Preventing flats? Newbie issue.

Pearl

THIS CHANGES EVERYTHING
Team MTBNJ Halter's
I recently got into mountain biking after working at Ski Barn, which turns into a bike shop in the summer.

I ride Mercer County Park frequently, and it is known for its thorns and causing flats.

Is there any way that I can prevent getting flats?
Can anyone recommend a good tire or any ways to prevent flats?

I had to walk half my trip back because I didn't want to ride on the flat and bend the rim :(

Thanks in advance :)
 

anrothar

entirely thrilled
slime works well for thorns. tubeless systems like stans are supposed to be self sealing, but are a bit difficult to install properly, apparently, and i have no experience with them. slime is good though. i can vouch for it.
 

SpartaBard

Well-Known Member
Team MTBNJ Halter's
Carry a small pump, patches and maybe a tire lever. An extra tube doesn't hurt either.
 
I recently got into mountain biking after working at Ski Barn, which turns into a bike shop in the summer.

I ride Mercer County Park frequently, and it is known for its thorns and causing flats.

Is there any way that I can prevent getting flats?
Can anyone recommend a good tire or any ways to prevent flats?

I had to walk half my trip back because I didn't want to ride on the flat and bend the rim :(

Thanks in advance :)

my goodness, I have been on hundreds of rides at Mercer (lived 5 miles from the park for over 3 years) and never, ever had a flat there, thorns or otherwise. Look into tubes with thicker walls - heavier, yes, but sometimes pushing extra weight in the tires is worth not having the hassle of walking the bike back to the lot. Carry an air chuck, levers and a patch kit with you to fix tubes and tires if snakebites become a recurring issue.

Look into tires that are more XC oriented rather than Race oriented. I rode Continental Explorer Pros for many years without issue. They are great for a park like Mercer and thick enough to resist snakebites. Kenda Kharisma's are good also, thicker rubber and nice tread pattern, especially in summer when mud is less of an issue at parks like Mercer, Clayton, and Hartshorne. I have a set of Michelin Race tires also, very light but best for dry hardpack. I have not had a flat with them yet, but I have not used them often enough to run into conditions where flats or slippage may be problematic.

Currently I am running the WTB Weirwolf UST (also available non-tubeless) on my bike and they hold up to anything - mud, sand (with appropriate pressure), dry hard-pack trails, and rocks, and they climb like a dream. I have not even lost much air pressure over the past month.
 

Pearl

THIS CHANGES EVERYTHING
Team MTBNJ Halter's
Thanks for the detailed reply.

I've been running generic tubes for now, I guess that's my main problem. I ride at Six Mile too, and only have issues with flats at Mercer :(

I have heard good things about slime, I think that might be my next step.

After such a great ride, walking two miles back to the car was not fun :(
 

J-Dro

Well-Known Member
I agree with Heythorp. I used to work 5 minutes from Mercer and I can vouch that the place is thorn central. Pumping up the tires to about 40+ psi seems to keep them from penetrating through the tire rubber. I always used to give my tires a pump up before hitting Mercer.
 

Pearl

THIS CHANGES EVERYTHING
Team MTBNJ Halter's
I weigh 145 pounds, so I'll try to regulate my tire pressure too.
 

ryderX

Well-Known Member
First and foremost check you tire pressures before every ride. Invest in a good floor pump, and forget about "squeezing" the tire and guesstimating the tire pressure.
 

Pearl

THIS CHANGES EVERYTHING
Team MTBNJ Halter's
As far as tires, I am running the original Kenda Kinetics that came on my bike. Since I have been getting flats, I just keep taking generic tubes.

I feel the issue lays in my tire pressure and the fact that I ride at Mercer a lot :p
 

elzoller

El Guac-Oh
First and foremost check you tire pressures before every ride. Invest in a good floor pump, and forget about "squeezing" the tire and guesstimating the tire pressure.

haha, I always "guesstimate" :eek:
Then people ask me "how much pressure on your tires" and I go...."I dunno like this [and I squeeze the tire to show]" :eek:
 

Judge Smails

New Member
I actually prefer to ride at about 30-32psi, any more and I feel like I get bounced around too much. I know I'm risking pinch flats, but the important thing is knowing the trails and your bike to get a good feel.

I would also recommend checking the inside of your tire for any thorns or glass. you may have something stuck in your tire that is causing multiple flats. I know that's happened to me once or twice - you're in a hurry to change your tube and you don't check the inside of the tire only to get another flat in 5 minutes because you had a piece of thorn stuck in there.
 

Spylab

New Member
My little Burton backpack is one of my lifesavers out in the woods. I ALWAYS carry an extra tube, patch kit, tire levers, pump and multitool in case something does happen 6 miles out from any road.

That being said, I run around 35psi (45-50psi sounds like I'd be a rolling ping pong ball) and use Maxxis Freeride tubes and thick Maxxis High Roller tires to prevent puncture flats. The slime tubes feel so heavy, and I don't even know if Bell makes them with Presta valves.

As mentioned above, it's really a combination of equipment and tire pressure that play factors in flat tires. It definitely wouldn't hurt to have a little "tire first aid kit" on your back, though.
 

Pearl

THIS CHANGES EVERYTHING
Team MTBNJ Halter's
Thanks for all the help guys, I really appreciate it. I'm going to work on keeping my tire pressure around 35 psi, and triple check my tire before I go back out.

Great forum I joined :)
 

Pearl

THIS CHANGES EVERYTHING
Team MTBNJ Halter's
hahaha, that's funny stuff...

After I took the bike home and checked out my rear flat, I ended up having one in the front too! Looks like I still have a thorn or two in my tire. =\
 

anrothar

entirely thrilled
ya lets see how great it is when everyone starts spreading rumors how you slept w/ someone else from the board. :mad2:


it's not so much everyone as it's jake... he's just got some slightly 'different' obsessions. though, to his credit, you did call me sweetheart when asking for directions here. :D
 

ArmyOfNone

Well-Known Member
it's not so much everyone as it's jake... he's just got some slightly 'different' obsessions. though, to his credit, you did call me sweetheart when asking for directions here. :D

wweeellllll i guess you have a point....

steer clear of jake....:D :D :D
 

Pearl

THIS CHANGES EVERYTHING
Team MTBNJ Halter's
well im going to goto halters tomorrow and grab a couple tubes (if they're open) and see if i can find some more thorns. gonna start packing some tubes/tools too.
 

Pearl

THIS CHANGES EVERYTHING
Team MTBNJ Halter's
well i didnt go "tomorrow" but i went to halters today and picked up some slime tubes. big thumbs up to halters! hopefully all works well:)
 
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