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BLOW-OUT at 50 mph This can happen to you!

 
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rajron
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 30, 2009 6:16 pm    Post subject: BLOW-OUT at 50 mph This can happen to you! Reply with quote

Coming back from a late break today, on my scooter I had a blow-out, on a turn with the front tire. Sounds bad but it ended up OK. The steering dramatically got heavy, so I immediately slowed down and moved to the right side of the expressway. Found the nearest exit and pulled into the first parking area and discovered my front tire was flat.
My scoot is a 06, had it since new, over thirteen thousand miles on the front tire and it is original. The tire itself still looks good, or at least there is still a lot of tread.
What happened is the valve stem failed it let go rapidly and I got a blow out see pic below.

People please check your tires and stems especially if you have an older scooter. I park my scooter indoors at home, but at work, and just trucking around the scooter is exposed to the elements, most likely contributing to the failure.
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carreybat
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 30, 2009 6:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

wow, thank god you're ok. thanks for the heads up too. i'll check mine as soon as i get home!
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cadillaczac
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 30, 2009 7:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wow, that is so weird, I had the exact same thing happen to my front tire. I was going about 50 BMPH and the front tire went flat, steering got heavy and I couldn't figure out why (at that time). I pulled over and the valve stem had torn at the base.
Glad you were able to hang on and are ok.

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iwabj
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 30, 2009 7:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

oops

Last edited by iwabj on Fri Jun 25, 2010 12:14 pm; edited 1 time in total
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DennisD
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 30, 2009 8:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It doesn't help any when you pull on the stem removing your pump head. Always counter the movement with your fingers when putting on or removing the pump head. The less back and forth movement the better.
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rajron
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 30, 2009 8:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I do keep my tires at the correct pressures so there is a lot of pumping use a bicycle pump and honestly I am not always conscious of the stress put on the stem. That said, the rubber at the base of the stem was/is rotted, it should have been replaced a year ago.

I'm going to replace my stems, and tires ASAP
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iwabj
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 30, 2009 9:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

oops

Last edited by iwabj on Fri Jun 25, 2010 12:14 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Skootz Kabootz
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 30, 2009 9:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Glad you're OK Rajron! 13,000 miles on your front tire????? Shocked Them's a lotta miles!
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pugbuddy
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 30, 2009 10:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
What happened is the valve stem failed it let go rapidly and I got a blow out


This is exactly what happened to me--on the freeway, no less--but with the back tire some time ago! It's scary, no doubt, and I'm glad you are ok! [/code]

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laxer
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 30, 2009 11:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Skootz Kabootz wrote:
Glad you're OK Rajron! 13,000 miles on your front tire????? Shocked Them's a lotta miles!


Agreed, is it really 13,000 or is it 1,300?
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rajron
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 31, 2009 12:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Im not proud I havent changed my front tire in over 13K miles, but, Im proud of the fact I survived, with out crashing by riding that long without spending monies on a tire, as stupid as it may be. While confessing; I did run the rear tire until the second treads came in; those new treads dont work as well as the first ones, I dont recall exactly but I think I changed the rear around 9K miles, another dumb thing.
Just to be clear, I just purchased, on-line, two new tires, eta next week sometime, so I will be scooter down until I replace them I will look locally for new stems which will also be replaced the same time as the tire.
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mandyscoots
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 31, 2009 12:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

same thing happened to me a couple days ago but I have about 3500
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Portland_Rider
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 31, 2009 12:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

rajon,

I'm glad that you and everyone else who has experienced a valve stem or other blowout are ok. That must have been a somewhat unnerving experience. You should be proud that you handled it well.

