Author Topic: Vanbike - the curse of soft tyres  (Read 6262 times)

andygates

  • Peroxide Viking
Vanbike - the curse of soft tyres
« on: 24 April, 2008, 09:17:46 am »
A while back I built Lance (the fixie folder) as a vanbike: the idea was that he would live, folded, in the camper van for deployment for lunchtime errands on drive-days and general pootling when Out Adventuring.

One of the reasons Lance doesn't get ridden much is that whenever I get to him, his tyres are soft.  The ride is squirmy and sucky, and pumping the tyres up every time I want to ride - which might be once a fortnight - is a pain in the bum.

Small wheels seem to be worse at losing pressure over time than big ones.  Is there anything I can do to prevent this? 
It takes blood and guts to be this cool but I'm still just a cliché.
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tiermat

  • According to Jane, I'm a Unisex SpaceAdmin
Re: Vanbike - the curse of soft tyres
« Reply #1 on: 24 April, 2008, 09:18:58 am »
Solid tyres?

Fill the tubes with Holts flatstop stuff??

Wooden tyres?

Just a few ideas :)
I feel like Captain Kirk, on a brand new planet every day, a little like King Kong on top of the Empire State

andygates

  • Peroxide Viking
Re: Vanbike - the curse of soft tyres
« Reply #2 on: 24 April, 2008, 09:32:10 am »
Hm, exactly.

Is there a special brand of folder tube that really really holds air?

Should I just fit a compressor in the van?  (hmm, there's an idea)
It takes blood and guts to be this cool but I'm still just a cliché.
OpenStreetMap UK & IRL Streetmap & Topo: ravenfamily.org/andyg/maps updates weekly.

Tourist Tony

  • Supermassive mobile flesh-toned black hole
Re: Vanbike - the curse of soft tyres
« Reply #3 on: 24 April, 2008, 09:34:24 am »
That was my first idea. Chip-fat generated electrical pumptastic.

Re: Vanbike - the curse of soft tyres
« Reply #4 on: 24 April, 2008, 09:38:33 am »
Is there a special brand of folder tube that really really holds air?

I have Schwalbe 406 tubes in my recumbents and they stay up (fnaar). You could do worse (I think you need 451s, yes?)
Profit or planet?

Pingu

  • Put away those fiery biscuits!
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Re: Vanbike - the curse of soft tyres
« Reply #5 on: 24 April, 2008, 09:40:55 am »
CO2?

Re: Vanbike - the curse of soft tyres
« Reply #6 on: 24 April, 2008, 10:08:13 am »
I check and pump up the tyres on any bike that hasn't been ridden for a week or more.

andygates

  • Peroxide Viking
Re: Vanbike - the curse of soft tyres
« Reply #7 on: 24 April, 2008, 10:16:30 am »
CO2's expensive. 

Checking every week is fine for main rides but an ungodly hassle for the van (which is, let's be frank, my Shed-With-A-Bed).  Solution needs to be brainlessly easy or I'll just leave the thing in the cobwebby corner where it currently sulks.

The Schwalbe tubes might be worth a punt.  I'll give those a go.  I think it's compressor time though - a nice upgrade and it'll be good for other bikey stuff. :thumbsup:
It takes blood and guts to be this cool but I'm still just a cliché.
OpenStreetMap UK & IRL Streetmap & Topo: ravenfamily.org/andyg/maps updates weekly.

Re: Vanbike - the curse of soft tyres
« Reply #8 on: 24 April, 2008, 12:05:48 pm »
I have to question the wisdom of using a fixie as an occasional bike, though; I just know I would forget to pedal at an inopportune moment  :-\
Profit or planet?

Re: Vanbike - the curse of soft tyres
« Reply #9 on: 24 April, 2008, 12:10:27 pm »
...I think it's compressor time though - a nice upgrade and it'll be good for other bikey stuff. :thumbsup:

A strange thing I've found about power tools: for most small jobs they're no less hassle than the old hand tools.

