Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Bicycle Mechanics
Reload this Page >

Continual punctures

Notices
Bicycle Mechanics Broken bottom bracket? Tacoed wheel? If you're having problems with your bicycle, or just need help fixing a flat, drop in here for the latest on bicycle mechanics & bicycle maintenance.

Continual punctures

Old 03-26-20, 03:00 PM
  #1  
sykerocker 
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
sykerocker's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Ashland, VA
Posts: 4,257

Bikes: The keepers: 1958 Raleigh Lenton Grand Prix, 1968 Ranger, 1969 Magneet Sprint, 1971 Gitane Tour de France, 1973 Raleigh Tourist, 3 - 1986 Rossins, and a '77 PX-10 frame in process.

Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 167 Post(s)
Liked 103 Times in 63 Posts
Continual punctures

At the Westminster, MD swap meet in February I picked up a mint condition Flying Pigeon roadster for the munificent sum of $50.00. Exactly as pictured, with a flat rear tire:



After a month of fettling (you wouldn't believe the assembly condition, every part was loose, except for the wheel bearing cups which were installed with an air wrench), I now understand why the previous owner was so desperate to rid himself of the bike. You can't ride it five miles without getting a rear puncture. On the inside (rim side) of the tube:



No spokes are protruding, the rim strip is in good condition, nothing fails the finger test all the way around the rim, and after the second flat I added a layer of electrical tape over the rim strip for extra cushioning (still rebuilding my shop, parts supply is short at present). I managed a 3.5 mile ride this morning and figured I finally had the problem solved. Took it out again this afternoon, barely got a half mile down the road and flat again.

The best guess I can come up with is that the tire bead isn't seating well enough allowing the tire to rotate on the rim (28x1/2 tire, 40-635 tube, 50lbs pressure - I don't run a rod braked roadster higher than that, my Raleigh Tourist has been known to occasionally blow the bead at 55lbs, wlll definitely do it at 60). Does anyone else out there either have a better idea, or confirmation of what I'm thinking?
__________________
Syke

"No wonder we keep testing positive in their bicycle races. Everyone looks like they're full of testosterone when they're surrounded by Frenchmen." ---Argus Hamilton
sykerocker is offline  
Old 03-26-20, 03:09 PM
  #2  
cyccommute 
Mad bike riding scientist
 
cyccommute's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Denver, CO
Posts: 22,048

Bikes: Some silver ones, a red one, an orange one and a few titanium ones

Mentioned: 108 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2968 Post(s)
Liked 414 Times in 292 Posts
Originally Posted by sykerocker View Post
At the Westminster, MD swap meet in February I picked up a mint condition Flying Pigeon roadster for the munificent sum of $50.00. Exactly as pictured, with a flat rear tire:



After a month of fettling (you wouldn't believe the assembly condition, every part was loose, except for the wheel bearing cups which were installed with an air wrench), I now understand why the previous owner was so desperate to rid himself of the bike. You can't ride it five miles without getting a rear puncture. On the inside (rim side) of the tube:



No spokes are protruding, the rim strip is in good condition, nothing fails the finger test all the way around the rim, and after the second flat I added a layer of electrical tape over the rim strip for extra cushioning (still rebuilding my shop, parts supply is short at present). I managed a 3.5 mile ride this morning and figured I finally had the problem solved. Took it out again this afternoon, barely got a half mile down the road and flat again.

The best guess I can come up with is that the tire bead isn't seating well enough allowing the tire to rotate on the rim (28x1/2 tire, 40-635 tube, 50lbs pressure - I don't run a rod braked roadster higher than that, my Raleigh Tourist has been known to occasionally blow the bead at 55lbs, wlll definitely do it at 60). Does anyone else out there either have a better idea, or confirmation of what I'm thinking?
I bet your rimstrip isnít as good as you think it is. If it is rubber, replace it with cloth or something fiberous.
__________________
Stuart Black
Gold Fever Three days of dirt in Colorado
Pokin' around the Poconos A cold ride around Lake Erie
Dinosaurs in Colorado A mountain bike guide to the Purgatory Canyon dinosaur trackway
Solo Without Pie. The search for pie in the Midwest.
Picking the Scablands. Washington and Oregon, 2005. Pie and spiders on the Columbia River!
Days of Wineless Roads. Bed and Breakfasting along the KATY
Twisting Down the Alley. Misadventures in tornado alley.
cyccommute is offline  
Likes For cyccommute:
Old 03-26-20, 03:28 PM
  #3  
2_i 
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Michigan
Posts: 2,637

Bikes: Trek 730, Bike Friday NWT, Brompton M6R*2, Trek 830, Trek 720, Dahon HAT060, Dahon HT060,...

Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 396 Post(s)
Liked 33 Times in 26 Posts
Is the puncture always occurring at the same location? Mark the location on the rim and look there. Could there be a sharp edge in the lip of the rim?
2_i is offline  
Likes For 2_i:
Old 03-26-20, 03:39 PM
  #4  
alo
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2020
Posts: 242
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 100 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 47 Times in 33 Posts
Look again for anything causing it, and fix.

Some old tubes can split easily. Replace it with a new tube.
alo is offline  
Old 03-26-20, 03:52 PM
  #5  
sykerocker 
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
sykerocker's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Ashland, VA
Posts: 4,257

Bikes: The keepers: 1958 Raleigh Lenton Grand Prix, 1968 Ranger, 1969 Magneet Sprint, 1971 Gitane Tour de France, 1973 Raleigh Tourist, 3 - 1986 Rossins, and a '77 PX-10 frame in process.

Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 167 Post(s)
Liked 103 Times in 63 Posts
Originally Posted by alo View Post
Look again for anything causing it, and fix.

Some old tubes can split easily. Replace it with a new tube.
That is a new tube. The second I've put on the bike. Two rides and approximately four miles on it.
__________________
Syke

"No wonder we keep testing positive in their bicycle races. Everyone looks like they're full of testosterone when they're surrounded by Frenchmen." ---Argus Hamilton
sykerocker is offline  
Old 03-26-20, 04:07 PM
  #6  
Clyde1820
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2014
Location: USA
Posts: 933
Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 223 Post(s)
Liked 80 Times in 60 Posts
Originally Posted by sykerocker View Post
That is a new tube. The second I've put on the bike. Two rides and approximately four miles on it.
You mention the "finger test" around the rim.

Have you done the same all around the interior of the tire itself? Might be a sharp object embedded in the tire that protrudes just enough on the inside such that the tube gets slashed.
Clyde1820 is offline  
Old 03-26-20, 04:58 PM
  #7  
alo
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2020
Posts: 242
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 100 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 47 Times in 33 Posts
Originally Posted by sykerocker View Post
That is a new tube. The second I've put on the bike. Two rides and approximately four miles on it.
There will be something there. It is up to you to find it.
alo is offline  
Old 03-26-20, 05:40 PM
  #8  
hrdknox1
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 67
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 39 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 12 Times in 10 Posts
Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
I bet your rimstrip isnít as good as you think it is. If it is rubber, replace it with cloth or something fiberous.
I second that. Even with the added electrical tape the tube isn't protected enough. Electrical tape is thin. Try a cloth rim strip on top of electrical tape.
hrdknox1 is offline  
Old 03-26-20, 07:26 PM
  #9  
canklecat
Me duelen las nalgas
 
canklecat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Texas
Posts: 10,598

Bikes: Centurion Ironman, Trek 5900, Univega Via Carisma, Globe Carmel

Mentioned: 179 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3357 Post(s)
Liked 732 Times in 502 Posts
Are those single wall rims (whoops, my bad, I should have written double wall rims) with deep holes for spoke nipples? If so, thin rubber band type rim strips won't provide enough support. The tube will extrude into the spoke nipple hole and weaken, usually splitting just like the photo shows.

Try a cloth rim tape like Velox or other (they're all pretty much the same). Or a rigid plastic rim strip like Schwalbe sells. But the cloth tape works great.

The only trick with cloth tape is to avoid using tape that's too wide. If I climbs up the shoulders of the rim it can hinder seating the bead on some tire/rim combinations. I usually chose cloth tape just wide enough to cover the spoke nipple holes but no wider.

