Motorcycle Forum banner

1 - 20 of 26 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
39 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Ok, here's one for ya!

I was in London last night on my way home to Birmingham, about 130 miles. And then it happened, just started my journey and I get a puncture in my brand new Avon, only been on a week. Anyway, found the culprit, bloody big nail almost dead centre of the tyre. Time is about 7.30 pm, so all bike tyre fitters have left work and shut up shop. Really long story made short, 3 hours later I find myself in an all night car tyre fitters yard. No bike tyres says the group of Polish guys who run the place, then the one had an idea.......... "We could plug it" he says.

Now I have never heard of this, so any port in a storm I said give it a go. They do this on car tyres a lot apparently and very successfully, or so I'm told. The guy gets what I can only describe as a very big needle with a "T" piece at the one end and a hole passing through the needle at the other. He gets a long piece of fairly thick rubber "string" and passes it through the hole in the needle until it' about halfway through. Then removes the nail from the tyre and sets the rubber "string" alight. While still lit, he pushed the needle and rubber into the hole, twisted the "T" piece and pulled the needle out but leaving the flaming rubber in the hole of the tyre. The air escaping the hole ceased immediately. He blew the flames out, cut off the string exposed from the tyre off, and charged me £10. This apparently is known as "plugging".

I drove the 130 miles or so, carefully at first but increasing speed as confidence grew, without problems with handling and the tyre to my knowledge is still inflated.

So, my question...... Is this safe?? Or should I get a new tyre which I can I'll afford, but on a safety level if I need it then so be it.

Sorry if I bored you to death if you know this procedure, but I have never even heard of this before. Your advise would be much appreciated.
 

·
Troublemaker
Joined
·
2,520 Posts
It's a common practice here. Half the people say it's dangerous and the other half have thousands of miles on plugged tires. I myself had a nail in a brand new tire, less than 500 miles on it. I plugged it in my driveway and put another 8,500 miles on it without a problem. If done right, they will last the life of the tire, in my opinion of course.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
39 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for responding Luvs2Play. Well to be honest, when he had finished I could barely see where the hole had been. Be it on straight roads, bends or corners, the tyre felt fine to me. Got to be honest, unless someone gives a good reason, I'm tempted to leave it in and see now it goes.
 

·
Troublemaker
Joined
·
2,520 Posts
Leave it in and for the first few days of riding, check the air pressure. If it drops any, there is a chance it is leaking. I have never had one leak on a bike, and over the years, I have had quite a few.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
39 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Leave it in and for the first few days of riding, check the air pressure. If it drops any, there is a chance it is leaking. I have never had one leak on a bike, and over the years, I have had quite a few.
Thanks again. I'll keep you posted. If it's going to go wrong I'm figuring it will be on my bike. Just having that sort of year I guess haha. Oh well, back to :coffee:
 

·
Troublemaker
Joined
·
2,520 Posts
Need to go out and ride so you can test your plug and post up some pictures of where you live. I spent 6 years in Germany, but was young and foolish and never tried to see anything else.
 

·
American Legion Rider
Joined
·
20,005 Posts
Since you really had no other choice, and the fact it's a new tire, I think I would continue using it but keep an very close eye on it. Like mark the sidewall so you know right where it is and check often.

That kind of plug is not really recommended for high speed repairs though. They are for low speed like lawn mower tires or emergency only. The proper repair would have been a plug and patch combo like this. I had to use one on a new tire with less than 100 miles on it and that tire went the full useful life of the tire all at any speed I wanted.

 

·
Swamp Rat Rider
Joined
·
1,867 Posts
being a Holiday Weekend and hardly any Shops open.. I have rode home almost 500 miles on a plugged tire that seemed to be fine but got a little nervous after got home and ended up replacing it .. The way I like to ride just didn't seem a good idea to have any worry in the back of my head what would happen if the tire let go when moving at 80MPH on some questionable roads ..
 

·
Troublemaker
Joined
·
2,520 Posts
No motorcycle shop that I know of in Nebraska will fix a motorcycle tire. They will only sell a new one. That is the reason I plug them, have never had a problem with them at any speed.
 

