I had a puncture on my big ride yesterday that hurt my tire and even the carcass quite visually. In the end and due to lack of options to source a fitting tire on a Sunday in more remote Alpine regions, I put in a new tube and rode on, made it home for the final 120 kilometers of the ride.

Someting cut my tire and I was actually lucky that it only caused a slow leak, I could already visually see that the front was bulging out a bit, some "sucking" noise appeared and when I stopped in the next town, I noticed that it lost quite some pressure, enough to roll but not enough to keep on going for any longer...

The ride feel with the new tube in was OK, I couldn't really feel the bulge around the cut, so I made a call that it is alright to finish the ride, due to that and because the tube wasn't sticking out, which would have been a big no-no for me. I didn't notice any change in feel and looks for the rest of the ride.

Needless to say that I'm not planning any serious rides on the front and have already ordered a set of replacement tires, I don't want to take the risk of objects sticking through the cut or things getting structurally worse if I ride on the weakened carcass.

Do you think I was stressing my luck or was it still somewhat reasonable to finish the ride?

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1 Answer 1


You got home okay and the tube did not blow out. So your choice worked fine this time.

The other option is that it blew out as a sudden puncture immediately loosing all pressure and dropping your rim on the road surface at your current speed. If that happened on the flat and straight you'd probably stop safely.

Had it blown on a descent, or while doing any kind of turn then you're probably going to hit the deck as the wheel suddenly wipes out from under you due to immediate loss of traction.

I think you made a good call to swap tube.

If it were me I would also have "booted" the area by inserting something thin but resistant, to help prevent the tube from herniating through the hole.

Common items are a small-denomination note of your currency, or a empty gel wrapper (though make sure its as clean as you can get it, guess how I learned that!)

I generally have a plastic clipseal coin-bag used by banks to hold $10 in change, these work quite well wrapped around the tube in that one spot.

Last resort if you have nothing else is any roadside trash that is a flexible plastic. Segments cut from aluminium cans are not suitable. Single-ply cardboard can help but won't survive any water.

There are proper commercial boot products one can buy and carry for this purpose, though I'd rather use the plastic bag I happen to carry to protect each spare tube.

I would suspect that tyre is dead now. However it appears to have a lot of tread on it still, so it may be worth attempting a repair then evaluate.

  • Clean the inside of those flaps, and try to abraide them, like you would a tube before patching.
  • Apply vulc. fluid, and flex the tyre to keep the gash OPEN for about five minutes.
  • After that, flatten the tyre out to stick the flaps down. Clamp it there for a while, and then roller it hard to try and compress it all together. Let it rest overnight in the clamp.
  • Next day, find one of those horrid thick tube repair patches that everyone seems to have but not use. Patch the inside of the tyre, like you would a tube. If the vulcanising fluid doesn't seem to work on the inside of the tyre, you can use superglue instead.
    The point of this is to provide a permanent boot across the slash.

Once that's all done, try refitting your tube and tyre to the rim and reinflate. With the tube at normal riding pressure, examine the repair and make a decision.

If the repair looks okay, ride it. If it doesn't, you're out some time, a patch and some glue but you could save yourself a new tyre.

If you're half-way, then a repaired tyre like this can live out its life on a trainer where a blowout is not going to strand you miles from home.

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    I'm thinking about carrying tire patches in addition to spare tubes and CO2. Either it goes on the tube to patch it up or fill eventual cuts in the tire itself. I've also heard of superglue but a patch serves two purposes, so it beats glue in terms of versabilty.
    – DoNuT
    Sep 18, 2023 at 9:42
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    The more I think it, my biggest luck was that I didn't suffer an instant failure when I punctured. I really can't well when and how it happened, so it might have been in the flat or a descent, already got paranoia about the front tire starting to look odd, so I would estimate I rode it for 5-10k between the incident and the actual stop... no doubt I'd throw out the tube as a first measure, I just brought it home and checked for the hole at home.
    – DoNuT
    Sep 18, 2023 at 9:45
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    @DoNuT You can also cut an old tire into tire boots - which will usually require a substantial cutting tool of some kind as tires are not that easy to cut. I usually aim for 15 cm or so sections. After cutting the tire into sections, cut the bead off so it can be inserted into a tire and mounted. Put two or three of them in your repair kit. You now has a source of quite a few boots... Sep 18, 2023 at 9:49
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    @DoNuT That tube looks eminently patchable. I'd slap a thin patch on and reuse it with no issues. Its the tyre I'm not sure on. I carry anything from 2 to 4 tubes, depending on the length and remoteness of my ride and who else might be with me vs going alone. I also carry a small light booklet of "sticker" patches which are last resort, and they also can help others with different wheel sizes.
    – Criggie
    Sep 18, 2023 at 9:49
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    Ad the tire: The rear looks worse in terms of wear and since I want to go for GP5000s for next season, anyway, I'll just do the swap and hardly ride on it this year. My trainer is direct-mount, so no hard feelings about fitting it right now. I have enough of those tubes lying around, so I'm not taking any chances, here^^
    – DoNuT
    Sep 18, 2023 at 9:51

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