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Old 10-22-06, 04:59 PM   #1
Carusoswi
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Flats ended ride

Half way through my ride today, I hear that pssssssssssssssssseeeeeew as the air escapes from my rear tire. A little annoyed, a pulled over and went about changing to my spare tube. I am very careful to brace the head of my pump against something solid (in this case, a curb) so that the pump and valve are held very steady with no strain on the area where the valve attaches to the tube.

Care or not, half way to acceptable pressure, the valve stem lets go.

I only had one spare along today, so, now I'm out of business.

Had to phone the house for the Mrs. to come out and fetch me.

Instead of burning 30 miles worth of calories, we through the bike on the rack, went to a nice restaurant, and had a nice brunch together.

I suppose I can't blame my tires for the valve-stem failure, but, I think I may have to say goodbye to these Schwalbe Stelvios. I am having just too many flats.

There was no puncture in the tube or tire - I'm guessing that the tube worked its way through a previous puncture hole that I had patched from the inside using a stick on patch. The surface of that patch was broken, so, I'm guessing that pressure on the tube forced tube material into the tire opening and eventually caused it to fail.

I have had more flats in the year since mounting these Stelvios than what I experienced in three years using Armadillos.

The Stelvios are more fun to ride, but not when the flat every other week.

These Selvios are supposed to be puncture resistant - but I cannot say I've had great luck with them - and the punctures I have experienced went right through the Kevlar band.

Ok, I'll stop whining, now.

Caruso
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Old 10-22-06, 05:12 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carusoswi
Half way through my ride today, I hear that pssssssssssssssssseeeeeew as the air escapes from my rear tire.
Caruso
Maybe you aren't pedaling fast enough - your cadence is too slow?











































Just a joke, there.

Yes, I keep plodding along on those Armadillos for exactly the same reasons.

Sorry about your ride, but the brunch sounded great.

Last edited by DnvrFox; 10-22-06 at 07:15 PM.
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Old 10-22-06, 05:39 PM   #3
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If you have a hole in your patch, it may be that you didn't get the flat-causing whatever-it-was out of your tire the last time you had a flat. Try wiping around the inside of the tire with a rag. Be careful of your fingers! I bet you'll find a snag in there somewhere. That said, I don't like Stelvios. I've gone through 5 of them, and none of them wore out. They all failed from carcass failure of one type or another - aneurisms, broken cords, and once when the rubber on the shoulder peeled off in strips.
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Old 10-22-06, 05:55 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlazingPedals
....... Try wiping around the inside of the tire with a rag. Be careful of your fingers! I bet you'll find a snag in there somewhere.
May I suggest throwing a few cotton balls in your underseat bag for this very purpose?
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Old 10-22-06, 07:10 PM   #5
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I am very careful to brace the head of my pump against something solid (in this case, a curb) so that the pump and valve are held very steady with no strain on the area where the valve attaches to the tube.
Not sure why this is so important . . . care to expand for a newb?
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Old 10-22-06, 07:35 PM   #6
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Your thread hits a sensitive spot with me. I can go for one year without a flat doing over 5000 miles. Now I am totally out of it IF I get a flat, No experience. I have actually rotated tires from front to back just so I have some experience in changing a tire. I went on a XC tour of 3000 mile with only three flats. Every flat was a disaster because of my inexperience with fixing a flat.
I went on a recent simple tour in Ohio trails. Four flats in 50 miles. Why? The wheel rim was nicked somehow and punctured the inner tubes. Needed a file to fix it.
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Old 10-23-06, 11:09 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by OrangeOkie
Not sure why this is so important . . . care to expand for a newb?
I find that, if I try to hold the pump by hand only, I either cannot get enough pressure in the tire, or I the strength required to operate such a small pump causes me to lose control of the pump sufficiently that I can wiggle it around and damage the tube where the valve attaches.

I have worked around this (quite nicely, I might add) by laying the tire across a curb (part of the tire rests on the street, the section where the valve is located rests on the curb) so that the curb functions as a brace so that I can hold the pump rock steady as I push down to get sufficient pressure in the tire.

Aside from that method or being Samson (with his hair - and, believe me, my hair is a lost cause - or just lost), I don't see how anyone can use one of those hand-held pumps to get sufficient pressure into a high-pressure road tire.

That's it.

Caruso
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Old 10-23-06, 11:20 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by will dehne
Your thread hits a sensitive spot with me. I can go for one year without a flat doing over 5000 miles. Now I am totally out of it IF I get a flat, No experience.
I am going to start FU (flat university). I will offer instruction leading to a doctorate in FF (fixin' flats), LOL.

Keep riding and you may graduate on a full scholarship!

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Old 10-23-06, 11:29 AM   #9
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[QUOTE=DnvrFox]Maybe you aren't pedaling fast enough - your cadence is too slow?

Or, maybe my super long gear selection causes me to mash the pedals with such downward force that my Stelvios cannot take the pressure.

Actually, after getting home and having a chance to inspect the insides of the tires, I have concluded that my initial assumption was probably correct. There are one or two punctures through the tire casing that I had patched from the inside using those stick on tube repair kits. I discovered that the patches had developed holes (either something punctured the patch from outside the tire, or pressure of the tube from inside eventually pushed a hole through the patch, in which case, the tube most certainly would have failed almost immediately.

I cut new patches from the tube with the failed valve connection and glued them to the inside of the tire with the permanent rubber glue from one of my old repair kits. I'm going to give that tire one more chance. I'm guessing that this should fix it.

Haven't had a chance to evaluate whether or not I'll feel the effects of the tube patches when the tire rotates. If I feel it and it is too annoying, I'll pitch the tire.

Caruso
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Old 10-23-06, 12:01 PM   #10
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There is always a gear-head solution. Look at a Topeak Road Morph pump.
It uses a rubber hose to the valve. Besides that, they actually work much
like a floor pump.
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Old 10-23-06, 01:53 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by head_wind
Look at a Topeak Road Morph pump.
+1
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Old 10-23-06, 02:37 PM   #12
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I have just about given up on mini-pumps, and I am back to full-length frame-fit or peg-fit pumps on every bike. My favorites are a Blackburn and a couple of Zefal HP-Xs, although my Mt. Zefal works pretty well for the mountain bike.
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Old 10-23-06, 02:40 PM   #13
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Maybe you got the wrong schwalbes. Don't know which tire you got, but

stelvio lg: 6 speed, 2 protection, 185 gm
stelvio plus: 3 speed, 6 protection, 320 gm
marathon plus: 3 speed, 6 protection, 580 gm
marathon racer: 6 speed, 4 protection, 370 gm
marathon hs 308: 4 speed, 5 protection, 510 gm

I haven't used the stelvio's yet as my rims won't take them, but I have no complaints about the racer. The only problem with it is it doesn't come narrower than 700x30. If you're willing to sacrifice speed, you might consider the stelvio plus instead of the tire you were using.

Good luck, I hate flats, really hate them. I'll sacrifice some speed for protection.
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Old 10-23-06, 02:59 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by head_wind
There is always a gear-head solution. Look at a Topeak Road Morph pump.
It uses a rubber hose to the valve. Besides that, they actually work much
like a floor pump.
I agree, the Topeak Road Morph is a fantastic pump. I've had great results with mine.

I also once had a problem using an "internal" stick-on, self adhesive type patch (from Park Tool). They just don't have the tensil strength to plug the hole correctly and the tube can wiggle its way out to the road. Perhaps a glue-on one might work better, but you could also use a boot made from a piece of an old tire or a piece of Tyvek material.

If you continue to have problems with the valve getting damaged as you pump it up, some things I've found helpful include to be sure to use that little valve nut to help secure the valve so it doesn't cock at such a severe angle and tear, and also you can take an old inner tube and make a sort of donut to add a protective layer between the base of the valve and the (rim) valve hole. I don't know why, but a lot of guys just don't use that little nut. You may also want to file the valve hole clean if it's a bit rough. You can also put an extra layer of rim tape around the hole, too. There's a lot of pressure pushing the relatively thin tube against the (possible sharp) edge of that small hole. Just my 2 cents...
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Old 10-23-06, 03:14 PM   #15
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Carusoswi: I've had the same experience of putting the spare on only to have the base of the valve stem fail on numerous occasions. Personally, I think they could be made better than they are, and I know I wouldn't be "mildly" annoyed. I'd be pi$$ed.... So, I admire you composure. I was able to reduce the incidence of this type of failure by making two modifications. You may find them helpful.

First, I no longer buy the ultra light weight tubes.

Second, I slid the tire rim tape so that a solid section is covering the valve stem hole. Then I put a small "x" slit in the part of the tape. Hence when I push the valve stem throught the opening, the base is protected just a bit more by the rim tape and the fit is a bit tighter, keeping the stem from moving around so much.
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Old 10-23-06, 03:25 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carusoswi
I don't see how anyone can use one of those hand-held pumps to get sufficient pressure into a high-pressure road tire.
my Topeak Mountain Morph pump has a fold-down lever at its base that will just hold part of my foot thereby stabilizing it. And the pump handle itself folds out so that my hand has something to grip when pumping. I can get 100 psi into a tire without too much trouble. That maddening inevitable slip of pump/hand/connection that used to happen when trying to hold the whole thing in my hand doesn't happen any more.
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Old 10-23-06, 03:45 PM   #17
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1) Get a good CO2 inflater. Much easier and quicker than a pump, and you won't have to worry about ripping off the valve stem.

