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  1. #1
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    Hairline split in rear tire. Reparable or replacement required?

    Hi Guys- I was out for a ride today and had a rear flat. When changing the inner tube, I noted that there was a hairline split on the sidewall of the rear tire (pic below). The inner tube suffered a puncture at this location. I put on my spare inner tube, pumped up to about 70% of my normal 110 PSI, noted that it was not bulging through too badly, and safely finished my ride back home.

    A couple of questions:

    1) Is the side wall hairline split something I can somehow fix (no ideas here, except I read that I could fold a dollar bill on the inner wall to prevent the inner tube from protruding).

    2) If replacing is required, I'm certain I should replace both front and rear tires. Any recommendations for brands/models? Current tires are Continental Grand Prix 4000 25 mm and I've got about 4500-5K miles on them thus far. I'd likely like to go back to 23mm, if replacement is recommended.

    Cheers!

    Hairline split in rear tire. Reparable or replacement required?-qnkbjevh.jpg

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by skhan007 View Post
    Hi Guys- I was out for a ride today and had a rear flat. When changing the inner tube, I noted that there was a hairline split on the sidewall of the rear tire (pic below). The inner tube suffered a puncture at this location. I put on my spare inner tube, pumped up to about 70% of my normal 110 PSI, noted that it was not bulging through too badly, and safely finished my ride back home.

    A couple of questions:

    1) Is the side wall hairline split something I can somehow fix (no ideas here, except I read that I could fold a dollar bill on the inner wall to prevent the inner tube from protruding).

    2) If replacing is required, I'm certain I should replace both front and rear tires. Any recommendations for brands/models? Current tires are Continental Grand Prix 4000 25 mm and I've got about 4500-5K miles on them thus far. I'd likely like to go back to 23mm, if replacement is recommended.

    Cheers!

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Would also need to see the inside.

    However, it looks more than just a wee hairline crack.

    I would say bin it and stay away from Continental in the future. They are prone for failure like you have experienced. The only Continental that will last are Gatorskins everything else from Continental is Micky Mouse.

    You don't need to buy 2 new tyres if you stay with the same brand.

    I would only buy 2 new ones if you change brand for aesthetic reasons (although even in that case you can ride different brands front and rear).

  3. #3
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    No question about it: Replace it.

  4. #4
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    No way I would ride that - the dollar bill thing I would use to get me home and then change the tire. At 4500 miles, it's probably close to shot anyway. You could move the front to the rear and put a 23mm on the front if you want to save some cash right now.

    On tire choice, I love the conti 4000S, they work well for me and rarely flat + never had a sidewall cut like that (knock on wood)
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  5. #5
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    I'll ride it if there's no bulging. But that doesn't look good. Scrap it. At 100 psi, there's a huge force on the tire fabric, and that cut won't hold it for too many more miles.

    Continental tires have wear indicators, two small pits an inch apart on the tread. When they are worn away, the remaining tread is paper thin.

    Yes, put the current front on the rear, and buy a new front tire. Otherwise, the front won't wear out for years, accumulating cuts and cracks.

    I don't see any reason to go back to 23mm since your frame allows 25mm. Your 25mm GP4000 are just as fast as the 23mm, and can be run with about 10 psi less pressure. That's a lot better on rough roads.

    Lower the front pressure 10 to 15 psi below the rear, since there's less weight on the front. At 170 pounds, I use 85-90 psi front, and 100-105 psi rear. It's fast and comfortable.

    Quote Originally Posted by dracula View Post
    Would also need to see the inside.

    However, it looks more than just a wee hairline crack.

    I would say bin it and stay away from Continental in the future. They are prone for failure like you have experienced. The only Continental that will last are Gatorskins everything else from Continental is Micky Mouse.

    You don't need to buy 2 new tyres if you stay with the same brand.

    I would only buy 2 new ones if you change brand for aesthetic reasons (although even in that case you can ride different brands front and rear).
    I've kept using GP4000S tires for 6 or 7 years now. They have very good grip in the corners, a smooth ride on rough roads (due to the very flexible sidewalls) and long life, at least 3500 miles.

    In past years, I've had a few bad sidewall cuts in the same year. One, a sharp piece of metal, and later, a sharp edged pyramid shaped rock. But since then, nothing other than a thorn and a small piece of glass in the last 10,000 miles.

    It's kind of bad luck, getting a series of cut tires. I reduce my chance of a flat by staying mostly in the right tire track, where cars kick any debris off toward the side of the road. I rarely ride on shoulders (and even avoid dedicated bike lanes, since they don't get swept very often.)
    Last edited by rm -rf; 06-24-2017 at 11:36 AM.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by dracula View Post
    I would say bin it and stay away from Continental in the future. They are prone for failure like you have experienced. The only Continental that will last are Gatorskins everything else from Continental is Micky Mouse.
    disagree with both of your assessments.

