Tire changing

Discussion in 'Touring Models' started by kt23287, Jun 22, 2011.

  1. kt23287

    kt23287 Member

    My 09 Ultra is about ready for tires and I am considering taking the wheels off myself and take them to a shop to have the tires put on. I have a standard hydraulic foot pump motorcycle lift and wonder if that would get the bike high enough to get the rear wheel out, if I take the calipers off first. Any other tips would be appreciated too
    Thanks to all
  2. harley@16

    harley@16 Junior Member

    I have the Harbor freight lift and it goes up about 18 inches that works great, the caliper should just stay where it is when you pull the tire, mark the cam on the left side axle before removing to preset the belt tightness. remember don't press the brake when the tire is out or the pads will compress.
  3. Dswartz

    Dswartz Active Member

    I would definately recommend doing it yourself. Even if you have to buy some new tools you will certainly save yourself some money in the long run. I just replaced the rear tire on my bike and spent under $150 for the whole deal. Best advice I could give you is get the service manual and follow the instructions it tells you exactly how to remove the wheel. The first time might be a trick but after you do it a few times it will be a breeze and you'll be glad you are doing it for yourself. Good luck!

    As far as the lift goes as long as it gets the wheels off the ground and is secure it should work fine. I have the Harbor Freight one and never bring it higher than the first lock setting and have never had a problem. You don't need to raise it really high to get the job done.
  4. btsom

    btsom Active Member

    My preference is just the opposite re the calipers. The tire/wheel assembly is heavy, bulky, and ungainly. I find it much easier to "fiddle" the calipers onto the discs after the wheel is mounted, at least with the axle in place, not necessarily all adjusted and torqued. Trying to get the loose wheel perfectly aligned with discs slipping into the calipers seems more labor intensive to me than removing and re-mounting the calipers. If you have the new fatter rear tire, there might not be clearance between the caliper on one side and the swing arm on the other side to even slide the wheel out, though deflating the tire might provide just enough extra room for whatever interferes. All of my experience is on an 08 RK.
  5. dbmg

    dbmg Experienced Member

    1st things 1st. Remove necessary components on floor. IE: saddle bags, mufflers. Then loosen all attachments bolts next. Axles and caliper bolts etc. Make sure jack is in set near back of lower frame. Be sure to properly strap bike to lift. Raise bike. Remove all calipers first and put in a heavy sock to prevent scratching. Do not let calipers hang buy hoses so the will need secured. Wire straps or small bungy cords. Next remove wheels taking note of where spacers and washers are located. also note where belt adjustment is. With the rear wheel, lift will probably need to be raise lift more than half way. You may need to use a long punch and hammer to push out rear axle. They sometimes stick. Drop rear wheel to floor and angle out of rear fender. I always keep lift on safety catch when working on bike. Its always easier with a helper especially the rear. DON'T forget the never seize for axles upon installation. Hope this helps and the money saved means more gas for the tank. So get r done and get riding.:)
  6. kt23287

    kt23287 Member

    Thanks guys, pretty much what I thought. I have the manual and would of course yank the muffler, right side. I have seen a couple of shops do it and they just "bend" the muffler out of the way but that seems hard on the clamp so I would plan to take it off. I thought it would be easier to take the caliper off and line it back up after the wheel was back on, my main concern was trying visualize how the wheel comes out from under the rear fender, I guess I wll find out when the time comes.
    Thanks again..............before the new tires go on I also plan to powder coat the wheels black and paint red orange color on the rim lip and on the hub that currently has a black stripe on it.........
  7. Breeze3at

    Breeze3at Well-Known Member

    Once everything is disconnected, you tilt/angle (like DBMG mentioned) the tire wheel assembly out the side. I always stick a spring clothes pin or other wedge between the brake pads. The pistons have a tendency to move out a bit when disconnected, and it can be a little difficult to slip the disc back in when reassembling.
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2011
  8. fin_676

    fin_676 Experienced Member Staff Member Moderator Contributor

    When removing any wheel from any of my bikes i always take the calliper off first it is a lot easier to get the wheel back in place with the calliper out of the way
    use the lift have the wheel on the ground bike upright supported by the lift remove the axle pin and then raise the bike leaving the wheel on the floor if you have trouble getting the axle out use a 1/2" sq drive long extension to push it out
    when replacing the wheel place the wheel on the ground and use the lift to drop the bike into place is useful to have an assistant to operate the lift while you get the spacers in place
    clean and service the calliper prior to refitting it