultra sport that is now about 15 months old, still holds 100psi and rides like normal.

    I have a short ~3 mile commute so if it catastrophically fails on me I'll just walk it home and take a different bike the next trip, lol. Stop stressing so much about the little things, you'll live longer
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  17. #17
    incazzare. lostarchitect's Avatar
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    I rode a Paseala Tourguard with 2 boots back and forth to work for about 200 miles until I got around to buying a new tire.
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  18. #18
    Galveston County Texas 10 Wheels's Avatar
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    I got 200 miles out of a Parks Boot on a 700 X 23 tire.
    Tubes move some inside the tire and the boot wore out from the inside.
    .2 flats BMC 85 mi 004.jpg
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  19. #19
    Packfodding 3 caloso's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by genec View Post
    Until I got home to get a new good tire.
    Me too.
    Cyclists of the world, unite! You have nothing to lube but your chains!

  20. #20
    Senior Member tjspiel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blind View Post
    I tore the sidewall of my front tire when my front brake pad on my old brake calipers came loose, the pad rubbed through the side of the tire.

    the tube popped, I replaced it with my spare and that popped as soon as I put weight on the bike and rode 3'.

    I never knew about 'boots'..so I replaced the tube with a heavy duty really thick thorn proof rubber tube.

    That was 8 months ago, commuting 15 miles a day...the tire/tube still bulges and has never lost air, the tire is a continental ultra sport that is now about 15 months old, still holds 100psi and rides like normal.

    I have a short ~3 mile commute so if it catastrophically fails on me I'll just walk it home and take a different bike the next trip, lol. Stop stressing so much about the little things, you'll live longer
    Unless he has a blowout at 20 or 30 mph.

    Personally those kinds of risks just aren't worth it. The tire is clearly compromised. It MIGHT be OK to continue riding it that way for awhile but why?

    The tire is literally where the rubber hits the road. A catastrophic failure probably won't cause him to lose control and probably wouldn't lead to any rim damage but a problem is clearly a matter of "when" and not "if".
    Last edited by tjspiel; 06-26-12 at 03:31 PM.
    If you're not riding with a psychedelic gecko on your shirt, you ARE having a substandard experience.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blind View Post
    I have a short ~3 mile commute so if it catastrophically fails on me I'll just walk it home and take a different bike the next trip, lol. Stop stressing so much about the little things, you'll live longer
    Not stressing - just never used a boot before and wondered how long they might typically work. 3 mile commute you could walk. Mine is 14 miles one way. Or 9 miles if I take the hilly route on a 55 mph road with no shoulder. I prefer to have an idea of the condition of my tires - and the rest of my bike.

    I also have anywhere from 1 to 3 descents where i hit 42 + mph on my commute (depending on route).

    Stop stressing what other people do....you'll live longer.

    TJS - good point. Not to mention I have two or three brand new gatorskins hanging in my garage (get em on sale so I stock up when I can).
    Last edited by billyymc; 06-26-12 at 03:41 PM.

  22. #22
    Kid A TurbineBlade's Avatar
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    This thread reminded me of this Simpsons's episode when Homer found his car in NYC:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JvQaFSklu0A
    Cyclist, angler and aquarist

  23. #23
    Holy crip he's a crapple
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    Quote Originally Posted by tjspiel View Post
    Unless he has a blowout at 20 or 30 mph.

    Personally those kinds of risks just aren't worth it. The tire is clearly compromised. It MIGHT be OK to continue riding it that way for awhile but why?

    The tire is literally where the rubber hits the road. A catastrophic failure probably won't cause him to lose control and probably wouldn't lead to any rim damage but a problem is clearly a matter of "when" and not "if".
    The first time my tube went 'poof' because of the blown out sidewall was when I hit the brakes going ~28mph on a downhill leading to a 90* right turn near my office.

    I did the smart thing and continued straight and used my other brake to slowly come to a stop...the bike doesn't explode when a sidewall of a tire blows out. Worst case I could imagine the tire coming off the rim and getting stuck in the brake caliper, but mine didn't even lose the bead seated on the rim, just a ~2" long hole in the sidewall 1/8" above the bead.
    2012 Trek Madone 5.2 64cm - 1984 68cm KHS 9spd/sti swapped to DA 7700
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  24. #24
    just ride
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    My CX tires whose treads I have worn out from street riding and have had 3 flats in the back are currently using a duct tape boot where a nail pierced. Only until my road tires come in from the bike shop though! I'm pushing my luck until another flat.
    what is this 'road tax' you speak of?

  25. #25
    Senior Member tjspiel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blind View Post
    The first time my tube went 'poof' because of the blown out sidewall was when I hit the brakes going ~28mph on a downhill leading to a 90* right turn near my office.

    I did the smart thing and continued straight and used my other brake to slowly come to a stop...the bike doesn't explode when a sidewall of a tire blows out. Worst case I could imagine the tire coming off the rim and getting stuck in the brake caliper, but mine didn't even lose the bead seated on the rim, just a ~2" long hole in the sidewall 1/8" above the bead.
    Oh, I can imagine plenty of bad if a tire goes poof, - especially a front tire, - especially while cornering.

    A back tire not so much. Pretty easy to recover from a back wheel skidding or sliding. Anything that causes one to lose traction on a front wheel is another matter.
    If you're not riding with a psychedelic gecko on your shirt, you ARE having a substandard experience.

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