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Richard Fisher

Removal of hardened rubber tyres

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Evening All,

 

As part of my Vickers MG Collection, I've recently acquired a handcart used by the Irish Free State Army that was used to transport the Vickers they used. I've completely stripped it down to restore it; however, the one bit I am stuck on is the tyres.

 

It is fitted with a pair of 3.25 x 19 tyres, on spoked wheels, which according to the seller are adapted BSA wheels (hence my reason for posting on this board). They are both in reasonable condition and are W/I\D moulded in the rubber so I would like to keep them. They will never need to be road-legal and will not be subjected to the stresses and strains of use again so I'd like to be able to keep the same ones on there; however, the rubber seems to have hardened a bit. Can anybody advise on the best way to remove them? Whether any lubricant (vaseline, fairy liquid etc.) is needed or whether warming prior to removal will work? Open to suggestions and ideas. Only done car tyres that not worried about splitting or cycle tyres before.

 

I've uploaded a couple of photos onto my website of the cart.

 

handcart01.jpg

 

http://www.vickersmachinegun.org.uk/world-ireland.htm

 

Regards

 

Richard

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Richard, I fit most of my own tyres myself. With modern soft rubber you can almost tread them on. But removing tyres is always harder and especially when they are old fashioned with hard rubber. In that case I take them to my local motorcycle shop (Poole Motorcycles) Where they have one of the modern revolving hydraulic machines. They don't usually charge me to remove a tyre or two. But I'd happily pay a fiver each to save the agg!

I have this Airborne handcart which I will also have to address soon. Ron

C4.JPG

Edited by Ron

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The old tyre guru, now sadly retired at my local Hi Q always recommend the cheapest washing liquid you could find and if small enough, soak the whole lot in solution for a week.

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There are two ways you can go if you are going to do a full rebuild you can cut the spokes and then cut the rim from the tyre to save it. ore you can use boiling hot water and a lot of fairy liquid taking care not to bend the rim ore stretch the rubber as this will be on the hard side with not much give in it and this will make the tyre two big for the rim when it goes back on. But to start with I who’d place the wheel flat on the ground and use lots of WD40 on the joint between the rim and the tyre as there will be a lot of rust between them which will hold them together like concrete so take your time.

but do you need to take it off at all . Cheers Bill :undecided:

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I'd go on the basis that you'd never get them off and on again without damage to the tyres. If the tyres are important to you, just take the rims with tyres still on and get them bead-blasted then paint the rims. Bead blasting shouldn't hurt them.

 

External rubber protection is best provided by the rubber primer available for house roof repairs. It is clear, gooey, and once it cures you can't shift it - be warned. A coat of that would fill cracks and splits. If you need them to hold weight I'd be tempted to 'inflate' them with builders polyurethane foam or the like, for a run flat effect.

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Thanks for the advice given so far. There's a few options to consider there. I think I'll try first with washing up liquid and see how far I get, without any damage, and then progressively work up towards some of the other options but, as a last resort, I like the idea of the foam filling.

 

Regards

 

Richard

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OKO and similar products are not made to fill tyres, they are merely sealants to stop punctures.

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It was having seen Builders Foam expand, the eyes watered at the thought of it in a tyre! :D I'm sure there is a tyre filler used for mountain bikes and such like, just couldn't think of the name. I have found OKO very useful for sealing up old small tyres to get them to keep air.

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I'll admit proper tyre filler would be better than builders foam, but you get the idea. Obviously not for road use.

 

When I needed similar tyres for my K-38 splicer trailer, I had to option of £300 each for Firestone reproductions or £30 each for Malaysian ones. Went with the cheap option.

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I'll admit proper tyre filler would be better than builders foam, but you get the idea. Obviously not for road use.

 

When I needed similar tyres for my K-38 splicer trailer, I had to option of £300 each for Firestone reproductions or £30 each for Malaysian ones. Went with the cheap option.

 

%^&&*( Were they gold plated?

:shocked:

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It's amazing what threads we read when on annual leave. Not into motorcycles but looked nevertheless.

 

Love the pic of the vickers cart.

 

I've had an Aust made 'jungle cart' for a while, used where the Australian Army operated in the latter part of ww2.

 

They were produced after finding Japanese carts useful. Sort of reverse copying!

 

I had the same problem with hard original tyres but the tyres were beyond help. (I cannot bring myself to throw them away) I found that trying to remove them the wire in the beads were breaking- rusty. More importantly I didn't want to damage the rims as they were rusting from the inside. so I cut one tyre off in the end.

 

Attached is a shot of the cart before the operation, and one from a collection of a Sgt in a field post office in New Guinea.

 

regards

 

Andrew B

100_2595.jpg

File0237.jpg

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Excellent little cart that! If you ever come across a photo of one stacked with Vickers MGs and ammunition, it means I'll want something else for the collection.

 

My tyres don't seem to be as bad as those. I'll be having a go a the weekend with the non-intrusive approach and seeing how it comes along. I'll let people know how it turns out.

 

Thanks

 

Richard

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Well, they finally came off yesterday, with much washing up liquid and some delicate use of tyre levers. Some minor damage to the canvas on the edge of the rims but the rubber remains sound and they didn't split. Now the tapes are off and all wire-brushed down ready to prime and have new tubes put in and the tyres back on.

 

I've secured a slightly different variant of the MG handcart as well so this one should be finished in March and the other one picked up at the end of the month.

 

Thanks for the advice on here.

 

Richard

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