Keeping your Road King shod with good tires can ensure that every ride is a good ride.
The Road King represents Harley-Davidson’s commitment to building a high-quality touring motorcycle. Rolling with a good set of tires, the Road King can devour hundreds of freeway miles with ease. But even the best tires will eventually need replacement. You could opt to have the work done at your local Harley shop, but a great deal of money could be saved by doing the work yourself. The task is fairly straightforward, but a sturdy motorcycle lift is needed to safely remove the wheels from your motorcycle.
1. Place the motorcycle on a motorcycle-specific stand to lift the affected wheel off of the ground.
2. Remove the front wheel. Loosen the front axle cap nuts with a hex socket. Unbolt the front brake caliper, using a hex socket to remove both caliper bolts, and slide the caliper off of the brake rotor. Support the brake caliper against the front fork with a bungee cord. Loosen the axle nut with a hex socket and breaker bar then unscrew it completely. Tap the axle out of the front fork with a rubber mallet and pull it out completely. Lower the wheel to the ground. Remove the speedometer gear and spacers and set these aside.
3. Remove the rear wheel. Loosen the right muffler’s exhaust clamp with a screwdriver. Remove the muffler’s mounting bolt with a hex socket and pull the muffler off of the exhaust pipe. Loosen the rear wheel axle nut with a hex socket and a breaker bar the unscrew it completely. Remove the rear wheel adjuster cam and washers. Tap the axle out with a rubber mallet and pull it away from the motorcycle. Lower the rear wheel away from the motorcycle, sliding the brake rotor out of the rear brake caliper.
4. Set the wheel on a pair of wooden blocks, facing the brake rotor upwards. Remove the valve stem core with a core tool to deflate the tire.
5. Break the tire’s bead, or seal, with a bead breaker and press the tire downwards to create a gap between the tire and the edge of the wheel.
6. Slip the curved end of a tire iron between the tire and the wheel. Press the tire iron downwards towards the center of the wheel to stretch the tire over the wheel. Insert another tire iron between the tire and wheel, placing it at the section of tire where it meets the wheel, and press downward to stretch the tire up and over the wheel. Repeat until the entire upper edge of the tire has been removed from the tire.
7. Pull the tire upwards against the upper edge of the wheel. Stand the wheel up on the tire. Insert the curved end of the tire iron from the center of the wheel, under the tire, and hook it around the edge of the wheel. Position the wheel so that the tire iron is pointing upwards. Lift the tire iron towards you to force the tire completely off of the wheel.
8. Hook the lower edge of the new tire over the wheel. Stretch the remaining portion of the tire over the wheel using a tire iron. Push the tire downward to bring the upper edge of the tire closer to the wheel. Stretch the upper edge of the tire over the wheel with a tire iron.
9. Set the tire’s bead using an air compressor to quickly inflate the tire through the valve stem. Stop inflating the tire once two loud pops are heard. Allow the tire to deflate slightly before reinstalling the valve stem core with a core tool. Inflate the tire to your desired tire pressure. Reinstall the tire onto the motorcycle.