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I pulled my scooter out yesterday. Back tire was flat. So I air it up. Start rolling it forward until I find a nail. Had a hard time getting it out, but did and plugged the whole. Went out and did what I had to do. I keep thinking whether I should get a new tire or not. This tire has at least another 8,000 miles on it. But you only have 2 wheels and in 12 days I doing a run down to Big Bend National Park. This is Southwest Texas on the Mexican Boarder. Not much out there. So I called the dealer and have a appointment for new tires. The front tire is about ready for a new one anyway. So here's my question. Do any of you run plugged tires for ant length of time. Other than to get home etc. Bad luck doing it, good luck doing it. I run elite 3's and they ain't cheap.
 

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I'll probably get flamed for this...BUT...

Some people will say don't trust your life on it, etc...but the rear tire is not as bad. I've lost the rear at highway speeds before and made it to the shoulder fine. I carry a mushroom plug kit in my tool roll and a small electric pump.

I ran a mushroom plugged tire on my last BMW Touring bike for over 3K miles. BMW had their own that came with the bikes but Stop n Go makes pretty much the same thing. I've run mushroom plugs on cars as well until the tires went bald. I don't care for the rope or dog turd types. Those can leak.


I've seen trials bikes run them as well. Just make sure its not a huge hole all zig zagged. If its a smooth nail hole it should be fine. My last one was a huge construction screw. Rat tailed the hole smoother and plugged it.

I also ran one on a HD for almost 5K down there. I am sure some people wouldn't but I lived in the Corpus and Hill Country area and ran my bikes ragged. I always stomp the hell out of them, not easy on tires.

Just plug it good and run the hell out of it and see if it leaks. I've not seen a good plug leak. Piss poor ones, yep. Mostly due to people not following directions or an old kit where the glue was hard.

If you are paranoid, or packing heavy and can get another tire on before then, go for it. Best option overall, especially in that area. Thats a choice you will have to make on your own.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I used the heavy black rope type. I carry a 12volt pump and plug kit. If I would have used the mushroom type plug I wouldn't have any issue with running it. They patch and plug the hole. I need to order a kit. I'm monitory the air pressure on the tire. Soapy water test shows no leak. But it can still a seeping like that takes days to show any air lose.
 
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It all depends how big the nail was and where it punchered the tire.
All small nail might be ok.
If it were me I would change it the worst think is have a blow out doing any speed
 

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I also do not hesitate to plug a tire and run on it for the life of the tire. I don't even use mushroom type plugs. I just use the type of plugs that are sticky 4" lengths of "rope" installed from the outside of the tire. Done this only twice and ran them for thousands of miles without any problems.

G'day,

Vinish
 

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Run a bunch of tires with rope plugs. Only had one that might have started leaking after a plug job because the hole was so big. I was able to find a way around that also.
I do wet the rope strings with vulcanizing glue. Don't know if that helps but that is how I have always done it.

On the one occasion that might have leaked, I had a big hole a good 3/8" from a piece of shale that went through the tire while being stupidly silly on a dirt road with a HD. Tire was a 1 day old rear Bridgestone. I put in multiple strings (3 or 4) to get me to work and back (40 miles). It got me there and home. I'm sure I took it easy( speed limit). This happened 15 or more years ago memory isn't very good.

I'm not really sure it started leaking or not. It could have been that I was quite uneasy that the hole was so big I needed 3 or 4 strings which is at least as likely?
What I did then was dismount the tire. Cut the strings off on the inside of the tire flush with the tire inner liner. Then roughed up the inside of tire liner and apply a radial tire patch over the hole on the inside with vulcanizing cement per instructions. Then rolled it tight with the knurled tool that you use for this sort of repair. The plug then formed protection for the patch. Ran that tire till it was bald.
The bike that was on was not driven gently by any means and had about the same torque as my CC. There was then one stretch of road out in the middle of no where where I would most days see how fast the bike could go.

