|It sucks to be me…|
When I rode a sport bike I pretty much checked my pressure once in a while, and took the bike in to have the tires changed when I hit the wear bars on the rubber.
Moving to a dual purpose bike like the 2004 KLR 650 meant that I could do much more of my own maintenance on the bike, including tire and tube changes, and, because I’d planned on riding it off road and managed to put on over 76,000 kilometres on it, I guess I’ve done well over fifteen tire changes on it for one reason or another. My buddy Willie was a real help there, as he’s no stranger to tire changes, and any errors I make here are purely my own, not his.
So there are two locations you’ll experience a flat, one is when it’s parked in the garage, and you’ve conveniently got all the tools close to hand to deal with it straight away. The other occurs when you’re miles from home in the least convenient place possible, usually when you’ve a time to be somewhere else that afternoon. Dinner with the wife, or a night out with your friends.
So I’ll start by telling you what I use for flats, and a bit of information I’ve found on the internet and through word of mouth for dealing with them.
Tools – Tube type tires
|Bead Breaking Clamp|
|Bead Breaker Tool|
|Spruce Bead Breaker|
|Motion-Pro Bead Popper
(Hammer not shown)
|DRC Valve pulling tool|
|$15 bucks at walmart, and it works!|
|Valve tool. I’ve only had to use the top end of this so far.|
This guy makes it look easy.
Okay, so that was the garage… in the field you have to use what you brought with you, and if you hauled the garage, no wonder you got a flat. I’ve been there, done that, and I learned the hard way that you’re far better off packing the bike as light as possible and ensuring that you and your riding partners carry the kit spread out between yourselves. So lets go over that list and see what I like to carry on my bike: