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This is why I got a PX, revision C, part 2

September 15, 2007

I’m guessing you want to know how things turned out with the tire. Even if you don’t, I’m going to tell you anyway.

I brought the PX to Big People for its 9,000-mile service (which once again slipped, in this case to about 9,300 miles), and said while you’re at it, sell me a new tire. The one that went flat was pretty much worn out, so it needed to be replaced. I thought about switching to Continental Zippy 3s, but they didn’t have any in stock, and I needed to get this done now, since I’ll be riding to Tri-Cities very soon. Let’s go with another Michelin S83, I say.

The jack replacement issue has at least been partially resolved. You’ll recall from the video that the can the guy uses just barely lifts the rear wheel off the ground. Okay if you have a smooth, level surface like the floor of the garage in which the video was shot, but if you can get the rear wheel about two inches off the ground, it’s much easier to get the tire off and back on.

I therefore went to the Sand Point Metropolitan Market in search of something–anything–in a can that was more than five inches tall, the space between the ground and the lowest point of the engine/transmission case.

I found lots of 5-inch-tall cans, but nothing taller. Until I got to the cold drink aisle. Hmm, a big can of Red Bull is 6 3/8 inches tall. But it’s made of aluminum, and very thin aluminum at that. Would it be able to support the weight of the PX?

Well, I guess I could spend $2.79 to find out. I was thirsty.

Actually it was $3.04, because Red Bull is not considered food, and therefore is subject to sales tax in Washington. I force the stuff down, but not too quickly. Not only does Red Bull not give me one iota of energy, to me it tastes like nauseatingly sweet ginger ale with a stick of chalk ground up in it.

The can’s empty, let’s try to lift the bike.

I have to lift the rear up fairly high. High enough, in fact, that the bike rolls forward and off its center stand. Luckily, I have a good grip on the rear rack and can hold it upright as I position myself to hop on the seat. I never did get the can, which got quite wrinkled, under the transmisson case.

The Red Bull can might work if you have a buddy to hang onto the bike while you slip the can in place. But I will probably be making the Tri-Cities trip solo, so I’ll have to think of something else. John Rana of Who Rides a Vespa? used a can of Del Monte fruit drink, but Del Monte doesn’t sell such things in the U.S.

Maybe Uwajimaya has it. Favicon

  1. September 17, 2007 6:29 am

    How about raising your PX with one of those bed risers sold this time of year so kids living in dorms can raise their beds another 5-6″ off the floor for extra storage. I’ve seen them at Target, Bed Bath and Beyond and Big Lots. Of course you’ll be stuck with 3 extra and they are kind of big. But hollow so you can pack other stuff in it. And if it works you have 3 others to sell and get more than your money back.

  2. September 17, 2007 7:23 pm

    An interesting idea, but unfortunately they’re either too short to raise the bike, or too tall to do myself… remember, the 6+” Red Bull can would only fit if the bike was raised so far it rolled forward. I need to be able to accomplish this task on some desolate stretch of SR 410, which has very little traffic, by myself.

    I’m going to Uwajimaya to see if they have any of that Phillipine Del Monte fruit juice…

  3. September 18, 2007 6:55 am

    Guess you’ll just have to rely on a gremlin bell and the luck of the O’Neill’s then! My GT odo rolled over 5200 this morning and our “deathtrap on wheels” Nissan rolled 230000 this weekend.

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