So this is what a blown nose tire feels like...

asicer

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asicer
I was debating whether to post this here or in "Lessons Learned" so I flipped a coin...

On Friday (New Years Eve), I borrowed a 182 to visit some family. Pre-flight, taxi and run-up were all normal but on takeoff at around 40-45kts I started getting a weird shimmy through the rudder pedals and the acceleration felt a little bit sluggish. I double checked that my heels were on the floor and that the brake lever was all the way in, which they were so I added a bit of backpressure to the yoke, which is what I usually do when I experience nose shimmy. Things got better so I added a bit more backpressure, the shimmy went away, we accelerated to 55kts and then we took off. After an uneventful flight, I made a normal landing and nothing felt out of the ordinary during the rollout. I I knew I wasn't going to make the first turnout (900ft from the threshold), which was a normal perpendicular taxiway so I went for the second (1700ft from the threshold), which was a high-speed exit taxiway. When I got there, the shimmy came back so I figured I should probably slow down. In the past, I've noticed that the Cessna shimmy went away as I drop below walking speed but this time it didn't. As a matter of fact, slowing down made it more of an up/down motion rather than a side-to-side motion. Also, there seemed to be more of a C172 sight-picture rather than a C182 sight-picture. That's when I put it all together and figured out it was a blown tire. The FBO wanted to know which tire so that they can get the correct equipment out so I shut down and found out it was the nose wheel.

Sorry, no pics but it really wasn't pic-worthy. It looked like just about any other flat tire would.

After getting towed in, I discovered that all of the A&P's on the field knocked off early for New Year's and nobody was coming back until Monday. Made several calls and finally found a volunteer to come in on New Year's Day. With the new nose tire, the return flight was completely uneventful. They still haven't sent me the bill, so I have no idea about the callout fee.
 
I got to experience a blown left main tire a month ago at CMA on roll out. Happened on a Sunday after thanksgiving. No one on the field to fix it and 150 miles from home. Had to take the train home, then return on the train the following day to retrieve the plane. $540 later it was fixed. 5E755EF4-671E-42CF-B23E-1F91EA132063.png
 
I got to experience a blown left main tire a month ago at CMA on roll out. Happened on a Sunday after thanksgiving. No one on the field to fix it and 150 miles from home. Had to take the train home, then return on the train the following day to retrieve the plane. $540 later it was fixed. View attachment 103390

That tire has nice thread too.
 
Yeah. It was something wrong with the tube. Told it was old and cracked. ‍♂️ Rental plane problems.
 
I was debating whether to post this here or in "Lessons Learned" so I flipped a coin...

On Friday (New Years Eve), I borrowed a 182 to visit some family. Pre-flight, taxi and run-up were all normal but on takeoff at around 40-45kts I started getting a weird shimmy through the rudder pedals and the acceleration felt a little bit sluggish. I double checked that my heels were on the floor and that the brake lever was all the way in, which they were so I added a bit of backpressure to the yoke, which is what I usually do when I experience nose shimmy. Things got better so I added a bit more backpressure, the shimmy went away, we accelerated to 55kts and then we took off. After an uneventful flight, I made a normal landing and nothing felt out of the ordinary during the rollout. I I knew I wasn't going to make the first turnout (900ft from the threshold), which was a normal perpendicular taxiway so I went for the second (1700ft from the threshold), which was a high-speed exit taxiway. When I got there, the shimmy came back so I figured I should probably slow down. In the past, I've noticed that the Cessna shimmy went away as I drop below walking speed but this time it didn't. As a matter of fact, slowing down made it more of an up/down motion rather than a side-to-side motion. Also, there seemed to be more of a C172 sight-picture rather than a C182 sight-picture. That's when I put it all together and figured out it was a blown tire. The FBO wanted to know which tire so that they can get the correct equipment out so I shut down and found out it was the nose wheel.

Sorry, no pics but it really wasn't pic-worthy. It looked like just about any other flat tire would.

After getting towed in, I discovered that all of the A&P's on the field knocked off early for New Year's and nobody was coming back until Monday. Made several calls and finally found a volunteer to come in on New Year's Day. With the new nose tire, the return flight was completely uneventful. They still haven't sent me the bill, so I have no idea about the callout fee.

