We’ve crossed a hundred miles. And all in all I’m delighted with the bike, which in this environment I really wasn’t expecting to be. I had serious questions about how useful it would be, but I was
wrong not as right as I usually am.
One small technical problem: A week or two ago the front tire went flat for no apparent reason (seriously the tube is still holding air) and unable to find any explanation I replaced the tube with my one-and-only spare. Apparently with fat tires it’s important to make sure you get the tire bead even on the wheel before fully inflating, which I don’t recall ever having any problem with on any conventional bike*. But after re-inflating the tire and replacing the wheel on the bike there was a definite bobbing sensation, and looking down as the front wheel rotated it wasn’t hard to see why: One part of the bead was seated more deeply than the rest.
So I took the front wheel off, which is very simple and easy (note to self: practice removing and replacing the rear wheel), deflated it, and fiddled with the bead until it appeared even all the way around. Took it out to the Jeep to inflate it with the Jeep’s air compressor because doing it with a hand pump is a really time-consuming and strenuous bore. Looks right now, we’ll see in the next couple of days whether it is right.
Big Brother, bless his heart, heard about the “mystery flat” and promptly sent me two more spare tubes.
I was just as happy to take the compressor out of the Jeep because then it was time for the next scheduled chore…
The bag in which I keep the Jeep kit is only two years old but recently the zipper has begun to fail. Last weekend it failed big-time and I ended up opening the bag by just ripping it open, pretty much obviating any possibility of getting it back together. Since the Jeep kit is important and often used – and in an extremely dusty environment – the situation called for immediate replacement.
I debated about getting the next bigger size bag, because this sort of thing can get out of hand and there’s only so much room in the back of the Jeep. But the old bag did kind of strain its seams a bit which might have caused the zipper failure. The new one is much taller but not much bigger around and will be fine – and maybe more long-lived – as long as I don’t find excuses to fill up the empty space.
*or any automotive tire for that matter, and I started out in a tire shop and have mounted many hundreds of tires. But these fat bike tires are a different breed of cat.