How to get a very tight tire back on the rim?

  • I needed to change the tube as a consequence of a flat tire and I am in the situation that it's just impossible to put the tire back on the rim.

    In almost ten years of experience with road bikes and MTB, I never experienced this.

    I tried to use any possible tips, for example from the question How to get the tyre back on to the rim easily?

    Every time I try, I end up pinching the tube and it's just impossible to put the tire in. How can I fix this?

    I am hypothesizing crazy things, like: dilatation of the rim, need of industrial tools, ...

    Edit (to address Neil's question): the troubles are given by a 700x23c tire on a 700C rim of a fixed gear.

    I edited your title to better reflect the question. Also, what size tires/rims are you working with? I assume skinny tires, 32 mm or thinner? Also, are these new tires? (As tires are removed and reinstalled, they tend to loosen up and this becomes less of an issue.)

    thanks Neil, although I'd say "impossible" rather than "particularly troublesome" :(

    Edited again, how's this?

    Take it to a LBS when they have a slow day, see if they will let you watch the process. I find I have less pinches when I use liberal amounts of talc on the tube.

    +1 for talc. It makes it easier to get the tire on (well, a little bit) and you're less likely to pinch the tube. I keep a small container of it in the basement work area.

    yeah, talc is a very good tip. +1

    Is it particularly cold where you are? I had a lot of problems with a tire last winter until I took the wheel indoors where the problem went away completely.

    Hi Colin, thanks for the comment. It's not cold at all in this period of the year. I don't know where the tires were stored before, since I bought them recently.

    Did you try this the instructions in this video? (See my answer below). Basically work the tire bead into the well of the rim on the opposite side of the last bit you're trying to get on. Easier to understand by watching the video. Use straps to hold the tire if you need to. This is easy and doesn't require other tools, and because the tire has more room to get on, you will avoid pinches.

    I created an account just so that I can show my appreciation and agree with the posted video above. First several tries ended with me breaking not one but two separate tire levers. When moving the bead of the tire into the groove I was able to put the entire tire on by hand! No lever necessary and in my case no need to tie down the tire at different points. One additional thing I would like to point out however is that since I have a narrow tire I had to inflate the tube slowly so that it would 'pop' back onto the sides. This ensured that I did not unevenly inhibit the rapid tube expansion and

    Jason, I used that video as well on a pair of Continentals that were seemingly impossible. Saved my hands and averted a total meltdown on my part.

    I've decided to accept @JasonS's answer. 1) The video contains some very smart tips, such as using straps to trap the tyre. Somehow I had never thought about that. 2) The answer clearly wins by the popular vote :)

  • Jason S

    Jason S Correct answer

    9 years ago

    The above video shows how to fit a tight tire / rim combination. Although it shows the Marathon Plus tire, it applies to any tire.

    The crucial point he makes on the video is that the tire bead doesn't stretch and is the limiting factor in getting the tire on. Thus you need to push the bead into the well of the rim on the sides opposite to the last bit you're trying to get on. Doing this gives you the room you need to get the last bit on.
    The extra room will make it easier and you will be less likely to pinch the tube. You can use straps to hold the tire in place if you need to.

    I have the Marathon Plus tires and it used to take me an hour of frustration and sore hands trying to get them on. Using the technique in the video it takes me 5 mins like any other tire.

    +1 I just broke a tyre lever getting my one on. Wish I'd seen this video first!

    Arrived at this solution (minus the toe straps) by trial and error on exactly this tire. It works!

    Wow! That video actually helped me put the tire back on! I used black church socks to tie off the tire. Worked perfectly. I'll keep those in my bike bag. I actually just used my hands to get the road tire on. Amazing! You could sell this video! :)

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Content dated before 6/26/2020 9:53 AM