After 58 years, I own an early Model T, so I am learning. From a fire hose!!
Mounting new tires and tubes on new rebuilt wood felloe clincher wheels with new rims.
New Firestone "Non Skid" tires with metal stem tubes and all appropriate hardware.
Seeking comments/opinion on whether the tire rubber clincher area needs to be relieved to accommodate the tube stem before it goes into the rim?.
Ron, some guys do, some don't. I tried it once on one tire, when I removed it this winter (one of the white turned to brown tires) discovered that in the install process the stem moved away from the relief anyway. The other 3 tires were left "as is", no troubles with them.
Generally no relief required Ron. The sidewalls of the new clinchers are much weaker and naturally spread apart to allow room for the valve stem. It may be a little more difficult on your 3" fronts but try and do it without. Just about to go and mount 2 tyres on my 16' so will be thinking of you as I do it. I find having the wheels on the car best. make sure the tires are as warm as possible, heat in the sun outside or in your shop near a heater. I inflate the tube until it takes up shape inside the tyre, push the valve stem through the hole in the felloe, tie off the tube stem with a zip tie so it cannot pull back through the hole while I then start pushing both beads over he rim and work my way around. A liberal coating of talcum powder helps the tyre slip onto the rim easier. I can generally do this without using tyre irons and therefor risk no damage to the paint. Good luck.I might record my method as I do it for reference.
Here are pictures that might be helpful.
Oooppppps.I posted on the wrong post....sorry.
Ron, it is not necessary to notch the beads. If you measure the width of the rim and the width of the beads, there is plenty of room.
The problem comes when trying to push one bead into the rim and it won't stay where it is put while you try to put the stem through the hole. It is all down to technique. If the tube is first put in the tyre and inflated just enough to hold its shape, there is still room to fit. I put BOTH beads and the stem in place on the rim and use a large clamp to hold the whole lot in place. Then I lever both sides on at the same time, working alternatively each side of the valve stem. Towards the end the back side will go on and the last bit of the outside will need to be levered on separately.
I have never fitted new Firestones. Pre fitted ones will go on this way. Given Firestone's reputation for difficult fitting, it may be a good idea to use some stretching method before trying to mount them.
I have just fitted two new tubes in old Olympic 30 x 3.5 clinchers. One tyre had been notched for the valve stem, and the bead was broken at this point!
it fitted up nicely using my method. If it was levered on, it most likely would have destroyed the bead at that point.
Hope this helps.
Allan from down under.
Ron, I attempted to make a video of my tyre mounting this morning. Might be some clues for you there? Your long metal stems wont require holding in place. That is one advantage of using original correct equipment. I have cheated and used the flashy brass one piece repo valve covers to screw onto the rubber stems! One rear and one front was mounted successfully today without the use of a tyre iron. what does not show in the video is me working the bottom secton on with my foot and knees.
I've found that the magic tools that make the task of changing Model T tires much easier are a few jumbo-sized C-clamps. Now, I've heard of petrified tires that were so difficult to dismount, some owners actually resorted to power-saws (No, I'm not kidding). But really, it's not necessary to resort to weapons of mass destruction. I don't care how stiff and old the tires are, for none are tough enough to withstand the irresistible mechanical advantage of a big set of heavy-duty C-clamps. The clamps WILL break the bead (but do yourself a favor; let the air out first). Once having crushed the tire smaller than the rim, the rest is just a matter of levering the tires off with a set of tire irons. Again, mechanical advantage comes into play here, as a tire iron is nothing more than a nasty ol' crowbar, ideally sized and shaped for wrestling rubber.
If you're at all into airplanes, you know that take-offs require somewhat less finesse than landings, and that's mostly because the sky is a much larger target to hit than is a runway. By the same token, it take easier to remove a tire than to mount one.
When it's time to mount a new tire, you'll want to check the metal rim for any sharp edges or burrs. A wire brush comes in handy for cleaning that up. I use a couple of layers of duct tape on the inside of the rim to protect the inner tube.
Lay that new tire in the sun to soften the rubber and make it more pliable. It's more difficult with cold tires. Apply corn-starch (because talcum powder is unhealthy to accidentally inhale) to your inner-tube, the inside of your tire and the flap, if you're using a flap. Everything slides easier that way.
Pump just enough air into the inner tube to give it shape (because if it's limp, it's almost certain to get pinched). If you look inside the tire, you should be able to find the section where the inner fabric of the tire overlaps. For balance purposes, you'll want the air valve on the opposite side of the tire, across from that overlap, so stuff the tube into the tire accordingly. In my experience, there is not enough room in a 30x3 Firestone NON-SKID tire for a flap, but you might have better luck getting one into a regular tread 30x3 1/2 rear tire. Mr. Ford didn't install flaps in the tires and I don't use them, either.
Now, assuming you're doing the job with the wheel on the car: Get one section of the tire clinchers (both sides) in the rims, spin that section to the bottom and lower the car jack so there's some weight on it. That'll help hold things in place while you're working your way around the rest of the tire. Using the C-clamps whenever you can instead of the tire irons will help prevent punching holes in the inner tube (one jaw of the clamp against the metal rim and the other jaw against the opposite rubber sidewall).
With the tire loosely inside the rim all the way around, it's time to jack the car back up. The clinchers won't seat until you put some significant air pressure in the tube—and by the way, unless you're a masochist, use an electric air pump (If you ARE a masochist, use a hand-pump and then go sit on a cactus). While you're inflating, you can help the seating process along with a rubber mallet as you slowly spin the wheel around (smack the tread, not the sidewalls). Once seated, it's possible that, unless you're using flaps, the inner tube may have gotten pinched between the clinchers while seating the bead, so deflate the tire again and then re-inflate. While you're re-inflating, slowly spin the wheel and keep smacking the tire with the rubber mallet. Why? Because by that point, it just feels so good to hit something.
Fixing a flat sounds more difficult than it is. If I can do it, Lucy and Ethel can do it better. For you? Piece of cake.