So many benefits to riding a bicycle......

chris m.

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I miss those days. I used to commute to work via a bike path next to my apartment, ride out to the gym, and pick up groceries on the way home.

Since moving out of the city, cycling is just for exercise and enjoyment only. My work commute is 50 miles round trip, so that isn't going to work. My nearest grocery store is only 14 miles round trip which is fine, except bikes are always being stolen, so that is a no-go as well. The ride itself would suck anyway because the expansion strips on the highway shoulders around here are about 3 inches wide and every 20 feet.....might as well be riding on a train track.

I do need to get out and ride more to shed some winter weight, but that is all the bike is good for these days.
I can't solve the road conditions, but a good e-bike makes a long commute much more viable. At least once a week I do a 42 mile round trip commute on my ebike. I bought a 52V, 500W mid-drive motor and battery kit from Luna cycles and put it on my hard-tail. It has a 1 kwh battery on it. I could probably do the whole trip at almost 25 mph on one charge, but to help maintain long-term battery life I bring the lightweight charger with me and top it up again at work before heading home. Since I built the bike myself there's no governor on it so it will go around 30 mph in the flats very easily. But I set it to a lower assist level and pedal. I basically get the equivalent of the workout I would get if I were riding let's say 10 miles each way on a regular bike instead of 21 miles each way on an e-bike. Takes me an hour each way. In the afternoons during rush hour I actually often get home faster on the e-bike than I would have gotten home in my car.

Luna Cycles is based in S.F. and they sell some nice kits.

IMG_0743.jpg
 

NC E30

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Tubeless tires have been my downfall. A lot of people - who I assume are daily riders - think they're great, but I can't keep air in them for more than a couple weeks at a time.
You may want to try a different tire sealant, that doesn't reflect my experience at all. I do top them up before each ride, but even when I'm off the bike for weeks, they never go down enough to come off the rim.
 

Stanford Guitar

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I got into riding again about nine years ago when I had a job close enough (six miles each way) to ride to work. There was a locker room and showers at that job and I really enjoyed the experience. Two years ago, after having changed jobs and gotten a much longer commute, I finally bought myself a nice bike that I thought would get me riding for fun in summer evenings and weekends instead of commuting to work.

Tubeless tires have been my downfall. A lot of people - who I assume are daily riders - think they're great, but I can't keep air in them for more than a couple weeks at a time. I've been to one bike shop twice and another three times in the last year and a half trying to get this problem solved. They'll hold air for a few rides if I'm riding regularly, but then if the weather or my own laziness keeps me off the bike for a couple weeks (or more, in the winter), they go "dead flat" while sitting in the garage. The weight of the bike from above causes the tires to dismount from the rims and I can never get them them to "stick" again and hold air. It's always another trip to the bike shop, and I don't think that's how this is supposed to work. Yes, I've been on bicycle forums and YouTube trying to find answers. And yes, I top off the air pressure in my tires before every ride - I'm not just letting them sit untouched and thinking they'll hold air like automobile tires. I think I just don't ride often enough to justify tubeless tires.

Meanwhile, my wife and kids' bikes and my old bike with tubes never go all the way flat, even in the winter when the bikes are hanging up from the garage ceiling. I guess the answer is obvious - go back to the older tech that has worked for decades and quit being grumpy about all the time and money I spent chasing something that the internet said was better.

I agree with the comments that bicycle GAS is just as bad as guitar GAS, if not worse.
If you have rims that are made specifically for tubeless, tubeless stems, taped correctly, with tubeless tires and sealant, you should almost never flat. If you have non tubeless specific rims that were converted to tubeless, then there are numerous things that could be the issue.
 

oldunc

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Personally I much prefer walking; so much more opportunity to see what the world's up to, and less need to mix it up with cars. Of course there are the bicyclists who seem to think that bombing around on sidewalks is fine, but at least they're generally smaller than cars.
 

