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CO2 First Use: Fail. Why?

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CO2 First Use: Fail. Why?

Old 07-10-13, 01:43 PM
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TromboneAl
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CO2 First Use: Fail. Why?

I bought the CO2 inflator shown here,



with these cartridges.



I tried it out in the garage, and it worked fine.

Yesterday, had a flat, and it failed.

I put in the cartridge and screwed in the bottom part, slowly. I had the safety on. There was hissing and "coldness" and when I realized I was losing CO2, I quickly put it on the valve, but only got it to about 50 psi (I pumped it up the rest of the way with the Lezyne pump).

When I got home I tried another, screwing it in a bit faster. It worked, but some gas still leaked out.

Should I be screwing it in really fast? Is there something else I should be doing?

Thanks,

Al
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Old 07-10-13, 01:51 PM
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The way these have worked for me is like this: screw the cartridge all the way in...no co2 will escape....then back the cartridge out just until you hear the co2 filling the tube. That should be it. BTW once it is working you can screw it in all the way if you want to stop it again.
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Old 07-10-13, 02:04 PM
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I think I figured it out. Although it's designed to work with 16 or 12 g unthreaded cartridges, the latter are really a little too short. As a result, when you screw in the bottom part, it doesn't push the cartridge far enough in.

I put a small washer in the base of the bottom part, and it has worked fine for a few cartridges that I've experimented with.
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Old 07-10-13, 02:23 PM
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Never tried CO2 but I lend my pump out to plenty on the trail and road who have CO2 and it has failed. I'll keep with the hard way and get fitter and worn out doing it but at least I will get home.
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Old 07-10-13, 02:39 PM
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I do the opposite. I lend out my roadmorph but use the simple and easy CO2 pump for myself.
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Old 07-10-13, 03:14 PM
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Get one of these. https://www.amazon.com/Genuine-Innova...d_sim_sbs_sg_4 It's simple and bullet proof. Only disadvantage is that it only works with he more expensive threaded cartridges.

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Old 07-11-13, 09:05 AM
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Failed CO2 has in the past sent me knocking door to door asking to borrow a bike pump.

On any longer ride, I want to be prepared for multiple flats, means multiple CO2 cartridges which plus inflator weigh more than a pump.

I now stick with my old Silica Imperio/Campy head pump. I pick them up for $25 in the used bins. Plus you can't stick a CO2 cartridge in an Italian's spokes.
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Old 07-11-13, 09:49 AM
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Hope you have it figured out. Some of these little inflators are more reliable than others. Try using your small pump first. I have learned that on my 25c tires I use my Lezyne for 25 pumps followed by a 16gr cartridge and I'm perfect.
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Old 07-11-13, 10:54 AM
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The 12g cartridge will be perfect for my 700x23c tires, as long as I don't get any leakage.
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Old 07-11-13, 11:38 AM
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Originally Posted by TromboneAl View Post
The 12g cartridge will be perfect for my 700x23c tires, as long as I don't get any leakage.
Al, I carry both a Co2 setup and a pump. The pump size and style vary depending on the bike. My "fast" bike sports a four inch carbon mini-pump. My commuter sports a Topeak Road Morph, and my classic Colnago Master XL sports a frame pump. I use the Co2 setup when the weather is bad or I'm in a big hurry. They are quick and easy. But the pump is always there if something doesn't work. Some might call me paranoid for carrying both.
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Old 07-11-13, 12:15 PM
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One of the riders had a CO2 failure today so we used my set-up to come to the rescue.
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Old 07-11-13, 12:56 PM
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So far no failures while using CO2.

The first time the cartridge/device got so cold I needed to wait 10 minutes to remove. I've since added a short piece of 'heater hose' that insulates the fingers from the cartridge. Some have recommended using 'duck tape' but that's a waste of good tape.
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Old 07-11-13, 12:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Ali_Pine View Post
So far no failures while using CO2.

