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Clincher Fitting Tips

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Clincher Fitting Tips

Old 09-03-20, 12:56 PM
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rower2cyclist
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Clincher Fitting Tips

Last night I spent literally about two hours fitting new Vittoria Corsa G2 (clincher) tires on a pair of HED Ardennes+ wheelset. I have never had this much difficulty putting tires on a wheel in my life. My hands are wrecked.

I squeezed the tires as much as can towards the middle of the rim but without much improvement. Finally, I gave up and used a plastic tire lever but the idea of getting a flat and having to spend half an hour on the side of the road is truly scary.

Maybe tires sitting in the cool basement past week added to my struggles. Should I have left it outside under the sun a little?

What are other tips that I can use? I put a bit of some soap around the rim but it got a bit messy. Maybe it wasn't enough. I also started fitting the tire near the valve then moved up. Should I have started the other way?

Anyways, tips and tricks are welcome. thank you!
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Old 09-03-20, 01:08 PM
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Use a different set of tires that are an easier fit on your rims.
Get a Koolstop bead jack. Carry it with you on rides or hope the tires stretch out.

I do start opposite the valve because you can squeeze more of the tire from there, but for my hands' sake and sanity I just use the Koolstop unless the tire is well-stretched.
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Old 09-03-20, 01:31 PM
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Originally Posted by surak View Post
Use a different set of tires that are an easier fit on your rims.
Get a Koolstop bead jack. Carry it with you on rides or hope the tires stretch out.

I do start opposite the valve because you can squeeze more of the tire from there, but for my hands' sake and sanity I just use the Koolstop unless the tire is well-stretched.
Amazing, I had no idea such a tool exists. Just ordered it on Amazon. Thank you!!!!
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Old 09-03-20, 02:14 PM
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I've had such problems mounting Conti tires onto the Fulcrum rims on my Bianchi that I ended up mounting the Contis on other bikes that have Velocity rims first, riding them for a few rides, and THEN moving them to the Fulcrums. Right out of the box, I've never been able to do them without levers, but once they're stretched out a bit, I can even take them off the rim without levers.
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Old 09-03-20, 02:24 PM
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HED Ardennes+ are a pain to get tyres onto. I've found most tubeless-ready clinchers rims I've fitted tyres to require at least two levers...though my hands aren't the strongest. Warmimg up tyres on the radiator at home does ease the fitting a little. The tyres fit slightly quicker the second time around after being on the bike for a while under pressure, just that little bit of 'give' with usage.
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Old 09-03-20, 02:39 PM
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Originally Posted by rower2cyclist View Post
Amazing, I had no idea such a tool exists. Just ordered it on Amazon. Thank you!!!!
It's a great tool to have. Once the tires are on, any subsequent changes should be not quite as painful as the bead stretches a fraction of a mm.

BTW some tire/rim combo's are notoriously difficult to mount, so in the future you may want to ask around.
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Old 09-03-20, 02:57 PM
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Originally Posted by genejockey View Post
I've had such problems mounting Conti tires onto the Fulcrum rims on my Bianchi that I ended up mounting the Contis on other bikes that have Velocity rims first, riding them for a few rides, and THEN moving them to the Fulcrums. Right out of the box, I've never been able to do them without levers, but once they're stretched out a bit, I can even take them off the rim without levers.
Thanks all I need is that extra few milimeters. Hopefully they are stretching just a little on the wheels now.

Originally Posted by Bob the Mech View Post
HED Ardennes+ are a pain to get tyres onto. I've found most tubeless-ready clinchers rims I've fitted tyres to require at least two levers...though my hands aren't the strongest. Warmimg up tyres on the radiator at home does ease the fitting a little. The tyres fit slightly quicker the second time around after being on the bike for a while under pressure, just that little bit of 'give' with usage.
Yes, will def warm up the tires beforehand next time. Although we down't have radiators in our house. Such foreign concept in the US. I miss living in a house with radiators way better than air heating!

Originally Posted by datlas View Post
It's a great tool to have. Once the tires are on, any subsequent changes should be not quite as painful as the bead stretches a fraction of a mm.

BTW some tire/rim combo's are notoriously difficult to mount, so in the future you may want to ask around.
Will def do my friend next time. I guess I got pretty lucky with my SLR1 and Rovals (before) I had no idea some combos could be problematic. That lool looks quite promising!
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Old 09-03-20, 03:07 PM
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Originally Posted by rower2cyclist View Post
Thanks all I need is that extra few milimeters. Hopefully they are stretching just a little on the wheels now.



