Tire Change Tools/Machine

Real tired of paying 15 bucks a pop to get the tires changed, it's pure convienence really, plus tire irons blow--anyhow any one know of a semi-mechanical machine that will assist me in this process--I know someone made one on a thread couple years ago? It attached to a class III receiver hitch?......Ebay?.....:) Ride on.......:thumbsup:

There is a tire changing machine that Harbor freight sells. It's a two part thing and it has to be bolted to the floor.

Tire changing is not really that hard once you get the hang of it. With some practice it becomes relativally easy. It usually only takes me about 10 minutes to change a tire. Without the proper technique it can be a real bear.

Some tires are easier to mount than others. I found that dunlops can stick to the rim when breaking the bead. Kenda's are by far the tightest bead I have come across.

Maxxis are the loosest beads I have come across and are by far the easiest to mount. The only drawback is that my bike will spin the tire on the rim a few degrees if pressure drops below 15 PSI. I can tell because my valve stem is slanted after a ride. No worries, air down and rotate the tire back. I don't even have to "break" the bead, just air down, push on the sidewalls a little bit and then rotate it back.

Another tip is to use straight glycerine soap like dish soap. Wet each bead, one at a time, really well before mounting.

You can latch 1 tire iron under the sprocket when working the tire off with the other tire iron.

I used to hate changing tires as well, but I hunkered down and started doing a few pairs a week and now they come easy; as many have said, you just need to get the technique and the feel down, and after that your golden. I looked at several semi-mechanical and fully automated tire changers, and unless you want to drop $3000 for a Coats, your still going to have to do some of the labor yourself. Or, you can go on ebay and buy a chinese knock-off Coats for $1200 or so.

If you are going to go the manual way, here are some tips I've learned.

Tire removal:

1. Get a decent stand. Either a barrel or a fabricated metal stand will work. I personally use Zip-Ty's tire changing stand as it's fairly portable and very sturdy. I looked at one of the trailer-hitch stands, but they were the same size or bigger than the Zip-Ty stand and I'd always have to have my truck around. The other nice thing about the zip-ty stand is that it's low to the ground so I can get my weight and leverage on the tire to break the bead (read - standing on the edges of the tire with feet 180 degrees apart). *Note* Standing on your tire to break the bead is OK only if you regularly torque your spokes; Otherwise the side-load may very well turn an almost-dead spoke(s) into a very dead spoke(s).

2. Get some beefy tire irons. I prefer to use four tire irons; Two Zip-Ty 'Mighty' tire irons and two of motion pro's second to largest irons (the size below the large black crowbar units). The Zip-Ty units are huge, and because they are circular instead of flat like the motion pro crowbar units they do not flex when under heavy load. The two motion pro irons I use only as placeholders once I've got a bite with the zip-ty unit so that I can remove the zip-ty tire iron and use it on the next bite. The motion pro units are also good because they are flat on one end which is helpful when there just isn't space between the tire and the rim to get a curved iron in.

4. Let the tire sit out in the sun for at least a half of an hour. It makes a WORLD of difference in the flexability of the tire.

Tire Installation:

1. Ditto on letting the new tire sit out in the sun.

2. I've tried the lithium soap and it ends up making a huge mess. I much prefer coating the tube and bead with baby powder, which helps with getting the tire on and helps the tube slide into the tire.

3. If you've go fat hands, buy yourself a stem-snake. That way, instead of bloodying your knuckles trying ot push the stem through the rim hole, you can just pull it through.

4. Add a bit of air to the tube before reinstalling the tire. That way it holds a general shape and is less likely to get caught under the tire or tire irons.

5. When using the tire irons to reinstall the tire, try and only move them to the vertical position or a bit past it (in other words, half way). This way, your garanteed not to pinch the tube. Hopefully the tire will slip down past the iron and onto the rim at this point; if it doesn't, jiggle the iron back and forth around the vertical point to give it some motivation, and at the same time put your foot on it next to the iron and 'motivate' it to get on.

In the end it takes practice and perserverence, but it's worth the work. If you ever go down to Mexico (or any other country for that matter), your going to need to know how to do this. I've never had problems with most any brands of knobbies, but all bets are off with heavy duty tubes or street slicks. The worst tire change of my life involved a set of Maxxis 21/18" sportsman street slicks and well over an hour of work with 2 people; that only barely edged out the installation of a set of Ultra Heavy Duty 4mil tubes (4 times the thickness of stock tubes).

Good luck.

I've changed sportbike tires by hand and using a NoMar changer: http://www.nomartirechanger.com/

Have a buddy that just bought the Harbor Freight changer, which is basically a $49 knock off of the No Mar. Problem with the HF model is that the wheel clamps are metal, whereas the NW changer has nylon cams that quickly and easily clamp hold of the wheel (half the battle.) The other factor that made the NM unit a joy to work with was their leverage bar:

http://www.nomartirechanger.com/06DemountBar.html

The NM unit won't pay for itself as quickly, but you'll save yourself either some frustration or a trip to the powdercoater to fix up those scratched wheels.

Hill5150

I have one I will sell you, its called the speedy Tire Changer, it goes in the receiver of a truck and has a long bar kinda like a regular tire machine $50 bucks you can have it, I only used it once and didn't really like it!

I have Harbor Freight's changer. You don't need to bolt it to the floor. You can bolt it to a 3/4" sheet of plywood. I does make the job a lot easier but I can change tires with or without it.

Hill5150

I have one I will sell you, its called the speedy Tire Changer, it goes in the receiver of a truck and has a long bar kinda like a regular tire machine $50 bucks you can have it, I only used it once and didn't really like it!

Can you post a pic of it? or e-mail me?

I have Harbor Freight's changer. You don't need to bolt it to the floor. You can bolt it to a 3/4" sheet of plywood. I does make the job a lot easier but I can change tires with or without it.

I've been pricing this unit, it's avail just up the road from me at their retail store, the reviews on this sounded good, is it user friendly, or am I wasting my $$

I've been pricing this unit, it's avail just up the road from me at their retail store, the reviews on this sounded good, is it user friendly, or am I wasting my $$

The reviews are true as long as you bolt it down to something like a piece of plywood. I used it for a long time just standing on it's legs to hold it upright while I changed the tires. Even still it was helpful but much better when the machine is bolted down to something. I glad I have it.

I too use baby powder on the tube and sometimes on the tire bead. Soapy water does help but I found WD40 when ever you get to the final parts of the bead works best. Don't worry about WD40 breaking down the rubber. If you ride much at all the tread will be wore out before the tire bead would be broke down by WD40. Besides it evaporates before long anyway.

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