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I just started riding folliwng the winter thaw and the road shoulders around here are laden with slivers of glass, lots of which is impossible to avoid, much less see unless the light is shining just right. Tonight, altough it has never happened before, my FRONT tire flatted due to a sliver of glass.

The risk of a flat is really starting to take the fun out of my rides as I don't have much time to enjoy the bike.

My bike came with Michelin Pro 2s, which I understand are reasonably resistant. Anybody have any other suggestions (concerning tubes or even alternative tires) to reduce the chance of inadvertently hitting glass, etc?

Any thoughts appreciated.
 

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stihl said:
Wiping tires do not work.

Armadillo's will do the job.
Second the armadillos. My commuter has fenders so wiping wasn't really an option. I never had much luck with wiping my tires anyway. Knock on wood, I have yet to have a glass flat on my armadillos. The only flats I have had were due to thorns. These were big thorns that would have gone through a tuffy as well. The thing about glass is this, it will embed in your tire and eventually work its way through the casing. To minimize this, once a week deflate your tires and go over them under a good light while pinching the tire. When you see a piece of glass in the tread, flip it out. I use an old screwdriver that I filed down but you could use anything with a point. The tread may have a cut due to the glass, but as long as the casing is intact it is just cosmetic.
 

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Bontrager Race Lite Hard Case - same deal as armadillos, with a layer of kevlar, but I think the bontragers have a nicer ride.
 

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Pro2s are nice racing tires... but not the best for riding through everyday crap. Unfortunately, a more durable tire, tube, or whatever is going to slow you down a bit and not feel as nice. Armadillos are tough tires... but are also rough and slow. I'd suggest a reasonable compromise... like maybe Michelin Carbons. I very rarely get flats on the front so I like to use a high performance tire there, with a durable one on the back.
 

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doctorbohica said:
I just started riding folliwng the winter thaw and the road shoulders around here are laden with slivers of glass, lots of which is impossible to avoid, much less see unless the light is shining just right. Tonight, altough it has never happened before, my FRONT tire flatted due to a sliver of glass.

The risk of a flat is really starting to take the fun out of my rides as I don't have much time to enjoy the bike.

My bike came with Michelin Pro 2s, which I understand are reasonably resistant. Anybody have any other suggestions (concerning tubes or even alternative tires) to reduce the chance of inadvertently hitting glass, etc?

Any thoughts appreciated.
I have to agree with what the others are saying. The Specialized Armadillos are just about indestructable. I was having trouble with puncture vine on my Moutain Bike- I think it was 5 flats in 6 rides. I put the Armadillos on it and accidentally ran through a puncture vine patch. Without exageration, I put over 100 thorns in each tire. I got one flat- and it took a full night for it to go down. There is one problem with the Armadillos- weight. I don't know if it's different with their road tires, but I could feel the difference immediately when I put them on.

However, there is another option. My road bike came with Specialized All Condition Pro tires. These are lighter than the Armadillos. I believe they have kevlar fibers in the rubber as opposed to a full kevlar belt like the Armadillos (the Specialized web site has info on the different technologies). I have been pleasantly surprised at how well they handle glass. One of my favorite spots for road riding is a paved trail by an airport. The trouble is "trolls" go out there at night and break their bottles on it. Though I ride it regularly I've never had a glass flat. I did end up with a cut tire after a few hundred miles, but I don't know if that was from glass or some other road hazard.
 

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doctorbohica said:
I just started riding folliwng the winter thaw and the road shoulders around here are laden with slivers of glass, lots of which is impossible to avoid, much less see unless the light is shining just right. Tonight, altough it has never happened before, my FRONT tire flatted due to a sliver of glass.

The risk of a flat is really starting to take the fun out of my rides as I don't have much time to enjoy the bike.

My bike came with Michelin Pro 2s, which I understand are reasonably resistant. Anybody have any other suggestions (concerning tubes or even alternative tires) to reduce the chance of inadvertently hitting glass, etc?

Any thoughts appreciated.
If your weight and the tires' size cooperate, consider lowering your pressure a bit. (assuming you run full-pressure, of course.) A less-hard tire will deform over things rather than grinding them into the rubber. Not a miracle cure-all, but it helps a surprising amount. Also makes the bike ride much better, and common beliefs to the contrary, aren't noticeably slower.
 

