Friday, February 16, 2018

Friday News And Views

I'm Never Gonna Let You Down:

What if you never had to refresh your tubeless tire sealant? Sounds like a fairy tale? isn't, and it hasn't been for a long time. First of all, there are a LOT of available tire sealant products that will not dry up inside of your tubes or tubeless tires. Probably the most famous of these is Slime. Heck we were using Slime back in the 90's effectively to prevent flats in our mountain bike tubes. We never gave a thought to it drying up because.......well it never dried up. That's why.

But just this week Finish Line, the bicycle lube and cleaner company, announced a "new sealant" (To the bicycle industry)  that will "... last the entire usable life of the tire".

Sounds like a bold claim, but really, this part isn't new. Like I have illustrated above. The reason many sealants dry out is because the carrier fluid, the fluid that has the coagulants suspended in it, is generally ammonia. Latex is also commonly used and dries out as well. So, you get the very effective sealing properties, but the fluid and latex dries out in a few months, on average. Now there have been other sealants I have tried which do not dry out, but their sealing properties are.....not very good. That's why you generally do not find many cyclists bantering about this fantastic sealant which never dries out AND seals punctures with awesome speed and regularity. Those traits in a sealant- never drying out and effective sealing properties- seem to be mutually exclusive characteristics, unless Finish Line has figured out how to do it.

Of course, we have to keep in mind that "sealing" doesn't just mean plugging punctures, but sealing casings as well, because your tubeless tires are not likely full on UST, no sealant necessary tires. You'd know if you had a tubeless tire like that because it would weigh a LOT. Almost all tubeless tires for bicycles now require sealant to seal off the casings, otherwise you'd lose air quickly enough that you'd be pumping your tires up more than riding. So, will this fancy-pants Finish Line sealant do a good job of that? Don't know the answer to that question just yet.

Orange, bendy, secure......
  The Glorified Zip Tie: 

The ride was awesome and the crew you were riding with wants to head over to the local coffee spot for a drink and some vittles, but you are super nervous about your rig sitting out......there! All alone, nobody watching it with protective eyes, and you cannot see it from where you are sitting. One of your friends says something to you, but you didn't catch it because your mind is.......elsewhere. 

You know, you could bring along some sort of  cable lock, but they are sort of clunky. A "U" lock? Not on your life! There are those slinky steel cable locks that are small and packable, but they look.......anemic. Easy to cut? They look like they might be. Hmm...... What to do.

So, here is a possibility to consider for those sort of rides, or if you need to just run into a store or business quick. The Ottolock. It's pretty much best described as being a "glorified zip tie". It's light, flexible, and easily stowed into a jersey pocket, seat bag, frame bag, or looped around your frame, since it has a  rubberized covered, triple stainless steel layered band. Like I say, it is light, at 152 grams for the one I was sent. It is spendy, at $65.00, but that's more than worth it for the peace of mind and security. This is supposed to be better at securing your bike than a cable lock and maybe not quite as nice as a "U" lock.

Well, it seems like it makes sense and it seems well made. It should work great as a "medium security" type device for locking your bike to a rack, pole, etc. I will be using it here and figuring out if the thing is worth it or what.

Formatting in One, Two, Three.....
Trans Iowa v14 Cue Formatting Underway:

The goal before February is through is to have all the Trans Iowa v14 cues formatted for Spring Recon. That's when I take the cues out in the field and, usually, have someone drive according to them and check that they make sense. We wouldn't want you turning left when you should be turning right, for instance.

Anyway, the process got started this week with the cues to checkpoint # 1 getting done. I should have cues through checkpoint #2 done for sure this weekend. That's the biggest section, in terms of miles, and that will take slightly longer to fill into the cue sheet format than the last section. Although, I haven't actually counted the number of prompts, which could be more for the last sector. Hmm.....

At any rate, in other T.I.v14 news, the plan is set for the special gifts to the riders this year. I have done various things in the past, most notably t-shirts, but I will be handing out completely different items to the riders this year. If you show up, they will be somethings I think you will be stoked to have. We'll see. Thanks to Lederman Bail Bonds, one of our longstanding Trans Iowa sponsors, since it is because of their generosity that this is happening.

Okay, that's a wrap for this week. Thanks for checking in!


DT said...

I'm still a tire and wheel luddite - I've been sticking to tubes because they haven't let me down yet! But recently I purchased a used bike that was set up tubeless. It looks like they used orange seal (because the residue is orange), and there are several spots where the sealant was pooled up and allowed to dry in the tire. Is there any solvent that works particularly well at removing sealant residue from tires and rims? So far I've just been scraping/wiping/picking it away by hand.

Guitar Ted said...

@DT- To my knowledge there is no dedicated product for that task. You could try warm soapy water and a dish detergent like Dawn and use a scrub brush. Otherwise what you are doing works about as well as anything.

Rob E said...

Did we just get Rick Rolled on the GT Blog? I'd be interested to see what you think of that lock and look forward to seeing what you have to say on it.

Never gonna give you up
Never gonna let you down
Never gonna run around and desert you
Never gonna make you cry
Never gonna say goodbye
Never gonna tell a lie and hurt you

Guitar Ted said...

@Rob E- Ha ha! That's a thing I've done since the beginning. Song and band references. Most times they go unnoticed I think. At least no one has commented on those references for a long time until today. ;>)

Kevin Collings said...

I backed Ottolock on Kickstarter and have 4 of them now. Security is surprisingly good and they coil up small enough to tuck in a jersey pocket, or on their frame mount strap that's easy to tuck pretty much anywhere.

Rainier Wolfcastle said...

The Amazon reviews of Ottolocks are pretty funny. A lot of them don't work so it's people being thankful that they tried locking it without a bike involved.

As for the sealant, I'm super stoked about that. Orange seal leaks through the tan sidewalls of my tires and looks pretty ugly. Hopefully this fixes that or at least isn't as visible.