Tire Repair???

Discussion in 'GS Boxers' started by webjester, Nov 12, 2012.

  1. slartidbartfast

    slartidbartfast Love those blue pipes

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    I am a great believer in getting as much mileage from my tires as reasonably possible. I have also had good results with sticky string plugs.

    In your case, If you were on the road, I'd say "plug it and keep going" As you're at home, however, I suggest just replacing the tire. If you really want to mess with it, you might try injecting a small amount of rubber glue into the hole with a hypodermic needle. IMO, it's hardly worth the hassle for just a couple of thousand miles though.
    #21
  2. CheckerdD

    CheckerdD Long timer

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    I think it's a question of how pissed off your going to be if the tire spits out the string. If the answer is very pissed off, replace the tire. I agree with those who say another flat will not likely be a catastrophic failure. It will just leak out a bit quicker than the first time because the hole will be a bit bigger. I bought a new TKC and headed to Colorado a couple of years ago. In Salt Lake City I looked at the tire and there was a nail sticking out of it. Because I was planning to ride some difficult Colorado passes with friends I replaced the tire even though it only had 300 miles on it. I did not want to burden my friends with a flat on Black Bear. But if I had been on a trip to visit my mother in law I would have just patched it. Dave

    PS Another issue is the location of the hole. One in the center of the tire is more likely to hold, one on the side or sidewall wont hold as long if at all. In the above example the nail was on the tread on the right side of the tire.
    #22
  3. webjester

    webjester Adventurer

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    Thanks guys, for all your responses. Looks like I hit quite the nerve (as expected). However, I feel way more confident now to give the tires a few more miles.:wink:
    #23
  4. Chat Lunatique

    Chat Lunatique aka El Gato Loco

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    #24
  5. Loutre

    Loutre Cosmopolitan Adv

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    use a plug and if you you're afraid that that might not be working than put a tube in the plugged tyre.
    #25
  6. TomDac

    TomDac Been here awhile

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    Definitely don't use slime or other goo that you put inside.. It will be very messy and the guy who takes that tire off will have to deal with all that mess... Goo is good for tubes, IMHO... I use it on my Mountain bike tires and it works nicely.

    Everyone has said good things... No answer is wrong.. It's your decision. I'd be temped to plug it with either a string or a shroom type plug just to get practiced at doing it, then riding it around for a few days before taking it in and getting a new tire put on.

    This will give you some practice plugging a tire and could save you some time and aggravation later down the road when you're forced to do it while on a ride.... There's definitely a little bit of finesse involved with doing this, so practice is good.

    Good luck!
    #26
  7. slartidbartfast

    slartidbartfast Love those blue pipes

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    I am pretty certain that a tube is more likely to suddenly and catastrophically fail than a plug. You would have to have a pretty badly damaged tire for that solution to be required. Also, installing a tube in a stiff tire can be quite an awkward job (by the side of the road, in the rain, etc), whereas a string plug can be installed in a couple of minutes. Plus, if you're removing the tire and valve stem to insert the tube you could install a patch plug (despite the good results I've had with sticky string, I don't doubt they are superior)
    #27
  8. SiouxsieCat

    SiouxsieCat Been here awhile

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    I say if the plug holds air, go for it, just check it on every mount for a while.
    I've had plugs outlast tires and I've had plugs fail to hold air.
    #28
  9. Bill-66

    Bill-66 Hencho in Kansas

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    Neat..I just use three tire irons..but same effect as that..keeps me from having to lift a bike up on the side stand..:lol3

    May give those a shot..be aware, those or the three iron method don't just "pop" the bead off..you'll have to work your way around..
    #29
  10. Steptoe

    Steptoe steptoe

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    New tyres can fail suddenly as well. :lol3


    A bolt in my tyre, morocco 2007.
    Used TWO plugs to fix the hole and rode back to the UK through spain and france (1600 miles), and carried on using it until the tyre wore out.

    [​IMG]]
    #30
  11. ElMartillo

    ElMartillo I See Faces...

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    Lots of great advice here. I ride on rope-type plugged tires if necessary without worry.

    I would take the opportunity to practice plugging the tire, perhaps removal and replacement of tire if you opt for a patch, and as a wake-up call to make sure I have tire repair tools and fresh supplies with me any time I'm on the bike. You can get a flat anywhere!

    Cheers!:D
    #31
  12. Mudcat

    Mudcat Unregistered

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    Now, that is just mean. :evil
    #32
  13. ACD

    ACD old nOOb

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    On the night before leaving for a long trip I noticed a leak, a big nail stuck in the rear tire. I used a mushroom type plug to fix it and rode on. This fix lasted about 6,000 km.

