Tubeless tyre system for road bikes

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Re: Tubeless tyre system for road bikes

Postby Comedian » Sun Apr 08, 2012 9:32 am

I am struggling with these a bit.

A friend had tubeless on his bike. He's a MTBer and has used this stuff before. He picked up something and it sprayed the sealant out all over the bike and him, leaving him stranded. He thought he didn't have to take spares which wasn't a good call.

So, he's got tyres and sealant that are heavier than normal, plus he has to carry all the usual spares as it isn't a 100% guarantee that you won't get a flat.

I'm not sure that the benefits outweigh the disadvantages over a good quality set of road tyres.
Once you can climb hills on a bike it's all downhill. :mrgreen:

Hopefully I'll know what that's like..... one day. :shock: :lol:

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by BNA » Sun Apr 08, 2012 3:24 pm

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Tubeless tyre system for road bikes

Postby toolonglegs » Sun Apr 08, 2012 3:24 pm

With mtb'ers there is zero to struggle with... Tubeless is the norm now unless you are at the elite pointy end then you maybe running tubulars.
But you still carry a spare as we ride over rough terrain and nothing will seal a 1 or 2 cm cut.
Edit... Sorry you weren't clear if he was on Mtb or road?... But same applies to road... Especially in oz where you love glass everywhere!.
I haven't been bothering with tubeless lately as punctures are such a rare thing here!.
Get my first tubular rim next week :-) ... A nice 82 mm front!.
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Re: Tubeless tyre system for road bikes

Postby Comedian » Sun Apr 08, 2012 3:38 pm

toolonglegs wrote:With mtb'ers there is zero to struggle with... Tubeless is the norm now unless you are at the elite pointy end then you maybe running tubulars.
But you still carry a spare as we ride over rough terrain and nothing will seal a 1 or 2 cm cut.
Edit... Sorry you weren't clear if he was on Mtb or road?... But same applies to road... Especially in oz where you love glass everywhere!.
I haven't been bothering with tubeless lately as punctures are such a rare thing here!.
Get my first tubular rim next week :-) ... A nice 82 mm front!.

Yeah... look I guess that was what I was trying to say. I've had one puncture so far this year on the roadie - that's one for three thousand k. It just seems ilke a lot of hassle and expense to offset the odd puncture. Maybe if I rode somewhere where punctures were more common or used more puncture prone tyres..
Once you can climb hills on a bike it's all downhill. :mrgreen:

Hopefully I'll know what that's like..... one day. :shock: :lol:

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Re: Tubeless tyre system for road bikes

Postby visrealm » Tue Apr 10, 2012 12:05 pm

I think for heavier (100+ Kg) riders, road tubeless is an absolute win!

I used to have to pump my regular clinchers to 125-130 PSI (above the rated 120PSI MAX) to reduce the chance of pinch flatting, but it still occured. Before tubeless, I flatted alot (almost alway pinch flat) - I'm not hard on the gear, don't ride unsealed roads, try to avoid most things, but all it takes a a small stone and it's tube-replacing time. Since I've put tubeless on.. not a single flat. For me personally, they're absolutely brilliant and well worth the additional cost.

I think for a lighter rider, tubeless would be seen as unnecessary trouble and expense. There is a definite place for tubeless though and that's on the bike of a heavy rider!
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Re: Tubeless tyre system for road bikes

Postby Jake » Tue Apr 17, 2012 3:41 pm

Just fitted tubeless to my Bontrager Classics. All good so far, just need this bloody rain to stop so I can go for a road test!
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Re: Tubeless tyre system for road bikes

Postby MichaelB » Tue Apr 17, 2012 4:16 pm

Clearing some excess stuff out of the shed, and have some tubeless tyres, valves etc ready to install for some lucky buggar :lol:

http://www.bicycles.net.au/forums/viewtopic.php?f=25&t=51731
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Re: Tubeless tyre system for road bikes

Postby hotshod » Mon Apr 23, 2012 2:06 pm

Here is a follow up to my previous post on tubeless tyres...

After 3-4 weeks equalling 600+ ks I am extremely happy with the Hutch F3. I replace the original set of valves with a pair of Stans 44mm because I could see the Stans NoTubes would seat and seal better. So for the first few weeks I ran without sealant no problem though I was loosing about 6-10 psi in a 24-40 hr period. Now with the new valves and sealant added I tend to loose about 3-5 psi overnight, maybe even less. I chose to only add 35ml of sealant , which I figure should be enough for a road tyre. I think I'll probably check it out in 3-4months time to see if it is still liquid and doing its job.

