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  1. #1
    NW Georgia Mountains On Your Right's Avatar
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    Baby Powder on bike tubes???

    A guy I work with suggested putting your spare tube(s) in a zip lock baggie with a little baby powder inside. He says it will allow the tube to move inside the tire when you begin to inflate it and will eliminate pinch flats from twisted tubes during installation. It makes sense....Has anyone ever heard of or tried this?
    He who makes a beast of himself gets rid of the pain of being a man.

  2. #2
    Banned
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    Hi On Your Right-

    It is absolutely the correct technique. It reduces friction and maximizes tube/tire performance. That is exactly how I carry spare tubes in the pouch beneath my saddle.

    ~ Blue Jays ~

  3. #3
    Senior Member filtersweep's Avatar
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    I think it is a little high maintenance to go to that amount of effort. Obviously it doesn't hurt, but it isn't necessary.

  4. #4
    Senior Member ludeboy_77's Avatar
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    Tubes used to sold with talc on them back in the day. Baby powder is mostly talc and I use it when it is available, makes getting everything in place a bit easier, especially when the tire and tube are both new. by the way, you only need a little for it to be effective.

  5. #5
    NW Georgia Mountains On Your Right's Avatar
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    Wonder how much the powder that sticks to the tube weighs? That must be taken into consideration!!!
    He who makes a beast of himself gets rid of the pain of being a man.

  6. #6
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    I think Specialized tubes are still sold with a light layer of talc. It does make installing the tire a little easier. Any claims of reduced flats are a little dubious.

  7. #7
    Faster but still slow slowandsteady's Avatar
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    And it will be as soft as a baby's bottom...
    "Ride lots." -- Eddy Merckx

  8. #8
    Banned. vantassell's Avatar
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    I use flour rather than baby powder, but only because i don't have any baby powder

  9. #9
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    I do it when I replace a tire in my shop. It keeps the tubes from sticking to the tires. It's one of those things that I think is nice to do but I don't think that it's really very important.

  10. #10
    Dirt-riding heretic DrPete's Avatar
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    I just use a buttfor. It works fine.
    "Unless he was racing there was no way he could match my speed."

  11. #11
    Road, MTB and SS Rider spdrcr5's Avatar
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    the baby powder also keeps the tube from sticking to itself while in your saddle bag. If the tube sticks to itself it can actually put a small tear in it which will ruin the tube and defeat the purpose of having it in the first place.

    Been using baby powder on all of my tubes since I've been riding. That's the first thing I do when I buy new tubes, put them each into a zip lock bag with baby powder.
    Larry

  12. #12
    Al noisebeam's Avatar
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    I have an old bottle of talc based baby powder in my garage. It nice to put on, makes install a bit (but not measurably) easier. I put a few shakes in the tube bag under saddle too, keeps it from sticking in heat.

    I'd avoid organic powders (i.e. cornstarch, flour) some of which may attract moisture, clump or decompose.

    Its nice coming out of the garage with the clean fresh smell of BP instead of old chaingrease and solvent.

    Al

  13. #13
    I'm fine. Cromulent's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrPete
    I just use a buttfor. It works fine.
    Dear DrPete,

    What's a buttfor?


    Sincerely,

    Phil McCracken

  14. #14
    Dirt-riding heretic DrPete's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cromulent
    Dear DrPete,

    What's a buttfor?
    For pooping, silly.
    "Unless he was racing there was no way he could match my speed."

  15. #15
    Senior Member Terex's Avatar
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    I always powder and bag tubes. Reduces risk of damaging tube due to vibration against multi-tool, keys, etc., in your saddle bag. The "reduces flats" part is when you install on tight rims and want to prevent pinching the tube with edge of tire and/or tire iron. Reduction in friction allows tube to slip into place more easily than tube w/o talc. Mfgs have stopped using talc because of the concern re liability in asbestos litigation (small amts of asbestos can be in talc).

  16. #16
    Al noisebeam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Terex
    Mfgs have stopped using talc because of the concern re liability in asbestos litigation (small amts of asbestos can be in talc).
    So I have vintage Baby Powder! (it was probably bought new in the 80s)

    Al

  17. #17
    On the Move teterider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by On Your Right
    A guy I work with suggested putting your spare tube(s) in a zip lock baggie with a little baby powder inside. He says it will allow the tube to move inside the tire when you begin to inflate it and will eliminate pinch flats from twisted tubes during installation. It makes sense....Has anyone ever heard of or tried this?
    I didn't know anybody hadn't heard of this. Isn't this the normal standard practice before installing a tube.
    I usually pour a pile of powder in my hand, the run the tube through that hand to lightly coat the surface. Then install in tire, seat tire bead, inflate just a bit, then push back the tire bead to make sure the tube is up in the tire and isn't sticking out the side. Do this all the way around the tire on both sides.
    In 21 years of road riding I can count the number of flats on one hand. I guess I'm doing something right with tubes/tires.

    I usually don't carry the tube in a bag with powder though, but then again, with the number of times I use a spare tube to change a flat I suppose I have to worry about old age dry rot more than anything else.

  18. #18
    Faster but still slow slowandsteady's Avatar
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    Mfgs have stopped using talc because of the concern re liability in asbestos litigation (small amts of asbestos can be in talc).
    Not true. There is plenty of talcum powder on the market and it does not contain asbestos. Talc for home usage has no asbestos contamination. There was a study done by Johns Hopkins a few years back debunking this myth.
    "Ride lots." -- Eddy Merckx

  19. #19
    Dirt-riding heretic DrPete's Avatar
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    It's strange because latex surgical gloves usually have some kind of coating to make them less sticky, but the Michelin latex tubes I have are pretty slippery, almost like they're powdered. They go in easier than butyl, IMHO...
    "Unless he was racing there was no way he could match my speed."

  20. #20
    Senior Member Surferbruce's Avatar
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    cornstarch works too.

  21. #21
    Al noisebeam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Surferbruce
    cornstarch works too.
    It can at first, but if you've ever taken out a tube from a tire used in rain that used cornstarch you'll find it has turned browns and clumpy scabs have developed. Its also can be messy if you need to change a tube in the rain.
    Al

  22. #22
    I like beans eippo1's Avatar
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    I use Gold Bond because then I can throw a little on myself in cases of summer swamp ass.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrPete
    For pooping, silly.
    DAMN YOU! I just spewed milk all over my keyboard/monitor laughing.

    -D

  24. #24
    Dirt-riding heretic DrPete's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by derath
    DAMN YOU! I just spewed milk all over my keyboard/monitor laughing.

    -D
    Glad I could help.
    "Unless he was racing there was no way he could match my speed."

  25. #25
    * vpiuva's Avatar
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    Dr Pete, I can't believe someone fell for that. Good job.

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