Toto'sDad

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I thought it was public service effort not doing that but confess it helps to cut the drag when I do some more epic two wheel travels. My standard uniform is wear sports oriented street clothing over bike liners or a swim suit or whatever is right for the job.

This is maybe sexist, but my wife says just reality. At our age fit women generally look better than fit men in spandex. A whole lot of bikers (exercise, commuter, MTB), runners and walkers are visible from my kitchen window. I follow the data and see she's right.

Go for a bike ride. It's an instant trip to childhood even if that's a brief moment. It looks like Bakersfield has bike rental options.
At one point in my life I rode quite a lot, rode to work every day for about a year. I rode to Wasco, a little over forty miles from where I lived, had lunch with a friend and rode back in around five and a half hours. (all flat ground) My wife had a bike, and so did the kids. The town was different then, and we all rode together quite a lot. After the kids left home, we gave all of our bikes to a homeless shelter. The guy who got my bike wrote me a nice letter, telling me how the bike had expanded his ability to search for work, and that he had secured employment and would be moving on from the shelter.

As far as riding a bike now, no thank you. If I did ride, I'd have to haul my bike in the CRV to somewhere that I MIGHT have a chance of surviving on the road. Which kind of negates the whole biking experience. You don't see nearly as many people on bicycles as you used to in Bakersfield since we became the most likely place to be ran over by a car if you happen to be a pedestrian. The usually rude suspects in spandex, challenging you for the highway are still there, but their numbers are dwindling. From my days of bicycling I'm always as courteous as I can be, to the rude riders, sometimes they can try your patience though.
 

chris m.

Doctor of Teleocity
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Santa Barbara, California
I got into riding again about nine years ago when I had a job close enough (six miles each way) to ride to work. There was a locker room and showers at that job and I really enjoyed the experience. Two years ago, after having changed jobs and gotten a much longer commute, I finally bought myself a nice bike that I thought would get me riding for fun in summer evenings and weekends instead of commuting to work.

Tubeless tires have been my downfall. A lot of people - who I assume are daily riders - think they're great, but I can't keep air in them for more than a couple weeks at a time. I've been to one bike shop twice and another three times in the last year and a half trying to get this problem solved. They'll hold air for a few rides if I'm riding regularly, but then if the weather or my own laziness keeps me off the bike for a couple weeks (or more, in the winter), they go "dead flat" while sitting in the garage. The weight of the bike from above causes the tires to dismount from the rims and I can never get them them to "stick" again and hold air. It's always another trip to the bike shop, and I don't think that's how this is supposed to work. Yes, I've been on bicycle forums and YouTube trying to find answers. And yes, I top off the air pressure in my tires before every ride - I'm not just letting them sit untouched and thinking they'll hold air like automobile tires. I think I just don't ride often enough to justify tubeless tires.

Meanwhile, my wife and kids' bikes and my old bike with tubes never go all the way flat, even in the winter when the bikes are hanging up from the garage ceiling. I guess the answer is obvious - go back to the older tech that has worked for decades and quit being grumpy about all the time and money I spent chasing something that the internet said was better.

I agree with the comments that bicycle GAS is just as bad as guitar GAS, if not worse.
Go ahead and switch back to tubes. It's kind of weird that you're having this problem, though. I hang my bikes in the garage from hooks, so that might help.

I bought an Airshot tank you can pump up to high pressure with a floor pump and then it lets out a whole bunch of air super fast so you can re-seat a tubeless tire on the rim. Otherwise you need a high-output air compressor.

I suspect you have an issue with either your rim or your tire beads. In my experience even when the tubeless tires go completely flat the bead stays stuck to the rim, glued on there by dried latex tubeless goo. It is actually really, really hard to unseat the beads when I need to change tires. Out by the side of the road the trick I figured out is to lay the wheel on the ground (disc side up!), then carefully stand on the tire sidewall with my foot as close to the rim edge as possible, and then bend over and pull up on the rim until the tire bead pops off the rim with a loud "pop". Once I get it partially unseated it is easy to unseat it the rest of the way.

