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Valve stem retainer nuts(10 posts)

Valve stem retainer nutsMrNoStyle
Mar 20, 2001 8:49 PM
Who's the nerd that started the fad of not using tube retainer nuts and presta valve caps? I have a Trek 5200 equipped with Rolf Vector Comps ( tubes have long stems ). When I asked why there were no nuts or caps on the presta valve stems, the salesman said that's the latest "style". Ok, so I went along with it --- stupid mistake. I went to go for a ride the other morning, and the front tire was flat. Upon inspection of the tube, there was a tear at the bottom of the valve. The only way I can think this happened is from the valve stem from being pushed in & out while attaching an air pump to the valve -- since there was no retaining nut.
So I've since gone back to using the retainer nuts -- who cares if they look dumb!
re: Valve stem retainer nutsDrD
Mar 21, 2001 2:57 AM
I agree- they are nice to have when filling up a tube - however, many of the long valve stem tubes aren't even threaded along the valve shaft (except for the end) so you couldn't use them even if you wanted to! However - I never had a tube tear at the valve stem... That has been my experience, anyway - my new wheelset (with cxp-33's) allows normal valve stems, so I will definitely use the nut when filling!

As for the top cap - I don't know what the deal is there - I always use them on mine (esp. on the mtb - keeps everything clean and functional!)
i think it's a weight thingHaiku d'état
Mar 21, 2001 5:21 AM
which doesn't make any difference to me. if i wanted to shave 10 grams (or whatever they weigh), i'd skip the sprinkle-covered doughnut at breakfast.

check these valve caps out (on my 45 lb bike)...
ok, that was a freaky link. try this one.Haiku d'état
Mar 21, 2001 5:24 AM
re: Valve stem retainer nutsROOKIE
Mar 21, 2001 6:03 AM
I actually had the opposite happen to me on my mountain bike. I thought the nut was supposed to be tightened up more than it was, so I tightened it before my ride and ended up with a flat caused by a tear where the stem meets the tube. A leson learned the hard way I guess.
a nut for the nutts ...Breck
Mar 21, 2001 7:48 AM
Some anecdotal observations:
Continental road tubes use threaded Presta valve stems, Torelli road tubes don't. So, if your tube has the threaded valve filler stem, the stem nut can be used for keeping the stem perpendicular to the rim while filling, or not; after filling the stem nut can be removed or not; the stem cap when supplied can be used or not. Do you like the looks of the stem nut and stem cap on your wheels or not ?

Same bgcc logic goes for every other supplied store bought item for the bike that one "needs" or does not "need" either for fear it isn't the current style (the least worry) or that some safety will be compromised if not used (the most and should be only worry).

All esoteric arguments aside, it's as simple as that. If you do enuff riding you will see all sorts of problems with the bike tubes and tires that can not truly be ascribed to your or some one else's anecdotal "evidence" of perceived relevance. That is, with out enuff statistical evidence or sampling, who the frigg knows what's going on here, other than mebee the simple marketing minds of bike gear pushers always seem to have a predisposition to give you options regards the "cult", superstition, current fad, safety(?), or the what ever of it and not to miss out on a sale.

Always -- as in it's a good idea -- air down the tube a little before re-filling to the desired max pressure. The airing down accomplishes two things with Presta valve tubes, threadless or not. 1) It clears dirt and debris, etc., out of the valve stem whether you use the cap or not. 2) Aired down Presta tubes are generally easier to get the pump attachment device to purchase onto the stem, especially smooth bore stems; Silca Pumps heads being a prime example when trying to add 10 psi or so to the 110-150 psi road tube.

A personal observation is that Torelli "get home" mini pumps are sometimes hard to get firmly attached to Torelli smooth barreled stems so that no air leaks by, and therefore no airing up the tube alone in the desert or else where, miles and miles from nowhere. A little spittle on the smooth bore stems helps a lot for sealing some smooth stems with some pump heads; this goes for smooth bore extensions on deep dish rims too.

Ive never used the nut nor cap for the last 15 years w/ noJimbob
Mar 21, 2001 8:25 AM
problems whatsoever. It is a little nicer to pump up a tire with the nut. But from my years at working at a shop as a kid we just never used them. Theyre not needed and just take more fiddling time to change a flat or change pressure.
same hereDog
Mar 21, 2001 10:09 AM
I never use the nuts, but keep the caps on my spares so that the valve doesn't poke the rubber in storage.

I know other guys who use them religiously, and look at me like I'm some sort of wildman for not using them. When I ask them, "what good do they do?", they have no answer.

Mountain bike tubes are different. Due to the greater volume inside the tire, you can accidentally push the valve all the way inside the rim without the nut. I used to use them there (no mtb anymore). But even then, no cap.

re: Valve stem retainer nutsamflyer
Mar 21, 2001 10:06 AM
Actually, the truth of the matter is that the nuts function as harmonic balancers, to remove unwanted vibrations that occurs when uninformed riders do not remove the small rubber nibs from the sides of their tires. The nuts were only included with presta tubes with the advent of the clincher tire (ergo, the rubber nibs) to help out the naive consumer.

Really. Ask Doug S. if you don't believe me.

re: Valve stem retainer nutsfuzzybunnies
Mar 21, 2001 8:18 PM
Probably the biggest reason the bike leaves the shop without a cap and locknut is that they're simply forgotten. I try to remember the little cap but the nut usually gets forgotten since the customers like to talk while you're changing the tire. Personally none of my bike have them and I always loose them, just not significant enough to remember. TTFN