Tires...PIA!

Got to have them.
Couple years ago I had my front tire go flat while I was back taxing on my home runway to take off. Luckily I noticed it right before I was going to take off.
I was able to taxi back to my hangar with it flat. It was rough on the tire, beat it up pretty good. So I ordered up a new tire and tube and installed it myself after I got the new tire. The new tire solved the front end shimmy.

Now I keep spares in my hangar so I can help myself. I probably should take the spares with me when we travel and tools to change it?
 
A new tube every once in a while sure helps. Depends on how often the tire is changed. Finding "old, cracked" tubes is a sign that someone is "saving" money.

Before I retired a few years ago I filed several SDRs on Goodyear tires. They were using a decal inside the tire that had a hard plastic overlay on it. That overlay would work loose as the tire flexed and would chafe through the tube. I repaired at least three that went flat that way, one where a main went flat on the runway. Lots of power to taxi off onto a taxiway. Had to run out with a wheel and tire and change it quick so it could be towed. New tube, and clean that decal out of there. Started pulling the decals out of new tires on initial installation.
 
Tires...PIA!Now I keep spares in my hangar so I can help myself. I probably should take the spares with me when we travel and tools to change it?

Particularly if you go off the beaten path OR have an unusual tire size. I've got a friend who'd blown a tube on an RV-10 landing at a backwoods strip.

Two problems - no way to jack the airplane. No quick way to get a tube. Not a good combination.
 
Don’t forget the Schrader valve. I had an acquaintance had a flat tire at an unattended field due to a bad Schrader valve. It cost him plenty. I keep a spare valve and tool and compressor on the plane.
 
IMG_1370.JPG
Flying into Columbia County, NY (1B1), back in February 2013. The tire actually blew during takeoff rotation, but I didn't realize what had happened until I landed.
Oddly I was doing soft field practice and holding the nose off as long as possible at Columbia. Surprise!
It was a pain to steer it so I powered up and did a high speed taxi to keep the nose off the ground all the way to the taxiway turn.
The best part of the story is that I called Arrow Aviation to tell them about the flat and they dispatched a couple of mechanics to fly up and fix it.
For some reason the two mechanics flew off to Groton, CT (GON), 50 miles in the opposite direction. It took them awhile to get to me. :D
 
Been there done that. I had a flat nosewheel while taxiing out in the middle of the night at KSUS. It was 6° outside. Luckily the airport police came out and let us warm up in their car while we tried to find a line guy to tow us back to the ramp. I never thought I would be happy to be in the back of a cop car, but it sure was nice to be warm while we waited.
 
I had a 6:00-6 main tire flat due to a torn valve stem on a Sunday and no airport shop open. Went to a garden supply and bought a new 6:00-6 tube, put it in, aired the tire at a service station put the wheel back on and flew home. Only difference is that the garden tub valve stem is on the tire center so I had to stretch it to line up with aircraft wheel stem hole but worked fine.
 
A new tube every once in a while sure helps. Depends on how often the tire is changed. Finding "old, cracked" tubes is a sign that someone is "saving" money.
Having my second blown nose tire in 11 months (different airplane) made me want to circle back around to this comment. How often should tubes be replaced? Do most people run them to failure?
 
So... how hard is it to change an airplane tire? I've never had a need, but it probably will come up some time.
 
Having never done it myself previously, the nose on my 180 was pretty dry rot. Replaced tube and tire. Split rim made it cake. Getting the nose off the ground and the fairing out of the way was the biggest obstacle.
 
Have someone push tail down to get nose off the ground would work. How do you field repair a main tire? I don’t see a jack in the cargo compartment LOL :).
 
How many check the tire pressure with a gauge before flight. Ever?

I have never in 29 years. Didn't realize a car tire gauge would work (never thought of it). After 3-tires in a year (across two airplanes in the club and ~$600 each to fix according to mx officer) we are being asked to check the pressure with gauge as part of pre flight.

I had never done it before.
 
How many check the tire pressure with a gauge before flight. Ever?

