Tire Puncture Survey for those using Sealant.

Uuzd4S

Member
I have a Fat Tire E-Bike running 26 x 4.0" tubed street tires @ 22psi & 24psi Front & Rear. Also, in 3yrs and 15,000miles, I've only got one slow leak up front. All my flats happen on the Rear Tire. This RipCurrent S weighs in @ 75lbs. Add my pannier, two other accessory bags, a pump, lights, larger seat and my Hydration Pak w/ spares and all up is near 100lbs. I am near 235lbs putting this E-Bike in @ near 335lbs all up, about 20lbs shy of it's max rated carrying capacity. That said, the loading is likely close to 80% Rear & 20% on the front tire, explaining why all my flats happen on the Rear Tire.
If you're running a different size Tire/Wheel or Tubeless setup, just mention it in your answer. Everybody's Welcome !
Just a quick and easy Survey Question for those running Tube Sealant's such as Slime, Muc-Off, FlatOut etc . . . The fundamental question is, in part, a hypothetical, so here's the setup.
So, your out on a fairly long ride (my fav route is about 23 miles, or about 90 min long), and half ways through your ride, you suddenly hear Tic Tic Tic Tic, the sound of a Tac/Nail Head protruding from your tire, striking the ground every revolution. You stop and realize it's punctured your Tube because you can see sealant has leaked from the punctured area. You've also got an appropriate amount of Sealant in your Tube per the label instructions for your tire size.
THE QUESTION IS; Do you pull the Tac/Nail and continue to ride (to help spread the Sealant around) in hopes the now larger hole will have a better chance of sealing Without a Tac/Nail moving slightly within the hole with every revolution? . . . or, do you leave the Tac/Nail in the Tire and ride for home in hopes the Sealant will have a better chance of sealing a smaller exit wound with the Tac/Nail still in place?
I'm not lazy. I don't mind fixing a flat as I'm Well prepared to do so while out on the trail. But in my experience, Sealant (and I use Slime 2 in 1, https://slime.com/pages/2-in-1-sealant), doesn't like having the Tac/Nail removed. That said, My last puncture was from the Largest Tac I've ever seen. It had the head of an Office Thumb Tac, about 3/8" dia, but the nail part was 1/8" thick and about an inch long. It looked like a "Thumbtac" from the head dimension but had a Roofing Nail attached to it. There's No Way this was a Thumbtac unless your using a foam billboard. Anyways, I pulled it and the Slime did it's job and got me home, which was a first for having pulled the Tac/Nail, which hasn't always worked.
Any and all opinions will be read. Be sure to mention weather your Tubeless or Not, your tire size & what brand of Sealant you prefer. Thanks to those with input and I Will post results when the responses have slowed and/or stopped, say in a couple of weeks. Thanks
 
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fooferdoggie

Well-Known Member
the biggest problem with sealants is they are designed for tires with no tubes. plus the PIS of your tire is a big issue. so more then 50 PSI and there is less chance it will work. Stans seemed to work sometimes at 70 psi. you also have to be able to remove what's in the tire. often I cant find it its either non or often pushed in all the way so you cant find it from outside so it won't seal. if it is raining it does not seem to work either.
so far Stans has worked the most times though not much. tried the slime and flat out with less reliable results. trying muck off right now.
 

Tars Tarkas

Well-Known Member
the biggest problem with sealants is they are designed for tires with no tubes.
That's not correct, at least regarding Slime. In fact, Slime has a product for tires with tubes and another product for tubeless. I don't know what Slime 2 in 1.

I'd pull the tack, or whatever, if I could get at it, but I'm also prepared to fix a flat or even replace the tube. I haven't had any flats though since I started using Slime.

TT
 

Uuzd4S

Member
Been riding Nobby Nic with Stan's race sealant since new. Race sealant can not be injected thru valve due to crystals/ granules to seal the puncture in the field.
I carry a tiny vise grip to pull off nails, tacs, thorns if it becomes noticeable while riding.
I carry mini pump and plugs.
I usually can detect an air lost from puncture by monitoring tires performance while riding. My tires minimum psi is 23.
I pulled this rusty nail off in the field a few weeks ago. I kept it for souvenir.
I bought $50 of power ball tickets that day. 🤣
NICE ! Excellent results, it's the only reason I've considered going Tubeless, is that repairs tend to take less labor. I once got a small Torx wrench stuck in my rear tire. it went flat in ten seconds once I pull it out : / Now that you mention it ALL my flats have been on the rear in three years and 15,000 road miles. Only one slow leak occurred on the Front tire last year. You make a Good Point about tire pressure that relates to Tire Loading. My E-Bike is Heavy (a 75Lb RipCurrent S), plus my pannier, two other accessory bags on the frame and my hydration pack w/ spares puts the bike at around 100 Lbs. Add to that my 235Lbs and the bike is near it's load rating of 274Lbs. That said, the weight is distributed close to 80% on the rear tire, making flats more likely. I've edited my question to include tire pressures, riding surfaces & a few other details, Thx !
 

DaveMatthews

Well-Known Member
I run tubeless. I had 3 flats in 3 months before switching. All three were blackberry thorns.
Since then (3.5 years) no flats.
Difference being I run 29/2.4 tires (used to be 27.5/2.6) so different platform for sure, and around 20 - 40 psi. I use ordinary Stans and so far it's been great.
Every once in a while I check the tires closely and sometimes see sealed gummy locations, and have pulled out thorn sized objects.
Works great so far.
 

Uuzd4S

Member
the biggest problem with sealants is they are designed for tires with no tubes. plus the PIS of your tire is a big issue. so more then 50 PSI and there is less chance it will work. Stans seemed to work sometimes at 70 psi. you also have to be able to remove what's in the tire. often I cant find it its either non or often pushed in all the way so you cant find it from outside so it won't seal. if it is raining it does not seem to work either.
so far Stans has worked the most times though not much. tried the slime and flat out with less reliable results. trying muck off right now.
Yep, your right, I did know that when I first looked for options to lower my Flat count . . . most sealants were made for tubeless setup's. I was VERY close to pulling the trigger on a Tubeless Setup when I went through some front hub wheel bearing issue's. Juiced took Weeks even answering weather I could get a new Bearing or Hub assy. They finally produded a Front Hub after weeks of waiting. To my surprise, it was American made, making their bikes aa mixed bag of Metric and American parts sizing. The end result was sticking w/ stock Wheels even though I'm running Tubeless Ready Vee Tire ZigZag's.
Thank You for the Feedback, I'm learning some valuable lessons here about Tube's vs the Tubeless ongoing discussion. I guess I have a last note to add. There was one more option open to dealing with reoccurring Flats and that was the TANNUS Foam Inserts. I don't think these inserts would be as effective on skinnier tires but on the wider 4.00" Fat Tires, they are making a difference. There IS a tradeoff in Labor with fixing flats vs maintaining these inserts W/ sealant onboard. I'm putting a Full Review together for the end of this riding season. I should have a few thousand miles on these Inserts by then. Thx Again, BW
 

Uuzd4S

Member
I run tubeless. I had 3 flats in 3 months before switching. All three were blackberry thorns.
Since then (3.5 years) no flats.
Difference being I run 29/2.4 tires (used to be 27.5/2.6) so different platform for sure, and around 20 - 40 psi. I use ordinary Stans and so far it's been great.
Every once in a while I check the tires closely and sometimes see sealed gummy locations, and have pulled out thorn sized objects.
Works great so far.
Nice Results! I'm guessing your "off road" mostly based on the Thorns you encounter. I'm sure many could benefit from your experience. Thx Again!
 

fooferdoggie

Well-Known Member
I use Schwalbe - Marathon Plus on two of my bikes and they do most of the heavy lifting but are harsh rides. at 70pis Stans worked sometimes the rest almost never.
all my wheels could go tubeless but I think in the long run the work it takes to change the sealant would be more work then changing the flat. Plus they don't hold air well so your topping the tire off far more often then the once a week or so they need now.
most people that use sealant are running low psi tires. Now my trek has 2.5" and I run them at 50 pis. I got my first flat and pulled the nail out and was pumping the tire up so it would seal when I rotated it and the valve came out when I gook off the co2 pump so I just changed the tube. the second flat seemed to have eased using flat out. a couple times after I found the tire low but then it held air. I tried specialized high psi sealant and it did not seem to do anything .
 

Tars Tarkas

Well-Known Member
Green slime are great inside golf carts.
Not for my bike .
Can you show photo a bottle of green slime? I will tell you if that is okay for ebike
10056_16oz_Tube_Front_2017_900x.jpg
 

Uuzd4S

Member
That's not correct, at least regarding Slime. In fact, Slime has a product for tires with tubes and another product for tubeless. I don't know what Slime 2 in 1.

I'd pull the tack, or whatever, if I could get at it, but I'm also prepared to fix a flat or even replace the tube. I haven't had any flats though since I started using Slime.

TT
The Slime 2 in 1 description from the Slime website. Of course it's All Sell but the basic take away is that it works for both applications, Tubeless or Tubed Tires.
 

Tars Tarkas

Well-Known Member
I have used this on my non motor bicycle and still had frequent flats. I think it's only recommended for tube equipped tires.
The other thing I don't like about it is, it sealed the valve on my tires. Took me awhile to figure out that the valve was seized. I thought my pump was faulty.
Yeah so Stan's sealants for me. Others who live with freezing temperatures in winter are probably using different brands.
Tubeless is the way I roll, I will never go back to Tubes again.
You could be in a much thornier area than me or maybe you used the wrong type of Slime. I've never had anything like the issues you describe. As for the stuck valve, I don't doubt you but it's hard to imagine how that could even happen. If it did, you'd just need to unscrew the core, rinse it off and put it back in, or put in a new one.

TT
 

Uuzd4S

Member
Tires needs to be tubeless ready.
I had Johnny Watts and it leaked sealant on the side wall.
No tube is the way to go. Tubes and patches are becoming a thing from the past. Obsolete man.
It's my understanding that the Tubeless Standards for Wheels (Rims) have more than one "type" as of about a year ago when I looked into it for my bike. Then there's always the many YouTube Ghetto Tubeless conversions of which some look viable : / That said, more successful Tubeless riders are willing to swear by the end result. It was never my intention to stir up the ongoing Yin vs Yang of Tubeless vs Tubed. There is Always a tradeoff with one system over another. I was only curious about peoples successes or preferences on weather to leave the nail and shoot for the barn where you can do a proper fix, or pull the nail hoping for the same results of making it home. I'm likely to eventually switch to Tubeless for this Fat Tire Bike. It seems the trending info is saying the lower pressure tires have a much better chance of sealing, which is Good for me!
I've got 15,000miles on this Fat Bike in three seasons of riding here in the NW. This season I adopted the TANNUS Foam Insert for the Rear only. It's working as I've had only 1 slow leak from a curled piece of metal that embedded into the foam . . kinda weird, but I found it and have been riding for months without a flat so far. The downside is actually following Tannus's instructions, which they fail to mention in their adverts. Many will complain thet these inserts were found paper thin between the tube and tire inner wall and I'm sure it's absolutely true. BUT, if you read the fine print, they suggest deflating the tire after each ride and not re-inflating till just before your ride. This allows the closed cell foam to re-expand to it's original shape. I've experimented with my 26 x 4.0 tires and they loose about 1 psi per hour for the first 4 or five hours. My rides rarely last more than 2 hrs, so it's not a problem. I do however deflate between rides and hit the hand pump 50 times before riding to get my 24psi in my 20 psi rated Vee ZigZags. I nearly always end up w/ 22.5 psi after a 90 min ride (my usual). The flat's are nearly gone but it's a pure tradeoff. You do your labor inflating and deflating the tire a Lot. I just remove the valve stem which presents a problem at times as Sealant will sometimes squirt out making a mess. I have a method now that averts that issue and just stick to the routine. One side effect from this is that a new tire will need to be removed and cleaned of rubber bits of debris as the initial 20 to 30 cycles of re-inflation wears the little bits that cling onto new tires. Kind of like the bits of rubber knobs and flashing on the outside of a new tire, that same stuff exists on the inner wall and will need cleaning after 20 or so cycles.
I'm sure by now your convinced that Tubeless is the way to go given you buy new wheels, get them laced up and deal with the sealant goo with tire changes.
 

linklemming

Well-Known Member
For my riding (near denver co), goatheads are the major source of flats offroad.

