Road tubeless tires and wheels are becoming increasingly popular, but they’re still not perfect. Here are some tips to avoid the most common set-up pitfalls. But first a little recap as to what tubeless is and why you should consider it.
A tubeless system is one that, surprise, surprise, has no inner tube. In order for it to work, the bed of the rim needs to be airtight, so often that can be as simple as putting special tape around to seal it. Most, though, will have a requirement of some kind of liquid sealant that will then coat the inside of the tire, and fill all these tiny little holes, make it airtight. As an added bonus, that sealant will also seal most punctures as you’re riding along.
The most critical part of a road tubeless system is actually the interface between the bead of the tire and the wall of the rim. Both components need to be tubeless specific, in order to be safe. Which leads to the first don’t: Don’t try to make a normal road tire tubeless. It is actually really dangerous, because a tubeless specific tire will have a much stiffer bead on it that won’t stretch.
Do consider running a little bit less pressure in your tubeless tires anyway, in comparison to what you might run in your standard tubed tires, and always run sealant inside your tubeless tires. That way, you get puncture protection from sharp objects as well as pinch flats. To learn more press play to check out this useful video from our friends and the Global Cycling Network.
Do you have any other tips or tricks for running tubeless? Let us know in the comments section below.