Basically I am doing what this guy is doing in this video, but using the ground and my feet as the bench vise.

Are you sure you have tubeless ready rims and tires? Also make sure you have proper tubeless tire rim tape.

1652977443491.png


 

chris m.

Doctor of Teleocity
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At one point in my life I rode quite a lot, rode to work every day for about a year. I rode to Wasco, a little over forty miles from where I lived, had lunch with a friend and rode back in around five and a half hours. (all flat ground) My wife had a bike, and so did the kids. The town was different then, and we all rode together quite a lot. After the kids left home, we gave all of our bikes to a homeless shelter. The guy who got my bike wrote me a nice letter, telling me how the bike had expanded his ability to search for work, and that he had secured employment and would be moving on from the shelter.

As far as riding a bike now, no thank you. If I did ride, I'd have to haul my bike in the CRV to somewhere that I MIGHT have a chance of surviving on the road. Which kind of negates the whole biking experience. You don't see nearly as many people on bicycles as you used to in Bakersfield since we became the most likely place to be ran over by a car if you happen to be a pedestrian. The usually rude suspects in spandex, challenging you for the highway are still there, but their numbers are dwindling. From my days of bicycling I'm always as courteous as I can be, to the rude riders, sometimes they can try your patience though.
With the desire to reduce vehicle emissions California is investing a lot more money on bike paths these days. Hopefully Bakersfield will have a bicycle planner in their roads department that can plan and implement a network of bike paths for your city. That can make a huge difference.

I blame Strava for some of the rider rudeness. When I see a guy blowing through stop lights, just about running over pedestrians, etc., I figure he is trying to get a new PR on his Strava. There were guys like that before Strava but I think Strava has made it worse. Yet another example of social media messing up the world....
 

Toto'sDad

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With the desire to reduce vehicle emissions California is investing a lot more money on bike paths these days. Hopefully Bakersfield will have a bicycle planner in their roads department that can plan and implement a network of bike paths for your city. That can make a huge difference.

I blame Strava for some of the rider rudeness. When I see a guy blowing through stop lights, just about running over pedestrians, etc., I figure he is trying to get a new PR on his Strava. There were guys like that before Strava but I think Strava has made it worse. Yet another example of social media messing up the world....

As I said I used to ride a lot. Since you mention it, when we were out on our walk with Alex last night, we saw a guy on a bicycle blow through a very busy four way stop as fast as his little legs could pedal his rump. That ever present look on his face glaring at the automobile drivers around him.

I truly liked riding when I was young, but I don't think Bakersfield is going to be leading the way on bike paths, although there is a really nice bike path that is quite long that goes clear out to Cal State college and maybe beyond. It didn't endear the local bike people to those of who play golf when they tried to force a bike path across one of the oldest golf courses in Bakersfield. The authorities surprised everyone in voting it down, I think the golfers and bikers would have not peacefully co-existed. I still like and respect bikes, and those who ride them, but it is all different today, just as everything else is.
 

telel6s

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Curious about @Honga Man 's tubeless tire issue. Especially if this is happening with both front and rear (not clear in the post if that's the case or not). This sounds like some specific issue with the wheels &/or tires, not tubeless tires in general. I have three bikes set up tubeless (one gravel, one 29r mtb, one 27.5+ mtb). I also have a road bike with tubes. So I can sometimes go three weeks or more without riding a specific bike. I've never had a tire go completely flat. And I don't notice much difference in air loss between the tubeless and the tubed tires.

Yes, tubeless setup has a learning curve. And some tire/wheel combinations work better than others (although that's becoming less of an issue as the industry moves towards better standardization and they've figured out how to make things work easier). But once set up, it just works for me. And once I did my first set of wheels, all the others were no big deal. Takes a bit longer than a clincher with a tube but just as easy for me. And adding some extra sealant every 6ish months takes ten minutes. As someone said above, a correctly set up tubeless tire bead will not come off of the rim bead even if all the air has leaked out; that's exactly what you need to do to top up the sealant.

