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Do you take a Spare tire on your bike touring trips???

Old 08-19-15, 09:38 PM
  #26  
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Originally Posted by mev View Post
Depends where I'm going and how long.
And also on how common your tire size is in local stores. I always take a spare tire along when touring on my folder that uses 451mm tires since that size is relatively rare and few bike shops have any in stock. But am much less concerned when using the more common 559mm or 622mm tire sizes.
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Old 08-19-15, 09:52 PM
  #27  
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If I am going far off the beaten path or away from shops I would carry a folding bead tire with me but generally I check my tires before heading out and if they look worn I replace them before I leave and I do my best to make sure I: 1. keep them properly inflated 2. don't ride like an idiot (curb jumping, riding through potholes...) 3. avoid glass and other similar type issues 4. get good tires in the first place.

The only real flats I have had are because of my own human error either deciding not to pump to ride a short distance and hitting a pothole (at the end of my ride) and being a little rough with the valves ("that's what your mother said Trebek"). I guess also once as a kid I over inflated with a car inflator because I ignored the third ding.

I would certainly take a tire if I had an odd or older size. Some of those old Schwinn and lower end American bikes have some weird ISOs that only fit certain tires even if the other tire is the same ISO.
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Old 08-19-15, 10:05 PM
  #28  
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Stick on a set of Marathons with flat proof in the tubes. Yep, it's like riding through a pool of molasses, but you won't have a puncture problem. At the worst you might need to fix a puncture from a big nail or something. Use a bit of superglue to fix any tyre cuts. Maybe if I was riding through the Australian outback I'd carry a spare tyre, but then I've worked there and I haven't yet found a bike with Air Con good enough to bother doing that.
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Old 08-19-15, 10:11 PM
  #29  
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I do carry one. I base my spares on experience though I realize there are times when experience is a poor guide. I rode over a large rock, and the Schwalbe ruptured. It was still rideable, but very distorted, and I had to remove the rear brake. I lost a lot of time and energy replacing it, and while i found a 700c tire it was so bad that at one point I switched back to the schwalbe just to see which was really worse.

My experience was getting a replacement tire in a touring format was impossible even when I reached a provincial capital with a large university and cycling population. This is not that surprising since even in TO one of the largest cities in NA, they aren't common.

So I ride whatever I want, and I carry a spare tire with kevlar that is a touring type tire, but a little on the light end of what I prefer. Since everyione uses and abuses their gear differently, I did not start out carrying a touring tire spare, and I don`t know if I recommend it. What I would say is when you need one, all the happy BS' about picking one up at the next stop or by air is not what I want to rely on. I wouldn`t base my decision on ease of preplacement, my experience is that is BS. But if you are tiny and run heavy touring tires, and ride smooth you may never need one. I ride smooth, and a large guy, and I like to run light slicks in a touring range.

Speaking of 27s. I was in a walmart recently and the only tire I would have considered riding for touring was a 27 they carry. I haven`t ridden it, so it may suck, though I believe I read it was pretty good. Too bad we went to 700c, 27 was better in most ways. The only advantage to 700c was at one time there was better gear available for it, and there still is. But if people had stuck with it, it would have tooled up just as all the nonsense we are able to get is available for far more marginal uses.
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Old 08-20-15, 05:21 AM
  #30  
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Yes - spare tire and several tubes for the bike, plus a tire and one tube for the BOB trailer.
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Old 08-20-15, 08:48 AM
  #31  
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Originally Posted by robow View Post
You're exactly right, a friend of mine needed a modest 700c tire on one of our mini tours and all we found at the local wallyworld and one other smaller sporting goods store were too large for his chainstay length and so we ended up using a Gawd awful amount of Gorilla tape to keep the tire together and on the rim. It was ugly, rode like garbage but got us back to our vehicle the next day.

I am using Schwalbe marathon tour plus 26X1.75in on my Surly LHT 26in 52cm 2008 and I use Schwalbe tires only in Southern California and my Spare tire is Continental touring plus

