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Finally, a CO2 inflator that might be worth buying
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Brian Nystrom
Joined: 26 Jan 2004
Posts: 4355
Location: Nashua, NH

4/25/19 1:58 PM

Finally, a CO2 inflator that might be worth buying

This seems like just the thing for MTBs and gravel bikes:

https://bikerumor.com/2019/04/19/lezyne-tubeless-co2-blaster-fills-and-plugs-your-tire-in-one-move/

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dan emery
Joined: 11 Jan 2004
Posts: 6187
Location: Maine

4/25/19 4:03 PM

Interesting

Iíve only got about 120 mi on tubeless tires and no flats, but how easy is it to find the hole on the outside of the tire? By the side of the road that is.

Reminds me of when I worked at a gas station in college and we fixed car tire flats just by sticking a plug in the hole. Used kind of a needle as I recall, sort of like the olí Speedy Stitcher.

Iíll probably get one of these anyway. Iím all about simple.

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Sparky
Joined: 08 Dec 2003
Posts: 17202
Location: Portland, OR

4/25/19 4:10 PM

"but how easy is it to find the hole on the outside of the tire?"

Goes something like this:

You hear the air or feel squish of a low tire, stop and look for the wet spot and immediate spin it to the bottom so the pool of sealant can seal it up before the air goes out. Then pump it back to a usable pressure for the rest of the ride... At road pressures, it will loose a large percent of the air fast, depending on size and shape of the hole I have learned.

If a small puncture, you probably won't know until you happen to look and see a wet spot or a spot with crap stuck to the spot from road shit.

You'll need to put some more sealant every 6 months or so. Until you got 150 grams of the goo stuck in there...

Or once a year do the dirty task of cleaning it all out and start a fresh.

Suggest you bring a tube, and some latex gloves and a rag of some sort in case you gotta mop out the sealant to insert a tube in a non seal situation.

I have only had one non seal, and that was a tubular [tube inside] a chunk of glass around 5mm or so. It would seal until I pumped past 45-50 psi and poo out a latex plug.

I have not had the sealant bath yet. I see it being possible getting sealant all over the bike. Hopefully not on braking surfaces if you get my drift.

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Brian Nystrom
Joined: 26 Jan 2004
Posts: 4355
Location: Nashua, NH

4/26/19 8:16 AM

I see this primarily for gravel and MTB use, though it could be used on road tires if necessary. It's only going to be needed in the case of substantial cuts, as opposed to more mundane punctures that can be handled by sealant. Speaking of which, it can be a mess, but I keep my spare tube in an old cotton sock and carry a pair of nitrile gloves in my seat bag as well. I haven't needed to install a tube in a flat tubeless tire, but I'm prepared for that eventuality.

Although it probably doesn't apply to many of us, this could be a real boon for MTB racers, as it could permit flats to be fixed really quickly, particularly if it's carried assembled and ready to go.

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April
Joined: 13 Dec 2003
Posts: 6524
Location: Westchester/NYC

4/26/19 9:44 AM


quote:
this could be a real boon for MTB racers, as it could permit flats to be fixed really quickly, particularly if it's carried assembled and ready to go.

It applies for those who ride in the winter! (I don't ride below 50 any more, but I know a few here still do all the way down to 20's & 30's)

In the cold, it's paramount that the flat got fixed as quickly as possible.

Back in the days when I raced mountain bike, we had "tube changing practice party", in which we sacrificed some old tubes, by repeatedly taking it out, putting it back in, while watching racing videos! It became second nature to do all the steps without thinking. It's great fun too (mostly the mtn bike racing videos).

The proficiency came in handy when in group rides in the chilly early spring days when someone had flats. (though I'm a lot more rusty these days as I'm no longer "practicing" constantly)

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Brian Nystrom
Joined: 26 Jan 2004
Posts: 4355
Location: Nashua, NH

4/26/19 10:22 AM

Good point about winter, April! I should add that this would be great for tubeless fat bike tires, which can be really difficult to unseat in order to install a tube. It may take more than one CO2 cylinder to fill one, but that's no big deal.

On group rides, it's getting to the point that when someone flats, they just hand me their bike. ;-)

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April
Joined: 13 Dec 2003
Posts: 6524
Location: Westchester/NYC

4/26/19 12:44 PM


quote:
On group rides, it's getting to the point that when someone flats, they just hand me their bike. ;-)

Good job!

