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How does fixing a flat tire affect your rides?

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How does fixing a flat tire affect your rides?

Old 07-18-20, 06:02 PM
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DreamRider85
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How does fixing a flat tire affect your rides?

I'm a little bummed because I was gonna go on a long bike ride today. I got 2 flats in my front tire in the last month in the same spot and just before that I had went a whole year and a half without getting any flats. Just really weird how at times I don't get flats for months and other times they seem to happen in spurts.

Now, when I use a mini pump on the road to fix a flat, it doesn't get my tire completely firm. How many pumps would you say it takes? I did about 250 pumps and it still didn't seem very hard. So I didn't finish my ride, I just headed home to pump it up.

Oh by the way, do you leave your main pump in your car or just in the garage?

How does getting a flat affect your ride? Do you finish what you set out to do? What if you're a long ride? 30 miles, 50 miles, 70 miles, etc.. Would getting a flat make you just ride back to your car or home? I asked the guy at the bike shop what he would recommend and he said he'd just ride home. It's a little discouraging especially when I committed to spending half a day riding.

But what if you're doing some kind of a weekend tour with a group? Do you think just fixing a flat is going to be sufficient enough to continue the long rides? How do most go about this?

I just thought I'd get your perspectives and opinions on this topic.
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Old 07-18-20, 06:16 PM
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First, I think you need a better pump to bring with you on rides. I never found mini pumps to be adequate for continuing a ride, only for going home. Get a Topeak Mountain Morph or similar, with a gauge. I've also read good things about Lezine pumps.

Your ride depends on having enough air in the tires. You should be able to change the tube and reinflate within 15 minutes, even if you're slow and out of practice like me. I had my first flat in four years last March.
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Old 07-18-20, 06:27 PM
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If im not far out, I'll return to my source of starting point to use the pump that does it easier & faster than the on bike pump.
then I continue on with the ride.

If I'm far out, I'll pump it to the target psi & finish out my journey.
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Old 07-18-20, 06:32 PM
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Get some CO2 if you can't pump enough air. If you use fat tires or are overweight and need high pressure, use large or multiple cartridges.
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Old 07-18-20, 06:55 PM
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CO2 cartidge(s), + spare tube(s), and a good mini-pump (e.g. Lezyne) suited for purpose. Not an issue.

Get a flat? Remove wheel/tire off rim/check for 'the thing'/change tube/inflate/treplace wheel, carry on with ride. This is not an issue for any half-decent cyclist, even someone like me who is (really) mechanically inept. Even I can change out a tube/carry on with a ride. Takes me about 10 minutes (I'm slow), with thru-axles. Used to be quicker with quick-release wheels.

What "perspective" could there possibly be? If nothing else, anyone doing distance rides of any kind, solo or group, can and should be self-sufficient and capable, if of nothing else, of fixing a flat 'on the road'. It's pretty simple.

/thread
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Old 07-18-20, 07:03 PM
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Originally Posted by badger1 View Post
CO2 cartidge(s), + spare tube(s), and a good mini-pump (e.g. Lezyne) suited for purpose. Not an issue.

Get a flat? Remove wheel/tire off rim/check for 'the thing'/change tube/inflate/treplace wheel, carry on with ride. This is not an issue for any half-decent cyclist, even someone like me who is (really) mechanically inept. Even I can change out a tube/carry on with a ride. Takes me about 10 minutes (I'm slow), with thru-axles. Used to be quicker with quick-release wheels.

What "perspective" could there possibly be? If nothing else, anyone doing distance rides of any kind, solo or group, can and should be self-sufficient and capable, if of nothing else, of fixing a flat 'on the road'. It's pretty simple.

/thread
You'd be amazed by how many people are reliant on strangers for those mentioned things. Typically, they expect that you will just stop what you are doing to help them from their lack of planning.
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Old 07-18-20, 07:13 PM
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If you're going out with a group, take more than you think you'll need. Take two tubes. Take a few CO2s. Somebody is gonna flat, you just cross your fingers that it won't be you.

I had a tire-killer on this past Thursday. Big cut, just over 1/4" long, only a smidge of it in the tread, most of it right in the sidewall. Hole was so big the sealant didn't even try to come out. Pulled to the side, stuck in two Dynaplugs, squirted in the emergency bottle of sealant, turned the puncture site to the 6 o'clock position, dumped in a 16g CO2. Total stopped time about 8 minutes, finished the remaining 15 miles on my ride. Tire is shot (already had another plug in it from a previous incident.) I replaced it this morning. As I'm tubeless, that's what a "flat" is. Small punctures don't happen. It's tire-killers, or it's trouble-free.