In 1999, I encountered about 30+ goatheads when I had an off trail excursion. No amount of patching/tubes got me back on the road so I had to call a friend.

I started using Stans (in tubes) way back then and have had less then 3 or so flats since then (hard to recall as it never seems to occur). My tires usually have 10+ goatheads in them at any one time. The flats I have gotten were simply fixed by injecting a 2 oz bottle of stans (worse case was running over several nails on a wooden palette used to cross some shallow water)

I have a simple routine of replacing tubes once per year (with fresh stans), and a 6 month stans refresh.

I have tried tubeless several times (with stans), stans in tubes just suits me better for a ton of reasons.

Many other things to try like flatout but my stans formula has worked for over 20 years.
 

Uuzd4S

Member
Dis one of them threads about personal preferences. Saddles and pedals are personal for me. Tyre sealant are same.
I found on my tubeless tires set up. Air tends to leak from the bead/rim.
Once weekly I wash my bike with soapy water and squirt around entirely on wheels and all over the bike. Little bubbles started to form.
Yupper, most poles Are about personal preference. I'm simply looking to see where it balances out and maybe benefit from the info. I think I made it too complicated, I need to work on that : / None the less, your input is Appreciated! TY
Happy Trails !
 

m@Robertson

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
I have been thru the exact scenario the OP asks about many, many times. I've tried it both ways. I keep a pair of needlenose pliers at the ready in a handlebar bag or someplace similar that I don't have to dig for it because... you pretty much have to pull that nail to get a 100% positive resolution. I'm talking fat tires here, both tubed and tubeless with FlatOut as the sealant for both tubed and tubeless installations (I have both) in active service).

Lets say its a nail, partially inserted and now bent-over sideways. If you don't pull it, its going to get knocked around on every revolution and *probably* will prevent the tire from sealing. the sealant will certainly slow the leak, and if you are lucky it will seal it, but for me, on city streets, that answer is "usually not". The way to do it is as soon as you hear the tictictic stop, jump off, grab the pliers, pull the nail and then lower the kickstand so you can rock the back tire of the bike up off the ground a touch. Then hit the throttle which will cause the wheel to spin and get a bunch of sealant to the hole. Then jump on and hit the throttle again. I am a PAS kind of guy but holes in tires cause me to toss appearances out the window and I throttle that sucker to a) get me closer to home and b) let the sealant spread out on the underside and do its work.

If I let the nail sit, I stand a much better chance of losing air and having to stop. Then pull the nail and get out the battery pump to reinflate so I can do the above described fast roll.

EDIT: Same goes for glass and metal strips. In fact I have the pliers because glass and metal shards don't shred my pliers like they do my fingertips. A knife blade works too but using the blade on tire tread gives me the willies.

EDITEDIT: Tire size. Forgot that. Tubeless: Vee Snowshoe XLs 26x4.8. Tubed: Surly Lou 26x4.8(?) and Arisun Big Fatty 26x4.9. Tubeless sealants I have used Stans and a couple different flavors of Orange Seal but found Flatout to be head/shoulders above them for puncture protection and the fact it never dries up. For tubes, I have gone thru Slime, Stans and Orange Seal again before Flatout. This is where I first used Flatout in, I think, 2020. Those tire sizes are Vee Speedster 26x3.5, Arisun Big Smoothy 26x4.0, Arisun Big Fatty 26x4.9, Surly Edna 26x4.3, Vee Snow Avalanche 26x4.7 and Vee Snowshoe XL 26x4.8.
 
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Uuzd4S

Member
For my riding (near denver co), goatheads are the major source of flats offroad.

