To go tubeless.?

Go Tubeless or Stay Tubed

  • Tubeless

    Votes: 39 86.7%
  • Stay Tubed

    Votes: 6 13.3%

  • Total voters
    45
  • Poll closed .

j3ayy

Well-known member
Oct 10, 2020
279
504
North Yorkshire
I have spoken to the LBS & yes the Rail 9 comes Tubeless ready (no inner tube) & you get the Botranger sealant but i have instructed them to use the Muc-off stuff instead ?
 

pmcdonald

Member
Oct 22, 2021
43
24
NSW, Australia
Hope people don't mind me piggybacking on this thread.. doing some research while waiting the wait.

The bike I'm waiting on comes with Kenda Regolith tyres that AREN'T tubeless compatible - weird spec move from Merida but whatevs. As I see it I've got two options:

1) Buy some Tannus Armours and keep running tubes. That'll be ~AU$120. Swap to better tyres down the track but keep the inserts.
2) Ditch the Kendras, buy some proper serious tyres and get the shop to convert it to tubeless (I haven't done it before and don't own a compressor). That's going to come to around AU$250.

Riding is about 5km of good quality sealed road and pathway to the trailheads. The trails are that standard dry, scrabbly mix of loose dirt, sandstone and conglomerate rock and tree roots that typifies the east coast of Australia.

The wild card is I'll sometimes ride the bike to work to do a few nearby tracks in my lunch break. That route is a mix of the worst of urban commuting: broken glass, sticks, road debris, even construction site rubbish like screws and nails. My commuter was kitted with tubes, Marathon Plus and Armour and didn't have an issue riding through all that. (Since moved from the Marathons to G-One R's on that bike so we'll see if the luck holds out. The R's are fantastic riding tyres but oh so much thinner than the Marathons.)

Any clear standout here? I have zero experience with tubeless but am after whichever solution provides the minimum downtime. I'm a beginner MTBer, so any ride quality difference between the two paths may well be completely lost on me.

Cheers
 

aviserated

New Member
Aug 18, 2021
67
22
Oxford GA
My Rail 5 wheels were not tubeless ready, so I taped them using Gorilla tape and removed tubes. Sealed with Stans sealant, but had very slow leak in rear. Gorilla tape is a little porous.

I have since replaced factory wheels with new 29" Spank wheels. These came factory taped tubeless ready and so far no leaks.

Taping works if done right.
 

The Hodge

Mystic Meg
Subscriber
Sep 9, 2020
3,229
5,950
North West Northumberland
My Rail 5 wheels were not tubeless ready, so I taped them using Gorilla tape and removed tubes. Sealed with Stans sealant, but had very slow leak in rear. Gorilla tape is a little porous.

I have since replaced factory wheels with new 29" Spank wheels. These came factory taped tubeless ready and so far no leaks.

Taping works if done right.
Yeah ..but wait until you take that tape off ..you are in for a bit of a mess .
Gorilla tape is not such a good idea ( not from personal experience ..but there was a thread on here a while back ) ..thats why rim specific tape is used .
 

Binhill1

๐ŸŠ Tango Man ๐ŸŠ
Mar 7, 2019
1,612
1,843
Scotland
Hopefully picking my Rail 9 up in the next week or so.? (After along wait ?)
In your opinion is it worth going tubeless or sticking with tubes? After 4 punctures last year due to farmers hedge cutting thorns it was becoming a pain.
I had nightmare of a trip once with them couldn't get tire off had to get help. Finished up had to go back down in gondala with bike no ride. Tried to set them up 5 years later ( 2 months ago )ok till morning then flat . Not for me probably 4 punctures a year so no big deal i can live with that , cycle mostly on my own so nobody kept waiting. Put slime in the other week when i put a new tire on so see how that fares. Cycled home miles on flat tire more than once never damaged anything in my younger days .
 

#lazy

E*POWAH BOSS
Oct 1, 2019
1,136
1,214
Surrey
My Rail 5 wheels were not tubeless ready, so I taped them using Gorilla tape and removed tubes. Sealed with Stans sealant, but had very slow leak in rear. Gorilla tape is a little porous.

I have since replaced factory wheels with new 29" Spank wheels. These came factory taped tubeless ready and so far no leaks.

Taping works if done right.
As long as you check thereโ€™s sealant in there gorilla tape is fine , just changed my tyres , the tape was good so popped in some muc-off valves and inflated !
Ps petrol on a rag will remove any glue !
 

