Hopefully the odds will be with you...that you will be getting most of your flat tires on the front tire-the one that usually catches everything first. But on some days the odds will be against you. You may even just decide that you need to replace your old tires. Heck, you may even be upgrading your wheelset to something lighter and more aero.
Who is this for?This is a VERY BASIC and non-technical tutorial for the absolute beginner who has never taken their rear-wheel off before.
Why does this warrant a tutorial? It will just make life easier. Sure, you can muddle through it your first time and curse the chain as to why it's being belligerent into not coming off of the rear cassette. You can even get real greasy and dirty by messing around with the process in an unreasonable amount of time. I'm sure you will figure out how to do it efficiently given a few tries. But why?
Let me be the one getting dirty. Let me show you how to get this, seemingly simple, task completed. This tutorial is ~25minutes long. In practice, it should only take you a minute or two. In this tutorial, I will first remove the tire off of a triathlon frame with horizontal dropouts and then I will remove a wheel off of a mountain bike frame with vertical dropouts.
I didn't get into this detail during the 'Fixing a Flat' video, it's just something I took for granted. But from a few responses, it's not something to take for granted, especially for the uninitiated.
Why is this a difficult task?Well, unlike the front wheel where you just disconnect the brake and release the quick-release lever to the tire axle and out it drops, the rear wheel cassette (the part with all of the sprockets of varying diameters) has the chain attached to it which can be troublesome if you are trying to take the rear wheel off of the bike and you left the chain on a large-diameter sprocket on the rear cassette.
Besides that, the whole derailleur is spring loaded to keep tension on the chain. So if you have the chain in the large sprockets, depending on the type of drop-out you have, it will be hard having enough free chain to get it out of the drop-outs.
Removing your rear wheel
Fix your tire if needed.
Putting your wheel back on