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Given the price of tire changes, I’m considering doing my own when the time comes. I used to dismount wheels and take them into a local shop I trust. BMW is too far away (and $50 per wheel). However, I wonder what’s the minimum setup one needs to do it right without damaging the wheels or having needless frustration.

Advice?
 

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A brand new tire is a pain in the neck even with a proper machine to mount. I went to a shop in Chicago (mostly to learn) that allows you to wrench on your own bike by renting a bay by the hour. They charged me $30 the first time (what I would have paid at the dealer at the time) to show me how to use the machine and their equipment. The guy was around to help as I needed (he ended up doing it for me the first time around). The next couple of times I paid $10 each for the use of their equipment. It got easier each time especially for a tire that had already been mounted but I am not sure I would do it again, especially without proper equipment which takes much of the frustration out. You need a balancing mechanism as well. Good luck, whatever you decide to do.
 
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The minimum setup would be good tire spoons (at least two but three or four would be better) , rim protectors, and soapy water as a lubricant. You can change a tire with these minimums, but it will be tough until you get the hang of it. Watch videos and have someone teach you if possible. You will need patience and self control to not fight and muscle the tire on for best results.

https://www.motionpro.com/product/08-0546

https://www.motionpro.com/product/08-0115

I bought a used No-Mar tire changer a while ago. It has payed for itself in a couple years. It makes the job much easier, but it is still work. I'm now the neighborhood go-to guy for tire changes.

https://www.nomartirechanger.com/

I use a Marc Parnes wheel balancer on a couple car jack stands for balancing. It's a great product.

Motorcycle Wheel Balancer
 

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Mark – 2015 R1200R-LC Exclusive
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I’m a compulsive DIY guy so change my own tyres.

You can get away with nil or minimal use of tyre levers/spoons using the zip-tie method. See YouTube for many examples, but in essence once you have broken both beads you zip tie the tyre so that the two beads are together, effectively creating a single bead that you can work into the tyre-well as you pull the tyre off from the opposite side. Fitting is the opposite sequence. A slimy lubricant is essential (grated soap dissolved in water works well - better than washing up detergent).

Breaking the bead can be done in a number of ways - a plastic spade type with mallet worked around the tyre, a large Irwin clamp, or a lever arrangement such as a length or 2x2 wood with a wedge cut at the bottom and attached to a lever arm fixed to somewhere suitable in your workshop.

A modification I make to the technique for removing the tyre is, once the beads are broken, run a Stanley knife with lino blade (hooked) around the perimeter of the tyre, splitting it into two pieces. Each side can then be pulled off easily, and zip-tying is unnecessary.

For balancing, I too have a Marc Parnes balancing axle (which I place on car stands) and rear wheel adapter, chosen for its quality and the availability of the adapter.

You’ll also need to source wheel weights, and an Aussie milk crate forms the perfect working surface (Every household seems to accumulate one of these, even though they remain the property of the milk company. I ‘inherited’ mine from the previous property owner.)

It probably isn’t a job for weaklings, as tyre carcasses can be pretty stiff, although if you are a Michelin man, I’ve found their carcasses are much more flexible than Metzeler and Pirelli. Dunlop Roadsmarts seem to have very little give when I’ve examined them in the shop (never bought a Dunlop tyre though since 1972 when a pair of brand new K81’s slipped out from under me ...).
 

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I'm also a big fan of MotionPro tools. This combo set makes bead-breaking a cinch. And this combo iron plus this adapter work great as a 3rd tire iron, axle wrench, and socket wrench. I guess the axle wrench by itself isn't much use on a Roadster, but I used mine a lot on my F800GS. For home tire changes, I have a simple inexpensive tire stand.

For me, removing and installing tires is more skill than brute strength (of which I have none). It's kinda like competitive weight lifting, as much technique as strength. They're a lot easier when warm, so in lieu of riding a ways to heat it up for removal, or for new ones to be installed, I just throw 'em up on the roof in the sun for an hour or three. A piece of thin plastic cut out of a yogourt container or similar works as a rim protector. I found the MotorPro protectors cracked after a couple of uses.
 

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makes a difference well here in the cooler south of New Zealand to leave a new tyre in the sun till the last minute before installing to the rim.
 
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MotoGuild ...

I went to a shop in Chicago (mostly to learn) that allows you to wrench on your own bike by renting a bay by the hour.
... Chicago, is that the place?
 

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I am just in the process of gathering all the bits to do my own changes but trying to find out if a specific bead breaker will fit a 190/20 section tyre is the stumbling block at the moment as no one I have asked knows, they all say it works with wheels from 15" to 19".
 

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I am just in the process of gathering all the bits to do my own changes but trying to find out if a specific bead breaker will fit a 190/20 section tyre is the stumbling block at the moment as no one I have asked knows, they all say it works with wheels from 15" to 19".

Before I had the No-Mar station, I used a couple large C-clamps in addition to spoons to help break the bead if it was really tough. Like this:
https://cdn.mscdirect.com/global/images/ProductImages/0698749-23.jpg


Panzermann mentioned using a large Irwin clamp which would probably work well too.
 

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I use this behemoth at home for breaking beads when I don't feel like exercising my grip. Weighs a ton and is a bit cumbersome, but gets the job done. It's about 9" corner to corner, max opening is about 6". It'll easily do a 150, but won't fit around the 180 on the Roadster. I think it's cast iron. Would make a good boat anchor.
 

