Rottweiler Posted April 20, 2006 Share Posted April 20, 2006 Last night I was awakened by my pager after having been asleep for only 10 minutes. I had to go back to work to fix the stuff my company pays me to fix. At least it’s overtime, and it’s 65 degrees out so I’ll be riding the RT. At mile 37 of the 38 I needed to travel things got weird. I was on Rt. 80 which is a 65 mph road, and since I was getting paid by the hour, I was doing the speed limit and just trying to enjoy the ride. I could tell something wasn’t right, but I didn’t know what. It felt like I was being hit by strong cross winds, which is no big deal on the RT. Then I heard the sound, like there was a big loud truck coming up fast behind me, but there was no truck in site. Then the handling changed, as if I was riding on a road with deeply rutted tire tracks from heavy truck traffic, but Rt. 80 is a smooth super slab. I eased it to a gentle stop on the dimly lit shoulder about a ¼ mile from my exit to take a look. Sure enough, the rear tire was totally flat. With traffic zipping past me at 70+ mph, I had to get to the exit. I put on my flashers and at a walking pace, road to my exit and off the hiway to a closed but well lit gas station at the end of the exit ramp. I called my wife to let her know that I may need her assistance picking me up or bringing me tools, she was not pleased at 11:30 to hear this news. Now it was time to see if I was as prepared as I thought I should be for my first ever flat on the road. Heeding the advice of some on this board, I left the BMW tire repair kit in my garage and instead carried a small electric air pump and a Dynaplug tire plugger. Using the small pocket flashlight that I also always carry, I located a hole between 1/8” and 3/16” dia. in the center of the tread. I could see metal in it below the tread surface. I took out the Dynaplug directions and re-read them (good thing I had my glasses, it sucks getting old). I attempted to load the first plug in the tool, using water to lubricate it as the directions suggested, but struggled too much and broke the plug. The Dynaplug kit comes with 4 plugs so I had 3 more tries. I would suggest to anyone who has the kit to purchase more plugs today. I also discovered that good old spit works much better than water to help you get the plug into the insertion tool. Plug #2 went in easily, however the hole in the tire was much too large for just one plug. The last 2 plugs also went in easily. At this point I was ready to inflate the tire, and the Walmart special 12v pump worked GREAT. The plug seamed to be holding but would have been better if I had used all four plugs or maybe even more. Off I went to work just a half mile down the road only to find out that the technician I was covering for forgot that I was covering his standby and had already come and gone and did the job for me, but that’s another story. Now it was time to see if I could make it back home another 38 miles of hiway. I checked the pressure and it was still good, but I could hear air leaking from the plug. I figured I could just stop every 5 or 10 minutes to top it off if needed. My first destination was a rest stop on the Garden State Parkway about 5 miles away via Rt.3 …no sweat!. I pulled into the rest area into a brightly lit spot and checked the pressure…10 lbs.!!! I tried moving the plugs a little and psssssss, total air loss. I got on the phone to my very unhappy wife (it was almost 2am) and talked her into my tool box to get the BMW tire repair kit and to get some sockets and ratchets just in case I needed to remove the rear wheel. I still have the last tire I removed when it wore out (still had some life left in it) and was I going to get out my tire changing stuff and put on my old tire and then wake my extremely unhappy wife up again to drive me back out to put my new old tire back on. That is if the BMW tire repair kit failed, which I’m happy to say it did not. It was actually easy to put the plug in, perhaps because it was such a large hole. I didn’t attempt to use the CO2 fillers that came with the kit, I had the Walmart special 12v electric pump which is a bargain at less than $20. I had previously removed the large plastic box it comes in and made a small form fitting perforated metal housing for it and it fits neatly into the tail section. My wife followed me home at about 55 mph which is as slow as I dared to go for fear of being run off the road at 3am, and I managed to get another 20 minutes of sleep before I had to get up for work again which is where I am now. When I’m done with this, I’ll be ordering some tires and one of those good plugger tools, and then if work is quiet I’ll try to take a nap (yah..right). I have Bridgestone BT020 tires now with about 12kmiles so it was time anyway, I think I’ll try the Metzler M880’s this time around. So what did I learn, the Dynaplug is probably best for 1/8” holes or less and you should have lots of plugs to use with it. It still seams like a good tool even though it didn’t work for me this time. Bigger holes require a bigger plug so get one of those mushroom type plug guns for better results. Don’t be so quick to ditch the BMW tire repair kit at least for the plugs, although I know I will now need a new tube of glue for it as they tend to dry up once opened. Always have a good flashlight, your reading glasses and a fully charged phone with you. And finally, always treat your wife right because she’s probably the only one that will come out at midnight to save your ass. Sorry this post was so long, we could all use a nice nap now. Link to comment
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