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Old 07-29-2013, 08:26 PM   #1
jimbeauxk OP
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Lessons From a First Time Changing Tires

So I decided to do my own tires (first time) this weekend on my 2012 GSA and thought I'd share a few things I learned for those who are considering giving it a go.

1. The first time is not as easy as youtube would lead you to believe, and I understand that many of you may have mothers who can spoon a tire with a cigarette in one hand and a beer in the other, I'm not one of them. It's a two hour job that will probably cost you an entire weekend the first time, but I believe it will only get easier. It can't be any harder than I made it, that's for sure.

2. Use lube and spring for the Motion Pro curved spoon (or two). The rear tire is the toughest, I resorted to ratchet-strapping it up after wrestling with it for a day, then it popped right on. I do understand that using straps, etc. is blasphemy, but, oh the joy when it slipped onto the rim at 2am on Saturday night. I was spent. My mistake trying to spoon it on was always on the final third, I'd be on the far side of the wheel, across from where I was spooning, levering the bead out rather than being on the near side levering the bead down. And had I c-clamped the bead under the rim in the first place (I learned this before moving on to the front tire), I wouldn't have been fighting it over and over. And over.

3. Lowes carrys a piece in the socket section made by Kobalt called a 1/2" Quick Release Adapter ($5.97, item # 55370). It's ever so slightly less than the proper 9/16" hex, but worked ideally for me to get the front axle out. Needs a male to female adapter, but that's a somewhat common piece in a toolbox. I scoured the land for something that would work and that's all I found. BTW, I have two spark plug pullers in my garage, but both have a circular end on the inside that prevented me from reversing it and sticking an extension through so I could use the back end. Not sure where the rest of you who do that bought your spark plug pullers, maybe I was looking in the wrong places? I don't own a welder, either, so brazing an axle frankentool was not an option.

4. When reinstalling your TORX bolts back onto the brake calipers and tightening your pinch bolt on the fork, lay off the juice. These things are not being received by a full threading to the bolt neck, and the law of physics says while the bottom half is locked into the threads and the top half is not, over torquing the bolt will twist and shear the top half off like a piece of liquorice. I spent this evening with a bolt extractor, removing the bottom half of the OEM pinch bolt from inside the fork, this after thinking that by using a torque wrench I was doing the right thing. PITA, lesson learned. Tomorrow I'll pick up a handful of new bolts from the dealership and toss the ones in the calipers out, I am fearful that even though they are installed, they may have twisted slightly and compromised their integrity. Couldn't find M8x35 hardened steel bolts at a hardware store. Someone said it best when they said treat those bolts like the faucet on a yard hose, firm it up so the water stops flowing, and that's about what the proper torque should be. I now understand what they meant.

jimbeauxk screwed with this post 07-29-2013 at 08:54 PM
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Old 07-29-2013, 09:18 PM   #2
JimVonBaden
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This might help next time, you do not need the machine.

http://www.jimvonbaden.com/Tire_Change.html

For the caliper bolts, until you at least have the feel, use a torque wrench. 24NM is not much at all.

Jim
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Old 07-29-2013, 09:28 PM   #3
VEGASGSA
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It's a lovely story..thank you..

It gets easier..I promise...even now though...I bump in to one that gives me trouble..ans I've done plenty..

Rassle a Kenda Big Block in the winter..that'll make you sell your bike..
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Old 07-29-2013, 09:33 PM   #4
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If you are working that hard at it something is wrong. Biggest mistake I see is not having the bead in the groove. Start with one iron and have a helper hold that bead down, remember, wherever you are trying to slide the bead over the rim with the other iron, the bead on the opposite side of the tire MUST be down in the groove of the rim or you are going to go nowhere. Not just under the rim, but DOWN IN THE GROOVE IN THE MIDDLE OF THE WHEEL.

I have changed probably over a hundred tires and I have never needed to use the ratchet strap trick, not even sure what that is.

It will get easier I promise!

And I use these irons.



I've tried different ones, and the flat thin profile of these are just the ticket.

Also I use pieces of an old oil bottle cut up to protect the rim from scratches.

Hope this helps!
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Old 07-29-2013, 09:34 PM   #5
JimVonBaden
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VEGASGSA View Post
It's a lovely story..thank you..

It gets easier..I promise...even now though...I bump in to one that gives me trouble..ans I've done plenty..

Rassle a Kenda Big Block in the winter..that'll make you sell your bike..
I have an oil filled electric heater that I rest the tires on prior to install in the winter. Not as good as a hot summer sun, but every bit helps!

Jim
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Old 07-29-2013, 10:17 PM   #6
jimbeauxk OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JimVonBaden View Post
This might help next time, you do not need the machine.

http://www.jimvonbaden.com/Tire_Change.html

For the caliper bolts, until you at least have the feel, use a torque wrench. 24NM is not much at all.

Jim
Thanks Jim, I revisited your page many times over the weekend in an effort to crack the code, appreciate you posting it. One of the caviats to using a longer lever as you did is that you have to have the wheel stabilized. I have the Harbor Freight wheel changer without the motorcycle attachment and I can't say that it did much good other than breaking the bead. That ended up being a 2 minute job. But kneeling on the wheel while trying to negotiate the large red lever around the rim was not fruitful.

