Going through 1-2 tubes a week

Andylos
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Going through 1-2 tubes a week

Postby Andylos » Mon Mar 20, 2017 8:44 pm

Hi,

I am using Tioga inner tubes and ride around 200-300km a week (tyre is 700x25c Michellin). I seem to be going through 1-2 tubes a week. They dont blow, however when i get to my bike in the morning or even back to it in the afternoon after a morning ride, the tyre is flat. It occurs pretty evenly on both front and back tyres. Ill pump the tube back up to test and it goes flat again within a few hours.

Any thoughts/ideas would be appreciated, im thinking i might try a different brand of tube.

Cheers

Andy

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DavidS
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Re: Going through 1-2 tubes a week

Postby DavidS » Mon Mar 20, 2017 8:58 pm

Wow, that is weird.

Have you checked to see if there is a hole in the tube? I think you need to work out why the tyres are going down.

I ride about 230 to 250KMs a week and have had 2 punctures this year, which is a bad year since I only had one last year in total.

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Duck!
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Re: Going through 1-2 tubes a week

Postby Duck! » Mon Mar 20, 2017 8:59 pm

Check the tyres for sharp objects which could be causing punctures. Also check your rim tapes; if they're getting old & blistered into the spoke holes they'll allow the tube to stretch in as well, causing thin spots that are also more likely to rupture. Finally ensure the nut on the tip of the valve is properly done up; Presta valves rely on air pressure rather than mechanical closure (a spring) to close the valve, and can be prone to leaking if not properly closed with the nut.
I had a thought, but it got run over as it crossed my mind.

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Re: Going through 1-2 tubes a week

Postby ironhanglider » Mon Mar 20, 2017 9:01 pm

You need to find where the air is leaking from first. Then see if you can trace the cause. You may need to use some water to identify the leak. If you don't deal with the cause, whatever it is will simply puncture the next tube you put in.

I suspect that you have something sharp but small embedded in your tyre, and that it takes a little while to work its way through the tube.

BTW this is why many people line the maker's mark up with the valve when they fit the tyre. If you know that the hole is e.g. 20cm from the valve then there are only two areas on the tyre you need to look.

Learn how to patch tubes. A tube with a good patch job is indistinguishable in use from a new tube. I have been known to swap one of my spares for someone else's tube whilst out on the trail, so that they can get home. I am happy to use patched tubes.

Cheers,

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RonK
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Re: Going through 1-2 tubes a week

Postby RonK » Mon Mar 20, 2017 9:05 pm

Rim tape.
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Andylos
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Re: Going through 1-2 tubes a week

Postby Andylos » Mon Mar 20, 2017 9:06 pm

Thanks for the replies guys.

I have checked the tube in water and there is a tiny hole. I have checked the tyres multiple times with cotton wool on the inside and cant find anything sharp.

When you refer to rim tape, is that on the inside of the rim protecting the spokes coming through? If so, is there specific tape i need to use to replace it?

Thanks in advance

Cheers

Andy

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Re: Going through 1-2 tubes a week

Postby ironhanglider » Mon Mar 20, 2017 9:09 pm

Is the hole on the inside of the tube?

Cheers,

Cameron
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Andylos
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Re: Going through 1-2 tubes a week

Postby Andylos » Mon Mar 20, 2017 9:13 pm

ironhanglider wrote:Is the hole on the inside of the tube?

Cheers,

Cameron


Looks to be slightly to the outside of the tube. When i replace the tube,im guessing it takes its natural form when pumped up and isnt twisted slightly etc.

Ive checked the tyre and cant see/feel anything sharp.

This is occurring on both front and rear tyres, maybe the quality of the tube??

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Re: Going through 1-2 tubes a week

Postby Duck! » Mon Mar 20, 2017 9:14 pm

No, something has made the hole.
I had a thought, but it got run over as it crossed my mind.

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Re: Going through 1-2 tubes a week

Postby DavidS » Mon Mar 20, 2017 9:19 pm

Duck! wrote:No, something has made the hole.


Yeah, this.

Good to hear you found the hole, should make diagnosis easier.

Change the rim tape, it is pretty cheap and worth doing.

Maybe change the tyre and see what happens, also check the inside of the rim, maybe there is something rough somewhere on the inside of the rim.

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Andylos
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Re: Going through 1-2 tubes a week

Postby Andylos » Mon Mar 20, 2017 9:22 pm

Thanks again guys,

what ive learnt from this is ill line up the tyres makers mark to the valve.

