Supplies that fix your flat tires:
Fixing a flat can be intimidating to new riders, but it’s very easy if you have the right supplies on hand! All of this fits in your seat bag.
- Tire Levers (to wedge the tire off and on the rim)
- Tube (SEE below for details on an important detail)
- A “boot”. Cut a small section out of an old tire. It can be used in emergency when inserted on the the inside of a blown sidewall.
- CO2 Dispenser
- CO2 Cartridge (SEE below for details)
- $20 (in five dollar increments) to pay a nice rider who stops and asks if you have everything and gives you their spare or to stop by a local bike shop to replenish your supplies after your repair.
If you change a flat at home:
- Use a floor pump (less costly then using a CO2)
- Replace your tires after 2000 miles of riding. The Challenge Tires are the easiest tire on the market to get on the rim for the first time. It’s the only tire I don’t break my nails or need help getting the last section on the rim! Also, after riding the tires for a couple of weeks they really do peel off and on the rim like a banana making it fast to change out the old tube for a new one. This brings me to my last point.
Tubes are sold in many different stem lengths. Take a look at your rim and wheel depth! Most triathletes ride deeper dish aero wheels where your road bike might have a shallow rimmed wheel. I train and race on Shimano C50 wheels which I only use 80 mm valve tubes. The Shimano C35 wheels only needs a 52 mm valve tube which is typical for most road bikes. Co2 cartridges also come in 2 sizes and are threaded or non threaded to fit in different kinds of CO2 dispensers. I prefer the smaller 12 gram cartridge over the 16 gram to eliminate the chance of over inflating the tube. You’ll still get 100 pounds of air from the 12 grams and a great ride. Practice makes perfect. Always offer to help a rider you see stopped on the side of the road. What goes around comes around!
Fix a flat and make a friend. Know the Stem size and Grams for your CO2