In the summer, I make a point of NOT helping. OK, here in New York Cycle Club, we get a lot of new riders who are athletic but not that experienced in cycling. I feel it's part of our club's mission to make these new riders self-sufficient all around riders when such opportunity arise.

I make an even stronger point if it's a woman! Inevitably, some guys will TRY to help, even if they aren't that good at it. If I'm leading the ride, I politely ask the male "helper(s)" to only talk, but allow the woman to actual DO the job. It usually works out better that way anyway.

But if it's cold, or threaten to rain, I would (again, politely) explain we need to get going quickly. Then grab the bike and start working on it.

There're a few other riders whom I know are quite good at this, I would work with them to get the job done quickly.

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Brian Nystrom
Joined: 26 Jan 2004
Posts: 4355
Location: Nashua, NH

4/26/19 2:58 PM

I have to admit that some of my willingness to fix flats is self-serving, so I can get back moving again quickly. However, I'm perfectly happy to step back and let the rider do it or coach them through the process.

I hope to do some basic maintenance clinics for our club this year and there's been considerable interest among those members who need them.

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dan emery
Joined: 11 Jan 2004
Posts: 6187
Location: Maine

4/26/19 4:19 PM

Hmmmm

Do you really go on group rides with people who canít fix flats? I know one woman who is a strong rider and usually rides with her husband who fixes the flats. Other than that, Iíve never really seen a flat on a group ride fixed by someone other than the rider. Iíd be embarrassed- when I flatted and crashed in the Dempsey Challenge, in the process fracturing ribs and puncturing a lung - the sag wagon stopped to help and I told them to go away, Iíll fix the flat myself.

With rare exceptions, do you want to sit on the wheel of people who canít fix flats?

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April
Joined: 13 Dec 2003
Posts: 6524
Location: Westchester/NYC

4/26/19 4:49 PM


quote:
Do you really go on group rides with people who canít fix flats?

How do they learn to ride if no experienced riders are willing to ride with them while they gain experience?

Not everyone has a husband to get started.

Moreover, even though they may not want to admit it, guys too will have a ďfirst timeĒ when it comes to fixing flats on the side of road.

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Sparky
Joined: 08 Dec 2003
Posts: 17202
Location: Portland, OR

4/26/19 5:07 PM

I fix others flats when I can suggest it with out being intrusive. I can tell you from experience some folks can change a flat 10x faster. I am one of these gorilla mitt fast tire changers. Tire irons, MEH.

I do let someone else pump... ;)

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dan emery
Joined: 11 Jan 2004
Posts: 6187
Location: Maine

4/26/19 5:35 PM

Well

I guess that may be true if you have a group ride designated for beginners. But in general, I think riders should have a basic level of competence before undertaking group rides, it can be dangerous to ride in a pack. Years ago I was a bit out of shape so I went with a club B ride. I sat in the pack about 10 minutes, said ďno thanksĒ and went to the front and stayed there. I donít want to sit behind riders who brake or stand up so their rear wheel slides backwards. By the same token I donít feel very sharp these days so Iím not anxious to get in a fast paceline myself.

I donít think fixing a flat is so hard that you need some cyclist to show you how to do it on the side of the road. I learned from books, now there is YouTube. Or you can go to clinics. And easy enough to practice.

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Sparky
Joined: 08 Dec 2003
Posts: 17202
Location: Portland, OR

4/26/19 5:43 PM

Some folks look like they are having a yard sale on the side of the road doing the deed. On the fast group rides, they do not wait. If they are trashing me to stay on, I magnanimously go back to help the fallen... ;)

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Brian Nystrom
Joined: 26 Jan 2004
Posts: 4355
Location: Nashua, NH

4/26/19 6:27 PM

Dan, not every cyclist is mechanically inclined. That really has nothing to do with their ability to ride. I've even heard of pro riders who are "mechanical invalids".

While our generation tended to be pretty self-sufficient, for many people these days, "fixing a flat" means calling someone to pick you up and take you to the bike shop, where a mechanic will actually fix it.

A few years back, I remember watching the strongest rider in our group explode three tubes while trying to fix a flat before a ride. I finally did it for him, so we could get on the road. I didn't hesitate to sit on his wheel, whenever I was capable of holding it. ;-)

I see much the same thing with the people I ride with now. Some are really good riders, but couldn't wrench their way out of a paper bag.

