I have a Stop-and-Go kit and a Cycle pump. In a reverse Murphy's Law, after spending that much and being completely prepared, I haven't had any flat tires.
Whatever system you go with, be sure and try it out on a tire you're about to change, before you have to plug a tire on the side of the road. I had my front wheel over at a friend's house to replace the tire, a Metzler 880 (he has a changer). My plugger of choice is the DynaPlug, and another rider carries the Stop-N-Go. Doug has neither. Neither of us had actually used the kits. We dropped the wheel onto a drywall screw, pulled the screw out with a pair of pliers (how many of us carry pliers?) and then I attempted to plug it. In a couple of minutes I was through. The tire was filled to 45 PSI, no leaky. All of us tried the Stop-N-Go, none successful. We kept trying to ream the hole large enough with the supplied rasp. In spite of hearing the steel belts shredding, the reamer was worn dull before we could enlarge the hole enough. I'm sure the Stop-N-Go works on a lot of tire from the positive remarks so I'm not trying to start a discussion of which system is best.
I am also loosing faith in Stop and Go plugs. About a month ago I tested the system on a tire I was going to change (A Metzler M1 on a K1200s). I got it to work on my second try, and it held fine.
I then took the tire off using a Nomar changer to see how well the plug sealed on the inside. During tire removal the plug sheared off. I did not think that there was an excessive amount of force used to remove the tire and became a little concerned about integrity of the plugs during use.
I'm still going to pack the Stop and Go because I don't have any ride time with one of the plugs in place, but I am also going to carry the "Slimey String" type just in case.
Right-- 3 of the Co2 cartridges will only fill the newer bike (larger) tires to 10 psi or so. Just tossed mine out of my "E" kit, and wired my Wal-Mart comp to plug in where my GPS power plug ends. Cheaper than buying another BMW male plug.
Also took the comp apart and threw away the plastic shell--still works fine and packs much smaller.
I have also found that pulling off to the side of the road where debris winds up is usually when I pick up a nail, and bad stuff happens in 3's. I have already had my 3 for this 6 months.
2012 Triumph Tiger 800, Venom Yellow
1999 BMW R-1100 RT, Dark Green
2008 Suzuki DR650, Black
I just had my very first puncture to a motorcycle tire recently and while I was lucky that it leaked slowly enough not to be noticed until I tried to get the bike out of the garage yesterday, I found that TWO plugging kits failed to deliver results when I tried to plug the tire in the safety of my own garage.
The nail was 3mm in diameter. First I tried the BMW kit that's been floating around in the tool-tray for 11 years. This is one of the ones with the grey rubber pointed-oval-ring-shaped plugs. I found that even after a good thorough reaming of the hole and plenty of fresh cement to lubricate the insertion, the plugs sheared off the tool before penetrating much at all. Might be due to age though.
So then I tried the Progressive Suspension kit I bought a few years ago. It uses pointy plugs that go over the tip of the pointy insertion tool and have a band of some sort of sealing-material. This plug went in OK, and all seemed cool until I tried to inflate the tire- at that point if became apparent that the plug failed to seal. I tried to seal it by pushing in more with the instertion tool, and I think in doing this I stabbed through the plug as now the leak is worse.
The one part that makes all this not so bad is that the tire is due to be discarded anyway due to tread-wear.
"If you can't fix it with a hammer, it's electrical." -somebody's dad
Bob's BMW sells a Sparrow Mini-Compressor for $29.95 (2005 catalog), 5 1/2" tall, 4 1/2" wide, little over a pound with built in gauge, 11 1/2' power cord with on/off switch. Seems like a good price. Anybody tried it? As to plugs, I'm assuming Michelin Pilots are steel-belted, which means I should use the strings? Does Stop n Go have a kit with just strings or should I just go to an auto parts store and buy a kit? (Preparing for a cross-country in May.)
On the way back from Daytona a couple of weeks ago, I had a flat on the rear. Tried the Stop-n-Go plugger for the first time. Tire was a Metzler 880. The first plug held for about 50 miles, and was almost out of the tire when I stopped to check the air pressure. Second plug stayed in, but leaked, so I had to stop about every 75 miles and add air.
When I got home, I dismounted the tire and the mushroom heads of the plugs were rolling around inside the tire. Evidently cut by the steel belts in the tire.
I will now carry the conventional rope plugs.
"I dismounted the tire and the mushroom heads of the plugs were rolling around inside the tire"
That is what happened to me. Because I did not ride with them I didn't know how normal road use would effect them. I'm not sure if I'm happy or not knowing someone else had the same scenario. I guess its best to know and start carrying the string plugs.
what about tire pumps? any good for backup?
Ive always used the string plugs. The few times I've had a puncture they've worked really well (no leaks and worked on first try) and held out longer than I should have continued riding on them.
I had a front tire leakdown last year after putting a new one on, and I used the C02 cannisters (about 3) to get it pumped up to where I felt comfortable to ride on it to a gas station air pump. I'll be investing in a small pump of some kind this year before riding season really gets going though I wouldn't want to rely on the cannisters in a desolate place.
CyclePump to help me get home from Daytona.
It worked well. Took about 5 minutes to go from zero psi to 42psi. It will also fit in the tail section of my RT.