Tire repair… or not

So apparently a bike tire isn’t the same as a bike wheel – who knew?

Big Ring.

For years that dear, semi-patient husband of mine has been correcting me every time I talk about the bike tire when I should be referring to the bike wheel and vice versa. What do you mean it’s not a tire, I’d say, it looks like a tire, how could it not be a tire? But he kept saying wheel, wheel, wheel. And I kept getting more, more, more confused. He tried explaining it. He tried visuals. He tried analogies. He tried separating the parts into a pie chart of tire, wheel, tube and some other rubbery thingy. None of it stuck.

And so, I suppose it shouldn’t come as a surprise that when I told him one of my favourite running chicks was hosting a tire repair session at her house, he practically bounced up and down, gleefully clapping his hands, thinking – I’m sure – finally someone else can take her uneducated cyclist’s brain off my hands!

Well, dear Big Ring, it seems I’m not the only one majorly confused on the concepts of a wheel/tire. On Sunday afternoon, I sat in the garage of a favourite’s house with about 10 other women; the majority just as lost as I!


As Cycling Rick instructed the class, we girls tried to do our best, we tried to focus, we tried to take in all the different steps, but, well, there was a bottle of wine included in the mix. Need I say more 😀

It seemed we were more interested in why the CO2 cartridges were wrapped in a “beer cozy”; to keep you from freezing the skin off your fingers when activating the cartridge. Or concerned when our set of tire levers broke into three; don’t worry that’s supposed to happen. Or worried we’d messed everything up when the inner tube plum plopped out of the wheel midway through the session; again, nothing of concern, that was to happen. Or (this one was mine) flabbergasted as to why the heck we were being instructed to deflate our tires in the first place, I mean, doesn’t that defeat the purpose? You don’t want to start with a flat tire!

Through it all Cycling Rick kept his cool, kept his patience, he smiled, he nodded, he genuinely instructed. But oh that poor, poor unfortunate soul, I’m sure I saw the pieces of his cycling loving heart crumble when the question almost all of us were thinking came up: “But wouldn’t it be easier to just carry a cell phone and call for help when needed?”

Yep. We are those women – and proud of it! Love my girls 😀

Don’t worry Cycling Rick, one of us was paying attention 😉


  • 4:00 p.m. BG before: 5.6
  • Temp. basal: none
  • Carbs: Honey Stinger waffle 1 hour prior, no bolus (20g); 2 Clif shot blocks 5 minutes prior, no bolus (16g)
  • Distance: 8 km
  • Average pace: 5:23 min/km 😀
  • Time: 43:03
  • 5:30 p.m. BG after: 6.6And for those of you actually wanting to know the different parts of the wheel, here is a photo diagram:

And for those you actually wanting to know the different parts of the wheel, here is a photo diagram:


Are you a tire changer or a cell phone carrier?

5 thoughts on “Tire repair… or not”

  1. I’m a cell phone carrier.
    I CAN change a tire in no time at all but I don’t CARRY a spare tube or a pump or levers.
    I choose to not carry the stuff because I have nowhere to put it BECAUSE I need my carbs and glucose meter more than I need a spare tube.

    It doesn’t happen often in fact rarely but if it does, I just call 🙂

  2. I remember when I started to drive, my dad made sure to teach me how to change a tire. He even put in a bull bar because I wasn’t strong enough to use the normal wrench to get my tire off. Then I got a flat tire… and I couldn’t figure out how to get the tire out from underneath my truck, because no one had shown me how to do that!!! I didn’t have a cell phone, so I ended up getting helped by a very nice man who stopped and had the tire nearly changed when my dad also drove past and came back to help me. 🙂 So yes, I hope I could change a bike tire (though I lost my tire changing kit a few years back and should replace it), but … 🙂

  3. When I used to ride my pink (need I say more) bike around Stanley Park on Sunday mornings. I carried a quarter and a $20 bill – pre-everyone owning cellphone days – so that if anything happened I could call a taxi, dropping off the bike at a bike shop, and go home. Now I have a husband who unfolds and folds my Brompton for me. Where does the air go? I don’t know.
    And my skill? I make the best hors d’oeuvres you’ve ever tasted.

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