I have never in 29 years. Didn't realize a car tire gauge would work (never thought of it). After 3-tires in a year (across two airplanes in the club and ~$600 each to fix according to mx officer) we are being asked to check the pressure with gauge as part of pre flight.

I had never done it before.
I do a visual check. Fairings can make getting a gauge on to the tire valve rather painful.
@asicer how close are you to a prop strike with a flat nose tire? Not that close?
Not that close. It helps that both times were with a 3-bladed prop.
 
If the tube is bunched up or chafing the tire wall, you won’t really know until it’s too late. Besides ensuring proper inflation and external tire condition during pre-flight, the rest is pretty much dumb luck it seems.
 
Faa certification requires clearance with the nose gear on the rim. Mooney drawings show the clearance on 2 blade props at less than 0.5 inch. But it is clearance.
 
Having my second blown nose tire in 11 months (different airplane) made me want to circle back around to this comment. How often should tubes be replaced? Do most people run them to failure?
Most are run to failure, or are replaced when the mechanic notices that it's in bad shape. How long they last is defined by a lot of variables: ambient heat, UV, takeoffs and landings, oil or fuel dripping on the nosewheel, how many times they're yanked out of an old tire and stuffed into the new, and so on. Failing to use talc on them when installing is a good way to reduce their life expectancy; they get chafed as the tire deforms as it rotates against the ground. Sometimes they stretch with age and the next time they're put into a new tire they're wrinkled and the folds get compressed by the pressure, weakening the rubber. Heavy braking can cause slippage between a main tire and its wheel, stressing the filler stem.

Cars quit using tubed tires in the 1960s. We are so advanced in aviation, we are...but it's changing, slowly: https://www.beringer-aero.com/en/wheels-brakes-kit
 
Circa 1965 many Cessnas came with tubeless tires. However; they were inflated with a “ Football Pin” rather than a valve stem. They were also prone to leakage.
The “ fix” was to reconfigure with a tube. The tubeless tires with a valve in the sidewall were still common and the tube was not apparent. There were several incidents of the Pin being inserted in the side valve and through the tube. Hmmm.
 
Even bicycle tires have moved to tubeless designs. I'm not sure why the aviation wheels need to be a 2-piece design, either. Reminds me of cheap riding lawnmowers.
 
How many check the tire pressure with a gauge before flight. Ever?

I have never in 29 years. Didn't realize a car tire gauge would work (never thought of it). After 3-tires in a year (across two airplanes in the club and ~$600 each to fix according to mx officer) we are being asked to check the pressure with gauge as part of pre flight.

I had never done it before.
I'd hazard a guess that the tube either had a wrinkle when installed or the stem was slightly off. I know some guys like to add a few psi if they have a tendency to make tight turns using differential braking. Having that many go... something is going on.

I check before a long cross country. But it's not fun
 
Even bicycle tires have moved to tubeless designs. I'm not sure why the aviation wheels need to be a 2-piece design, either. Reminds me of cheap riding lawnmowers.
Ever changed a tire on a cheap riding lawnmower? It's no fun. The smaller the wheel, the harder it is to force the bead over the rim. Inside that tire bead is a whole lot of steel wire, several turns of it. It's there to prevent the pressure from stretching the tire so that it pops off the wheel. A 6" aircraft tire is really tough in that bead.

upload_2022-11-26_14-2-14.jpeg
 
Even bicycle tires have moved to tubeless designs. I'm not sure why the aviation wheels need to be a 2-piece design, either. Reminds me of cheap riding lawnmowers.

We’re flying aircraft built in the 1960s. Why would you expect a tubeless design to be incorporated on an aircraft that has existed for over half a century already?
 
I had to put a new tire on a small rim once, riding mower I think. Had to take it to a tire place and it almost broke their mounting machine. Small tubeless tires are evil LOL.
 
We’re flying aircraft built in the 1960s. Why would you expect a tubeless design to be incorporated on an aircraft that has existed for over half a century already?
Well, we have 1960s airplanes with GPS and glass panels in them. Mode S transponders. ADS-B. Extensive engine monitoring stuff. Some have electronic ignition now. Noise-cancelling headsets. LED lighting. Much better engine oils.

