It happenned to me, the dreaded Slime "disaster"

AHicks

Well-Known Member
Went for a ride the other day, and while I didn't use a pressure gauge to check the tires, I did give them the "pinch test" to make sure we were good to go (hard as a rock, check!). About a mile down the road (paved sub streets), with no previous warning, the bike started handling wierd, actually getting sideways on me, refusing to go straight. After getting it stopped, looked to the rear, and it was pretty obvious the tire was flat. Completely flat. As in no air at all!

Not able to ride it due to a completely flat tire, I had to walk the bike home. This resulted in a 1 mile walk of shame. Up hill the entire distance, hot day with no wind, etc, etc, etc. Kidding, actually, not that bad. It could have been much worse had I gone in a different direction. To add frustration to my walk of shame, by time I get the bike home the rear tire and wheel were covered in Slime. A picture perfect "Slime disaster" if there ever was one....

Remembering Slime was water based, I did a preliminary wipe down with a water soaked terry cloth rag. Tire and tube was removed from the rim and left to one side, to the side opposite the side the wire comes out. Rear wheel was loosened and torque arms removed. I lifted the wheel up out of the drop outs, allowing me to pull the tire and tube clear of the bike.

Then the clean up. Wet rag, rinsed occasionally, took care of the rim. Same process used on the tire. Not sure what caused it, but the tube had a split maybe 1/8" long, found only by trying to inflate it. Split not caused by any tool as I mount my tires using nothing but my hands. I had changed the tire recently, about 100 miles/3 weeks ago, so that likely had something to do with it. I suppose it may have been pinched somehow, but I intall the tire and tube with the tube partially inflated to avoid that. Wrote that failure off as a stuff happens issue.

Off to Walmart for a pre-Slimed, extra heavy duty, extra thick, 20 dollar tube.

Reassembled bike, reinflated tire, and we were back in business.

Total time, from the time I arrived home after my walk of shame, maybe 2 hours (including the Walmart experience).

Even after my worst case Slime disaster, there is no doubt regarding my further use of Slime. I remain convinced the tires stay inflated at the pressure you want with fewer checks, and are less like likely to be easily punctured. I'll risk this worst case scenario happening again in exchange for the reduce maintenance benefit without hesitation. -Al
 

Feliz

Well-Known Member
I've been covered in Slime a couple of times through my own fault but I've never had the humiliating experience like you did of pushing my bike home. I used Slime in my motorcycles for years and now in my eBikes and I've never had a flat while using it. Thank goodness it is water soluble.
 

FlatSix911

Active Member
Try using a bit of talcum powder when you install the new tube inside the tire... works wonders to eliminate pinched tubes. ;)
 

FlatSix911

Active Member
That was nothing. Try getting 'slimed' when the tube fails, and it just blows out everywhere (and in your face) while filling the tire. Akin to Ghostbusters. Then 'who ya gonna call' ? ;)

PS. Slime tires are not allowed on the premises. Period. End of story.
Mike, what do you recommend to customers?
 

Mike's E-Bikes

Well-Known Member
Mike, what do you recommend to customers?
If someone is not going to patch a tire in the field, then I'd suggest using a temporary tire sealant such as Zefal, which comes in a pressurized can, that puts the sealant into the tire, and also pumps the tube up a bit, followed by addition air injected, using something like the Planet Bike air kiss, which has a co2 cartridge and the head right on it to complete the tire fill. Works with shraeder or presta without an adaptor change. While This seal can last several months, the idea is to have your tire ready to go asap, to get you back home, so you won't have to walk that dreaded last mile. Then you take it to a repair shop as soon as you can, and have them change the tube. The zefal handles up to 2 mm tears or punctures. You don't ever want to have to rely solely on sealant for any length of time,and if a slimed tire doesn't seal right away, which happens in ~ 50% of cases or more (anecdotal but you hear this from a lot of users and shops) then you don't have any air, and it never seals. The zefal is designed to Coagulate better, and so it seals more quickly, and it can be designed that way since it's not subject to being in the tire all the time. Slime Sealant in a tire all the time, has to be more liquid and disperse evenly since its in there all the time, and thus won't necessarily help you out when you need it most. You hope it gets to the leak and stop it. But many times it doesn't. Like just what happened to AL.
 

FlatSix911

Active Member
Thanks for the recommendation



 

Attachments

Handlebars

Active Member
Mr Hicks, glad to hear that you were not hurt by the failure. I hadn't heard about that type of Slime tube occurrence before. If the slime had actually sealed up a split like that for a while, it's great stuff, but if it masks a split that happens during installation it's not so great. I will make sure to apply the Slime treatment only after testing out any tube installation, never using pre-Slimed tube.
 

AHicks

Well-Known Member
I've always used decent tubes, then added Slime. This time as you can imagine, while looking at all the choices available, I was pretty frustrated with my walk of shame still very fresh in mind. Even though I have a partial bottle of Slime on the shelf, the appeal of a thicker, pre-Slimed tube, won out. We'll see how that goes.

Interesting thought regarding the sequence of events. Did that split just occur somehow causing a total failure (blow out), or was the Slime holding that split, then let go? Maybe because the tire wasn't as fully inflated as I thought it was and allowed that to happen? I'll never know..... -Al