I mentioned in the thread below that I was going to obtain a CO2 tire inflator and some 45 gram CO2 cartridges and show a comparison of them to a tire pump. I did some calculations in the earlier thread and determined that it would take three 45g cartridges to fill a 30 x 3.5 inch tire to 60 psi.
The inflator kit finally arrived today, so here is a picture of the inflator head and six cartridges (enough to fill two tires) next to a double-barrel pump that I bought through T-bay last year.
The inflator head and cartridges take up less space than the pump, but then again, six cartridges will only inflate two tires.
The pump weighs 3.8 pounds and the inflator head with six cartridges weighs 2.6 pounds.
Here is the brand of inflator that I bought, it is marketed for motorcycles, but you could also use it on ATVs.
As far as cost, the inflator kit came with two cartridges, plus I bought four extra cartridges, total cost was just under $100.00 on Amazon. This is close to but a little less than what I spent for my pump on T-bay.
One note of caution - the cartridges get VERY cold when they are discharged, be sure to wear a glove or hold the cartridge with a doubled-up cloth or rag to keep from freezing your hand!
I'm not advocating one approach over the other, but offering up the information so that folks can make their own decisions.
Nitrogen is a better gas. The molecules are reportedly larger, so they won't leak through the rubber.
What if everyone inflated their tires with C02 ? Maybe that would seal it away and save the earth!
A little fun to have with your local tire shop guy. . .
As many tire shops automatically fill tires with Nitrogen at no extra cost,
itís no big deal, but I got to thinking about the benefits.
The common name given to the atmospheric gases we breath is air.
By volume, dry air contains 78.09% nitrogen, 20.95% oxygen,
0.93% argon, 0.039% carbon dioxide, and small amounts of other gases.
So when I have a some leakage in a tire filled with atmospheric gases, can
I assume that the 78% nitrogen content is not leaking as much as the other gases ?
If so when I bring the tire back up to the correct pressure with atmospheric
gases, I will have increased the percentage of nitrogen content now in the tire
Considering that the nitrogen compressors are only 93 to 95% effective, it would
seem that the lack of moisture in the original nitrogen fill is the real benefit.
Art, argon atom is bigger, maybe your theoretical tire will fill up with that inert gas, then you can use it to shield welding!
Just a note, I don't know if there's a enough in the tires to make a difference. I play paintball and am used to fooling with CO2 a lot. The pressure of CO2 varies pretty dramatically with the temperature. A normal 20 oz tank of CO2 usually comes out at about 850ish PSI, if it sits in the sun for just a few minutes that same tank can start putting out 1400+ PSI. You would probably have to take a mostly empty tube and fill it completely with CO2 for it to be noticeable in a tire, but I bet if you did and lived up north where it can be 85 in the summer and under zero in the winter, combined with the way the rubber can expand and contract with the temp and you could have some pretty seriously different tire pressures. Just a thought.
$100 to fill up 2 tires seems a little expensive to me. A tire pump will inflate lots of tires for many years but lots of horse power required.
Those little cylinders (Co2) get cold and frosty--I have used them in BB guns and rocket cars but now use them to euthanise bats for rabies testing.
I would hate to spend $100 to inflate a tire that just goes back flat...a patch kit, tire irons and a pump seems more prudent.
I paid about $13 for the foot operated tire pump I keep under the back seat of the car I take on tour. It gets a 30 X 3 1/2 tire up to 65 PSI in a minute or two. I got mine from Pep Boys but you can get them almost anywhere, from Target to Wal Mart to Harbor Freight.
On the other hand, CO2 is what's being blamed for global warming. If every tire was inflated with CO2, and then people started releasing the CO2 when they had a flat, Earth would succumb to an early death. Yeah right!
True, the CO2 cartridges are a one-time use item and they aren't cheap. But, it gets back to the question - how many flats do you plan to have?
