Fixing a tire on the side of the road

david f martin /

Yup. About 2/3 of the way home from work (which is 11 miles from home), I hit a 16 penny nail on the shoulder of the 50mph 6 lane, of course at the bottom of a long hill... The rear tire went out immediately, almost like a blowout. Scared the bejesus out of me, had to bring the bike to a stop with the rear end fishtailing around at 30-35 mph...

I've only had this bike for about a month. I've been replacing cables and carb jets, installing an aircleaner that was missing when I got the bike, polishing the wheels, decorating her with jewelry, trying to make her look tough... A couple of weeks ago, I bought her a new cable lock, a 10-pack of bungee cords (which I keep in the left saddlebag), and a tire repair kit. I carry tools, spare parts, a flashlight, an extra gallon of gas, a couple of bottles of 2-stroke oil, gloves, etc...

Anyway, I found the nail in the tire, pried the tire off of the rim at the fault (on the shoulder, with traffic whizzing by at 50mph at 6:20pm, and it is starting to get dark), found two holes in the innertube and patched them up with my new patch kit.

Guess what?

A patch kit will do you no good if you have no source of air to re-inflate your tire.

So, I pushed the bike up the hill, which I could reasonably call 1/4 mile, with a rear flat. No fun.

Fortunately for me, there is a used car lot with a repair shop at the top of the hill, and a couple of guys were still there, after hours, with the shop doors open.

"Got an airhose I can use?" I asked them. I pulled my bike into the 2 bay garage and filled the rear tire. Air hissed out of the tire, and it went flat again.

My bike is shaft driven, and the rear axle bolt is only attached on one side, so I was able to completely remove the innertube without removing the wheel. (Damn that's smooth!) I pulled the innertube, over-inflated it, and found ANOTHER hole near the two I had already patched. Patched that one up, no more hissing, thanked the guys that were just hanging out there waiting for a friend, made some small talk about VWs...

"That's a cute little thing," one of them remarks. I've heard the work "cute" several times since I got the bike, and it doesn't help that it is a Yamaha QT 50 (get it? "Cutie")... Shit. Oh well.

I stopped by Kmart and bought a bicycle pump, and mounted it to the bike when I got home.

Can you carry enough tools and parts to be prepared for anything?

david

Cee Ohh Too

They also make small CO 2 cartridges that you can use to inflate the tire... Dirt bike riders carry them in their fanny packs to inflate flat tires... Motorcycle shops should have catalogs with them in them.

Re: Cee Ohh Too

One word David F: .... AWESOME!

I still don't understand how jewelry makes your moped look tough, but I'll take your word for it. But, man, you are one prepared mopedian. That's for sure. That is just an awesome tale. Kudos! Most of the time when I have a moped problem, I have to walk all the way home from where I can leave it and then walk back w/ the appropriate tools/parts.

Re: Cee Ohh Too

Ron Brown /

Fred,

Real men always use a bicycle pump!

Kudo's to Dave, that's how it is done.

Ron

Re: Cee Ohh Too

david f martin /

Well, my other ride (which I can't ride right now) is a '67 VW camper. It is prepared for just about anything, too. I carry tools, spare parts, a floorjack and jackstands, extra fuel, etc., along with all the camper stuff, non-perishable foods, propane heater... Like my ped, its not very fast, either...

david

Re: Cee Ohh Too

Ron Brown /

You are a good man, David F. Martin!

Too many people these days only carry a "Harley Davidson/BMW" tool kit consisting of a cell phone and a credit card.

Ron

Real Men

....Nah...... Real men pick up whichever end of the bike is flat and run while carrying it and STILL aren't late to work.

Cheapskate, and tires

david f martin /

Thanks for all the encouragement, guys.

I dunno. Maybe I'm hardheaded. I figure I'd rather fix something myself than pay someone else to do it. I figure if something can be done by someone else, hell, I can do it too. When the hot water heater sprung a leak, I bought a new one, crawled under the house and replaced the old one. Maybe I'm just a cheapskate. I can't remember the last time I paid someone to do anything that I could just do myself...

I look at my ped as an extension of my bus. Both are very simple machines, both are old and need constant lovin'. I'm very intimate with the mechanicals on my bus, and I intend to be the same way with my bike. When I'm riding down the road, I'm listening to the motor and gearbox and wheels and visualizing what's going on inside, and I can usually anticipate problems before they become major.

I called the Yamaha shop today to price new tires. I'll have to go down there in the next day or two and see what kind of tires are available for my bike (a wierd size, 14"). I don't know what kind of selection I have, but I think whitewalls would give the bike a vintage kind of look, but a blackwall with an aggressive tread would give the bike a dirty "prepared for anything" kind of look. They don't keep 14s in stock, so I'll have to wait for them... I'll keep y'all posted...

david

Re: Real Men

Ron Brown /

I suppose that coud work with a moped....

Silly of me not to think of it. I'm sure our rocket car buddy wil be on next telling us to just lift the offending end from the ground while sitting on the seat!

Re: Cheapskate, and tires

Ron Brown /

David,

You want cheap. Check out JC Whitney's Cheng Shins.

Ron

Re: Real Men

david f martin /

When you "boot up" your computer... The term comes from the word "bootstrap", which refers to some story or joke or something about being able to pick yourself up by your bootstraps... Can you do that, Fred?

david

Re: Cheapskate, and tires

david f martin /

The Yamaha shop quoted me around $25 per tire (depending on what I got), and $6.50 per innertube. What do the Cheng Shins run?

Re: Real Men

...Oh sure.... I perfected that right after I invented the internet.. :-)

Re: Cheapskate, and tires

Ron Brown /

Dave,

Sorry,

I loaned my catalog to someone but they have a web site at jcwhitney.com. My best recollection is $12-14,00 but that could have been a sale catalogue.

Ron

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