[...The rear tire is hard to change...]
I've had the rear wheel off my NT probably a dozen times, either to change tires or to try different things with the rear shock. As crazy as it sounds, I found that removing the right saddlebag and saddlebag lid was well worth the extra 20-minutes it took to remove these items. With those removed, you can actually SEE the complete rear wheel, brake caliper mount, etc. At first the guys on the NT sites (US & UK) probably thought I was totally freaking nuts but I've made more than a few converts to this method.