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gbc 11-12-2018 05:53 AM

Tire Mounting
I have decided I have taken my last motorcycle tire to the shop to be mounted. I have a balancing/truing rack and weights coming in this week from Amazon. I already have a good set of spoons wheel protectors on hand. My theory is simple, if the job is screwed up, you don't have far to go to bitch. Just wondering how many on this site do their own tires.............

KC1961 11-12-2018 06:18 AM

I've been changing my own tyres for decades. When I had plastic fantastics I used to take the front wheels to a dealer for balancing but I've never bothered doing so with my more recent bikes. Sometimes however, my rear tyres wear unevenly so I'm now thinking of buying a balancing frame and balancing my wheels from now on.

Hedgepig 11-12-2018 08:01 AM

Been fitting my own tyres for years , started when I was about 12 years old on dirt bikes with pre chewed rims . Only recently started doing my own balancing on a static rig . And yes you don't have to go far to curse the fitter .

Back2-2 11-12-2018 08:23 AM

I have never in over 50 years taken a tire / wheel to the shop for replace or repair. Remove, install or balance - easy peasy.

You will learn from your mistakes. You will get a few skinned knuckles. You will pinch a tube or two. You will swear that they sent you a tire that is not the right size and there is no way it's going to fit the rim. Then you will take a break and it will all work out like its supposed to.

Few tips.
Put tire in the sun to warm & soften
Wear gloves.
Use spray bottle of liquid dish soap - some people use talcum powder.
Get some plastic rim protects and good 3 long tire tools.
The little bracket that hooks a spoke and holds the tire rip down on the opposite side you are working.
I use knee cups and thick piece of foam cut out in the middle.
I use my knees to push the tire down into the bead as you work tire on.

I have a tire changing rack that I have yet to use but everyone says they are great.

Good luck. The satisfaction is nice that you do your own work and no one else has messed with your stuff:wink2:

Felony 11-12-2018 12:05 PM

I started with spoons and such and now have a NoMar(expensive) manual changer and a Marc Parnes balancing setup. I changed the tires on my Chevy HHR with the NoMar as well. The tooling will never pay for itself, but the convenience made it worthwhile for me. I don't ride enough miles to really warrant doing my own tires, but I don't have to travel anywhere.

BonnieBlack 11-12-2018 09:47 PM

I mount my own tires. Done it many times, still not good at it. Pinched a tube last summer so got to do that one twice :(

But, mounting them myself is less hassle/downtime than using a motorcycle shop. And I save some money. And in general, I have trust issues and don't like others working on my bike/cars when I can help it.

There's a good thread at

Ntnbutrbl 11-12-2018 11:11 PM

Here too; have a home-made bead breaker, air comp, two spoons and soap solution lube. I use small pieces of cardboard to prevent alloy rim damage. Balancing needs no tools; just put the wheel loosely on the front/rear axle, let the heavy part go to the bottom and add stick-on weights from a car parts store as needed. I do car tires too with a home-made balancer and can easily replace TPMS senders; break the bead only on the valve stem side to make access.

It's nice too, to be able to do this stuff not only to save a few bucks but to do it in less time than it takes to drive to and from somewhere and wait for others to do the work.

gbc 11-13-2018 05:54 AM

Been there
I have changed a number of tires on the many project bikes that have come through my garage and I too have pinched a tube or two. I found when I purchased a good set of long handle spoons, with good flat curved heads, this stopped. I am due for tires on my MG California Touring before spring, that should be the real test for me. Big tubeless mothers.........

Doberperson 11-13-2018 07:56 AM

My son and I change our own tires and use a static balancing rig. You can purchase tire mounting lube at the usual auto supply stores and it's well worth it. It's not as messy as soap/water solutions and is a very good lube which makes the mounting go very easily. Once the beads are broken down, you can also use the lube to help with the dismount as well.

Trouble with getting the beads over the rim usually result from not having the rest of the tire down in the drop-center portion of the wheel. Make sure it's down in there and the mounting goes easily.

Unkle Krusty 11-13-2018 11:23 AM

I always change my own. In my past life I showed lots of guys how to do it on their dirt bikes.
Lately I have taken them to the bike shop for balancing, and tell them it is a $10- job just for me.
If a tube is being used, I suggest putting some air in it until it just takes a round shape. That keeps it away from the tyre irons.
I wrap my irons with tape where they contact the rims. On the wheels with spokes, we used to wrap a short length of solder around a spoke or two.
To break the bead from the rim, a one foot length of 4 X 2 placed vertical on the edge of the tyre, and a long lever will bust it free. The short end of the lever can go under a vehicle bumper. I have a solid upright post with an anchor point, that I use.


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