It's been decades since I had anything to do with patching a tube, and in a recent discussion of tires I had to confess that I know absolutely nothing about the current patch technology. A brief Google search brings up several products, but they generally seem to be designated for bike or motorcycle tires. Is that just because car tires are nearly all tubeless now? Anybody here have experience with patching tubes in recent years? If so, what works well?
The patches haven't changed much since the 50's,but they are harder to find. NAPA usually carries them,but a bike kit will also work.
Steve, I think that about any auto parts store would have a variety of patches and cement. That's where I got mine, but it has been a few years since I bought any patching supplies. I think the cement and at least some of the patches are Monkey Grip. Dave
The best patches are Camel hot patches. They don't work well on silicone rubber tubes, but they are the permanent solution to normal rubber tubes that catch a nail or an errant tire tool. I buy any that I see, and of course they are normally sold for pennies by folks who don't appreciate good tire patches. Of course they work great on tubeless tires, too.
To use them you must have a Camel patch clamp. These are also at garage sales all the time for zero dollars because no one has a clue what they do.
"tighten clamp and light fuelboard"
What do you use when you have no more fuelboards?
Years ago, when patching bicycle tires, we used to smear the rubber cement over the abraded portion of the tube, then light the cement with a match - had to apply the patch while the cement was still burning, otherwise it all burned off. Not really a great success ratio - timing was critical,'
What do you recommend for a T tire, without a fueldoard? Also, can a device be constructed with a large sized "C" clamp?
The fuelboards are part of the patches. If you run out of Camel patches, you run out of fuel boards. If you buy more patches, each has a fuel board on its back.
See the top picture above, there is a patch inside a clear plastic sleeve. The fuelboard is in the metal pan attached to the patch.
The clamps are out there, would be difficult to make one, as the two short "arms" are a little 'deeper" than the long ones--the fit into groves in the metal backing.
This was the ONLY way I was taught to patch a tube--and I patched a lot of bicycle tubes in my youth. Though quite a few tubes I patched were car tubes for tubing down the river--and these were the only patches that would hold through that kind of abuse!
Notice the clamp pictured on the box is for tire patching, not tube patching! Although no reason it couldn't be used on a tube, just don't fret that the clamp you find isn't like it!
Thank you both,
Something else to look for at flea markets and "clean out your house" sellers.
In Australia we have Vulcanizing Patches (different brands, not Camel) they usually come in a rectangular tin, the lid has a built in grate to roughen up the tube around the hole. The beauty of them is they last forever, so you can use them decades after they were manufactured.
Remove the cover on the patch, clamp it over the hole, dig into the fuelboard so it's easier to light it up. Set it on fire with a match wait till it cools down and the patch it done.
As Royce mentioned silicon rubber tube don't take to them well but either does the glue type.
I like to keep a few tubes on board. Have had to change a few flats on the side of the road, it's easier and quicker to just replace the tube than have to patch. In a few cases you would need a patch a few square feet in area after the tube blew itself apart.
In 10,000 miles in the USA I had one nail, two valve stems leak, one complete blowout and one tiny slow leak hole, The valve stems I just clamped, the blowout I threw the tube away and the slow leak I fixed when I got home. When I use one tube I replace it along the way so there is always 3 tubes under the seat. I carried the patches as a back up but never got to a stage where I was desperate enough to use them while travelling.
Is there a way to identify a silicone rubber tube? Are silicone tubes repairable?
Bluestem Farm & Ranch in Emporia has a large selection of patches (don't know about "hot" though). I usually stock up on some when I pass through that town.
Myers Tire Supply sells patches, cement, and cleaning fluid that is used to repair both tubes and tubeless tires. I have repaired car tires, truck tires, heavy truck tires, loader tires, grader tires, car tubes, truck tubes, backhoe tubes, and bicycles tubes for nearly 29 years now.
After roughing up the tire/tube the cleaning fluid is used to remove all the debris and impurities. The cement is applied and you must wait a few minutes for the cement to dry somewhat to a haze and then apply the patch and use a roller in all directions over the patch. That's it, your done. No clamping, just install tire/tube and air up.
Hope this was of help,
I have always done as Willis said, never had any problems yet. I haven't run into any silicone tubes as yet though. I too have the same questions as Ray Syverson. Dave
Even though I wasn't in the market for one, this morning I picked up this "5 Minute Vulanizer" at an estate sale in south Minneapolis. They're pretty common.
My dad used to have some smaller clamps lying around - I should check to see if he still has them.
I have a large clamp similar to the one depicted on the 83-U can. It's for doing tubes or tires. The problem is, I think the Vulcan patches are no longer available. They were a fire and environment hazard. Although I've recently seen a shop use more hazardous methods using fire. I didn't have the means to break a tractor tire off a 28" rim so it was worth the $30 tube patch price.