None of that existed in the 1960s. It's nice stuff, and we shouldn't have to keep a 1960's airplane in original condition unless that's all we can afford. I sure wouldn't want to fly with vacuum-tube radios. Awful things. Or incandescent landing lights that have a 25-hour design life. Or a 25-amp generator.

The two-piece wheel is mechanically necessary due to tire stiffness. Beringer has a seal between the wheel halves for the tubeless function.

In the 1970s I sold heavy wheel and brake parts. Wheels for heavier trucks and earthmoving equipment were all multi-piece things, to let that huge, stiff tire be easily installed without a lot of powerful equipment. In the mid-70s tubeless tires and wheels were created for trucks; they had stronger beads but much shallower bead rims on the wheel that enabled big tire-changing equipment to install them. Those tires were puncture-resistant and much safer, since the wheel didn't have tire retaining rings that sometimes blew off with terrific force, especially if the installer didn't know about the many different profiles used in them. The wrong ring wouldn't lock in properly.

upload_2022-11-26_15-14-6.png
 
Ever changed a tire on a cheap riding lawnmower? It's no fun. The smaller the wheel, the harder it is to force the bead over the rim. Inside that tire bead is a whole lot of steel wire, several turns of it. It's there to prevent the pressure from stretching the tire so that it pops off the wheel. A 6" aircraft tire is really tough in that bead.

View attachment 112616
I have. Dealing with having to separate it, keeping the tube from getting pinched and keeping the valve stem aligned is all a pain. No reason there can't be replacements for that by now. Even go karts have single piece wheels.
 
Well, we have 1960s airplanes with GPS and glass panels in them. Mode S transponders. ADS-B. Extensive engine monitoring stuff. Some have electronic ignition now. Noise-cancelling headsets. LED lighting. Much better engine oils.

None of that existed in the 1960s. It's nice stuff, and we shouldn't have to keep a 1960's airplane in original condition unless that's all we can afford. I sure wouldn't want to fly with vacuum-tube radios. Awful things. Or incandescent landing lights that have a 25-hour design life. Or a 25-amp generator.

Sure, but getting someone to want to spend $5-10 grand on a set of wheels for no practical reason is unlikely to happen, which was my point. I can count how many wheel/brake conversions I’ve done in the past 15 years on one hand. 99% of the time people are all for it until they’re presented with the price of the conversion kit. So regardless if a two piece wheel is necessary or not, conversions are pretty much a thing of the past because owners are too cheap to do them.
 
I still clearly remember the morning CFI said I was going to solo - we took off from HSV and went to DCU (training area) for a few landings to make sure I was ready. On the last landing, turn out on alpha and start to taxi back - while he is talking I notice the plane did not want to move as easily and felt squishy making corrections. We opened both doors to see that the l/r tires were fine, step out and see the nose was flat...

A phone call later the A&P was loading a spare and driving over (40 minutes wait). He said they knew it had a small leak and needed air added daily (but no squawk!) Needless to say, the solo did not happen and had to wait a couple of days.

Tires, geesh!
 
A shimmy may be nothing bad, but it can also be some very bad stuff, blown tire, scissor link, blown damper, and so on, especially in a RG, if I’m under V1 and get any significant shimmy I’ll abort the takeoff, worse case you just blow some time and take off again
 
Don’t forget the Schrader valve. I had an acquaintance had a flat tire at an unattended field due to a bad Schrader valve. It cost him plenty. I keep a spare valve and tool and compressor on the plane.
I carry a drill style compressor in the plane, too. It gets used surprisingly often
 
Has anyone done the unthinkable and pushed a can of slime into a flat tire ?
 
Part of the problem is some folks want to run the tires till the “ first cord” shows.
I’m sure many folks don’t realize just how then the remaining carcass is.
Maybe 1/8 inch on most light aircraft.
I have one so folks can put fingers inside and out.
Almost touch!
 
Part of the problem is some folks want to run the tires till the “ first cord” shows.
I’m sure many folks don’t realize just how then the remaining carcass is.
Maybe 1/8 inch on most light aircraft.
I have one so folks can put fingers inside and out.
Almost touch!


None of the flats I had were anywhere near the cords

Tube failures, stem issues, FOD
 
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