Ride quality is still impressive on our chunky Nth Coast roads. At 75kg I'm running 90/100 psi, I might be able to run lower than that but will wait and see ,as that feels about the right air for me.
If there is any negative it would be the tryes are slipping a bit when climbing out of the saddle in the wet , but probably no more than others I have used. Plus I know my position is too far forward, but hey... that's me.
I would say one of the greatest positives is the road feel when decending fast on poor chunky agregate, the F3 feels 50% more secure than HP clinchers at 120psi.

What I have found really strange is the reaction from all the LBS, every one of them think I'm crazy , and possessing a death wish and quite frankly their lack of knowledge and ignorance surrounding the use of tubeless tryes is worrying. ( I wouldn't trust them to adjust a seat or pump up a tyre ). I now know whats holding back the introduction of this technology, "Retail Ignorance" and conservative attitudes.

As for me, I'm a fan

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Re: Tubeless tyre system for road bikes

Postby Crawf » Mon Apr 23, 2012 2:57 pm

You can get away with allot lower pressures than that, @86kg I never go over 80psi f/r. By the end of the commuting week they are usually down to 50/60 and still feel great. I think most road tubeless users are still putting in way to much psi.
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Re: Tubeless tyre system for road bikes

Postby hotshod » Mon Apr 23, 2012 10:17 pm

Crawf wrote:You can get away with allot lower pressures than that, @86kg I never go over 80psi f/r. By the end of the commuting week they are usually down to 50/60 and still feel great. I think most road tubeless users are still putting in way to much psi.


You maybe right Crawf , but I'm not commuting ..... I'm wanting to keep up with and hammer out some fast training rides with a bunch of old guys who want to beat me up when ever they can. I was use to the bone jarring ride that came from HP clinchers @120psi and they felt hard and fast.
I know at 90/100 I'm still rolling past these guys , with a huge comfort factor , but I don't want the tyres to be dead for the sake of added comfort.

( thinking out loud!!)
I guess it wouldn't hurt to run 85/90 for a couple of sessions, before I pass comment......Tomorrow

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Re: Tubeless tyre system for road bikes

Postby toolonglegs » Tue Apr 24, 2012 12:27 am

Give it a go at the lower pressures... you might be surprised!.
Wish I had had tubeless yesterday instead of latex... loud bang on the start line is never a good sign :roll: .
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Re: Tubeless tyre system for road bikes

Postby Cruiserman » Wed Apr 25, 2012 9:40 am

hotshod wrote:
What I have found really strange is the reaction from all the LBS, every one of them think I'm crazy , and possessing a death wish and quite frankly their lack of knowledge and ignorance surrounding the use of tubeless tryes is worrying. ( I wouldn't trust them to adjust a seat or pump up a tyre ). I now know whats holding back the introduction of this technology, "Retail Ignorance" and conservative attitudes.

As for me, I'm a fan

hotshod ..... Alstonville


Guess they are still running crossplys and tubes in their cars too. Oh well. The problem most of them have is the mark up on tubes is huge - tubeless = no tubes and a source of repeat revenue gone.
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Re: Tubeless tyre system for road bikes

Postby sblack » Wed Apr 25, 2012 11:37 pm

Think it's about time I put up a bit of review of my tubeless conversion which I have been running for most of this month. As a background I had been running Soul S3.0 Wide wheels (19mm internal width) with 23mm GP4000S. I weigh around 75kg and was running 70 psi front and 90 rear. While I had been happy with that setup with my mostly solo riding around the Illawarra my Oppy experience last month had taught me that one: 70psi might be fine when you have a clear view in front of you but when following someone else's wheel it's a lot easier to hit something and end up with your first ever pinch flat and two: on road's like the M4 shoulder the puncture risk is much higher and the self repairing nature of tubeless with sealant can be a major blessing. All in all I had 5 flats on one 360km ride that would most likely have been avoided by running a tubeless setup. I'd also say that while my puncture rate is generally only one every month or so it's still an inconvenience that would be nice to avoid.

So after the horror Oppy ride I ordered a Fusion 3 conversion kit and at the start of the month set to the conversion. I watched the Stan's video and pretty much followed their instructions. The one exception was that not having a suitable file handy I did as best I could with a blade to clear the tape around the valve hole but it could probably still use a file for a better result and better seal with the valve. After taping up my first rim it was time to fit the first tyre. Having heard of how tough it could be I was prepared for a bit of effort and the use of levers to get the tyre on. To my surprise, while a little tougher than the GP4000S, I was able to get the tyre on without using the levers. My concern now was that if the tyre went on so easy perhaps sealing would be an issue or that I may even need a CX rim strip for the system to work.

