I'm trying to patch a hole in my bike tube. So as usual I pumped it up enough so that when I placed it in the bathtub full of water I could see where the hole is. But something odd happened and I can't get air to distribute evenly into tube. It's super inflated pregnant looking on one side and super skinny on the other. What caused this? Is it usable? How to fix it?
Tubes aren't designed to be stretched; they are simply there to hold the air while the rim and tire contain the pressure.
Consider what happens when you blow up a long thin balloon.
- First, the loose balloon inflates until it is uniformly full but with little pressure.
- Then, one part of the balloon (typically either one end or the other) will start to bulge.
- Then that bulge will get larger.
- Then the bulge will spread along the length of the balloon.
- Once the entire balloon is uniformly filled, it starts to uniformly inflate.
- Then it pops.
Exactly the same thing is happening with the tube.
- You inflate it until all looseness goes away.
- Then the pressure causes the weakest part of it to start to bulge.
But tubes aren't balloons, and they really aren't meant to be inflated to the point of bulging.