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Why wipe?

When you first run over a shard of glass, it doesn't usually instantly puncture the tire. It embeds in the tread. Every time you roll over it again, the shard cuts a bit deeper into the tire until you're flat. If you wipe with the palm of your (gloved) hand, you'll flip the shards out of the tire.
 

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I'll second rruff...

... and add that I used to use a Performance Pro Kevlar tire for my regular commute into the hell that is D.C. roadways. The tire lasted just ok, but I noticed many small cuts that were most probably caused by glass. Inevitably, when the cuts became too numerous, I would eventually flat, and continue to flat on a regular basis (so much for kevlar belts).

I switched to Michelin Carbons and noticed improved ride quality, less rolling resistance, and - a ha! - no small cuts! And no flats in 3 months.

BTW, I'm a tire-wiper of long standing, removing glass, sand, pebbles, and the occasional wino with my efforts.
 

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Maybe, maybe not. I'm guess not.

Spunout said:
Why wipe?

When you first run over a shard of glass, it doesn't usually instantly puncture the tire. It embeds in the tread. Every time you roll over it again, the shard cuts a bit deeper into the tire until you're flat. If you wipe with the palm of your (gloved) hand, you'll flip the shards out of the tire.
Maybe, maybe not. Between the time you run over the glass shards and the time you wipe the tire, the wheel will have rotated several times. By the time you wipe the tire, the glass would likely have either been squeezed out by the natural action of the tire flexing at the ground contact point, or been driven into the tread far enough that it won't be dislodged by a the light wiping possible while the wheel is rotating at speed.

I used to wipe my tires religiously. Then I stopped when it was pointed out that wiping is largely ineffective. I have noticed no difference in my rate of punctures. Others have found the same results between wiping and non-wiping.
 

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To quote Billy Joel,

Mark McM said:
I used to wipe my tires religiously. Then I stopped when it was pointed out that wiping is largely ineffective.
You may be right, I may be crazy.

But it makes me feel better to wipe – I read somewhere Lance wipes.

For similar reasons, I also wipe the soles of my basketball shoes. It's the only thing I can do that in any way resembles Larry Bird.

And wiping is the only thing I do that resembles Lance on bike (although I am from a suburb of Dallas and I love mexican food).
 

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Wiping makes me look so-pro.

I only do it when I'm with other people.
 

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I have been training/ commuting on a pair of tufo cs 33 special (tubular clinchers) injected with the sealent for two seasons in New Jersey, I actually bike through Newark. I ve been call white lightening, been propositioned by a prostitute while riding, but have only had one massive slash that I rode slowly home on.

That is the only flat, tire problem I have encountered in two years on those wheels/ tires
(Proton front, OP record 36h 3x rear, tufo cs special tubular clincher).
 

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You know, I've got the same Specialized All Condition Pros and while I've put about 800 miles on them, I've also had some issue with getting the tires to seat properly after swapping out the blown tube... Out of curiousity, what rims are you using with your Specialized Tires? I've got them on the Shimano 550s and they just don't like to be pushed to much more than about 110 psi before I start to unseat the tire again... Even tho they are supposed to be rated to 125 psi?
Any experience with this, or suggestions to getting these tires to seat properly?
 

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Sprocket - Matt said:
You know, I've got the same Specialized All Condition Pros and while I've put about 800 miles on them, I've also had some issue with getting the tires to seat properly after swapping out the blown tube... Out of curiousity, what rims are you using with your Specialized Tires? I've got them on the Shimano 550s and they just don't like to be pushed to much more than about 110 psi before I start to unseat the tire again... Even tho they are supposed to be rated to 125 psi?
Any experience with this, or suggestions to getting these tires to seat properly?
I have Alexrim AT400 rims. I've never had any issues with seating Specialized All Condition Pros, even at 125 psi. They should work with any hook rims, and I thought all modern clincher rims had them. The only issue I've ever had with the AT 400s is the stock brake pads would chew off little pieces of metal that would get imbeded in the pads and make a horrible noise. After switching to Koolstop pads that problem disappeared.
 

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gatorskins w/liners

Conti Ultra gatorskins with aramid felt liners (panasonic I think) - i run these on my fixie commuter, rain or shine. Tough as old boots and still roll pretty nice.
 
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