I've only had one flat that warranted that, and the hole was so big I could put the tip of my index finger in it and feel the rim tape.

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Old 07-18-20, 07:30 PM
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Originally Posted by DreamRider85 View Post

But what if you're doing some kind of a weekend tour with a group? Do you think just fixing a flat is going to be sufficient enough to continue the long rides? How do most go about this?

.
Change the tube, pump it up and continue riding.
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Old 07-18-20, 07:31 PM
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If the two flats were at the same spot on the tire (as opposed to the same spot on the road) there is likely still something in the tire,

a hole in the casing the the tube can work into, or a problem with the rim tape.
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Old 07-18-20, 07:43 PM
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There are things that go wrong on rides. The most likely thing to go wrong is a puncture. I can handle that. The ride goes on. Patches, tube(s), C02, Pump.
Next up is tire damage. I always carry a boot, and on rides over 200k I carry a spare tire. So usually I can handle that.
On 400k or longer brevets, I'll carry extra tubes - usually 3 total.

Every other failure is far less likely, but I carry various things that essentially tell the story of failures I've either experienced or have seen others experience. It's almost religion.

Cheers
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Old 07-18-20, 07:47 PM
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I haven’t had a flat on any of my road/gravel rides this year but I used to get them every so often downhill biking. It seemed to just be part of the sport and most rides you wouldn’t but you had to be prepared. It certainly never seemed like a discouraging thing to flat. Just part of the adventure. Usually you’d just take a break and chat with your friends while fixing your bike.
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Old 07-18-20, 07:52 PM
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Originally Posted by badger1 View Post
CO2 cartidge(s), + spare tube(s), and a good mini-pump (e.g. Lezyne) suited for purpose. Not an issue.

Get a flat? Remove wheel/tire off rim/check for 'the thing'/change tube/inflate/treplace wheel, carry on with ride. This is not an issue for any half-decent cyclist, even someone like me who is (really) mechanically inept. Even I can change out a tube/carry on with a ride. Takes me about 10 minutes (I'm slow), with thru-axles. Used to be quicker with quick-release wheels.

What "perspective" could there possibly be? If nothing else, anyone doing distance rides of any kind, solo or group, can and should be self-sufficient and capable, if of nothing else, of fixing a flat 'on the road'. It's pretty simple.

/thread
Originally Posted by wolfchild View Post
Change the tube, pump it up and continue riding.
That's true. But I was just wondering if it would be safe to do that, when pumping it up doesn't get you as much air as going back home and using the real pump.
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Old 07-18-20, 08:26 PM
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Portable pumps are real pumps. I use no more than 85psi on any of my tires and can get close enough to that with the Topeak Morphs (Mini, Mountain and Road) that I have alternated using the last decade or more. Currently carrying Mini Morph.
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Old 07-18-20, 08:35 PM
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I carry all that flat-fixin' stuff in my saddle bag for a reason. No way a puncture is going to ruin my ride.
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Old 07-18-20, 08:47 PM
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If your bike can carry it, seriously consider a traditional frame pump rather than a mini pump. Good frame pumps will give you full road pressure in 100 strokes or less. The French Zephal HPX is as good as any, costs around $40 and will last you decades.

That we still ride bikes just as dependent on proper air pressure as bikes 130 years ago and that many modern bikes cannot carry a decent pump to provide that air, well let's just say if I scratched my head over that one I'd be bald now.

Ben
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Old 07-18-20, 08:56 PM
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I fix it and ride on. A lot of my rides have a destination and a schedule. For instance, my spouse is into running, she'll go to some event by car, and I'll ride out to meet her. So there's no turning back. And Murphy's Law says you'll flat when you're exactly half way.

Flats are pretty rare for me, with puncture resistant tires. The bike that I ride for longer distances, 65 psi is enough. And many of us inflate to higher pressure than we strictly need.

