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Help!? No more flat tires!!??

Old 10-27-08, 07:32 AM
  #1  
noflattire2009
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Help!? No more flat tires!!??

Hi,
We are four students from Copenhagen, Denmark, who are currently investigating potential innovations and solutions which can help solve the problem of puncturing and flat tires. To our knowledge there is at present no 100 % puncture free solution for bike tires. We would very much appreciate contributions from you, in forms of concrete knowledge, links to manufacturers, knowhow about and experience with light and comfortable puncture free solutions for bikers?
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Old 10-27-08, 11:17 AM
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Going to move this over to the mechanics forum for you - if you search there have been some debates on this already but perhaps people can point out some good links.
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Old 10-27-08, 11:29 AM
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Make this for a bicycle and i'll be a buyer:

https://www.gizmag.com/go/3603/

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Old 10-27-08, 11:30 AM
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A quick google search came up with this:
https://www.airfreetires.com/

I'm sure there are other brands or types. A solid tire can't go flat! Other than this type of tire, I don't think anything can claim to be flat free.
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Old 10-27-08, 11:55 AM
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Specialized Armadillos

4+ years flat free.

https://www.specialized.com/bc/SBCEqS...oTires&eid=355
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Old 10-27-08, 12:07 PM
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Well, in America it's better to not invent a flat free tire but claim you did. Make a solid and extremely heavy tire, then offer a warranty with "free" replacement but charge an outrageous amount for shipping, so what you're really doing is making money off of shipping your "free" replacement tires.

It worked for Midas brake pads.
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Old 10-27-08, 12:21 PM
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Originally Posted by CigarDad View Post
Specialized Armadillos

4+ years flat free.

https://www.specialized.com/bc/SBCEqS...oTires&eid=355
Mine only lasted 200 miles before the first glass flat. That was a sad day
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Old 10-27-08, 01:01 PM
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Weight, rolling resistance, and comfort is the problem you will have for any puncture resistant system. The simplest solution would be a one-piece liner insert that covers the tread and sidewalls. But since tires may vary for the same size tire, it is difficult to come up with a liner that is flexible/adjustable enough. Current tire liners have overlap so it can be as universal as possible, but there is no sidewall protection. Overlap with a liner that has sidewall protection may pinch the tubes more and may wear at that point or cause a flat. You would have to add duct tape and/or round off any edges, like many use with current liners, for tube protection.

While not a puncture resistant solution, a half foam insert would work and if the tube was punctured, the foam would provide enough support (runflat) to allow the rider to get to their destination or a safer area at lower speeds, like a compact spare or a car racing tire with an inner liner, while saving their rims from being bent/damaged or the tires from separating from the rim. The density needed for the foam would have to be experimented with to find the best possible compromise. Half foam will make tire/tube changes easier than a pure airless solution and since a tube is still being used, the comfort level is higher and the air pressure can still be changed for weather related conditions.

That being said, armadillos or marathon plus tires with tire liners and maybe thicker tubes or slime filled tubes is as good as it gets, esp in goathead country.

Last edited by Sci-Fi; 10-28-08 at 07:13 PM.
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Old 10-28-08, 12:59 PM
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Half-foam is an interesting idea. That would shield the tube from thorns, nails and glass that makes it through the casing. I'm placing my bets on some sort of flexible closed-cell foam.

I used to get 3-5 goathead flats a week on my commute to the bike-shop. Easy solution turned it into 1-2 a year.
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Old 10-28-08, 01:33 PM
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https://sheldonbrown.com/tires.html#airless
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Old 10-28-08, 05:27 PM
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Here in the goathead covered southwest, many customers choose thorn resistant(thick) tubes with sealant paste inside. As mentioned above, although this works quite well for flat resistance, the wheel is 1-2 pounds heavier. Personally, I'd rather carry spare tubes and a pump, as well as choose my path judiciously, than try to accelerate (ridiculously)heavy wheels.
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Old 10-28-08, 05:56 PM
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Sci-Fi touched on tire liners. Inflatable tires are deflatable. On a bike, you want inflatable tires. What to do? I went with the all or nothing theory of armor found in the design of tanks and battleships.

On the bicycle tire, the most frequent threat is where the rubber meets the road, the tread. I have gravitated to kevlar belted tires and plastic tire liners.

New materials like Vectran will improve bicycle tires to a degree. Beyond that, I can't say. There is a reasonable limit to sacrifices made to make tires flat resistant.

