Out for a nice Sunday cruise before the rainy weather hits, I was traveling along a busy street on my way to the dirt trails. Things were normal until I suddenly hit something in the road that felt like a big rock or piece of wood, but I never saw anything. Tire hopped a few times like running over multiple pieces of junk and it make a pretty nasty sound as something scraped against the rear fender a few tire turns and then disappeared.
Where this happened was not a place good for pulling over. I looked down at the wheel and it looked OK, so I continued.
After getting past the busy part of the road, I slowed down and looked at the tire again and it seemed fine, so I continued onto the dirt trail. About 1/4 mile later, I hear the flat tire sound, flop flop flop, so I stopped to check it out.
Nice nail head.
Taking the tube out of the tire while on the road is not a good option. It requires a tools that are too heavy to carry routinely, including a large wrench to loosen the rear axle nuts and a pair of tire levers made for motorcycles. Alternately, I carried a can of "Fix-A-Flat" for bicycles. I figured I would at least have a chance with this stuff and had success with it years ago. The moped tires are very stiff and thick compared to normal bike tires. Nearly puncture proof, but there's always Murphy's Law.
Unfortunately, I did not read the instructions before removing the nail. Big mistake. The nail was a full size framing nail which had gotten bent probably by hitting the swing arm as it went around, then was fully inserted by a few more turns of the wheel. It was hard to pull out.
Well, as you might expect, with a 4mm hole in the tire, the tire sealant just all ran out onto the ground and the tire did not even begin to inflate. Bummer.
Luckily, the moped tires are so stiff the bike was easy to walk even with the weight of the secondary battery on the rear rack. I even tried riding it and it went, but I was worried about damaging the side walls of the tires so went back to walking it. I think I could ride on a flat front as there is less weight on it.
I walked about 1/4 mile back to the pavement and called my wife for a van pickup. How embarrassing. I could have walked the thing all the way home, but it was about 3 miles and that would have taken about an hour.
I got a flat on the very same section of road about a year ago. I guess it's an area that never gets the street sweeper and there's a lot of contractor trucks driving along there.
"One test is worth a thousand opinions"