Sidewalk Motorcycle Tire Repair


| 11/17/2010 10:07:55 AM


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A stifled belch. My oldest daughter, Heidi Rose, and I leave the Sassy Onion. We are more than full of breakfast. Its time for some Sunday back-to-college clothes shopping. We walk down the street to Bonnie, my trusty T100 Triumph Bonneville. Life is good. But something isn’t right. The bike is standing a bit more vertical than usual. It is almost to the point of tipping off of the sidestand. What’s this? A flat rear tire! Looks like it's time for a little motorcycle tire repair.

I consider my options. One is to take the tire off and bring it to the dealer for a fix. This won’t work. The bike shops are closed. Another is to push the bike eight blocks back to the house. No way. Pushing a bike with a flat is awful work. I could leave the bike here, take the wheel home, fix it, and come back. This will take hours. It seems best to repair the tire here and now. We have a centerstand, tools, and a tire repair kit.

tire repair 1 

The bike is rolled onto the sidewalk, pulled up onto the centerstand, and spun around so the wheel is hanging over the gutter. Supplies and tools are laid out on the walk to make sure everything is there. Minor surgery is done to remove the right muffler and the brake caliper. The axle is pulled and the wheel is dropped. This task is an olfactory nightmare. Never change a flat in a gutter near a tavern.

tire repair 2 

gavin
12/2/2010 12:02:50 PM

Great breakdown of fixing the flat. However, I can understand not patching the tube, but no patch on the inside of the tire? I'm a little surprised by that but my motorcycle mechanical experience is limited.


andy sherman
11/22/2010 3:07:08 PM

I just fixed a flat in the rain with a road loaded BMW. I am thankful it was tubeless. I used the gryyp tire repair system (look for the review in the next issue of Motorcycle Classics Magazine)and was back on the road in less than 10 minutes. I am impressed with your job on the triumph!


triumphdave2
11/18/2010 7:22:49 PM

I can't believe that he wasn't harassed by the police or a shop owner for doing a vehical repair on a public sidewalk. I am impressed with his effort, I probably would have just called my buddy with a trailer to come get me.


scott williams
11/18/2010 1:01:35 PM

Dealers are charging big bucks for this these days, so thanks for the detailed tutorial. I suspect that in the case of this flat, a weekly inspection of the rear tire would have turned up the rivet before it made its way into the tube, so this is a good cautionary tale, as well. Inspect your tires to prevent flats, but know how to fix them for that inevitable day.


motorcycho
11/18/2010 11:51:25 AM

Never seems that easy when I do it!


pedro vonpetrol
11/18/2010 10:51:27 AM

Thanks for the submission; this is great advice and a sound lesson. Too often anymore, people have a "I can't do it" attitude and when they see someone work through a problem it amazes them.


wideload
11/18/2010 10:24:42 AM

To have the skill and tools available to do a roadside repair is admirable in itself. To do it while under inevitable public scrutiny makes it more impressive. I have none of the above. Would I be jinxed if I said I have had a flat tire since 1971?





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