·
Charlie Tango Xray
Joined
·
763 Posts
I have never seen a business that would plug a motorcycle tire. But I have talked a guy at a gas station into letting me use his plug kit to do it myself, just so I could get back home. He did his best Sargent Schultz imitation, "I SAW NOTHING!"
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
64 Posts
I think that it would probably be OK however, I am absolutely paranoid about tyres and I would definitely change it as soon as you can especially given the types of roads over here.
 

·
American Legion Rider
Joined
·
20,005 Posts
Since it's tubeless you can cut and grind the plug smooth on the inside, put a patch over it and install a tube. You will be just fine then. At least you could get the life out of it then go back to tubeless again.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
39 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
Hi all and thanks for all the advise. Well after the plug was done, as I said, I travelled cautiously at first but increased speed as confidence grew. I ended up doing the usual 70 -80 mph and it felt fine. Went out to the bike today, still inflated same pressure that was put in when repaired. One thing, I can no longer tell where the puncture was, been all over the tyre, no sign. Strange! Anyway, going to keep an eye on the pressure as suggested, but I have to be honest, I think it's an ok repair. Time will tell I guess. :coffee:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
39 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
LMAO. well if the tyre was even halfway through it's life, it wouldn't have been too bad, but it had done about 250 maybe 300 miles. The thought of scrapping it for a clean hole mid tyre kinda made me cry to be honest. :biggrin: :coffee: :71baldboy:
 

·
Very Famous Person
Joined
·
9,809 Posts
--

I have yet to plug a mc tire, but I've plugged ATV and Jeep and truck tires over the years using the plug that looks like a piece of string beef jerky and some rubber cement. I have never had one leak or come out or reduce the normal wear time on the vehicle. On occasion I've used three strands at a time for a single plug.

As to thinking that high speed will throw the plugs out--well, I can't see that happening.

One thing I do is carry a small jar of rubber cement along with my repair kit as the little tubes that come with them seem to dry up real easily.

For disclosure: I'm also a Darksider, so I live on the wild side. :biggrin:

--
 

·
Pale Rider
Joined
·
528 Posts
All of the magazine writers, and all of the shop owners, will say the same thing: "Plug for emergency repairs only, replace the tire as soon as possible." Their point is that you only have two tires, and you rely on the tires' entire tread, as well as the sidewall flexture to be within specification, at all times. Translation into English: it is just safer to replace the tire, because if it fails, it could kill, or maim you (read, "vegetable"), or someone else.

In the end, it is your personal choice, as well as your personal liability. What are you comfortable with?... Cheers!
:coffee:
 

·
Very Famous Person
Joined
·
9,809 Posts
All of the magazine writers, and all of the shop owners, will say the same thing: "Plug for emergency repairs only, replace the tire as soon as possible." Their point is that you only have two tires, and you rely on the tires' entire tread, as well as the sidewall flexture to be within specification, at all times. Translation into English: it is just safer to replace the tire, because if it fails, it could kill, or maim you (read, "vegetable"), or someone else.

In the end, it is your personal choice, as well as your personal liability. What are you comfortable with?... Cheers!
:coffee:
--

Of course they all say to replace, not repair. They don't want to get sued if one person sees a way to use their words to get money, justified or not. So that means nothing in my book. We patch many things in our life with repair material that works fine.

--
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
39 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
You both raise good points lol. To be be fair sgtslag. I have to agree with RonK, it's the safe option for all concerned to say change it. If the plug was near the wall or on the wall of a tyre, I would change it without question, but to be centre tyre, I have no problem with chugging around on the tyre.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,003 Posts
Ok, I have to ask because I'm curious and like to learn different things. Here in the U.S. we spell Tyre as Tire. Is Tyre the way they spell it in the UK? I find it interesting how different countries spell the same word differently. This is the first time I have seen this spelling so I have to ask. Sorry if it sounds stupid.
 
1 - 20 of 26 Posts
Top