I appreciate the advice to keep an eye on the stems and handle the stems/valves carefully when checking/filling them with air refraining from pulling and pushing them back and forth.
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DennisD
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 31, 2009 1:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Right angle valve stems available on ebay and elsewhere.
http://motors.shop.ebay.com/__?_from=R40&_trksid=m39&_nkw=90+degree+valve+stem
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charlie55
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 31, 2009 2:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Even though our scoots are made in Taiwan, there's a strong possibility that certain components, such as the valve stems are sourced from the mainland. Here's a link to an article o Scootdawg, advising of this problem:

http://scootdawg.proboards.com/index.cgi?action=display&board=steeringissue&thread=21635

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rajron
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 31, 2009 2:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wow!
Its good our scoots are so light, and slow, otherwise there would be a lot of hurt people with all the stem failures mentioned here on MB and at ScootDawg.
We should encourage everyone to CHECK THE STEMS.
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Cheshire
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 31, 2009 2:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

rajron wrote:
That said, the rubber at the base of the stem was/is rotted....


I'm willing to bet dry rot is what did it, not cheap components. Even the best rubber is going to age. Most exposed rubber I've dealt with has about a 2-year lifespan...at the absolute most.

Note to self: check those valve stem seals. I'm wondering if it would be a good idea to change them out every year or "x" number of tire changes, or if the rubber's lifespan can be prolonged with some kind of treatment, just like leather needs to be oiled or waxed. That reminds me...time to give my boots some attention. Last rain storm the leather was threatening to take on water.

Dang...now that I'm thinking about it, I need to take a look at the O-ring seals on my MSR fuel bottles, too. At least my water bottle is simply a screw-on polymer lid. Rolling Eyes
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charlie55
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 31, 2009 2:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Personally, I think it's cheap components. I don't put a lot of miles on my cage, so I usually can make a set of skins last 5 or 6 years. Never had a valve stem fail on me. Same thing for rubber bushings in the suspension. They take an even worse beating than the stems and typically last 100K miles or more.

Got myself a pair of billet aluminum right-angle stems, the kind that gets bolted on from the tire side of the rim. Gonna put those in at the end of the season. In the meantime some liquid silicone applied with an artist's brush should keep things supple enough.

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ericalm
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 31, 2009 3:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Zac and rajron: Did you guys both have tubed tires?

I agree, 13K is a lot for a tire!

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rajron
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 31, 2009 3:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

My scooter is tubeless my front tire still has deep treads, looks good for another 10K but its getting replaced.
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illnoise
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 31, 2009 4:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you're using a bike tire pump as opposed to a compressor, be really careful, I ripped the whole valve off of the tube on my bicycle the other day just because those pumps grip the valve too hard and then you have to wiggle it like crazy to pull it loose (brand new tube, filling it for the second time!). I wouldn't use a bike pump on a scooter tire if you can help it.

Good point that a blowout (often, but not always) isn't as scary as you'd think. Back when I was dumb enough to ride on 30-year-old bald CEAT original stock Vespa tires, I rode a few miles on a flat once before I noticed it. Obviously, blowouts are sometimes terrifying and life-threatening, but surprisingly, most of the time, if your head's on straight and you realize what's going on, you can recover and get off the road safely.

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vaderscoot
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 31, 2009 5:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

same thing happened to me too i posted it on here but no one really seemed to think it happened
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laxer
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 31, 2009 7:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

vaderscoot wrote:
same thing happened to me too i posted it on here but no one really seemed to think it happened


It didn't Razz
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DennisD
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 31, 2009 1:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Years ago I worked in a tire store and it was common to require new valve stems when new tires were mounted. The customers who raised hell because the new stem cost $1.50 usually ended up keeping the old ones. Some of them came back sheepishly later, some didn't have a problem.

It might be a good idea to consider replacing stems every time you change tires. The cost is negligible compared to the benefits.
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cadillaczac
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 31, 2009 1:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My tires are also tubeless, however, I believe the reason for the tear in my valve stem came from the very cheap and worn airchuck at the gas station by my house. As some of you stated, it was very hard to get the thing to actually put air in my tire, resulting in a lot of back and forth movement on the stem. About twenty miles down the road, ka-blam-o!
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jijifer
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 31, 2009 6:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was amazed at how much sturdier the stem of my zippy is compared to stock. On stock, I had to push the back side of my stem while I put in air or other wise the stem would just lean back when I tried to attach the pump.

