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Old 01-29-06, 06:56 PM   #1
spinnaker
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How do you keep tires at pressure on tour?

Well a flat on my roadbike today made me think about my up coming tour. I could barely get the pressure to 60 with my little frame pump. How am I going to top off or worse completly fill my tires on a tour?

I have an adapter that converts presta to Schrader and I guess I could use airpumps at gas stations to top off but do I trust them?
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Old 01-29-06, 07:00 PM   #2
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You could always look up bikeshops along your route and mark them off on your tour map. Many shops will allow you to stop in just to air up. If you want to pay them some patronage then buy a PowerBar or something. Gas station air pumps work fine. You just have to be careful. I would try and use the ones that have a fairly decent looking guage.
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Old 01-29-06, 07:04 PM   #3
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Topeak Morph pump. No substitute for touring.
Search the forum on it - you'll turn up a lot of threads.
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Old 01-29-06, 07:16 PM   #4
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Topeak Road Morph pump.

Even I can pump my tires up to 90 psi with that thing ... and I haven't been known in the past for my upper body strength.
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Old 01-29-06, 07:26 PM   #5
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+another for the Topeak road morph.
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Old 01-29-06, 07:33 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Machka
Topeak Road Morph pump.

Even I can pump my tires up to 90 psi with that thing ... and I haven't been known in the past for my upper body strength.
Ditto. Those suckers are truely awesome!
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Old 01-29-06, 07:45 PM   #7
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From the old and ornery gallery... I would also recommend the Zefal HPX frame pump. It will pump up over 100psi and the metal head is great for "Pit Bull Polo"
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Old 01-29-06, 07:49 PM   #8
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I have a Topeak Road Morph, but I have used it just once.
I get the tires where I want them before we leave, And that's it.
If they get a little soft, so does the ride. What's wrong with that?
They're less likely to flat with lower pressure anyway.
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Old 01-29-06, 07:53 PM   #9
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I like the Zefals too. I use the 4x sized frame fit pump with a velcro strap to be sure it stays on. I hope you are not going touring on the same tires you used on your road riding. Treat yourself to a set of somewhat fatter new tires a week before you leave and ride them a bit. Loaded touring? Wider tires!
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Old 01-29-06, 07:57 PM   #10
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And if you can score yourself an old Zefal Lapize, you can do what this person did.

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Old 01-29-06, 08:28 PM   #11
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Well I guess I am going to have to check out the Topeak pump. I wish I had a dime for every dollar that I have spent on "upgrades".
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Old 01-29-06, 08:33 PM   #12
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So now I wonder what the difference is between the Topeak Mountain Morph and the Road Morph? Maybe length?

I have a Mountain Morph. It took a little getting used to. My frame MTB frame is pretty small (16.5"). The pump fits great. Just a little wierd. I had a MT Zefal for many years. The head finally rusted off. The Mountain Morph does work really good.

Agreed, lower pressured tires don't loose air quite as fast. I've gone days without having to add air. I also use inexpensive tubes. My .04.
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Old 01-29-06, 08:43 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jharte
So now I wonder what the difference is between the Topeak Mountain Morph and the Road Morph? Maybe length?
For one thing, I think the road morph has a gauge but the mountain morph doesn't.

And like you, I ride with my tires a little underfilled and don't top them up very often. Mine are usually kept somewhere between 90 and 100 psi. I actually check them with a gauge once every two or three weeks ... especially if they feel a bit lowish when I squeeze them or when I'm riding on them. I also use inexpensive tubes (the cheap ones from MEC), and inexpensive tires (the $13 Conti 1000s from MEC).
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Old 01-29-06, 08:59 PM   #14
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The mountain morph pump has a gauge. I have both pumps and truth is, I can't see any real difference between them other than the mountain morph has a squared off handle vs the road morphs rounded (aero) shaped handle. Both seem to pump the same pressure.

Both are truly great pumps.
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Old 01-30-06, 12:10 AM   #15
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You won't get more than about 60 psi out of most pumps if they don't have a hose. That pressure is quite adequate for some of the popular touring tires, eg Conti TT2000 in 34 or 37c. But with most of the compact pumps you'll be doing awfully good to get 60 psi out of them, 40psi is more like it (untill you either die of boredom, your forearms get so tired that you drop the pump or you break the valve stem off).

The Topeak road or mountain morps (available with or without a pressure gauge) are widely acknowledged to be one of the best portable pumps. Some of the other high-end pumps are ok too eg. blackburn. And I've got a 98 gr. Wrench Force pump that I can hit 100 psi with. Ditto with an old Zephal frame pump from the 70's but it's too long to carry.

If you don't want to buy yet another pump you can get a replacement pump hose from most hardware stores for about a dollar and clamp the pump onto the threads at one end of the hose (Schrader-sized threads) and put the other end on your valve stem. That will allow you to put one end of the pump on the ground to get more pressure on the pump.

An easy way to get your tires topped up is to use an air chuck and a ~25 gram air cartridge. Most of the new air chucks have a demand valve so you can just put a little shot into your tires every few days. I had a pump shaft bend once and so used the air cartridge for the next week, I think I got about 4 tires topped up out of 1 cartridge.

Cheers.

