Man Blows Truck Tire and Keeps on Going
Imagine driving down the road, minding your own business, when suddenly an odd, metallic sound picks up in the background. But you can’t quite put your finger on what it actually is. Edward Scissorhands after a strong coffee? Someone rolling a massive tin can down the highway? Here, it was actually a driver cruising along at normal speeds without a tire. That’s right – full speed ahead with a metal rim on concrete. No rubber, no problem. For him anyway.
The sound of driving on the rim like that may be unfamiliar because, well, it’s a bad idea in the first place. For starters, doing it will bang up the wheel itself. We’re not saying that is the end of the world. You can get away with driving with a bad wheel as long as you have a tire and are not losing air from it. Someone doing that should move the bad wheel to the rear axle of the car, though.
Or just get a new wheel. For a steel one it is usually under $100. Aluminum may be more expensive. Apart from direct damage to the wheel you have to remember that it may be part of the overall drivetrain along with the driveshaft and differentials and so on. Driving on the rim, especially at high speeds, can throw the whole system out of wack. This guy is scraping along in what appears to be a Chevy S-10 from the 80’s.
Standard S-10âs are rear-wheel drive so he probably isnât risking his drivetrain (because the flat is on the front). His biggest risk is probably throwing his steering s
Standard S-10’s are rear-wheel drive so he probably isn’t risking his drivetrain (because the flat is on the front). His biggest risk is probably throwing his steering system off kilter. But let’s leave the thought of mechanical damage behind for a moment.
He is taking a massive safety risk by taking a right turn at full speed and transferring the truck’s center of mass to the front and left. All the tire load would be there except there is no tire! If you look carefully it looks like he may have started to skid a little going into the curve and had to slow down. There is a lot of scientific theory behind that but anyone who has driven a car knows what it feels like and probably wouldn’t take a turn like that much less drive on the rim in general. So obviously the guy is a little nuts.
Here’s where the incident got taped in Omaha, Nebraska. The guy doing the taping had pulled over to make a left turn when the tireless wonder rolled by on the right. There is a residential area up the street a ways; one explanation is that he was close to home when he lost the tire. He thought he could make it home before worrying about the tire. A more likely explanation is that he just wasn’t that concerned about his rims or anything else with this beater! The Kelly Blue Book only goes back to 1992 for S-10’s and won’t even suggest values for “poor” condition cars (like this guy’s) at all. For a ’92 S-10 in fair condition they say a reasonable price is $665. For this one? $400 might be generous. Spending 50 bucks on a new steel wheel is 8% of the value of the car, if not more. Ain’t gonna happen. He’ll probably spend 50 bucks on a tire so he doesn’t get pulled over by the cops one day. Otherwise, this car looks like it has “walkaway insurance.” If something goes seriously wrong, just walk away. Losing the tire was not quite serious enough, apparently!
Just as a reminder that if you do get a flat tire, if the wheel is steel, you can be pretty confident driving on it slowly for a short distance, i.e. to get out of traffic or to the mechanic. If the wheel is aluminum, especially cheap aluminum, think twice. It may not hold up as well, so plan in advance. Join the AAA, keep a spare, or keep something to repair the tire in the trunk. Or all of the above.