On my bike adventure on Sunday I encountered the first flat tire I’ve gotten when biking alone. The only other time I’ve gotten a flat was with my Beer and Bikes group, and with a half dozen bikers surrounding you, everyone pitched in and the tire was changed super fast. On Sunday I was on my own when I came up to the 42nd Ave bridge and realized something was up.
I grabbed a seat on a nearby bus bench and started the process of changing the flat. First though, I made sure I found the culprit. Turns out I ran over a small piece of twisted metal, and it had securely embedded itself into my front tire. It’s comforting to know that you’ve found the cause, as it makes it less likely to puncture the new tube.
I got the new tube in, remembering a few tips my friend Abe shared with me, such as blowing up the tube just a little bit before putting it in place. It helps ensure you don’t kink the tube, causing a whole new set of problems. I got the tire back around and started to pump it up with my hand pump. I realized that this was going to take forever, until I spotted a gas station about a block away. I went over and happily paid the $0.75 to get the tire inflated super fast. In the future I think I’m going to carry some CO2 canisters as they can inflate a tire fast when you’re nowhere near compressed air.
I guess I count myself lucky that I get so few flats. Many in our group have had multiple ones, even on the same ride. At least now I know that I have zero issues with getting it changed on my own. Not quite the additional adventure I wanted to have, but not the worst that could have happened.