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Old 01-30-06, 12:32 AM   #16
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My Blackburn frame pump will quite easily reach the 80 lbs I put into my 38mm touring tires. It easily converts to Schraeder or Presta. The older model has a valve clamp that is truely a terrible pain to use, but the new models have overcome the problem.

I carry a pressure guage and check my tires every day and put in a few pounds about every other day. Even a few pounds down can decrease tire efficiency requiring a constant application of increased effort.
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Old 01-30-06, 01:04 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spinnaker
I have an adapter that converts presta to Schrader and I guess I could use airpumps at gas stations to top off but do I trust them?
Car tyres usually require only about 25-40 psi but at huge volumes. Wouldn't pumps at gas stations be both calibrated for that use and possibly very difficult to use in any other way? That is, for anything other than low pressure, high volume. A bike tyre, even a big fat one, is medium to high pressure and, relative to a car tyre, low volume.

My guess is that ANY bike pump you carry is better than ANY gas station air pump.

But anyway, the Topeak Road Morph is a wonderful pump. I've impressed many of my fellow bike club members with it! "Where did you get that? I want one too!" is a typical comment.
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Old 01-30-06, 01:16 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CdCf
Car tyres usually require only about 25-40 psi but at huge volumes. Wouldn't pumps at gas stations be both calibrated for that use and possibly very difficult to use in any other way? That is, for anything other than low pressure, high volume. A bike tyre, even a big fat one, is medium to high pressure and, relative to a car tyre, low volume.
Most gas station pumps are essentially the same compressor/tank system that's used to drive air tools. This same system is often used at bike shops as well to refill tyres. They'll fill up a bike tyre fine... even high pressure tubulars.
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Old 01-30-06, 01:19 AM   #19
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Gas station pumps are fine, in my experience, as long as you have the right valves or adaptors. They don't surge in much air at those pressures so you have plenty of time. They either have a pre-pressurized tank, or an electric pump, and neither puts in the last pounds terribly fast.

The only problem is they aren't generally where you need them if you get a flat.

I got a road morph on my trip, and I used it a lot. I only got one puncture, but it took out the Schwalbe tire aslso, and I had to replace it a half dozen tiems trying different jury rigged solutions. Having the road moph made the whole process essentially painless. Actually, a Road Morph, a quick stick tire removal tool, and pre-glued patches make tube repair a breeze.
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Old 01-30-06, 08:23 AM   #20
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The Blackburn Air Stick are excellent as they come in alu or carbon blow my road and mtb tyres to pressure just fine. As for petrol or gas station will fill your tyres just fine as they're design to fill truck tyres to 100+ psi so no probs filling you road tyres. As for running you tyres at a lower pressure so not get puntures that not true as the recommended pressure is there to stop pinch flat,stop your tyre from rolling off the rim, etc the manufaturers design tyres so that they're at their most punture resistant at full pressure.
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Old 01-30-06, 08:35 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by khuon
Most gas station pumps are essentially the same compressor/tank system that's used to drive air tools. This same system is often used at bike shops as well to refill tyres. They'll fill up a bike tyre fine... even high pressure tubulars.
Not the ones we have here. They go up to about 3 "kg of pressure". That's 40 psi.

Anyway, in a country where gas stations easily can be 20-30 km apart, why would anyone NOT carry a pump that's available right away, right where you happen to flat.
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Old 01-30-06, 09:50 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CdCf
Not the ones we have here. They go up to about 3 "kg of pressure". That's 40 psi.

Anyway, in a country where gas stations easily can be 20-30 km apart, why would anyone NOT carry a pump that's available right away, right where you happen to flat.
I'm not suggesting that the OP not carry a pump. I was suggesting the use of gas stations (actually, I was advocating bike shops) in the context of the subject of this thread which is essentially to top off each day to maintain tyre pressure. FWIW, I have been able to get my tyres up to 100PSI using just a minipump and I don't have exceptional upper-body strength. And I was able to do it in just under eight minutes.



Also note that I wasn't using a Morph pump although it was a Topeak brand.
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Old 01-30-06, 10:59 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by khuon
I'm not suggesting that the OP not carry a pump. I was suggesting the use of gas stations (actually, I was advocating bike shops) in the context of the subject of this thread which is essentially to top off each day to maintain tyre pressure.
Yeah, I know. Spinnaker brought gas stations into the discussion.

Are bike shops common over there? Here, you'd have trouble finding one in anything but the largest cities (large here = more than 25 000 ppl). And they're usually 50+ km apart.
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Old 01-30-06, 11:38 AM   #24
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Topeak road morph with gauge. The road morph has a slightly smaller diameter shaft and piston than the MTB. morph. Just like most road pumps compared to MTB. pumps.
The smaller diameter cylinder allows one to pump up to higher pressure with less muscle power. This is less volume per stroke than the MTB. pump. This is why many road pumps are longer than MTB pumps, to make up for less volume per stroke.
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Old 01-30-06, 12:40 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by supcom
The mountain morph pump has a gauge. I have both pumps and truth is, I can't see any real difference between them other than the mountain morph has a squared off handle vs the road morphs rounded (aero) shaped handle. Both seem to pump the same pressure.

Both are truly great pumps.
The Mountain Morph has a slightly larger diameter for low pressure/large volume applications.
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