Yeahhh, I know. Changing a tire on a dirt bike is a total pain in the ass!
Trying to get that tire off the rim is like wrestling with an angry, giant squid.
But there is an easy way to change a dirt bike tire that will only take you a few minutes at worst. At best you can get it down to only 40 seconds!
How to Change a Dirt Bike Tire in Minutes!
Its called the Rabaconda Gen 4 – 3 Minute Tire Changer.
And its changed the game!
Check out this rider use the Rabaconda to change a tire in only 40 seconds!!
The Rabaconda is easy to setup, easy to use and it will fit any size tire between 16 – 21 inches, which covers all dirt bike tire sizes.
It also can be used for both tubed and bib mousse tires.
The company also works closely with a whole bunch of professional riders to get feedback to improve the system.
Their 3 previous models were good but the Gen 4 is the best by far.
I bought this tool and never looked back. I love it. I’ll never have to wrestle with a tire in my garage again. Highly recommended!
The instructions that come with it aren’t very good but its easy to figure out and make sure you watch all the videos on their website as they will show you everything you need to know.
There are other tire changers on the market but Rabaconda has put way more effort and thought into perfecting the design then any other tire changer I’ve seen. I only buy the best tools so I don’t need to pay twice.
Tire Changing Stands
If you can’t afford a tire changer, at least get yourself a tire changing stand. One of the reasons why changing a tire is so difficult is because you have to work on the ground.
A tire changing stand changes that and it will let you change a tire at your height.
I recommend the Tusk tire changing stand because it is adjustable to your chosen height. Here’s one in action –
How to Change a Dirt Bike Tire the Hard Way>>
You will need the following tools –
4 tire levers.
a valve removal tool.
Some tire lube.
For lube you can use talc powder or soapy water. You can also get tire lube that’s made for changing tires. I use Yamalube.
Sometimes I practice changing the tire without the tire lube because these tools aren’t available if you are out riding and get a flat in the middle of nowhere. It’s harder to do but definitely worth learning.
So to avoid the pain of figuring it out yourself, here is my 36 point, step by step process for changing a tire or replacing an inner tube.
Also, take a look at these great YouTube videos that show you how it’s done.
Here’s a good video for changing a tire when you are out riding.
STEP 1. Unscrew the axle nut. If it is hard to come off, don’t be afraid to step on the wrench and use your body-weight to break the tension.
STEP 2. Pull out the axle – Pull the axle out some of the way so the chain adjuster block comes out of the swing arm.
STEP 3. Remove the chain – Push the wheel forward so the chain goes slack and then remove the chain from the sprocket.
STEP 4. Lift up the wheel so you are taking its weight and then slide out the axle entirely with your other hand.
To keep the axle in a safe spot, slide it into the muffler.
STEP 5. Once the wheel is free, lay it down on top of another tire so you have a steady base to work on. If you don’t have another tire, use padded ground like grass or a thick mat so the disc and sprocket doesn’t get damaged when you are standing on the wheel.
STEP 6. Remove the valve stem nut and put it in a safe place so you don’t lose it.
STEP 7. Loosen off the rim lock but only enough to get the tire off the rim.
STEP 8. Remove the valve with a valve removal tool.
STEP 9. Stand on the tire and walk your weight around the tire until it breaks away from the rim. Spin the tire over and do the same thing on the other side using your hands until the entire tire has moved off the rim.
STEP 10. Get a tire lever and insert it between the rim and the tire. Place it about 4 spokes away from the valve.
when using tire levers, be really carefully to not pinch the inner tube.
STEP 11. Continue inserting the remaining 3 levers around the wheel close together and tuck the 4th lever under the rear brake disc so it stays put.
STEP 12. After you have put in all the tire levers you should be able to pull one side of the tire off the rim by hand.
STEP 13. Remove the inner tube.
NOTE: At this point, if you are not replacing the tire and only replacing the inner tube, jump to STEP 18
STEP 14. Stand the tire up and place 2 tire levers between the rim lock on the sprocket side and push them through to the other side of the wheel.
STEP 15. Lever the tire completely over the rim lock and continue to shift the lever across, levering the tire over as you go.
STEP 16. Use the rubber mallet and the lever together to keep hitting and levering the tire off the rim.
STEP 17. After the tire has completely come off the rim, grab the new tire and pour the talcum powder around the inside of the tire. The talcum powder prevents tube pinching.
STEP 18. Partially inflate the tube and insert the tube into the new tire (or the existing one). Apply more talcum powder onto the tube.
If you are installing a new tire, make sure the new tire is rotating in the proper direction. To work this out, check the markers on the side of the tire as they will tell you the correct direction.
Also, some tires have a round spot on the side of tire that indicates where the rim lock is to be located. Make sure you line up this spot with the rim lock.
STEP 19. Grab the rim and tire and line them up so you can put the valve through the rim and secure the valve nut. Make sure the sprocket side of the wheel is facing outwards.
STEP 20. Push the rim down back onto the tire and work as much of the disc side of the tire back onto the rim by hand as possible.
STEP 21. Use a lever to get the sprocket side of the rim completely onto the tire.
STEP 21. Lay the wheel back down with the disc facing up.
STEP 22. Begin to use the tire levers again to begin to lever the tire back onto the rim, being extra careful to not damage the inner tube. Start on the opposite side of the rim lock and slowly working your way around.
STEP 23. Use your foot and the tire levers together to get the tire back onto the rim.
STEP 24. As you get to the final section of tire around the rim lock, push and hold in the rim lock as you lever the final piece of tire onto the rim.
STEP 25. Now that the tire is back on the rim, the rim lock should be moving in and out freely.
STEP 26. Re-install the valve into the tube.
Step 27. Fill the tire up to about 30PSI to expand the tire and make sure that the tire has popped back onto the rim. If it doesn’t use a bit more air pressure and bounce the tire on the ground and it should pop into position.
STEP 28. Tighten up the rim lock and reduce the air pressure down to a riding level of about 17PSI
STEP 29. Roll the wheel back onto the swing arm of the bike making sure that the disc brake is separated so the disc can slide in.
STEP 30. Grab your axle and slide it halfway back onto the wheel.
STEP 31. Refit the chain by placing the chain onto the bottom section of the sprocket then spinning the wheel forward slowly until the chain guides itself completely onto the sprocket.
STEP 32. Push the axle the rest of the way in and loosely tighten up the axle nut.
STEP 33. Place a screwdriver into a tooth of the sprocket and roll the wheel backwards so the chain rolls over the screwdriver. This will push the wheel against the chain adjuster blocks.
STEP 34. Hold some tension on the rear wheel so then screwdriver stays in place between the chain and sprocket to hold the axle in place while you tighten the axle nut.
STEP 35. Pump the rear brake pedal to squeeze the brake pads back into position.
STEP 36. You are done! Go grab yourself a beer!
If this is the first time you have changed a tire then you are going to find this task tough and frustrating, but don’t give up! The hardest part is the levering action and there is definitely some skill to mastering it.
My advice is to practice the levering in small, bite sized pieces and stick with it. The first time will take you ages to finish but you will eventually get faster and faster. Practice it a few times and you will be changing tires like a pro in no time at all.
If you want to change a tire and you are in the garage, consider buying the Rabaconda.
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