Suggestions for getting a tire off of rim

Forums Mountain Bike Forum Suggestions for getting a tire off of rim

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This topic contains 26 replies, has 14 voices, and was last updated by  TwiceHorn 2 months ago.

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  • #240143

    I purchased a Diamondback Release several months ago. I experienced my first flat on it the other day and I am having a helluva a time getting the tire off the rim. The tire is a 27.5 Schwalbe Hans Dampf mounted on a DB Blanchard 28R rim. I cannot get the bead to pop out with tools or even by standing on the tire and pulling upward on the rim. I’ve fixed flats many times and have never had this problem. It almost seems like the tire is glued or fused to the rim.  Any suggestions are welcome.

  • #240148

    Huh, that’s weird. Is the tire mounted tubeless? Not that it matters really, but it might explain the tight lock on the bead, or indicate sealant has formed a tight hold. (If you are running sealant, I’m curious to know what kind.)

    I would suggest starting at the valve and going around the tire, one side at a time, pushing the bead inward (toward the center of the rim) with your thumb. You’re basically looking for a weak spot where the tire isn’t stuck quite as hard. Once you get a little separation, you should be able to get a tire lever in there, which you can then run all the way around.

    I’ve definitely had some tires that were difficult to separate, usually as a result of dried sealant.

    • #240190

      Thanks for the suggestion. It’s a tubeless ready rim but it came stock with a tubed tire. I could find no discernable weak spots around the rim that would allow me to work a lever in. I contacted Diamondback and the representative did acknowledge the Schwalbe tires can be difficult to remove. In his email he did seem to suggest that they will replace with different tires if the bike is still under warranty. Still might go to the LBS and see if they can remove it.

  • #240151

    Hi Chris. I have a couple of mountain bikes with wheels that have fairly aggressive bead locks around the inside. I use a vise to pinch the tire together and then push the wheel over until the tire pops off the bead. I’m always careful not to leverage the wheel against the top of the vise, so as not to damage the wheel. BTW, these are carbon wheels. It’s been the only way that’s worked for me so far.

    Knock-on-wood, I haven’t had to repair a flat trailside…yet. Hope that helps.

  • #240158

    Try calling diamondback service and see if this is a typical issue, they may be able to help.  Ask for Reinout, he was very helpful.  I have the release 5c with arc 30 rims and they came off and went on easily.  Good luck.

    • #240231

      Diamondback technical support advised me to cut the tires off. They are going to send Maxxis Ardents to replace the Schwalbes.

  • #240160

    I have a 2016 Diamondback Release 1. I had the same problem removing a tire from the rim so I took it to my LBS. After fixing it, the mechanic said that it took 2 people at the shop to remove the tire from the rim. They put the wheel over the rim of a large round trash can to work the tire loose. The Schwalbes that came with my bike have a wire bead that conforms very tightly to the inner part of the rim. Realizing that I would be stuck if I needed to change a flat on the trail I decided to switch to a different tire. I ended up cutting the Schwalbes off of my rims (including wire snippers for the beads) and replacing them with foldable Maxxis tires. There was a silver lining: in the process of doing this I switched over to a tubeless setup (the valves were included when I bought my bike) which made a significant improvement in bike acceleration and which has saved me from flatting after encounters with thorns.

    • #240166

      Like ncbikeguy said, “The Schwalbes that came with my bike have a wire bead that conforms very tightly to the inner part of the rim… I ended up cutting the Schwalbes off of my rims“, I had to cut off a tire once as well.  Different wire beaded tire on a different tubeless rim altogether.  Never thought about it, but maybe this scenario is more common than not.

  • #240167

    What I do to unseat the bead is I grab the tire with my fingers pointing towards the rim and my palms on the tread, then I bend my wrists back while gripping tightly and pushing the rim forward slightly to pull the bead on the far side of the tire up and back. For this it is best to have the wheel either on the ground or braced against yourself. This usually does the trick but I haven’t done this with wire bead tires, and I don’t know if they lock into the rim tighter. When my tires get stuck it’s usually due to dried sealant.