If @Honga Man feels like it, I'd be curious to know what rim, tire and sealant are being used. And what did the shop tell you? Any shop worth its weight in spoke nipples should be able to diagnose the problem, not just apply a short term fix.

All that said, I see no reason to change my road bike over to tubeless even though the wheels are designed for it. (knock on wood) I get less than one flat a year on that bike over 2000-3500 miles per year over the past nine years. So if you don't need the benefits of tubeless, just go back to using tubes.
 

That Cal Webway

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In 1973 I rode across the US, Santa Monica to Atlantic City.
Changed my life.

Stopped riding in 1999 when hit by a geezer. But up till then I rode a lot, esp to work etc.
Have been running since 1972 and continue.

.
 

Honga Man

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chris m. said:
In my experience even when the tubeless tires go completely flat the bead stays stuck to the rim, glued on there by dried latex tubeless goo. It is actually really, really hard to unseat the beads when I need to change tires.

I certainly believe you and all the other people I've read saying the same things online. It hasn't been my experience, however.

Both the rims and tires are tubeless compatible as confirmed by two bike shops. The tech I saw two weeks ago said, "these aren't tubless rims" at first glance but then he googled the make and model and said, "oh, I guess they are."

Here's a picture I took the first time this happened to post in a bicycle mechanics section of a popular bike forum. I could easily push the tire away from the rim.

IMG-7585.jpg


I've had this happen three times now:

1. Come out to the garage before a ride and find the tires a little soft, as expected.

2. Pump up to 45 PSI as recommended by the bike shop. I've always been a close-to-maximum pressure guy with tubes but they said if I put in more than about 45 PSI I might blow the tires off the rims.

3. Close the presta valves carefully and re-install the caps (yeah, I know caps are only cosmetic).

4. Go back inside to put on my cycling clothes, etc.

5. Come back to the garage five or ten minutes later to find one of the tires (it has happened to both) "dead flat" and off the rim. That's when I took the picture above. I didn't have to pry the tire from the rim; it was just completely loose all around the rim. I easily pushed the tire to the side to take that picture.

So they go from having some air in them to full of air to what I call "dead flat" in minutes and without being moved or ridden. When they go "dead flat", the tires just fall away from the rims.

Something I thought of while typing this: perhaps I should hop on the bike and ride around on the street in front of my house right after filling the tires to make them "seat" themselves properly? I just can't figure out how they go flat right after I add air.

The other times I've had flats with these wheels & tires, the bike has been hanging from hooks in the ceiling. One or both tires have gone flat and come off the rims while it sat there for a few weeks. By "come off the rims" I mean I can see from across the garage that tire is no longer touching the rim as the bike hangs there.

It's not my intention to turn this thread into one about my problems, and I appreciate the suggestions, gents. Sadly, I've heard them all before but just haven't figured out how to make these work for me yet.
 

Stanford Guitar

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I certainly believe you and all the other people I've read saying the same things online. It hasn't been my experience, however.

Both the rims and tires are tubeless compatible as confirmed by two bike shops. The tech I saw two weeks ago said, "these aren't tubless rims" at first glance but then he googled the make and model and said, "oh, I guess they are."

Here's a picture I took the first time this happened to post in a bicycle mechanics section of a popular bike forum. I could easily push the tire away from the rim.

IMG-7585.jpg


I've had this happen three times now:

1. Come out to the garage before a ride and find the tires a little soft, as expected.

2. Pump up to 45 PSI as recommended by the bike shop. I've always been a close-to-maximum pressure guy with tubes but they said if I put in more than about 45 PSI I might blow the tires off the rims.

3. Close the presta valves carefully and re-install the caps (yeah, I know caps are only cosmetic).

4. Go back inside to put on my cycling clothes, etc.

5. Come back to the garage five or ten minutes later to find one of the tires (it has happened to both) "dead flat" and off the rim. That's when I took the picture above. I didn't have to pry the tire from the rim; it was just completely loose all around the rim. I easily pushed the tire to the side to take that picture.

