Stretching Your Tubulars
Excellent tip from Leigh on how to make your tubular tires a little easier to deal with. Thanks for the tip Leigh!
When riding a bike, there is not too much better than racing on tubular wheels. But they can be a pain in the ass to change if you get a puncture. Be it in a race or on the way to/from one. A little tip I picked up was to have them pre-stretched. This is pretty easy to do.
With my spare tubular tyres I always keep one pre-stretched on an old wheel or rim that you could ask your LBS for. In my case an old kinked Ksyrium SL rim, with no spokes or hubs, that I picked up for free. You could ask the shop to keep one for you if they show up from time to time.
I keep this next to my race wheel bag with a tyre on it at all times, so that when I head out to race on the Tubs, I just take it off the rim and fold it up with a rubber band to secure it.
I haven’t had the best of luck with punctures with my tubs, so it makes it easy to roll on the stretched spare and inflate it to get home. (Old Jack McGowan knows me by name. He is the guru tubular repairer)
I also find having just the rim, makes it easy to use extra force (ie your foot) to stabilise the rim, when strecthing new tubulars before gluing.