LevoBiker

New Member
Feb 11, 2023
12
2
NJ
I can confirm that Roval valves do install with the o-ring on the inside. The valve does not have the classic conical shape to the head, so it seemed apparent that the o-ring stays up against the flat head. But, I didn't believe this could be true. After much frustration doing the conventional o-ring on the outside and trying to get the sealant to seal around the valve, I pulled the tire off, made a mess, and put it back with the o-ring on the inside. Perfect seal. Not sure why Roval would deviate from standard.
 

Growmac

Well-known member
Subscriber
Dec 4, 2020
291
308
Wilts, UK
My Rail 9.8 came setup as tubeless stock. Pretty sure the Rail 9 will be the same.
Same here, but the stock tyres are awful, and they had been very stingy with the sealant.
Tubeless is worth it if you suffer from the sort of punctures that it solves. Personally it's worth the slight faff when not riding (top up tyre pressure once a week, more sealant every few months) for a complete lack of any flats in 2-3 years. Your mileage may vary, some on here simply don't find punctures a problem, therefore the slight faff wouldn't be worth it.
 

steve_sordy

Wedding Crasher
Nov 5, 2018
7,180
6,906
Lincolnshire, UK
Used Slime in tubes nearly two years on front , a year in back no punctures happy with that .
And (for the benefit of others), Slime does not go "off" like latex sealants. So, unless you lose some through punctures, you never need to top up. :)

PS: Sorry to be picky, but you are sure to have had some punctures, maybe even many punctures, but you have experienced no flats. A happy experience indeed. :)
 

Binhill1

๐ŸŠ Tango Man ๐ŸŠ
Mar 7, 2019
1,612
1,843
Scotland
And (for the benefit of others), Slime does not go "off" like latex sealants. So, unless you lose some through punctures, you never need to top up. :)

PS: Sorry to be picky, but you are sure to have had some punctures, maybe even many punctures, but you have experienced no flats. A happy experience indeed. :)
Can I tell if I have had any punctures would I see marks on tube ? Or inside tire. Last time I changed tires I could feel the slime still there by the feel but never inspected closely.
 
Last edited:

LevoBiker

New Member
Feb 11, 2023
12
2
NJ
Help me to understand the value of using slime over tubeless. My newly purchased Levo came with tubes front and rear at between 22-25 psi. I already got a pinch flat in the rear. I knew when and how it happened and it wasn't anything out of the ordinary. Instead of putting in a new tube I converted the rear to tubeless. My previous bike is a Trek EX8 with 2.8" tires front and rear running tubeless. I have gone thru a bunch of tubeless tires in the past 5 years without a flat and was able to run at 12-15 psi. Fantastic for crawling up rocky climbs without wheel spin. I find it very important to run low PSI for this reason.
So now that the Levo is 2.6" front and rear, I'm thinking of just leaving the front with a tube. It's been years since I carried a spare tube and don't want to start now. Will Slime allow me to run low PSI and fill all those pinch holes that will occur and will Slime cause a real mess inside the tire worse than Tire Sealant?
 

Binhill1

๐ŸŠ Tango Man ๐ŸŠ
Mar 7, 2019
1,612
1,843
Scotland
Can't help you there regarding low psi i just pump up hard and ride . I had a bad experience with tubeless and also found the setting up too much trouble. I changed to slime 2 years ago. I have changed rear tyre twice since I put in slime and used the same tube with no mess just a dribble out of valve when letting it down. My friend set mine up with tubeless years ago and he had done loads as he had a bike shop. My front tyre took him hours to seal . It's not for me .
 

steve_sordy

Wedding Crasher
Nov 5, 2018
7,180
6,906
Lincolnshire, UK
Can I tell if I have had any punctures would I see marks on tube ? Or inside tire. Last time I changed tires I could feel the slime still there by the feel but never inspected closely.
Every Slime product I have seen is fluorescent green. When left overnight, there were always "witness" marks on the tyres where a puncture had taken place. Sometimes it was a small, green dot, but mostly it was a small damp spot. Sometimes I persuaded myself that I could see a black dot at the centre of it.

