I have been looking around lately for a quality inner tubes to suit my 1910 that has the 30 x 3 1/2 Tyres oops Tires!
The best I can find to date weigh 1kg (twice the weight of others) and has the metal valve stem. The problem is they drop pressure from 60psi down to 30 over a few weeks. Older styles made of 100%Butyl hold full pressure for months. I have been told that Butyl holds pressure 10 times better than other compounds.
One UK company is working on making Quality tubes in this size but won’t be available to at least mid next year.
Another company offer Michelin Tubes in the metric size of
760 x 90 which is very close to 762 x 88.9 size (converted from 30 x 3 1/2)
Has anyone had experience with using these tubes?? I viewed a sample tube recently from the same supplier but in a different but similar size and boy it would have weighed three or four times the weight and obviously has a much thicker material used
Thanks Alan in Western Australia
Alan, any clue where the Michelin metric tubes are made ?
Have you tried changing valves in those pressure-losing tubes?
Butyl rubber is much less permeable than natural rubber. However it has high hysteresis losses and is not suitable for use in radial tires (overheats).
Ah, so now we know it was butyl rubber tubes that caused white tires to turn brown, resulting in the fellers who had that happen going highly hysterical ?
Rich, I enquired with a company in the United Kingdom so can only assume they are made their or possibly in Germany due to the metric sizing. Check out (Longstone.com)The other company who intends to make that size Tube next year is definitely in the UK (blockleytyre.com)and his business was commenced as he was sick of inferior tubes and tyres.
I’ve yet to confirm if the tubes are supplied with a metal stem.
Steve, yes, changed valves and also fitted air tight caps and they still drop pressure. It’s a common problem for us here.
Can’t comment on the browning Tyre issue but Butyl is definitely the compound needed for the best leak prevention so I’ve been told
Alan in Western Australia
Alan, thank you for that information. It's encouraging when folks fed up with inferior products endeavor to correct the situation ! My post on browning tires was a feeble attempt at humor . . . my apologies.
No need to apologise mate.
If we can solve the Tyre and Tube issues and work
with someone like Blockley ill be a happy fella!
Alan, you are right about the poor quality of tubes available, unfortunately over the years the demand went down so much on the old sizes that companies cut corners, quality of material and even substituted other sizes to make up the sales.
50 years ago when you purchased a 30 x3 1/2" tube you got a thick correct rubber compound tube that when inflated produced what was required.
Over the years the thickness was reduced, the cross section was often also made smaller till often you had a tube that when installed it had to blow up so much its thickness became as thin as a party balloon. Add to that a rubber stem which was not designed for pressure over about 30 psi and you tire problems multiplied.
Here is a photo taken of one of the rubber stem valves. The photo was taken on the Pinchin Creek tour in 2011. The only place the rubber if fixed to the metal stem is at the very end of the valve, just a small ring around the metal stem. You can see the white powder inside the tube has been able to creep up the stem along with the air till it eventually breaks through the vulcanised end resulting it the tube failing.
Not so bad if you hear the valve leaking whilst in the garage or a car park. but can end in complete disaster if you have it go whilst on the road at speed, not only do you loose the tube but often the tire ends up toast as well.
Here is a photo of two tubes the one with the metal valve is a 1950's purchase the smaller one a 2008 version. Not only is the early tube twice the weight of the later one the later one is thinner to start with before being expanded into the tire.
The old tubes used to hold pressure for long periods so the rubber compound must have been altered also. A problem with the butyl rubber is its hard to patch them as both the vulcanized patches and the new glue on ones don't like sticking to the rubber. That also means you are at a disadvantage if you get even a small pin hole in a tube. I lost this tube in British Columbia in 2011. Note the split in the tube it goes nearly 1/2 way around, the tire was also wrecked. I think I still have ringing in my right ear from when it went off!!
Given a choice I would happily pay twice the current price for a decent tube, at least I would know that my chances of having tires blow out wrecking the tube and maybe the tire as well would be reduced and possibly stopped. I'm getting too old to be changing tires on the side of the road anymore.
I don't understand why they dropped U.S. made tubes in the first place? There has to be a greater demand now for these tubes than there was 40 or fifty years ago.
I find the same as Peter Kable.
Two months ago experienced rubber stem tube purchase.
Not only did the rubber stem not fit the rim hole in the Ford wire wheel, the tube was marked "20" inch..... which made for a tight fit on the rim with a minimum of air before completely mounting the new tires.
Seems that we are being forced to pay more for metal stem tubes and associated hardware.
No American rubber companies are making tubes.
The rubber stem tubes are 9/16"..... try pushing that thru a 1/2" wheel/rim and will certanly end up with leakage as Peter Kable described/picture.
Over a hundred years ago, Michelin Tire operated a plant in Milltown, NJ USA, not far from where my family lived.