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Old 9 Sep 2011
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Fixing a puncture on a cruiser

While cruising around in Spain I had a puncture (rear) and luckily I was going through a town so a motorshop was quickly found and the repair was swift (changing the inner tube). As I plan to travel to more remote areas next time on this same bike it made me think on what to do if this happens again somewhere remote. The Kawasaki Vulcan is chain driven, has a rear drumbrake and no centerstand. I guess I could ease her on her side supported by whatever lays (or my soft luggagebags)around and get the wheel out. My biggest worry is getting the tyre over the rim to get to the inner tube, they are standard tyres though a little chunky. I´m looking for some advice on how to pull this off and which tools to use (leavers). Cheers, Rob Smits
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Old 9 Sep 2011
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Hi Rob,

As far as getting the tire off the rim, a picture is worth a thousand words. These videos show the technique:

Easy dirt bike tire change instructions - YouTube

Easy dirt bike tire change instructions part 2 - YouTube

Easy dirt bike tire change instructions part 3 - YouTube

Although your bike doesn't have a rim lock like the dirt bike in these videos, all the technique is the same. I prefer the MotionPro tire irons he is using. They have nice smooth spoon surfaces and are a dream to use.

When removing a rear tire on a bike lacking a center stand, rather than laying the bike on its side, it is possible to tilt the bike in the air using the side stand and front tire along with a sturdy prop to form a tripod that lifts the rear of the bike in the air. I use a stick, but there are actual products you can buy to lift the rear of the bike:

PackJack RS motorcycle prop stand - ADVrider

This tool avoids having to lay the bike on its side to get the rear tire off.

Of course it is always good to learn proper technique for lifting a 600 pound motorcycle off its side without straining your back in case you drop it out in the boonies. That will be tomorrows lesson.

Kindest regards,
John Downs
South America and back on a 250 Super Sherpa Minimalist Adventure http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=831076
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Old 9 Sep 2011
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I've never actually been stuck at the side of the road with my Harley, but I've changed the tyres enough times not to be worried about the possibility. First of all you can use slime (or something similar) to reduce the possibility of a puncture in the first place. I know a lot of people are against this, but I'm all for it. If you carry an electric pump you can often make it to a more suitable place to stop and repair a slow puncture. My bike will lay quite happily on the crash bars while I remove either wheel. Although my tyres are tubeless I carry a spare tube to fit if required as well as a tubeless repair kit. I would always aim to fit a new tube at the roadside and repair the old tube when more convenient. If a punctured tube's got slime in it I'd probably replace it with a new one a soon as I could. The hardest job at the road side would probably be breaking the bead if the tyre has to come off and you often just have to improvise, I've used all sorts including jacking a car up on top of the tyre (after suitably protecting the vulnerable parts). You can also try riding the bike a short distance with a flat tyre until the bead breaks.
Practise changing your own tyres at home before you leave.
Grant and Susan's DVD on tyre changing is a wealth of useful information even if you think you know it all. (Like I did before I was given it!)
If you think you are too small to make a difference you have never spent the night with a mosquito.
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Old 12 Sep 2011
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Thanks to both Mustaphapint and John Downs for the information. I'll have a go here at home on the driveway to see if I can pull this off. It doesn't look too hard it is just that once changing a tyre on a scooter one of the leavers broke free and hit me in the face and I don't want this to happen with those big motorcycle leavers!

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