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I am making a 4" wide, 14 gauge mild steel sheet tire liner

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    I am making a 4" wide, 14 gauge mild steel sheet tire liner

    So I got another flat on the way to work today. I had to call the boss to tell him that I would be late.

    I picked up an 8 penny galvanized nail in the 5.05" wide tire. The nail got through NINE tire liners. 32 ounces of green slime was no help. Fail, fail. I was running 20psi and traveling about 28mph.

    I had just installed the nine tire liners and a new tire only 120 miles ago: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EMMr-jNEn7c&t=764s

    So I have had enough of this. I have had about 28 flat tires in 3 1/2 years. Most of those were back when I had no tire slime or tire liners, though.

    So here's what I did!

    I went down to the local steel supply with a box of new 16 penny nails and a sledgehammer. I tested 14-18 gauge mild steel and 5052 aluminum sheet in the parking lot of the local steel supply. And the winner was...16 gauge mild steel! Note that 14 gauge would have served, but with unnecessary weight.

    Trying as hard as I could with the sledgehammer, I was unable to drive a nail through the 16 gauge mild steel sheet. I bought a 10' long, 4" wide strip...for only $8!

    I was happy to note that it is quite flexible. It curves around nicely into a circle. And it isn't even very heavy.

    The circumference of my tire is 8.24', so I will cut it to that length and install it in such a manner as to (1) preserve the curvature of the tread portion, and (2) prevent the steel tire liner from popping my tube.

    Please let me know your ideas on preserving the curvature of the tread (closed cell foam?) as well as protecting the tube from the steel tire liner (traditional tire liners, of which I have many?)

    Right after going to the local steel supply, I went directly to the LBS for a pint of Stan's, a Stan's Presta injector ($11) and a new Bontrager tube. The Bontrager tubes are quite thick.

    I will post updates in this thread. I have a good feeling about this armor.
    Last edited by commuter ebikes; 10-29-2018, 08:53 PM.

    #2
    Update: in addition to the 8 penny nail, I found a 16 penny nail driven all the way into the tube when I was washing out the tube slime.

    Here are photos of 16 gauge mild steel hoop as well of a picture of the nine tire liners that failed me:

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      #3
      The 5052 aluminum sheet that they had at the local steel supply was really soft.

      The 16 gauge mild steel almost failed the test. However, I was unable to puncture the nail through the 16 gauge mild steel sheet. The nail bent 5 out of 5 times.

      I am depending on the 20psi tire pressure to keep the steel hoop pushed out in to a near perfect circle while the tire liner is in service. There is a concern that the hoop could bend or deform (e.g. if I hit a bump).

      This 16 gauge sheet is easily manipulated. I can bend it with my thumb and three fingers.

      I plan to have closed cell foam on the outside of the steel hoop in an attempt to maintain the intended shape of the tread on the tire. The "yoga mat" style foam is 1/2" thick. I may try a 3" wide strip on the outside of the steel hoop, and an additional 2" strip on top of that (which is to say, directly under the tire). Hopefully, this will all push against the tire and take the intended shape upon inflation.

      Since I obviously have no reservations about shoving many things in my tire, I will probably reinstall all of the tire liners in the photo in order to protect the tube from the steel hoop as well as punctures coming in from the rim or sidewall. I will be using 16 ounces of this in the tube https://www.notubes.com/stan-s-tire-sealant-pint
      Last edited by commuter ebikes; 10-29-2018, 08:55 PM.

      Comment


        #4
        I have already posted on the forum that flat tires are a terrible inconvenience for me because 50% of my flat tires make me late for work. I will keep at this until I can completely eliminate all flat tires.

        Hopefully I won't have to escalate to 14 gauge mild steel sheet and 32 ounces of Stan's.

