Too much time on my hands...been reading old threads.
I wonder, if you get a flat on a wood spoke non-demountable tire, is it ever done to remove one side of the tire from the rim, snake the tube out where the puncture is (assuming you know) patch the hole and re-install? Everything I've read shows people removing the tire from the wheel and replacing the whole tube, even at the side of the road.
Tim, try it and report your results. I would be interested to find out how you get on.
Allan from down under.
I use to be able to change a tube by only taking off one side of the tire but since my hands are no longer as strong I can’t. The major problem is removing the valve stem and then putting a new one. It needs real strength which is no longer there in the left hand. In Richmond I tried but gave up and took the tire off completely to replace the tube.
I've been given to understand that the rubber compound used in some modern inner-tubes is incompatible with some kinds of rubber patches. -But back when I was a kid, rubber was rubber and patching bicycle inner-tubes was something we did all the time. -We rounded off the corners of the patch, roughed up the rubber around the puncture with a file, applied the rubber cement, lit it with a match and let it burn for a few seconds, then peeled the patch and pressed it on. -It worked and it wasn't rocket science. -
I suppose the thing to do would be to contact the manufacturer or parts dealer and ask, point-blank, about how to go about patching the particular inner-tube product they sell. -It's only reasonable to expect them to know the answer or find out for you.
But yes, in the case of balloon bicycle tires, we kids could get the job done by dismounting only one side of the tire, yanking out the damaged part of the tube (assuming it wasn't near the air-valve) patching the tube, stuffing it back in and levering the tire back on. -Assuming it can be done with a Model T's clincher tire, there remains the problem of inflating the darned thing to at least 55 psi. -That has to be a pretty daunting endeavor with a hand-pump and you'd need a place to plug in an electric pump. -But there's one other consideration: When a clincher tire goes flat while the car is moving, it frequently occurs that the tire and tube part company with the rim and the air-valve, being fastened to the rim with a nut, is thus ripped out of the inner-tube. -When that happens (as it did to me), you'll need a spare inner-tube, and I think pushing the spare tube's air-valve through the little hole in the rim with the tire half-mounted would be quite a challenge.
I often only lift one side off the rim when patching or replacing a tube. Often, if I know where the leak is (like a nail), I only pull about eight or ten inches of tube out and patch it against the side of the tire.
My problem in recent years is that tubes, patches, and other tire related products no longer seem to be compatible with each other. The chemical patches hold at pressures up to about 30 psi, but when I air up to the 60 plus needed to hold a clincher onto the rim, the patch (even pressed between the tube and tire) is lifted off the tube within a few hours.
Wow! What a wealth of info (and more questions to ponder....) Like Bob, I used to patch tubes as a kid. Not knowing any better, I assumed that modern tubes came with a compatible patching system... would I be correct to say that today tubes are usually thrown away if holed?
I have a solution to the problem of airing up tires on the road. As an old-time SCUBA diver, I took an old (cheap) regulator, cut the 2nd stage (mouthpiece) off and attached an air chuck. Used with a small "pony" tank, I have a ready source of air that is delivered at 100 psi. A little tank will pump up a whole bunch of tires. Not owning a T as yet (thus the time on my hands) I use it with my 1952 Willys Army Jeep to refill tires after dropping the pressure to run thru areas of soft sand and mud. A club or group might do well to invest in such a rig to carry on tours - it would save a lot of pumping even though it is obviously not period correct :-) Dive shops often have old rental regulators "in the back" that you could get for a decent price,likewise the tank. Hydro every 5 years and you can get fills at dive shops, local fire departments, etc. I fill mine about once a year. The pony tank is small enough to fit under the back seat of the Jeep and unlike a typical portable air tank, is pressurized up to around 3000 psi! I use a 30 cu ft tank mostly, but also have 80's and 100's available that would fit in a support vehicle quite nicely. Anyone who would like more info can feel free to contact me.
Back to the reason for this post, I'm looking at a T that has clincher tires and my old friend and T expert has warned me that they could be a "bugger" if I got a flat when away from home. Demountable tires would be a good solution but my wallet may not support such a thing right now if I get the T.
Tim, there's no doubt that demountables are much more convenient to deal with in the event of a puncture on the road, and if you're going to be involved with long-distance touring in caravan with other brass cars, you'll save not only yourself, but everybody else on the tour, a whole lot of time by being able to change a flat like an Indy pit crew.
So, why would you want to go with non-demountables?
Well, reason #1 is, if we're talking a brass car, it'll probably come that way and you won't have any choice unless you'd care to make a $1,000+ investment to change them over. -That was my situation. -The trade-off is, in that case, demountables correct and authentic.