The zippy stem is solid and doesn't move.

at the ride on Saturday, a guy on a bicycle came over to ask us how to use the pump. He'd tried only to let all the air out of his tires and have the valve sink into the rim.

I knew the novice was in trouble. Pulling the valve back there isn't easy without taking the tire off the rim. Just the metal tip of the valve was out and told him to try 1 more time, careful not push the pump too hard, see if it engage with his fingers holding the valve and must lay on the air because with bike tires that lets out almost as much as it puts in. I doubt the guy was successful and I hope home was too far away.
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pyrocpu
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 31, 2009 11:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've been using Zymol Seal Conditioner to keep my convertible's rubber seals soft & pliable. Not cheap, at $30/bottle, but definitely cheaper than new rubber runs from the stealership!

Having said that, I wonder if it might be a good idea to use that on the valve stems to try and prolong their life... the stuff really makes & keeps rubber/rubber-like materials very supple!

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rajron
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 11, 2009 3:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I got my new tires in today from ATVtiresales, $89 for two 100/90/10 Zippys, plus $18 shipping. I thought it was a good deal but shipping took longer than I thought it would, but, being over the weekend and it was a holiday maybe it was expected.
This was the first time I ever changed a tire other than a bicycle tire, man it was not easy, matter of fact it was down right hard to do.
Discovered in the process my front bearings were very light on grease, so I re-packed them with high pressure grease, they should last a long time now.
The new front tire is the same diameter as the old tire, so my speedo is reading as with the old tire, confirmed it with a GPS.
The standard size rear tire brought my mph back up to normal, Im happy for that.
I got new stems from a Honda dealer, turns out a Goldwing uses the same style stem, but in a silver color.
Here are some pics can you tell which was my front tire with over thirteen thousand miles; its the one next to the small rear tire with only three thousand miles.
After riding the WFs GTS, it feels strange riding the Buddy again, the Buddy is much lighter and nimble, but much slower in speed. Strange as it may be, the GTS is quicker and smoother steering than the Buddy, but the Buddy is so much lighter, making it easier to push around.

Several others have had stem failures be sure to check your stems
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oldgreyrider
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 23, 2015 5:20 pm    Post subject: For what its worth Reply with quote