        Comment


          #5
          Have you tried going Tubeless? Ive recently seen a video on Airliners...they look like pool noodles stuffed in the tires still use Stans with them and one of the test riders said they got a puncture during a race and couldnt even tell the tire was flat.. They tore a side wall. Ive been really tempted to try just using pool noodles see if they wont hold up. Dont like spending big bucks on foam.
          2018 Motobecane Boris Fat Bike BBSHD Build

          Comment


            #6
            Have I got the tire/wheel for you! At least twelve of them are free for the taking, just a little ways away:

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            Flat-proof, Big & Beefy - as you like your tires. Here they are underway:
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            Why reinvent the flatproof tire - it's been done (and no expense spared). As-is, these might be a tad bit treacherous in the rain - needs an outer rubber tread band.

            https://airandspace.si.edu/collectio...el-lunar-rover
            http://www.collectspace.com/news/news-120508a.html
            Last edited by ncmired; 10-30-2018, 04:04 PM.
            BBSHD/BBS02B builds: IGH 1 2 3 4 5 6

            Comment


            • Hard Tail
              Hard Tail commented
              Editing a comment
              Such innovation. Those NASA guys are true legends. I like listening to Mission Control digital radio where they play the audio tapes of the Apollo missions over background music.

            • ncmired
              ncmired commented
              Editing a comment
              Apollo and NASA - the "can do" past. Is the Mission Control digital radio on/from Soma FM?

            #7
            Hi CE. I thought you were joking. That’s one serious steel belted radial. If you get it to fit I reckon the ride might be a little spine jarring. I commute also and generally attempt various alternatives after each flat or blowout. I’m now resigned to simply ripping ouT the tube and replacing it with a spare I carry then squirt in two cans of air and back on my bike. The late call to the boss can often take longer than the flat fix.

            Comment


              #8
              Originally posted by pure_mahem View Post
              Have you tried going Tubeless? Ive recently seen a video on Airliners...they look like pool noodles stuffed in the tires still use Stans with them and one of the test riders said they got a puncture during a race and couldnt even tell the tire was flat.. They tore a side wall. Ive been really tempted to try just using pool noodles see if they wont hold up. Dont like spending big bucks on foam.
              I would be willing to try tubeless if I can't get a steel hoop to work. I have 12 rims like this, all with Cromotors built in. These rims have weight saving cutout holes, but I guess they could be covered with wide rim tape for a tubeless setup.

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              Last edited by commuter ebikes; 10-30-2018, 07:41 PM.

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                #9
                Here are some pictures of the lunar module wheel (built in the 1960s!) from the link:

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                  #10
                  Originally posted by commuter ebikes View Post

                  I would be willing to try tubeless if I can't get a steel hoop to work. I have 12 rims like this, all with Cromotors built in. These rims have weight saving cutout holes, but I guess they could be covered with wide rim tape.

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                  To me it is obvious the steel hoop will NOT work. Even if you can find an expert with a French wheel to give the hoop a perfect contour the first bump will bend the hoop. Just riding on it will bend it out of shape. Just go tubeless. I have a couple of fat tires that are working fine for me. I used this installation method. http://electricbike-blog.com/2015/06...nutes-of-work/

                  Comment


                  • zmarkjam
                    zmarkjam commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Yes, AZguy, a large needle is necessary to avoid clogging. The needles I got are 16ga, no clogging. Also I initially bought 2oz bottles of Stans which have the injector tip. They push into the insert end of the needle perfectly. Now I will just buy the large 32oz bottles of Stans and fill the 2oz bottles for both the needle method and the removed core method. BTW I'm lazy and have never rinsed the talc from the tube but have never had a problem.

                  • AZguy
                    AZguy commented
                    Editing a comment
                    16ga sounds about right compromise

                    I've got the 2oz syringe with the valve stem hose and that works great - makes filling a breeze but I like the idea of just jack it in there... that would be the awesome way to do it when the tire's already mounted. E.g. would make a top-off silly easy and while I'm not one that complains about that aspect of sealant there are plenty that do and this is one way to help address that complaint for sure - like giving it a tetanus... no strike that.... a flat tire shot =]

                    This should go in the recent discoveries.... thread

                    Now to find me the needle...
                    Last edited by AZguy; 11-24-2018, 01:14 PM.

                  • commuter ebikes
                    commuter ebikes commented
                    Editing a comment
                    If you ever find Presta tubes with a removable valve core, Stan's sells an injector for Presta valve stems: https://www.worldwidecyclery.com/pro...iABEgITffD_BwE

                    I bought one for about $10. It was easy to use and I didn't spill a drop. I am usually the first guy to make a mess.

                  #11
                  I appreciate that getting a flat tire in an airplane, a race, or a lunar module is worse than getting a flat tire while bicycle commuting.

                  I had hoped to try this tonight, but my work day was too long. I will have this put together and tested by Sunday night at the latest.

