Crash and Burn

This Sunday we were ridding on fire trails where you can reach speeds of 70mph if you wanted to. There are a few ruts but mostly smooth ATV tracks. As I put on my goggles and prepared to ride one of my faster ridding friends came over to me and said his front tire was out of air. Although this is my first complete year of dirt ridding I have paid attention to my friends and fellow TT,s and am considered the person who has anything you might need in the way of a tool or a spare part. I even have a few 2 stroke plugs in my box. Even though I would consider myself a poor mechanic I always maintain my bike before a ride. A couple of great guys I ride with are certified mechanics and they never touch their bikes until they break. So, I said to my mechanic buddy yes you can use my air compressor. He filled his tire up. Now for me personally I always adjust and check my tire pressure with a separate tire gauge not the piece of junk gauge that is on the cheap air compressor I own. Anyway he is one of our fastest riders. We were doing about 50mph, I was in the middle and the guy I am talking about was behind me. He passed me about 60MPH and as he did he went into a rut with rocks in it and had a tremendous crash. His flack jacket was ripped off on both sides at the shoulder hinge points and his helmet had a chuck out of it the size of a half-dollar. Of course he was skinned up everywhere. We took him to the hospital Immediately where he was discharged today and he still has his memory loss. He will be OK. As I pondered how a very good rider who has raced motocross could have such a crash I remembered the air fill and we checked his tire. When we put the gauge on the tire we lost a pound or two and still measured 20psi. I would think he would have been running about 22psi on a tire made to inflate to 15psi maximum. It would seem to me this could contribute to or caused the crash. I think I will continue to pre-ride check my bike.

[ September 23, 2002, 09:16 AM: Message edited by: levy1 ]

I always, always, always check my tire pressure before I go out roostin`.... too much air... stiff ride and poor hook up.... too soft your asking for a flat and/or bent rim... it only takes a minute.

my .02¢

As with my recent encounter with carnage, something on the bike was a major contributor. I swear I will ALWAYS check my bike over with scrutiny before I ride from now on. From rebound clickers to tire pressure. You cant be too careful.

OUCH...60mph? Thats gotta hurt!

It is important, and you can get gauges that are accurate and suitable for lower pressures...

I have a digital one, as well as springing the dollars for the Snap-on one (# YA343) with max reading of 30lb's... it is accurate and well calibrated, with easy to read increments. It is an essential part of my toolbox... It is no good even for cars, the pressure in a car tyre would blow the gauge out...

I don't think that the extra air in his tyre was the sole reason he crashed... it would have been a hard tyre in sand or loose stuff, but I doubt it would have been the cause - sounds more like the ruts and general terrain conditions got him... Hope he's OK...


[ September 29, 2002, 11:53 PM: Message edited by: yamaha.dude ]

He is OK and back to work. As for me after seeing the crash I am buying a Dampner.

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