    4KIIs...I've probably had at least ten sets of them. only one tire had a sidewall cut issue, but that was many years ago...in terms of puncture resistance and mileage, they're an excellent tire.

    Gatorskins...yeah, they last, but they have the ride quality of a frozen garden hose.
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    Quote Originally Posted by cendres View Post
    No question about it: Replace it.
    this.
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    I tend to be a bit frugal about these things, but no question I would replace it. I would not want to risk having that fail.

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    That tire would be safe to ride, with a boot, on a trainer.

    How many ply's are in that tire, he only cut through about 20 of one ply, there is still plenty of cords still working, on the other side of the tire! ~
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oxtox View Post
    disagree with both of your assessments.

    4KIIs...I've probably had at least ten sets of them. only one tire had a sidewall cut issue, but that was many years ago...in terms of puncture resistance and mileage, they're an excellent tire.

    Gatorskins...yeah, they last, but they have the ride quality of a frozen garden hose.
    Horses for courses.

    I have never seen a Continental 4000 II, however, I know for a fact the sidewalls are paper thin.*

    You could be living in wonderland with perfect roads and no rain and will never experience problems with that tyre. I am always a little bit carefull with anecodotes on the internet. It is the same when someone living in California or Spain says his road wheels or chains last forever. I have been living in parts of Scotland were this statement is simply false because of the rain. I am now in the south of the UK and weather is so much sunnier and better.

    *I once had a Continental GP Force 700x24 and the sidewalls were a joke and the tyre din't last long. Admittedly I had the same experience with Vittoria crap Micky Mouse Rubino Pro III (as far as I remember) tyres.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by rm -rf View Post
    It's kind of bad luck, getting a series of cut tires. I reduce my chance of a flat by staying mostly in the right tire track, where cars kick any debris off toward the side of the road. I rarely ride on shoulders (and even avoid dedicated bike lanes, since they don't get swept very often.)
    In part, yes, but after having three GP 4000s ruined in about 100 miles and having 0 sidewall cuts on Victoria Corsa and Pave in 10s of thousand miles I suspected that was more than coincidence and actually tested each side by side. And there was no question the GP 4000 side wall was extremely easy to cut. Admittedly my test wasn't the most scientific experiment ever conducted but they cut very easy compared to Vit. The Vit corsa is also a light race tires so I can at least say it was an apples to apples compare.

  12. #12
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    I greatly appreciate everyone's input. Clearly, the consensus is to toss the rear tire. The current wheel set is a set I built, but I have the stock wheel set in the basement. I could swap on those tires for now (the bike came stock with Continental Ultra Sport 23mm), as they are just doing nothing and may as well get some use (I think they have maybe 1000 miles on them). I suppose this is a no-cost solution for now. I can take my current 25mm front tire and put it to use on the bike trainer cycle.

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    +1 for replace. I've run 23 and 25 GP4000s tires and tbh haven't noticed much difference (and I have reduced the pressures on the 25s). I normally get about 5000 miles with the rear and it is usually replaced because it has squared off rather than hit the wear marks. My current bike was supplied with Conti Ultra Sport wired on tires and they were the tightest fitting tire I've encountered. I don't even have them on a spare set of wheels because there is no way I would want to face having to fix a flat with them out on the road.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dracula View Post
    I have never seen a Continental 4000 II, however, I know for a fact the sidewalls are paper thin.
    If you actually were "carefull with anecodotes on the internet" then you wouldn't be making your claims based on never having even seen a Conti GP 4000 II tire. They are VERY popular tires across the cycling world and people widely report good mileage, good ride, and good handling. What you "know for a fact" seems at odds with the facts.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by skhan007 View Post
    Hi Guys- I was out for a ride today and had a rear flat. When changing the inner tube, I noted that there was a hairline split on the sidewall of the rear tire (pic below).
    Definitely not a hairline split. Tire is ruined.


    I put on my spare inner tube, pumped up to about 70% of my normal 110 PSI,
    OMG, why are you pumping 25's up to 110PSI?? And you want to go to 23's? What will you pump those up to?
    You're losing all the benefits of the awesomeness of GP4K's at those pressures.



    Quote Originally Posted by dracula View Post
    I have never seen a Continental 4000 II, however, I know for a fact the sidewalls are paper thin.*
    Definitely obvious you've never seen one. So you should be a LOT careful with anecdotes on the internet.

    You could be living in wonderland with perfect roads and no rain and will never experience problems with that tyre. I am always a little bit carefull with anecodotes on the internet.
    I live in PA. Ride GP4K's year round. Potholes galore, s#ity roads, chipsel and I've never had a sidewall cut.
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  16. #16
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    Unsafe at any speed. Pitch that tire! A dollar bill may get you home, but it's still a time bomb. Any sidewall cut is a game ender.

    My suggestion would be to take your existing front tire and put it on the rear. Then put a new tire on the front. You always want your newest (safest) tire on the front.

