Changing A Tire? (Summit)


I’ve never changed a tire before, though I watched Chris (rhysling) do it once. I don’t remember a darn thing. I don’t even have my replacement tube yet (I ripped the tube, the tire is fine). So, I want to go slow here. I bought a Wal-Mart kit that had 3 tire levers in it. What do I do to get the tire off my Summit? That will be goal #1 for me. Goal #2 will be to order the correct replacement tubes based on the tube in there now. Goal #3 will be to come back to the well and get advice on getting the tube and tire on without destroying my rim. Actually I don’t want to destroy my rim in any of the other steps either.

So … what do I do with tire levers? How are they inserted? The ones I have are plastic sticks with hooks on the end.

Thanks for any help.


This will give you the basic concept…

I kneel before Zod.

Pretty good advice there. I didn’t read it all but at least on my Gazza I couldn’t get the tire on with only one lever. The Summit tire might be the same. And if it is a really tight fit it might brake the plastic levers when you try to get the tire off. Those levers that come in these kits can be pretty crappy and short. So try putting one of the levers under the tire and lift the tire out a bit. Then put another lever pretty close to the first one and use that to remove the tire by sliding it. If you try with only one lever the tire can go back on the rim from where you started.

In addition to that:
Be sure you squeeze the tire beads together and get them into the drop-center of the rim on one side of the rim, then start prying off the opposite side. This is more critical on some tire/rim combinations than others, but always a good idea.

The hooks on the tire levers are to hook them on the spokes to hold them in place after prying the bead over the rim in one spot. Keeps you from running out of hands.


Yes, kneel before the Ruler of the Whole Planet Houston :wink:


Just take it to a bike shop. pay them the two dollars and pay attention to what they are doing. ask questions if you need to.
bike shop guys are usually pretty helpfull and always cool
(i was a shop guy for about four years).

your uni will probably create some interest and be grounds for interesting converstaion. maybe you’ll make some freinds and begin to get a hook up on parts. I just bought two Gazz tires for $18.00 ea from an old shop friend.

changing a tire is simple to do, a little harder to explain.
often when people used to ask to watch me i’d do it as fast as i could to make it seem impressive. we used to have pit stop style races with repair bikes. best time starting with tire off of frame ending with tire inflated and aligned in rim: 32 sec.

time it would have taken me to post how to change a tire at a resonable pace: don’t know. not gonna try.


Perhaps I should do that. Hmm. I do have all day Saturday. On the other hand I’d like to do it myself but taking the easy way out is always tempting. Yeah, I think I’ll go down to the bike shop.

Thanks all!


With that kind of thinking, you might as well trade your uni in on a bike while you are there. :roll_eyes: :wink:

Just so you know you can always use the other end of a spoon…they work very well for tire levers when it;s too hard for fingers.

Yeah, we used to do that too. Great time! My fastest was 41 seconds. The other mechanic at the shop I used to work at would have given you a race. His best was somewhere around 30 seconds.

Most tire/rim combinations don’t really need tire irons. The inside of the rim is smaller in the center than near the edges, so the trick is to push the tire beads (the wire cables burried in the edges of the tire) to the center of the rim. They’ll want to pop back, so to keep them there pull the tire tight to the rim.

The easiest way to do this is to hold the wheel in front of you like a steering wheel, with the stem at the bottom. Bend forward at the waist and put the opposite side against the ground. Now, work the tire edges into the center of the rim, starting from the stem (at the top near your belt buckle) and working both hands equally around the sides. Use your weight to push the tire down onto the rim to keep the bead into place. Keep working the slack to the down side until your hadns are about a foot apart.

Now, hold everything into place and straighen up. If the tire and rim are willing, and you’ve done a good job of working all the slack into one spot you can usually see daylight under the tire edges (at least for road tires) and the tire/tube will just pop right off. If not, the tire will probably be loose enough to push off with your thumbs. If it’s really stubborn you’ll need the tire irons.

Putting it back on is sort of the reverse. Install the tube in the tire with a tiny bit of air, place the stem, and work the tire onto the rim in exactly the same manner. Use only a litte air so the beads touch together in the center of the rim.

BTW Zod: "This will give you the basic concept… " has to be the understatement of the year!! Great link!

you must have a friend who rides a bike, just ask them,

if your realy feeling mischevious then you could pop their tyre and then co-incidentily ask them to let you watch them fix it.

its not hard to change a tyre, and i concur that a set of good spoons is an essential.