13 September 2011

It wasn’t far from Selçuk to Izmir. I’d estimated it would take about an hour.

And happy days. Today I went through a radar and didn’t get a fine. They were everywhere around Selçuk. I’d seen several while on the bus the last couple of days so was on alert. Just as well.

Not far out of Selçuk I joined the motorway only to have a warning light on the Family Truckster alert me to low rear tyre pressure. Luckily a petrol station was just ahead so I pulled over to put some air in.

On close inspection of the tyre I noticed a tiny leak in the repair I had made out east. I wasn’t surprised as I recalled it was a rather large and odd shaped hole and at the time I wondered if the repair would hold. I put another plug in and took out the sharp blade included in the kit to trim the excess. For some reason the blade seemed blunt. I’d only used it once before. I pressed harder and tried again only to realise I had it back to front, with the sharp edge now cutting into my right index finger.

There was a small amount of blood but at least it was a clean cut that will heal quickly. A bit of a nuisance all the same but I can assure you it was sharp. Funny how much better it did work when I turned it around the right way! I pumped the tyre up and was on my way again with an eye on the pressure monitor to see if any more air was escaping. Luckily it wasn’t.

Maybe I’ll get a new tyre in Izmir.

I arrived at the BMW dealer right on time and shortly afterwards the Family Truckster was in the workshop and they were checking it out. I enquired about the tyres. They had a set but for 600 euros I thought I’d give it a miss. I have now done 5,000 miles since they were put on in Poland. They seem to be holding up ok. Apart from the repair they still look good with plenty of tread remaining.

I know it’s a bit of a risk but I’ll see how much further I can get before I replace them. The problem is you need the same front and rear tyre (different sizes of course). They come as a set. Unless I can get another rear tyre exactly the same as the existing one I need to replace the front one also, even though it’s fine.

Fingers crossed I can get another 2-3,000 miles before replacing them. They will be cheaper in Europe also and I may be able to get one the same as I already have and defer buying a new front tyre.

I’ve already accepted that this decision may come back and bite me.

It didn’t take long to replace the rear brake pads. In fact it took longer to print the invoice than it took to complete the repair. Some problem with the computer I was told.

Anyway, these guys were great so I’m not going to complain. In particular, Semih (one of the car salesmen) was superb, responding to my emails promptly and acting as interpreter with the service department on my arrival. Thanks Semih, if I ever decide to move to Izmir I’ll come and see you when I’m in the market for a new car!

I was on the road again around 14:00. Not far now to my overnight stay. Hope I can remain fine free day on this 48th day of my Turkey motorcycle tour.