2) Carry some glueless patches (Park brand is excellent). If you ever get a second flat, or blow the first patch job, they can get you home.

re: "I'm guessing that the tube worked its way through a previous puncture hole that I had patched from the inside using a stick on patch."

What do you mean "patched from the inside using a stick on patch"? It sounds like you applied the stick on patch to your tire!? FWIW, they go on your tube, just like regular glued patches.

As for the problem...I doubt it's the glueless patch that's failing. More likely you've still got something in the tire, or a spoke that's poking through the rim strip. Or, your tire had a "cut" instead of a small puncture. For small cuts, you'll need to boot it with something from the inside. For larger cuts (> ~1/4"), you'll need a new tire.
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Old 10-23-06, 04:00 PM   #18
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I use a Zefal frame pump, and yea, you have to be a bit careful on the valve stems. Its best to use the locknut to pump up the tire, then back it off some so you can see if the tube has shifted. If you leave the nut tight and the tube shifts, it will tear the tube on the stretched side. I always carry at lease one tube plus a patch kit. On longer rides I carry two tube. BTW, the CO2 inflators are nice, but how much more crap does this throw-away society need to put into landfills?
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Old 10-23-06, 07:14 PM   #19
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"my Topeak Mountain Morph pump has a fold-down lever at its base that will just hold part of my foot thereby stabilizing it. And the pump handle itself folds out so that my hand has something to grip when pumping. I can get 100 psi into a tire without too much trouble."

+1 on the Mountain Morph!
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Old 10-23-06, 09:26 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Old Hammer Boy
I
If you continue to have problems with the valve getting damaged as you pump it up, some things I've found helpful include to be sure to use that little valve nut to help secure the valve so it doesn't cock at such a severe angle and tear, and also you can take an old inner tube and make a sort of donut to add a protective layer between the base of the valve and the (rim) valve hole. I don't know why, but a lot of guys just don't use that little nut. You may also want to file the valve hole clean if it's a bit rough. You can also put an extra layer of rim tape around the hole, too. There's a lot of pressure pushing the relatively thin tube against the (possible sharp) edge of that small hole. Just my 2 cents...
Here's the scoop on the nut and valve cover on presta valves. If you use a sew up tubular and have a flat, it's possible for the tubular to come off the rim and leave the tire flapping where it's held on by the nut or valve cap. I used to think someone was trying to save weight and wind resistance, but it mostly turns out to be tradition for most of us.
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Old 10-24-06, 04:16 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HiYoSilver
Maybe you got the wrong schwalbes. Don't know which tire you got, but

stelvio lg: 6 speed, 2 protection, 185 gm
stelvio plus: 3 speed, 6 protection, 320 gm
marathon plus: 3 speed, 6 protection, 580 gm
marathon racer: 6 speed, 4 protection, 370 gm
marathon hs 308: 4 speed, 5 protection, 510 gm

I haven't used the stelvio's yet as my rims won't take them, but I have no complaints about the racer. The only problem with it is it doesn't come narrower than 700x30. If you're willing to sacrifice speed, you might consider the stelvio plus instead of the tire you were using.

Good luck, I hate flats, really hate them. I'll sacrifice some speed for protection.
I had the same problem for a while, flats every ride. I asked the forum members the best tire for the job and was recommended the Schwalbe Marathon Plus. They were a ***** to get on my rim, but I haven't had a flat (from punctures) in over 600 miles now.
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Old 10-24-06, 03:49 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SSP
1) What do you mean "patched from the inside using a stick on patch"? It sounds like you applied the stick on patch to your tire!? FWIW, they go on your tube, just like regular glued patches.
Quote:
Originally Posted by SSP
As for the problem...I doubt it's the glueless patch that's failing. More likely you've still got something in the tire, or a spoke that's poking through the rim strip. Or, your tire had a "cut" instead of a small puncture. For small cuts, you'll need to boot it with something from the inside. For larger cuts (> ~1/4"), you'll need a new tire.
SSP, LOL, you actually answered your own question here. Yes, I used the glueless patch on the tire . . . to seal a couple of small punctures. I did this one weekend around six weeks ago when I experienced two non-valve related tube failures while riding my favorite road route. I accepted the first as some aberrant unexplainable puncture. But, the second (a brand new tube, BTW) made me suspicious that some small punctures were to blame. Fortunately, on that ride, I had two spare tubes with me, so I used the second spare, but, also used two glueless patches to seal the inside of the tire where there were two small punctures – my thinking was that the tube when under pressure was working its way into those puncture holes where it would then get either get pinched or make its way to the outside surface of the tire – either way would cause it to fail.

