Sunday, 22 May 2011
In a recent post Thank You, Firestone Pauline mentioned the number of punctures that she has travelling on metaled (gravel) roads in New Zealand. I have travelled over metaled roads and been remarkably fortunate but I was also with Pauline when she was about to take me to the airport and we discovered that one of her tyres had been completely flattened by a puncture. Pauline's car carries a space-saving wheel which limits your speed but is quick and easy to use.
When I arrived back in Scotland and Pauline wrote that post it made me think. My car here doesn't have a spare wheel. Strictly, therefore, I understand that it is not road legal in France where I travel. I imagine that there are a great many UK cars similarly breaking French law. I've had the Nighthawk for about - no, actually I've just looked it up - I bought it on the 28 May 2004 - and I've had it for 7 years. Odd really because I still think of it as a new car. I must get an MOT this week too.
Anyway as I was saying, the Nighthawk has a kit which injects stuff into the tyre in the event of a puncture. I've never had to use it. I've never had a puncture in those 7 years. But Pauline made me think and I bought a space-saver wheel. Not ideal but as the 'proper' wheel is hugely wide it would be a very tight fit in the allocated space. There are limitations on the speed but it was only when I removed the supplied kit that I discovered that it has even more severe limitations. It can be used at a max speed of 80kph/50mph. If, however, I read the instructions correctly the car can only be driven for 10 minutes once the kit has been used. Really? Anyway reading various blogs on the subject it seems that even if you manage to get the tyre inflated with the gunge it is unlikely to be repairable once so filled.
I think I've done the correct thing! No more kits for me when I buy another car. They can give me a proper wheel or lose the sale. If I ever buy another car that is.