No tanks or battleships were harmed in coming to this conclusion.
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Old 10-28-08, 09:08 PM
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While the punctures under "normal" riding conditions can be predictably avoided with reinforced tires (such as Conti's Gatorskins, and Schwalbe's Marathon), there is still the issue of the pinch flat. This can conceivably be solved, but not without making serious concessions to performance.

Water always flows to the sea, and air pressure always wants to balance within an environment. Buy Gatorskins, keep 'em properly inflated and spend the research funds on AIDS education in Africa instead.
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Old 10-29-08, 12:56 AM
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Originally Posted by Benjamino View Post
While the punctures under "normal" riding conditions can be predictably avoided with reinforced tires (such as Conti's Gatorskins, and Schwalbe's Marathon), there is still the issue of the pinch flat. This can conceivably be solved, but not without making serious concessions to performance.

Water always flows to the sea, and air pressure always wants to balance within an environment. Buy Gatorskins, keep 'em properly inflated and spend the research funds on AIDS education in Africa instead.
Uh, isn't "proper inflation" the solution to pinched flats? What kind of performance concessions do you incur when increasing pressure from 75 to 100psi???
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Old 10-29-08, 08:05 AM
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I've had very good luck with Panaracer T-Servs. There's always something out there that can pierce any tire. The answer needs to be an invulnerable tire. Like those black boxes that survive airplane crashes. What are they made out of? We should make tires out of that stuff.

Seriously, though, what if the answer wasn't so much making a tire that can't go flat but rather making a tire that is so easy to change you don't even need levers?
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Old 10-29-08, 03:14 PM
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Seems casing materials can be reinforced further. Add some carbon-fibre and ceramics for puncture protection. Perhaps have two kevlar belts around the circumference.
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Old 10-29-08, 06:51 PM
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Originally Posted by DannoXYZ View Post
Uh, isn't "proper inflation" the solution to pinched flats? What kind of performance concessions do you incur when increasing pressure from 75 to 100psi???
Hmmm, yes, my post is redundant. My point is that...um...there are better things to spend research money on...I think. I give up
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Old 01-14-09, 09:36 AM
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Originally Posted by Psydotek View Post
Make this for a bicycle and i'll be a buyer:

https://www.gizmag.com/go/3603/


So what's become of the Michelin "Tweel"? I don't think it would work on a bike anyway - too bulky, heavy, no bounce or life to it...
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Old 01-14-09, 11:29 AM
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airfree tires are just one of about four airless tire manufacturers. to date airless tires to not offer the ride quality of what sir dunlap came up with in his invention of the pnuematic inner tube.
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Old 01-14-09, 11:41 AM
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Originally Posted by noflattire2009 View Post
......knowhow about and experience with light and comfortable puncture free solutions for bikers?
At this point there aren't any tires that meet these three criteria. There are puncture-free (foam filled) tires but they are neither light or comfortable.

Here is link to another maker who claims their tires are puncture free: https://www.greentyre.co.uk/

A friend, who is not at all a performance rider, stays mostly on bike paths using a hybrid bike and loathes fixing flats, tried them. Even he found them so sluggish and heavy that he went back to conventional tires.
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Old 01-14-09, 12:07 PM
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Originally Posted by DannoXYZ View Post
Half-foam is an interesting idea. That would shield the tube from thorns, nails and glass that makes it through the casing. I'm placing my bets on some sort of flexible closed-cell foam.

I used to get 3-5 goathead flats a week on my commute to the bike-shop. Easy solution turned it into 1-2 a year.
The half foam idea is currently closest approximated I believe by the Schwalbe Marathon Plus tires with their protective thick inner rubber belt. In a recent thread several members indicated they were very puncture resistant while still having reasonable road feel and rolling characteristics, better than the Armadillo being claimed by some. I have ordered a pair to give them a try.

For run flat technology though you would want the foam on the inside radius of the tire, filling up the rim depression. This appears to be difficult to do with tube type bike tires. Using tubeless tire technology a dual air bladder as used on most Nascar tires might be able to at least provide some run flat ability.

As others have noted, as long as we are using air filled tires they can be damaged, letting the air out. From what I have read of the rolling resistance of airless tires, as well as weight and potential for rim damage, no thanks. If bike tires were as thick treaded as car tires there would be less flatting but they would weigh a ton. I doubt if riders would accept them.

Remember that any solution to punctures has to increase weight and rolling resistance minimally or the bicycle market will not accept it.
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