Monday, November 06, 2006

How I spent a week of sick days

Aside from actually being sick, that is, which I was (and still am).


Decided I should try to get my bike (1997 Kawasaki ZX-6) running again. Last season about this time I developed a slow leak in the new rear tire and decided to park it. Washed bike. Battery dead. Put on charger.


Battery shows some signs of life, but only 12.2 V. Replace battery ($50).


Bike starts, runs, despite the old gas. Added some Gumout (50 ml) to the tank. Inflated rear tire. Went for a short (6 mi) ride, and it seems to hold pressure.


Rear tire flat. Found out why after about 10 seconds of inspection: 2 inch long piece of metal (aluminum roofing staple, perhaps) embedded in tread. After about 30 minutes of poking and prodding, it comes out. Air soon follows. Added 8 oz of Slime, which seems to seal it.


Tire still holding pressure. Take a short test ride. After less than one mile, a hornet stings me on the neck near the windpipe around the top of my jacket's zipper. Return home for meds. Ride for about 5 miles. Rear tire is flat. Decide to give up on patching and order new rear tire. Discover tire (Dunlop D205) is no longer in production, replaced with D220, so I have to order a new front tire as well.


Ordered new tires; total cost about $210 from Mount and balance will be about another $70; must remember to insist on new valve stems this time.

Update: Tuesday

One of the new tires is back-ordered. Guess which one? Yes, the rear, the one I really need. ETA: 2 weeks. And the front has already shipped. Sigh.

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