Repairing Flat Bicycle Tires on the Road
I know tire repair sounds pretty basic but tire repair is a key skill for anyone who rides a bicycle more than walking distance from their home or car. I have had lots of tire repair experience and learned what I know the hard way, sitting on the ground in the rain with a flat. My record is 4 flats in one day but with the excellent tubes and tires I use now, I seldom get a flat. But when you do, being prepared and relaxing will take the sting out of the experience.
Just click on the play button to watch the video. I got several good tips watching it and I thought I was a tire repair pro.
Recommended Tire Repair Gear to Carry on your bike:
1. Two (2) spare tubes for rear wheel and one for the front if it is a different size- more if you are on an extended tour and you use an odd size on your rear wheel
Note: Front wheel flats on small front wheels are much less common than rear wheel flats on recumbents, so one tube for the front should be fine.
2. A good set of tire levers, my favorites are the Crank Brothers Speed Lever Tire Lever . Stay away from metal levers.
3. A good pump, the Topeak Road Morph Bike Pump is a reasonable choice just don’t trust the built in pressure gage.
4. A patch kit, when you have used all of your tubes these will get you to where you can get another tube. I have used Park Tool GP-2 Super Patch Kit because they are thin and quick, but they are not the best if you don’t plan on replacing the tube. People who are more patient used the superior vulcanizing patches, Park Tool Vulcanizing Patch Kit .
5. A tire pressure gage, buy a cheap pop-up type at WalMart for about a dollar. These work better than the more expensive spring types. Just make sure you get one that has a range that matches your tires, a low pressure car gage won’t handle 100 PSI tires.
6. A spare tube cap and valve plus a valve changing tool. Again, get these at WalMart for about $1. A very common problem is for a valve to stick after you top the air off in a tire.
7. A tire boot – this covers the hole in a blown out or ripped tire. It is not a repair but will get you home. I carry Park Tool Emergency Tire Boot – TB-2 but you can use a folded dollar bill in an emergency.
Tip: If you are using the latest version Real Player, you can down load these videos, save them on your computer and play them whenever you want them. A download of the free version of Real Player is available at Real Player Download. Stick with the free version it is all you will need.