Sunday, February 15, 2009

Tubeless Tyre repair kits

As mentioned in my blog on last weekend's ride I managed to puncture the Connie's rear tyre in Hicks Bay. Once again the tyre pressure monitoring system on the Connie was fantastic in alerting me to the issue straight away and I pulled over before all of the air had leaked out.

The main cause of this was riding on a gravel road on a pretty well stuffed tyre. When I left home I knew that the tyre was on it's way out but I thought that it would last the 1,600km ok. I probably didn't allow for the very hot conditions and the crappy condition of most of the North Island's roads but luckily the story has a happy ending.

Following a puncture the day before on Cowboyz ZX-9 the team were pretty practised at using the repair kits so plenty of help was on hand to advise me on the repair job. The hole was discovered pretty quickly and the rasp in the repair kit was used to hone the hole out a little before I poked the plug in. We didn't use any of the gas canisters to inflate the tyre as the house I stopped outside of had a compressor that we borrowed.

Riding off I was quite cautious and kept a close eye on the tyre pressure readout all the way home but had absolutely no issues at all and in the picture below you can see what the repair looked like after another 500km of riding. Cowboyz also had no issue with his repair and he was traveling two-up for the most part.

All in all the repair kit has more than paid for itself by getting me home safely after an incident miles from a friendly bike shop. The only issue I think there is with the kits is the gas canisters. Firstly they are expensive and you'd need a few to get decent pressure in the tyre. The second issue is that I doubt that you'd get the full required pressure as once there is some pressure in the tyre it gets to the point where it equalises with the pressure in the canister.

On Cowboyz's bike we only used one canister (still had plenty of air in his tyre as it hadn't actually gone down) and when it was removed there was still air in it but because of the pressure balancing out the air was wasted. We could have put on another canister but you'd end up getting less and less of the air from the canister into the tyre as the tyre's pressure increased. I am seriously thinking of getting a cheap 12 volt compressor to plug into the Connie's accessory socket as you can't pick where the next puncture will happen...

Used Strada:

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