First, deflate the old tire. Break the tire beading with pushing your leg down and scooping the rim outward with the help of a tire iron. Then remove the tube from the tire. Push the new rubber tube inside and place it so that the new valve fits in the rim’s valve cavity properly.
With a tire, spoon bring the lip of the rubber tire on top of the rim. Putting the spoon between the tire and the rim and pulling it towards you. Repeat after every 3-4 inches until the tire has properly fit on both the sides of the rim. Fill air in the new tire to check for any leaks.
One can easily remove and fix a motorcycle tire with just a few tools and patience. Motorcycle rims are relatively smaller as compared to any other vehicles; all it needs is a little strength to remove the tube from its beading or the airtight seal between the tire and the rim.
Normally, mechanics use a hydraulic bead breaking machine that effortlessly removes the tube from the rims, but there are plenty of inexpensive ways to do it as well. Many bikes that have spoken wire wheels and forged aluminum wheels do not come with tubes in them.
While there are quantifiable differences that can be pointed out between the performance of tube and tubeless tires, the fitting of both types of tires is the same. Tube tires are still a little traditional and require a little more effort to fix as compared to their tubeless counterparts.
Changing a motorcycle tire requires a few basic tools like tire irons, spoons, and a few flat steel bars that help you scoop the tire from the rim. Avoid using screwdrivers and crowbars, these do not tire irons and can ruin the rim, tube, and tire.
Before removing the tire, you will have to place your bike in such a position that it is easier for you to slide the tire out. So, place your bike on some stand that will keep both the tires elevated.
Now make a 50/50 solution of water and soap that will work as a lubricant between the tire and the rim. Without a lubricant, removing the tire from the rim can be strenuous and can also cause damage to both of the components if you apply too much force. Once you have everything in place, follow the below-given instructions in sequential order:
Step 1. Deflate the tire by slowly depressing the valve with a valve key so that the air can exit the tube with ease. Since the air pressure in the tire is very high, removing the valve can result in the tire exerting high-pressure air on the value and nut, which could send it flying off. Once all the air is expelled, loosen the valve nut enough so that the tube can be detached from the rim.
Step 2. There are several methods you can use to break the rim and tire seal. The easiest one is to place your boot on the tire, as close as possible to the rim, and then pushing down the tire into the rim cavity while pulling a spoke upwards. Repeat this process throughout the tire on both sides. It is advisable to do this over a carpet or cardboard to prevent the rim from getting damaged by the floor.
If you find the above method difficult, you can try breaking the beading in a vice. This is a safer and cheap alternative for larger tires. With the vice’s jaws open wide, place the wheel in the vice in such a manner that the rim is about an inch away from the vice jaw. Slowly tighten the vice until the rim pops out from the squeezed tire. Repeat this for both sides across the tire.
Step 3. After all sides of the wheel have dropped in the well of the rim, take a tire iron, spoon, or flat iron bar and slide it between the rim and the tire. Push the iron away from you so that the lip of the tire comes over the rim. Hold the iron down with your knee, and repeat the same thing with another spoon at least 3-4 inches away.
Step 4. Repeat this and replace the spoon and iron over and over again until the whole tire pushes off the rim on both sides.
Step 5. Locate the inner tube of the tire and pull it outward. During this process, it is advisable to place one leg on the tire and rim to pull out the tube. Push the valve inside to remove the tube. Now, take a new tire and apply the lubricant solution all over it on both sides so that when you blow it up, the tire will easily glide into the rim without a lot of resistance.
Step 6. With the tire on the floor, carefully feed in the new tube and blow it up slowly and check for any leaks in the new tube. You find leaks by slowly pouring water all over the tube and looking out for any bubbles. Do not screw in the valve nut yet, because you would need to move the tube a little before perfectly placing it between the tire and rim. If you try to tighten the valve nut before completely placing the tube inside, there are chances that your tube might tear a little near that area due to the pull and push during placement.
Step 7. After you are confident about the placement of the new tube inside your tire and rim, tighten the valve nut. Carefully begin lifting the tire lip over the rim on each side. Alternate this maneuver from one direction and slowly add inch by inch over the rim.
Step 8. Once you have the tire over the rim, you can start inflating the tire. Inflate the tire slowly and keep checking the pressure. Avoid overfilling the tire with air. You may also hear a pop-like sound when the pressure forces the bead into place. Again, this is not always the case, so even if you do not hear anything, you are good to go.
Changing the motorcycle tire for the first time might require more effort than you would imagine. This process needs a little muscle power and little patience. Do not worry if you end up scratching your rims; try doing the whole process on cardboard or a rubber mat to prevent any scratches. Once you’ve changed a few tires, this task becomes more of mindful activity.
Kenneth Campbell is our writer at Motorcycle Larry and he is one of the most efficient individuals in the office. He is a graduate of Wisconsin University where he studied engineering. His love for motorbikes encouraged him to take up the course. Kenneth is highly knowledgeable and up-to-date when it comes to bikes.