                  I still have high hopes in this plan:

                  (1) choosing any rim and tire that appeals to you,
                  (2) just under the tire, a rubber layer that protects the tire from being damaged by the steel hoop (I will be using the smoothed out old tire carcass for this, pictured in post #2),
                  (3) a steel hoop (as wide as possible) that cannot be penetrated by anything found on any road or trail,
                  (4) a layer of traditional tire liners that serves to protect the tube from both the steel hoop and any threats from the rim or sidewall,
                  (5) a tube at or near the max psi posted on the tire, and
                  (6) a sealant (e.g. Stan's) that does its job.

                  At a price of $8 for the 16 gauge mild steel hoop, this is a good value for impenetrable armor.

                  If somebody did get a flat with this setup, that hoop is gonna bend like a mofo. One would have to bend it back to the circular shape upon reinstallation. This problem could be avoided with a different design: 4"X4" steel squares assembled next to each other and taped together with Gorilla tape. This design has a weakness: a nail finding its way between the squares. Maybe one could put 4"X2" rectangles in a second layer preventing a nail from exploiting the crack. Obviously, the desire for weight reduction has been shelved here for the complete elimination of flat tires.

                  I will probably cover all the sharp edges of the steel hoop with the Mr. Tuffy tire liners and Gorilla tape. The Mr. Tuffy tire liners are pictured in post #2 in this thread--they have a green border.
                  Last edited by commuter ebikes; 10-30-2018, 07:58 PM.

                  Comment


                    #12
                    I had planned to put thinner strips of yoga foam on the outside of the hoop in an effort to preserve the roundness of the tread, but now I am just going to push the 4" wide steel hoop into the old, smoothed out tire carcass, which gets pushed into the tire. This will cause the tread to be quite flat.

                    I have done this with a motorcycle tire. Harley Davidson makes a large, 3/8" thick, Kevlar reinforced tire https://www.jpcycles.com/product/179...-26-front-tire that, after one removes the sidewalls https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3uzV4ue7NPI&t=5s makes for a tire liner that fits big, fat bike tires. Almost all other motorcycle tires are much smaller in diameter.

                    This idea certainly minimized flat tires (one flat tire approx every 1000 miles, but a nail can go through the motorcycle tread. I rode the bike with this experimental tire liner today. The tire has what appears to be a sheet metal screw stuck in it. The green tire slime stopped the air from leaking out and has allowed the tire to stay in service, but riding around with a screw driven all the way in the tire is worrisome and unreliable. The point here is that the motorcycle tire was penetrated by a screw:

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                    Last edited by commuter ebikes; 10-30-2018, 08:00 PM.

                    Comment


                      #13
                      Don't miss the fact that an opportunity exists here to buy 14 or 16 gauge strips of mild steel sheet for $8 and sell them for much more, marketed as an impenetrable tire liner (probably for ebikes only due to the weight). I won't be doing this because I already have too much on my plate.

                      The plan would be to cover all sharp edges of the strip (or "hoop") with a layer that is equivalent to three layers of Gorilla tape (come to think of it, I'll just do that) and just have the customers lay it in their tire between the tube and tire, and then run the tire at the maximum pressure posted on the tire. Doesn't get any easier than that.

                      Anybody has my permission to adopt this idea because flat tires really are a nuisance. Where I work, there are about 150 employees. I can't count the number of coworkers who have given up commuting by bike due to flat tires.
                      Last edited by commuter ebikes; 10-30-2018, 08:01 PM.

                      Comment


                        #14
                        Based on what calfee said, I am now moving in the direction of a series of 4"X4" squares sandwiched in 8.25' lengths of Gorilla tape, with 4"X2" squares secured in place (you guessed it, with Gorilla tape!) in order to protect the thin areas between the primary squares. The result would be an 8.25' long strip. I better get started on all of this cutting!

                        I wonder if I should put the 4"X2" squares on the outside or inside.

                        Comment


                          #15
                          They sell 2 part liquid polyurethane plastic. Some people use it to fill the voids in motor mounts for racing. My thinking is to get a smaller inner tube maybe 24" that will sit tight in the rim but not fill the tire completely. Then pour about a 1/2 thick layer of flexible urethane liquid between the tube and tire. You might need to make a hole in the tire to fill it. Tough, flexible, the inner tube is just to svae weight and money but I suppose you could put air in it also to help support the whole mess.

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