Saturday, April 28, 2012

Learn about tubulars, p/b Tati Cycles

Tati Cycles will be hosting an "intro to
tubulars" class as part of the "Mechanical Mondays" series.

This will be a great way to learn from "experts" about the basics of tubular tires and the everyday use of them.

The shop is located at 1261Paulina Chicago. The class is this Monday 4-30, from 7-8pm, and is free. See you there.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

First 6 hour off road ride and first puncture of 2012

I took advantage of the summer-like warmth and a random Thursday off work to ride one of my favorite trails, Des Planes River Trail. Starting at Lake street in Forest Park I made it north to Deerfield road in Lake county. On the way back I had a front puncture, I was using a Vittoria XG tubular, the older silver model. It took less than 3 minutes to replace with a spare road tubular I was carrying. I finished the final 2 hours on an unglued road tubular. I will post some pictures of the repair process.

I have about 900k on the bike so far in 2012 and this is my first puncture, will it be my last?

Monday, January 23, 2012

Time to remove your cx tubulars and glue your 21mm road tubulars

Stop being lazy, toss those clinchers in the scrap heap and keep riding tubulars. 2011 was my first year riding only tubulars, road, cx, commuting and mtb. I only flatted 3 times. Once in a CX race on a rotten dugast, and 2 times on the road. Keep it up.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Tubulars need to be glued to the rims.

This poor soul crashed on a fast downhill turn, rolling his front tubular. Was the rolled tire the cause of the crash or the result of it, we will never know. All I know is it was a sad walk to the pits, looks like he has some nice walkin' shoes!

This racers rear tubular came off the rim 100%!!! I talked to him and he said the glue job was "probably 2 years old." He ran through to the finish and did not DNF.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Monday, October 24, 2011

Belgian Tape fail?

This rolled tubular was spotted at this past weekends CCC race. The tire looked to be belgian taped The tape could have stopped the whole tire from rolling off the rim, so perhaps it was worth it.

The Belgian tape method has become very popular in the past few years. "Belg tape" is basically a cloth tape that is encased in a strange white glue, please do not confuse it with .tufo tape . The process for using belg tape is one additional step to the normal gluing procedure, it is easy enough, but should you use it? DO you need to use it?? I feel like going over some "pros" and "cons"

First the pros.

1) Sounds PRO, "I just belg-taped my dugasts to my zipps, I am ready for mid-pack of the cat 4's!

2) There is a better chance the tire will not "pop" off the rim. The worst that will happen is a small section will detach from the rim (see picture above)

3) Better gluing surface for the tire. The tape will cover the spoke holes and smooth out any imperfections you may have in the glue on the rim. It will provide a 100% smooth surface for the tires base tape to bond to the wheel.

4) The white "glue" that the tape is made from will mix with the mastik creating a "soft" glue and keeping the glue from drying to the point of becoming brittle and cracking, causing a tire to roll off, see #2 above.

5) Not a huge investment, a roll to tape 2 wheels can be purchased for $6 online.

6) It can help match the radius of narrow tubular rims that were designed for road tubulars to the larger cyclocross tubulars by "filling" the gap at the lowest part of the rim.

Now the cons.

1) Adds $3 per wheel and an extra step, also one more thing to "run-out-of"

2) The tires base tape is unusable after removing the tire, the belg tape/glue mixture bonds so strongly it can not be removed without damaging the base tape or tire. Once you belg them on they are on for good, even if you need to remove a tire to repair a puncture/replace a spoke/ reseal a valve extender, the base tape will need to be replaced.

3) Cleaning the rims is harder than a cyclocross race. You will scrape, cuss, add a caustic mix of strange chemicals and after hours you will see your rim surface again. A local wheel builder says it is cheaper to rebuild wheels with new rims than pay him to scrape the mess off of a rim.

To Belg or not to belg, that is the question............

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Rolled Tubulars at CX races.

This tire rolled at Northbrook IL cyclocross race last year. You can see it came off half of the rim. You can also see my hand trying to get it back on, I clearly recall thinking "Why did this guy not glue this thing on?" He walked back to the pits.

Speaking of no glue.

USGP 2011 day 1, a rider from a Wisconsin shop was warming up before the elite men's race when he rolled both tires at the same time. Note the lack of glue on the rims.

I have always wondered what would happen if you rolled a tubular at the valve area, well now we know.

I call this "the slow jog of shame"