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26-Apr-00 Mounting the Tires Part 2

Mounting the Tires Part 2

ImageInflating and seating the beads on the rear tires was a bit of a challenge – well not for these guys, but I never would have been able to do it myself. This is an air tank with an open-shut valve. They filled this up with 160lbs. of compressed air.
ImageThey held a shop rag against the rim (so the tool wouldn't touch it) and let-her-rip! Wow, what a blast! (pun intended) In a split second it seated the beads. I've heard of guys using ether and a match to do this on farm machinery and heavy equipment. You wouldn't catch me doing that though. The compressed air looks much safer!
ImageAfter the tires were aired up they went to the balancing machine. Here Eric is tapping out a center cap. These caps are held in place with an O-ring.
ImageHere's another reason I was impressed with Sioux Falls Tire. See the plate he's holding in his hand? Unlike most balancing machines that hold the wheel on with a cone in the center of the hub, this plate has 5 studs with lug-nut-shaped ends that go into the mounting holes in the rim. The wheel is drawn up tight to the machine just as if it were bolted on the car. Very cool!
ImageHere the adapter plate is installed and drawn up tight. I thought it would be cool to take this shot of the wheel spinning but my digital camera stopped the motion cold.
ImageEric is adding tape weights to a wheel in this photo. They didn't need much weight to get them perfect – and that's a good thing. Thanks Eric!

Don't worry, I'll show the finished wheels and tires in the next article.