Saturday, January 24, 2015

ural: fresh tread

I put some new tires on the Ural this past weekend. The old tires were a mix of various tread styles in Russian and Duro brand tires that had serious cracks in the sidewalls. I knew when I purchased the Ural that I would need to address this. I ordered up some Duro 307's since they have a little more aggressive tread than the stock 308's. I figured they should be better for winter riding and that the snow shouldn't clog them like the 308's. I don't mind changing the occasional tire, but honestly, I was dreading doing four tire/tube changes. I happen to have some heavy duty tire irons as well as my stock BMW set that came with my R60/5. Again, I wasn't looking forward to this as I have been having some back pain due to a pulled muscle, but this weekend was supposed to be nice in terms of the weather. I knew that if it didn't happen this weekend that it never would.  I didn't have any trouble getting the Ural jacked up and the wheels off. The center stand allowed teasy access to the rear and a previous owner happened to have included a v notched 2x4 to prop under the engine to allow the front to slip off. A jack under the sidecar and all three wheels were off in addition to the spare. (I bit the bullet and started demounting work after bringing the tires/wheels inside to warm up next to the space heater in the basement. I cleaned the rims and did a little grinding inside the rims as the original weld seam was left un-ground in a few areas (proof of the rough finishing that these early rigs had). One all of the surface rust was cleaned up, I steel wooled the outer rim, put new rim strips on and prepared for mounting the new tires. Again, I softened these up by placing them next to my space heater. I repeated this process four times and by the end of the afternoon, I had all new rubber on the Ural rims. I went outside to complete the mounting job and made sure to re-grease the axles and torque things down. I also installed new fuel lines, adjusted the clutch, checked the lights and starter relays, installed a battery tender connection, and fixed the intermittent electric start issue. It was a good ride to work today with fresh tread and piece of mind.

No comments: