View Full Version : Tricks to seat a small tubeless tire??

03-20-2012, 09:21 AM
I have a Pro-Sulky with 4.10-4 tubeless tires purchased new last fall.

For some reason one of the tires went completely flat over the winter and of course came unseated from the rim.

In the past with this small wheels (maybe not quite this small) I have been able to wrap a rope around the tread to force the tire to expand and contact both sides of the rim. Give it a good shot of air and good to go. No such luck with this little critter. I even tried cinching it harder with a ratchet strap, but no go.

I am using a homeowner type Sears compresser. I am wondering if I need to take this to a tire shop where they can give it a shot of high volume air while they wiggle the tire around to get it close enough to seat.

Any oither ideas on what I can try before I go for professional help?

I've heard of an old (military?) trick using a shot of starting fluid and a lighter, but that sounds insane.

03-20-2012, 09:35 AM
I have the same tires on my sulker for my John Deere Walk Behind.

If anything, I would try setting it down, make sure the bottom side is against the bead first. Use a flat head tool, or a hook and pry up on the top side of the tire bead and pump it full of air. It sounds difficult but its your best shot before trying the ether trick....

Ether it will or Ether it won't. Good Luck

03-20-2012, 10:41 AM
the starting fluid works, you don't have to use much. and then put air in it before it cools. :):)

03-20-2012, 01:39 PM
Tighten a strap around the center of the diameter of the tire so the sides will squish out. Then add some air, remove the strap and finish filling with air.

Now, I finish reading your post and see that you've tried this.:hammerhead:

03-20-2012, 01:46 PM
A strap is what I've used in the past but even a rope tied around the outside circumference of the tire to be tightened by twisting a stick would work.
The idea is to mash the bead down evenly around the rim while you inflate.

03-20-2012, 02:07 PM
X3 on the small rope and twist stick. Works every-time, aired up 2 this am this way.

03-20-2012, 02:28 PM
First thing you need to do is go get a can of bead sealer and coat the rim where the tire seats.

03-20-2012, 03:48 PM
Thx guys. I think I'll give up on the strap as it buckles/deforms the tire enough so it doesn't form to the bead well.

I'll try the rope with a stick and if that doesn't work I'll get some bead sealer and see if that gives me enough of a seal to get some air into this bad boy.

Hate it when what should be simple stuff like this kicks my butt.....

03-20-2012, 04:11 PM
The bead sealer will keep the tire glued to the wheel so this won't happen again. You need to do this to these small tires.

piston slapper
03-20-2012, 07:33 PM
The only time I use bead sealer is on rusted or pitted rims.
I use a clipon hands free air chuck and 130 psi of air.
Spray dilluted dishsoap on the tire and rim and collapse the tire to the rim by hand.

Restrorob posted the easiest way to seat tires awhile back......somewhere in this forum.
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03-20-2012, 07:44 PM
Ok dudes - here's the scoop:

Tried most of the above several times and finally pulled the tire off the rim. Lo and behold the bead on the inside (where I couldn't see it) was toast. Must have been a tire defect or it was torn when it was installed at the factory. This thing was never run flat and was holding air when put away last fall - plus it can't have mree than 2-3 hours of use.

Not sure if it's even worth the hassle to go for a warranty replacement.

Thanks for all the help.

03-20-2012, 07:57 PM
Good luck with the warrantie

03-20-2012, 08:30 PM
Put a tube in it and keep mowing......

03-20-2012, 08:32 PM
Good idea on the tube. Getting slow in my old age. I assume finding a little critter like that isn't too hard?

03-20-2012, 10:16 PM
I assume finding a little critter like that isn't too hard?

Common as water.....

03-21-2012, 08:36 AM
Yeah, just checked and they have them at Tractor Supply for $8.

Thanks for the help everyone. Don't know how something that should have been so simple turned so complicated.....it sure was nice to have the support of all you folks, though.

03-21-2012, 04:50 PM
Just a final post mortem on this. I sent Selbro (sulky mfr) a note via their web site and explained the issue. They said while they don't normally warrantee tires due to the potential for abuse (and I agree with that), they didn't think that was the case here and offered to send me a tire off one their protoypes.

All in all, this was probably more work than getting a tube, but far more satisfying.

Selbro - Nice guys. Good customer support. Very satisfied cusotmer. Isn't that what it's all about?