When I used Slime, it never went off just ran out eventually as a function of the number of punctures I'd had and how rapidly the hole sealed. I once accumulated an average two dozen punctures in each tyre! That may be because I wasn't using proper tubeless tyres or even tubeless ready tyres. Come to think of it I can't recall seeing any marks for a while, but I am now using heavier duty tyres and TLR to boot. Also currently using Continental Revo sealant, which is a latex type. Latex behave differently to Slime (non-latex).

Edit: Just noticed this: When you say "see marks on tube" I assume you meant tyre.
 

Binhill1

๐ŸŠ Tango Man ๐ŸŠ
Mar 7, 2019
1,612
1,843
Scotland
Every Slime product I have seen is fluorescent green. When left overnight, there were always "witness" marks on the tyres where a puncture had taken place. Sometimes it was a small, green dot, but mostly it was a small damp spot. Sometimes I persuaded myself that I could see a black dot at the centre of it.

When I used Slime, it never went off just ran out eventually as a function of the number of punctures I'd had and how rapidly the hole sealed. I once accumulated an average two dozen punctures in each tyre! That may be because I wasn't using proper tubeless tyres or even tubeless ready tyres. Come to think of it I can't recall seeing any marks for a while, but I am now using heavier duty tyres and TLR to boot. Also currently using Continental Revo sealant, which is a latex type. Latex behave differently to Slime (non-latex).

Edit: Just noticed this: When you say "see marks on tube" I assume you meant tyre.
Yes I suppose u wouldn't see anything on the tube or would you ? . I had a look at two tires that were on before nothing in there to see but they've been off for a few months . I've never been bad for punctures to be honest I usually go in shed and it's flat the next day and find a needle out of the whins .
 

Streddaz

Member
Jul 7, 2022
103
148
Tasmania
I've been running tubeless with sealant for years now and I hardly ever get a flat. Used to get flats a lot (especially pinch flats) with tubes. It is a bit messy when changing tyres but once you get a method sorted it's not that bad.
Yes I suppose u wouldn't see anything on the tube or would you ? . I had a look at two tires that were on before nothing in there to see but they've been off for a few months . I've never been bad for punctures to be honest I usually go in shed and it's flat the next day and find a needle out of the whins .
Were the tyres you tried tubeless specific tyres and rims?
I've have had several different types of rims and tyres and as long as they are tubeless rated and you have a compressor or in my case a track pump with a pressure canister, you just need to pump the tyres up enough to pop the bead on evenly all the way around on both sides and then flip the wheel around to spread the sealant around the tyre and you are all good.
I know with non-tubeless tyres and or rims, getting them to seal can be pretty hit and miss.
 

Binhill1

๐ŸŠ Tango Man ๐ŸŠ
Mar 7, 2019
1,612
1,843
Scotland
I've been running tubeless with sealant for years now and I hardly ever get a flat. Used to get flats a lot (especially pinch flats) with tubes. It is a bit messy when changing tyres but once you get a method sorted it's not that bad.

Were the tyres you tried tubeless specific tyres and rims?
I've have had several different types of rims and tyres and as long as they are tubeless rated and you have a compressor or in my case a track pump with a pressure canister, you just need to pump the tyres up enough to pop the bead on evenly all the way around on both sides and then flip the wheel around to spread the sealant around the tyre and you are all good.
I know with non-tubeless tyres and or rims, getting them to seal can be pretty hit and miss.
I do know how to fit them and Yes all tubeless ready in fact
i cant think of the last time i seen a tyre that had not tubeless ready written on it . My personal mechanic has a compresser and all the gizmos , as you say it is a hit or miss . I used them till I had an epic at Anoch Mor the sealant went solid and I couldn't get the tire off it was like glue. That was enough for me . I never seen much difference using tubeless anyway. I got Hope wheels a year ago so gave it another go tyre ok for about five hours then down in the morning so i probably will never bother again. I don't have a problem with tubes and never have i maybe get two flats a year and usually are thorn slow puncturesi dont find till next day . When they first came on the go everyone used to laugh because the people that were always saying how great they were always carried two spare tubes with them I don't see why everyone is pushing the tubeless . I have never had to lower psi to get more grip . Each to their own. Enjoy the summer
 

