Tuesday, July 04, 2006


Yesterday, on my way home from work, I suddenly had a flad rear tyre on my bike. At the time I was about 4.5 km from home, travelling at 30 km/h. Fortunately, I didn't crash when my rear wheel suddenly started to "jump around" unabling me to control the bike properly.

Now, a flat tyre can happen, and I probably wouldn't have been so surprised and a bit angry if it wasn't because I, back in November after my first puncture on this new bike, got a special tyre with 1-year guarantee against punctures mounted. I use my bike a lot, and a couple of years ago, when I went to my preveous bike shop for different repairs on my old bike, I asked for the best tyres he could think of to avoid the annoyance of standing with a flad tyred bike. He recommented these special ones, telling me that he had had costumers using the same tyres for several years without any punctures. I couldn't really believe that to be true as the tyres I had on the bike at that time were kevlar tyres that were also supposed to be puncture-free - something they were clearly not. However, I followed his advise, and actually rode on those tyres for almost 2 years without any punctures whatsoever. At the end, the tyres were so worn down the wearing face was almost completely gone. Now I believed in the quality of those tyres!

So, when I bought my present bike last fall, I asked for these tyres again. I was told that the ones mounted on the bike was just as good, but of course I could come in if I had a flad tyre, and have them changed. I had that flad tyre within the first month! Thus, at the first check-up of the bike I asked to get a new hose and one of these special tyres for the rear wheel - I figured I could go a bit longer on the front wheel without having that one changed. Now, yesterday it was my rear wheel that had the puncture so I immediately called the bike shop, telling them that I would have to repair the hose and hand them the bike the next day to have this issue fixed. When I got home and started looking for the injury in the hose, I realized that the bike shop had reused the old hose, because it had the patch on it from my initial repair back in November! It turned out that this old injury was actually the cause of this new puncture, because the initially small hole that was readily covered by a patch had somehow expanded to a 2 cm cut in the hose! I could see that when lifting the old patch. It was difficult to patch up because I didn't have a patch big enough to cover the cut, so i had to put a new patch on top of the old one, and the new patch really wasn't big enough for this either, so I didn't trust this repair to retain its position. Sure enough! This morning I had to stop 7 times on my way to work to inflate the tyre. Grrr.....!!!!

When I handed the bike into the bike shop, he fortunately took care of it in half an hour, but I still had to pay the labour cost of him putting in a new hose. He inspected the tyre, and just as I didn't find any holes in that yesterday, he didn't either, so hopefully it will last untill I have the 1-year check-up on the bike next November. At that time I think the tyre will be so worn down that it will not be safe not to replace it.

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