I have three new Matco split rims and two leak air, have tried to tighten them and still no luck.Help Please

Views: 1447

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

Put a tube in it & forget about it. That has worked well for me for 5 yrs now.

Matco is a great outfit. George Happ has taught me just about everything I know with regards to aircraft wheels & brakes. As first-time builders, we're lucky to have access to folks like him.

I've usually had good luck with well-lubed o-rings, but one time I had a rim that simply refused to seal.  I did not want to resort to a tube as I wanted to keep the weight down and useful load up!  I gave it a shot of "Fix-a-Flat" or "Slime," (can't remember which!) and spun it around for a few minutes and it has remained sealed ever since.




I carry fixaflat in all my bikes, planes and vehicles. It's saved the day numerous times...rather than change a flat in a driving rain give it some fixaflat. Carry a compressor too. I got a leaking Matco and have so far given it 2 shots of fixaflat. we'll see...

I'm not disparaging Mr. Happ, nor Zenith, but when we've paid $1,135 for a set of wheels and tubeless tires from Zenith, and the Matco instructions include a section on tubeless tires, judging from the responses I'd say there's a problem. It's either a design, material, or installer instructions problem, but Matco and Zenith should get together and solve it. We should not have to put inner tubes or slime or fix a flat in a new aircraft wheel and tire assembly, nor bounce it or hit a tire with a hammer to fix leaks.

HI Charles,

Do you have the Tubeless kit that goes with them ??? Once you've bolted the 2 sides together, there is a big 'O' ring that slips over the joint. Make sure the 'O' ring is where it should be otherwise your rim will always leak. I had one where the 'O' ring got cought between the 2 sides and it was leaking big time.

Anyway, I tried the tubeless route and one rim was always leaking somewhat (slow leak). So, I ordered tubes and I installed them. No more problem.

Make sure the sides fit properly, sanding them smooth where they meet each other might do the trick...




Thanks to all that have responded, I have fixed the rims the fault lies with me in my haste I didn't think the process through and if I had it would have been self evident.

Can you at least give us a hint as to what the problem was?  ;>)


I hope he does. As a follow up to my situation, removing, inflating, and bouncing the leaking tire at max pressure did not solve the problem. Verified the rim is leaking from the inside where the two wheel halves join, so I'm now shopping for a bead breaker that won't damage those soft rims.

I had tubes in mine for a while and 600x6 6 ply tires for rough off field use. The tubes were heavy duty ones cause that's all I could get on short notice...heavy and expensive. I took those out a while back and got several #s off and intend to sell them. The problem I got with tubes is if operating in the boonies and have a flat we got a bigger problem than if running tubeless.I carry a plug kit and a can of fix a flat...that's worked for me on every motorcycle flat I've had(when running tubeless) and I was back going shortly. Not so if tubeless. So extra weight and money and another potential problem gone when dismounting the tubes.

I had one leaking and just kept pumping it back up with fix a flat and after 3 apps no more leaks.

OTOH, (I haven't done it) if I had a flat and no way to fix it and had to get out I'd just take off on the flat


I'm not sure why you need a bead breaker...I guess to break the tire loose before splitting the wheel? A big C clamp will break it loose or a shop press or any other number of ways that don't touch the wheel.


Did you use 6 ply utility/farm implement tires or "real" aircraft tires?  If utility/farm implement tires, were they a lot heavier than the 4 ply utility tires that Zenith supplies with the kit?

Since I don't need "super STOL" capability, I've been running 600 series 4-ply straight rib tires which are lighter than the 800 series as originally supplied by Zenith.  They work fine but they wear fairly quickly - my mains are getting a little thin after 3 years.  (However, they are only about $75 for three tires!!)  I was thinking a 6 ply might be more durable, but hate to eat into useful load if they are substantially heavier.



I used 6 ply Mccreary Airhawk a/c tires. 8#2oz each. The 800x6 Carlisle 4 ply as supplied by ZAC weighed 6#8oz and I ran those tubeless. The tubes varied from 1#10 oz to 1#14oz each. So as much as 10# even for the Airhawk/tube combination or 30#/set vs

19#8oz for the Carlisle set. +10#8oz...lotta weight. My 800x6 tires had 400 hours on them and were still ok but I was prepping for a trip to the Utah outback and changed them out.

I wouldn't go to 6 ply unless I had a good reason for it. It sounds like yours are wearing fast maybe you're mostly on pavement? I doubt 6 plies would wear much better if any, just carry more load and more puncture resistant


New from Zenith:

Zenith Planes For Sale 

Classified listing for buying or selling your Zenith building or flying related stuff...

Custom Instrument Panels
for your Zenith

Custom instrument panels are now available directly from Zenith Aircraft Company exclusively for Zenith builders and owners. Pre-cut panel, Dynon and Garmin avionics, and more.

Custom Upholstery Kits for your Zenith Aircraft:

Zenith Vinyl Upholstery Kits

Zenith Apparel from EAA:

Zenair Floats

Flying On Your Own Wings:
A Complete Guide to Understanding Light Airplane Design, by Chris Heintz

Builder & Pilot Supplies:

How to videos from HomebuiltHELP.com

Developed specifically for Zenith builders (by a builder) these videos on DVD are a great help in building your own kit plane by providing practical hands-on construction information. Visit HomebuiltHelp.com for the latest DVD titles.

Aircraft Insurance:


West Coast USA:

Pro Builder Assistance:


Transition training:

Golden Eagle Aviation

Pianosa Flying Farm

Aircraft Spruce & Specialty for all your building and pilot supplies!

© 2021   Created by Zenith.Aero.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service