So they go from having some air in them to full of air to what I call "dead flat" in minutes and without being moved or ridden. When they go "dead flat", the tires just fall away from the rims.

Something I thought of while typing this: perhaps I should hop on the bike and ride around on the street in front of my house right after filling the tires to make them "seat" themselves properly? I just can't figure out how they go flat right after I add air.

The other times I've had flats with these wheels & tires, the bike has been hanging from hooks in the ceiling. One or both tires have gone flat and come off the rims while it sat there for a few weeks. By "come off the rims" I mean I can see from across the garage that tire is no longer touching the rim as the bike hangs there.

It's not my intention to turn this thread into one about my problems, and I appreciate the suggestions, gents. Sadly, I've heard them all before but just haven't figured out how to make these work for me yet.
Is that a 700c tire on a 27.5 (650b) or 29er rim? Tire looks way too big for the rim to be correct.

Also, the internal width of the rim should match the tire. Putting to wide tire on a narrow rim will not work.
 
Last edited:

chris m.

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The industry has standards but there is some slop. I would try different tires. For example in my case when I put Schwalbe G One gravel bike tires on my carbon gravel bike rims to replace the original tires, one of them kept going totally flat within 24 hours. I added more fluid, pumped it back up, and rode it in front of my house for a few minutes, making hard turns and kind of bouncing up and down in the saddle. You get these loud popping sounds when the bead fully seats. Anyway, it took a few tries but now it doesn't leak any more than the other wheel.

It also might be instructive to partially pump up a tire to maybe 30 psi, listen for the pops, see if you can get any more pops out of it by wiggling the tire on the rim, then pump up some more to 50 or so, then do what I did on the road to try and seat it further. Get it to where you're pretty sure it is as seated as it can possibly be. Then get a big tub of water and check for leaks. Maybe rotate the tire 180 degrees on the rim and try again. If the leak point moves with the tire than for sure it's the tire. If the leak point doesn't move when you move the tire then maybe it's the rim. Could also be the valve seat, and the last thing I can think of is maybe you got a bad batch of sealant.
 

Honga Man

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telel6s said:
]If @Honga Man feels like it, I'd be curious to know what rim, tire and sealant are being used. And what did the shop tell you? Any shop worth its weight in spoke nipples should be able to diagnose the problem, not just apply a short term fix.

Sorry for continuing my thread hijack, but I don't want to refuse free help here.

From the receipt from the shop, which is still in my email for easy copying and pasting:

- Competition Spoke Pricing SKU

- DT Swiss 2.0 x 12mm Black Brass Nipple

- Tubeless Rim Tape by the Foot

- Velocity Quill Rim - 700, Rim, Black, 32H, Clincher

- Teravail Cannonball Tire - 700 x 42, Tubeless, Folding, Black, Durable

And they sold me a bottle of Stan's sealant, which I assume is in the tires as well - or was, the first time they were set up tubeless. I don't know what's in there now.

The first time I went for a ride with this setup, I hit a goathead thorn (we have tons of them around here) and got a flat tire. It turned out there were tubes in the tires, even though I had paid for a tubeless setup.

I took this picture on the side of the road with my phone after being so surprised to find a tube after I had paid for a tubeless setup.

IMG-0289.jpg


I went back to the shop and they apologized as one might expect and set them up tubeless while I waited and at no extra charge. It's a busy shop in Denver and I have no reason to think they don't know what they're doing.

Then the problems I described above started happening. The shop that did the initial setup is near my office but not my home, so I've gone to another reputable shop close to home since then. Each time, I've explained the history and they've said things like, "Hmm, maybe they need to be re-taped". Each time I've paid $40 for the setup but the situation hasn't improved.

