Sketchy Ride

Down for a few days.

A few days ago when I was still at Navajo Lake, I noticed Honda’s front tire was a little soft. I pumped it up and it held overnight, only losing a few pounds by morning. It was a very slow leak and I thought maybe a can of fix-a-flat would solve the problem. I purchased the fix-a-flat, pumped it into the tire, drove a few miles to seal the leak, and waited to check the results. After two days the tire was still up, and I had driven twice to a town 20 miles away and once exploring all the campgrounds in Heron State Park. I thought I had the tire fixed but yesterday proved me wrong.

Chama, New Mexico is only 20 miles away so I decided to make a quick run to the market to pick up a few groceries. I got kind of a late start and almost turned around because of rain clouds building in my direction. I decided to chance it and kept going. I reached the store just as it began to sprinkle and parked under an outdoor canopy. When I jumped off of Honda, a store employee called my attention to a soft front tire.

I looked for more tire goop to put in to get me home but the store was out. There was a service station next door and I slowly rolled over and pumped air in the tire. I could tell the tire was not going to last long because I could hear air escaping at an alarming rate. I jumped on and headed for home anyway.

I think the tire lost most of the air very quickly. My tires are quite good quality Michelin with very stiff sidewalls and I discovered that keeping my speed up caused the centrifugal force to hold the tire somewhat rigid. The tires are so stiff that it is a job to pull the tire bead open enough to replace a tube. I sat far back on the seat to take as much weight as I could off the front end and road just ahead of a rainstorm chasing me all the way home.

No sightseeing on this trip.

I took the tire apart today and found that the valvestem was torn at the base. I have patches but no home remedy for a torn valvestem. I talked to the camp host about a store nearby that might have a tube. He gave me a couple suggestions that proved fruitless when I gave them a call. He also told me that he gets Amazon shipped here and supplied me with an address. I told him my 14 days were up soon and didn’t know if I would be here that long. He told me not to worry about it because no one would care if I had to stay longer.

So I texted Daryl and had him order the tube for me. After quite a turmoil trying to get Amazon to recognize my address, he finally got it to take. I should have the tube in three days.

2 Responses to “Sketchy Ride”

  1. Donna says:

    What a bummer you have to replace the tube, but good you don’t have to replace the whole tire! If you have to hang out someplace, seems like that’s a pretty nice spot to do it. Hope you’re rolling soon!

  2. Dick says:

    Never a dull moment in the life of a full timer.

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