The first time the cartridge/device got so cold I needed to wait 10 minutes to remove. I've since added a short piece of 'heater hose' that insulates the fingers from the cartridge. Some have recommended using 'duck tape' but that's a waste of good tape.
You can use pieces cut from old tubes to fit over the CO2 cartridge.
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Old 07-11-13, 01:55 PM
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I spent a half hour yesterday reading reviews on Amazon of CO2 inflators, and the main, maybe only, reason for failure was improper use. Failure to close the valve before screwing in the cylinder was the main one.
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Old 07-11-13, 01:58 PM
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Originally Posted by Clawed View Post
I spent a half hour yesterday reading reviews on Amazon of CO2 inflators, and the main, maybe only, reason for failure was improper use. Failure to close the valve before screwing in the cylinder was the main one.
It is not all that easy when you have ridden 95 miles and are on a road with no shoulder, in The Hot Sun.
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Old 07-11-13, 05:21 PM
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Never had any problems or failures with CO2 systems. I prefer the screw- on style with a triggerless chuck. For me, they are much easier to use and to control the air release.

I must admit that when I bought my first chuck and cylinder, I had no idea how to use it. After the guy at the LBS showed me how to use it, that was it. No problems since.
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Old 07-11-13, 06:15 PM
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Been using Co2 since 2004. Still have the original 'Inovations' chuck that uses the threaded cartridges. Never had a problem with them all these years, I just make extra sure I change the tube out right and to not screw up.
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Old 07-11-13, 06:21 PM
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Originally Posted by 10 Wheels View Post
It is not all that easy when you have ridden 95 miles and are on a road with no shoulder, in The Hot Sun.
Well, there's your problem.
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Old 07-12-13, 10:26 AM
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What's the yellow thing?
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Old 07-12-13, 11:25 AM
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Originally Posted by woodcraft View Post
What's the yellow thing?
it's apparently one of the most inappropriately shaped tire irons I have ever seen
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Old 07-12-13, 02:49 PM
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Interesting point posted on my local clubs message board tonight.

fixed flat in dark last night on way back from TT, then burnt my fingers on CO2 cannister - I'm blaming the recreation ground car park


Various comments about using pumps but several members have come across this problem though not as severe. This one required a plaster afterwards as in pulling the CO2 canister away- the burn started leaking blood.

I can remember seeing an MTB race where someone used a CO2 canister and the same happened. Was glad to hear he spoke the same language as I would have used in the same situation.
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Old 07-12-13, 05:08 PM
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Originally Posted by woodcraft View Post
What's the yellow thing?
It's a Quikstik -- it works great for me.


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Old 07-12-13, 05:11 PM
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I've played with/wasted 4 cartridges experimenting. Three of them leaked CO2 very slowly, but still worked OK. Is that common? That is, you screw it in, and it's not totally quiet.
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Old 07-12-13, 08:30 PM
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That bikeman guy scares me.
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Old 07-12-13, 08:45 PM
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Problems with CO2 cartridges are due either to not quite having the knack of the inflator holder you are using or there being something wrong with it. Some have no kind of valve at all. You simply screw the C02 on quickly and then after you push it onto the presta valve you unscrew it slightly to start it inflating. Others may have a valve or trigger. Some of them use unthreaded C02 cartridges. If your cartridge doesn't quite fit you might get some leakage. Not all C02 cartridges fit perfectly in some of those non-threaded inflators which is why I have moved to threaded inflators that either simply unscrew slightly or have a simple round valve to open slightly. Once you have inserted a C02 cartridge you might as well use it entirely. These aren't precision instruments. You can't count on inserting a cartridge and leaving it in place for a week. Once I've punctured the cartridge I use it. I never carry a cartridge that is already inserted.
They get super cold so you have to be careful handling them. Some come with a rubber gasket on them to keep you from freezing your fingers.
Be aware that C02 will diffuse through an inner tube more quickly than air. You should deflate your tire entirely once you get home and re-inflate with air. I think I even read somewhere that even after a few hours you may need to add air but somebody else might chime in with a real explanation of how long C02 will keep a road tire from dropping down 10psi.

Last edited by digibud; 07-12-13 at 09:25 PM.
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