Last edited by canklecat; 03-28-20 at 05:19 PM.
canklecat is offline  
Old 03-26-20, 07:46 PM
  #10  
sykerocker 
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
sykerocker's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Ashland, VA
Posts: 4,257

Bikes: The keepers: 1958 Raleigh Lenton Grand Prix, 1968 Ranger, 1969 Magneet Sprint, 1971 Gitane Tour de France, 1973 Raleigh Tourist, 3 - 1986 Rossins, and a '77 PX-10 frame in process.

Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 167 Post(s)
Liked 103 Times in 63 Posts
Originally Posted by hrdknox1 View Post
I second that. Even with the added electrical tape the tube isn't protected enough. Electrical tape is thin. Try a cloth rim strip on top of electrical tape.
Sounds like the best idea so far. Will give it a try.
__________________
Syke

"No wonder we keep testing positive in their bicycle races. Everyone looks like they're full of testosterone when they're surrounded by Frenchmen." ---Argus Hamilton
sykerocker is offline  
Old 03-26-20, 07:48 PM
  #11  
sykerocker 
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
sykerocker's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Ashland, VA
Posts: 4,257

Bikes: The keepers: 1958 Raleigh Lenton Grand Prix, 1968 Ranger, 1969 Magneet Sprint, 1971 Gitane Tour de France, 1973 Raleigh Tourist, 3 - 1986 Rossins, and a '77 PX-10 frame in process.

Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 167 Post(s)
Liked 103 Times in 63 Posts
Originally Posted by Clyde1820 View Post
You mention the "finger test" around the rim.

Have you done the same all around the interior of the tire itself? Might be a sharp object embedded in the tire that protrudes just enough on the inside such that the tube gets slashed.
Did that immediately. That was my first thought. Then did the finger test down the rim, checking each of the spoke ends.
__________________
Syke

"No wonder we keep testing positive in their bicycle races. Everyone looks like they're full of testosterone when they're surrounded by Frenchmen." ---Argus Hamilton
sykerocker is offline  
Old 03-26-20, 08:23 PM
  #12  
jimincalif
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Lake Forest, CA
Posts: 2,222

Bikes: '96 Trek 850, '08 Specialized Roubaix Comp, '18 Niner RLT RDO

Mentioned: 53 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 545 Post(s)
Liked 72 Times in 47 Posts
Iíve gone to using tubeless tape for both my tubed and tubeless rims. Tesa tape, I think #4289 is the stuff. I buy it from November Bikes. Was getting recurring punctures even with the good cloth stuff.
jimincalif is offline  
Old 03-26-20, 10:39 PM
  #13  
veganbikes
Clark W. Griswold
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: ,location, location
Posts: 5,460

Bikes: Foundry Chilkoot Ti W/Ultegra Di2, Salsa Timberjack Ti, Cinelli Mash Work RandoCross Fun Time Machine, 1x9 XT Parts Hybrid, Co-Motion Cascadia, Specialized Langster, Pink Klein MTB, Phil Wood VeloXS Frame (w/DA 7400), Cilo Road Frame, Proteus frame

Mentioned: 30 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1273 Post(s)
Liked 101 Times in 74 Posts
The bike was designed to fly less likely to get punctures while flying : P

I tend to use the fabric reinforced Continental rim strips to good result but I don't think they make them for your tire size however Velox or better yet Newbaums will work well or tubless tape if you need something lower profile.
veganbikes is offline  
Old 03-27-20, 06:48 AM
  #14  
Moe Zhoost
Half way there
 
Moe Zhoost's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Location: Durham, NC
Posts: 1,771

Bikes: Many, and the list changes frequently

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 530 Post(s)
Liked 220 Times in 135 Posts
Although infrequent, this has confounded me before. I found no sharp edges, no protruding spokes, and used quality rim strip ... i.e. no apparent fault. I found that running a strip or two of thin, fiber-reinforced packing tape tightly around the rim before I installed the rim strip solved the issue.
Moe Zhoost is offline  
Old 03-27-20, 07:19 AM
  #15  
ups
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2020
Posts: 49
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 11 Post(s)
Liked 5 Times in 5 Posts
Run a cotton ball around the rim to check for sharps.

