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"K13GT" Technical Q&A K1300GT- Technical Questions/Answers

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  #1  
Old 07-29-2018, 11:20 PM
Honolulu Honolulu is offline
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Slow leak, rear tire

The near-new PR4GT rear tire on my K1300GT that has developed a slow leak. The TPMS caught it, and I am definitely thankful for that system!

I took off the wheel and ran water over it, found no bubbles. I dunked it in a bucket of water, no bubbles there either. It loses about 10 pounds per day, which means having to pump it up daily. Though I have a compressor, dragging it out and doing this every morning when I'm dressed and about to be off to work isn't my cuppa. It isn't safe and until this is resolved there's no two-up riding with the wife.

Bike tires not having much volume, 10 pounds of pressure isn't a lot of air, which perhaps explains the lack of bubbles. Can't find anything stuck in the tread, valve stem seems not to be leaking. I don't think its the bead since it didn't leak for the last two months since I put the tire on. How am I to find the source of this leak? Any/all suggestions considered and thanks in advance.
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  #2  
Old 07-29-2018, 11:34 PM
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Re: Slow leak, rear tire

id use a sealant if its ok with the tpms.
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  #3  
Old 07-30-2018, 12:40 AM
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Re: Slow leak, rear tire

Recheck everything - 10 lbs. a day you should be able to find the leak. I would stick it back into a tub of water - let it sit there longer than normal - sooner or later the leak will show itself.
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  #4  
Old 07-30-2018, 12:56 AM
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Re: Slow leak, rear tire

Yup..valve stem might be the culprit. I had a slow leak on the nose skin of the RS awhile back. Sprayed the surface of the skin w/soapy H2O, nuth'n...removed the stem cap, spittle on the stem..no bubbles...???

It's gotta be leak'n from somewhere...nuth'n stuck in the skin...??? Hmmm?? no bubbles from the stem...Hmmm...get out the stem remover, check snugness...it's a bit loose...back it out a bit, then resnug, a bit tighter....air up...set overnight, check..all good!!

Strange it wasn't blowing bubbles when trying that trick, yet backing off & snugging fixed it!
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  #5  
Old 07-30-2018, 07:39 AM
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Re: Slow leak, rear tire

Perhaps the valve core only lets air escape when it's subject to centrifugal (centripedal?) force? Are you riding with a valve cap or commando?
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  #6  
Old 07-30-2018, 05:21 PM
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Re: Slow leak, rear tire

I started looking for a leak in my front tire. I noticed on a ride the front end did not feel right. Just cruising but stopped and looked. Tire looked ok, hit with a stick it gave an ok thud. I was not far from home and rode on. When I got home I checked the tire pressure and it was down 15 psi. I had checked the pressure two days prior and topped it off to 37 PSI. So Wheel off the bike, made a wooden trough , like with plastic and fill with water to cover rim so bead could be looked at. Filled the tire to 41PSI and started looking. Nothing after a long dip. I set the tire aside and the next day it was still holding.So thanks for the suggestions on valve stem, I think that could have been the problem and it reseated itself when I filled the tire. I will remove the core and reinstall it inflate. I will check it again tomorrow. It bugs me to have to waste a new 2k miles on a tire but had it leaked that is what would happen. I usually end up with the rear tire flat.
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  #7  
Old 07-31-2018, 12:13 PM
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Re: Slow leak, rear tire

I'll use a bottle of Windex or cheapo store brand glass cleaner to look for leaks. Have used the little "pocket size" bottle of glasses/visor cleaner on the road. It can easily be done ON the bike (or car) and will pinpoint even the tiniest leak by a patch of white foam, or big bubbles with a major leak. Can be used on the tread, valve stem, TPMS sensors, bead, everywhere. Cleans the wheel pretty well, too.

I have had intermittent leaks that would only leak when the tire was rolling or parked in a certain position where the hole was at the flex point (perimeter of the contact patch). That will drive you nuts.
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Old 08-01-2018, 02:35 PM
Honolulu Honolulu is offline
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Re: Slow leak, rear tire

FOUND THE LEAK

I set the tire on a sidewalk and put soapy water on one bead, then the other. No bubbles. I put a smear of soap on the nick in the tread where I pulled out several small (<2 mm) bits of glass. No bubbles.

