Getting tire bead deep into rim drop center DOT tire wr250r

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by west5786, Mar 31, 2021.

  1. west5786

    west5786 Adventurer

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    Aug 1, 2015
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    Wyoming
    Got my first flat with my WR250R. Went to start it after sitting for winter to try out the new seat and had a big screw in the rear tire. Decided to use the opportunity to change from stock gearing and to learn how to change tubes trail side style.
    Have watches as many videos as I can find and feel that I have the technique down pretty well except for one thing. I am convinced I cannot get the tire bead down deep enough in the rim drop center. I am 180-190 pounds and when I stand on the tire the sidewall barely moves. All the videos I watch people mention this and say, “make sure you get the bead in the center” and “just kneel on it and make sure to check it as you spoon.”
    My sidewalls, on the stock Trail Wings, just want to push into the rim so hard I can’t make the space I need to get the tire on. The videos I see people are pushing the tire sidewalls down with a single thumb, and when my bike has a flat you don’t even know because the tire is stiff enough to keep its shape.
    First attempt I ended up having to use a c-clamp to close the bead to get the tire on, but pinched the tube. Before the clamp I was sure I would rip the tire. Trying to learn to do it with just spoons and a trail bead buddy, the small one, so I tried another tube today. Went better, but still had the hardest time getting the bead to drop into the channel, and when it does I am sure it is not enough. Are the sidewalls on these just really stiff being DOT tires?
    I have considered maybe a hybrid way of the zip tie method, just do the first part of the tire with ties and spoon the rest on and cut them, I could do that on the trail. Don’t want to lug around a c-clamp.
    The tire was warmed by the sun first and there was plenty of lube, I am convinced I just can’t gain the final clearance because the beads are trying to sit against the rim and not dropping down.
    Any advice from the tire change gurus? There have got to be tons of guys and gals that make these tires look easy.
    #1
  2. 211john

    211john Been here awhile

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    I don't remember what trail wings are like. I have found that the more tires I change the easier it gets. The first few times it was really hard. After doing a dozen or so it's much easier. It sounds like you are doing it right. Some tires are tougher than others.
    #2
  3. foxtrapper

    foxtrapper Long timer

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    Do you have the bead broken free?

    rather sounds like you don’t. The trailwing is not a stiff sidewall tire.

    And the valve core out of the stem.
    #3
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  4. drneo

    drneo mmm... delicious

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    #4
  5. vanislejay

    vanislejay Been here awhile

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    The wood blocks would be good. I just use a couple sockets or small pieces of conduit stuffed between the bead and the rim. I put in a few as I go to make sure the most of the bead is dropped down as possible. I don't think it sits in the center as much as just off the edge enough to get that bit of space.
    Maybe you have too much air in your tube. It takes a balance of enough air to avoid the pinch vs. allowing the space for the tire to stay off the bead. Also make sure your bead lock is loose enough to allow the tire the space to drop.
    #5
  6. west5786

    west5786 Adventurer

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    Bead was definitely broken and no bead lock to worry about.

    I didn’t see I had gotten replies and needed to get on it today again as the weather has been super nice. I got my stuff and went out to the front yard. Left the second tube I tried inflated some overnight to make sure it didn’t slow leek. It was fine.

    Looked at the wheel, thinking maybe I can put two zip ties on each side of the valve stem, each about 4-5 inches from the stem, with the tube in the tire and cinch them down to bring the tire beads together. After fiddling I realized having both sides of the tire at the start wasn’t going to work.
    Decided I would try the zip tie method all the way around. Tube was sticking out too far to work, even after removing more and more air, and I could tell there was no way the tire would fit over the wheel. With this rim and tire I think one would have to get the beads of the tire to actually touch to get this to work. I’m sure it could be done, but I didn’t want to.
    So then I decided to get the first bead on with the normal spoon method. Then I took a spoon to either side of the valve and spooned the beginning of the second bead on. I then slid a single zip tie between the rim and tire and cinched down the bead beginning. Then I continued to spoon on normally. I could tell with the beginning of the second bead being tied I could get the tire much further into the drop center. Top part still was tight but nothing like before. Got it popped on and sat the bead and now I can move on with the rest of the work.
    I was having a hard time taking small bites towards the end. I found I had to almost lay the spoon to be inserted on the spokes, pop it under the closest spot I could near the holding spoon, and give it a little shimmy towards the other spoon to take the smallest bites. This is something I found handy and haven’t really noticed it mentioned on instructional videos, but could have missed it.
    I will have to check out the wood block link, but don’t have time tonight. Will try to post a pic of how I did this, I have never posted photos before.

    Attached Files:

    #6
  7. Motopsychoman

    Motopsychoman Not a total poseur Supporter

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    Bead wedges make a huge difference. I use some 1/2" HDPE that I had laying around, cut into 1"x1" squares. Two on each side of the tire, opposite where I'm trying to spoon. Wood works too.

    Tire lube. Use lots. RuGylde is about $15 a gallon. I carry a 4oz bottle with me on the road. About enough to change 2 tires.

    I'm not much of a gadget guy, but I bought a Bead Buddy II last year and it has made the job of changing very stiff sidewalled 50/50 tires much quicker.
    #7
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  8. Yinzer Moto

    Yinzer Moto Long timer Supporter

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    X2 on the valve core.

    The trail wing is a fairly soft sidewall tire. You need to push it down and at the same time, on the opposite side of the wheel, pry the bead up a bit with the tire lever. Once you have some started with the lever, the other side will stay in the drop center. With some practice, there should be no need for the zip ties or any other special tool.
    #8