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Thread: Portable Tire Irons

  1. #1
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    Portable Tire Irons

    I have a tubeless tire repair kit I carry ever where I go. I'd like to start carrying a tube and tire irons on my travels as well. In a recent BMWMOA article, one recommended an older tire irons due to it's portability size and strength. I can not find the magazine. Does anyone know which tire iron I am talking about or any suggestions on a good dependable tire iron to carry while on the rode?

    Thank You

  2. #2
    Registered User Emoto's Avatar
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    I carry a pair of the commonly available short ones. Similar to this: http://www.amazon.com/Motion-Pro-08-...ons+motorcycle

    Have you changed motorcycle tires before? If not, I recommend trying it a few times at home, so you can get used to not pinching tubes.
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    Breaking the bead will be the hard part - I use "C" clamps and some pieces of wood to help protect the rims.

  4. #4
    Registered User Emoto's Avatar
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    If the wheels are tube type, bead breaking shouldn't be an issue. If tubeless then yes.
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    #4869 DennisDarrow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Emoto View Post
    If the wheels are tube type, bead breaking shouldn't be an issue. If tubeless then yes.
    Surely NOT to argue; but tube type tires can be and are a total pain also when breaking the bead. Often now adays one encounters tubeless tires on tube type rims and then there is a real problem.........An old fashioned method for breaking the bead is to put the bike on the center stand, remove the wheel/tire, tilt the bike over in order to slide the tire under one leg of the center stand, and then lower the bike/leg slowly and carefully down onto the rim and tire.......breaking the bead......NO this is not as hazardous as it may sound and is/was a very common method used even in the shop.....Having a second pair of hands is helpful but not really required.....God bless.......Dennis

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    Dennis is 100% correct. Breaking the bead on a tube-type wheel is very difficult - especially on the road.

    What I did is to cut out two pieces of plywood, 1/2" to 3/4" thick, and cut them "sort of crescent shaped" (concave) on one edge to match the curvature of the wheel diameter and about 6" long to spread out the pressure. Curvature doesn't have to be exact, or even close. Then, taking a "C-clamp" I put 1 piece of plywood actually on the rim on one side, and the other piece of plywood on the other side on the tire itself, and then start the clamping process - 1 side at a time. I do this with the wheel still on the bike as it holds it still for me to use my two hands to hold the pieces of wood until the clamp can take over. After a few turns with the clamp handle, the tire will pop towards the center and then that bead will be easy then to push over all around the diameter of the bead. Then I do the other side the same way. Works pretty easily when you are by yourself.

    Then I remove the wheel from the bike, and finish the job on the floor or ground. Thankfully, I have never had to do this on the road as I have never had a flat while on the road - in 45 years of riding!

    jlc

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    Unfunded content provider tommcgee's Avatar
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    The tire irons with the rounded spoon shaped ends seem to me to work better on tubed tires than the more pointed irons. Less chance of pinching the tube, I think.
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    Quote Originally Posted by tommcgee View Post
    The tire irons with the rounded spoon shaped ends seem to me to work better on tubed tires than the more pointed irons. Less chance of pinching the tube, I think.
    To be honest, I have liked the ones that came from BMW with my '78 R100/7. they have somewhat of a spoon shape, but on that end, they also have a curvature that allows them to "catch" the rim, or tire bead and not slip off in either direction.

    The other pair I have I have had for about 35 years, and are more flat with each end shaped differently, one rounded and the other tapered down a bit. Ok, but the BMW ones work much better, just aren't long enough!

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    Registered User dmftoy1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jimmylee View Post
    To be honest, I have liked the ones that came from BMW with my '78 R100/7. they have somewhat of a spoon shape, but on that end, they also have a curvature that allows them to "catch" the rim, or tire bead and not slip off in either direction.

    The other pair I have I have had for about 35 years, and are more flat with each end shaped differently, one rounded and the other tapered down a bit. Ok, but the BMW ones work much better, just aren't long enough!
    I love those - try pricing a set from maxbmw -about choked when I saw $60! I'm never loaning mine out!!

  10. #10
    lubbent
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    long tire irons

    I still have my original BMW irons, but ever since I got a long set (like the first poster mentioned) I consider the BMW iron for emergency use only. The long ones are pretty easy to use, and they have a slightly more pointy tip that actually can be used to help break the bead. The first time I used them it took me half as long as with the BMW irons. I stow mine wrapped in a shop rag in the frame tube under the tank. The shop rag keeps them from rattling and comes in handy anyway. It is critical that you lube the tire to get it on and off. If you carry a chip of soap- like the old bar too small to use in the bath- you can draw on the tire near the bead, add water, and instant lube!

  11. #11
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    If you have room, these work well for breaking the bead
    http://www.motionpro.com/motorcycle/partno/08-0519/
    I have them in the garage and they work on modern tubeless tires pretty well. A 120/70 front is no problem and a 180/55 rear works but takes some effort.
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    Hmmm...I've never had any problem with breaking the bead (if there is one) on my 60/6. I just step on the tire by the rim and it pops down, and in goes the spoon from the original tool kit. Maybe they changed the rim design over the years? My rims are stock spoked ones that came with the bike.
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