Do you continue to ride on those weather checked knobbies that aren’t so knobby anymore? Maybe the thought of having to pay someone to mount your tires is holding you back or you think that it sounds too hard to do yourself. Well think again if it’s the latter of the two. Mounting MX tires actually isn’t as hard as you may think and it only requires a few tools. If you follow the steps below, you can get those new Dunlop Geomax dirt bike tires that you have been eyeing up mounted on your bike in no time.
Before you get started, make sure that you have the tools that you are going to need. These tools include Motion Pro tire spoons, a Motion Pro Bead Buddy, valve stem remover, baby powder, soapy water and a 12mm wrench or socket. Having a Motion Pro tire stand can make the job much easier, but it is definitely not needed. Once you have your tools assembled, it’s time to get started with the process.
Removing the Old Tire
Time to say goodbye to that worn out tire. With the wheel removed from your dirt bike, you can begin the process of removing the old tire. The first thing that you need to do is to deflate the tube. To do this, remove the valve core and let all of the air out. Try to make sure that all of the air is out to make the removal easier. Next, take your wrench or socket and loosen the rim lock nut so that it is only on the last couple of threads. This will give the rim lock some play when you go to break the bead.
Now you can break the beads on the tire. This is where having the tire stand is helpful. With the wheel elevated, you can press down on the tire to break the beads on both sides. Then you can use your tire spoons to pop the tire off of the rim. To do this, slide a tire spoon in a few inches away from the rim lock and pop the bead up over the rim. Take your other spoon and insert it about three inches down from the first and pull up. You can then remove the first spoon and repeat the process all of the way around until you reach the rim lock. This process is made easier by having more spoons, but you can get by with just two.
Many people get the process wrong by only popping one side, so make sure that you pop both sides of the tire, which will make removing the rim much easier. Once the tire is popped off of the rim, you can knock the rim lock loose and pull the valve stem out of the rim.
With everything loose, you can stand the wheel up and push it down so it sinks to the bottom of the tire. This will allow you to pull the rim out of the tire by pulling up and out.
Mounting the New Tire
With the old tire off, you can take this time to inspect your wheel. Make sure that there is no debris and that all of your spokes are in good shape. If everything checks out, it’s time to prep the new tire to be mounted.
Just like your skin after riding all day in the hot and humid summer weather, dirt bike tubes and tires can chafe. You can reduce the tube chaffing and wear by sprinkling baby powder on the inside of the new tire. Re-install the valve core to the tube and then add just enough air so the tube holds its shape and put the tube in the new tire. Grab the soapy water next and soap up the tire beads.
Once your new dirt bike tire is prepped, you can start the mounting process. If you are doing the rear tire, install it from the brake side so you don’t risk damaging the new tire on the sprocket. To begin, insert the valve stem into the rim and lightly screw on the nut to keep the tube from moving out of place. Next, take your tire spoons and work the tire onto the rim. Do this in three inch bites until one side is on. Flip the wheel over and use two tire spoons to work the tire over the rim lock. You can push the rim lock up into the tire while holding the tire off of the bead.
With the rim lock in place, you can start working the bead onto the tire. Place two spoons in-between the tire and rim about four inches from one another and insert the Motion Pro Bead Buddy in-between them. The Bead Buddy will hold the bead in place as you work around the tire. With the Beady Buddy in place, work the tire onto the bead in three to four inch increments. Once the tire is all of the way on, you can remove the Bead Buddy.
Now you can tighten up the valve stem nut and inflate the tire. Don’t tighten the nut all of the way. This will allow the tube to have some play if the tire turns on the rim. A good way to check the seal of the bead is to over inflate the tire to about 25 psi. If everything checks out, tighten the rim lock, being careful not to over-tighten it. Over-tightening can break the rim lock or even bend your rim. Once it is tight, you can bring the tire psi down to the normal range, which is somewhere between 12-14 psi.
The process might take you a little while the first time, but once you’ve done a few, you will be able to fly through it. You might not be so hesitant to get those new dirt bike tires in the future.