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Just so this doesn't become an all-photography forum :)

This morning I got a relatively late start to work, so around 6:30 AM I was crusing through the industrial park, about half way to work, when I noticed a boggy front tire. A quick check confirmed a flat and so I walked the bike across the street into the local Fastenal parking lot, because they have lights!

A bit o'glass removed, a tube changed (even at 29F it's not that hard to do) and I was on my way to work. But it was...different... I was running a total of about 30 minutes late, between my late start and the flat, and so for the first time in a long while, I rode with the sun at least partway up. Wow! How cool to see the world that's outside of my headlight beam. How nice, for a change!

Made it to work, patched the tube, put it away for the next flat.

And tell me...I would have been less likely to get a flat if I'd been driving (though you'd have to see my alleged car to be sure), but suppose I had...anyone think I could have been back on my way in less than 15 minutes?

I love riding to work!
 

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flat...

After Hurricane Ivan I have gotten almost 1 flat per week. I have had two flats in a single ride many times (sometimes front and back). Still trash and debris everywhere. Anyway, I am getting much faster at changing a flat. Even with a careful sweep of the tire I am always done in less than 5 minutes. I am using CO2 cartridge inflators though. I carry 3 cartriges, 1 tube and a patch kit. I am good for 3 flats, then I break out the cell phone and call in the wife. WIth CO2s and a little practice, 5 mintues shoud not be a problem.

Mike
 

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Andy M-S said:
A bit o'glass removed, a tube changed (even at 29F it's not that hard to do) and I was on my way to work. But it was...different... I was running a total of about 30 minutes late, between my late start and the flat, and so for the first time in a long while, I rode with the sun at least partway up. Wow! How cool to see the world that's outside of my headlight beam. How nice, for a change!
I work a rare weekend. This past Saturday was one of them, and I went in about two hours later than when I work on a weekday. It was weird not needing my headlight at all and then riding home with it on the whole way. I actually prefer to ride in the dark in the morning and have light on the way home, but the change was still nice.

By the way, I haven't had a single flat since I switched to Specialized Armadillos some months ago. I was expecting ride comfort to be worse, but even if there was a difference, I couldn't tell after using them for a few rides.
 

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There are some things we just don't discuss here.

[email protected] are one of them (Huffys are the other ;) ).

I blame it directly on Andy M-S that I had to go rescue Miss M last night. Her first commuting [email protected] in I don't know how long.

I work down by the White House, she works up on Capital Hill. Do you have any idea how much security I had to weave my way though to get there from here? Seems someone was giving a speech.......
 

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Bacon!
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Hey MB, I thought you'd at least ask the OP to post a pic to keep with the theme around here :). I agree, the f-word is a bad thing here.
 

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Are you experienced changing car tires? I think you could do it in 15min if you're familiar w/ the car, location of what's needed, etc... and had changed flat in it before. My first flat on the road in a vehicle, I had a guy stop and help me out, he said he and/or his wife get flats all the time on his dirt road that he lived on. I think that was a sub 15min tire change, pretty close anyways as I remember not being more than 20min later than I usually arrive home.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Only once...

phil. said:
Are you experienced changing car tires? I think you could do it in 15min if you're familiar w/ the car, location of what's needed, etc... and had changed flat in it before. My first flat on the road in a vehicle, I had a guy stop and help me out, he said he and/or his wife get flats all the time on his dirt road that he lived on. I think that was a sub 15min tire change, pretty close anyways as I remember not being more than 20min later than I usually arrive home.
I only had to do it once, and it was a royal pain, and took quite a bit longer than 15 minutes. I suppose if I had more experience, I could have done it. Of course, then I'd have to drive on the micro-spare to some place that would fix or replace the tire, as well.
 

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Front flats don't bother me too much. They're easy to change, no muss, no fuss.

Rear flats, which seem to be the only kind I get, on the other hand, are a pain in the ass. The brilliant design of my 1982 Maruishi dictates that the wheel is virtually impossible to get straight in the dropouts, since the rear derailleur hanger is strangely designed so that you can't just push the wheel all the way into the dropouts and have it be aligned. Instead, you get to fight with it, have it rub a brake, fight it some more, have it seem straight only to fall out of the dropouts, fight it some more, get it ridable, and call it good. I think my best tire change time on the back is around 25 minutes (no CO2, though).

I am actually riding the Specialized Armadillos mentioned above. Between them, the slimed tubes, and the tube protectant strips I've put in the tires, I've managed to slow the rate of flats to only about 1 a month. I think that 32 pounds of bike, another pound or two of clothes, lunch, etc., and 185 pounds of rider are just too much for the poor rear wheel...
 

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I Type, Therefore I Am
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MB1 said:
We don't even say the word in our house and I see you won't even type it. It freaked out my Mom last summer when my 6 yr old daughter referrred to the "F" word. No Mom, not that "F" word. We prefer to speak of "Inflation Issues".
 

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Bike Dude
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Leave a little earlier

My commute is fairly flat but has it's share of crappy streets and "glass infested areas" (usually around several liquor stores that cater to the crack heads/winos). I use cheap tire liners in both tires. I like the look of fenders but they always contributed to more flats for me. The reason is I usually brush the tops of my tires when I feel I've passed thru a lot of glass, I couldn't do this with fenders and I felt this contrubuted to flats while I rode. I started leaving an extra 20-30 minutes before I usually would so that when I did get a flat along the way I can casually pull over and change the damn thing without worrying over how late I'm going to be. I would always sweat heavily when I was sweatin' (no pun intended) changing out the flat. I carry a good small flash light for the times I can't find a well lit area. The extra time allows for a casual commute and I can grab that extra coffee along the way when I have to have more caffeine. Ride safely.
 

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Thommy said:
My commute is fairly flat but has it's share of crappy streets and "glass infested areas" (usually around several liquor stores that cater to the crack heads/winos). I use cheap tire liners in both tires. I like the look of fenders but they always contributed to more flats for me. The reason is I usually brush the tops of my tires when I feel I've passed thru a lot of glass, I couldn't do this with fenders and I felt this contrubuted to flats while I rode. I started leaving an extra 20-30 minutes before I usually would so that when I did get a flat along the way I can casually pull over and change the damn thing without worrying over how late I'm going to be. I would always sweat heavily when I was sweatin' (no pun intended) changing out the flat. I carry a good small flash light for the times I can't find a well lit area. The extra time allows for a casual commute and I can grab that extra coffee along the way when I have to have more caffeine. Ride safely.
I use armadillo tires to prevent being late. I had two flats last year. The first one was from a thorn and I noticed that my tire had gone flat during the day. The second one was on the same day on the other wheel and was also caused by a thorn. More often than not, I get "brown spots" on my tires. The brown spot is a thorn that has punched through the tire and has broken off and smoothed out into a spot. One friday I noticed that I had a spot on my front tire and put off changing it until sunday afternoon. Between friday and sunday, the tire lost 10 pounds of pressure. The thorns here are almost like a radial tire plug. You do eventually have to remove it and patch the tube. I use fenders on my bike and most of the time I have them set up to be within 1/4-3/8" away from the tire to sweep away any small branches from thorn bushes. I commute in the dark and don't always see everything on the MUT or road. Glass is everywhere in Hawaii. I usually end up replacing my tires once the tread is more cuts and holes than tread. My front tire has a big cut across the tread that is 1/8" wide and 1/2" long. I cut it about 3500 miles ago. The casing is intact, no reason to change it yet.
 
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