    When I got home I replaced the tire for knobbies and forgot about the plug. Later on re-installed the plugged tire and rode about 1,000 km on it until it failed. The steel threads cut through the mushroom head and it came out. By then I had lost my plugger so I put in a sticky rope instead. Rode for a long time.

    Last week I left for a 2,000 km round-trip and 50 km into it the sticky rope came out. I replaced it and rode on, to my fellow riders amazement. I found out they were not carrying tools or tire fixers other than what came with the bike! 1,000 km later got another flat! Another big nail got into my rear tire. This is getting old fast... Another 500 km and the tire spit one of the ropes. I inspected the hole and found out it had a little gash in it, perhaps 1 or 2 mm wide. I saw people using more than one sticky rope to fix a larger hole like that, but I decided to replace the tire.

    On the next big town I google a motorcycle tire store, and found out not every store keeps an inventory of GS sized tires. I asked for patches and the guy suggested these:

    [​IMG]

    I have never seen it before but it worked great. Push the wire through the hole from inside and pull it until the round base coated with vulcanizing cement hits the tire, then trim the excess that sticks out. I replaced all the sticky ropes with these blue mushrooms and drove the remaining 500 km without surprises (knocking on wood!).
    #33
  14. chrome bandit

    chrome bandit Wide footed adventurer

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    ...is there a secret to correctly getting the string patch to behave well with the driver tool so that the string doesn't disintegrate on getting inserted into tool and tire? My first attempt with a string patch ended in square knot (I think), and I went the mushroom route. Or perhaps I'm not buying the correct brand of string...?

    I'd had good success with mushroom plugs, as in getting a thousand more miles, but worry about what ACD described...the head getting snipped off by the radial tire. I do like the application technique, it's pretty easy.
    #34
  15. JimVonBaden

    JimVonBaden "Cool" Aid!

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    Cheap string plugs are as good as more expensive ones. The key to inserting them is to ream the hole well, always turning in the same direction, and push the string in until 1/2" or less is out, then a smart pull on the handle to withdraw the tool should set it. Let it sit for a few minutes, then cut off the excess flush.

    As posted before: http://www.jimvonbaden.com/Tire_Plugging.html

    Jim :brow
    #35
  16. aGremlin

    aGremlin Been here awhile

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    I always leave a little sticking out, not cutting it off flush. There is always the rare chance it could get pushed into the tyre. Equally, don't leave a heap so it can be pulled out of the tyre. Doesn't take long before it's a little puddle on the outside of the tyre...
    #36
  17. turbodieseli4i6

    turbodieseli4i6 Been here awhile

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    Are you a Insurance salesman?
    #37
  18. Twilight Error

    Twilight Error Going nowhere slowly

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    Plug it and ride.

    I got a flat several miles from home once, no BMW dealer within 300 miles to source a new tire from and there was little chance the Honda shop 30 miles behind me would have a tire for my GS.
    So I put a string plug in and rode forward.

    Just outside Chadron, Nebraska (some 100 miles later), the string plug failed. So I put two string plugs in and turned around, there was an open auto repair shop in Chadron. Jimmy, who had never seen a BMW motorcycle (nevermind work on one) mounted the wheel in his tire changer, popped a bead off and installed an internal patch. The wheel was buttoned back up and I rode that tire back to Connecticut and replaced it after a couple thousand more miles.


    The moral: If a string plug fails, try two. If you're unsure two will hold, the rear wheel of a GS (and likely any BMW) can be mounted in any shop's tire changer and opened up. An internal patch, with the string plug stubs still in place, will last many thousands of miles.
    #38
  19. apexal

    apexal Been here awhile

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    I only see one option here: #1
    #39
  20. chrome bandit

    chrome bandit Wide footed adventurer

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    Thanks for responding to this and posting the instructional, which I find super helpful, it just skips over my main issue - the string seems to disintegrate when I try to insert it into the tool, as if it's too big into get into the 'needle' hole of the insertion tool. When I finally did achieve partial connection, the string would not go into the tire hole, it would get jumbled up and get cut up by the insertion tool.

    I did not, however, know the guidance to a) squish it flat in the beginning; and b) insert the string into the tire using the same twisting direction, so that could be part of it too.

    Perhaps I just picked up cheap stuff too, couldn't figure out there is a quality bar for the tire licorice.
    #40