Then I just happened to notice a bubbly area on the tread... GOTCHA. Fishing around in the groove on the near-new tire I heard a metal against metal scratch, and using needlenose pliers I fished out a bit of wire only about a millimeter in diameter. I'd never have seen it as it was deep in the groove, but the bubbles gave it away. So let's hear it for soapy water as a diagnostic method for leaking tires (full immersion should also have worked, had I a tub big enough).

The good news is that I found it. Now for the hard part: the first shop I called would take off the tire and put a $120 patch on it. I hate to buy a new tire over something so small, this price is outrageous. The cost of the patch is far out of line with the cost of labor, materials and equipment, but what should I expect from the local BMW dealer.

It turns out that a 10-psi per day loss, or less, is in fact quite visible when soapy water is smeared on the tire.

I like the Stop-n-Go 1000 patch kit, which inserts a rubber "mushroom". I've used the sticky fuzzy string patch kit on several cars, it's a hassle. My thinking is that with the stem of the mushroom style patch down in the tire groove, it won't tend to be dragged out by friction, or spit out as a result of pressure of flexing etc. Of course that thinking would also apply to the sticky string type patch also...
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  #9  
Old 08-01-2018, 02:50 PM
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Re: Slow leak, rear tire

At the recommendation of one of our members, Beech, who has lots of experience in the tire field, I bought this repair kit - about a year or so ago I got a small rear tire cut, and used this to fix it, planned on buying a new tire, but then forgot, and 4000 miles later, when I decided to buy the new tires, I remembered I had been riding around on a repaired tire for a year, these work! No leaks and I didn't even notice it, out of sight, out of mind, and triple digit speeds in the remote parts of CA are common and again, no issues. Give it a try. It won't work for sidewall repairs, but small holes in the tread, no problem. (Of course some here will say the only thing you can do is buy a new tire, I feel differently, up to you.)



source them from here, https://bestrestproducts.com/shop/cy...-kit-tubeless/

video here, https://youtu.be/bWeHwlQirOI?t=8
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  #10  
Old 08-01-2018, 03:08 PM
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Re: Slow leak, rear tire

Honolulu, I've been using the cheapo kits from wally world on tubeless bike and car tires for years (I think the trade name is "Slime" or something like that), a couple of the black sticky "strings" and a very small tube of cement in the 98 cent kit. I've found that the tubes of cement will quickly dry up after opening so I keep a few extra in the car, on the bike, and in the home kit and open a new tube every time. Somewhere along the way, I picked up a couple of very sturdy T-handle tools, a hole cleaner-outer, and an insertion tool for the "strings".

Also, I keep a pair of needle nose pliers in my kits for nail removal.

I have had problems with off-brand "string" plugs leaking thru the middle of the plug after a week or so of driving. The string was not impregnated 100% and air was escaping thru the middle of the string.
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  #11  
Old 08-01-2018, 05:02 PM
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Re: Slow leak, rear tire

I am still using the same little tube of Slime glue I opened 3 yrs ago.Trick is to squeeze all the air out before you close it.But that's for the ride on mower.2-3 flats a year on that thing.Acacias, thorny.

Small holes.....had my first flat on a bike in 30yrs recently.One T50 staple. Very little thread left on that tire so mounted a backup,wore through it in a week but by then my new tires had shown up.

Kid with the Busa a couple weeks ago?He got a string plug.No way I was dismounting his tire that day for a proper plug/patch repair.
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  #12  
Old 08-01-2018, 06:26 PM
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Re: Slow leak, rear tire

I used my Stop-n-Go plugger on a rear tire and ran it for 8,000 miles.
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  #13  
Old 08-02-2018, 10:46 PM
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Re: Slow leak, rear tire

I have a Stop & Go mushroom style kit incoming from Amazon, though another member has advised to use the type that looks like a giant thumbtack. That would require breaking at least one bead, better with the tire off the rim completely, which is a sh*tload of work that I'm reluctant to repeat. Nothing's perfect, certainly not me.

I've never heard of a biker getting in trouble from a blowout, though I imagine it can happen. I read the newspaper reports of biker fatalities hereabouts and they seem mainly to involve oncoming cars making left turns, biker losing control, or excessive enthusiasm (er, speed, same thing).

