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  1. #1
    Cat 5 field stuffer bbeasley's Avatar
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    Would you ride on a flat tire if you had to?

    Recently I've been on a couple of rides, with a new group, where one of the guys flatted and just rode back to the start. In both cases we were between 2 and 4 miles out. Both times it was the rear tire and both were completely flat. One was a clincher and one tubular if that matters. The rider with the clincher had a long rip in the tire, the tubular rider was offered a spare tire but declined it. Both bikes were fairly nice road bikes and this group averages 18-20 MPH. The only reason I mention speed is these guys seemed like experienced cyclists, at least more than I am. In one instance another rider offered to go back and return with a vehicle to SAG the guy in, this was declined.

    Doesn't this tear up your rims? Is it dependent on rider weight, I don't remember how big these guys were? I've never seen this before and am wondering if it's an okay option to consider?

  2. #2
    Senior Member JTGraphics's Avatar
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    No not a chance I'd ride a flat tire!
    And can I ask why it just wasn't fixed on the spot.
    It may not be fancy but it gets me were I need to go.
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  3. #3
    Senior Member bikemig's Avatar
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    Sure but only on the front and only if desperate and only if you're prepared to probably buy a new wheel after your ride. I've done it on the back for short periods as well (with the same caveats) by lifting my rear end of the saddle.

    As for why, well sometimes it is raining like heck, your patches don't hold, or you get multiple flats, or your cell phone isn't working and even if it is your honey isn't going to pick you up, etc. There are memorable rides were just getting home is all that matters.

  4. #4
    Optically Corrected KLiNCK's Avatar
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    No. It will ruin the tire and the rim.
    "Succeeding....despite best intentions"

  5. #5
    Senior Member Seattle Forrest's Avatar
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    Depends on what "had to" means. In this case, it sounds like neither one really had to. Walking two miles really isn't a big deal at all (come on, we're people who enjoy exercising and have strong legs!) and this could vindicate my preference for walkable SPD shoes. I put a hole in the sidewall once, my spare tube worked briefly, then I was stranded. Walked a couple miles to the nearest town before I was on my way again.

    On a tubular though? I wouldn't think twice about riding it flat if the sealant and compressed air didn't fix it.
    Don't believe everything you think.

  6. #6
    Senior Member escarpment's Avatar
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    You mention one was a tubular and one was a clincher. That makes a HUGE difference. You can ride a tubular flat for many miles, I have done so out of necessity. If you do that with a clincher you run a much higher risk of ruining the tire and the rim.

    And a front flat is pretty much a no go.

  7. #7
    Tour De French Fries Elduderino2412's Avatar
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    no way i would do that. Maybe they were just embarassed to let anyone know they didn't know how to fix it.

    On a side note: Is there any good places to ride in hammond? Hilly like the tour of tangipahoa route, but w/shoulders or little traffic.

  8. #8
    Throw the stick!!!! LowCel's Avatar
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    On a tubular, only 2-4 miles, sure. On a clincher, nope.
    I may be fat but I'm slow enough to make up for it.

  9. #9
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    Why risk a rim over your pride? I would only do it if its a serious safety issue (ie no cell signal, no traffic, etc), otherwise SAG.
    Then again, I've walked a half-mile so that I could change a tire at home.

    In the case of the clincher, it sounds like his tire was toast. Personally, I've taken the SAG in that situation, but its his rims...

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    sure

    Done it too many times. Not often, but once is too many and I have been riding for forty years. I can speak with the authorative voice of experience. And like OP said, they looked like experienced riders.

    The handling is sometimes dicey and likely to ruin the tube. Never ruined a rim - worst as been minor abrasion of rim edge . Not sure on tires - probably. Just ride at a slow pace. Certainly less than 15 kph, 10 is better. Try to avoid anything that looks remotely like a pothole, although e.g. things like expansion strips won't do damage.

    Why? Fecal matter happens. I don't prepare for more than 2 flats. Yesterday I had to start riding a flat back home about 10 miles when I found that my second spare tube only had a short valve and I couldn't get my pump to seal with medium deep section rims. Am older, single, and enough of a recluse that I totally fail to understand the need to be connected to my social network (nonexistant) 24/7, although I can certainly appreciate the convenience for emergencies and not so emergencies (honey, what flavor pizza do you want?). Besides, I can't afford multiple $100 fees for cell and/or cable. Will get some extenders or even just presta -> schraeder adapters to put in my bike bag.

    Yesterday, I only had to ride less than 2 miles before I found somebody mowing a lawn. I was going to ask for some duck tape to try to limp home on one of my flat tubes, but was offered a ride into town which I gratefully took. They needed gas for lawn mower anyway.

    Heloise hints #22 : When you need to hitch a ride, take your front wheel off and carry your bike. Doesn't matter what's wrong; carry your front wheel. Makes it obvious you need help.

  11. #11
    Cat 5 field stuffer bbeasley's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JTGraphics View Post
    No not a chance I'd ride a flat tire!
    And can I ask why it just wasn't fixed on the spot.
    The clincher flat ripped the tire and no one had a spare, it was too big for booting. On the tubular, I know the guy did not have a spare tire other than that I don't know.

  12. #12
    Cat 5 field stuffer bbeasley's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Elduderino2412 View Post
    no way i would do that. Maybe they were just embarassed to let anyone know they didn't know how to fix it.

    On a side note: Is there any good places to ride in hammond? Hilly like the tour of tangipahoa route, but w/shoulders or little traffic.
    We ride all around the Tour de Tangi regularly. I go with both the Baton Rouge and NOLA clubs. We''ve got nice smooth roads but shoulders, not so much. If I lived in BR, I'd just as soon head up to St. Francisville with BRBC.