    And as TLG said, why are you pumping 25s up to 110PSI. How much do you weigh?
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  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oxtox View Post
    disagree with both of your assessments.

    4KIIs...I've probably had at least ten sets of them. only one tire had a sidewall cut issue, but that was many years ago...in terms of puncture resistance and mileage, they're an excellent tire.

    Gatorskins...yeah, they last, but they have the ride quality of a frozen garden hose.
    + 1

    Definitely replace it. I love the GP4K's, great tires!!!,, Gatorskins,, NO-Hell No !! I had a similar split and blew the tube Saturday. I used the dollar bill trick to get home. I know that I'm not too careful about riding in the weeds/trash but how in the world do you get 4K on a set?? The best I ever get is 2K,, and yes, GP4Ks are still my preferred tire..
    Last edited by n2deep; 06-26-2017 at 07:17 AM.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by n2deep View Post
    Definitely replace it. I love the GP4K's, great tires!!!,, Gatorskins,, NO !! I had a similar split and blew the tube Saturday. I used the dollar bill trick to get home. I know that I'm not too careful about riding in the weeds/trash but how in the world do you get 4K on a set?? The best I ever get is 2K,, and yes, they are still my preferred tire..
    This can all depend on things like your weight and how much power you generate on the pedals - it all adds up. As the saying goes, YMMV.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lombard View Post
    Unsafe at any speed. Pitch that tire! A dollar bill may get you home, but it's still a time bomb. Any sidewall cut is a game ender.

    My suggestion would be to take your existing front tire and put it on the rear. Then put a new tire on the front. You always want your newest (safest) tire on the front.

    And as TLG said, why are you pumping 25s up to 110PSI. How much do you weigh?
    Quote Originally Posted by tlg View Post
    Definitely not a hairline split. Tire is ruined.


    OMG, why are you pumping 25's up to 110PSI?? And you want to go to 23's? What will you pump those up to?
    You're losing all the benefits of the awesomeness of GP4K's at those pressures.



    Definitely obvious you've never seen one. So you should be a LOT careful with anecdotes on the internet.

    I live in PA. Ride GP4K's year round. Potholes galore, s#ity roads, chipsel and I've never had a sidewall cut.
    Are you guys stating I'm having too much pressure at 110 psi? I don't know any better and I was told this was the pressure. I'm 6'1" and about 163 lbs. What pressure would you suggest for 25mm and what pressure for 23 mm? Guidance is most appreciated!

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    If he puts that kind of gash in his tires, he may need to run 110psi due to shiet on the road and pot holes.
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  21. #21
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    at 150 lbs, I run 23s at 100 r / 90 f.

    that's likely a bit too high, but it feels ok to me and allows 3-4 days of riding before needing to top up.
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  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by n2deep View Post
    ...how in the world do you get 4K on a set?? The best I ever get is 2K...
    our roads aren't too horrible here, mostly spin instead of mash, and am fairly light-weight at a buck-fifty...

    actually, 4K miles is the lower end of what I routinely get from the Conti 4K tires...several have gone 5-6K miles on the rear. a front tire went 9K once...just wanted to see how long it would last. even at that distance, it didn't look too bad...was more weather-checked than worn out treadwise...
    the 45th POTUS is inept, corrupt, and a pathological liar. and those may be his better qualities...

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    I knew, once I read the OP, that someone would jump on the poor guy for running at 110 psi.

    i run at 120 psi. Take that, all of you scoffers!!! When I had my bike with tubulars, I ran them at 150psi!!!

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by PJay View Post
    I knew, once I read the OP, that someone would jump on the poor guy for running at 110 psi.

    i run at 120 psi. Take that, all of you scoffers!!! When I had my bike with tubulars, I ran them at 150psi!!!
    That is certainly your privilege, but it's totally unnecessary. But hey, if you like riding a bucking bronco, who am I to judge?
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  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by skhan007 View Post
    Are you guys stating I'm having too much pressure at 110 psi? I don't know any better and I was told this was the pressure. I'm 6'1" and about 163 lbs. What pressure would you suggest for 25mm and what pressure for 23 mm? Guidance is most appreciated!
    At your weight, on 25mm tires, I would run around 75 front, 95 rear. 23mm tires, probably around 90 front, 110 rear. You hands and your arse will thank you! You only need to go higher if you get pinch flats at those pressures.

    Contrary to what many believe, higher pressure isn't always faster. There is a point where pressure get to a level that you lose forward speed due to suspension losses because of road imperfections. The only time higher pressures than this might be advantageous is if you are riding in a glass smooth velodrome.
    “Statistics are like bikinis. What they reveal is suggestive, but what they conceal is vital.” -- Aaron Levenstein

    "Beware of geeks bearing formulas."
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    "Education is what you get when you read the fine print. Experience is what you get when you don't. -- Pete Seeger



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