My stockbroker neighbor was complaining the other day about how few of us have adequate retirement savings. I stopped him and said that I have a plan that he can't touch, the stock market can't affect, even the President is unlikely to screw up. As you have not heard, I shall now proceed to relate (a little rip from Kipling): I. Keep. Riding. My. Motorcycle. It shut the neighbor right up, which was completely the intention. Now back to your/our regularly scheduled programming...
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  #14  
Old 08-03-2018, 07:14 AM
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Re: Slow leak, rear tire

The PO had installed a Battlax rear tire sometime before my purchase of the '00 K1200RS about a year ago. I ran the tire for another 9 months, plugged a leak, and finally just decided to change both tires when the front was down to the cord. When I pulled that Battlax it had FOUR plugs in it that were virtually invisible from the outside. All were the "string" type and apparently of different brands as they were all different sizes and colors.

I've plugged half inch long cuts, sidewall punctures, edge of tread punctures, steel belted radials, all the stuff they say can't be plugged. I've plugged tires on my car and not lost 10 psi. Never had much luck with "booting" tubeless tires even with very careful and thorough prep and giant "C" clamps.

Never understood taking a leaking tire to a shop. A $20 pump and $7 kit are more than paid for with the first leak, not to mention all the TIME saved.
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  #15  
Old 08-04-2018, 12:51 PM
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Re: Slow leak, rear tire

" Stop & Go mushroom style kit"
Return it.

Go with the string kits as found in any Walmart, Kmart or auto parts shop.

https://www.amazon.com/Bell-Automoti...nd+tire+repair

Even better:
https://bestrestproducts.com/shop/cy...-kit-tubeless/
Best rest stuff uses a solvent based vulcanizing product that makes those blue strings one with the tire.

The monkey stuff with rubber cement has worked for me plenty of times but the other is "better".
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  #16  
Old 08-04-2018, 01:38 PM
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Lightbulb Re: Slow leak, rear tire

Quote:
Originally Posted by Beech
The monkey stuff with rubber cement has worked for me plenty of times but the other is "better".

I've even used Shoe Goo with the repair "strings" with good success.
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Old 08-04-2018, 04:16 PM
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Re: Slow leak, rear tire

There are quite a few (100s)of them string type tire repair kits in the clearance department of my local hardware store.

$1.00 ea.CAD! I picked up a couple for the just in case unprepared riders.

BTW them strings come in two sizes and can be bought separately.Passenger car and truck/tractor.Got both under the seat on the bike.
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Old 08-06-2018, 07:04 PM
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Re: Slow leak, rear tire

Okay I'll bite, plus I crave knowledge.

I've used the sticky string patches maybe 3-4 times on car tires. The holes I've gotten have been small diameter so I've had to ream the hole a good deal to stick 'em in. It appears they're pretty much the same, composed of at felty or stringy gizmo that's impregnated with (something) and an agent which causes the "something" to change physically and chemically (vulcanize, cure, whatever). None of my few patches failed within the remaining life of the tire.

My concern is that on bike's relatively high torque condition at the tire/road interface, if the string is exposed, do I trust it not to pull out? Why are they better than a mushroom plug to seal the tire and keep it sealed?

Not trying to be argumentative, I still have my stickystring tools in the box (but need more of the solvent stuff)... just want to be made aware why that type is considered "better". Also, it's irksome that Amazon expects two weeks to deliver a simple thing like the mushroom kit. Fortunately my wife can drop me off at work this week.
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Old 08-06-2018, 07:27 PM
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Re: Slow leak, rear tire

The mushroom plugs need a larger hole. They use rubber cement like the strings but the strings have so much surface area and squish ability that they hold well. The mushroom plug is just rubber. I suggest you test them out on a dead tire. once installed push on it and see if it slips into the tire. They just don't give me or many others a good feeling of durability.
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Old 08-06-2018, 07:31 PM
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Re: Slow leak, rear tire

Quote:
Originally Posted by Honolulu
Okay I'll bite, plus I crave knowledge.

I've used the sticky string patches maybe 3-4 times on car tires. The holes I've gotten have been small diameter so I've had to ream the hole a good deal to stick 'em in. It appears they're pretty much the same, composed of at felty or stringy gizmo that's impregnated with (something) and an agent which causes the "something" to change physically and chemically (vulcanize, cure, whatever). None of my few patches failed within the remaining life of the tire.

My concern is that on bike's relatively high torque condition at the tire/road interface, if the string is exposed, do I trust it not to pull out? Why are they better than a mushroom plug to seal the tire and keep it sealed?

Not trying to be argumentative, I still have my stickystring tools in the box (but need more of the solvent stuff)... just want to be made aware why that type is considered "better". Also, it's irksome that Amazon expects two weeks to deliver a simple thing like the mushroom kit. Fortunately my wife can drop me off at work this week.