My car has demountable rims and I carry a mounted, fully inflated spare tire (along with a patch kit). So, for flat #1 on the road, I would install the spare and drive home, then fix the flat tire at home and inflate it with my floor-standing air compressor.
The CO2 inflator would only get used if I had a second (or third) flat before I got home, in which case I would have to de-mount a tire, patch the tube, then re-mount the tire and inflate it with the CO2.
I would carry a spare tube, except that I have read on this forum about tubes failing at the folds if they are left folded for any length of time, so I leave my spare tube(s) at home in a dark, dry place with just enough air in them to allow them to hold their shape.
I have three bicycles and ride each of them on a fairly regular basis. In each, I carry a spare tube, a patch kit, and a CO2 inflator (with three cartridges) and have found them to be very practical. The bicycle tubes don't seem to have the failure-at-the-fold problem that has been reported here for the current Model T tubes.
To each his own...
You have really bad luck if you have a flat tire and change it then suddenly have a second and third flat tire. Are your roads made of nails and scrap iron? Those little cylinders will refill a tire with a hole in the tube and it will then go flat again. I just don't understand your post about filling a flat tire with $100 of throw away BB gun cylinders to go a few feet on a flat tire.
If a tire goes flat it has a hole in the tire and tube and needs to be fixed, putting air in a hole means it will leak right back out and be flat again. I don't understand why to carry $100 of free air for a tire with a hole in it.
I carry the same type of foot pump Royce has.
It easily fits in a tool box and using a foot is a lot easier than wearing out your back and shoulders using a conventional hand pump....... .......especially at 60-70 pounds.
The recommended way to air up tires (especially Beaded edges ones) is to first pump them up to so that you spread out the beads into the rims and take out any creases in the tube and bounce or hit with a rubber hammer around the tire then deflate and pump up to full pressure.
A normal air pump seems the best way to do this. Having over the years had a few flat tires on the road I always take the extra time to fit the tires and inflate them carefully, especially if I intend driving on for a few hundred miles on my trip.
Their is always a chance it won't be a simple exchange of tubes and one can find a second or more fit is needed ( especially with the poor quality tubes today) so even though CO2 may be a good idea its probably not a practical one.
Tim, I'm sorry you misunderstood my post, I never meant to imply that I would inflate a tire that still had a hole in it. I would dismount the tire, patch the tube, re-install the tire, then inflate the (now repaired) tire.
I plan to carry the CO2 inflator and cartridges in my running board toolbox and leave the pump at home. The first time I have to use the inflator on the road, I'll report back (truthfully) to this forum on how it went.
Why not use Hydrogen in our tires?
Hydrogen molecules are small so the leakage will match the oil dripping from everyplace.
Hydrogen is lighter than air so it will make the car float over bumps.
Hydrogen is a reducing agent at elevated temperatures so it will stop tubes from oxidizing.
Hydrogen is flammable so you can use a tire to start a camp fire.
And best of all - you will fit right in with the tree lovers that want the World to use hydrogen fuel cells to power cars.
Almost forgot - Hydrogen will not turn live birds into aviary burgers like a windmill.
Another advantage of using hydrogen in the tires is the sudden fireworks display that occurs when something causes a spark near a leaking tire.
I once drove a Model A off road and ran over cactus. I got several flat tires, and the needles which were in the casings kept working into the tubes until I replaced all the affected tires. Maybe you have something in the casing which keeps working its way into the tube causing flat tires. Be sure to remove from the casing everything which would puncture the tire. Also if you don't use a flap in the tire, you could have a problem with a sharp place on the rim cutting into the tire.
The upside to having the CO2 inflator in the toolbox is the compact size. This goes back to the thread earlier this year about what to throw into the toolbox. There is a slight weight savings in the CO2 versus the pump, and there's a definite space savings.
As for the cost of the CO2 tanks, you may end up buying enough for two tires and never needing them. You may end up spending an equal amount on a period-correct pump and refurbishing it to operating condition. I guess it depends on how often you need to inflate a flat on the road.