Yes, will def warm up the tires beforehand next time. Although we down't have radiators in our house. Such foreign concept in the US. I miss living in a house with radiators way better than air heating!
Or immerse in warm water...I'm from the UK...everyone has a radiator here
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Old 09-03-20, 03:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Bob the Mech View Post
Or immerse in warm water...I'm from the UK...everyone has a radiator here
Yes, will try that. Re radiators, what I really miss is to sit down next to one or better put my back against one on a cold winter day and read a book or just chill. Air heating is so useless.
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Old 09-03-20, 04:08 PM
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Originally Posted by rower2cyclist View Post
Last night I spent literally about two hours fitting new Vittoria Corsa G2 (clincher) tires on a pair of HED Ardennes+ wheelset. I have never had this much difficulty putting tires on a wheel in my life. My hands are wrecked.

I squeezed the tires as much as can towards the middle of the rim but without much improvement. Finally, I gave up and used a plastic tire lever but the idea of getting a flat and having to spend half an hour on the side of the road is truly scary.
!
Yeah, I just had a hard time with some Corsa's on some new Hunt TL-ready wheels, though tires were non-TL variety. Here's what I did.. I first installed them (after unsuccessfully easily getting them on the Hunts) on my older Campy (nonTL) wheels -- no problem. I inflated them to about 110psi and let them sit for a day or two.
Uninstalled and put on the Hunts. I think you'll find that now you've got the tires on... inflate them to close to max and let them sit (or ride them).. In a day or so, or if you get a flat sometime in the future, those same tires will go on quite a bit easier than they do out of the box.

Originally Posted by Bob the Mech View Post
HED Ardennes+ are a pain to get tyres onto. I've found most tubeless-ready clinchers rims I've fitted tyres to require at least two levers...though my hands aren't the strongest. .
In a number of ways, this is the unfortunate truth. I'll wager the manufacturers to save some $$, will only offer TL-ready wheels soon enough, and getting tires on them will require having a database of compatibility handy to know which tires fit with which rims. From most of what I've heard, it seems generally the case that TL-ready rims are harder to get a nonTL tire on than a non-TL rim. It's probably helping the LBS though... bringing in some incremental flat-fixing revenue because the customers can't get the tires on/off.
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Old 09-03-20, 04:15 PM
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What size tires? I have a set of wheels for which mounting a 23 mm tire is an ever-loving pain, but the 25s go on without too much trouble. Another reason to go to 25s.

Also, for combos that are a challenge and I'm gonna use a tire lever, I finish right at the valve, with the valve screw tight to keep the tube out of the way. Cuts way down on accidental tube punctures from tire lever pinch.

I'm not one of those heroes who can mount any tire with my hands. Not me. That koolstop tire jack can help, but it's not magic. If the fit is really tight, you can just end up breaking the jack. Ask me how I know.
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Old 09-03-20, 05:09 PM
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I’ll just add 2 minor tricks that have worked for me: 1) use flat tire levers such as Schwalbe’s and use all 3, levering 2 in close proximity with the back of your hand then wedging the 3rd in where you can. The middle of the 3 always falls to the floor then which is OK but not dropping the other 2 without having them snap back or pinch a tube takes practice but is entirely doable.
2) Save your thumbs and hands by wearing snug fitting work gloves to roll that last bit of stubborn unmounted bead up and over.

Last edited by masi61; 09-04-20 at 12:37 PM.
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Old 09-03-20, 05:20 PM
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Originally Posted by rower2cyclist View Post
I also started fitting the tire near the valve then moved up. Should I have started the other way?
Yes, you should have started fitting the tire from directly opposite the valve, and then finished at the valve. The way I was taught, and what has worked for me for years, is to finish at the valve. That way, you can use the valve to manipulate the tube and make sure it is not under the tire bead, nor will it be dragged over the sidewall should you need to use a tire lever. It also helps to make absolutely sure that the first tire bead is seated in the direct center of the rim before you install the tube.

I've also heard a lot of people swear by bead jacks, but I have never tried one. I've never seen a bead jack that looked like it could be effective AND fit conveniently in a saddle bag or jersey pocket, so I will probably never buy one either.

Last edited by BoraxKid; 09-03-20 at 05:25 PM.
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Old 09-04-20, 07:44 AM
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Originally Posted by MinnMan View Post
What size tires? I have a set of wheels for which mounting a 23 mm tire is an ever-loving pain, but the 25s go on without too much trouble. Another reason to go to 25s.

Also, for combos that are a challenge and I'm gonna use a tire lever, I finish right at the valve, with the valve screw tight to keep the tube out of the way. Cuts way down on accidental tube punctures from tire lever pinch.

