||LinkBack||Thread Tools||Display Modes|
Well today I finally got my education in the intricacies of towing a Cobra home with a ruined rear passenger side tire.
The number 1 most important thing above all else is getting a great tow truck driver. Danny really took the time and never got impatient about anything. Note to self: contact towing company tomorrow and let the owner know what a great guy he's got working for him.
We ended up using two 4 x 4 x 48 pieces of lumber he had on the truck to extend the bed on the Low Boy. He also let me drive the front of the roadster partway up the flatbed to get a good angle for hooking up his cable and not damage the body. Even still we barely made it on to the truck without dragging the rear quick jacks on the ground. I was able to pull up the rear of the car up just enough as he pulled it up on the bed. I just looked at the photo again - I will be cutting down the rear quick jack stand offs to tuck them in closer to the body. Might help.
My tire failure is a complete mystery to me. We were on the 405 freeway and had just transitioned onto the 101 freeway when my car started tracking funny. Brand new asphalt so I though for a second it was due to the new asphalt but it quickly got worse so we limped it to the first off ramp. No shoulder on this section of freeway. By the time we came to a stop the tire was ruined. Fortunately no visible wheel damage but what became instantly obvious was that my wheel stem is missing. I just finished cleaning everything and I checked the tire for any nails or screws and there is none. The only way the tire could have gone flat this quickly is from the missing valve stem. The tires are barely 2 year old Nitto NT555 with 1100 miles on the roadster.
Has anyone ever seen a wheel throw a valve stem? The tow driver says he has never seen this. Even on tires that come completely apart where it was driven on the rim he says the stem stays in place.
Are these the FFR rims ????
If so, a while back, I remember some reports that the FFR rims did not like certain valve stems, and that it took a "special" stem to fit the wheels correctly. I wish that I had some concrete info to pass on, but be sure to check the other stems to see if there are any signs of future problems.
EDIT: I did find these threads
Metal stems don't blow out.
Last edited by Derald Rice; 07-10-2017 at 02:09 AM.
Instead of being part of the problem, be part of a successful solution.
Drink me handsome and take me home....Bartender, I'd like to buy the little lady a drink...better make it a double.
When you take tire off the rim, see if the inner/fat part of the stem is in there (came apart), or if the whole stem blew out.
FFR 5353K, 408W, TKO 500, 2015 IRS w/ 315 gear, Breeze QA1 DA coilovers front and rear, APE hardtop, Forte front swaybar
To add insult to injury they no longer have the Nitto NT555 available and the new NT555G2 has a different tread design/performance spec. I get to now purchase a new set of rear tires to replace the set that only had 1100 easy break in miles.
I guess I should count my blessings and give thanks that I am safe and the roadster is undamaged. Not sure that there is a lesson in this.
Just a thought, not sure what your driving habits are like, but maybe this is an opportunity to upgrade to the NT05 or NT01?
I only have 3500 miles in three years on my Kumho XS tires, but their nearing their end of life on age. I will likely change them next year and I will closely look at the manufacture date for the new donuts. Turns out, my rear tires were already 5 years old when the tires were mounted and the front 2 years yet both were bought within 6 months of mounting them. For me, this redefines what "new" means, I would like to see a definition from the dealer. If tires are end of life at 10 years no matter what, then they should discount them prorated for every year they sit on the shelf IMO.
Last edited by Alan_C; 07-11-2017 at 05:50 PM.
Contacting customer service is a joke. I did not realize America's Tire is Discount Tire. I am going to work my way up the ladder primarily because of how poorly they are handling it. So far it's been impossible to speak with a "manager". Nothing more than a big box store.
The cause is a combination of issues.
The stem that caused my flat broke in two. Only the mushroom head remained in the tire but from there the Manager at Americas Tire was able to confirm that it was a Chinese stem which apparently should not be used.
The second stem upon inspection was going to fail soon as well. This was due to incorrect installation. Installation in the Factory Five wheels require extra attention. I am not the first to experience this and the response I received from my call to Factory Five is the same I found from another tech on a different thread.
The problem with the Factory Five wheels is that due to the lip thickness a recess is designed into the wheel to allow the stem to sit deeper in the lip so that the remaining thickness allows for a proper seat. The problem is that the recess in the rim is not wide enough. When the installer tries to install the stem in their normal fashion the mushroom portion tends to not seat properly. In fact, in my case part of the mushroom was pulled into the smaller opening creating a stress point.
For our wheels the installer needs to used the correct stem but also use plenty of lube during installation. It is also important for him to massage the mushroom head into the recess and make sure that it is properly seated. He may have to twist/rotate the stem to make sure that it is not partially pulled through the smaller opening.
At home I highly recommend that you gently pull the stem back and forth and inspect for any cracks and to see that it is actually seated properly. It is a really cheap fix compared to replacing tires and a tow.
This is the correct stem and also a picture of my wheel recess. I am also a bit concerned by how rough the opening is but I was told by Factory Five that this is normal.
The metal studs that were available at Americas Tire will not work. As is the problem with the rubber stems, the recess is not wide enough and will not let the metal stud seat properly.
I believe the recess in the wheels is the same today as it was when I got my kit back in 2011. The other thread linked earlier references issues with 18" Factory Five wheels which I believe were introduced last year.
Never had an issue with them, though my rears did both go flat on my Tail of the Dragon trip. Noticed it before I got on the road thankfully. Pumped back up, still at good pressure many many months later.
Speaking of which I notice that reported issues to date seem to revolve around the 17" and 18" wheels. Are the 15" ones not affected? That would be nice if true!
FFR Mk3.1 #6720. Carb'd 302. Fun.
Things to look out for. Had I paid attention I would have easily identified these deficiencies.
Notice that it is not fully seated.
Also, Notice that there is a crack in the rubber.
The manager almost sheared this one while gently inspecting it after the picture was taken.
The manager at the local store accepted responsibility for the rear tire failure and due to the fact that they could not get a Nitto NT 555 they replaced the pair. I opted to go ahead and purchase a set of fronts to match at a fair price.
Just as an FYI and to reiterate what I stated earlier - I had one stem that failed completely and the remaining three were improperly installed. I can't emphasize enough that direction needs to be shared with your tire shop concerning our wheels.
I took the Nitto NT555 G2's out today for a 60 mile cruise and they do drive better than my older set. One thing to note is that the tires are definitely a bit narrower than my previous set of same size tires.
I can see in the photos that your quick jacks hang lower than mine. I use the FF supplied steel plates and had them powder coasted. Because of where the holes are in those plates they sit about 2 inches higher.
My FF wheels were some of the first off that really sssslllllooooowwww boat from China, they didn't come with stems. Sounds like that is a good thing.
|Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)|