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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been running 25mm pro races on my training bike and the LBS only carries 18-23mm tubes. Lately I've been having a buttload of flats but can't see or feel anything that would have caused it. The question is, is the mismatch causing this, I don't know, is the tube expanding too much or something? Of course the people at the LBS say the tube will work fine but wouldn't the tube company say so on the box? Why would they limit their market? Would it be better to use the next size up, 28-35mms? Thanks
 

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thenazz said:
I've been running 25mm pro races on my training bike and the LBS only carries 18-23mm tubes. Lately I've been having a buttload of flats but can't see or feel anything that would have caused it. The question is, is the mismatch causing this, I don't know, is the tube expanding too much or something? Of course the people at the LBS say the tube will work fine but wouldn't the tube company say so on the box? Why would they limit their market? Would it be better to use the next size up, 28-35mms? Thanks
I think running a 18-23 with a 25 tire is more common than using a 28-35 tube. The tube should not be what is causing your flats and I would notthink a larger tube would make a difference.

Is the hole on the tire or rim side of the tube?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
A couple were leaking at the base of the stem. Most were slow leakers. I'm running the same tubes on my TT and racing bike with no problems.
 

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leaks @ stem could be faulty tube or technique

Sounds like you're an experienced rider, so it's probably not technique. A friend of mine who used to own an LBS (he's since taken a paying job) said that problems with low-cost accessories like tubes are more common than you'd think. He went through one batch of Taiwanese tubes in which nearly half wouldn't hold air, and the cost is so low it's not worth complaining to the supplier--"You go through weeks of hassle and all you wind up with is a free box of tubes."
FWIW, I've had really good success with Continental tubes, but they're often hard to find because they cost a dollar or two more. I doubt that size is your problem, though. I have road tires from 19 to 41 cm and MB stires from 1.4 to 2.1 inches, and I only buy two sizes of tubes for everything, 700x25 and 26x1.5. It's never caused any trouble.
 

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The roadbikerider newsletter did a thing on this the week before last, IIRC.

Short version: the 18-23 is the right tube, the 28-35 will give nothing but headaches from bunching up, which will cause it's own flats.

My wild guess: check that your rim strip hasn't moved and allowed the edge of a spoke hole to slice the tube.

Or it might just be bad luck.
 

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I like Salsa tubes. Not too expensive and have always given me good service. I do the same, one size for road tires and one size for MTB (although I'm slowly going tubeless, either Stans or UST on my mountain bikes).
 

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thenazz said:
I've been running 25mm pro races on my training bike and the LBS only carries 18-23mm tubes. Lately I've been having a buttload of flats but can't see or feel anything that would have caused it. The question is, is the mismatch causing this, I don't know, is the tube expanding too much or something? Of course the people at the LBS say the tube will work fine but wouldn't the tube company say so on the box? Why would they limit their market? Would it be better to use the next size up, 28-35mms? Thanks
Check the tires for cuts. If you have one that goes through the casing I'd bet the tube is pushing up through the cut. Every rotation of the tire a teeny bit of the tube hits pavement. It causes nice slow leakers. When you install the tires make sure and line up the tire logos with the valve stem so that you can pull the tube, find the hole, and then using the hole in the tube to trace back to the spot on the tire.
 

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If you are using a nut on the valve stem throw it away
 
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