A high quality pump is important. The ultimate pressure you can achieve depends on both the diameter of the bore relative to your strength, and the compression ratio of the piston. I would actually be better off with a fatter pump for my bike. These days, bug spray is part of my puncture kit.
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Old 07-18-20, 09:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Gresp15C View Post
I fix it and ride on. A lot of my rides have a destination and a schedule. For instance, my spouse is into running, she'll go to some event by car, and I'll ride out to meet her. So there's no turning back. And Murphy's Law says you'll flat when you're exactly half way.

Flats are pretty rare for me, with puncture resistant tires. The bike that I ride for longer distances, 65 psi is enough. And many of us inflate to higher pressure than we strictly need.

A high quality pump is important. The ultimate pressure you can achieve depends on both the diameter of the bore relative to your strength, and the compression ratio of the piston. I would actually be better off with a fatter pump for my bike. These days, bug spray is part of my puncture kit.
Thanks for the info. Tell me about bug spray. I was going to ask about that too. I've been getting bugs on me lately. Do you just spray it on your face on arms, the same as you would with sun screen? Do you do both sun screen and bug spray?
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Old 07-18-20, 09:56 PM
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I got my first flat this morning, and was back on the road within 10min. I was worried I would mess it up as I never practiced patching a puncture but it was really easy. I used a tiny Bontrager pump and pumped for a few min until it felt about as hard as my rear tire (90psi), and when I got home I checked.... I only got it up to 70 but couldn’t tell the difference.

The mini pump was kind of a PITA... considering bringing along a CO2 cartridge too from now on.
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Old 07-18-20, 09:57 PM
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Originally Posted by DreamRider85 View Post
I got 2 flats in my front tire in the last month.
It sounds to me like you didn't find and eliminate the cause of your first flat. Until you do, you are doomed to having recuring frequent punctures.

Steel belted radial car tires leave a trail of tiny little wires on the roads. They're only about 1/4 inch long and will sometimes hide in your bike tire. They can be the very dickens to find and, after you do find it, they can be even harder to root out. I don't get very many punctures but a high percentage of them in recent years have been from radial wires. I've recently added a needle nose pliers to my on the bike tool kit just for dealing with those little wires.
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Old 07-18-20, 10:06 PM
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I get to continue, of course..
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Old 07-18-20, 10:53 PM
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I usually find what caused the flat by inspecting tube and tire, patch the tube, and carry on with my ride. Even having a tire gouged by glass bottle on road hasn't stopped me from doing a 50 mile ride. Just fold up a dollar bill over hole in tire makes for a good fix until you can get finished and home.
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Old 07-18-20, 11:17 PM
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Originally Posted by DreamRider85 View Post
Thanks for the info. Tell me about bug spray. I was going to ask about that too. I've been getting bugs on me lately. Do you just spray it on your face on arms, the same as you would with sun screen? Do you do both sun screen and bug spray?
In my region of Wisconsin, it's mostly mosquitoes that are the problem. I have a tiny pocket sized bottle of Deep Woods Off in my seat bag, though there are other brands of the same stuff. Usually a couple spritzes on my arms, legs, and the back of my neck is enough. I don't have to be totally coated with it. I tend to use it sparingly and only when absolutely needed, so I don't put it on before a ride. I doubt that it's entirely good for you. If it's other bugs and they don't bite, I ignore them. Once I'm back in motion, the breeze pretty much solves the problem.

The active ingredient of Off is DEET, which is predictably controversial, and there are brands that use natural oils instead, FWIW. A lot has been written on this topic.
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Old 07-19-20, 12:10 AM
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Some riders don't like things hanging off their bikes, like saddle bags with spare parts or even a pump. I have no problem with this. I have a full size saddle bag with the a tube, patch kit and the tools to do most road side repairs, also have a longer hand pump that's good to 100 psi with a tube, and foot pedal.
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Old 07-19-20, 06:05 AM
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How does fixing a flat tire affect your rides?

I know for a fact that if I don't fix the flat tire it WILL affect my rides.....
I carry a spare tube, small patch kit, micro pump, multi-tool, and a crescent wrench......JIC
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Old 07-19-20, 06:22 AM
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Originally Posted by DreamRider85 View Post
That's true. But I was just wondering if it would be safe to do that, when pumping it up doesn't get you as much air as going back home and using the real pump.
Don't overthink tire pressures....You don't need to pump your tires to exact numbers. All you need to do is to pump them enough to prevent pinch flats... I run my tires between 40-80 psi depending on the terrain that I am riding, a good quality mini pump can easily get up to about 85psi.
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