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how do you clean gum/natural tire sidewalls?

Posted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 8:12 am
by owl
Hello

Just fitted some vittoria sc's they look great and have a bit more volume than veloflex. How do people clean the gum coloured side walls though as I can see them getting v. dirty :cry:


thanks

owl

Re: how do you clean gum/natural tire sidewalls?

Posted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 10:27 am
by jipperd
I cleaned my FMB tires with benzine / thinner.

Re: how do you clean gum/natural tire sidewalls?

Posted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 10:27 am
by Weenie

how do you clean gum/natural tire sidewalls?

Posted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 1:25 pm
by lcoolb
As long as i don't ride my Veloflex in the rain, baby wipes do the job (as for cleaning almost anything on your bike!)

Re: how do you clean gum/natural tire sidewalls?

Posted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 5:10 pm
by fdegrove
Hi,

jipperd wrote:I cleaned my FMB tires with benzine / thinner.


The sidewalls? :shock:

Ciao, ;)

Re: how do you clean gum/natural tire sidewalls?

Posted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 5:14 pm
by mclaren
Powdered cleaners such as Comet or Ajax and a scrub brush. Used to do the same when cars had white side walls this did the trick

Re: how do you clean gum/natural tire sidewalls?

Posted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 7:22 pm
by gospastic
Mineral spirits will take off the dirt really easily.

Re: how do you clean gum/natural tire sidewalls?

Posted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 8:31 pm
by jipperd
fdegrove wrote:The sidewalls? :shock:


Yes the sidewalls, with benzene, no problems whatsoever.

Re: how do you clean gum/natural tire sidewalls?

Posted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 8:37 pm
by CamW
jipperd wrote:
fdegrove wrote:The sidewalls? :shock:


Yes the sidewalls, with benzene, no problems whatsoever.


I really don't mean for this to come out wrong but you are aware of the health effects of benzene right? :unbelievable:

Re: how do you clean gum/natural tire sidewalls?

Posted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 8:50 pm
by HammerTime2
Benzene? I love the smell of leukemia in the morning. It smells like ... idiocy.

Re: how do you clean gum/natural tire sidewalls?

Posted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 8:54 pm
by jipperd
I expect that there is a problem with the translation. Benzene is less harmful than thinner, but indeed it is a "harmful" product. Therefore, only outside use.

Re: how do you clean gum/natural tire sidewalls?

Posted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 9:02 pm
by JKolmo
lcoolb wrote:As long as i don't ride my Veloflex in the rain, baby wipes do the job (as for cleaning almost anything on your bike!)


That's what I do too.

Re: how do you clean gum/natural tire sidewalls?

Posted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 11:12 pm
by fdegrove
Hi,

jipperd wrote:I expect that there is a problem with the translation. Benzene is less harmful than thinner, but indeed it is a "harmful" product. Therefore, only outside use.


Sorry to insist but why use "heavy duty" mineral based degreasers on the sidewalls of a tubular?
Most of the tan walled tubulars I'm familiar with are coated in latex to prevent them from soaking up water. Using mineral spirits on such a coating will slowly but surely destroy it allowing dirt to actually penetrate the sidewall making it irreversibly "dirty" looking.

Benzene (benzeen in Dutch) is not benzine (gasoil, benzina) and is mostly used in pharmaceuticals, they are chemically related though and indeed, both are toxic. I'm actually rather surprised to see it's commercially available.

So far I've always cleaned the sidewalls with a mild detergent mixed in water and a spunge. Works fine for me.

The achilles heel of tanned sidewalls is the rear wheel where you need to take care no soiled cleaning fluid from the cogset is dripping onto the tyre's sidewall where it will penetrate the casing as I described above.

I take it the FMB tubs do not come with a protective coating?

Either way, I'd still advise against such strong degreasers as they'll likely enter the layer of rim cement where it will weaken the bond eventually.

Ciao, ;)

Re: how do you clean gum/natural tire sidewalls?

Posted: Sun Apr 08, 2012 1:19 am
by HammerTime2
Not only do you threaten the tire (base tape) rim bond, but also the tire to base tape bond. You really don't want to roll the tire off the base tape. Fortunately I've never rolled a tire in any manner, but I've seen a few instances of tires rolling off base tape.

Re: how do you clean gum/natural tire sidewalls?

Posted: Sun Apr 08, 2012 2:08 am
by fdegrove
Hi,

Fortunately I've never rolled a tire in any manner, but I've seen a few instances of tires rolling off base tape.


Especially the cheaper examples. Even more so as they get a little older.
Which is one reason I always insist that people should remove a tubular by pulling it upwards with respect to the rim bed instead of pushing it down sideways as is all too commonly done. That way there's less chance of damaging the base tape bond.

That said, best to avoid cheap tubs altogether anyway....

Ciao, ;)

Re: how do you clean gum/natural tire sidewalls?

Posted: Sun Apr 08, 2012 4:40 am
by theremery
On non coated tubs, you are pretty much stuffed. I use "jiff" on my latex coated ones. Jiff is similar to ajax etc....it's a mildly abrasive cleaner than does a good job on the latex without invasive solvents. Once oil is in to a cotton casing, only a "drycleaning" soak type treatment will help and that would certainly damage not only the bond to wheel and base tape, but it's also hard to see the delicate latex tube not being affected too. FMB tyres are kinda like the clement #1's of old....once they are marked, they are marked. OP...your vitts should clean up fine with Jiff/ajax and a sponge (preferred to a scrubbing brush).

Re: how do you clean gum/natural tire sidewalls?

Posted: Sun Apr 08, 2012 4:40 am
by Weenie