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Old MTB Tires - Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

Lauren

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Looking for tips on what to do with old MTB tires. We have 15-20 tires in our basement that are not on bicycles. They range from "nearly new" to "well-worn". There are a couple in the pile that my husband will use again (he swaps tires once or twice a season based on trails and conditions, whereas I ride what I ride and almost never swap), and 1-2 that I will keep as a back-up set.

I don't want to send them to the landfill/tire pit...so, what to do?

- Reduce...Looking to reduce the waste by reusing or recycling
- Reuse...Sell/give away old mtb tires? Non-profits that provide bikes at low/no cost? Anyone done this, or have advice for organizations to look into?
- Recycle...or "upcycle"...Crafts and projects? I tried to scour the internet to find something creative but came up short (lots of inner-tube or wheel crafts, but not much for the tires themselves).

What do you do with your old bike tires?
 

wooglin

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Lauren

Lauren

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I take mine for recycling locally.
I'm going to have to find out if we have something like this locally...exactly what I'm hoping to find. If anyone knows of anything like this in New England, I'd love to know!

@wooglin - Great call on checking with a local bike shop...I'll definitely ask!
 

cantunamunch

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- Recycle...or "upcycle"...Crafts and projects? I tried to scour the internet to find something creative but came up short (lots of inner-tube or wheel crafts, but not much for the tires themselves).

What do you do with your old bike tires?

There's a guy here who used to do dock fenders out of them by wiring the bead shut and squirting in poly foam. *shrug* maybe poly foam got expensive?

If you have a reciprocating saw, it's a lot easier to cut them to shape. Be aware that bonding them with, say, epoxy, is tricky unless you super-clean the dust off the surface. (me: ultrasonic cleaner and a ziploc baggie and boom). Acrylic resins work fine and if you bond a supermagnet to the tread side, you can has impact bumpers for everyplace you need.

Trivial to do ski tip or tail guards if you're up for drilling through for a mechanical connection (rivet or screw rivet)
 

4ster

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Near where I live in Utah there is a Bicycle Collective that builds & refurbishes old bikes. You may look for something in your community for the tires that still have some good tread.
 

Tom K.

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Check with the local NICA coach.
 

cantunamunch

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I tried to scour the internet to find something creative but came up short (lots of inner-tube or wheel crafts, but not much for the tires themselves).

I'm kind of surprised you didn't get any weight plate edging.

Especially after the lockdown tripled plate prices and everyone and their small-business-running-dog was pouring DIY home gym concrete plates.
 
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Lauren

Lauren

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I'm kind of surprised you didn't get any weight plate edging.

Especially after the lockdown tripled plate prices and everyone and their small-business-running-dog was pouring DIY home gym concrete plates.
Took me a minute to figure out what "weight plate edging" meant...but I got it after re-reading your second sentence. I did not come across anything like that...nor will I be using them as such.
 

cantunamunch

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Took me a minute to figure out what "weight plate edging" meant...but I got it after re-reading your second sentence.

*shrug* I specifically did not use the word 'bumper' because that has become a semi-standard term for the rubberized plates that are built to be dropped.
 
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Lauren

Lauren

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*shrug* I specifically did not use the word 'bumper' because that has become a semi-standard term for the rubberized plates that are built to be dropped.
I'm not up to date on weight lifting terms so that probably would've gone even further over my head. :D
 

Tricia

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Lots of good ideas here.
Thanks for bringing it up.
 
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Lauren

Lauren

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For anyone following for advice for themselves...I feel this one is worth mentioning that was posted on a local MTB Facebook group.

Bikes not Bombs

They're in the Boston area and it seems like their only current drop off is in Jamaica Plain, which is a bit far for me.
 

Daniel

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As @4ster mentioned upthread, here in Utah we have numerous Bike Collectives, which are non-profit community bike shops. They mainly cater to refugees, immigrants, the homeless population, the alternative-lifestyle crowd, etc. They're equipped with multiple bike repair stands (for rent by the fractional hour) and have about every bike-related tool in existence for use by those performing their own bike maintenance and repairs. Staff are on hand to offer assistance and are typically cycling fanatics. They accept donations of bikes, components, accessories, and the like (including tires and tubes) and resell at very reasonable prices. The one in SLC has been in existence forever and has huge inventories of every (used) bike part imaginable in large wooden crates for customers to dig through. Perhaps there is something similar in your local area?

Alternatively, two of the three bike shops closest to my home recycle (usable or repairable) tires, tubes, and rim strips of customers for whom they've replaced the same with brand new inventory by placing them in large boxes outside the shop for anybody in need of a tire with some wear or a tube in need of a patch to take for free. I'm sure there are other bike shops up and down the Wasatch Front that do the same. I've availed myself of free used tires and tubes offered up in the same manner several times while on long bike tours in N. America, Europe, and Oceania. If a bike shop in your area recycles used tires in this fashion, drop them off and someone will ultimately repurpose them on their ride at some point.
 

Tony S

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Be aware that bonding them with, say, epoxy, is tricky unless you super-clean the dust off the surface. (me: ultrasonic cleaner and a ziploc baggie and boom).
Where were you when I needed you? I pretty much trashed the appearance of a hard-shell suitcase trying to do this and failing. It didn't have any kind of "feet" on the big faces, which meant that when you lay it down in the back of a wagon it slid all over the place every time you went around a corner. I had the brilliant idea to glue squares of mtb tire onto the corners. Nope. I tried about three kinds of glue and none of them would adhere to the tire. At least now it's highly recognizable on the carousel.
 

cantunamunch

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I had the brilliant idea to glue squares of mtb tire onto the corners. Nope. I tried about three kinds of glue and none of them would adhere to the tire. At least now it's highly recognizable on the carousel.

This is the sort of application where one pop riveter is more effective than years of chemistry.
 

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