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co2 or pump?(12 posts)

co2 or pump?hayduke
Jan 21, 2002 1:46 PM
i have a new trek 5200 and have found that there is no place to mount a full size frame pump--i have been using one of those mini pumps that attaches to the water bottle mount on the seat tube--i am not crazy about these mini pumps and am not happy at all with the mounting location--

my question: is co2 a good alternative to carrying a pump?
as i browse the pic section i do not see a lot of mounting brackets on these bikes--are they relying on co2 and not carrying pumps? also: what kind of mechanisms are best to deliver the co2? and how many and what size cylinders to carry?

any help will be appreciated
re: co2 or pump?Pump
Jan 21, 2002 1:51 PM
Pump. You can use the same pump over and over again. This makes them more environmentally sound and, God forbid you have more than one flat on a single ride, they are way more reliable.

Incidentally, how do you like the Trek 5200? What did you ride before?
re: co2 or pump?Mootsie
Jan 21, 2002 1:59 PM
I had the same problem. I switched to the co2 and have never looked back. I have a very small seat bag and I can still fit two co2's, a tube, patches and tire irons in w/o a problem. Get one of the mechanisms that allows you to control the flow of air. That way you can inflate the tube slightly as you put it on and use the rest of the co2 to bring the tire up to pressure. It is very easy. You'll never want to use a hand pump again.
re: co2 or pump?Lone Gunman
Jan 21, 2002 2:04 PM
I carry both, a blackburn airstik and a trigger type co2 in the 12.5 gram cartridge. Upon changing a flat, I pump up the reinstalled tube with the pump until the tire is seated (20-30 lbs.) and finish the job with a co2. 16 gram cartridges are expensive, 12.5's can be had very cheap @ Walmart/Kmart. Nashbar sells a strap type pump holder that you can mount anywhere possible on your frame, Lance mounts his (once upon a time before he had a support car following him around) inside of the non drive side rear triangle. The only problem with the co2 is that the air must be replaced as the co2 will leak out in time (day or so) and the tire will go flat. Lastly, I carry 3 co2 spare cartridges.
Hayduke lives!mixinbeatz
Jan 21, 2002 2:19 PM
Get a good pump for 99% of use, I use a waterbottle cage mount blackburn and it does fine up to at least 110. And get a get a big co2 for racing. But if you are the real "hayduke," get a co2 that uses the bb gun cartridges and trow them off your bike into the ditch when you are done. That is how "Hayduke," disposes of his beer cans while he is driving his jeep after all!!!
Jan 21, 2002 2:46 PM
Yes, but why mess around? Unless you are a weight weenie that never rides too far from a phone, slap a mini pump on the frame. Carry CO2 in your bag. Maybe you'll never need the pump, but wouldn't it suck if you did and you didn't have it?

Get the most basic low-tech CO2 valve. The one I have is a simple right-angle threaded elbow design. The fancy ones are worthless and far too complicated for their own good. A 16-grain cartridge will supposedly give you 120 psi or more. 12-grain will only give 100. Most people I know carry 12s because they are cheaper, and there is no way you can overinflate your tire.
Pump, for enviro and cost and the pfffft factorcory
Jan 21, 2002 2:48 PM
I tried CO2 for awhile, but I was always afraid it would pffft on me (I live where there are lots of thorns and the roads aren't swept frequently; it's common to have a flat every 30-50 miles). Add the cost of buying the cartridges and the environmental burden of throwing them away...I have a Zefal hpX pump that works like new after 15 years, and that's what I'm using now.
Jan 21, 2002 3:30 PM
I like the Innovation inflater with threaded 16oz cartridges, advertised as 130#. I quit carrying a pump for the same reason, when I bought my Trek 5500 back in 1998, no pump pegs. This is the small 90 degree type that takes up very little space. I always carry 2 or 3 cartridges, a new tube, and a patch kit. I don't expect I'll ever go back to a pump but I don't have many flats, average one per year, ~2000 miles. Last year I blistered my thumb with the inflater, OUCH! You've got to keep your bare skin off of the metal parts while inflating.
Thirds on both....DINOSAUR
Jan 21, 2002 3:41 PM
I carry a double action Avenir mini pump and two cartridges of 12g co2. I pump 40lbs using my mini and finish it off with co2, which brings it up to 120psi (for a 700x23).

I seldom have more than two flats on one ride, so if worse comes to worse I have the mini to rely on. When I have more experience with co2, I'll probably drop the mini and go with 16g co2...I'm not completely sold on the co2 yet...

The 12g co2's are inexpensive, you can purchase them in bulk for about $.50 a cartridge at places such as KMart (the 12g are the size they use for pellet guns). The 16g cost about $2.00 a piece. You can also find the 12g at sporting goods store in packs of five for around $5.50 (my KMart never has anything in stock).

Or you can carry a full length Blackburn FP-1 frame pump and rig a pump peg using a plastic zip lock tie (is that what you call those things?). However you will have to cinch down the pump (I used velcro straps) or it will rattle like crazy. I could only get up to about 80-90 psi with a Blackburn though, but they are rated up to 120psi.

If you decide to go with co2, I recommend you experiment in your garage so you know how it works. I forgot and went through 2 cannisters before I could get any air into my tire.
No pump hereTroyboy
Jan 21, 2002 5:42 PM
Cartridges only. Two carts and a tiny tiny fitting. One tube and a patch kit. Why carry the pump? I don't have a need for one at all. One second inflations.
Get both in oneJG
Jan 21, 2002 9:23 PM
I am surprised that no one has mentioned a combination mini pump/CO2 inflator. I have an Innovations Pump that does both: fits a 12g CO2 cartridge inside the casing (no chance of touching the bare metal when inflating) and also allows for manual inflation. It even has a trigger to control the CO2 release.

While I haven't needed to use it on the road, I have tried it out on the front porch, and I can use the manual pump to properly seat the tube, partially inflate to about 40-50 psi, then finish it off with the CO2 cartridge.

Seems like the best of both worlds to me! I got mine at Nashbar.

If you go with CO2...Tig
Jan 22, 2002 8:42 AM
Be sure to deflate the tube most of the way when you get home and replace the CO2 with air from a floor pump. The CO2 in the tube won't hold pressure for very long on your next day's ride. Don't touch the metal parts of the cartridge while inflating or right afterward unless you like freezing your finger's skin.

Regardless of using CO2 or a pump, always carry more than 1 spare tube (I carry 3). A glueless patch kit is small and good to carry as well. Keep something to use as a "boot" in case the tire damage is large. A dollar bill, an old Power Bar wrapper, or the strong material a FedEx envelope is made of will all make a descent boot to line the damaged section of the tire with, which keeps the tube protected and prevents it from bulging out.