Conversely, being able to fix a flat doesn't mean you know how to ride in a group or a paceline.

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April
Joined: 13 Dec 2003
Posts: 6524
Location: Westchester/NYC

4/26/19 8:02 PM

Dan, Iím quite handy in mechanical things. More than many guys.

Iím also quite handy in electrical things too. Not many guys dare to touch anything electrical.

Iím also pretty handy with computer, which very few do.

But I donít do plumbing. I donít do woodwork.

My point? No one can be good at everything! One must choose what stuff to spend time to learn, to practice to be proficient. I wonít judge anyone who canít wire a socket or canít reinstall an operating system, or... canít fix a flat tire.

As for wheel sucking, I will judge it independently from flat fixing ability. Itís not hard to see how smoothly (or not) someone rides.

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dan emery
Joined: 11 Jan 2004
Posts: 6187
Location: Maine

4/26/19 8:16 PM

Ok

Iím not mechanically inclined at all. But I can fix a flat. Do you really think itís equivalent to wiring a socket?

I just donít see how you ride enough to be a good rider without learning to fix a flat (with rare exceptions like my friend).

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April
Joined: 13 Dec 2003
Posts: 6524
Location: Westchester/NYC

4/26/19 11:05 PM

Back to my early comments, someone has to ride with inexperienced riders. How else do they gain experience?

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Brian Nystrom
Joined: 26 Jan 2004
Posts: 4355
Location: Nashua, NH

4/27/19 4:01 AM

Everyone who rides should know how to fix a flat tire, as should everyone who drives , but we all know that's not the case, either.

I'm the kind of person who likes to understand how things work and how to fix/maintain them. I would rather buy the parts and tools - and acquire the necessary knowledge - than pay someone to fix something. However, it seems that people like me are a dying breed.

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KerryIrons
Joined: 12 Jan 2004
Posts: 2985
Location: Midland, MI

4/28/19 8:07 AM

Fixer

I too am one of those who jumps in to help fix flats. It's all about getting going again rather than having a spectator experience. And yes, it appears several people who show up for group rides are, let's say "barely competent" at fixing a flat. I wonder if they ever ride by themselves but rather rely on someone in the group stepping forward to do the job.

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April
Joined: 13 Dec 2003
Posts: 6524
Location: Westchester/NYC

4/28/19 10:01 AM

Wondering?

If I hadnít raced (or just rode) mountain bike, I doubt I would be too ďcompetentĒ in fixing flats.

I averaged 1 flats every 2-3 years (on road). The longest stretch without flat was 5 years!

That simply wasnít sufficient practice to stay ďcompetentĒ. ;)

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dfcas
Joined: 11 Jan 2004
Posts: 2590
Location: hillbilly heaven

4/28/19 10:27 AM

We used to have a ride here where it was traditional for someone else to fix your flat. I've had my flat repaired by a multi time national champion.

Alas, it was a winter ride advertised as a no drop ride and please bring a bike with tires greater than 30mm since the terrain varied and probably would include some fairly rough stuff. The hammerheads would bring a road bike with the lighest 23 mm tires trying to get a speed advantage so they could drop people. This resulted in a ton of flats in the cold weather and eventually the ride fell apart. I got tired of it pretty early and so did a lot of others.

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Brian Nystrom
Joined: 26 Jan 2004
Posts: 4355
Location: Nashua, NH

4/28/19 5:18 PM

"That simply wasnít sufficient practice to stay ďcompetentĒ. ;)"

Having spent 8+ years in the bike biz, I don't think I can become incompetent again. I kinda fix flats on auto-pilot. ;-)

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Sparky
Joined: 08 Dec 2003
Posts: 17202
Location: Portland, OR

4/28/19 5:49 PM

I wonder with my contacts in how long before I screw up fixing a flat. Gotta start bringing readers along. Cant see shit closer than 36" very well any more...

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Brian Nystrom
Joined: 26 Jan 2004
Posts: 4355
Location: Nashua, NH

4/29/19 5:43 AM

Fortunately, fixing a flat doesn't require a lot of fine detail work and I have long arms, so I can get by without reading glasses. I still carry a pair with me, just in case...

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Sparky
Joined: 08 Dec 2003
Posts: 17202
Location: Portland, OR

4/29/19 10:20 AM

"fixing a flat doesn't require a lot of fine detail work"

Except perhaps when using tubes on tubeless ready rims perhaps. ;)

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