  13. #13
    Senior Member bikemig's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by escarpment View Post
    You mention one was a tubular and one was a clincher. That makes a HUGE difference. You can ride a tubular flat for many miles, I have done so out of necessity. If you do that with a clincher you run a much higher risk of ruining the tire and the rim.

    And a front flat is pretty much a no go.
    One of the best rides I have ever done was a 60 miler in pouring rain with 2 buddies. One guy flatted deep into the ride. We wasted all our tubes and no patch would hold. It's not as if we didn't know what we were doing. One was a cat 2 racer and all three were experienced bike mechanics. One of us had clearly angered the local gods or something but it was a great, great day to ride the bike. So the guy rode the bike home around 20 miles with a front flat. He knew exactly what he was doing to that wheel. Some days are too perfect not to destroy your bike gear . . .

  14. #14
    Senior Member bikemig's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bbeasley View Post
    We ride all around the Tour de Tangi regularly. I go with both the Baton Rouge and NOLA clubs. We''ve got nice smooth roads but shoulders, not so much. If I lived in BR, I'd just as soon head up to St. Francisville with BRBC.
    Is the BR bike club still doing its tour over Thanksgiving? There is some terrific riding north of Baton Rouge . . . much much better than pretty much anything north of New Orleans.

  15. #15
    Tour De French Fries Elduderino2412's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bbeasley View Post
    We ride all around the Tour de Tangi regularly. I go with both the Baton Rouge and NOLA clubs. We''ve got nice smooth roads but shoulders, not so much. If I lived in BR, I'd just as soon head up to St. Francisville with BRBC.
    i ride in st francisville sometimes(somewhat close to my office). Just looking for some different scenery to ride.

  16. #16
    I'm doing it wrong. RJM's Avatar
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    Nope, no way would I do it.
    "...this place is to trolling as salt licks are to deer hunting." - 3alarmer

  17. #17
    Senior Member
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    this is why I carry a cell phone. i'd be to PO'd to be riding and I'd call the truck.
    Don't like your job? There's a support group for that. It's callled EVERYONE and they meet at the bar!!!

  18. #18
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    I wouldn't even know how to do it. Won't the tire come off the rim and start flopping around?

    I tried to ride on a flat the other day with a kid trailer and that's what happened.
    I don't even use the offensive term "Fred." -- Sheldon "All Cyclists Are My Friends" Brown (1944-2008)

  19. #19
    Senior Member JTGraphics's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bbeasley View Post
    The clincher flat ripped the tire and no one had a spare, it was too big for booting. On the tubular, I know the guy did not have a spare tire other than that I don't know.
    I've had 1" rip clean thru tire and side wall I use a $1 bill folded a few times place over the rip to keep tube in side tire, pump up with enough pressure to ride and rode 10 miles back.
    Dollar bills are great for temp booting.
    In either case I would not ride call for pickup if I had to.
    It may not be fancy but it gets me were I need to go.
    http://www.jtgraphics.net/cyclist_bicycles.htm

  20. #20
    You Know!? For Kids! jsharr's Avatar
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    I have taken the walk of shame once when I lived in Deep Ellum. Walking through downtown Dallas in bibshorts and cycling shoes on a weekday was fun.
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    Quote Originally Posted by colorider View Post
    Phobias are for irrational fears. Fear of junk ripping badgers is perfectly rational. Those things are nasty.

  21. #21
    pan y agua merlinextraligh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by escarpment View Post
    You mention one was a tubular and one was a clincher. That makes a HUGE difference. You can ride a tubular flat for many miles, I have done so out of necessity. If you do that with a clincher you run a much higher risk of ruining the tire and the rim.

    And a front flat is pretty much a no go.
    One advantage of tubulars is that you can ride them flat.

    I've finished a stage of a stage race on a flat front tubular. Started going down with about 2km to go. If I waited for the wheel truck, i'd have lost a lot of time, as it was I got same time as the pack.

    I've also ridden a flat rear clincher that was unrepairable a couple of miles back to the car, at a bit more than walking speed. The tire's already toast at that point so it doesn't matter, but you do have to be very careful not to mess up the rim.
    You could fall off a cliff and die.
    You could get lost and die.
    You could hit a tree and die.
    OR YOU COULD STAY HOME AND FALL OFF THE COUCH AND DIE.

  22. #22
    pan y agua merlinextraligh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JTGraphics View Post
    .
    In either case I would not ride call for pickup if I had to.

    Death before sag. If it's physically possible to get home, I'm not calling for a ride.
    You could fall off a cliff and die.
    You could get lost and die.
    You could hit a tree and die.
    OR YOU COULD STAY HOME AND FALL OFF THE COUCH AND DIE.

  23. #23
    rugged individualist wphamilton's Avatar
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    I'd stuff the tire with something before riding it flat.

  24. #24
    Uber Goober StephenH's Avatar
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    I was talking to a guy one time, he told about how they had blown a radiator hose 5 miles out of town, but a storm was blowing up, it looked like tornadoes, so they drove on into town and ruined the engine. I woulda sat through all kinds of storms before I burned my engine up getting into town. So let's just say some people don't think logically. Or maybe it's just different values.
    "be careful this rando stuff is addictive and dan's the 'pusher'."

  25. #25
    pan y agua merlinextraligh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wphamilton View Post
    I'd stuff the tire with something before riding it flat.
    I know that works on MTB tires, where you have a fair amount of volume to work with.

    Have you done it on a road bike tire? I'm thinking it wouldn't work very well on a 23mm tire.
    You could fall off a cliff and die.
    You could get lost and die.
    You could hit a tree and die.
    OR YOU COULD STAY HOME AND FALL OFF THE COUCH AND DIE.

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