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Tire Bead Breaker

DIY $5 Bead Breaker that works every time … quickly

By Brian Collins <>
4/26/2004 4:44 AM

Over the years, I have tried numerous ideas for DIY Tire Bead Breakers. (Bench vise, C clamps, jumping on a board resting on the bead, etc. All were unsatisfactory.) Even spent the bucks to purchase the “Tyreplier” recommended by Motorcycle Consumer News … not a good choice for the GS’s wire wheels; it won’t fit between the tightly laced spokes. I generally ended up hauling my wheel and tire over to a friend’s to get the bead broken by his professional changing machine.

Here is a foolproof trick that costs only a few dollars to put together (the cost of two (2) 2X4s from your local Home Depot).

Leave one its full 8 foot length and cut the other one into 3 pieces: One piece 12″ in length and two pieces 24″ in length … that’s all you need!!

The picture I have attached shows how to set it up. The two 24″ pieces are laid on the ground adjacent to your family car out in the driveway. You then lay your wheel and tire assembly on these two 2X4s making certain that your brake rotor is not touching anything. Then, place one end of the 8 foot 2X4 under your car’s rocker panel and then place the short 12″ piece of 2X4 vertically under the 8 foot piece and the lower end on your motorcycle’s tire sidewall. You may have to move things around a bit until you find a combination that works in conjunction with your particular automobile.

To Break the bead of the tire, place your foot on the edge of the tire and wheel furthest from the car and a forceful push down on the 8 foot 2X4 should quickly break the bead, you may have to rotate the tire and wheel once or twice to help separate the rest of the tire from the wheel rim.

I have used regular 2X4s for this procedure, but do get some slight cracking sounds from the long 2X4, … So, have thought that perhaps a pressure treated 2X4 might provide more strength for the long pry bar. Of course, it goes without saying …, wear eye protection and exercise caution and good common sense using this as you would with any tool.

Brian Collins
Dallas, TX

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