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'18 KLR 650
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
First time replacing an inner tube on a motorcycle. I found the hole in the inner tube, but haven't been able to find the source of the puncture. The outside of the tire looks good, so I was expecting something to show up on the inside the tire, but looking it over, everything appears normal?

Is it wise to put a new tube in there without having found what caused it? 馃槄
 

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'08 KLR
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If you've looked closely at both the inside and outside of the tire and can find co evidence of a puncture scar - which can be hard to see as it'll sort o 'self heal' if the puncturing object is removed, or falls out on its own - I'd put my money on a small chunk of shop floor gravel that's been in there since the tire was mounted and finally did its dirty work. Make sure the tire is well blown out with compressed air then run the knuckle side of your fingers back and forth at the bottom to be sure. Powder liberally with talcum powder - it's probably not necessary, but I like to roll the tire while brushing it up the inside of the sidewalls and brush some on the tube, also.
 

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Take a cleanish shop rag and slide it around in there. Itll catch on anything that might be pokey.
Yep - It's really hard to examine the inside of the tire, but I'll bet that there's something embedded in the tire that will make your next tube go flat. Using the shop rag (or your hand) you should be able to find it by touch. I'd once picked up a thorn that was practically invisible, but you could feel it pretty easily. Good luck!
 

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One time I pinched a tube installing a tire but not hard enough to actually puncture the tube but it did damage the tube and it went flat about 100 miles later. I could tell it was a pinch flat because of the shape and size of the hole. How big is the hole in yours?
 

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'18 KLR 650
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Here's a photo of the offending puncture. About the size of hole I'd expect from a pushpin. What's up with all the creases?
Automotive tire Synthetic rubber Tread Sleeve Tire

I felt around the inside of the tire, barehanded, but did not feel any pokey bits. After a liberal application of talcum powder, I installed the new tube, and it seems to be holding air. I'll keep an eye on it though.
 

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Is it a front or a rear tire and is it the right sized tube? You can use a front tube in the rear in a pinch (pun intended), but it will fold and show creases like that and fail.
 

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The creases are what caused your deflation. The tube folded over, vibrated constantly as you rode and begat that hole.
Talcum powder in the tire and on the tube can help reduce that. When i swap tires, I leave the valve core out and rapidly inflate/deflate the tube 2 or 3 times. My 'hope' that it lets the tube move around some and get settled in. Then i install the core and set the bead, set the pressure.
 

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The creases are what caused your deflation. The tube folded over, vibrated constantly as you rode and begat that hole.
Talcum powder in the tire and on the tube can help reduce that. When i swap tires, I leave the valve core out and rapidly inflate/deflate the tube 2 or 3 times. My 'hope' that it lets the tube move around some and get settled in. Then i install the core and set the bead, set the pressure.
that right there is some good advice!
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
This was on the front tire. The inner tube is a Dunlop 90/90 80/100-21, which I'd guess is the OEM tube? Tires front and back are Dunlop K750's, which I believe are the stock tires?

@StevenE, what is your procedure for setting the bead?
 

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I put some soapy water on the rim amd edge of tire. Add air til it sets. If its warm enough itll pop on easy. If not it might take a while. I wouldnt reccomend it but i sometimes do run it up to 50 or 60 psi. BEWARE. Most times i only take it to 30 to 40 psi and just leave it alone to go do something else. After a few minutes itll slip in place. I got a spit of that tire lube stuff from a friend. It works well too. And isnt quite as messy as the soapy water.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Does the front tire set with an audible POP? I aired it up to 30ish PSI and the tire looked to have a uniform reveal around the rim. No popping, but I did use a good amount of soapy water.

First time changing a tube on a motorcycle, plenty to learn!
 

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If you see the edge of the bead and it is even all the way around, youre good. It seems the front doesnt usually pop in but i have heard the rear pop in a few times.
 

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KLRs: 2013, 2005, 1998; 2017 HD Electraglide Ultra
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My experience is the same as StevenE. Sometimes they pop, usually the rear; sometimes they don鈥檛, usually the front. It also depends on the brand.
 

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Those creases are a sign that the tube was still folded on itself after being installed - as others indicated, these folds significantly increase the failure rate due to the concentration of stresses along the crease lines.

Not a foolproof remedy, but the technique I use is to install the new tube with enough air to be partially inflated (round but not tight). Then after the tire is mounted onto the rim, fill the tire to about 30 psi, then pull the valve stem core to fully deflate. Then refill tire a second time to 30 psi, and let deflate. Finally, re-install the valve stem core, and inflate to proper tire pressure. Bit of extra work, but FLAT TIRES SUCK.

Taking a couple passes at filling and deflating helps get the kinks and folds out. Been a very long time since I had a flat from folded tire or even saw a fold/crease pattern on a tube.

Still get the occasional flat from nails and screws, but ...
 
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