That I’ve ridden six weeks without a flat in that tire seems to confirm my suspicions. Additionally, when I examined my glueless patches after Saturday’s flat, one of them had “broken” right over the spot of the puncture in my tire.

I believe I have done exactly as you and others have suggested by “booting” my tire. I cut two small sections out of the tube with the bad valve. I glued those sections to the inside of my tire to cover those two small punctures.

I believe I may detect a slight bump when riding on that tire now, although, it may be my mind playing games with me. So far (and it’s too soon to tell for sure), the new tube is holding up.

I know that you offered your reply to be helpful, but, I have to admit that I got a chuckle when you assumed I didn’t know that those patches go on the tube, not the tire, LOL. I’m a little slow, SSP (really slow sometimes, LOL), but not quite that slow.

Anyhow, your advice about the boot was right on – I dare the tube to sneak through my “new” boots!!

Thanks for the reply, SSP.

Caruso
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Old 10-24-06, 03:50 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by centexwoody
my Topeak Mountain Morph pump has a fold-down lever at its base that will just hold part of my foot thereby stabilizing it. And the pump handle itself folds out so that my hand has something to grip when pumping. I can get 100 psi into a tire without too much trouble. That maddening inevitable slip of pump/hand/connection that used to happen when trying to hold the whole thing in my hand doesn't happen any more.
Ok, you've convinced me. I'm going to have a look at those Topeak pumps. Will if fit inside a normal trunk type bike bag (also Topeak)?

Caruso
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Old 10-24-06, 03:55 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NOS88
First, I no longer buy the ultra light weight tubes.

Second, I slid the tire rim tape so that a solid section is covering the valve stem hole. Then I put a small "x" slit in the part of the tape. Hence when I push the valve stem throught the opening, the base is protected just a bit more by the rim tape and the fit is a bit tighter, keeping the stem from moving around so much.
Nos: I've tried both types of tubes and have experienced valve failures on both. I should also note that all my valve failures did not occur as an apparent result of stress while pumping. Most of these types of failures have occurred while just riding the bike. I tend to agree with you that they are the result of weakness in design as much as anything. I make certain my stem is straight (perpendicular to the rim hole), and try to make certain that there is plenty of "insulation" around the edge of the hole.

I haven't tried your rim tape trick, but will give it a try.

Thanks.

Caruso
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Old 10-24-06, 04:16 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HiYoSilver
Maybe you got the wrong schwalbes. Don't know which tire you got, but

stelvio lg: 6 speed, 2 protection, 185 gm
stelvio plus: 3 speed, 6 protection, 320 gm
marathon plus: 3 speed, 6 protection, 580 gm
marathon racer: 6 speed, 4 protection, 370 gm
marathon hs 308: 4 speed, 5 protection, 510 gm

I haven't used the stelvio's yet as my rims won't take them, but I have no complaints about the racer. The only problem with it is it doesn't come narrower than 700x30. If you're willing to sacrifice speed, you might consider the stelvio plus instead of the tire you were using.

Good luck, I hate flats, really hate them. I'll sacrifice some speed for protection.
My tires are labeled as follows:

Schwalbe Stelvio [Front/Rear] Evolution - size 700 x 23
They have a Kevlar belt to provide puncture resistance. Recommended inflation range is 85 - 145 psi. I run them at 140 - I know that's high, but it really should not contribute to flatting except, as I've mentioned, when there are puncture holes in the tire. If you've ever had your rim tape a little too thin, you'll notice bumps on your tube when you change it out. Those are from the stretch that occurs along the spoke holes when the tube is under full pressure. I believe the same effect is occurring in my little puncture holes - except that there is nothing to keep the tube from eventually being pushed right through the tire. The high pressure that I prefer would obviously contribute to this.

I plan to monitor the performance of my tires subsequent to my "boot" job and see if it makes a difference.

I rode these tires over some really heavy gravel (the type used around construction projects - it's not so much gravel as course crushed stone) and I'm guessing I picked up some cuts/punctures that have caused the two punctures that I suspect are giving me trouble now.

If you are familiar with my particular tire, I'd be curious to know what you (or anyone else) has to say about it (yea or nay or in between).

Again, thanks to you and everyone for your helpful replies on this thread - keeps me coming back to the BF!!

Caruso
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