Low Census

The Adventurer, Vernon Wade

Vernon was born in the Pacific Northwest and still lives in the shadow of Mt. Hood, near the small town where he grew up. Vernon has spent decades wandering the hills, hunting mushrooms, camping and riding motorcycles into the remotest nooks and crannies to be found in the region.

The doctors took the day off so they sent me home. It was warm out; it seemed like a good day to change my tires. The front tire was still good, so I left it alone. The rear bike tire was badly worn and the sidecar tire was bald, so I devoted my attention to replacing them. I was able to break the bead on my rear tire with almost no effort at all. It made me suspicious. Too easy – what’s going to go wrong? As it turned out, nothing went wrong. I was able to change the rear  and sidecar tires and get the wheels back on with no issues at all.





Halfway there







I deflated the tires and let them sit in the sun for a couple of hours, along wth my new treads. The rubber warmed and became flexible, making it relatively easy to free both beads from the rim and force them into the central channel to gain some slack. From there, using dish soap and a kettle of hot water for lubrication, it was only a matter of prising one side of the tire over the edge, leap-frogging three tire irons around the wheel. With one side free, I removed the inner tube and forced the opposite side over and off. To replace the old tube and tire with the new, I simply reversed the process.




I did have a moment with the sidecar wheel. The valve stem was stuck to the rim with corrosion and I destroyed the old tube when removing it. Not a big problem, as I was replacing the tube as well as the tire. I dressed the hole in the rim with a rat-tail file and sprayed it with WD- 40 hoping to avoid this issue next time.









Tires replaced and ready to go!


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