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Old 05-06-14, 08:29 PM   #1
TransitBiker
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Curious: Nitrogen for bike tires?

I was wondering if there were any products out there that allowed the use of pure nitrogen for bike tires? I ask this, because i really want to not worry about keeping tires inflated to spec every time i go to ride, and especially if its been sitting in higher or lower than ideal temps for many hours in a day.

Links to product sites welcomed.

- Andy
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Old 05-06-14, 09:40 PM   #2
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Please tell me this is a troll thread.
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Old 05-06-14, 09:52 PM   #3
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You really think nitrogen will negate the need to fill the tires when you are already filling them with 78% nitrogen?
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Old 05-06-14, 09:53 PM   #4
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https://www.google.com/#q=nitrogen+b...+tire+inflator and one of the results is from the Bicycle Mechanics forum here on BF Nitrogen inflated tires - cheaper than CO2 and keeps rims cooler under braking?
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Old 05-06-14, 10:07 PM   #5
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Thank you!!

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Old 05-06-14, 10:24 PM   #6
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Why not helium?
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Old 05-06-14, 10:42 PM   #7
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Why not helium?
It would leak out due to small atomic size..

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Old 05-06-14, 10:53 PM   #8
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I was wondering if there were any products out there that allowed the use of pure nitrogen for bike tires? I ask this, because i really want to not worry about keeping tires inflated to spec every time i go to ride, and especially if its been sitting in higher or lower than ideal temps for many hours in a day.

Links to product sites welcomed.

- Andy
If you are correct that oxygen leaks out faster then after a couple of weeks there will be virtually no oxygen left just nitrogen. No need for expensive gimics.

You'll still get flats though.
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Old 05-06-14, 11:08 PM   #9
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It was my understanding there was brief nitrogen car tire craze a few years ago. If I remember there was no discernible difference other than cost for the average driver. I have never heard of nitrogen for bicycle tires. Just stick with air.
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Old 05-06-14, 11:17 PM   #10
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Maybe use a radon gas then? Nice large atomic size. You might even be able to ride without lights.
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Old 05-06-14, 11:21 PM   #11
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As you my have guessed, i am not shy in trying new things and seeing if they work better (in theory at least) backed by lots of facts & research. I mean, i looked at the N360 thoroughly before i even allowed the bike i have now to be a purchase option, and it has turned out to be one of the defining pluses. The only reason i asked, is because unlike some i do a safety check before riding every time, and i'm tall (6'5) so using the pump means potential discomfort for my back that would then last the rest of the day. On top of that, carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas, and the whole point of me living car free is to maximize reduction of my carbon footprint, so the c02 option is out for me.

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Old 05-06-14, 11:24 PM   #12
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Maybe use a radon gas then? Nice large atomic size. You might even be able to ride without lights.
Yea, i think i'd rather not go that route, as i prefer not to develop cancer.. That would really cut into my riding. /montypythonesque

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Old 05-07-14, 01:18 AM   #13
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As you my have guessed, i am not shy in trying new things and seeing if they work better (in theory at least) backed by lots of facts & research. I mean, i looked at the N360 thoroughly before i even allowed the bike i have now to be a purchase option, and it has turned out to be one of the defining pluses. The only reason i asked, is because unlike some i do a safety check before riding every time, and i'm tall (6'5) so using the pump means potential discomfort for my back that would then last the rest of the day. On top of that, carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas, and the whole point of me living car free is to maximize reduction of my carbon footprint, so the c02 option is out for me.

- Andy
Maybe you could try using N20 canisters. Might be interchangeable with CO2 canisters. The big plus is that if you got in a horrible accident and were in a ton of pain you could deflate the tire into your lungs as an a aesthetic.

If CO2 works for you just use that. The CO2 that comes out of those little thumbsticks isn't environmentally bad. It's non-climate changing. Making a bunch of disposable metal cylinders is a little but that seems to be what you're looking for.
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Old 05-07-14, 01:31 AM   #14
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Maybe you could try using N20 canisters. Might be interchangeable with CO2 canisters. The big plus is that if you got in a horrible accident and were in a ton of pain you could deflate the tire into your lungs as an a aesthetic.

If CO2 works for you just use that. The CO2 that comes out of those little thumbsticks isn't environmentally bad. It's non-climate changing. Making a bunch of disposable metal cylinders is a little but that seems to be what you're looking for.

Good points. When i have a few bucks, and after some other related purchases, i think i will experiment a bit & see what works best.