I went back a couple weeks ago and the tires are still holding air (the last time I looked) but I haven't ridden it yet. Yeah, I know, but I'm busy with work and a wife and teenage kids, so my time isn't always my own.

Thanks for the interest and willingness to offer advice!

 

Alex_C

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I got into riding again about nine years ago when I had a job close enough (six miles each way) to ride to work. There was a locker room and showers at that job and I really enjoyed the experience. Two years ago, after having changed jobs and gotten a much longer commute, I finally bought myself a nice bike that I thought would get me riding for fun in summer evenings and weekends instead of commuting to work.

Tubeless tires have been my downfall. A lot of people - who I assume are daily riders - think they're great, but I can't keep air in them for more than a couple weeks at a time. I've been to one bike shop twice and another three times in the last year and a half trying to get this problem solved. They'll hold air for a few rides if I'm riding regularly, but then if the weather or my own laziness keeps me off the bike for a couple weeks (or more, in the winter), they go "dead flat" while sitting in the garage. The weight of the bike from above causes the tires to dismount from the rims and I can never get them them to "stick" again and hold air. It's always another trip to the bike shop, and I don't think that's how this is supposed to work. Yes, I've been on bicycle forums and YouTube trying to find answers. And yes, I top off the air pressure in my tires before every ride - I'm not just letting them sit untouched and thinking they'll hold air like automobile tires. I think I just don't ride often enough to justify tubeless tires.

Meanwhile, my wife and kids' bikes and my old bike with tubes never go all the way flat, even in the winter when the bikes are hanging up from the garage ceiling. I guess the answer is obvious - go back to the older tech that has worked for decades and quit being grumpy about all the time and money I spent chasing something that the internet said was better.

I agree with the comments that bicycle GAS is just as bad as guitar GAS, if not worse.
My best guess is the rim tape needs to be redone properly. This is the main cause of leaky tubeless setups. The valves can also get gummed up where they leak. If you are re-taping, make sure to clean ALL of the gunk off the old rim. Rubbing alcohol and elbow grease. Get tape that is 3 to 5mm wider than your rim's internal width. This video may help.
 

Alex_C

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Sorry for continuing my thread hijack, but I don't want to refuse free help here.

From the receipt from the shop, which is still in my email for easy copying and pasting:

- Competition Spoke Pricing SKU

- DT Swiss 2.0 x 12mm Black Brass Nipple

- Tubeless Rim Tape by the Foot

- Velocity Quill Rim - 700, Rim, Black, 32H, Clincher

- Teravail Cannonball Tire - 700 x 42, Tubeless, Folding, Black, Durable

And they sold me a bottle of Stan's sealant, which I assume is in the tires as well - or was, the first time they were set up tubeless. I don't know what's in there now.

The first time I went for a ride with this setup, I hit a goathead thorn (we have tons of them around here) and got a flat tire. It turned out there were tubes in the tires, even though I had paid for a tubeless setup.

I took this picture on the side of the road with my phone after being so surprised to find a tube after I had paid for a tubeless setup.

IMG-0289.jpg


I went back to the shop and they apologized as one might expect and set them up tubeless while I waited and at no extra charge. It's a busy shop in Denver and I have no reason to think they don't know what they're doing.

Then the problems I described above started happening. The shop that did the initial setup is near my office but not my home, so I've gone to another reputable shop close to home since then. Each time, I've explained the history and they've said things like, "Hmm, maybe they need to be re-taped". Each time I've paid $40 for the setup but the situation hasn't improved.

I went back a couple weeks ago and the tires are still holding air (the last time I looked) but I haven't ridden it yet. Yeah, I know, but I'm busy with work and a wife and teenage kids, so my time isn't always my own.

Thanks for the interest and willingness to offer advice!

I've found that a good bike mechanic is hard to find. I know of one, but I lucked out. He is an ex-pro racer and knows what he is doing.
I do all of my own bike maintenance and repairs. I know I'll do a good job or I'll re-do it until the job is done well.
 




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