Bicycle inner tubes as emergency spares

Choice and preparation

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Busta
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Bicycle inner tubes as emergency spares

Post by Busta » Tue Jan 22, 2019 1:49 pm

Following on from and interesting post on the Facebook group by Fab Babar about the potential of carrying a small bicycle inner tube as an emergency spare.

Here's a few pictures of my first test with a 24x1.5-2.5 tube in a 21-90/90 front tyre. With just a few psi of pressure the tube easily inflated to fill the tyre. The area around the valve stem didn't expand as much as the rest of the tyre due to the extra thickness of rubber, but I suspect when enclosed with the tyre on the rim and under more pressure it would have expanded just fine.ImageImageImageImage

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Speedy
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Re: Bicycle inner tubes as emergency spares

Post by Speedy » Fri Jan 25, 2019 8:16 pm

Hi Busta
in theory your idea is nice , but in practice will work for a short time .
the stress , weight and speed of a motorbike is very different from a bicycle .

I am end the move of my garage , but in 1 month aprox , I will be ready to transform a tube type rim in TUBLESS
with all the benefits that can give .

so pls stay tuned .

bye Speedy
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Meetchee
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Re: Bicycle inner tubes as emergency spares

Post by Meetchee » Tue Jan 29, 2019 1:20 pm

Hi Busta and Speedy, the only real solution to flat tyres are Bib Mousse, you can ride 6-7000 km with them, the only thing you have to do is not to ride faster than 90km/h on the road for a long time. I've used inner tubes for long trips but when you're on your own in the middle of nowhere , it's f**** boring to change or repair the tube especially under 45°C. Also note that patches don't work when it's more than 40°C.
I know the Dakar top guns change tyre and mousse everyday but if you watched the vids from this Dakar, you can easily understand why.
I 've got a friend who's done 3 Dakars, he told me some of the racers only used one mousse for one complete Dakar. This summer I'm gonna ride 7000km, after the trip I'll be able to tell you if it was worth the while. I hope so!
Hope this was useful!
Mike
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Busta
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Re: Bicycle inner tubes as emergency spares

Post by Busta » Wed Jan 30, 2019 7:51 am

Here's some further testing with a 20x4.125 children's fat bike tube in an 18" rear tyre. The tube fills the tyre very well. As you can see in the last picture the sizing is very similar to a regular rear tube. The rubber thickness is also the same as a light duty motorcycle tube at 1.3mm. This would be a good alternative if a motorcycle tube wasn't available.ImageImageImage

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Busta
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Re: Bicycle inner tubes as emergency spares

Post by Busta » Wed Jan 30, 2019 8:13 am

Speedy wrote:Hi Busta
in theory your idea is nice , but in practice will work for a short time .
the stress , weight and speed of a motorbike is very different from a bicycle .

I am end the move of my garage , but in 1 month aprox , I will be ready to transform a tube type rim in TUBLESS
with all the benefits that can give .

so pls stay tuned .

bye Speedy
Hi Speedy, I am thinking for emergency use only, not day to day riding. Typically they will be used with rim locks and at high enough pressure to avoid the tyres overheating or pinch flats, so the role of the tube then is merely to stop the air leaking out and in that respect a thin tube is no less sufficient than a thicker one. The main problem would be if the tube was significantly undersized, and so stretched beyond working limits in order to fill the tyre. That is the problem I'm trying to avoid by testing different sized tubes to see which will fill the tyre safely.
Lots of MX guys are racing on fat bike tubes due to their lightness and not seeing any loss in durability.
Tubeliss and mousses are interesting solutions but both come at significant cost and have their own disadvantages. I wear out tyres more often than I get punctures so the added complication of working around a Tubeliss setup is somewhat undesirable. A tube may be more prone to puncture but is easily patched or cheaply replaced. I wouldn't run mousses in remote areas without carrying a spare tube anyway, so this is still relevant. But that's a discussion for another thread.

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Speedy
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Re: Bicycle inner tubes as emergency spares

Post by Speedy » Thu Jan 31, 2019 6:30 pm

@Meetchee , I have used bib mousse since the very first day in the 80 , and also lately Tubeliss .
the lasting of the mousse depends from many factors , first weight of the bike , power , torque , speed and temperature .
with 1 bike they lasted only 700 km !!! front
and 1200 ca rear !
7000 km is a mirage that I never was able to reach with bib mousse .
when new they work good , but expensive and can fail .
and when they do fail , you generally don't have a tube because you relay on the mousse ....

Tubeliss , not bad , for off road , very complicated to fit properly .
would not bring them on a long trip .

My proposition was to transform standard tube rims , in TUBE LESS rims .
this will lower the weight of the wheel ,
avoid all the hassle in case of puncture ,
have far less weight and volume for repair .
safer driving .
more responsive handling on riding the bike .
1 time cost spending for tube less transformation , instead of endless mousse ( cost 110 €) or tubes .

the bicycle tubes as said previously , could work in order to reach a repair shop , but forget to make a full ride with them .

just my 2 cents , after riding for some years .

Speedy
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Busta
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Re: Bicycle inner tubes as emergency spares

Post by Busta » Fri Feb 01, 2019 7:06 pm

Another test today, this time with a Schwalbe AV13F bicycle tube which has a size range of 26x2.1-3.0. I think this would be the easiest size to find when travelling as 26" was the standard size for mountain bikes for many years. It took very little pressure to fill the tyre with very little nipping-in near the reinforced valve stem. It weighs just over 200g.
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I will be now be carrying this and the 20x4.125 fat tube as my spares, along with a puncture repair kit. These will only be used if I get an irreparable puncture in the Ultra Heavy Duty tubes I normally run, and only until I reach somewhere that sells HD tubes. Obviously I will have to ride to the limitations of a thin tube with very little pinch flat resistance. The combined weight and volume of these 2 tubes is less than a standard duty 21" front tube and it also avoids the potential issues of running an overstretched front tube in the rear. I should also point out that I'm riding a light bike and pack very light. The wet weight for my bike and luggage is around 140kg.

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Speedy
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Re: Bicycle inner tubes as emergency spares

Post by Speedy » Sat Feb 02, 2019 9:32 pm

Busta , I don't know which brand of ultra heavy tubes you fitted in the tires , but pls be aware that Michelin HD tubes are NOT reparable !
the glue we normally use to repair tubes doesn't stick to those tubes .
it comes off easily .

Speedy
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Busta
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Re: Bicycle inner tubes as emergency spares

Post by Busta » Mon Feb 04, 2019 7:25 pm

Speedy wrote:Busta , I don't know which brand of ultra heavy tubes you fitted in the tires , but pls be aware that Michelin HD tubes are NOT reparable !
the glue we normally use to repair tubes doesn't stick to those tubes .
it comes off easily .

Speedy
I wasnt aware of that. Thanks for the advice!

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