What’s the Longest You’ve Gone Without a Flat?

Not Darryl.

My friend Darryl over at Lovingthebike just had a flat tire the other day.  The remarkable thing about that is, he says it was his first flat in two years!  He thinks the last flat he had was prior to November, 2008.

I don’t have flats at the rate I used to, but I still have several each year.  My most recent one was in late December, which prompted me to buy a new set of tires (no flats on those yet – knock wood).  So I’m a lousy candidate for the long-run-between-flats club.

But maybe you’ve had a different experience.  Can you beat Darryl’s 27-month record of no flats?  Tell us about it.

And more importantly, tell us why you think you managed to go so long.  Was it dumb luck?  Are you really good at steering your bike away from grungy gorp on the road? Do you use better equipment than the rest of us?  Maybe we can all get some pointers that will help us make 2011 the Year of No Flats.

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13 thoughts on “What’s the Longest You’ve Gone Without a Flat?

  1. Cool, I’m glad you’ve taken my flat and ran with it. I’m still feeling the shock of my long running streak coming to an end. It is totally true, I honestly can’t remember the last time I had to fix a flat…and it was over two years and 20,000kms at least since it happened. That includes riding in Canada, the US, and a bunch of various terrains.
    My only explanation is a lot of luck….and maybe being so short and closer to the ground helps me see stuff on the road more easily (hahahhaha).

    Darryl

  2. When I bought my current road bike (August, 2008) I started keeping track of rides and equipment. I haven’t flatted, yet — a bit over 8200 miles. I wore out the stock Bontrager Race Lites, changed out the Specialized All Conditions while they still had some tread because I didn’t like them, and have had Continental GP4s since. Rides are usually on suburban and rural roads, bike trails and the occasional gravel road. I attribute my flat-less streak solely to good luck: no talent involved.

  3. My 1st 1800 miles I didn’t have a flat on the road and in the span of a week I had 2. One I ran over a big piece of glass and ruined my tire and another was at the veloway on a wet day.

  4. I don’t always get flats but when I do I make it count… Last year I flatted 3 miles into the Fredricksburg Road Race and then at the State Championship Road Race, 5 miles in. Both times it took the wheel truck 2 to 4 minutes to reach me, thus leaving me DFL. At least on both occasions I didn’t finish DFL but was able to move up to the middle of the finishers.

  5. I’ve haven’t had a flat on the road in 6 years – however, I have had two in the garage in that span. That is, it lost air over night due to a failure in the tube.

    I can only attribute it to being vigilant scanning the road, using good tires and some luck.

  6. I hadn’t had a flat (mountain or road) in something like 4 years until a couple months ago – was pumping up my tires and broke the end of the (presta) valve.

    I still haven’t had an on-road flat in a ridiculously long time. I’m pretty careful what I ride over though – and most of my miles are commuter miles, where I bike often but not terribly far.

  7. I’m new to cycling via triathlon. 2010 was my first year. I logged 1000 miles in 2010 with no flat so far. I only weigh 130lbs, so maybe that has something to do with it. Funny thing is, though, I kind of would like to get a couple flats so I can become better versed at replacing tires/tubes. It’s only a matter of time before I get a flat in a race.

    • Ken, You don’t have to wait for a flat to practice changing a tube. Just do it. If you want to simulate the experience of a flat, you can always let all the air out of your tire before you change it.

  8. Never had a flat on my roadie in probably 6k miles.
    My commuter; however, is another story….an undetected loose spoke created mayhem for 2010….wheel fixed and trued so I’m hopeful 2011 is better. Also experienced spontaneous tread separation on both tires in 2009…occurring about 20 seconds apart on the commuter…Sp Armadillos with less than 200 miles on them….sounded like gunfire! Yikes! LBS rescued me on that one since I was within a mile or so of the shop and comp’d the tires.

  9. 1.5 years of commuting/city errand riding in Portland OR, no flats.

    Equipment: Surly LHT, Schwalbe Marthon Supreme (35mm, will change to 40 mm soon), tubes by Schwalbe. I’m 220 lbs, the bike is heavy steel with a bunch of commuter gear (2 meals, change of clothes, repair/flat kit, lighting, racks, etc), call it 40 lbs. That’s a lot of weight, so narrow, high pressure tires would be a poor choice, due to both comfort & pinch flats.

    I check air pressure once a week, set pressure at 75 psi. Kind of a compromise between comfort & preventing pinch flats. No science involved, just my best guess. The recommended pressure is 55-85 psi.

    The city of Portland has been doing an outstanding job of street-sweeping, at least on my routes, so that’s probably doing the most good in preventing flats.

    Superstition: As long as I have my full flat repair kit with me, it won’t happen. The day I forget it, I’ll get front & rear flats.

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