and I am getting the Panaracer T-Serv protex folding tires 26X1.75in
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Old 08-20-15, 09:59 AM
  #32  
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Originally Posted by Trevtassie View Post
Stick on a set of Marathons with flat proof in the tubes. Yep, it's like riding through a pool of molasses, but you won't have a puncture problem. At the worst you might need to fix a puncture from a big nail or something. Use a bit of superglue to fix any tyre cuts. Maybe if I was riding through the Australian outback I'd carry a spare tyre, but then I've worked there and I haven't yet found a bike with Air Con good enough to bother doing that.
Riding through molasses doesn't sound like much fun at all. Neither does having to change that flat with nasty goo coming out (I have had to do that with people who use those hideous slime tubes).
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Old 08-20-15, 10:30 AM
  #33  
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I would definitely carry a spare tire if possible, especially if you're using tires that are in any way unusual. On my last tour, I was riding 650b tires (which was, obviously, a pretty dumb thing to do). The odds of getting a suitable replacement tire at a bike shop were poor. But my tires were new, and I had a spare, so I figured it wouldn't be a problem. Well, my front tire blew out on the last day of the tour; sidewall separated from the bead and went BLAMMO. Lucky me, I wasn't on the bie at the time (but had been cruising down a hill at 35 mph just a few minutes earlier). Tire was instantly totaled. I mounted the spare, and we were on our way no problem. I replaced the tube, of course, but I was able to patch the tube that blew. I don't see the need for more than two spare tubes; they are easy to patch.


Out on a leisure ride this last Sunday, I rode over some glass and shredded my rear tire. Classic bad luck, I was already 60 miles from home, literally turning around to head back, when it happened. I booted one gash with a dollar bill, booted another gash with the wrapper from a Clif bar, and not many miles later was lucky enough to find a bike shop where I replaced the tire (4 PM Sunday; how's that for luck? ). The replacement tire is junk (expensive junk) but they had something, I didn't have to call my wife to come pick me up, so I was happy.
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Old 08-20-15, 02:45 PM
  #34  
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Unfortunately stuff happens to make a tire irreparable, I know this spring I lost my 2nd Conti Gatorskin in as many years when the wire bead, (the other was a Kevlar bead) separated from the sidewall for no apparent reason, which made the tire useless. Fortunately I was not on tour so it wasn't catastrophic but still a royal pain to call for help. Maybe why I'm leaning towards Vittoria's line of tires more recently.
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Old 08-20-15, 05:41 PM
  #35  
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The secret with hideous slime is that it normally stops the leak in the first place... but if you do need to patch it's easy to clean off with stove fuel.

I don't worry about the molasses feel, the 40kg or so of bike and junk means I'm going nowhere fast anyway, but when I finally get there I'm living in luxury. Mind you I do have 26 x 1.75 tyres
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Old 08-20-15, 07:19 PM
  #36  
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I just bought three of these for my Erie Canal Trailway tour across NY State. They roll very nicely. I have been using Vittoria Randonneur Hypers, which I loved, but they seem to have stopped making them. These Panaracers are light enough and pretty supple. Price is good. Too bad I cannot find a 38mm. But 35s are fine. I will probably never need the spare that I carry, but I am a worrier. They seemed to have just enough grip for the too-thick sections of gravel on some stretches of that tour, and for an odd mile or so that cut through a field that was grass and not worn down even to single track. And they roll very nicely inflated to about 55 pounds on the road. I run the 35s at 42 up front and 45 or so on the back for mixed on/off road, with my 150 pound body weight, 26 pound bike weight and 11 pounds of touring/camping panniers and uber light gear. I like these tires quite a bit.
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Old 08-20-15, 07:50 PM
  #37  
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Originally Posted by motorapido View Post
I have been using Vittoria Randonneur Hypers, which I loved, but they seem to have stopped making them.
Same tire... different name

Voyager Hyper - Vittoria.com
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Old 08-24-15, 11:52 AM
  #38  
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one time I went touring without a spare tire and I had some sort of weird damage to the tire on the inside that kept blowing my tubes and no patch kit in between Eugene Oregon and the coastal highway and I got stuck in the middle of nowhere. Tried to hitchhike back to the bike shop in Eugene and ended up having to spend the night on the only flat area that I could find which was just a little concrete pull out about a foot from the fog line where any sleepy motorist could run over my head and I woke up the next morning to the sound of a dump truck driver blasting his air horn at me. I couldn't get a ride the second day and ended up walking about 10 miles with little to no water and no food and finally a nice store owner gave me a ride into town where I bought another 5 tubes and another tire plus a spare it's only faster to go light when you don't have any problems and don't break down but you would probably pay anything for the replacement parts you need when the sun is beating down and you're pushing a loaded tourer up hills with no water or food for hours.
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Old 08-24-15, 12:36 PM
  #39  
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I take a spare tire everywhere I go. Even when not riding. Ive been trying to get rid of it for a few years now.
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Old 08-24-15, 12:41 PM
  #40  
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Talltourist has a fair point; have any of the posters who don't carry a spare tire ever had to deal with a failed tire on tour?
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Old 08-24-15, 06:02 PM
  #41  
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Originally Posted by SurlyLHT26in08 View Post
Do you take a Spare tire on your bike touring trips???
No.

1 or 2 spare tubes, patch kit and the ability to boot a larger hole.

