Monday, August 24, 2009

Talkin' Bout Mudflaps: DIY

Spinal Tap? Anyone?

I found out on a training ride the Continental Contact tires that come with the LHT (yeah you know me) spew out a ton of dust on dry dirt trails like the C&O Tow Path. After a 55 mile ride I was covered in dust and annoyance. After consulting with the LHT&CC google group I decided that a mudflap was just what I needed. However, for something so simple they can be pretty expensive, and I thought I could make one ten different ways out of stuff lying around the house. One way rose to the top, making one out of old mountain bike tubes and glue.

It was pretty simple, I cut open a tube and lay it flat cutting out two sections of similar length and gluing them together. I used one of those dual compound super glues and it seems to work fine. Once it was fully dry I cut the jagged messy edges off and it looked pretty good. Another option might be to use tire patch glue.

Next up, using my Dremel I drilled two small holes in the fender to attach the mudflap. I made the holes as small as I could and far enough from the edges that they wouldn't weaken the fender itself.

Finally I fastened the mudflap to the fender with a small zip tie. I made sure to face the mudflap outward so the curve of the tubes matched that of the tire.


After riding it in this morning I think I may add third or maybe even forth layer of rubber to stiffen the mudflap. It was flapping a bit at high speed.

UPDATE:
I added two more layers of rubber and it seems to work perfectly.

What did the hand say to the Monday?

SLAP!



4 comments:

Terry said...

Hi CJ,

This is a topic of interest to me as I installed the same fenders on my Trek 400 right around the same time as you. I haven't ridden in the rain yet but I have had the mudflap thought in my head as well so I thought I would share a couple of links that might help with your DIY mudflap project, particularly the rigidity challenge.

Alex wetmore has a great tutorial for DIY mudflaps here: http://www.phred.org/~alex/bikes/fendermudflap.html

He suggests using a rubber stair tread, which might help with your rigidity problem.


Also here's a guy w/ a Surly Crosscheck that also used a stair tread: http://www.bicycletouring101.com/BikeDIYMudFlaps.htm

cheers,

Terry

Anonymous said...

More curvature or a vertical fold down the center will add stiffness without additional weight.

Cycle Jerk said...

Terry,
Thanks for the links. I added two more layers of inner tube last night and I think I have reached the desired thickness. I like the stair tread but I think the bike part made from recycled bike parts keeps a nice theme going.

For me the fun of it is to use what is lying around the workspace.

sarah said...

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Susan

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