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RawbW

Am I the only person who can’t change a tire to save their lives?

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I have never had a smooth tire change. Every time I change a tire it’s a have the ER room on speedial, money saved up for rim re-anodizing, and hopefully have the next few days off of work affair. It’s a sweat filled, curse word infused, all afternoon brawl.

theres nothing technical about. It’s caveman simplicity. My brain understands all things mechanical and beyond. My brain memorized every technical piece of data on tire changes. Yet, this will get me everytime.

ive seen every how-to, I’ve bought motion pro irons, made sure the stars are aligned, etc etc. yes I know there’s people that change them in 5 mins one handed. But that’s not how it’s going down over here. The rims come out hammered, I’ve torn beads, punched through sidewalls, bent rims, the list of carnage goes on and on.

I’d ask for tips, but that would be hopeless. Anywho, wrench on.

  • Haha 1

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Its all touch. Or karma if you prefer. You simply have to do it a bunch and learn how to do it.

I have much better luck with shorter tire irons. Those that are about 8" work best for me. A buddy has some about 20" long, and I can't use them -- they always pinch, screw up the bead, rim, etc.

Talk to your local dealer and have them let you have a bunch of take-off tires and tubes. Practice. Then return them to the dealer for their disposal service (tires are a royal pain to get rid of, trash dumps do NOT want them).

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Oh man I have so been there. I just recently  found my tire changing touch. It’s just one of those things that click one day for no rhyme or reason. Neres my formula in no particular order. 3 spoons, 1 big, 2 small, beer, cussing. Good luck ymmv. 

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23 minutes ago, pat22043 said:

Its all touch. Or karma if you prefer. You simply have to do it a bunch and learn how to do it.

I have much better luck with shorter tire irons. Those that are about 8" work best for me. A buddy has some about 20" long, and I can't use them -- they always pinch, screw up the bead, rim, etc.

Talk to your local dealer and have them let you have a bunch of take-off tires and tubes. Practice. Then return them to the dealer for their disposal service (tires are a royal pain to get rid of, trash dumps do NOT want them).

Sometimes 90 percent of the tire will go smoothly and I’ll think “I’ve got it” and then that last 10 will bite me. I’ve got a big motion pro(16”) and two short ones. Big automotive ones will ruin things in a hurry so I don’t bother with those anymore lol

but i will be practicing more hopefully, with better income, and trying to narrow my stable to one actually set up for me bike.

Edited by RawbW
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I had years of good tire changes until 2018. I pinched more tubes than the previous 10 years combined. I thought I had lost my touch. One episode at a race earlier in the year when I was rushing started the whole mess. I believe I was just going too fast and not thinking it through. My best advice is to do it when you’re not tired and just take your time. Another thing is making sure the tire you’re mounting is warm. If it’s cool outside I place the tire under the hood of my warmed up truck. It works great. 

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25 minutes ago, Dklassen said:

 My best advice is to do it when you’re not tired and just take your time. Another thing is making sure the tire you’re mounting is warm. If it’s cool outside I place the tire under the hood of my warmed up truck. It works great. 

yeah, warm tires are a lot easier to process.

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3 hours ago, Vish said:

Oh man I have so been there. I just recently  found my tire changing touch. It’s just one of those things that click one day for no rhyme or reason. Neres my formula in no particular order. 3 spoons, 1 big, 2 small, beer, cussing. Good luck ymmv. 

Yeah a beer and some good tunes could go a long way. Music that will keep your patience, otherwise the garage will turn into a game of dodgespoon.

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2 hours ago, Dklassen said:

I had years of good tire changes until 2018. I pinched more tubes than the previous 10 years combined. I thought I had lost my touch. One episode at a race earlier in the year when I was rushing started the whole mess. I believe I was just going too fast and not thinking it through. My best advice is to do it when you’re not tired and just take your time. Another thing is making sure the tire you’re mounting is warm. If it’s cool outside I place the tire under the hood of my warmed up truck. It works great. 

Warm tires do make a difference, that is a useful tip. Windex on the bead seems a little helpful too. I was out of windex tonight and took a break to write my complaint post lol.

