Changing a tire with no tools (or not many tools)

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Changing a tire with no tools (or not many tools)

Postby wa_desert_rat » Sat Jul 30, 2011 8:53 am

You don't need special tools - or even tire irons - to change a tire on your MTB and especially on a 29er.

Removing the tire: First of all I really prefer the quick-release skewers on my MTB hubs. I have one bike (a Trek OCLV with a Marz fork) that doesn't have these, all the rest (including my Deception) do. I highly recommend that if you can change to them, do so. Mainly because if you don't you're going to need some tools to get the wheel free of the bicycle in order to change the tire.

Once the wheel is off, make sure you let all the air out of the inner-tube (if it hasn't lost all its air already). Then sit on the ground or in a comfy chair (if you have one) and put the rim in your lap more-or-less vertical. Run your fingers around the bead (where the rim and the tire edge meet) and get the tire free of the rim. Push the valve stem in (and remove the stem security nut if you use Presta) so the inner tube is loose in the tire casing. At this point I can usually just twist the tire off the rim with my hands. It's a surprisingly loose fit, actually.

Re-installing the tire: I like to put a couple of pumps of air into the inner tube to give it a little shape. Not too much though. Then I push the inner tube into the inside of the tire casing and make sure it's not twisted or deformed. Mate the tire and rim and orient the inner tube's valve with the hole in the rim and push the valve stem through the hole and secure the nut (if Presta).

I hold the rim more-or-less vertially in my lap with a hand on each side and run my fingers along the bead to get one edge (or both edges) into the rim. Once that first bead is inside the rim I start pushing the other bead in just running my fingers along the beads. Often the side I pushed in first will come out of place and I have to start over but it's not a big deal.

The final bit is the most difficult and is usually the point at which you use tire irons (if you remembered to put them in your kit). If you don't have tire irons to push that last five inches of tire bead into the rim then you can do it with your hand by leveraging the tread and simultaneously pushing on the bead. If you have a pocket knife with a flat screwdriver that can make it easier.

Multi-tools with tire irons are available; otherwise it's good to have them. They're easy to lose, however. If you use a screwdriver make sure you don't ruin the inner tube and have to do it all over again.
Last edited by wa_desert_rat on Sat Jul 30, 2011 4:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Chainging a tire with no tools (or not many tools)

Postby bones72751 » Sat Jul 30, 2011 4:10 pm

There are cases, such as wtb wheels and tires or most road bikes, that tire levers are most always needed.

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Re: Changing a tire with no tools (or not many tools)

Postby furiouskittens » Sun Aug 07, 2011 1:41 pm

I use lots of soap/water on the tire. Using that, I don't even need tire irons (levers) and I can run my index finger around the whole wheel, sliding that tire off the rim with ease. It makes it SOOOOO easy, just using soapy water.
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Re: Changing a tire with no tools (or not many tools)

Postby Robertrick » Tue Sep 08, 2015 12:06 am

From that view I have read it.
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