Going Tubeless: What You Need To Know

New Series!

Twenty Nine Inches is starting a new series concerning tubeless tires, sealants, rims, and what you need to know to get your mountain bike set up with tubeless tires. We’ll discuss the “why” of tubeless mountain bike tires. We will also get into the different systems, sealants, and tires being used sucessfully- or not- out in the field.

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While all our examples will be using 29 inch wheels, you can use this same knowledge for other wheels as well. So, stay tuned for more “Going Tubeless: What You Need To Know” posts coming soon. After the series is complete, we will compile all the posts in one so that researching things we will be bringing your way will be easier.

No Responses to “Going Tubeless: What You Need To Know”

  1. xChokex Says:

    I’ve heard that “all” Velocity rims are tubeless-ready and there was even supposed to be a page on Stan’s NoTubes site about it, but I couldn’t find it. Is it truth, lies, or wishful thinking?

  2. Guitar Ted Says:

    xChokex: Any rim drilled for spokes by necessity would require some sort of sealing strip to become “tubeless ready”. By that definition, a Stan’s yellow strip in combination with the Velocity product would make the rim “tubeless ready”. So, in a sense any rim in combination with a Stan’s strip is “tubeless ready”.

    However; as we all know, this isn’t the case in reality. In my mind, a system must be in place, all available from the same manufacturer/brand, to be truly a “tubeless ready” system that is at once reliable, easy to use, and performs well.

    Examples would be Stan’s own rims, strips, and Crow/Raven tires, Bontrager’s TLR system, and any UST collaboration including Mavic, Fulcrum, Shimano, Hutchinson, and Geax.

    Anything else is a combination of items resulting in varying degrees of success. That is what we will ferret out in this series. 🙂

  3. Tim Says:

    Thanks for doing this!

    Although a “tubeless ready” system is easiest, many tubeless users mix and match tires, rims, and tubeless systems, until they find something that works for them.

    It would be great to have a chart showing which tires and rims are “generally regarded as suitable” for usage together, and which combos are unreliable.

    FOr example, I am about to purchase some Salsa Gordo rims. What is the recommended tubeless set-up with this rim, if any? Which tires have been most successfully used tubeless with it?

  4. D1 Says:

    I have a set of Velocity rims I converted to tubeless. I wasn’t able to make it work with just Stan’s yellow tape. I had to use their 29er plus 4 rim strip.

  5. GreenLightGo Says:

    Tim – Salsa Gordo’s are not recommended for tubeless applications. I’m a big tubeless fan, run Flows and tubeless tires (converted) on my Sultan. HOWEVER, have Gordo’s on my rigid Karate Monkey and with Salsa tubes – find that it’s been impossible (to date) to pinch flat. You can run ridiculously low pressures (21 psi front, 26 rear) for a fantastic ride with that rim. Check out GuitarTed’s posts on this rim – it may enlighten you a bit.

  6. Willie Says:

    GT-I have DT Swiss 7.1 rims (with the machined side for rim brakes). They are kind of narrow and notorious for having tires fit loosely on the rims. Can I still go tubeless? Thanks.

  7. Guitar Ted Says:

    Willie: Actually, Stan’s has a strip for DT Swiss TK 7.1 rims, if I am not mistaken. I actually did a “ghetto” conversion on those which I will detail later in a post in this series. Short answer- yes.

  8. MG Says:

    LOL… This is beautiful. I love the back story behind the short answer, because it’s a good one. That said, I’ve met very few rims I haven’t been able to “getto” convert and run tubeless with my own system, as you know Guitar Ted, very, very reliably. I don’t run a single tube in my house (and I rotate among six bikes) and only one of the rims was actually designed to run tubeless (most are actually a brand of rims that were designed expressly NOT to run tubeless, believe it or not).

    This will be a fun series and resulting conversation! Bring it on!!!


  9. Oderus Says:

    I’ve had great success with both Stan’s and Caffelatex and I find that tubeless is just a no brainer upgrade. If you can do it, you should. I can’t wait to read more.

  10. Sevo Says:

    Hey GT you still doing the Calffelatex stuff? How is that compared to stans? I’m thinking of trying it on my 69er I’m building (EDGE front, and maybe Stan’s or DT rear). Thanks.

  11. Guitar Ted Says:

    Sevo: So far, the CaffeLatex is great. I have been doing conversions on non-tubeless ready tires, using it in tubeless ready tires, and using it in inner tubes, all with excellent results so far.

    Longevity in comparison to Stan’s has yet to be determined, but sealing is superior with the CaffeLatex so far.

  12. UnitedWeRide Says:

    +1 on the Cafe Latex I am a rook to tubeless, and I set up my first combo yesterday flawlesslyon my Stans Flow rim. I mounted a 2.4 Mountain King with a tube for about 24hrs to seat the Stans tape and then pulled the tube, put the Stans valve in, mounted the tire, filled with Cafe Latex, and it worked flawlessly! the tire seated on the rim very quickly and the Cafe Latex sealed the tire AWESOMELY!!! My local shop owner here in Germany was skeptical because of past bad expierience with tubeless, but he told me that he might reconsider now once he saw how great it worked. So I am his Cafe Latex test subject. Now if I could get some tips to mount that darn TNT Saguaro, I have tried for 3 days with no luck.

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