  • #240197

    Had this happen last week on a 2017 Rocky Mountain Growler with Alex tubeless compatible rims.  Just bought it (used) and the WTB Rangers on it were shot, so I went to change them and the damn tires wouldn’t budge a millimeter.  Ended up cutting them off but still couldn’t get the wire bead off.  Ended up going to the local shop and it took two the shop guys to pull them them apart enough to snip the bead.  The Rangers were not set up tubeless.  My new McFly’s went on nicely (Tubeless) but they sure snapped when I inflated them.  Concerned I may have the same issue next time. 🙁

     

  • #240198

    I think the Schwalbe tires are exceptionally tight. I just put a Nobby Nic on a 27.5 Roam 40 and it took so much effort to get on I thought it wouldn’t work and almost gave up on it. But I was eventually able to get it on and the thing held air for days before I put the sealant in (Waiting for other parts)

    Use a plastic tire lever and work it in. Once the seal is broken, it’ll slide off.

  • #240233

    Cutting through the bead without damaging the rim might be tricky (cutting off the tire would be pretty straightforward).  It’s likely that the sealant has dried, effectively gluing the bead to the rim.  A cheap fix might be to remove the valve core and add some very slightly soapy water through the valve.  spin it around to distribute the soapy water, then try to pry it off again.  Might need to let the water site for a while to loosen things up.

  • #250973

    I am stuck halfway in converting my wheels to a tubeless setup. My 2018 Kona Cinder Cone came with WTB tubeless compatible rims, mounted with Schwalbe Nobby Nic’s, with tubes. After puncturing the rear tire on a recent ride, I bought supplies to make the tubeless conversion. With considerable effort, I was able to remove the rear tire. After I taped the rim, I fought the tire back onto the rim, and set the bead with a floor pump. So far, so good.

    Today, I tried to finish the conversion on the front wheel. Despite immense effort, I gave up on trying to remove the tire. I just could not unseat the bead, no matter how much effort and technique I applied. Frustrating!

  • #250976

    So now I am left to wonder, if my front tire gets a flat, does that mean the tire is done, seeing as how it proved “impossible” to remove from the rim? Maybe a trip to the LBS is in order.

  • #250995

    I’ve started using a trigger clamp like this one to unseat stubborn tire beads. I set the head as close to the rim as possible, and really tighten the clamp. Sometimes this alone is enough to unseat the bead, but most times I need to twist the clamp side to side to get things loose.

    This works great at home, but I’m not sure what I’ll do if I run into this problem on the trail…

  • #251011

    Like Jeff, I’ve had issues with old sealant drying and forming a tight seal which is hard to unseat.  But it doesn’t sound like this is the issue here.  Do you guys think this is a tire issue (both instances cited are with Schwalbe), a rim issue, or a combo of the two?

  • #251014

    My theory is it’s too much of a good thing! Rim / bead interfaces are getting so good that tires really lock in and don’t want to come out. That’s great when you’re riding, not so great when you actually want to get the tire off.

    Dried sealant might be a factor, but it’s not as strong as glue or anything. The latex-based stuff usually just peels right off.

  • #251027

    In my case, the tire has a tube in it. First I tried my thumbs, then I tried tire levers, a credit card, channel locks with teeth covered in duct tape, standing on the edge near the rim, a c-clamp, a butter knife, tube deflated, tube inflated, soapy water sprayed all around the rim/tire interface- no dice. During this process, I noticed a spoke with a little tweak, 180 degrees from the valve stem. I put a tire lever there, and it matched. This makes me think the initial installation of the tire was extremely difficult.

    Maybe I could take a crack with one of those trigger clamps. Sure would hate to have a flat while out on a long ride.