Streddaz

Member
Jul 7, 2022
103
148
Tasmania
I do know how to fit them and Yes all tubeless ready in fact
i cant think of the last time i seen a tyre that had not tubeless ready written on it . My personal mechanic has a compresser and all the gizmos , as you say it is a hit or miss . I used them till I had an epic at Anoch Mor the sealant went solid and I couldn't get the tire off it was like glue. That was enough for me . I never seen much difference using tubeless anyway. I got Hope wheels a year ago so gave it another go tyre ok for about five hours then down in the morning so i probably will never bother again. I don't have a problem with tubes and never have i maybe get two flats a year and usually are thorn slow puncturesi dont find till next day . When they first came on the go everyone used to laugh because the people that were always saying how great they were always carried two spare tubes with them I don't see why everyone is pushing the tubeless . I have never had to lower psi to get more grip . Each to their own. Enjoy the summer
Yes, if you aren't riding anything that is causing issues with tubes there's no real reason to go tubeless. The benefits for me are that I can run lower pressures for more grip and not getting punctures. I ride a lot of rocky trails and tubes just don't handle it and with all the tell-tale wet patches on my tyres from a puncture over the years I would assume I would have had hundreds of tubes I would have had to repair or replace. I only carry a tube on a really big rides or a race but in 10 years, only needed the tube once.
If I were just doing my commuting ride to work, I would probably have no need to be tubeless.
 

steve_sordy

Wedding Crasher
Nov 5, 2018
7,180
6,906
Lincolnshire, UK
I carry two of those super thin, super light inner tubes as a just-in-case talisman. These Tubolitos weigh 30g each and are tiny, instead of two tubes (mullet bike) that are huge and heavy.
Tubolito 1.jpg
Tubolito 2.jpg
 

Binhill1

๐ŸŠ Tango Man ๐ŸŠ
Mar 7, 2019
1,612
1,843
Scotland
Yes, if you aren't riding anything that is causing issues with tubes there's no real reason to go tubeless. The benefits for me are that I can run lower pressures for more grip and not getting punctures. I ride a lot of rocky trails and tubes just don't handle it and with all the tell-tale wet patches on my tyres from a puncture over the years I would assume I would have had hundreds of tubes I would have had to repair or replace. I only carry a tube on a really big rides or a race but in 10 years, only needed the tube once.
If I were just doing my commuting ride to work, I would probably have no need to be tubeless.
I carry two of those super thin, super light inner tubes as a just-in-case talisman. These Tubolitos weigh 30g each and are tiny, instead of two tubes (mullet bike) that are huge and heavy.
View attachment 109647 View attachment 109648
I carry so much stuff a tube is no problem. Soon be flask and sandwich ๐Ÿฅช weather again. I bought a Alpkit cheap version of the jet boil wondering if I will take that. I like a hot cup of tea and thermos flasks are so hit or miss. I got a bigger backpack for Xmas ยฃ20 out of Mountain Warehouse I think it's 30ltr. This trip in the pic was a bit extreme but i only actually cycled a 25 mile round trip to climb a couple of hills and slept in a wee hut for the night.

20220810_180520.jpg 20220810_155402.jpg
 
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LevoBiker

New Member
Feb 11, 2023
12
2
NJ
I carry two of those super thin, super light inner tubes as a just-in-case talisman. These Tubolitos weigh 30g each and are tiny, instead of two tubes (mullet bike) that are huge and heavy.
View attachment 109647 View attachment 109648
Great idea. I am surprised how expensive they are. I'm not sure of the material but can a single 27.5" tube fit in the 29" like a regular tube can for our mullet bikes? If not, carrying two of them might take up almost the same space?
 

steve_sordy

Wedding Crasher
Nov 5, 2018
7,180
6,906
Lincolnshire, UK
Great idea. I am surprised how expensive they are. I'm not sure of the material but can a single 27.5" tube fit in the 29" like a regular tube can for our mullet bikes? If not, carrying two of them might take up almost the same space?
It may be unwise, but I have no idea if a 27.5" Tubolito can be used in a 29" tyre. Be aware that the material is very thin and is an emergency solution, which was all I wanted.
There is no way that two will take up almost the same space as one tube, not the tubes I was carrying anyway. Take another look at the pics and the text. The Tubolito in the pic had been partially removed from the packet it was in, so it looked twice as big.

Correction: I said the Tubolito weighed 30g. They are heavier than that at 45g for the 29er and 44 for the 27.5. They both cover 1.8" to 2.5", which is quite a range, so the 27.5" may indeed be able to cover a 29" tyre provided it is narrower then 2.5"

Tubolito 3.jpg
 

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