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ADV ProductsRabaconda: Change Your Tires In Three Minutes or Less?

Rabaconda: Change Your Tires In Three Minutes or Less?

 Can the Rabaconda change adventure bike tires in 3 minutes as claimed?

Published on 12.31.2019
Tire changes are generally eagerly anticipated about as much as a visit to the dentist. Cursing an inanimate rubber ring with bloody knuckles clenching and waving tire levers around like magic wands gone rogue is not how most enjoy spending an afternoon. A device that can turn this process into a painless exercise, requiring three minutes or less to complete would be a miracle, and Rabaconda has made it. Abracadabra! 

The Rabaconda “3-Minute Tire Changer” was originally developed for fast tire changes on dirt bikes using mousses. A host of enduro riders, including Graham Jarvis, are named on the Rabaconda website as users of this product. The lightweight unit fits into a carrying case which can be brought to track days or races, and quickly set up in a shop, field, or most any other location with a relatively flat surface. 

ADV Pulse wondered how the device would adapt to use with adventure bike wheels. In the context of this test, we used the Rabaconda as a tire changer with both tubed and tubeless setups on a variety of different-sized machines We successfully used the Rabaconda to change tires on everything from the Kawasaki Versys-X 300, Honda Africa Twin, KTM 1090 Adventure and more.

How It Performed 

Setting up the Rabaconda is quick, and made easier by wheel size markings along the three base supports. While these serve as initial points when selecting a wheel size, variances in rim design mean small adjustments are sometimes necessary to allow the wheel to spin freely on the changer. Once the three supports are adjusted and clamped down, the wheel is placed on the Rabaconda with a centering shaft through the hub. Included in the kit are a 20mm spindle and 24mm adaptor sleeve that works with wheel axle diameters common on most dirt bikes. They also offer optional 12-18mm and 28mm spindle adaptors for bikes with different sized hub bearings. 


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The bead breaker is then placed at the edge of the rim, and more than ample leverage is provided by the long lever arm to quickly and easily break the bead. With one hand spinning the wheel on the stand, and the other operating the bead breaker, the bead is separated from the rim in seconds. Tire levers are then used to pull the bead to the outside of the rim, at which point the tube (if installed) can be removed. 

Sometimes we did notice when flipping the wheel over, the spindle adapter sleeve would raise with the hub as the wheel was removed from the tire changer. Minor gripe, but adapter sleeves that lock in place would be preferable. Once flipped, simply use the bead breaker lever to again go around the tire, completely separating it from the wheel – a process that again requires only seconds.

Being designed for dirt bikes, the wider rear rims on some adventure bikes can cause a minor hiccup in the process at this point, as the travel distance of the bead breaker bar is just a few millimeters short of what’s necessary to completely push the tire off the far side (low side, or side facing the ground). It still works on wider rims, just requires a little extra nudge with your hands once the bead breaker reaches its limit. 

Installing a tire is even easier than removing one with the Rabaconda. Once the old tire falls from the wheel to the ground, simply apply some tire mounting lubricant to the bead of the new one and push one side onto the rim (be sure to check the directional arrows where applicable!). Install a tube if required, then use tire levers to go around roughly 80-90% of the bead. Once the last (and most difficult) portion of the bead remains, position the Rabaconda’s bead breaker on the sidewall at that spot and press down to finish installation. 

The Rabaconda easily stows away into a duffel carry on.

Watch the linked video to see an awkward first attempt at using this machine resulted in a less than two-minute tire swap on a KTM 790 Adventure R with tubeless tires! Based on our experience, roughly two minutes would be added to the time if installing a tube. A valve stem fishing tool will make things a whole lot easier and faster.

Tire Iron Choices

While any tire iron will work with the Tire Changer, Rabaconda offers an optional PRO Tyre Iron Kit, which includes five long irons. In addition to providing greater leverage to ease the changing process, these longer levers are designed to work with a special catch at the base of the bead breaker acting as an extra hand holding the bead in place. When changing a moussed tire, use of all five levers makes the process vastly easier. With a tubed or tubeless tire, the process can be done with as few as two levers. Whether you use longer or shorter irons is really up to user preference. 

Who Is it For 

The Rabaconda tire changer is appropriate for anyone who owns a motorcycle, and wishes to do tire changes on their own. It would be an especially welcome addition to the garage of anyone who owns multiple bikes, and rides often enough to go through multiple sets of tires on a regular basis. Solid build quality and practical design makes this tire changer a contender for use with a race team or even a small shop as well. Those who take their bikes to a shop for tire changes may find that the Rabaconda makes things easy enough to begin doing it at home, allowing them to save both time and money.

Our Verdict

While designed for dirt bikes, the Rabaconda Tire Changer is worth a look for adventure riders who swap rubber often, and are looking for easier and quicker options beyond changing tires on the ground. By dramatically easing the process of changing a moussed tire, adding this tire changer to one’s garage might even encourage trying out mousses for more aggressive off-road adventure bike rides on an appropriate bike. Quick to set up and easy to store, it’s a practical addition to any DIY motorcyclist’s stable of tools.

What We Liked

  • Under two-minute tire changes with tubeless!
  • Extra leverage saves energy and busted knuckles.
  • Convenient storage case saves space.

What Could Be Improved

  • Two-piece sleeved center shaft sometimes “binds” when flipping wheel.
  • Bead breaker travel slightly too short for wider rims.

Shopping Options

Rabaconda (Standard)Rabaconda (ADV Kit)

Author: Jon Beck

Jon Beck is fulfilling a dream of never figuring out what to be when he grows up. Racing mountain bikes, competitive surfing, and touring as a musician are somehow part of what led Jon to travel through over 40 countries so far as an adventure motorcycle photographer, journalist, and guide. From precision riding for cameras in Hollywood, to refilling a fountain pen for travel stories, Jon brings a rare blend of experience to the table. While he seems happiest when lost in a desert someplace, deadlines are met most of the time.

Author: Jon Beck
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8 thoughts on “Rabaconda: Change Your Tires In Three Minutes or Less?

  1. Could you put a fat washer or spacer on the center pin of the changer before dropping the wheel on? This might lift the wheel up a few MM and allow you to get the tire completely off of wider ADV rims ….If that works then you have a super easy way to adjust for wider rims….It would also allow me to brag about being a frigging genius!

    • It’s a good thought, however the wheel rests on the three perimeter supports which keeps it stable and provides the support for the bead breaker lever to operate. Raising the hub would lift the rim away from the supports, creating instability.

      In the end, the issue was a minor one which only seems to affect certain tire/rim combinations. Guessing with a couple more tire changes the technique would be honed to find that “sweet spot” for the bead breaker to be positioned.

  2. Bought one of these last year and have now changed roughly 8 tires on my 1090r and few buddies bikes (klr, gs800). Would highly recommend.

    Works as advertised. Way easier than using the small irons I pack with me when on trips. This doesn’t replace those as you still need to be prepared to do a tire change in the field. But for garage use this thing is awesome. Next step is researching balancing equipment for my work bench.

  3. I’d like to see that demo’d on a 17″ 4 ply rear Kenda 270. I had an actual motorcycle shop rip the sidewall out of this type of tire trying to remove it from the rim with a motorised tire changing machine. Those soft front adventure tires as in the video can usually be pushed on by hand.

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