So I've owned my Cross Bike for about 10 days and I have flatted 5 times, I'm starting to get really pissed off. I have had my TT bike for 2 1/2 years and I've flatted three years ( twice in one race), so really only twice. Today was supposed to be a great day, I was meeting a bunch of ECV guys to practice cross with this morning. I have the Gloucester Cross race on October 2nd and I need all the practice I can get with bike handling skills and riding the terrain. The other day my friend Bob and I were riding and I flatted on a single track at Bradley Palmer, he helped me change my tube and something just wasn't right with the wheel when we were finished, it was wobbling a bit , didn't feel right, so I went to the bike store where I bought the bike and they told me that the rim tape the manufacturer put on the wheel was bad and they needed to change it. The rim tape helps keep the tire in and secure and that wasn't happening right now. So after they helped me with that I rode home and everything was great. Today I got up early, pumped the tires to 45psi like they said and off I went. 2 1/2 miles into my ride I flatted, I was on the road not trail, why would I flat, I didn't hit anything, no glass, WTF.......
I pulled over and started changing my tube. Man new tires are tough and this tire was really tough to get off. I felt my fingers and hands burning. After getting the tire off finally I realized that I probably wasn't going to make the rendezvous with the guys so I just took my time. I felt inside the tire, no glass, no holes.... These cross tires are thick, not like my road tires, so I was a bit confused why I might of popped my tube. It took a ton of time to put my new tube in and then put the tire on, it was so hard to get the tire in. Finally after ( well I'm not going to tell you how long it took but it certainly wasn't the fastest I ever changed a tire) within 2 minutes I saw my tire deflated. WTF.... I looked to see any pinches, no tube was sticking out, what the hell.
I had only a little Co2 left and decided to walk home. A few bikers stopped but the people who stopped to see if I needed help didn't have any Co2 or bike pumps, didn't know how to change flats, it was amazing. I mean, thanks for stopping people but really, if you can't change a flat or care for your bike why are you out there? Thanks though.
Anyway, I got home after 25 minutes of walking my bike home and decided to go at it again. I grabbed another tube and started the process all over again. Again, it took forever to get the tire off and then I inspected the tube, I really couldn't find the hold, it wasn't pinched by the valve, so weird. I checked the tire, it seemed fine, what was I doing wrong? Am I an idiot. I was so determined at this point. I put in another tube, it took another 15 minutes to get the tire back on and then I pumped up the tire, everything looked good, I was so psyched. Then, 4 minutes passed and I noticed my bike was flat again, AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH. No more, no more, no more. I'm done, no bike stores are open on sunday, my husband couldn't change a tire if you paid him or even know how to get the wheel off, I will just need to deal with it tomorrow, but I'm pissed.
Let me tell you why I'm pissed:
1. I should know how to change my tire quicker.
2. I should have more skills and abilities to figure out whats wrong with my wheel/tire/brakes/etc... when something goes wrong. I felt very confident changing my tire but fell very short today and have wasted a lot of tubes and my time.
3. You should always know how to use every piece of equipment you own before heading out onto the road, no questions asked. I felt like a fool walking my bike home and an idiot. I did my best but I wasn't able to troubleshoot the problem.
I vow to get so proficient in caring for my bike in the future that I will rarely need to use the bike mechanics in the future.