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Thread: Gluing Tubulars

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    Gluing Tubulars

    I bought a new 'cross wheelset a few weeks back - ultegra hubs, Reflex Rims. The wheels came with Tufo tires and two rolls of Tufo Extreme tape (or something like that). I've glued two tubulars for a track bike a few years back, but not with tape and this 'cross thing is new to me. I've stretched them. I would like to use the tufo tape, because I already have it. I live in Seattle, so the conditions are muddy and wet, even in August apparently.

    -Do I need to combine it with glue?
    -Has anyone ever added a bead of silicone around the rim to keep out water?
    -A link to the so-called "belgian method"?
    -Any other Advice?

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    'Borrowed' from post by jroden on roadbikereview cyclocross forum...which was pinched from Greg Reans blog. I found this to be helpful...I didn't use as much glue as they suggested but it seems to be working fine:

    i stole this from greg reans blog, also visit park tools site they have a nice step by step:

    Sticky Fingers

    So, as promised I guess that I will give you the low-down on how I glue my cyclocross tubulars.

    I should probably first point out that there is a pretty big difference between road tubulars and 'cross tubulars in terms of how they stay on the rim. A road tubular at 8 bar of pressure will stay on the rim almost by itself, sans-glue. The glue is essentially there to prevent any movement between the tire and rim from starting in the first place. You can try this if you have a new tire and new rim at home; just throw the tire on the rim, pump it up and try to push it off. Hard, yeah? Now release the pressure to 1.8 bar (about 25psi, a standard CX racing pressure) and the tire will slide right off. Scary. That is why standard tub-glueing knowledge does not necessarily apply for 'cross use - the only thing holding the tire on the rim is the glue, there is no help from air pressure.

    Next up is the issue of tubular tape. Great for road applications, especially the Tufo variety, horrible for 'cross. Here's why. As has been repeated ad-nauseum in other tubular installation instructions, the bond between tire and rim at the very edge is über-important if you want to keep your rubber on. This is even more critical in 'cross because there is so much water flying around on the course and from the ubiquitous pressure-washers. If there is any gap in this area, water and dirt will penetrate into the bond and weaken it to the point where it may fail in cornering. Tubular tape is bad because it never completely fills the interface between tire and rim. It also causes the center section of the tire to sit a little higher than the edges, making it easier for a gap to form. This is true even of the so-called "Belgian Method", where glue is applied to both tire and rim and tape used to complete the joint. Another bone of contention here- if you are using glue and tubular tape, why not just use glue?

    My solution to this problem is Vittoria Mastik´one - and lots of it. Next best is Continental. If you can get your hands on a big can of the stuff, so much the better. If not, be prepared to use about 3 (maybe even 4) litle tubes per wheel, if you are starting with new fresh rims and tires. My team-mate Jiri told me he uses 1 can for 4 wheels. That's a crapload of glue. Some people will say that's too much, but Jiri has also never had a rolled tub in 14 years of high level racing. You decide.

    You should probably start by cleaning your rims, just a really quick polish with some light sand paper and then acetone should do the trick. Now you need to apply a relatively thin layer of glue to the rim, making sure that you get it all the way out to the edges of the rim. I don't really care how you spread it, just get it on there. Take your tires, put a little air in them to make them easier to handle and put a thin layer onto the base tape, making sure the entire surface of the tape is saturated (but not dripping) with glue. Now you wait. General rule of thumb is 8 hours of drying time between coats on the rim, but basically as long as it is dry to the touch and not too rubbery you can apply the next coat. Ideally you should do 3 thin-ish coats to the rim this way. For most people who aren't sitting around all day waiting for glue to dry this means three days. Somewhere in these 3 days you need to pull out the tires (remember them?) and put another coat of glue on the base tape. This layer should be über-thick - as thick as you can make it and not have it running off the tape as you apply it. This is when a brush of some type is required. Let that dry overnight too. Finally, on the fourth day you can put the tire to the rim. Put a medium-thick layer of glue on the rim, give the tire a quick stretchy-stretchy and fire it on the rim, starting at the valve. For God's sake make sure you put the tire on in the right direction first, otherwise you will make an atrocious mess peeling it off while the glue is wet (assuming you didn't make an atrocious mess putting it on. Sorry, can't help you there!). Make sure the tire is centered, put it up to 4 bar and leave overnight. Next day, deflate the tire and check the edge bonding by going around the entire circumference of the tire (on both sides), trying to peel it off the rim with your thumbs. If any gaps form, you need to poke some glue in there and inflate the tire again. Leave overnight again. Check the edges again. Now nothing short of a herculean effort should separate the tire from the rim - this a good thing. The glue generally requires 24 hours from the time the tire goes on the rim to reach full strength.

    Like anything related to bicycle mechanics, there is a certain amount of feel involved with all this. With tires and/or rims that already have glue on them, less glue will need to be applied. The end result should be somewhere around 0.5mm of glue thickness (even up to 1mm is OK). Sounds like a lot, but it works. With Tufos you can get away with less because there is no seam on the underside.

    That's the extent of my knowledge. Argue all you want, but I have never rolled a tub since I started doing it this way.

    Please don't sue me
    GReain

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    cxmagazine dot com pitboss's Avatar
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    I love reading stuff like this - thanks bosshawg
    Deathlap - cyclocross, training, beer,...escape hatch

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    Quote Originally Posted by pitboss View Post
    I love reading stuff like this - thanks bosshawg
    bikedork!


    Ron

    Pot, kettle, you know the rest.

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    Man, 3 to 4 tubes per wheel? At 3.50 a tube, that's almost thirty dollars worth of glue.

    Has anyone had tires glued in a shop? How much did they charge, ballpark?

    I need to get these suckers on, pronto. First race is Saturday.

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    Quote Originally Posted by amorrow View Post
    Man, 3 to 4 tubes per wheel? At 3.50 a tube, that's almost thirty dollars worth of glue.

    Has anyone had tires glued in a shop? How much did they charge, ballpark?

    I need to get these suckers on, pronto. First race is Saturday.
    Hmmm. Maybe use your clinchers this weekend. I have no idea what a shop would charge, but find the one that sponsors a cross team and go there to get your tires glued.

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    d2p
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    did you buy the wheels at a local shop?

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    No, I bought them off craigslist. Ultegra hubs, Reflex ceramic rims, Tufo Tires. They're pretty sweet. If I don't get my act together, I will be rolling on the clinchers this weekend. But gluing should only be a three-day affair. With all the paint fumes. I'd be guaranteed go dreams at least.

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    Quote Originally Posted by amorrow View Post
    Man, 3 to 4 tubes per wheel? At 3.50 a tube, that's almost thirty dollars worth of glue.

    Has anyone had tires glued in a shop? How much did they charge, ballpark?

    I need to get these suckers on, pronto. First race is Saturday.
    You should really get one of the large cans of glue if you are gonna be doing any gluing. They are much cheaper than getting the small tubes.
    Get on a cross bike.... you'll like it ;)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ronsonic View Post
    bikedork!


    Ron

    Pot, kettle, you know the rest.
    no argument from me on this. info, right or wrong, is good to know
    Deathlap - cyclocross, training, beer,...escape hatch

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    Quote Originally Posted by briscoelab View Post
    You should really get one of the large cans of glue if you are gonna be doing any gluing. They are much cheaper than getting the small tubes.
    +1 and easier to use too. Get yourself a few plumbers flux brushes and some goof off to clean the brushes with. You just paint the glue on.

    I have used the tape/glue method before but this year I am going back to just straight Mastik One.

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