Dusting the inside of the tire with baby powder helps the tube move around as it expands, this will help prevent the possibility of kinks.After the tube is finagled into the tire, the valve stem needs to be placed adjacent to the red dot on the tire. Note how the tube at this point could be easily pinched by the wheel halves.
Looking at the above photo, one can see how the tube would be very easy to pinch if the wheel halves were installed now. Before installing the wheel halves, I turned down the regulator on the air compressor and also turned down the air valve on the end of the air hose so the air flowed very slowly. A small amount of air was pumped into the tube allowing it to draw itself into the tire and away from the center where the wheel halves will come together.
Placing a small amount of air into the tube will draw the tube into the tire and away from the center … now the wheel halves can be installed without much fear of pinching the tube.
There are three Allen hex head bolts that need to be removed to split the nosewheel halves. The hole in the wheel where the tube valve stem goes through is comprised of a half moon cut out on each wheel half. One of the wheel halves had a little edge around the cutout so it was sanded a little to make it smooth.
Nosewheel halves separated and ready to install onto the tire and tube.
I forgot to take a photo of installing the two nosewheel halves, nothing difficult here. Just slip the wheel halves in from either side of the tire and bolt them together, then torque. I looked on the Matco site and could not find a reference to use the washer and nut that comes with the tube. Actually, the way the wheel is built, there is really no way to get a wrench inside the small holes to tighten the nut. So I’m guessing that unlike the main gear which has brakes, they feel the washer and nut is not needed to lock the tube onto the nosewheel.
Moving onto the main gear wheels, the same procedure was used to dust the tires and tubes with baby powder then insert the tube into the tire and slightly inflate the tube to pull it into the tire and away from the center where the wheel halves mate. Note the center hub needs to be removed to allow enough clearance for the valve stem to be inserted into the wheel and to allow access for a wrench to tighten the washer and nut onto the valve stem. Unlike the nose wheel, Matco’s instructions call for installing the centering washer and nut onto the valve stem and tightening the tube to the wheel.
One can see the hub needs to be removed to allow enough clearance for the valve stem to be installed through the hole and slot in the wheel.
One issue I ran into was with the dimpled centering washer that is used to center the valve stem in the valve stem hole in the wheel. There was not enough threads showing for the nut to screw onto the valve stem. Matco address this issue in the instructions and mentions some tubes will have this issue and to just use an AN960-516 washer in place of the centering washer that comes with the tube.
Matco instructions saying to use an AN960-516 washer in place of the dimpled centering washer if there is not enough threads on the tube to use the centering washer supplied with the tube.
I tried using an AN960-516 washer and it does work … but as the nut is tightened the valve stem moves around in the hole which I did not like. So I played around a while and came up with a seemingly good solution. As can be seen in the following photo, the stock washer on the left is quite thick and has a recess in the center which centers the stem in the hole on the wheel.
The thick stock centering washer is on the left, AN960-516 washer in the center and a ground down centering washer on the right.
The nut is a larger diameter than the recess in the washer as can be seen in the following photos … so it can’t get down onto the threads. It appeared to me that by removing material to the level of the recess it would provide enough threads showing to get the nut started on the valve stem threads. This proved to be true.
One can see the nut is larger than the recess in the centering washer and can’t quite get onto the valve stem threads.The recess of the stock washer on the left can easily be seen in this photo. The washer on the right was ground down on the Scotch-Brite wheel and hand filed to even it out. This was later filed more to entirely remove the small remaining ridge altogether leading to success.
Final result, the washer is now flat on the nut side so the nut can now catch the threads on the valve stem and the dimple in the washer is left untouched so it can still center the valve stem in the hole on the Matco wheel.
As a side note, it is best to leave the center hub off until after the nut on the valve stem is tightened down … this will give the builder much more room for a wrench to tighten the nut onto the valve stem.
Finished instillation of the modified centering washer on the Matco wheel. Looking closely, one can see there are threads showing beyond the nut, so filing the washer down worked out great.
The same procedure as above was utilized when installing the tire and tube on the remaining matco main gear wheel.
Finished trifecta of wheels ready for instillation on the axles.