Bikes = punctures, cars = reliable tyres

allen-uk

New Member
Location
London.
I don't want to get a puncture out there on the road, miles from home, same as most sane cyclists.

But it struck me that in 40 years of driving a variety of cars from bangers up to brand new ones, I've only had 4 roadside punctures in probably 500,000 miles. Occasional slow ones, needing pumping up and driving to tyre shops, but only 4 times have I had proper punctures.

What's so different about bikes? DO they puncture more frequently, or is it just that they're more of a pain in the bum when it does happen?

And apart from the price, is there any other disadvantage to the 'puncture-resistant' tyres now on the market?


Thanks.

Allen.
 

killiekosmos

Über Member
Mmm,

It's not comparing like with like is it? On my wife's car the rubber layer with tread seems to be about 20mm thick - that's a lot of rubbber for a nail or glass to cut through. On my bike I recon the tyre is about 3mm thick.

P******es are a pain in cars or bikes. I gather some new cars don't come with a spare, just a tube of "goo " to put in tyre then re-inflate - useless if sidewall goes.

I also think road conditions make a difference. Motorways and dual carriageways get looked after best - but no bikes! On the other hand my local cycle lanes are identified by the sprinkling of broken glass along them. Cyclists tend to cycle closer to edge of road where most of the rubbish is too.

P******e-resistant tyres are heavier - generally the more resistant the more weight. You need to decide whs's important to you - is the extra wight worth the fewer p******es?

If you carry a spare tube, patches and a CO2 cyclinder you can get going in 5 minutes.
 

PrettyboyTim

New Member
Location
Brighton
As the posters above suggest, it's a weight issue - car components are very heavy compared to bike components because they've just been able to upgrade the engine to cope; upgrading the engine on a bike is not as easy... :biggrin:

Having said that, I've not had a single puncture on my Marathon Plus tyres since I put them on, around 6000 miles and two and half years ago.
 

cyberknight

As long as I breathe, I attack.
As above i had 4 in 1 week using cheap tyres on my glass infested route so i switched to conti gator skins and i have been fine ever since !

It will always be a trade off between weight and speed.For general commuting pootling about i would go for extra weight +resistance any day.It is no fun changing an inner tube in the cold and wet :sad:
 

GrasB

Veteran
Location
Nr Cambridge
Yes car tyres are less vulnerable to road debris but iImagine riding a bike with the tyre side walls being 6-12mm thick & the tread being upwards of 18mm.
 
OP
A

allen-uk

New Member
Location
London.
Thanks for those replies, which make sense, of course.

The CO2 can sounds a handy bit of kit - is there also another aerosol-type product that allegedly fills a punctured tube and temporarily seals it (or did I dream it up?)

Allen.
 

marinyork

Resting in suspended Animation
Location
Logopolis
The puncture protection tyres are harder to get on. If you do cycle far from home you've got the right worries/concerns. I know people that never carry a pump or patches/tube because they think they can't change a puncture and their cycling patterns low mileage and close to home mean that to an extent that policy makes sense.

I'm an inept tyre changer (compared to people on here) but you gain a lot of confidence when you change a few and I got a lot more confident when I got tyre levers and a pump I like. I had what a few years ago would have been a nightmare scenario to me midweek - a puncture out in the middle of nowhere. Was absolutely fine. That said the puncture resistance tyres do supple up a bit, you just don't see this over the time periods until later.
 
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allen-uk

New Member
Location
London.
Thanks, marin, interesting.

In my case 'far from home' is quite close, as being disabled means that a couple of miles can be a very long distance on a 'bad' day. I've got a feeling that puncture-resistant tyres and a mobile phone are going to be my best defences.


A.
 

marinyork

Resting in suspended Animation
Location
Logopolis
allen-uk said:
Thanks, marin, interesting.

In my case 'far from home' is quite close, as being disabled means that a couple of miles can be a very long distance on a 'bad' day. I've got a feeling that puncture-resistant tyres and a mobile phone are going to be my best defences.


A.
If it is an urban area with a lot of cyclists, you are right to consider all these things but I'd hope that one of the many cyclists would give a hand if needed. Maybe Auntie Helen or someone could tell you their thoughts. Sure mobile phone and the resistant tyres will get you a long way, some people swear by armadillo's some people M+s. I have marathon and marathon pluses and the +s are horrid to get on. I regard the standard marathons as the optimum level of difficulty/how often I get punctures for me.

Some of it is luck someone I know a while back was bemoaning having a puncture soon after on the better tyres he replaced (much faster) but in truth he doesn't do enough miles to be really able to make that statement.
 

jimboalee

New Member
Location
Solihull
No prizes for duducing why Motor car tyres are called "Steel belt radial" tyres.

I'm sure most of you including myself would be pretty fed up lugging round tyres with a mat of interwoven steel wiring below their tread.

Thank the heavens for kevlar.
 
marinyork said:
I know people that never carry a pump or patches/tube because they think they can't change a puncture and their cycling patterns low mileage and close to home mean that to an extent that policy makes sense.
I'm one of those who don't carry puncture repairs. I ride a brompton, I live close to a bus route, I cycle close to a bus route.

Given the option of trying to change a Brompton tyre on the side of the road (yes, I know you should be able to patch, but I don't think I'd be able to get the glass/debris out without taking the whole thing apart and looking very hard inside the tyre!); vs getting a taxi/bus home and then fixing the thing in the warm, dry, with all the tools I'll need it's a no-brainer really. Especially given a rear puncture on a Brompton (if you want to take the wheel off) needs a spanner, somewhere safe to put the gear indicator rod, and the nut thing, and the chain tensioner...

No punctures since (getting the bike shop to fit) my marathon plusses about 10 months back now.

Of course, a large bike is different (no public transport option probably).
 

Debian

New Member
Location
West Midlands
I'm verging on paranoid about punctures, I hate them, they always seem to happen at the most inconvenient time and place. Also, pumping up a tyre at the roadside with a less than useful mini-pump is no fun either, my arm is fit to drop off by the time I've got anywhere near 65psi. I do carry 2 x spare tubes, a patch kit and two mini pumps (I said I was paranoid :rolleyes:).

I now have Schwalbe Big Apples on the commuter MTB and I use Slime inners on the off-road bike.

The Big Apples have been great so far. I had one inexplicable rear puncture, I couldn't find the reason, there was nothing obvious in the tyre. Apart from that, no punctures in probably 600+ miles on them so far and that includes a mix of roads, gritty canal towpaths, and bridleways.

The Slime inners are great also, I only use them on the off road bike and I know for a fact that they've saved me from many punctures miles from civilisation!

So go for Big Apples + slime inners maybe? That combo would be pretty bullet proof I think.
 

MarkF

Legendary Member
Location
Yorkshire
Punctures were the one thing that drove me crazy when I took up cyling a few years back. I was over 40 and on a hybrid when I started and and TBH speed/weight means nothing to me because I am plodder, if I was much younger on a different bike then I might feel differently. I changed to Marathon +'s maybe 3 years ago and I don't carry a repair kit.....not one puncture since.
 

GrasB

Veteran
Location
Nr Cambridge
700x28c M+ & several 1000 miles without a puncture. My averages show very little impact from going to them over 23c slicks, I think because at my speed the air resistance is a much bigger issue than the rolling resistance.
 
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