Coker Tire Change - EASY

Well, I have 950 miles on my Coker this summer. The tire was getting really worn, the first 250 miles wore quite quickly as I was not nearly as good freemounting. Anyway, I was hesitant about changing the tire as I had read of the difficulty many people had.

Here is how it went.
I removed the old tire. I have a cheap set of steel tire levers. I had to use two of the tire levers to get the first part of the tire off the rim. After that it was just my hands.

Then what we have all been waiting for. I put one bead over the rim, hands alone, no problem. Prior to this I had put baby powder on the inside of the tire and on the tube. Then I inserted the tube in the tire. Just enough air to keep it from folding. Then I started to put the second bead on only using my hands. I got to a point where I had about 12 inches of the bead still to put on, and my hands could not do it. I enlisted a helper, a 15 year old daughter. On the side of the rim opposite where I was trying to install the bead, I had her hold the tire, pushing the bead towards the center of the rim. Mind you she is only 15 and really had no interest in doing anything with my unicycle, but I had interrupted here internet time and she knew she could not leave until I had finished my adventure.

I then was able to do another 2 inches. I was getting worried here. I then grabbed my tire levers. I used one to pull another inch over, and a second to pull one more inch over. Then I removed the first, and I was able to pull the rest on with my hands. It was done. I pumped it, and two days later it still holds air, so I did not puncture the tube either.

It really was not that bad. I could not believe what I had read. People taking it to bike shops and the shops claiming it was impossible. Mind you I have been biking for 15 years and have changed many tires, but never a Coker.

The only issue I had was trying to seat the bead when it was pumped up. I had to use two tiny squirts of wd40 on the bead, then it just slipped into place.

Anyone can do this. It took me about 40 minutes, going slow and cautious.

I read about the 29" tubes and thought I’d try one. I also read of all the troubles people were having getting tyres on/off and thought I would test my tire to see how easy it comes off before I buy a tube that I may not be able to use.

It was just like any other bike/unicycle tyre I have ever changed. It came straight off, the tube came straight out and went straight back in, as did the tyre. No worries! And it’s still inflated from that day, which was around a month ago.

I have more bother changing the Halo Contra’s on my muni, I always have to re-do them about three times until it stays on the rim properly.

Now I just need to wait on the shop getting hold of fat 29" tubes for me.


I’ve done it a bunch of times on mine, it takes about 15 mins to take it off, fix a puncture and put it back on again.

It’s apparently much harder if a) you’ve got a tyre/rim that happens to be slightly bigger or smaller than it should be, or b)you’ve got the airfoil rim. The quality control on coker parts isn’t very good, they do vary a fair bit.


I’ve never looked at a Coker rim so this may be completely irrelephant, but:

Some bike tyres are impossibly tight to get the last bit over the rim unless you push the opposite side of the bead into the middle of the rim, where there is usually a “trough” where the spoke nipples are. This usually gives you enough extra slack to get the last bit of bead over the rim. Forcing it over with levers can be a bit dodgy because it can damage the bead, leading to blowouts (probably more of problem with high pressure bike tyres), apart from the danger of pinching the tube with the lever.