Two weeks ago I had a rear tire loose inflation while traveling at 50 mph.
I was crossing the state of Florida on a borrowed Jonway 150 that I had borrowed from my sister in-law.
I had traveled about 150 miles and was on a rarely traveled road when the scooter began sliding sideways.
My thoughts were to get off the asphalt as I attempted to slow with the front disc brake.
The scooter flipped when the front tire caught the shoulder and vaulted me into the ground apparently shoulder/face/belly first from the grass stains on my helmet and clothes.
I blacked out when the scooter flipped but do remember a second of consciousness as the scooter landed upside down in front of me on its steel basket/carrier.
Its unknown how long I was out alongside the road till found by ? apparently a passing motorist.
Life-flight flew me to a trauma center in Palm Beach where I was treated for a Collapsed Lung,Broken Collar Bone and 5 Fractured Ribs.
I assume its common for the law to take a blood sample at a crash scene and I recall giving permission before once again passing out from the pain. I am recovering well and im lucky to be alive as only inertia and God was in control when I left the scooter airborne.
I have been riding motorcycles all my life since the age of 13 so I guess 45 years and have survived 3 major accidents. Two of these were due to rear tires!
I own 7 motorcycles and 2 Honda Metropolitan scooters that have DRUM brakes that do not lock like this scooters front disc did.
My metro scooters have steel rims that seem to retain the bead of even a flat tire but this scooter has aluminum rims that seem to freely give up the bead lock that normally keeps the bead on the rim and avoids tire slip.
I aired up both front and rear tires before my ride to the proper air pressure but didn't notice the dry rot on the stem of the rear tire.
I was returning from a previous ride from the east coast to the west coast that was 190 miles and had the rear tire slip then as well loosing some pressure but managed to slowly make my way to an air station.
Bottom line is when you get into a rush and borrow an unknown scooter you can over look a dry rotted slowly leaking valve stem that almost cost my life. My warning was when the rear tire had lost air 10 days previous when traveling to the west coast.
Needless to say I missed my flight and had to travel by car because of the collapsed lung but maybe now I will pay more attention to my bikes condition before I ride.
Hopefully someone may read this and save themselves from 4 days in the Hospital or worse from overlooking something like a faulty valve stem. Just in case you were wondering, The scooter is fine and only had a bent steel rear carrier.
Of coarse the law found nothing in my blood test as they scratched heir heads on what caused my crash.
Towing bill was 471 bucks to South Bay FL at 7 bucks a mile each way. No wonder they have so many unclaimed scooters.
I had 1200 bucks on me and the law put it in evidence lock up but left everything else including my wallet with the scooter towing company?
It was returned to me after they found no reason to charge me with anything or just maybe for safe keeping till I was released.
Bottom line is they saved my life and this accident was nobody's fault but my own for assuming all was well before riding.
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Dooglas
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 23, 2015 5:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Glad you weren't hurt. I have to comment, though, that all the discussion here is about your tire having 13,000 miles of use. You say this is the original tire on an '06 scooter. That probably means the tire is 10 years old. I don't care how many miles a scooter tire has on it - a 10 year old tire is an unsafe tire. Scooter tires are not expensive and our lives are balanced on 2 small rubber donuts. Tires are not a place to go cheap! (and yes, replace the valve stems along with the tires)
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scootERIK
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 23, 2015 6:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dooglas wrote:
Glad you weren't hurt. I have to comment, though, that all the discussion here is about your tire having 13,000 miles of use. You say this is the original tire on an '06 scooter. That probably means the tire is 10 years old. I don't care how many miles a scooter tire has on it - a 10 year old tire is an unsafe tire. Scooter tires are not expensive and our lives are balanced on 2 small rubber donuts. Tires are not a place to go cheap! (and yes, replace the valve stems along with the tires)


OP posted back in 2009 so the scooter was only ~3 years old then.
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k1dude
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 23, 2015 7:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Holy necropost! And Holy Smokes what a story! Shocked Whew Wha?

Glad you're alive!

I wonder if those fancy after market aluminum, chrome, or brass angled or 90 degree stems are any better than the cheap rubber and brass ones?

If so, next time I change tires I'm swapping out to fancier valve stems.
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Dooglas
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 23, 2015 11:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

scootERIK wrote:
OP posted back in 2009 so the scooter was only ~3 years old then.

Ooops. You are right. Another one of those necroposts and it slipped right by me.
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charlie55
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 24, 2015 2:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

k1dude wrote:
Holy necropost! And Holy Smokes what a story! Shocked Whew Wha?

Glad you're alive!

I wonder if those fancy after market aluminum, chrome, or brass angled or 90 degree stems are any better than the cheap rubber and brass ones?

If so, next time I change tires I'm swapping out to fancier valve stems.


Yes, they are well worth the cost. There's absolutely no flexing when you go to test the pressure or add air - just a solid mechanical connection. Furthermore, the rubber gasket that forms the seal between the halves of the stem and the rim is replaceable, so you can keep the same stems indefinitely. The only drawback I've heard of is that the inner passage is very narrow and the right angle is very sharp, making it very difficult to load up and use those "balance beads".

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Moyesdriver
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 24, 2015 11:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wheels should be balanced by pros at a shop, with the right machine. If your shop can't balance a scooter wheel, call around and find one that can. Here in Southern NH Souhegan Valley Motorsports, a Kawasaki dealer, balances all sizes of wheels, whereas other big dealers in the area can't. A good spin balancing is essential to anything that goes over 30 mph. Well worth the $15-20.
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kmrcstintn
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 25, 2015 7:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

to the OP...glad you are safe and that no catastrophic damage occurred!!!

as far as replacing tires/tubes/valve stems...already replaced the OEM tires & tubes on my '06 Shadow earlier this year and I am budgeting for new tires & tubes for my '09 GZ250 over the winter Wink

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