After inflating with an inner tube as directed I left that wheel and started on the other and then left them to watch a TV show and give the tube time to press the new rim tape down fully. Then it was time to find out just how hard getting a seal would be. With the tubeless valve now in place and it's core removed I went to my wife's saddlebag to grab the only once before used CO2 inflator, put a canister in, screwed down the top and emptied it into the air as if failed to seal. That's ok, we bought a box of 30 and had only used 1 in the past year and a half. So I checked to make sure I was doing it right before grabbing a second canister only to find the same result. Checking everything I still couldn't see any cause for what was happening, maybe I wasn't screwing the top on square so I tried with a third being extra careful to check alignment. This time the top would go right down. I unscrew it to find the bit that pierces the canister had broken and I had no way of using the box of canisters sitting there. Annoyed that the thing that was meant to make the process easier had done nothing but cause frustration without even getting to attempt inflating the tyre. Oh well, at least this had happened to me at home rather than to my wife on the side of the road trying to fix her tyre.

Now I had no choice but to try the floor pump and again I was surprised as after a few quick pumps it started to gain pressure. Pumped it up to 90 and everything had seated fine so it was time to put the sealant in, valve core back in and pump it up again. That done and covering everything with soapy water revealed a slight leak around the valve, possibly relating to me not having filed away all the tape from around the hole, as the only leak in the system. A bit of shaking things around with the valve at the bottom and the sealant did it's job and the leak was gone. Onto the second tyre and things weren't going as smoothly. Tiring myself out with rapid pumping couldn't get it to seal. That was until I realised to seat the tyre properly, instead of pushing it down in the middle in an attempt to force the sides out, I was actually better off pulling the tyre away from the rim to get the bead out of the well in the middle of the rim and have a chance to spread out to the hook. After doing that it was again a few quick pumps and pressure started to build, following a repeat of the first tyre right down to the small leak at the valve. The initial impression of the tyres on the rims is that they look smaller than the GP4000S in both width and height. The rubber also has a different look about it, reminding me more of a racing car slick than the slippery plastic look and lightly treaded design of the GP4000S.

The next morning I didn't have a chance to check pressure properly before heading out to work but they'd seamed to hold their pressure and the ride told me pressures where too high. I tried letting some air out to get something that felt better before riding home and found a much improved ride,much smoother than the ride in and no noticeable difference in how well they rolled or the effort to push them along. It wasn't till I rode over the lip in the driveway at home that I got any real idea that I'd possibly let out more air than maybe I should have as the tyres compressed down to the rims. Well, the no pinch flat bit works and there didn't seam to be any burping either so it appears the conversion is a success on that front. Checking the tyres I'd let them down to 40 front and 50 rear :shock: The old setup would definitely have been feeling sluggish and flexy before getting that low.

After that I pumped the tyres up to my old setting of 70/90 to get a fairer comparison between the two. At the same pressure as the GP4000S the Fusion 3 seams to roll with about the same resistance (well not enough difference for me to notice anyway). The sidewalls are notably stiffer making the tyre feel firmer in that you don't feel the same flex caused by your movement on the bike, this is particularly noticeable when climbing out of the saddle. Despite this they do an excellent job of soaking up the bumps and give a very comfortable ride. I've never really had an issue with dry weather grip of a tyre and the Fusion 3 is no exception to this rule. I've only done a little bit of wet weather riding on them and while I haven't had issues yet I haven't tested them to the level of the GP4000S to make a comparison in that department. I also don't have enough kilometres on them to make any comparisons of wear rate or cut resistance yet. I haven't really done any playing around with pressure to find out what works best but I have noted that they are holding pressure at least as well as my tubes used to and they feel fine at the 70/85 I set them to before my last ride.

So at this stage, regardless of how well the flat protection may work, I'm happy with the conversion and feel it's an improvement over the old setup.
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Re: Tubeless tyre system for road bikes

Postby jacks1071 » Wed Apr 25, 2012 11:50 pm

Crawf wrote:You can get away with allot lower pressures than that, @86kg I never go over 80psi f/r. By the end of the commuting week they are usually down to 50/60 and still feel great. I think most road tubeless users are still putting in way to much psi.


Just a word of warning on some of these really low pressures, if you hit a decent pot hole you're going to significantly increase the chances of wrecking your wheel.

If you ride somewhere with really good roads it maybe a non issue but something to keep in mind.
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Re: Tubeless tyre system for road bikes

Postby toolonglegs » Thu Apr 26, 2012 12:03 am

For the record Stans Latex mix will destroy rims over time...grrr.
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Re: Tubeless tyre system for road bikes

Postby kosh » Thu Apr 26, 2012 8:56 am

toolonglegs wrote:For the record Stans Latex mix will destroy rims over time...grrr.