The tires today are, for the most part, steel belted. The mushroom plugs being relatively soft have been known to sometimes shear off and dislodge having been cut by the steel belts.

The "string" type made of a what I can best describe as rough cord are slathered in rubber cement and inserted and seem to work just fine.

My preference, having now used both, the "strings" offered by Best Rest Products are of a rubber material and the goo that is used with them is not rubber cement but a vulcanizing liquid that works in conjunction with the rubber "string" to make a more permanent seal. I've now used them on both car and motorcycle tires, and they just flat work. And I've seen triple digits on the bike with the plugged tire with no ill effects.

Why the string type solutions don't tend to shear off and the mushroom plug type has a reputation for doing so probably has to do with their different construction.
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Old 08-07-2018, 07:26 AM
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Re: Slow leak, rear tire

Quote:
Originally Posted by CJS350
... The "string" type made of a what I can best describe as rough cord are slathered in rubber cement and inserted and seem to work just fine.....
Ditto on the old fashioned string plugs. I've used two major brand mushroom plugs over the years and both failed! The string pugs are available everywhere, kinda like a Bic pen. Cheap but effective.
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Old 08-07-2018, 08:43 AM
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Re: Slow leak, rear tire

Nothing new with the mushroom plugs.They have been around as long as tubeless tires.

I was the tire monkey in my dad's shop back in the 70s.I fixed a lot of flats.70s were when radial tires became the standard.Radial tires:string plugs.

A more serious consideration could be:How long did one ride or drive on a deflated/low pressure tire? Doing so wil damage the belts and may cause delamination later.

I drove a few hundred feet from home on a flat.Turned around....mounted a spare.Then went to my local tire place for a FREE repair.Tire was trashed,you could see the broken cords from the inside.

Near new tire....prorated at 10% wear for warranty so didn't cost me much to replace.

BTW.....Canadian tire shop/chain,they don't seem worried about liability/litigation as found south of the border. They will repair motorcycle tires with a proper internal plug/patch.May not be free but sure as heck won't be $120.00usd.Only thing is that they won't dismount/remount the tire for you.
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Old 08-09-2018, 09:21 PM
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Re: Slow leak, rear tire

Yep, that's where the money is: breaking the bead and removing the tire from the rim. Getting the rim off the bike is almost trivial, and so is installing the patch, whatever is chosen, compared to getting the bead broken, clamping the far side tire beads together, and prying the bead over the edge of the rim.

I used a 10-foot section of 1.5 inch diameter galvanized steel pipe, plus a short wedge cut from a 2x4, to break the bead. Set one end under the wife's car at the jack point, with 275-pound little old me on the other end. It was just barely enough. Prying the beads over the edge of the rim, trying not to scuff and scratch it, took a good long time. All this had to repeat to get the new tire on. Fortunately the beads seated pretty quickly when I hooked up my little compressor. If I never have to do that again, it'll be too soon.

Well I broke down and got a sticky string refill kit. Gonna pull the nail, ream the hole, slather some glue on and jam it in! Then pump it up and get the bike back on two tires this weekend, after Hurricane Hector blows by - it's been a little rainy, just a little, these few days.
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Old 08-28-2018, 02:31 AM
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Re: Slow leak, rear tire

Hurrricane Hector went by, we hardly saw it.

Hurricane Lane was another matter, if you lived on Hawaii Island or on Maui. Here on Oahu it was several days of overcast and occasional drizzle. Got a day off on Friday, though, while it was still a Cat 3 hurricane and generally headed here. But it faded overnight, stalled, then turned west and AAA LLL OOO HHH AAA, don't come back. But Hurricane Mariam is forming the the eastern Pacific. Must be some sort of hellhole out there, forming Hurricanes all season. But I digress.

The sticky-string patch went in and didn't leak for a couple idle days, so I took up riding again. Alles gut, over and out.
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Old 09-21-2018, 11:23 PM
Honolulu Honolulu is offline
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Re: Slow leak, rear tire

Fri**en sticky string started leaking after a half-day ride with my wife. It was nice enough not to become noticeable until the next day (Monday morning on the way down the hill to work) when (again) the TPMS system lit up on the instrument cluster.

Bite the bullet, big boy... I bought a patch-from-inside kit, dismounted one tire bead, scrubbed/cleaned the area, glued and stuck the patch on with the stem through the tire. NOW IT BETTER NOT LEAK AGAIN EVER. I hate tire work.
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