I now picture myself with a garage full of gas cylinders and various filling apparatus....




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Old 05-07-14, 01:39 AM   #15
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Uh, oh; it's Dr. Frankenstein.
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Old 05-07-14, 05:44 AM   #16
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You really think nitrogen will negate the need to fill the tires when you are already filling them with 78% nitrogen?
Exactly. After the oxygen leaks out and you repump the tyres, there should be around 95% nitrogen. After several times you add air to your tyres, they will be more and more nitrogen. Theoreticaly at least.
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Old 05-07-14, 07:35 AM   #17
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i'm tall (6'5) so using the pump means potential discomfort for my back that would then last the rest of the day.
If topping up your tires is enough to make your back hurt for the rest of the day you should see your doctor.
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Old 05-07-14, 07:40 AM   #18
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I think our local Costco fills tires with Nitrogen.
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Old 05-07-14, 08:03 AM   #19
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If topping up your tires is enough to make your back hurt for the rest of the day you should see your doctor.
My back is fine, i just don't fit anywhere. I have to lean to do most things day to day, and in backs of cars i gotta lean to one side to fit often, just makes my muscles worn out so they get temperamental like a tired toddler getting cranky.

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Old 05-07-14, 08:48 AM   #20
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Is mostly the pressure changes from temperature swings that you're going after?
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Old 05-07-14, 09:20 AM   #21
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Unless I already had the equipment for storing and dispensing Nitrogen I would stick to air. I can't believe any benefits would outweigh the costs.
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Old 05-07-14, 10:32 AM   #22
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Is mostly the pressure changes from temperature swings that you're going after?
Yea, in hot the non nitrogen expands then gets out faster, making the tire floppy & hard to roll, which further increases heating & tread wear in some cases. Then in the cold as the compound warms from flexing it gets more compliant & the non nitrogen inside leaks out then cooling down it looses even more pressure. Granted the one tube i had an issue with was in use for 3 years, but still, irritating to do a precision inflation 20 times a month when i just wanna hop on & go.

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Old 05-07-14, 10:51 AM   #23
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On top of that, carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas, and the whole point of me living car free is to maximize reduction of my carbon footprint, so the c02 option is out for me.

- Andy
Wait, these are two separate issues. The only CO2 issue is with inflators for use on the road. N2 instead of air for home use with big cylinders might be doable. N2 for a flat tire inflator probably wouldn't be; since it's still a gas at the required pressure the cylinders would be 10 times as big as CO2 cylinders and you wouldn't want to carry one with you.


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Yea, in hot the non nitrogen expands then gets out faster, making the tire floppy & hard to roll, which further increases heating & tread wear in some cases. Then in the cold as the compound warms from flexing it gets more compliant & the non nitrogen inside leaks out then cooling down it looses even more pressure. Granted the one tube i had an issue with was in use for 3 years, but still, irritating to do a precision inflation 20 times a month when i just wanna hop on & go.

- Andy
If this only happened with one tube, then it's the tube's issue, and has nothing to do with N2 vs standard air. Most tires and tubes in good conditions could easily go a week on regular air without needing pressure adjustments.

And nitrogen, oxygen, CO2, and pretty much all other gases expand at exactly the same rate with temperature increase. You have misidentified your problem.

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Old 05-07-14, 11:21 AM   #24
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Wait, these are two separate issues. The only CO2 issue is with inflators for use on the road. N2 instead of air for home use with big cylinders might be doable. N2 for a flat tire inflator probably wouldn't be; since it's still a gas at the required pressure the cylinders would be 10 times as big as CO2 cylinders and you wouldn't want to carry one with you.




If this only happened with one tube, then it's the tube's issue, and has nothing to do with N2 vs standard air. Most tires and tubes in good conditions could easily go a week on regular air without needing pressure adjustments.

And nitrogen, oxygen, CO2, and pretty much all other gases expand at exactly the same rate with temperature increase. You have misidentified your problem.
No, two separate issues. Sorry, i don't sleep well and hae been unusualy tired lately, something to do with stress i'm guessing. I'll come back to this when i've had a proper night's sleep & i can form a correct clear thought haha.

Sorry!

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Old 05-07-14, 11:46 AM   #25
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The cost/benefit calc doesn't work out for most of us "homebodies."
Up and running is probably about $250, all in, plus cost of refills when necessary.
And you'll still have to watch your pressures, just less frequently.

Neat idea, but in practice... meh.
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