I still think its weird that its happening evenly to both front and rear wheels

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Re: Going through 1-2 tubes a week

Postby ironhanglider » Mon Mar 20, 2017 9:41 pm

Andylos wrote:Thanks again guys,

what ive learnt from this is ill line up the tyres makers mark to the valve.

I still think its weird that its happening evenly to both front and rear wheels


I'm tipping that it is glass shards in both tyres. When they are small enough they can play un-funny games of peek-a-boo within the tyre carcass. The tyre behaves slightly differently when it is under pressure so sometimes the offender will retreat back into the tread when you pull the tyre off to look at it.

Try a close examination from the outside of the tyre, with every nick or cut in the tyre try to flex it open. Often there will be a tiny bit of glass at the bottom. (Now with an exact location you can check the inside of the tyre to see if it is the offender) Use a strong, pointy something to dig the glass out. Keep searching, because if there is one bit of glass there are often several others. I do this every few hundred km and it is rare to not find something.

Good luck.

Cheers,

Cameron
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Re: Going through 1-2 tubes a week

Postby WyvernRH » Mon Mar 20, 2017 9:48 pm

[quote="ironhanglider"
Try a close examination from the outside of the tyre, with every nick or cut in the tyre try to flex it open. Often there will be a tiny bit of glass at the bottom. (Now with an exact location you can check the inside of the tyre to see if it is the offender) Use a strong, pointy something to dig the glass out. Keep searching, because if there is one bit of glass there are often several others. I do this every few hundred km and it is rare to not find something.[/quote]

Ooh I don't want to ride where you ride if you pick up that much glass!

But - what he said - it is good advice. If a finger tip search of the inside doesn't find the culprit search every little slit on the outside and see what is at the bottom.

Richard

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Re: Going through 1-2 tubes a week

Postby g-boaf » Mon Mar 20, 2017 10:07 pm

I'm going to suggest a small sharp shard of glass or a tiny little bit of wire has got stuck in the tyre.

And for future, try those Mr Tuffy tyre liners. They won't stop punctures completely, but they sure as hell do prevent quite a lot of them. You still have to watch for glass and other rubbish, but it's less of a worry.

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Re: Going through 1-2 tubes a week

Postby human909 » Mon Mar 20, 2017 10:08 pm

My tyres inevitably have plenty of chips of glass in them. I'd be surprised to find bike tyres without such chips. But most don't make it through the protective layers, they just sit in the outer layers of rubber.

I go through about 3 tubes a year with 100 or so kilometers a week average.

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Re: Going through 1-2 tubes a week

Postby Thoglette » Mon Mar 20, 2017 11:46 pm

My tyres inevitably have plenty of chips from glass in them. But none seem to make it through despite the lack of protective layers.

I go through a tube every few years, mostly due to snake bites and bad tyre installs.
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Re: Going through 1-2 tubes a week

Postby User Name » Tue Mar 21, 2017 5:29 am

Which Tioga tubes are they? I had a bad run of flats a long time ago with the very light Tiogas (70g) and Continentals (55g) that seemed to be caused tiny scuffing on the tube, either from movement in the tyre, or installing, or manufacturing, or whatever. The light scuffs thinned the rubber, eventually leading to tiny holes within the scuff. I was using high pressures back then (probably 140psi -- silly), which wouldn't have helped. It was happening 2 or 3 times a week, and they were definitely not caused by puncturing

I started a thread about it the time, and got this good reply:

"Very thin, light tubes make great demands on the rubber sheet and sometimes you get a tube with those scuff marks. Scuffs 0.005" deep on an uninflated tube can propagate into pinholes at 150psi when the tube thickness starts out about 0.050" and goes to 0.025" thick at 150psi.

I had a 0.075"-thick tube that had large numbers of tiny (3mm) scratches that looked like Nike swooshes. I finally tossed it after the 7th patch. Damn thing would hold air all nite then go down 20miles into a ride, always at a new site. Stick with
90-120gram tubes and avoid the misery.


But, if you're not using very light tubes, all this is probably irrelevant :)
Last edited by User Name on Tue Mar 21, 2017 4:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Going through 1-2 tubes a week

Postby Trevtassie » Tue Mar 21, 2017 8:23 am

Tioga tubes aren't even good for slingshot rubber... they get them made under contract by whoever offers the lowest price at the time. Sometimes they get it right, often they get it wrong. See the couple of threads about whack Tioga sizing.

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Re: Going through 1-2 tubes a week

Postby rangersac » Tue Mar 21, 2017 8:46 am

g-boaf wrote:I'm going to suggest a small sharp shard of glass or a tiny little bit of wire has got stuck in the tyre.


