I'm riding with Continental Gatorskin/Hardshell tyres and they are quite tough to get on the rim.

After attaching the tyre and inflating I notice there is a dip in the tyre at the point where I had to lever it on to the rim.

I've tried deflating and re inflating the tube and trying to adjust the seating of the rim but the dip always seems to be there.

I notice the bump when riding and am a little concerned that at higher speed a little less traction might be an issue.

I'm hoping the tyre will eventually correct itself as it appears to be mishaped following the force required to get it on but might I have permanently damaged the tyre?

Does anyone have similar experiences or have any solutions? OR maybe this is normal when fitting very tight tyres?!

  • Some tough tyres need to be pumped up harder than you'd think to get the bead to seat nicely. Some clean water can act as a lubricant that will later evaporate if friction is the issue. Unless you've gouged the tyre with a metal lever it's unlikely to be damaged
    – Chris H
    Jun 2, 2014 at 12:30
  • 1
    While I do not have experience with these tires, some tire / wheel combinations are a notoriously tight fit. But I don't see such problems with these tires, so I don't think that's the problem. Do you stretch the tire before levering it on?
    – andy256
    Jun 2, 2014 at 12:31
  • 2
    First thing to do is to deflate the tire to about 5 psi and roll it along the ground for 10-20 feet, then reinflate. This often solves such problems. Next try simply tugging at the low spot as you inflate. If that doesn't do it, dismount the tire and assure that the tube is not twisted or doubled over at the low spot. And if the low spot is at the valve, very likely the tube is undersized. Jun 2, 2014 at 14:31
  • 1
    The various comments (and the answer) are all worthwhile. Just to explain what I meant by "stretching" the tire ... when you've got one side of the tire on the rim, the valve in the valve hole, the tube inside the tire, and the second side of the tire almost all on: hold the wheel horizontal with the part of the tire you haven't seated closest to you, use both hands to grab the tire on the far side of the wheel, and pull the tire along the rim as you slide your hands along the tire toward you. You'll see nothing happen, but with practice the last bit of the tire will be easier to lever on.
    – andy256
    Jun 3, 2014 at 6:01
  • 1
    This happens less to me after I started lubricating tyre and rim with dish detergent before putting the tyre onto the rim. Feb 19, 2018 at 19:57

3 Answers 3


I used to get this a lot on my old 29er with Continental commuter tyres, large rim with tight tyre made for tough work getting the tyre on and off and often got similar flat-spots.

Check the max psi first but pumping up as hard as possible can ping the tyre beading back on to the rim wall, then deflate back down to your proffered pressure. If its still reluctant you can buy rim lube type stuff (could be a risky Google that, sorry) which is basically washing up liquid, so try that. Add a bit around the tyre wall / beading while its off rim and it will help ping on when you pressure up the tyre.

Track a pump will be your friend here.


Sometimes on tight tires the tube will get twisted inside and thus fail to inflate fully in that section. You may want to pop the tube out and do the whole thing over.


This happens to me a lot. One thing that helped solve it in my case was to pull/wiggle the tire side to side with just maybe 15 or 20 psi in the tire and then continue inflating once I'd eyeballed it in place.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.