There are claims online that the ammonia in Stan's sealant invalidates the Shimano warranty since it attacks the alloy. There are counter-claims that the amount involved is so small that it could not possibly cause damage.

Personally I use Caffelatex instead (ammonia-free) and it works just fine. Plus, their injector makes filling a mess-free breeze.
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Tubeless tyre system for road bikes

Postby toolonglegs » Thu Apr 26, 2012 3:18 pm

Well I can tell you that the problem is around the valve.... Maybe because it clogs up there first and then if your valve doesn't leak you probably won't touch it for a long time.
In my case it has eaten into the rim around the valve hole. Kysrium SL. Which means I have to run a rim strip on it to run it tubed. Might be a good wheel to give Tufo tubular / clinchers CX tyres a run next season.
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Re: Tubeless tyre system for road bikes

Postby hotshod » Fri Apr 27, 2012 8:05 am

toolonglegs wrote:For the record Stans Latex mix will destroy rims over time...grrr.


TLL you obviously stand by this claim you make that Stans will eat away at your rims.....

I might make 2 observations, Firstly this is more likely to happen if the aniodising has been removed or scratch from the rim revealing bare metal.
And secondly would this still be the case with the "New Improved" formula that is now available on the market, as opposed to the original sealant that was well known to eat away at rims.

I have no scientific proof of either of these claims , but think it may be the case.
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Re: Tubeless tyre system for road bikes

Postby Crawf » Fri Apr 27, 2012 8:11 am

hotshod wrote:
toolonglegs wrote:For the record Stans Latex mix will destroy rims over time...grrr.



I might make 2 observations, Firstly this is more likely to happen if the aniodising has been removed or scratch from the rim revealing bare metal.
And secondly would this still be the case with the "New Improved" formula that is now available on the market, as opposed to the original sealant that was well known to eat away at rims.


Indeed, I was under the impression Stan's sealant is NOW ammonia free.
TLL, how long ago did this happen, old batch of sealant?
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Tubeless tyre system for road bikes

Postby toolonglegs » Fri Apr 27, 2012 3:10 pm

This wheel has been tubeless for a long time so could have been set up with the old formula .... It is only around the valve hole.
Long time meaning maybe 3 or more years.
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Re: Tubeless tyre system for road bikes

Postby twizzle » Wed May 16, 2012 12:55 pm

O.K., rear at 40psi when I got to work this morning (was about 60psi when I left but I was too lazy to pump it up :roll: ), pumped it up to 100psi and it started leaking but sealed quickly when I rolled the hole to the bottom (Joe's "Elite Racers" sealant). Instead of spraying out like a fountain (as was the usual with Stan's), it just formed a couple of bubbles and stopped leaking. Mind you... it was pretty damned cold again this morning, maybe the sealant was just half frozen?

This is the first puncture using the Joe's "Elite Racers" sealant. It was supposed to be the "Road Racers", but they got the product stuffed up on CRC... and I just checked and it's STILL wrong. The Elite Racers is supposed to be for MTB but they give instructions for road wheels in the small print. If you want the Road Racers sealant from CRC, it ONLY comes in the 125ml size, the 500ml is the Elite Racers sealant

Sooo... I'll report back in a couple of days as to wether or not tubeless sealant has finally worked, but this time it's looking good.

Edit: Clarification in the first para that I'm not using Stan's any more.
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Re: Tubeless tyre system for road bikes

Postby Crawf » Wed May 16, 2012 2:00 pm

Twizzle, its formulated not to freeze even well below zero... thats what i've read anyway.
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Re: Tubeless tyre system for road bikes

Postby twizzle » Wed May 16, 2012 2:25 pm

Crawf wrote:Twizzle, its formulated not to freeze even well below zero... thats what i've read anyway.


Can't find any references to that (and their website was down when I just looked). They use glycol in the home made sealants to stop it from drying out, but I'm not sure if it's in the Joe's and how much it affects the freezing point in small quantities.

I can confirm that self adhesive patches will not work at -5C! (I found that out last year).
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Re: Tubeless tyre system for road bikes

Postby sblack » Sat May 26, 2012 11:26 am

Well, having now put over a 1000km on the Fusion 3s I feel it's now a time for a bit of an update on how I'm finding them.

