Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Vancouver, Canada
Bikes: Rodriguez Shiftless street fixie with S&S couplers, Kuwahara tandem, Trek carbon, Dolan track
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This is an interesting topic. I've not had front blowouts, but I have had the front tire deflate quickly on a fast descent, and it wasn't a problem to control. Applying smooth braking had no adverse effect. (The key is to be smooth but quick, just like driving a race car.) I think what may be counterintuitive is that the longer wheelbase of a tandem actually makes a front blowout easier to deal with than on a shorter single bike, where a loose front end leads to unpredictable behavior. Same as riding on loose gravel. I find the front breaks a lot easier on a single bike on loose gravel than on a tandem. A tandem rides over loose gravel much like a boat cuts thru waves. Turns might be a problem; I can see the front wheel sliding sideways as you try to make the turn, either on gravel or on a flat front.
PS to OP: If the tire is going from 120 psi to 95 psi overnight, and it's a butyl tube, you've got a slow leak that needs fixing. I find standard air leakage from 120 to be about 5 lbs per day. A real natural rubber innertube will lose lots more pressure, though.