Continuing from my previous post I've decided to increase the puncture resistance of my tyres by adding tyre liners, specifically I've purchased a pair of Panaracer Flataway liners. These are a little different from other liners I've seen because they are made of Kevlar fabric instead of hard plastic. The thing that has always turned me off other tyre liners is the possibility of getting a pinch flat from the liner itself. However hopefully the Kevlar will provide additional protection against shards of glass penetrating my inner tubes. Here's how you install it:
Firstly I picked out the existing glass embedded in the tyre, I'm still surprised at the amount of glass the rear tyre will pick up. There was about 5 bits of sharp glass bits sitting in the rubber, just waiting to pierce my inner tube.
The first step is removing the tyre and cleaning out the inside, this is to ensure that you will get a good adhesion with the liner. The Panaracer Flataways are unique in that they are adhesive backed, this probably will prevent any pinch flats.
The liner is installed leaving a slight overlap, the MTB version of the Flataways is 2150mm x 40mm which is sufficient for a 26 x 1-3/8 tyre with a few inches of leftover liner, installation was pretty easy.
Now the liner is in, hopefully I won't get anymore flats. Seeing that the Kevlar is quite flexible it shouldn't increase rolling resistance by any noticeable amount. I'll keep it updated on how useful it is. As a side note the instructions say that the Kevlar may cause chafing and to replace your tubes every one or two years. This shouldn't really be a problem as I would probably go through that many tubes anyway. Thanks for reading!
Update December 2012
I suffered a puncture even with these liners, on the rear tyre. A shard of glass managed to work it's way through and puncture the inner tube. I suspect the rear tyre is getting a little worn and thin, the compound used is quite soft and appears to wear quite quickly.
Update October 2014
The flataway liners eventually degraded to the point that they developed edges which eventually rubbed a hole into the tube. Continued in Part IV here