In 1999, I encountered about 30+ goatheads when I had an off trail excursion. No amount of patching/tubes got me back on the road so I had to call a friend.

I started using Stans (in tubes) way back then and have had less then 3 or so flats since then (hard to recall as it never seems to occur). My tires usually have 10+ goatheads in them at any one time. The flats I have gotten were simply fixed by injecting a 2 oz bottle of stans (worse case was running over several nails on a wooden palette used to cross some shallow water)

I have a simple routine of replacing tubes once per year (with fresh stans), and a 6 month stans refresh.

I have tried tubeless several times (with stans), stans in tubes just suits me better for a ton of reasons.

Many other things to try like flatout but my stans formula has worked for over 20 years.
Thanks, didn't know that Stan's would work in Tubes. I'm getting 50/50 results with the Slime 2 in 1 https://slime.com/pages/2-in-1-sealant It's supposed to work for either setup, tubed or tubeless. I Have heard often that Stan's is preferred by many, as with your experiences. I bought two 32oz jugs of Slime 2in1 from that Jungle E-Commerce site for $5 bucks each. Think I'll likely shop for Stan's next tube change.
Have kind of developed a similar tube maint routine. One year or three patches (not close together), and they're swapped out for new. The Tubed vs Tubeless labor, conversion costs and maint involved can be somewhat better for some particular tire sizes (at least that's what I'm hearing), but leans more towards personal preferences I think. Wasn't my intention to open the debate tween which is better, just to see how many pull out the nail vs how many leave it be till they get home.
Don't see many Goatheads on my usual biking paths/roads, and 95% of my miles are on pavement/asphalt. But you make an excellent point I hadn't considered. My flat count was every ten days or so, due to nails, tac's, metal tools/pieces and here in the Portland/Vancouver area I've found some bikeways sabotaged with long tac's & brads w/ heads as both these types will sit on the head with the pointy part skyward. That, is why I went to the TANNUS Foam inserts which are working Gr8 but there's a couple of tradeoff's. In the fine print, after purchasing the inserts, it states you should deflate the tube between rides to allow the foam to fully expand again after the ride. It compresses a bit causing a pressure drop of 1psi per hour. I rarely ride more than 90 min so I just give an extra 2psi before the ride. A second tradeoff is the added weight and likely "out of balance" condition it may cause which becomes noticeable @ 25+mph. The third issue with these inserts is the rubbing and flexing against a new tire's inner walls. This causes Lots of tiny bits of Rubber to be polished into a chunky dust like material. I found that pulling the insert after 75-150 miles and cleaning the chunky rubber flashing particle's that have loosened, they don't come back again. And I do use foot powder tween the tube and insert and tween the tire and insert cause I want these materials to migrate to their Happy Place. It's working, but you end up trading off Tube puncture labor for Tire deflation/inflation and a one time initial rubber chafage cleaning. I'll take it cause it cause the added labor fits My schedule and Flats Do Not. Completely Bored, I don't blame you, Sorry : /
Thank You for your inputs, I'm still learnin ! Happy Trails !
 

Uuzd4S

Member
I run tubeless. I had 3 flats in 3 months before switching. All three were blackberry thorns.
Since then (3.5 years) no flats.
Difference being I run 29/2.4 tires (used to be 27.5/2.6) so different platform for sure, and around 20 - 40 psi. I use ordinary Stans and so far it's been great.
Every once in a while I check the tires closely and sometimes see sealed gummy locations, and have pulled out thorn sized objects.
Works great so far.
WoW, that's significant. It's testimonials like this that make me want to go Tubeless. I'm on my last option to alleviate flats in my 26 x 4.0" tubed Fat Tires. I'm giving the TANNUS Foam inserts a try for this entire summer season. So far so good, but at a price. Your basically trading inconvenient flat repair labor for a more convenient set of labors that can be scheduled. I've written a couple of paragraphs on the TANNUS experience elsewhere in this thread. If ur curious, it should be easy to find.
None the less, I'm impressed with your results and Thx for the inputs ! Happy Trails !