My Epic Fail Part Deux / Victory! - Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
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post #1 of 4 Old 05-25-2015, 07:49 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Avondale Az
Posts: 491
My Epic Fail Part Deux / Victory!

Ok, I was feeling pretty defeated yesterday when I wrote about my failure to mount up my new tires. I don't handle failure well and have always been able to work on my vehicles. Have I made mistakes? Absolutely but never have I been completely unable to finish a job. But today was a new day and I went out to the garage determined to see if I could salvage this debacle. The first thing I checked was to see if the tire was still leaking and guess what, it was not. But I was feeling like I needed to get on top of this failure and succeed so I dismounted the tire again and cleaned the rim and bead, put it back together again and just before airing it up I dabbed a little clear silicone on the divot I had made in the bead. I aired it up and WOOHOO!! it held air with no trace of a leak.
I got a lot of support and encouragement from other Stromtroopers here, thank you very much, and I listened to what you all said, I slowed down and tried not to fight the whole process. I worked on technique over brute strength and had a much better experience.
Feeling much more confident now I moved on to the front tire. Aside from struggling to get the bead broke, that one worked pretty easily.
Here are some of the successes and failures that I had through this whole experience.
First off, the cheapo 2x4 bead breaker works like a champ. Easily the best success of the whole undertaking.
I had much less success with the Zip tie mounting system popularized on YouTube. I bought these big honkin zip ties at Harbor Freight and I put a whole bunch around the tire and really had them cinched up pretty good, but no joy! In the end I cut them off and mounted them the old fashioned way.
Tire irons and rim protectors. I bought cheapo EBay rim protectors and they were soft and easily damaged. They were also thick and hard to stretch the bead of the tire over. The tire irons were a 3 piece set from Motion pro, eh kinda short and small, they hurt your hands to apply a lot of pressure on. There are probably better choices out there.
I also scratched up my rear rim pretty good on the first day because I was struggling with the rim protectors and got frustrated and quit using them. Much better at handling them on day two. No marks on the front rim at all.
I bought a cheapo wheel balancer on EBay and that also worked very well.
So, would I do it again? Probably , like most things you get better with practice. Am I glad it's over? You bet!

My two wheel history
'72 Honda XL250
'73 Yamaha RD350
'75 Yamaha XT500
'76 Yamaha XS650
'78 Yamaha XS750
'77 BMW R100/7
'76 Triumph Bonneville T140-V
'07 Triumph Bonneville America
'11 Suzuki V Strom 650
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post #2 of 4 Old 05-27-2015, 01:26 PM
CruisnGrrl's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: Eastern ontario
Posts: 2,016

In a pinch I change my own tires. It's a 2 to 3 hour affair per tire. If my favourite tire shop which is 2 hours away is hosting a track day (1/2 hour away) I take it to them as they charge 15$ (can't remember if that is each or a pair) which is significantly cheaper than the local dealership which quoted me $80 a wheel to bring my wheels and have them do it.

DL1000 K4
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post #3 of 4 Old 05-28-2015, 10:05 AM
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Pasadna area
Posts: 13,762
I was a whizz at the tube type most of the time but tubeless I get help. Either at a buddy's with the tools or the tire shop where mount and balance is part of the cost.
It's kinda like knowing which battles I'm likely to win and fight those.
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post #4 of 4 Old 05-28-2015, 11:30 AM
KZDon's Avatar
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Toronto - way way way too much traffic
Posts: 1,218
Well done Johnny B. I think it's some sort of right of passage to change your own tires. I did it for the first time last year.

I have no place for large devices or tire change stations, so small was in. I used the Motion Pro - Bead Pro for bead breaking and tire spoons. They're a little spendy but work incredibly well and will last forever.

I did the 24" zip tie method as well. That, with a spray bottle and lots of soapy water, and a milk crate to balance the rim on, worked well. (I can't emphasize enough the value of tons of soapy water to ease the way to success) Next time I'm at a bike show I'll splurge and get some of the Motion Pro rim guards, but I consider the scratches on the rim badges of honour for now. I could also use one more tire lever/spoon, as a large flathead screwdriver came into use - probably not well-advised. Balancing was done with balance beads - they seem to have worked.

'04 650, and goshdarnit it's fun - matte silver (#9 in the Silver 'Strom Club)
farewell to an '81 KZ550, '83 GPz750, '83 V45 Sabre, R-Reg GT380, '84 GPz550, early '70s DT175, and a '72 Peugeot 102
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