Jacomus

  • My favourite gender neutral pronoun is comrade
Re: Vanbike - the curse of soft tyres
« Reply #10 on: 24 April, 2008, 12:24:58 pm »
They are more fun though  :thumbsup:

Plus you don;t get to shout "MORE POWER. ARR ARR ARR!!" In best Tim "Tool Time" Allen styleee
"The most difficult thing is the decision to act, the rest is merely tenacity." Amelia Earhart

Re: Vanbike - the curse of soft tyres
« Reply #11 on: 25 April, 2008, 12:07:18 am »
My Brompton tubes/tyres seem to hold decent pressure in storage.

I'd just go cheap pump/compressor in the van though.  (Mind you, all my bikes have a seat pack toolkit plus most have a pump - just in case)

Re: Vanbike - the curse of soft tyres
« Reply #12 on: 27 April, 2008, 08:32:56 pm »
It does seem a little odd that these tyres apparently go down so easily.  When I was using my Brompton for commuting, I doubt I pumped it up more than every couple of months (fairy visitations aside), and my trailer rarely needs pumping up.  In fact, I just leaned across and checked the pressure in it, and it feels fine, and I haven't used it for probably three months or more.  As far as I can recall, neither of the tyres are particularly unusual, although I rarely go for the el-cheapo brands of tyres, so they're probably reasonably good brands (Michelin at a guess).  They've both got Schrader valves if that has any possible bearing.

(I'd like to point out that at this point about 95% of my belongings are in the living room, in boxes, so it isn't that odd, albeit not the norm, to have the trailer quite so close!)
Actually, it is rocket science.
 

andygates

  • Peroxide Viking
Re: Vanbike - the curse of soft tyres
« Reply #13 on: 27 April, 2008, 08:57:40 pm »
Maybe I should just start with decent branded tubes then. :thumbsup:
It takes blood and guts to be this cool but I'm still just a cliché.
OpenStreetMap UK & IRL Streetmap & Topo: ravenfamily.org/andyg/maps updates weekly.

Re: Vanbike - the curse of soft tyres
« Reply #14 on: 29 April, 2008, 12:50:55 pm »
got my dahon out of the shed for the first time in 8 months this morning and the tyres were down from 125 to about 80psi..

new tubes, Mr Gates.

fruitcake

  • some kind of fruitcake
Re: Vanbike - the curse of soft tyres
« Reply #15 on: 11 June, 2008, 09:02:33 pm »
I currently run six bikes and so some get used rarely.  I've spent too long thinking about compressors and you may as well benefit from my internet research.  Many compressors are 12v so inside a van is a good place for a compressor to be.  They tend to be for schraeder valves. If your vanbike doesn't have presta, a compressor won't be inconvenient.  They're still crude for low volume (bicycle) tyres.  You are that much more reliant upon your car battery and a compresssor takes up some van space.
I decided that well-made lo-tech was the way.  If I invested the same effort finding a well made track pump, soft tyres wouldn't actually be a chore, if it was a really good pump I could perhaps like using it.  (The corollary is also true: I am learning to hate cheap pumps.)

andygates

  • Peroxide Viking
Re: Vanbike - the curse of soft tyres
« Reply #16 on: 11 June, 2008, 11:21:55 pm »
Another track pump is no bad thing to own.
It takes blood and guts to be this cool but I'm still just a cliché.
OpenStreetMap UK & IRL Streetmap & Topo: ravenfamily.org/andyg/maps updates weekly.

Re: Vanbike - the curse of soft tyres
« Reply #17 on: 12 June, 2008, 12:37:21 am »
Yep, n+1 applies to pumps, as well as bikes, computers, GPSs, bike lights, etc etc ;D
Actually, it is rocket science.
 

Re: Vanbike - the curse of soft tyres
« Reply #18 on: 23 June, 2008, 07:14:37 pm »
A van track pump would also be ideal for topping up the heart shaped air bed as well  ;D ;D ;D
Stropping rocks

andygates

  • Peroxide Viking
Re: Vanbike - the curse of soft tyres
« Reply #19 on: 23 June, 2008, 08:18:22 pm »
And the inflatable sheep in the back. :thumbsup:
It takes blood and guts to be this cool but I'm still just a cliché.
OpenStreetMap UK & IRL Streetmap & Topo: ravenfamily.org/andyg/maps updates weekly.