A friend knowing my interest in cycling gave me a wonderful present – an old-timey John Bull Repair Outfit. A slender, rectangular tin box full of all the items necessary to fix an old time flat tire.
|"For the man who wants the best"|
There are handy instructions printed on the inside of the tin lid and some are rather quaint. Like using an indelible pencil to mark the puncture with an L shape. Or cleaning the area to be repaired with a wet match. A wet match? Being a non-smoker, the supply of matches in my house consists of a packet of paper matches that I know are Canadian since they advertise a cigarette named “Export Eh?”.
|The French gives it away as being Canadian|
Looking at this thoughtful gift reminded me of some of the flats that I’ve experienced during my cycling adventures. Just a month ago both Roy and I developed flats which we attributed to riding our tires with 50 pounds of pressure on hot tarmac heated by 30C plus temperatures (90 plus).
|These guys make fixing a flat look like fun|
A few years ago, my faithful cycling companion had a tear in the sidewall of one of his tires and being the cheap guy he is, he refused to buy a new tire or even consider looking for a bike shop. During our trip, I recall stopping four times to fix his flats and when on the last day of our trip, his tire went flat for the fifth time, I gave him my spare tube which if I wasn’t so cheap, I might have given to him earlier in the trip.
|One of the five flats being repaired|
Perhaps I should see if I can find John Bull tires. On the back of the tin repair kit is a slogan that claims John Bull tires are so good that you probably won’t need the repair kit at all.