I'm betting fine wire. I had exactly the same thing happen a year or so ago, and it took me several searches to find the offending object. Feel around the inside of your tire, and inspect every bump no matter how minor it is by inverting the tire at the point and stretching it so any cut or pinprick opens up.
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Re: Going through 1-2 tubes a week

Postby eeksll » Tue Mar 21, 2017 12:23 pm

User Name wrote:Which Tioga tubes are they? I had a bad run of flats a long time ago with the very light Tiogas (70g) and Continentals (55g) that seemed to be caused tiny scuffing on the tube, either from movement in the tyre, or installing, or manufacturing, or whatever. The light scuffs thinned the rubber, eventually leading to tiny holes within the scuff. I was using high pressures back then (probably 140psi -- silly), which wouldn't have helped. It was happening 2 or 3 times a week, and they were definitely not caused by puncturing

I started a thread about it the time, and got this good reply:

"Very thin, light tubes make great demands on the rubber sheet and sometimes you get a tube with those scuff marks. Scuffs 0.005" deep on an uninflated tube can propagate into pinholes at 150psi when the tube thickness starts out about 0.050" and goes to 0.025" thick at 150psi.

I had a 0.075"-thick tube that had large numbers of tiny (3mm) scratches that looked like Nike swooshes. I finally tossed it after the 7th patch. Damn thing would hold air all nite then go down 20miles into a ride, always at a new site. Stick with
90-120gram tubes and avoid the misery.


Anyway, if you're not using very light, forget all this :)


I would think high pressure is going to deflate quicker with or without holes.

Also the tyre is the maximum size of the tube from 20 psi all the way to 200+psi (until it blows off). Those holes propagated from scuffs will be the same size pretty much with all pressures.

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Re: Going through 1-2 tubes a week

Postby Andylos » Tue Mar 21, 2017 1:24 pm

i should add, i run my tires around 120psi

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Re: Going through 1-2 tubes a week

Postby Nate » Tue Mar 21, 2017 2:22 pm

RonK wrote:Rim tape.


yeap - my money's on the rim tape too.
get some nice Velox cloth stuff.

cheap tubes? been doing that for a decade & no issues.

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Re: Going through 1-2 tubes a week

Postby bychosis » Tue Mar 21, 2017 4:19 pm

1st step is to work out where the holes are in the tubes. If it is the inner section, look at the rim tape. Outer, look at the tyre. Once you determined where the hole is inspect the rim/tyre for a cause. Make sure you check the two possible locations in case the tube has been flipped around.

If you always put the tyre logo where the valve is it will make it easier to determine where the problem is, assuming it is tyre related.

When I started commuting along a concrete share path I got heaps of punctures from the steel reinforcing in the path. Steel fibres were exposed from wear in the path and they then got caught in the tyre and caused the puncture. I started using tyre liners and the punctures ceased, but at times I've pulled half a dozen fibres out of the tyre that would have caused a flat if not for the liners (Mr Tuffy).

120psi sounds too high.
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Re: Going through 1-2 tubes a week

Postby Kalgrm » Tue Mar 21, 2017 4:32 pm

I'd also suggest you patch your tubes and keep using them. The patch will help protect the tube and it'll save you buying tubes in bulk.

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Re: Going through 1-2 tubes a week

Postby g-boaf » Tue Mar 21, 2017 8:31 pm

bychosis wrote:1st step is to work out where the holes are in the tubes. If it is the inner section, look at the rim tape. Outer, look at the tyre. Once you determined where the hole is inspect the rim/tyre for a cause. Make sure you check the two possible locations in case the tube has been flipped around.

If you always put the tyre logo where the valve is it will make it easier to determine where the problem is, assuming it is tyre related.

When I started commuting along a concrete share path I got heaps of punctures from the steel reinforcing in the path. Steel fibres were exposed from wear in the path and they then got caught in the tyre and caused the puncture. I started using tyre liners and the punctures ceased, but at times I've pulled half a dozen fibres out of the tyre that would have caused a flat if not for the liners (Mr Tuffy).

120psi sounds too high.


And 120psi is the limit indicated on the wheels I have. 105-110psi is what I normally use without bother. I went the 25mm low pressure way, the only benefit was the ride quality, otherwise it was slower. All this talk of faster, rolling better. Didn't happen.

100-110psi should be fine. With liners in, rim tape checked and a search for offending debris, that pressure shouldn't normally cause grief.

As for the inner tubes, I've found the Specialized tubes (the lightest ones) to be surprisingly good.

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