Mastering replacing inner tubes

bobsinatra

Über Member
Hi

As a beginner, I am capping my rides to about 30 miles. Whilst I am not bad at changing an inner tube in my shed, at the side of the road I find it more tricky.

I have Continental gatorskins and they can be difficult to fit back on the wheel. I have learnt my lesson with continental inner tubes and will be using a new brand. The valve core coming out on a hand pump is v frustrating.

I would like to join a cycling club, but locally, none are accepting new members and the government seems to want to shut down the country for 2021 also.

I was thinking of getting a 700 wheel and an additional gatorskin tyre and just practising on a spare. With repetition, I should get better.

Knowing that I could speedily replace an inner tube, I would develop the confidence to get up to the 25 mile mark.

Any other advice appreciated.
 

fossyant

Ride It Like You Stole It!
Location
South Manchester
Talc the inside of your tyres and the tube, then if you need to replace on the road, there will be enough talc to stop the new tube sticking to the rim or tyre, making fitting easy. You don't need to talc a spare tube.
 

cyberknight

As long as I breathe, I attack.
have you got wire or folding bead tyres?
wired are harder to get on and off and i found gators harder than some to do and not overly brilliant at protection anyway
 
OP
bobsinatra

bobsinatra

Über Member
Practising is an excellent idea.

In not sure why you need a new wheel and tyre for that, surely better to use your existing one? Particularly as differences in tyre and rim can make a big sufferers to how difficult it is.

Some tyre/rim combinations can be an absolute pig, I've recently acquired one of these to help with one such.

https://www.spacycles.co.uk/m13b0s72p1263/VAR-Tyre-Lever
Yes that is an option, but when my bike is all set up, I like to leave it that way.

The replacement tube I put in went flat after a few miles, but it seems to have stayed inflated on the second inflation.

Looking online, Continental Gatorskin tyres are perceived as being a bit fiddly.
 

Lovacott

Senior Member
Yes that is an option, but when my bike is all set up, I like to leave it that way.

The replacement tube I put in went flat after a few miles, but it seems to have stayed inflated on the second inflation.
This time of year, it's probably a bramble thorn which has caused the puncture. Bramble cuttings are all over the road in the hedge cutting season running from early October until mid November. These little buggers have a habit of not letting go once they are bedded in.

Before you slap in a new tube on the roadside, you need to check the inside wall of the tyre to make sure that whatever punctured the last tube, isn't waiting there ready to puncture the new one.

Last weekend, I bought a pair of small pliers for the very purpose of pulling out thorns. Best done from inside of the tyre because the outer body of the thorn will have broken off by the time you realise that you have a problem.
 

screenman

Legendary Member
I just nip the valave up with pliers when fitting a new tube, mind you the pumps I use now are push on's but it is an old habit.
 

PaulSB

Legendary Member
@fossyant beat me to it but applying talc to your tyres makes the job much easier. I unpack my spare tubes, apply talc, wrap in newspaper, wrap in cling film. I run Gatorskins and can fit these with my thumbs using this method.

I'd also suggest investing in a Crank Brothers Speedier Lever. The right hand end is for removing the tyre and the left for installing. Works brilliantly and is very strong.

https://images.app.goo.gl/gHKiTsCvntQsx9az5
 
OP
bobsinatra

bobsinatra

Über Member
This time of year, it's probably a bramble thorn which has caused the puncture. Bramble cuttings are all over the road in the hedge cutting season running from early October until mid November. These little buggers have a habit of not letting go once they are bedded in.

Before you slap in a new tube on the roadside, you need to check the inside wall of the tyre to make sure that whatever punctured the last tube, isn't waiting there ready to puncture the new one.

Last weekend, I bought a pair of small pliers for the very purpose of pulling out thorns. Best done from inside of the tyre because the outer body of the thorn will have broken off by the time you realise that you have a problem.
Yes I was out in the countryside, and this was probably it. I was about 15 miles out after about an hour, then felt my rear tyre deflate whilst going down a steep hill.

Was frustrating as think I could have got up to 40 miles.

Will just have to practice.
 
Yes that is an option, but when my bike is all set up, I like to leave it that way.

The replacement tube I put in went flat after a few miles, but it seems to have stayed inflated on the second inflation.

Looking online, Continental Gatorskin tyres are perceived as being a bit fiddly.
Much better to use your own IMO. Being confident getting the wheels off and back on again is as important as a tube switch.

And I'd very strongly recommend taking the tyre off that went down once. Sounds very likely the sharp that caused the first puncture could still be in there - tyres don't randomly go down for no reason. Suggest you get it off and minutely check the inside and outside of the tyre, and pump up the inner tube out of the tyre to check for small holes.

Good luck.
 
OP
bobsinatra

bobsinatra

Über Member
Much better to use your own IMO. Being confident getting the wheels off and back on again is as important as a tube switch.

And I'd very strongly recommend taking the tyre off that went down once. Sounds very likely the sharp that caused the first puncture could still be in there - tyres don't randomly go down for no reason. Suggest you get it off and minutely check the inside and outside of the tyre, and pump up the inner tube out of the tyre to check for small holes.

Good luck.
I am confident getting the wheels off.

I will give the tyre another close inspection.
 

ianbarton

Über Member
I will give the tyre another close inspection.
When you get the punctured tube out make sure you don't flip to over, but keep it in the same orientation it was on the wheel. Pump up the tube and you can usually see the puncture easily. Line up the tube over the wheel and that will give you a good idea of where the thorn went into the tyre. Makes it easy to find and remove the damn thing!
 
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