I have never had any tire damage that resulted in the inability to fix the tire well enough to get back to some place I could get a replacement.
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Old 08-24-15, 06:05 PM
  #42  
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Originally Posted by TallTourist View Post
it's only faster to go light when you don't have any problems and don't break down but you would probably pay anything for the replacement parts you need when the sun is beating down and you're pushing a loaded tourer up hills with no water or food for hours.
If I worried about every possible "what if" I'd have so many spares on my bike I'd never get anywhere.

Your problem wasn't not having a spare tire. It was not having a patch kit and the skills to diagnose what was wrong with your front tire. Those last two things are much lighter and compact to carry than a spare tire.
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Old 08-24-15, 07:12 PM
  #43  
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Originally Posted by vik View Post
No.

1 or 2 spare tubes, patch kit and the ability to boot a larger hole.

I have never had any tire damage that resulted in the inability to fix the tire well enough to get back to some place I could get a replacement.
I have only had one tire damaged to the point where a boot would not repair it. But that was many years ago and is a notable exception. A spare tire on a fully loaded touring bike is not enough extra to worry about.

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Old 08-24-15, 07:23 PM
  #44  
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Originally Posted by wahoonc View Post
A spare tire on a fully loaded touring bike is not enough extra to worry about.


^^^ this is my idea of a loaded touring bike with a week's worth of gear/food and a spare tire is a significant addition and one I would not bother with. It's just dead weight 99.9% of the time and I don't let fear rule my decision making process. If I did the "what if''s" would pile up faster than I could load them onto my bike.
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Old 08-24-15, 07:30 PM
  #45  
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Originally Posted by vik View Post


^^^ this is my idea of a loaded touring bike with a week's worth of gear/food and a spare tire is a significant addition and one I would not bother with. It's just dead weight 99.9% of the time and I don't let fear rule my decision making process. If I did the "what if''s" would pile up faster than I could load them onto my bike.
Well, yeah. a 2 or 3 pound tire that takes up a lot of room would be a bear.

I tour on 26" MTB and take a Kenda Klimax Lite as a spare. 330 grams, and I put it at the bottom of my handlebar bag, so I really don't notice it.

If I was riding your bike and really getting out there and riding solo, I'd probably find the lightest tire I could run and lash it to my seatbag, though.

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Old 08-24-15, 07:38 PM
  #46  
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Originally Posted by LesterOfPuppets View Post
Well, yeah. a 2 or 3 pound tire that takes up a lot of room would be a bear.

I tour on 26" MTB and take a Kenda Klimax Lite as a spare. 330 grams, and I put it at the bottom of my handlebar bag, so I really don't notice it.

If I was riding your bike and really getting out there and riding solo, I'd probably find the lightest tire I could run and lash it to my seatbag, though.
I could pack an XC 29er race tire as a spare. It's just so unlikely that I will ever need it that it's a pointless piece of gear IMO.

I working on lightening my gear further. I would notice an extra 330g both due its weight and size.

The scenarios where I could not tube and boot a tire are vanishingly small in probability.
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Old 08-24-15, 07:43 PM
  #47  
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I probably could carry a spare, I could put it inside the BBQ... but I wouldn't have any room for the charcoal then.
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Old 08-24-15, 07:56 PM
  #48  
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I'm adding to my tour pack list next time. Taking 10 litres water capacity instead of 7. Also thinking of adding a bit to the first aid kit, but not sure yet. Last time it was just isopropyl alcohol (which is also cooking fuel), some clean rags and some athletic tape.
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Old 08-25-15, 08:20 AM
  #49  
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Originally Posted by LesterOfPuppets View Post
Well, yeah. a 2 or 3 pound tire that takes up a lot of room would be a bear.

I tour on 26" MTB and take a Kenda Klimax Lite as a spare. 330 grams, and I put it at the bottom of my handlebar bag, so I really don't notice it.

If I was riding your bike and really getting out there and riding solo, I'd probably find the lightest tire I could run and lash it to my seatbag, though.
vik makes a very valid point about a spare tire being dead weight and mostly useless. I suppose that I could damage a tire enough to make it unusable but I've only ever had one tire damaged in roughly 10,000 miles of loaded touring including about 1000 miles of mountain bike touring. I can't say that I've even damaged a tire enough to be unridable in 40 years of riding and that includes a whole lot more mountain biking. I carry spare tubes, a patch kit and a large piece of Tyvek but I haven't ever needed the Tyvek.

On a side note to vik, if you are worried about weight why are you carrying around a battery powered flasher?
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Old 08-29-15, 07:52 AM
  #50  
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In developed countries I don't bother to carry a spare tire normally but in less developed countries of course. No way in hell I'm going to find a 700c in the middle of nowhere Asia... Usually carry a MTB tire that is at least 2.0".

I've blown sidewalls before and had to use my spare.
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