Rim Locks Print

Rim Locks

Dave Wendler (CC/BEP) wrote:

I live in Washington DC and ride a 1979 XS1100 F which needs "rim locks" for the rear mag wheel. The rim locks fit into two holes along the inner rim of the wheel. Presently there are just holes and since the tire on it is tubeless, the air escapes out of the holes. Does anyone know where I might be able to get the rim locks that would fit (none of the stores that I tried in the DC area have them) or something else that people put in the holes when they use tires with tubes. Thanks for any info.


Your rims REQUIRE inner tubes, don't try to ride with out them. Tubeless rims are tested to be leak free and the area where the bead seats is shaped a little differently. It's not safe to run tubeless tires on a rim that isn't marked "Tubeless". Check your front rim and add a tube there, also, if needed.

(Yeah, I know, I've run tubeless on non-tubeless rims also, but I know better.....)

Any motorcycle shop should be able to provide rim locks for you as well as tubes. The rim locks aren't absolutely essential but they are a big safety factor and I recommend you use them.

Rim Locks are rubber blocks that fit between the tire's beads and have a center stud that passes through the rim and is "locked" with a nut. When the nut is tightened, the rim lock presses the tire's beads apart and forces the beads tightly against the rim. They prevent the tire from rotating if it should go soft. If the tire did rotate it would rip the valve stem from the tube and cause an immediate flat.

They make the tire a royal PITA to change! The nut must be loosened, the rim lock pushed to the center of the tire and held there while you try to lever the tire off the rim. Getting it back on is even less fun! When tubeless tires came along, rimlocks sorta vanished and I don't think anyone misses them, but dirt bikes still have them.

David R. Norton
PS. If you get rid of the rim locks, what do you put in the holes in the rim?

Slice up an innertube about 3/4" to 1" wide and put it around the rim then the real innertube then the tire.

Jim Hamilton