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Old 05-12-14, 11:31 AM   #1
rdtompki
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First Tubeless Flat

Got my first actual flat yesterday, relatively big gash in the rear tire. I instantly detected the flat since the Stan's sealant was spraying on my right leg! Unfortunately, I just changed over from rear rack/trunk to under-saddle bag configuration and forgot to include a number of items. This was a very short recovery ride and I called my wife: first time in my life. I did try to inflate/seal with CO2, but had never had to use that particular inflator: another lesson learned.

I normally carry a very small kit which works to repair larger holes, somewhat similar on a much smaller scale to how we used to repair tubeless car tires. I removed the tire today and found I could easily, I mean really easily, get the tire off the rim with a single tire iron: good to know. I probably have 2500 miles on this tire so I'll go ahead and replace although I do think it's repairable.
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Old 05-12-14, 03:49 PM   #2
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That's always been one of my fears about going tubeless. Sorry to hear it wasn't fixable on the road, but thankfully you had a Rescue Ranger to help you out!

Would it otherwise have been "boot-able?"

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Old 05-12-14, 07:35 PM   #3
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That's always been one of my fears about going tubeless. Sorry to hear it wasn't fixable on the road, but thankfully you had a Rescue Ranger to help you out!

Would it otherwise have been "boot-able?"

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I'f I'd had even a single tire lever I could have put in a tube (which I did have). I'm going to buy a second of those small repair kits and throw a few tire levers in my under-saddle bag. My second issue was lack of familiarity with the the specific CO2 inflater in that kit; I don't believe the bead actually separated from the tire so even my hand pump would have done the job.
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Old 05-12-14, 07:43 PM   #4
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I have a set of 3 Park Tool nested plastic tire levers as well as the tire tool that is on the IB-3 multi-tool in my underseat bag. They have gotten a few "field tests" too, so I can attest to the good feeling I get when I have a flat and open the bag to find those little darlings waiting to save the ride for me. They both are inexpensive, several manufacturers for them out there. I have a CO2 and a few extra cartridges but I am seriously considering one of the hybrid mini-pumps out. I've had to use the old dollar bill boot for a gash, it is a handy trick to know. Sorry you had to make the call, we've all been there, well most of us have

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Old 05-13-14, 06:50 AM   #5
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I have a set of 3 Park Tool nested plastic tire levers as well as the tire tool that is on the IB-3 multi-tool in my underseat bag. They have gotten a few "field tests" too, so I can attest to the good feeling I get when I have a flat and open the bag to find those little darlings waiting to save the ride for me. They both are inexpensive, several manufacturers for them out there. I have a CO2 and a few extra cartridges but I am seriously considering one of the hybrid mini-pumps out. I've had to use the old dollar bill boot for a gash, it is a handy trick to know. Sorry you had to make the call, we've all been there, well most of us have

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Bill, I normally have all that "stuff". Of course you can't boot a tubeless tire!. Later today I'll post a picture of the tiny kit that can be used to plug a larger hole in a tubeless; normal punctures, thorns and such, you don't even notice. I did have CO2, a tool kit, a tube: everything I needed except a tire lever. Funny thing is that because of the stories of tubeless tires being so hard to mount and dismount I had bought one (1) fancy yellow tool which I had carried in my other bag, the other 10 cent levers sitting in a tool drawer. In reality the Hutchinson Sector/Velocity rim combo turns out to be very easy to manipulate.

There are a number of cycling mistakes you only make once: forgetting cycling shorts, leaving helmet at a Starbucks (wife), FDGB on tandem, forgetting water bottle , forgetting tire levers. Unfortunately, as we get older we tend to forget what we've previously forgotten.
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Old 05-13-14, 10:44 AM   #6
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...I've had to use the old dollar bill boot for a gash, it is a handy trick to know. Sorry you had to make the call, we've all been there, well most of us have
A mechanic told me in a pinch you could use some leaves from a tree. Now that's a survivalist.
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Old 05-13-14, 10:57 AM   #7
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Back in the 1970s' my then-girlfriend-now-wife and I wanted really good bikes so we bought Mercier racing bikes, though naively we wanted them for touring, and they came with sew-up tires. I presume those are the same as tubeless. So we carried full self-supported loads on our various tours in Michigan and Ontario, without too much trouble.

When we did our cross-country honeymoon, we brought six spare tires. It seemed we would get a flat tire about every three days, just as the sticky glue-grime wore off our hands. Twice on the tour we had to ditch the bikes in a motel and hitchhike to a city to buy more tires (in Flagstaff, AZ and Pueblo, CO), losing two otherwise rest days, plus all the delays and time expended fixing flats.

We switched wheels soon after arriving in Boston.
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Old 05-13-14, 12:55 PM   #8
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What brand of tubeless tires are you using?
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Old 05-13-14, 01:01 PM   #9
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. . . they came with sew-up tires. I presume those are the same as tubeless.

Minor clarification - Your sew ups were "tubular" tires. They had a tube sewn into the tire. Tubeless tires, as the name implies, have no tube - they're similar to car tires. They require a specific rim/tire combination, along with a sealant that needs to be periodically replaced (or so I hear).
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Old 05-13-14, 03:06 PM   #10
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Could you carry a tube with you and put it in the tire to get back home instead of trying to patch it?
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Old 05-13-14, 09:08 PM   #11
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Could you carry a tube with you and put it in the tire to get back home instead of trying to patch it?
Of course. I had a tube. What I didn't have was a tire lever. If I'd known how easy it is to remove my tires I could have used my multi-tool. I'f I'd had my little fix kit I could have been on my way in 5 minutes without even taking the tire off the rim. The kit doesn't contain patches; it contains a very tiny version of the "plugs" that we used to put in tubeless car tires. You can patch a tubeless tire from the inside, but not on the road; requires 2-3 treatments with something like brake cleaner to get the rubber to accept a patch.
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Old 05-16-14, 06:31 AM   #12
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The Stan's rim tape was slightly damaged by the flat. Two evenings ago I replaced the rim tape, mounted a new tire, inflated, deflated, added sealant. This was a completely painless process. Didn't even need to use tire levers to mount the tire. Took the bike on a 12 mile test spin and by some miracle the tire stayed inflated.

With regard to mounting difficulty tubeless tires are apparently no different than their tubed-tire counterparts. Some tire/wheel combinations area bear, others less so. BTW, I'm not running tubeless-specific rims (Velocity A23).
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