I'm not one of those heroes who can mount any tire with my hands. Not me. That koolstop tire jack can help, but it's not magic. If the fit is really tight, you can just end up breaking the jack. Ask me how I know.

They are 25mm but still they were super tight, like not a millimeter space available like tight. Jack is something to have in the toolbox I guess. I'll see how it works next time I try to fit new tires.

Originally Posted by masi61 View Post
I’ll just add 2 minor tricks that have worked for me: 1) use flat tire levers such as Schwalbe’s and use all 3, levering 2 in close proximity with the back of your hand the wedging the 3rd in where you can. The middle of the 3 always falls to the floor then which is OK but not dropping the other 2 without having them snap back or pinch a tube takes practice but is entirely doable.
2) Save your thumbs and hands by wearing snug fitting work gloves to roll that last bit of stubborn unmounted bead up and over.
Are you doing an open heart surgery or fitting a tire? )))) Thanks for the tip. I have these yellow Pedro's levers but will def grab a few of Schwalbe levers. Btw, I used a pair of dish cleaning gloves that fits pretty tight and that def helped a little in the end!

Originally Posted by BoraxKid View Post
Yes, you should have started fitting the tire from directly opposite the valve, and then finished at the valve. The way I was taught, and what has worked for me for years, is to finish at the valve. That way, you can use the valve to manipulate the tube and make sure it is not under the tire bead, nor will it be dragged over the sidewall should you need to use a tire lever. It also helps to make absolutely sure that the first tire bead is seated in the direct center of the rim before you install the tube.

I've also heard a lot of people swear by bead jacks, but I have never tried one. I've never seen a bead jack that looked like it could be effective AND fit conveniently in a saddle bag or jersey pocket, so I will probably never buy one either.
Bead jack is just plan B, or maybe plan A if it makes the whole process even a few mins faster. But you are right that thing is super bulky for saddle bag or jersey pocket. Maybe I should just tape it on the tip tube haha.

Re where to start fitting the tire, I think you may be right. There's def more room around the valve area and pulling the valve while fitting the last section to avid pinch flats is the safer approach.

Thanks all!
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Old 09-04-20, 09:31 AM
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Originally Posted by rower2cyclist View Post
They are 25mm but still they were super tight, like not a millimeter space available like tight. Jack is something to have in the toolbox I guess. I'll see how it works next time I try to fit new tires.
...
Bead jack is just plan B, or maybe plan A if it makes the whol3 process even a few mins faster. But you are right that thing is super bulky for saddle bag or jersey pocket. Maybe I should just tape it on the tip tube haha.
!
See if you can find a VAR tool.. works well enough for 25mm tires, though once beyond 28mm tires I'm not sure. Size and shape works fine in eg. center rear jersey pocket.

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Old 09-04-20, 09:43 AM
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https://www.quora.com/Lately-I-have-.../Drew-Eckhardt

Understand rim construction, use two wraps of 1 mil Kapton rim tape, and apply proper technique. That will let you comfortably install and remove tires using your bare hands that had you cussing at tire levers.
...
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Old 09-04-20, 10:56 AM
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Originally Posted by rower2cyclist View Post
pulling the valve while fitting the last section to avid pinch flats is the safer approach.
That's not exactly how I do it. I was taught to push on the valve to make sure the tube is seated against the inside of the tire casing. That way, the tube should be far away from the bead, and you can then use a tire lever (if needed) to push the bead over the rim sidewall without fear of dragging the tube or getting it caught under the bead.

If you pull down on the valve, then there is a chance that the tire bead will land on top of the tube. If that happens, you'll see a big "tube tumor" form as you try to air up the tire. If you see it happening, you can always deflate and re-seat, but if you are on the side of the road using CO2, you will end up destroying the tube and/or wasting your CO2. This is why I use a mini-pump to check that the tire & tube are correctly seated before I deploy the CO2.

Last edited by BoraxKid; 09-04-20 at 10:59 AM.
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Old 09-04-20, 04:34 PM
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Lezyne extra long tire levers

I have broken a bead jack trying to install a tire, but often does the job. I have old hands and arthritic thumbs so anything that can help install or remove I welcome. These extra long levers are long and strong and really accentuate your leverage. I was putting Conti 4000 tires on Roval carbon wheels and thought I'd die and kill my hands before I succeeded. These tire levers eventually did the trick.
https://ride.lezyne.com/products/1-tl-powrxl-v1nl04

just saw these, maybe even better:

https://ride.lezyne.com/products/tub...e79605db&_ss=r

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Old 09-04-20, 05:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Sy Reene View Post
See if you can find a VAR tool.. works well enough for 25mm tires, though once beyond 28mm tires I'm not sure. Size and shape works fine in eg. center rear jersey pocket.

