Latex tubes question

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Apr 20, 2022, 12:52:15 PMApr 20
to randon
To users of latex tubes: do you find you have to re-inflate your tires on longer events?


Apr 20, 2022, 2:02:08 PMApr 20
to randon
On my last 400k, I did not have to reinflate my tires.  I"m guessing during a 1200k, I may have to given that its several days but for a single day event, never have had the need to.

Mark Thomas

Apr 20, 2022, 5:57:31 PMApr 20
I’ve done 1200s without reinflating latex tubes. I start with a few psi extra and usually finish a few psi under. The additional squishy-ness late in the ride seems to mesh nicely with the desires of my backsides by then. 


On Apr 21, 2022, at 3:55 AM, wrote:

To users of latex tubes: do you find you have to re-inflate your tires on
longer events?
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Eric Nichols

Apr 21, 2022, 8:20:15 AMApr 21
to randon
It may depend on how finicky you are about tire pressure, and how willing you are to top-off pressure mid-ride. Latex tubes reportedly lose around 0.5 to 1 percent per hour.  That seems about right in my experience. I used tubular tires with thin latex tubes for decades, and they needed pumping up every day. Wider tires and/or thicker latex tubes may extend that interval.   

I've used latex tubes on 200k brevets without issue, but for anything longer I generally switch to butyl tubes or tubeless.  Perhaps if I was aiming to "do a time", I might try them on a longer brevet since they do roll marginally faster.  For me, it's not so much the hassle of reinflation that keeps me from using them on longer brevets, it's more about worry management. Who among us hasn't experienced soft-tire paranoia?  You probably know what I mean: that dread feeling when you *imagine* your tire is starting to deflate, but you don't know for sure, and you really don't want to stop right now because (a) you're sitting on a friendly wheel, or (b) it's raining or (c) it's dark or (d) all of the above. 

Eric in NH

Robert Buschman

Apr 21, 2022, 9:55:25 AMApr 21
to Mark Thomas,
50 years ago I bought my first good bike and it came with sew-ups ( which have latex tubes). I was running them at 100+ lbs. and had to pump them up every day.  Now that I'm riding 42mm clinchers at 38# I only need to pump them up once a week.  High pressures leak faster.

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Apr 27, 2022, 3:34:07 PMApr 27
to randon
I've used latex tubes almost exclusively on my main road bike for years. The one exception was 2019 for PBP and qualifiers for which I used lightweight butyl due to concerns of pressure loss over multiple days. 200k, 300k, and even 400k no issue as shouldn't drop more than 5psi. But for a 1200k I'd be worried and even 600k could go either way.  Current usage is labeled 28s (measure close to 30) at about 65-75 psi. As noted above wider tires and lower pressures leak down slower (and tend to be more forgiving with a wider pressure sweet spot).

Adam Glass

Apr 27, 2022, 4:43:00 PMApr 27
to randon
what's the definitive story re: patching latex tubes eg. can you use stock park patches, do you need the ones with the separate sandpaper and glue?

Apr 28, 2022, 7:47:17 PMApr 28
to randon
I had good luck for years patching my latex tubes using hand cut patches from another irreparably damaged latex tube (and thoroughly cleaned on the mating surface).  I figured using the same material would stretch better together.  The latex would curl up when exposed to the standard vulcanizing fluid/rubber cement, but it never seemed to be an issue.

I've mostly moved on to tubeless on my bikes, happy not to being pumping tires up daily ... and not patching tubes.


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