And with the torque wrench, I must be using it incorrectly. I hand tightened the bolts down firm, then went to the torque wrench, and never got any indication that I hit the mark. Maybe there's an art to it.
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Old 07-29-2013, 10:19 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by AviatorTroy View Post
If you are working that hard at it something is wrong.
You have no idea how many times I quoted that verbatim this weekend.
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Old 07-29-2013, 10:23 PM   #8
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If you're struggling, you might want to look up how to use wire ties to pinch the tire together before slipping it on the rim (helps the tire lip in the rim channel), I mostly use Mitas E09 Dakar tires these days (very stiff) and after a brief attempt to pry the first one on like I would a TKC (one lip at a time), I zipped it up and it popped the whole tire right on in 5 minutes (I use a bit of soap water for lube and two MP tire irons). Makes it almost too easy, so I never bothered to try again without them.

Each time I've had to use a ratchet strap to seat the bead.
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Old 07-29-2013, 10:48 PM   #9
jimbeauxk OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BostonGS View Post
If you're struggling, you might want to look up how to use wire ties to pinch the tire together before slipping it on the rim (helps the tire lip in the rim channel), I mostly use Mitas E09 Dakar tires these days (very stiff) and after a brief attempt to pry the first one on like I would a TKC (one lip at a time), I zipped it up and it popped the whole tire right on in 5 minutes (I use a bit of soap water for lube and two MP tire irons). Makes it almost too easy, so I never bothered to try again without them.

Each time I've had to use a ratchet strap to seat the bead.
Yep, I ended up strapping up the rear tire in the end and it popped right on. Almost like cheating.
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Old 07-29-2013, 10:50 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BostonGS View Post
If you're struggling, you might want to look up how to use wire ties to pinch the tire together before slipping it on the rim (helps the tire lip in the rim channel), I mostly use Mitas E09 Dakar tires these days (very stiff) and after a brief attempt to pry the first one on like I would a TKC (one lip at a time), I zipped it up and it popped the whole tire right on in 5 minutes (I use a bit of soap water for lube and two MP tire irons). Makes it almost too easy, so I never bothered to try again without them.

Each time I've had to use a ratchet strap to seat the bead.
I swear "ZIP TIES" saved my sanity changing tires the first time.

I tried all the tips on youtube and that was the one worked.

next time I changed tires... BAM, done. it went so smooth after using the "lessons learned" from the first.

and I agree with the OP... it seems everyone out there makes it look/sound likes it no sweat... BS, it's CRAZY if you've never done it before or helped another. seriously. perhaps they've forgotten their first time, or their first time was a "shared moment" with others. don't know but when performing the whole shebang solo as the first time experience, it's really just isn't all that basic and simple.

ZIP TIES to the rescue!
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Old 07-29-2013, 10:54 PM   #11
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I still hate installing tires.

Sometimes they go right on, sometimes they fight like hell.

I've done plenty but it's probably my least favourite chore.
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Old 07-30-2013, 05:36 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimbeauxk View Post
But kneeling on the wheel while trying to negotiate the large red lever around the rim was not fruitful.
Everyone has their own techniques that work for them, but I do all my tire changes using tire irons with the wheel laying on a 3 ft. x 3 ft. piece of plywood on my garage floor. I stand on the tire beads as I lever them around the rim, keeping them in place until the next bite and just work my way around.

This should get a lot easier for you with practice. From start to finish, including R&R of the wheels from my GSA, it's about a 45 minute task for me when changing both tires. And the post-maintenance beer tastes that much better knowing you did the job right yourself.
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Old 07-30-2013, 06:39 AM   #13
JimVonBaden
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimbeauxk View Post
And with the torque wrench, I must be using it incorrectly. I hand tightened the bolts down firm, then went to the torque wrench, and never got any indication that I hit the mark. Maybe there's an art to it.
Are you sure you were setting the torque to NM instead of foot pounds?

Jim
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Old 07-30-2013, 08:04 AM   #14
jimbeauxk OP
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Jim, this morning I went down to check what the last torque setting on my wrench used was, and it was correct. For grins, I gently turned it on the pinch bolt, and the bolt gave again, but didn't break. So I backed it out, and what I'm finding are the internal/female threads are coming off, one thread at a time... This is getting really frustrating. So I've apparently stripped off the internal threads. Not sure what my next solution will be, but I'm heading on a two week trip mid August, so I need to address this fairly quickly. For the time being, I may get a longer bolt and lock nut it on the backside. Am I a candidate for retapping? Oy, I don't know if I'm qualified to start making permanent changes to the bike.
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Old 07-30-2013, 08:09 AM   #15
VEGASGSA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimbeauxk View Post
Jim, this morning I went down to check what the last torque setting on my wrench used was, and it was correct. For grins, I gently turned it on the pinch bolt, and the bolt gave again, but didn't break. So I backed it out, and what I'm finding are the internal/female threads are coming off, one thread at a time... This is getting really frustrating. So I've apparently stripped off the internal threads. Not sure what my next solution will be, but I'm heading on a two week trip mid August, so I need to address this fairly quickly. For the time being, I may get a longer bolt and lock nut it on the backside. Am I a candidate for retapping? Oy, I don't know if I'm qualified to start making permanent changes to the bike.
First. Run tap thru of proper size..just to clean everything up...see if that works..

Two. Time Sert...I would prefer this to going up one size and less time consuming.

Three. Go up one size..
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