I’ve gotten pretty good at fixing flats, especially in light of the rash of them I’ve had lately.
The other day, I was itching to do a ride, but the tire had gone flat the day before, so I had to fix it before getting out. No problem. I found the puncture and marked it so I could patch the tube, I found the teeny tiny shard of glass in the tire tread that caused the flat (probably all of 1/16th inch long) and got that out. Put the new tube in the tire, mounted it on the rim, and started to pump ‘er up.
I’ve learned my lesson about checking to make sure the tire is seated correctly — that the tube isn’t pinched between the rim and the tire bead. After a few pumps of air, I pulled the tire off the pump to check it. Problem. The bead was not seated correctly near the valve.
I let out all the air and re-seated the tire. Pumped it a little again, and checked.
Hm. This is getting old.
That tire refused to seat itself. The tell-tale “witness line” doesn’t lie — I still had a problem.
Let the air out again, reseat the tire again. Pumped it up — slowly and with less air than before. Worked the sidewall with my fingers. This time, it looked like it might be okay. I pumped it up to about 2/3rds of my preferred pressure.
Yeah, the third time’s the charm. I put it on the bike and pumped it up the rest of the way. Raised the wheel off the ground and gave it a spin. Everything seemed copacetic. But there was only one way to find out.
I patched the punctured tube and put it in my seatbag, got on my cycling clothes, and headed out. The day was a great one for a ride, sunny, temps in the mid to upper 60s. Wind light from the north.
I survived a 20-mile trip on roads that seemed to have more broken glass than usual, with no mishaps. Another flat, another successful repair — but I’m not sure why the bead didn’t want to cooperate.