How To Spike A Tire – Step 4

After you get all those little screws in the tire you are not quite done. If you try and use it “as is” you will get a flat very quickly. The last step you need to perform in order to get these to work well is to make a liner to protect the tube and support the spikes. I have heard stories from people who tried different things as liners with some success. Some say to use layers of duct tape or additional layers tubes but I personally believe that the best spiked tire liner is another tire. You wouldn’t want to use another knobby tire but instead choose something fairly slick. It should also be slightly smaller than the tire you spiked so it can fit nicely inside it. If your spike tire is a 2.1″ use a1.75″ tire as a liner. If you are spiking a 29er tire find some old hybrid 40mm wide thing. It can have a little bit of tread but smoother is better in this case. Once you have chosen your liner you will need to cut both of the beads off.


Make a starter slit in the sidewall of the tire near the bead and then use scissors to carefully cut all the way around. Again I say use scissors and  be careful to cut a neat straight line. Don’t do this part with a blade. For some reason it is easy to go off line and cut up into the rubber part of the tire. Try to avoid doing this as you want a smooth edge so it does not cause a punctured tube later on. Once both beads have been removed you can put the liner in the spiked tire and add a tube. You can usually use a slightly smaller diameter tube than you would if you had no spikes and no extra tire in there because those thing take up some extra room. Mount the whole conflagration on your wheel and you are ready to go. I usually run a fairly high air pressure in mine (45 psi or more). The reason is that spikes are better supported with more air pressure and less likely to flop over. They stay straighter and dig in better.

With these tires you will be surprised how much grip you have on ice even if it is wet or off-camber. They are also effective if the snow is very packed and approaching ice in consistency. They hook up on wood pretty well too whether it’s wet or dry and you can roll over wet diagonal roots without fear. Skinny logs that you might try in summer time are now much easier with these tires. Go Ride!