We were about 50 miles into a 70 mile ride Saturday when the front tire on our Burley abruptly deflated. We were waiting at a stop sign when it happened, so it was no big deal - we just dismounted and walked the bike across the intersection. However, earlier in the ride we had done some fairly fast descents, so the spontaneous nature of this failure was more than a little unnerving.
The tube had developed a small split on the rim side. The rim tape is good, and the tube was only a few months old, so I am assuming the failure resulted from poor manufacturing. The tube was the basic black rubber model from Specialized. I have had, over the years, at least a couple of tubes from this vendor fail new out of the box, so I guess I shouldn't be shocked.
I am curious whether any of you have opinions about tube quality. Are there better quality tube available at a premium price?