I'm not real comfortable plugging tires either but in my experience it seems to work fine. I've plugged probably a dozen, probably a lot more really if you count cars as well as motorcycles. Other than the one above that may or may not have actually leaked, I have never had an issue. Hope I have not jinxed myself by say that. (off to find some wood to knock on)
 

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I've repaired more automotive tires than I could possibly begin to estimate in 15 years slinging tires for a living. Of course, I have the luxury of pulling the tire off the wheel and using combination plug/patch, along with a buffing wheel and solvent, and vulcanizing cement. In those countless repairs, I've had two leak: one because it had already been improperly repaired by someone else one, the other because the injury was probably nearly 1" long in a jagged L shape, so a combo was not gonna fly. Both were for co-workers who thought I could maybe work some magic and they wouldn't have to buy a tire.

In that time, I've seen a goodly number of DIY repairs of various types. More often than not, they didn't hold. Might be the folks who did 'em maybe didn't quite know what they were doing. For myself, I'd use what I had to use to get the next town with a place I could buy a tire, but dependent on the injury and whether i could make sure a proper repair was done, I might give a repair a shot. Never needed to find out though, at least, not on a bike.
 

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Plugged numerous tires in my life, both car and bike. For the bike my preference is to remove and patch it when I get the opportunity. Also if it with in say aprox an inch or so of sidewall, you wont want to run that one to long due to the flex.
 

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i wouldn't trust my life on it that is for sure. your life worht less than a couple hundred bucks ?
 

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i wouldn't trust my life on it that is for sure. your life worht less than a couple hundred bucks ?
That is the standard answer that we usually hear when discussing worn tires or old tires or plugged tires. Unfortunately, I don't think it is as simple as this. This statement considers the severity of the risk but fails to consider probability of the risk. If a tire goes bad quickly (proverbial blow-out) while riding at high speeds, I agree that the consequences are likely to be very bad. I doubt too many people disagree with this. Where people are more likely to disagree is the probability of a patched/plugged tire leading to a blow-out. I consider the chance of this to be VERY low. Lower, for example, than being involved in a high speed accident in my car. Given this assignment of probability that I ascribe to, it would make more sense for me to avoid driving my car than driving on a plugged/patched tire.

What is missing from this entire argument is a true impartial, scientific, and accurate assessment of the probability of a blow-out when riding on a patched/plugged motorcycle tire. I don't have this data and no one else has offered this data. At best, I and others are offering or basing our opinion on our own experiences which are simply anecdotes. One of my favorite expressions is that "Proof is not the plural of anecdote." and this certainly applies here. I have no proof/data that the probability of blow-out is low and you have no proof/data that the probability is high.

Do you or anyone else have any actual data on the probability of plugged/patched bike tires suffering from a blow-out? I sure don't, unfortunately.

My discussion above certainly does not resolve anything. All it really does is transfer the discussion from how "risky" it is to ride on a plugged/patched tire to the more correct - what is the probability of having a blow-out on the same tire.

But to answer your question, I believe that the probability of blow-out is far less than plenty other risky activities in which I choose to engage - including simply riding a motorcycle to begin with. You believe the probability of blowout is high and hence will not ride on a patched/plugged tire. I don't agree with your assessment of the probability but I defend your right to have this opinion. Your bike, your life, your choices.

G'day,

Vinish
 

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We will not plug at all.

Rare occasions like someone on a long distance trip and has no choice, sign the waiver and good luck. If time allows it I would trust the patch more then a plug, but if your on the side of the road you cant really pull the tire off the wheel.
 

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I had occasion a while back to encounter a young Hispanic couple with a flat on a car. It was an easy plug job, so I offered him the use of my kit. :smile After he failed twice I offered to do it for him, but he insisted he knew how to plug a tire. :eek I doubt it lasted long. :frown If he had let me do it, it would easily have lasted the life of the tire.
So, if you do a crappy job plugging, don't plug. If you can do it well, no problem.:nerd
 
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