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28 minutes ago, HevyRotashunz said:

They've become mostly easy for me, music, alcohol, lots of soapy water in a spray bottle, mp spoons. I did just notice I put my new directional front on backwards though.

Not enough alcohol.

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Since I've worked in bike shops for many years, tire changes became pretty routine. A buddy of mine rides a Harley and wanted help changing his rear tire. It turned out to be one of the toughest tire changes I ever tackled. The wheel was spoked and fairly narrow (bike was an older 90's model) so there was a tube involved. After fighting, sweating and cursing with that bugger it was finally on....time to grab some beer and relax. The tire was holding air so I'm relieved, now let's get the tools put away. I had brought over my own tire irons, two of each type - large and small, had used them all I think. Well it seemed like I could only find 3 of the 4, oh well let's grab another beer & BS some more. It still bugged me that one was missing and eventually the search resumed. Suddenly it dawned on my where it was, one of the small ones was still with the tire, trapped between the tube & rubber - made a funny lump there! Never did that one before, makes you wonder how riding on that wheel would have been like?!

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I do them dry.  No lube.  Seems to keep the bead in the drop center better that way, and that is the key to getting the tire installed.  If it starts getting tight when it's going on, go back around and push the bead back down on both sides of the tire. 

Tube pinching is always a possibility.  You have to really keep an eye on things.  Watch that tube when you're levering the tire onto the rim initially, you can pinch it there.  The more common place is of course when you're levering the last bead onto the rim.  When you push the tire iron between the rim and tire, make sure to pull it back out so just the tip of the lever is on the lip of the rim.  It can't grab the tube if it's just on the edge of the rim.

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My tricks:

When you are working on the rimlock and tube, on the opposite side of the tire you want to take them out of, take a tire spoon, insert it and pull the spoon all of the way back and support it under the rotor or sprocket.  This will keep the back bead from "following" the bead on the tire side you are trying to work.  On the working side, use a couple of blocks, hammer ends, large screw driver handles, or similar, between the rim and tire bead to hold the tire away from the rim.  This makes it easier to get your hands in there and work the tube & rim lock, without the tire squeezing you.  This helps both while coming off and going back on.  Some pictures would really help with this description...

 

As others have probably stated, NEVER try and pry a bead over the rim unless you are constantly making sure that the opposite bead is down inside the rim, and not up where it seats.  It is very difficult the stretch the bead.

 

The ebay tire stands are also useful.  The bead breaker is a bit of a novelty on a tube tire, but I broke tubeless streetbike beads with it :)  On a dirt bike it is sure better than the floor or a 5 gallon bucket.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/HomCom-Motorcycle-Tire-Changing-Stand-with-Adjustable-Bead-Breaker-Tool/352464023059?epid=0&hash=item52107e2e13:g:sD0AAOSwjt1cAZDc:rk:17:pf:0

Edited by DernHumpus

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It's like virgin sex.

- Plenty of lubrication makes it a completely different event
- Get it good and warm first (put tire in sun or under electric blanket in winter)
- Take it in a little at a time until it finally pops in completely
- Careful with your hands or you might tear something

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15 hours ago, RawbW said:

I have never had a smooth tire change. Every time I change a tire it’s a have the ER room on speedial, money saved up for rim re-anodizing, and hopefully have the next few days off of work affair. It’s a sweat filled, curse word infused, all afternoon brawl.

 

I think that you fit in the majority of people that change their own tires. I change mine and sometimes things go less difficult than others. What I've found is that breaking the bead can be a PITA. I sometimes place a bottle jack between my truck's trailer hitch and the tire and extend the jack. A Motion Pro bead buddy helps. I put on my knee guards which makes it easier to compress the tire so it goes into the dish. Take small bites with multiple spoons.

Well placed words such as "bitch" and "effing whore" are helpful as well, along with a few Denoginizers.

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Best truck is to always remember to give the bead as much slack as possible on the side your working. So you push the opposite side of he bead in the center of the rim and hold it there as good as you can to give that little extra slack to pry it off the opposite side. 

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Watch a bunch of you tube videos and they will give you all the right tips . I have a Rabaconda tire machine and I can take a tire off in less than a minute and get a new one back on in less than 3 . 2 years ago I couldn't change a tire . ( the rabaconda is like cheating tho )

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