bicycle tire sidewall hole

Yep, that’s a hole in one alright. I have “been there” before. A few years ago one of my fairly new Schwalbe Tryker tires I was trying out got damaged when the sidewall ran into something and my tire was pretty much ruined. Later at home I placed a “boot” inside of it and got some additional miles out of it. I don’t recommend this, but I did it as I was rather disturbed over the fact that I had so few miles on the tire when it happened. For what it is worth I am not impressed with the Tryker tires because of this issue of the delicate sidewalls. Many others have said the same thing.

Anyway, what I want to talk about here is one of those “what ifs” … namely what if you are out riding and a tire gets damaged like this … what do you do? Most of us don’t carry around spare tires … well maybe lots of us do, but I am talking about tires for our trikes not extra weight around our waist. 🙂 If the inner tube is bulging out thru the sidewall or road surface of one of our tires we have a concern, a problem. It is not a good idea to try to ride on a tire like that. It most likely will result in further damage and failure. We will find ourselves broke down alongside the road or trail. So what do we do? Our Uncle Sam can come to our rescue. Just pull out a $100 bill or if you don’t have a $100 bill you can use five $20 bills. I am only kidding. Take out a $1 bill and depending upon the size of the damaged area of the tire you may be able to fold the $1 bill before placing it as a boot on the inside of the tire over the damaged area. You don’t want the boot to be too small or else it could be forced thru the hole rather than keep the inner tube where it belongs. Our dollar bills aren’t worth the paper they are printed on anyway so it is not a big thing to use one for this purpose.

dollar bill boot in tire

If you have a tire which the inner tube is forcing the cut or hole to open further than you need to use an emergency tire boot of some sort. If you have high pressure tires it would be a very good idea to reduce the pressure in the tire down to it’s minimum pressure so that there won’t be as much force from inside … trying to get outside. 🙂 You may even have to reduce the pressure even lower depending upon what things look like as you air the tire back up.

cut in bicycle tire

Mind you this is a temporary patch job just to hopefully get you back home, or to your vehicle, or to a bike shop where you can replace the tire.

By the way, I know that U.S. paper bills work in this application because of the way they are made. I have no idea how the paper currency of other nations are made so unless they are made quite similar to U.S. paper bills I don’t think they would do the job.

They do sell emergency tire boot patches which one could carry with them. I don’t know anything about them as I have never even seen one much less used one. ParkTool’s TB-2 emergency tire boot is probably the best known available.

ParkTool boot patches

ParkTool boot patch

But if you don’t happen to have one of these available just remember the $1000 bill (or ten $100 bills) trick. Just pull one out and … Did I really say that?

Yeah, just grab one of these out of the big roll in your pocket …

$1000 bill emerrgency tire boot

Hey, really … this use of a $1 bill could save the day and help you to …


Author: Steve Newbauer

I have a few current blogs (tadpolerider1, navysight, truthtoponder and stevesmixedbag) so I am keeping busy. I hope you the reader will find these blogs interesting and enjoy your time here. Feel free to email me at tadpolerider2 at gmail dot com (@gmail.com)

2 thoughts on “HOLE IN ONE”

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