Classic & Vintage - 26" Tire Hack
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10-02-09, 01:57 PM
Has anyone out there ever tried mounting a 26 x 1-3/8" S-6 tire (ISO 597 mm) on an old 26 x 1.375" (ISO 599 mm) rim? It looks as though, with only 2 mm difference on the diameter, the tire should fit. However, I can't find anyone who says it will work, either.
Unfortunately, when I rebuilt my 1956 Columbia 3 speed roadster, I didn't recognize the VERY OLD tire designation, and there simply aren't any 26 x 1.375" tires available any more.
Anyone have a suggestion <sheepish grin>
garage sale GT
10-02-09, 06:00 PM
try bikepartsusa or niagaracycle. They have 597's for $6, so you won't be out a lot if it doesn't work. It's not worth agonizing over for $6.
10-02-09, 06:34 PM
I have tried what you are purposing and it doesn't work. The difference is small but enough that the the tire will not seat on the Schwinn type/Columbia non-hook beaded rims. When inflated you will end up with a bump/flat spot in the tire instead of it being round. Roger
10-02-09, 06:54 PM
Funny thing - I just did a search for the availability of these tires, only to find an ancient posting of mine from the Schwinn Forums:
Apparently, I had done an inventory of one of the LBS's oddball tires back in 2006. Sure enough, one NOS Goodyear 599mm was in the mix.
Most of that shop's stock has been stuffed in a warehouse for about a year due to some changes of location - some of the tires are still kicking about, others are no longer on the floor until they move into their final location next year. I can check the next time I'm there, but I doubt I'll find it.
EDIT: You'd be a fool not to get the Uniroyal on eBay. Get it.
It'll be a tight fit IF you can get them on.
Ace Hardware sells these:
EBay has a few NOS Uniroyal in that size:
See if you can borrow a 700C wheel and see if that fits/enough clearance in your fork and frame. If it does, then you have an alternative but will need new, shorter calipers.
Or go smaller to ISO 590 (26x1-3/8") or 650B (ISO 584). Long reach calipers will be needed, like Tektro's 984 ($9 each, 65-89mm reach) or Dia-Compe Bulldog BMX Side Pull ($18, 68-86mm reach) or Sunlite Bull Dog ($13 and has a super long reach 66-95mm). Need to check/measure how much reach you really need for the wheel size you decide on getting. You may have to re-use the old caliper bolts in the new caliper so they mount/fit correctly. Should fit/work...done a few of them. Unfortunately the Tektro 800A dual pivot calipers are no longer available in the US...have to get those from Japan (was $18 for both F/R and no bolt swap was necessary).
10-02-09, 10:50 PM
Keep in mind with a diameter of 599, the circumference is 1881.814, while the 597 has a circumference of 1875.531. So that's about a half a centimeter you're trying to stretch that tire.
10-04-09, 10:09 AM
Thanks all - points well taken. Cuda, I saw that Uniroyal on ebay a couple weeks ago, and when I went back to buy it, I couldn't find it anymore. Thanks for the heads up! I'm buying the Uniroyal right now!
10-06-09, 05:45 PM
Well, guys, I got the Uniroyal tire today (fast shipping!) and it was exactly what I needed. The Columbia had two of these exact Uniroyal tires on it when I bought it. Both appeared to be in like new condition - zero tread wear, no cracks, mold flash still attached, etc. BUT the front tire was damaged, as though the bead was pulling loose. It wouldn't sit straight on the rim.
After mounting the new tire, the old three speed is finally finished! Took a spin up the road, and she's stable as can be - truly an amazing ride for a 54 year old bike!
Thanks again for all your help and advice, guys.
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