Firstly I believe I had my first puncture with them yesterday. I say believe because I think it was a couple of drops of sealant I felt and noticed on my bars and later examination of the tyre shows a small cut in the sidewall of the front tyre which could be the cause. Other than that I couldn't tell I had the puncture, no noticeable loss of pressure, I just kept riding along.

The tyres have seen plenty of debris and glass and while there as some cuts they are definitely no worse than I would expect from the GP4000S they replaced. The next 1000km will tell more in that regards as it tends to be somewhere in the 1-2000km range that the cuts on the rear of the GP4000s start to become an issue and I'll reach a point where I go from rarely puncturing to it becoming a frequent occurrence and time to bin the tyre.

In terms of holding pressure I've found them to be as good as the old setup, losing somewhere around 20 psi over the course of a week. If I leave them for a few weeks without checking I've noticed that the pressures do get low enough for an occasional burp on a sharp edge like a driveway entrance. I don't really consider this an issue though as I really shouldn't be letting the pressures get that low and if it was a tubed setup I feel instead of a little burp of air I'd be getting a pinch flat and changing a tube at that time. Now I know if I notice a burp it means I've been slack and it's time to put some air in the tyres. The tyres, however, still feel fine to ride home at this too low pressure.

I have had some wet weather riding now and have noticed that out of the saddle climbing isn't as good as the GP4000S. It's only been an occasional slip and a little more weight towards the rear solves it but it's definitely happening where it wouldn't have with the GP4000S. I guess as well as this being the point when there is least weight on the rear and potentially the highest torque it's quite likely that only the hardest centre compound is in contact with the ground. Under braking and cornering the softer outer compounds should come into play and as yet I haven't had any issues there although I haven't pushed them as hard as the GP4000S yet. The only other tyre I have enough wet weather experience on to compare to are Gatorskins and I have pushed the Fusion 3s past the point where the Gatorskins would have let go on me.

So, overall, apart from having to change my climbing a little in the wet the Fusion 3s have provided a good 1000+kms of service and so far I'm still happy with the conversion. Let's see how the next 1000km go.
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Re: Tubeless tyre system for road bikes

Postby hotshod » Mon Jun 04, 2012 9:06 pm

Thought I'd post another update on my experience with the tubeless Hutch Fusion 3, after 1900ks.
Still extremely impressed with the ride quality, though it just feels normal now that this tyre can soak up the bumps and smooth out the coarse aggregate all weather roads around my area.
Wear has been very good , rear tyre has lost its original mold feather along the centre but that is the only sign of any wear and no tread damage. Front tyre still has mold feather in the centre at 1900k.
No punctures yet and , but then again I did not have a history of punctures on the local roads.
I inflate F/R to 80/90psi for my 75kg and the tyres loose about 3psi per 24hr.
I would recommend tubeless to anyone who will listen . Though I have not convinced anyone in our Saturday riding group (30-40 individuals)to give them a try. Meanwhile I'm converting all existing wheels to accept tubeless using rim sealing tape and Stan's valves.
The only proviso I have when suggesting others to give it ago is you must be able to install the Hutch F3 by hand , no levers. I say this so that I know if you are caught on the side of the road you can actually easily install a tube.( just in case).....My confidence in this system has increased to the point I no longer carry a pump, I only have a gas cartridge and tube.
The increased comfort and downhill high speed handling is enough of a reason to give these things a go. I continue to stress to others that a downhill puncture will totally wreck your ride so I consider the move to tubeless a safety initiative compared to regular clinchers.

Still keen to hear what others think of tubeless in general...

Cheers
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Re: Tubeless tyre system for road bikes

Postby twizzle » Tue Jun 05, 2012 8:28 am

twizzle wrote:O.K., rear at 40psi when I got to work this morning...


Well, after a few rides (the final one being 100km) all of the sealant disappeared forcing me to pull the tyre and patch it. Followed by the incredible struggle to get the bloody tyre to seal up again. Compressor definitely doesn't work, only a CO2 cart - and it has to be a fresh one and you need to open the valve quickly.

When cleaning up the tyre to fit it back on, the latex strings from the bead area made an impressive ball, so I decided that after riding for a couple of weeks I should add some sealant as a lot was being 'used' in sealing the beads. Big mistake. Apart from latex dribbling out the beads everywhere I got to watch little jets of CO2 vapour escaping all around the rim and I ended up using 3 Co2 carts to get it back on - first one wasn't 100% full, second I didn't open the valve quickly enough. In the end, I'm not even sure I managed to add selant, given how much leaked out while trying to get the tyre to seal up again.

When the tyres are new, the beads want to push up again the rim... but once the tyre has been used, the un-inflated shape completely changes and the beads don't push against the rim anymore.
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