Looking at that cut the second thing that came to mind was a sharp edge on the rim strip.

Good luck. That is really frustrating.
ups is offline  
Old 03-27-20, 07:42 AM
  #16  
sykerocker 
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
sykerocker's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Ashland, VA
Posts: 4,257

Bikes: The keepers: 1958 Raleigh Lenton Grand Prix, 1968 Ranger, 1969 Magneet Sprint, 1971 Gitane Tour de France, 1973 Raleigh Tourist, 3 - 1986 Rossins, and a '77 PX-10 frame in process.

Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 167 Post(s)
Liked 103 Times in 63 Posts
A very productive evening for possible answers. Thank you. Will give a few of these a try once I'm done mowing the lawn this afternoon.
__________________
Syke

"No wonder we keep testing positive in their bicycle races. Everyone looks like they're full of testosterone when they're surrounded by Frenchmen." ---Argus Hamilton
sykerocker is offline  
Old 03-27-20, 06:37 PM
  #17  
Mad Honk 
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2019
Location: Bloomington, IN
Posts: 709

Bikes: Trek 770, Trek 760, Schwinn Peloton, Patelli Professional, Othon Ochsner

Mentioned: 8 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 301 Post(s)
Liked 164 Times in 132 Posts
Your'e mowing already? I've got another three weeks here before even thinking about it. How is the new Grudge? Smiles, MH
Mad Honk is offline  
Old 03-27-20, 09:41 PM
  #18  
Doug64
Senior Member
 
Doug64's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Oregon
Posts: 5,653
Mentioned: 29 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 824 Post(s)
Liked 98 Times in 66 Posts
Originally Posted by sykerocker View Post
A very productive evening for possible answers. Thank you. Will give a few of these a try once I'm done mowing the lawn this afternoon.
If all the other advice fails try checking the area where the rim is joined together. I ruined a wheel on a tour and the replacement I was able to find. It would go flat after 30-50 miles. After patching it twice I finally was able to locate it on the rim. I did this by placing the logo on the tire in line with the valve stem. When the tire went flat I lined up the tube's valve and then searced both the tire and rim at the location of the puncture. I found a rough spot on the inside of the rim's joint. Using the sandpaper in my patch kit I sanded it smooth, and went another 1000 miles without a flat.
Doug64 is offline  
Likes For Doug64:
Old 03-27-20, 10:47 PM
  #19  
zacster
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Brooklyn NY
Posts: 6,572
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 22 Post(s)
Liked 105 Times in 83 Posts
Another thing to check is that the rim tape/covering that is there now isn't slipping when you mount the tire. I had that happen to me with Velox tape that just slid to the side. And the thing I discovered then too is to not use tape that is too wide because when you put the tire on it protrudes from the side enough to slip with the friction of the tire against the tube while mounting. It worked fine when the wheel was new and for about 3 years, then I just couldn't stop the flats and that's what it was.
zacster is offline  
Old 03-27-20, 11:09 PM
  #20  
79pmooney
A Roadie Forever
 
79pmooney's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 7,635

Bikes: (2) ti TiCycles, 2007 w/ triple and 2011 fixed, 1979 Peter Mooney, ~1983 Trek 420 now fixed and ~1973 Raleigh Carlton Competition gravel grinder

Mentioned: 97 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1939 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 317 Times in 232 Posts
Ride with the same tube and patch it. This will give you a running record of where tie issue(s) is. (Remember, the cut is "n" spokes from theeh valve but can be in either direction.) My guess is that you will see the patches falling in near the same place (or directly beside each other if you hold the valve and pull the tube away from it). Now you know the issue is. Knowing exactly where to look makes finding an unknown much easier.

I patch tubes for routine flats whenever possible. For very small punctures, it tells me where to be looikng for that nearly invisible tire wire or tiny piece of glass or broken thorn, all of which can be entirely inside the casing waiting to cause the next flat.

