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Singlespeed & Fixed Gear "I still feel that variable gears are only for people over forty-five. Isn't it better to triumph by the strength of your muscles than by the artifice of a derailer? We are getting soft...As for me, give me a fixed gear!"-- Henri Desgrange (31 January 1865 - 16 August 1940)

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Old 05-25-10, 11:12 PM   #1
bike manhattan
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Goodbye Thumbs...

Jesus.

Got some new tires and tubes today. My old Armadillos had seen better days (3 years of daily riding). Put on some Gatorskins today. Basically tore all the skin off of my thumbs putting them on. My right thumb is especially gnarly, first layer of skin tore off completely, got a ****load of grease underneath the wound. Am I going to die? Are my thumbs no more? Why is changing tires such a *****? Should I wear gloves next time? Looking for answers here hipsters....
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Old 05-25-10, 11:16 PM   #2
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Are you taking them off correctly? are these clincher tires?
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Old 05-25-10, 11:18 PM   #3
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Get yourself a tire bead jack.
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Old 05-25-10, 11:20 PM   #4
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Took them off with a bike tire tool (little plastic thing). Putting them on is how i ****ed up my thumbs.

My understanding is that it is best done by hand, working the tire into the rim. The last little bit is the pain.

Anyway, got a whole ****************load of grease under my thumb wound.

Will I live another day?
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Old 05-25-10, 11:20 PM   #5
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Get yourself a tire bead jack.
Whats that?
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Old 05-25-10, 11:20 PM   #6
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I had to remount my Gatorskin after getting a flat today. They're a more difficult tire to mount, especially the Duraskins, but it wasn't too bad. Make sure when you roll the tire on that you slide the bead ALONG the rim, not into the rim. It helps to not hold the wheel vertically in front of you but hold it horizontally so that you're pushing "up" the rim. Try putting it on your lap or holding it against your chest if it helps. I find pushing directly along the surface of the rim ('up' the rim) especially helps with the last bit of bead that needs to be mounted.

And don't tell me you're serious about getting grease under your skin. You haven't rubbed all of the dermis yet, only the squamous epithelial keratinocytes on the surface of your skin, which are dead, by the way. Just clean it, dress it and bandage it if it hurts. People have lived through worse. I once accidentally tore all the skin off of my wrist on chainring teeth. And I mean all of it. Required a few stitches and you could see cartilage underneath. I'm lucky my hand still works.

I've had worse biking injuries, too. I'm missing my two front teeth at the moment. Bike accident when I was 8. Need a block bone graft now.

Last edited by cleanupinaisle3; 05-25-10 at 11:24 PM.
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Old 05-25-10, 11:27 PM   #7
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Thanks for the tips cleanupinaisle3. Also thanks to Fungazi. I googled tire bead jack and it seems like a good tool to have.

I was all good putting the tires on, especially the first one, half way through the second one though I looked and my thumbs were ****ing bleeding. Eventually a bunch of grease (which burned) got in the open wound. I could not help but to think there is an easier way. Lots of washing and neosporin and I think I will survive.

New tires are great....took a short ride today, way quick. Looking forward to doing a nice long one tomorrow.
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Old 05-26-10, 12:10 AM   #8
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haha yeah it's pretty tough putting on gatorskins. thumbs heal though.
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Old 05-26-10, 12:20 AM   #9
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Gatorskins are turds to put on. I've lost the skin layers on the side of the road after a flat changing those turds. Not a fun way to ride home.
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Old 05-26-10, 01:42 AM   #10
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The folding Gatorskins is not as hard to get on IMO.
I thought the OP lost his thumbs in some horrific drive-chain incident.
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Old 05-26-10, 02:06 AM   #11
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so... why am i not seeing any PICTURES?
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Old 05-26-10, 02:20 AM   #12
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I thought someone lost there thumb
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Old 05-26-10, 05:33 AM   #13
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These things seriously don't get enough press. Kool Stop tire bead jack. Works like a miracle with sh*tty tire/rim combos.
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Old 05-26-10, 08:33 AM   #14
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These things seriously don't get enough press. Kool Stop tire bead jack. Works like a miracle with sh*tty tire/rim combos.
gasp! just what I needed!! thanks!
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Old 05-26-10, 08:39 AM   #15
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I put on a Gatorskin recently and it wasn't that difficult... You can buy a bead jack or you can learn to use multiple tire levers, as if you were changing a motorcycle tire.

Maybe next time wipe the rim with some soapy water to make it easier
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Old 05-26-10, 04:25 PM   #16
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Eventually you get better at this sort of thing. I have definitely done my share of breaking levers, swearing, crying, double checking to make sure i didn't have the wrong size tire, etc, but at this point I haven't met a bead-rim combo that i can't install by hand, without ripping my thumbs open. I know its obvious but you really need to get every tenth of a mm of slack you can around to the last bit of bead. Pull the bead tight in both directions as you go around the tire, and make sure that it is right up against the rim, all the way around, before attempting the last bit.

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Old 05-26-10, 05:39 PM   #17
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What rims do you use? My wire bead GSs didn't seem overly difficult to install on open pros.
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Old 05-26-10, 05:47 PM   #18
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raw thumbs mean nothing. multiple broken levers are mildly of note.
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Old 05-26-10, 05:48 PM   #19
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Tire levers. It's not hard.
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Old 05-26-10, 06:28 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by Fugazi Dave View Post


These things seriously don't get enough press. Kool Stop tire bead jack. Works like a miracle with sh*tty tire/rim combos.
+3000 on these Tire Jacks.
They are about, 8.5" long very light weight and super sturdy.
Used it changing a friends flat in the field last weekend. Say byebye to blisters!
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Old 05-26-10, 06:31 PM   #21
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These things seriously don't get enough press. Kool Stop tire bead jack. Works like a miracle with sh*tty tire/rim combos.
How do you use one of these?; I'm having a hard time figuring out only from the picture.... and there's nothing online about how to use them.
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Old 05-26-10, 06:38 PM   #22
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Fast forward to 4:30
http://bicycletutor.com/fix-flat-tire/
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Old 05-26-10, 06:41 PM   #23
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@happypills - You straddle the tire with the jack, place the round part on the top of the rim on the opposite side of the tire where you are trying to install it, place the hook side under the tire bead and push the lever handle towards the other side of the rim. It will just pop in place like magic.
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Old 05-26-10, 08:10 PM   #24
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Ah got it. Just ordered one from jenson aswell.

BTW random but I just realized that bicycle tutor guy is canadian.... from his accent....

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Old 05-26-10, 08:23 PM   #25
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BTW random but I just realized that bicycle tutor guy is canadian.... from his accent....
Eh?
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