I got several in the 80's .. the tire iron part breaks off so I file it smooth and add more separate levers..
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Old 09-05-20, 06:13 AM
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Originally Posted by eflayer View Post
I have broken a bead jack trying to install a tire, but often does the job. I have old hands and arthritic thumbs so anything that can help install or remove I welcome. These extra long levers are long and strong and really accentuate your leverage.
Thinking about it.. especially maybe with CF rims now, you probably want a bead jack that will break at some point before your rim does. Maybe why they're not made out of steel?
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Old 09-05-20, 02:34 PM
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Ditto, that Kool Stop bead jack. I stick it in my jersey pocket every ride until I'm sure the tires I'm riding can be mounted without the bead jack. It's lighter in weight than my mini pump, not really a hassle to carry. Sometimes I'll use a Velcro strap or bungee to attach it to the outside of my saddle bag.

Tire mounting varies a lot with ease or difficulty, and repeated mounting/removing can *sometimes* loosen the fit. But not always.

My trick is to mount the valve stem side first, then pinch it up into the tire casing (to move the fatter base of the valve stem out of the way), gradually pinching the tire together to center it along the rim into the recess. Often that makes the difference between needing a bead jack or using my hands. And avoid using rim tape that reaches too far up the rim wall -- it can hinder seating the tire into the bead hooks on some rims. I usually use Velox or other cloth tape around 10-14mm wide at most, just enough to cover the spoke holes. As long as the rim is clean and the tape has some tack, it'll hold in place.

With Continental Ultra Sport II, I need the bead jack every time. Those things never get any easier. Wire or folding bead, they're by far the tightest fitting tires I've used.

Schwalbe One V-Guards were very difficult to mount the first couple of times. They gradually got a bit easier, probably due to excess tire mold nibs rubbing off the bead.

Continental Grand Prix Classics were difficult the first time but since then I've been able to use my hands to mount 'em, despite arthritis. These have become my go-to tires because they ride well, don't cost much and are easy to mount/remove. And they look good if you like skinwalls.

Vredestein Tricomp Fortezza were about like the Conti GP Classics, pretty easy to mount after the first time. Ditto, an old 700x20 Michelin TT/triathlon tire, don't recall the model.

Vittoria Zaffiro wire beads are pretty easy to mount but terrible tires so they collect dust in the closet. Harsh ride at full pressure, sluggish at lower pressure, skid easily and the tread cuts easily. Worst road bike tire I've ridden. For the same money, about $10-$15 per tire, the Conti Ultra Sport II is far superior, despite the PITA tight fit and needing a bead jack.

I have used wide, smooth edged Bontrager tire levers instead of the bead jack, but half the time it'll nick the tube and I'm back to square one. Not worth the hassle.
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Old 09-05-20, 11:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Bob the Mech View Post
Warmimg up tyres on the radiator at home does ease the fitting a little.
Which is odd because rubber contracts when heated. Have you tried freezing tyres before fitting?
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Old 09-06-20, 06:57 AM
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Originally Posted by znomit View Post
Which is odd because rubber contracts when heated. Have you tried freezing tyres before fitting?
Ha.. interesting! However, also made me look up Kevlar.. you know, that material that's super hard and is actually used as a bead material as well as sometimes for the puncture protection layer. See 2nd paragraph: https://www.linearmotiontips.com/whe...guide-systems/

So.. this ole wives tale about heating up tires has evidently been a bunch of hooey?! Maybe it made sense when wire bead tires were more a thing?
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Old 09-06-20, 09:17 AM
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I just put some Corsas on my bike, the first time I have installed foldable tires. I found these difficult to install compared to old school tires in the past. I installed these two ways. the first by trying to place the slightly inflated tube in the tire, then slipping both beads over the tire. The second time, I did as the instructions said. I first installed one bead, then placed the slightly inflated tube in place, then worked the second bead over. MUCH simpler and easier.

Danny
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Old 09-06-20, 11:10 AM
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rower2cyclist
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Join Date: May 2016
Posts: 171

Bikes: Giant TCR Advanced Pro 0 Disc

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Got this bad boy in the mail yesterday. Planning to try this a few times today. It arrived right after my big ride yesterday. Luckily didn’t get any flats. Hopefully 85mi & 9000ft climbing relaxed the tires a little . I think the size is good to carry in my jersey pocket.
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