Ben
79pmooney is offline  
Old 03-27-20, 11:59 PM
  #21  
dabac
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 8,034
Mentioned: 40 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 859 Post(s)
Liked 33 Times in 28 Posts
Originally Posted by canklecat View Post
Are those single wall rims with deep holes for spoke ?
Huh?
dabac is offline  
Old 03-28-20, 12:24 AM
  #22  
dabac
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 8,034
Mentioned: 40 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 859 Post(s)
Liked 33 Times in 28 Posts
Zooming in on the rim, it looks like it has a fairly narrow central ridge where the nipple holes are. Sometimes when you have a rim profile thatís deep and narrow, the tube wonít fill the trench evenly. Itíll get hung up on the edges and then only the material earlier spanning the trench will stretch to the bottom of the trench. Whether itís the localized stretch as such that pops the tube, or the thinness that makes it more sensitivite, I donít know.
You have a couple of options if you want to research this route:
1) make sure to use the widest tube possible
2) inflate slowly, giving the tube time to creep into the crevasse
3) use some talcum powder, corn starch etc on the inside of the rim to encourage creep
4) if you donít need the trench to get the tire on, fill it. Iíve got an old Dutch bike with a similar rim profile that had a length of rope as filler. Not a great choice of material b/c of water retention and long-term survival of the rim, but sound in principle. If I ever find a less rusty replacement rim Iíd probably use a length of transparent fuel hose of the right size instead.
5) or deck it over. Iíd probably use something sold as a tape rather than something sold as a rim strip. Duct tape with a long-lasting adhesive cut down to width for example.
dabac is offline  
Old 03-28-20, 12:44 AM
  #23  
canklecat
Me duelen las nalgas
 
canklecat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Texas
Posts: 10,598

Bikes: Centurion Ironman, Trek 5900, Univega Via Carisma, Globe Carmel

Mentioned: 179 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3357 Post(s)
Liked 732 Times in 502 Posts
Originally Posted by dabac View Post
Huh?
My mistake. I should have written double wall rims with deep spoke nipple holes where the base of the nipple isn't flush with the inside bottom of the rim trough.

Soft rubber rim strips and tubes can extrude into the holes, forming dimples that weaken the tube and eventually splitting at the tips of the dimples. It happens less often with single wall rims where the base of the nipple is closer to flush with the rim trough.

Switching to cloth tape solved that problem with all my wheels, single and double wall rims.

See these threads:
Rim side tube puncture: No spoke or removed tape

Tube failure on inner side, no puncture, rim strip good

Weinmann LP18 Geometry Causes Flats?
canklecat is offline  
Old 03-28-20, 04:03 AM
  #24  
dabac
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 8,034
Mentioned: 40 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 859 Post(s)
Liked 33 Times in 28 Posts
Originally Posted by canklecat View Post
My mistake. I should have written double wall rims with deep spoke nipple holes where the base of the nipple isn't flush with the inside bottom of the rim trough.
I got a bit hesitant there whether it was a typo or if youíd found some truly odd rim design somewhere.
dabac is offline  
Old 03-28-20, 04:31 PM
  #25  
sykerocker 
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
sykerocker's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Ashland, VA
Posts: 4,257

Bikes: The keepers: 1958 Raleigh Lenton Grand Prix, 1968 Ranger, 1969 Magneet Sprint, 1971 Gitane Tour de France, 1973 Raleigh Tourist, 3 - 1986 Rossins, and a '77 PX-10 frame in process.

Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 167 Post(s)
Liked 103 Times in 63 Posts
Originally Posted by Moe Zhoost View Post
Although infrequent, this has confounded me before. I found no sharp edges, no protruding spokes, and used quality rim strip ... i.e. no apparent fault. I found that running a strip or two of thin, fiber-reinforced packing tape tightly around the rim before I installed the rim strip solved the issue.
Bingo! It seems to work. Patched the tire yesterday, inflated it and let it sit overnight. Did one layer of reinforced packing tape over top the layer of electrical tape. Mounted the wheel this morning (I've gotten to the point that I can do a rear wheel on a rod braked roadster almost in my sleep), and did two rides today totaling 11 miles with no problem.
__________________
Syke

"No wonder we keep testing positive in their bicycle races. Everyone looks like they're full of testosterone when they're surrounded by Frenchmen." ---Argus Hamilton
sykerocker is offline  
Likes For sykerocker:

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.