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Moto Guild in City of Chicago. Haven’t been there in a while. I think it’s a good concept. They recently expanded so must be doing ok.
I've been learning to work on my bikes at Moto Guild since they conceptualized and opened for business, which practically coincided with learning to ride -- great deal!

USA shops in San Francisco, San Jose and Chicago.

Ride on!
 

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I'm on the other side of the table on this. When I was a kid riding the US enduro and ISDT qualifier circuit circuit I could change a tire on a Husqvarna in 9+ long and painful minutes. Experts could do it in a fraction of that. I still have scars on my knuckles. These days it goes to the shop. Life is too short and a BMW R1200R is no Husky 360.
 

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I’m a compulsive DIY guy so change my own tyres.

You can get away with nil or minimal use of tyre levers/spoons using the zip-tie method. See YouTube for many examples, but in essence once you have broken both beads you zip tie the tyre so that the two beads are together, effectively creating a single bead that you can work into the tyre-well as you pull the tyre off from the opposite side. Fitting is the opposite sequence. A slimy lubricant is essential (grated soap dissolved in water works well - better than washing up detergent).

Breaking the bead can be done in a number of ways - a plastic spade type with mallet worked around the tyre, a large Irwin clamp, or a lever arrangement such as a length or 2x2 wood with a wedge cut at the bottom and attached to a lever arm fixed to somewhere suitable in your workshop.

A modification I make to the technique for removing the tyre is, once the beads are broken, run a Stanley knife with lino blade (hooked) around the perimeter of the tyre, splitting it into two pieces. Each side can then be pulled off easily, and zip-tying is unnecessary.

For balancing, I too have a Marc Parnes balancing axle (which I place on car stands) and rear wheel adapter, chosen for its quality and the availability of the adapter.

You’ll also need to source wheel weights, and an Aussie milk crate forms the perfect working surface (Every household seems to accumulate one of these, even though they remain the property of the milk company. I ‘inherited’ mine from the previous property owner.)

It probably isn’t a job for weaklings, as tyre carcasses can be pretty stiff, although if you are a Michelin man, I’ve found their carcasses are much more flexible than Metzeler and Pirelli. Dunlop Roadsmarts seem to have very little give when I’ve examined them in the shop (never bought a Dunlop tyre though since 1972 when a pair of brand new K81’s slipped out from under me ...).


Reading your post Panzer, you almost had me thinking I should do the next tyre change myself, but as you noted that ”it is probably not a job for weaklings” that counts me out.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 
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Reading your post Panzer, you almost had me thinking I should do the next tyre change myself, but as you noted that ”it is probably not a job for weaklings” that counts me out.
I'll choose whether to do it myself based on which tire I need to change. If it's got an inner tube, I'll do it for the practice and to maybe to try different tools and techniques (if I figure out a way I can do it without using profanity, I've solved it). Else I'm happy to pay the tire shop to do it. Well on the BMW I don't even have to pay for the back wheel. My tire shop mounts free, wheels off the bike, and it's simple to remove and reinstall the BMW rear wheel in their parking lot.

Here's one way I've broken a tire bead:
https://www.instagram.com/p/BYBoldRFhkq/

Easiest is with a proper tire machine bead breaker tool though.
 

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Mark – 2015 R1200R-LC Exclusive
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My tire shop mounts free, wheels off the bike, and it's simple to remove and reinstall the BMW rear wheel in their parking lot.

Here's one way I've broken a tire bead:
https://www.instagram.com/p/BYBoldRFhkq/

Easiest is with a proper tire machine bead breaker tool though.

For most bike shops in Australia, the quoted price includes fitting (except my local BMW dealer, who charges something like an extra $40 per tyre, fitted to the bike).

For tyres I buy locally, I negotiate a discount for 'carry it out the door' rather than fitment - they knock off at least $20 per tyre (the accessory part of the business gets charged a workshop fee in excess of that, so it's win-win). I also play the 'senior' card for good measure when asking for the discount. :grin2:
 
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Indy shops around here charge more for installation if you buy the tires elsewhere. Probably true most places.

@davidji, I have seen somewhere (the where escapes me just now) one of those 'gone-wrong' videos of someone using construction lumber and a truck as a bead breaker. I must have a sick sense of humour - it made me laugh out loud, kind of like those videos of dufuses trying to load a Harley into the back of a pickup truck using a too-steep ramp, and the inevitable carnage that ensues. "Here, hold my beer and watch this!" :laugh2::laugh2::laugh2:
 

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I also play the 'senior' card for good measure when asking for the discount. :grin2:
I often get 'carded' when I ask for the discount, despite being well past legit 'senior' age. :wink2:
(Carding is a term used here to describe the practise of asking young people for proof-of-age in bars)
 

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Indy shops around here charge more for installation if you buy the tires elsewhere. Probably true most places.
I think many shops here won't even install tires you didn't buy there. My tire shop has good prices though. Near work, but not near home, so I always ride in.

What age is required for those senior discounts?
 

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I think many shops here won't even install tires you didn't buy there. My tire shop has good prices though. Near work, but not near home, so I always ride in.
Usually the same here if it's a tire shop. I was referring more to repair shops.

What age is required for those senior discounts?
Depends :laugh2::laugh2:

Anywhere from 55 to 65.
 
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