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Anyone out there wipe their tires down while riding?(14 posts)

Anyone out there wipe their tires down while riding?boy nigel
Aug 3, 2001 9:50 PM
I do, and have avoided many a flat this way. If I've ridden close to some conspicuous glass or other such debris, I reach down with my right hand (gloved, of course) and quickly touch the area between my thumb and index finger to the tire, clearing off any stuck-on or starting-to-stick-in particles.

The problem is two-fold: 1) Naturally, my right glove eventually wears a hole through in this spot (Duh!); and 2) My right glove gets nasty and grimy. The latter is solved simply by cleaning, of course, but the first one seems inevitable over time (Friction + time = hole).

Does anyone else have a better way, method, or material to use in order to get the same result (debris-free tires)? Thanks. The best, most helpful answer wins a prize! ;)

Any good, serious ideas are much appreciated.

Cheers and puncture-resistant rides,
Nigel
Me tootirider
Aug 3, 2001 10:19 PM
I do the same thing instinctually... It goes back to my old sew-up days and I'd like to think it still has some merit. Amazingly I rarely see others do it out on rides.
re: Anyone out there wipe their tires down while riding?Hank
Aug 3, 2001 10:39 PM
I do it with bare hands (unless it's cold and then I have my full finger gloves on). I've heard some horror stories, but I've not has so much as a scratch in 18 years of doing it.
re: Anyone out there wipe their tires down while riding?DINOSAUR
Aug 3, 2001 11:09 PM
I pay more attention to wiping down my tires during the winter when the roads are sometimes wet due to previous rain. My tires seem to pick up little pieces of glass that stick to the rubber compound due to the dampness. During the winter I ride with long fingered gloves and it makes it a little easier. I used to make a habit of wiping down my tires every 20 minutes or so, using a folded up piece of heavy duty paper "Shop Towel". I stopped doing it during the summer, as it didn't seem to make a difference. It appeared that I might be forcing stuff into the bead, instead of gently knocking it off. Sometimes I'll stop at the halfway point of my ride and wipe my tires off, more than likely when I have new tires. I dunno, flats are a mystery to me, they go it spurts. There seems to be no rhyme or reason, maybe just bad or dumb luck.
re: Anyone out there wipe their tires down while riding?Dan B
Aug 4, 2001 7:02 AM
Not as much as I should...MeDotOrg
Aug 4, 2001 8:08 AM
...but it's something I started doing many years ago. Not because anyone told me, it just seemed logical.
Sure doSkip
Aug 4, 2001 10:02 AM
But, I start with a light touch for the first several revolutions to wipe/brush any debris off, without the risk of driving the glass, metal, etc. deeper. Then gradually increase the pressure. As Eric Clapton would say, "A Slow Hand" - Ha!.
Remember the old wire tire scrapers? Did they really work?Steeve
Aug 4, 2001 10:51 AM
I'm not sure if they were called scrapers or wipers, but they made of wire and bolted to the fork or frame opposite the calipers. I haven't seen them since the early 80's.

Point to ponder: At 20 mph, your 700c tire is revolving at about 4.3 revs per second. That means if it takes about 3 seconds after you run over something until you actually wipe it, the tire has run over it about 13 times. 25mph = 16 times.
re: All the time !Steve A
Aug 4, 2001 3:52 PM
Any time you even think you ran over something wipe the tires, and quick, they say you only have (4) revolutions? I'm not sure who figures out these things "but"! The mor eyou ride into the shoulder "deeper" the mor echance you will get a flat, also right after rain to.
re: Anyone out there wipe their tires down while riding?Whatever
Aug 4, 2001 5:55 PM
I've done it for years...I use the "crotch of the hand" technique, not the "finger" technique. I start in the rear, figuring that I have more weight on that tire and any junk will puncture there first.

I also have no idea if it really does anything...as noted, your tire has spun many revolutions by the time you get around to it. I suspect that there is a placebo effect going on here...if you are aware of what is on the road enough to wipe down your tires when you see junk, you are probably riding around stuff others plow on through.

I have also heard that water acts as a lubricant, making it easy for junk to cut through tires. No first-hand experience here since I try to avoid riding when it is wet, or I ride the MTB.
re: Anyone out there wipe their tires down while riding?cycleguy
Aug 4, 2001 7:52 PM
Anyone remember the tire savers that where attached to the brake bolts. A simple product that was suppose to wipe tubular tires. Seems like mine were so tight on my tires that they were very noticable, as in drag!! Or they never really cleaned my tires. Either way I long ago lost them. Thanks for spin skins and mr. tuffy!! One flat every 5000 miles!! No flats rule!!
Solutions!Lazy
Aug 4, 2001 8:08 PM
Become ambidextrous.(sp?) Or, use the front/right rear/left method.
That way you'll wear out your gloves equally.

Or, if you're not style conscious (which we all know isn't the case since your post about guys wearing windbreakers in Central Park LOL ;-) ) apply some duct tape to the appropriate area of your glove.

Best one yet: quit running over stuff.

Good luck! :-D
Greetings, Lazy.boy nigel
Aug 5, 2001 9:07 AM
Good hearing from you. Funny how you remembered my big What-makes-people-dress-for-winter-when-it's-88-degrees-and-humid-as-hell-out? post a while back. :) I still see that stuff in the city, and I'll never cease my pondering on this one. And yes, I do care about how I look (more about how I ride, but it's always to feel that you look good, eh?).

I've thought about the double-gloved method, actually. I'll try it out. Sound suggestion; I'd expect nothing less from you, man. Thanks.

Being debris-conscious when I ride is the best I can do. Fortunately, I almost never flat at all. I like to think that it's a combo of my road awareness and my on-the-go tire cleaning.

Be well,
Nige
I used to, but not since my hand got caught! (nm)1-armed bandit
Aug 5, 2001 7:10 AM