    On another note, this makes me want to work on the other tire which I was able to successfully convert to tubeless, just to assure myself that I will be able to unseat and reseat that bead. Practice makes better.

  • #251030

    Sure would hate to have a flat while out on a long ride.

    I completely agree.  Much better to get it sorted out now as getting a flat is inevitable and Murphy’s law would suggest it will happen at the most inopportune time.  For me, that would be when i’m at the very end of an “out” on an “out and back”.  Lol

  • #251128

    I tried Jeff Barber’s suggestion of using a trigger clamp, to no avail. I have even tried to wedge the tip of a flat blade screwdriver between rim and tire bead – no success. It looks like I have now punctured the sidewall just above the bead, so I guess this relatively new tire is toast.

    This is an impossibly stuck tire ????

    Any suggestions before I take a knife to this thing?

     

  • #251241

    Anyone tried some actual penetrating oil instead of soap and water?

    Try leaving a couple clamps on it overnight too.  Quite often “force over time” works to release difficult things that immediate force does not.

  • #251307

    Success at last (at least in getting the tire off of the rim) ????

    If nothing else, I don’t give up easily. Perseverance paid off.

    This morning, I took my front wheel to the window glass and screen shop where I work. There I have access to a round, hard plastic trash can, one of a few “tools” I used to finally unseat the Nobby Nic from the rim. At first, I leaned over the rim with my nearly 200 pounds and pushed hard with gloved hands. Nothing. While rolling the tire trying to expose the bead, I tried to work a tire lever between the bead and the seat – not even close. Using a thin, stiff, blunt plastic tool used for shimming glass, I was able to at least slide past the bead and touch the base of the rim. But I still could not get a tire lever to be of any use. Reluctantly, I wedged a small flat blade screwdriver between the bead and the base, trying as best I could not to scratch the seat. After several attempts, finally the bead broke loose. One side of the tire was free, but the opposite bead was still seated very tightly. The stiff glass shim broke the other bead loose, and I removed the tire.

    I was surprised by the amount of effort that this required, and it makes me anxious if ever I need to insert a tube while on a ride. Unfortunately, some damage was done to the tire at the bead face, but fortunately no puncture. Despite the minor damage, I plan to mount this tire to complete my tubeless conversion. Soon enough, I will learn whether this tire will work or if it needs replacing.

  • #251314

    Today I completed the conversion of the Nobby Nic to tubeless, using Gorilla tape, a Stan’s valve stem and Orange Endurance sealant. To seat the bead, I had to put in a tube, then it again required a flat blade screwdriver to unseat the bead so that I could remove the tube. Maybe it is just this wheel and tire combination, but this setup requires the use of a screwdriver to unseat the bead.

  • #251317

    I think a couple of things are going on here.  First, tire manufacturers are making tighter beads that are harder to get over the edge of a rim.  Second, the tubeless compatible rim profile has a less deep “well” (further complicated by the fact that the well may be partially filled with tape) and the well (the smallest diameter portion of the rim) is narrower because of the shoulders in tubeless rim profiles.  These things all facilitate seating a tubeless tire, but may make getting the tire on and off the rim heck.

    The classic answer to a tight bead was to get the beads in that well all the way around the rim, which would free enough bead to get it over the sidewall of the rim.  That is harder to do with the narrower and shallower wells of tubeless rims.

  • #251348

    Has anyone with a reluctant tire tried (carefully) riding with the tire deflated to unseat the bead?  I’m only asking since that’s something we did years ago to unseat motorbike tires.

    Maybe someone needs to build a smaller version of this: https://dirtwheelsmag.com/beadbuster-tire-bead-breaker-test/

    With the cold weather and closed trails, I may put some of my scrap metal to use…

     

     

  • #251435

    I think we may be conflating unseating a bead with getting the tire off the rim because the tire has a tight (small diameter and or stiff) bead.

     

    The way I read OP’s problem is that it’s getting the tire off the rim, not seating or unseating the bead.  I could be wrong.

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