Reason #2 is that, if your wheels happen to be clear varnished instead of painted black, or red or green with white pin-striping (common brass Model T colors), the wooden felloe adds to the really nice look (Demountables don't have wooden felloes).
Reason #3 is flat tires are a relative rarity for folks like us because we don't put very many miles on our Flivvers. I went seven years before accidentally discovering a roofing nail in the street and the result of that was a flat-bed ride back home (courtesy of Hagerty Insurance's roadside assistance policy), where I fixed the tire at my leisure in a nice, cool garage with cold drinks and a nearby bathroom.
Bob C, I love that whole reason number three thing! I had to laugh out loud at the last part of it.
I don't know if I would recommend listening to me or not. I still keep thinking that I must be doing something wrong. But I have been patching inner tubes since my bicycle at age ten and plugging tubeless tires for nearly a half century now. For most of all that time, they worked fine. I patched inner tubes for my relatively modern pickup with widow-maker split rims and ran some of those tubes through multiple sets of new tires, some for as much as 300,000 miles (NO exaggeration!). I patched model T tubes over 40 years ago that are still holding air. So why I wonder is it that patches in the recent past ten years won't hold? Is it the patch that is bad? Or the materials the tube is made out of? Or is it me?
One should always carry a spare tube if one does not have a mounted spare holding air properly. The problem with spare tubes, is that they usually develop cracks where they are folded and usually go bad in about a year.
Who makes the majority of today's tubes? I might make some inquiries and see if a "special" patch kit is required to repair them.
The tubes come from different sources. I've seen some from India and some from China, and I believe I had one that was marked EEU. A nice feature of some is that they can be used for both 30 x 3 and 30 x 3½ tires. That's handy if your car has both sizes.
Having had flats on the road, I can tell you a couple of things.
1 Original Model T Ford tire irons make changing a tire the job from Hell. I now carry three 24" irons from HF. Recently I mounted a 30 x 3½ clincher with them. It took four minutes.
2 A foot pump is surprisingly efficient. But you want it attached to a board to keep it upright on rocky or unlevel ground.
I run ancient tubes and even with numerous patches I find them to be far superior to the modern crap. There must be something in them that makes the patches useless. They work fine on old tubes but not the new ones. I have not found anything that works on them so far but would love to know if there is a way to patch them as I am running out of good used ones. I would add that the new tubes seem to loose air all the time as well.
Last time I put on new non-demountable tires a few years ago on my '12 Torpedo our club bought a batch of tires and tubes. I put in new tubes made in Mexico which were much heavier than the other foreign tubes.
I didn't have a flat or loose any air for several years and many miles.
Last year I had two flats from road hardware puncturing the tire and tube. Both cases I had no trouble getting the tires off cause they passed me going down the road and one on the freeway. Of course the stem was ripped off the tube. Lucky they both rolled to side of the road where I stopped and got out my spare tube that I store inside the Acetylene Generator with my tire pump and patches and replaced the tube and tire, aired up and took off with only a slight delay.
I have not had any trouble with my tubes cracking and have had good luck with the new "Quality" bicycle patches but it's been a long time since I used one..
Last few times I've changed tires always with the wheel on the car, I insert the stem in the rim at the bottom of the rim. Then I slightly lower the car to hold the tire on the rim against the ground and then do both beads at the same time. It'd be real nice to have three hands for the last part of the tire over the rim.
I inquired of Park Tool about their patch kits and this was their response:
"Our Tube & Tire repair kits are designed small, allowing them to be easily carried in a under-seat pac or jersey pocket for bicycles…but inner tubes/tires are made from the same material on bikes/cars/tractors/trailers…Model T’s…etc.
Bicycle tires are used with air pressure anywhere from 15 to 150 psi…and 65 psi is within the range used in bicycle tire pressures.
You are correct…the materials in inner tubes have changed, the surface becomes ‘slicker’ and harder for a patch to stick, and they do not adhere for as long a time.
Our VP-1 has vulcanizing fluid (rubber cement) and rubber patches.
Our GP-2 includes pre-glued patches.
Most users prefer one over the other which is why we offer two styles. (I only use the GP-2 Pre-glued)
Keep in mind that both are ‘cold-kits’ and designed to get a rider back so the inner tube may be replaced."
My take-away from this is that patches can be used for a temporary fix but once holed, a tube should be replaced. Is that the consensus of the Model T community?
Yes but it shouldn't have to be that way! Being a cynic I suspect they intentionally make the tubes difficult or impossible to patch so they can sell more tubes. Why did they change the materials in the first place? The old tubes were just fine and could be patched easily enough for continued service!