Road tubeless on non-tubeless wheels
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  1. #1
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    Road tubeless on non-tubeless wheels

    How many are riding tubeless tires on non-tubeless rims?

    I've put roughly 12,000 miles on this combo without issues. Mavic r-sys, zipp 303's, reynolds attack, and enve 3.5's are the rims that I've used this way without problems except initial setup before learning how to ensure a good seal. Obviously, I've used Stan's in all of these and sponged soapy water on the rim/bead before initial inflation.

    Have any of you experienced issues with this setup?

  2. #2
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    I Stans-converted a set of Bontrager Race-X-Lite back when Hutchinson was the only game in town.
    I had no problems and didn't have any flats but still don't see any advantages/disadvantages either way.
    In reference to the Assault on Mt Mitchell...
    Quote Originally Posted by merckx56
    The easier solution is to find a biker bar in Spartanburg the night before, go in and pick a fight. The ass-whipping you'll get will be far less painful than the one Mitchell will give you the next day!

  3. #3
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    I have set up me second pair of carbon clincher rims. Avenger 25X40 carbon clincher, not tubeless specific with stan's tape and tubeless valve stems. Between his set and the prior Chines carbon clincher 23X50's I have about 8500 miles over three years with no flats.

    Run at 85-90 psi. Will never go back to tubes. No flats.

  4. #4
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    I've been running Hutchinson Sectors (27mm) on three bikes (includes the wife's). I weight 190 and run 85 in the back and 80 in the front on mine and 75 back and 70 front on the wife's.

    We do a lot of climbing and usually go through 2 rear tires for every front.
    Quote Originally Posted by jackmen View Post
    I have set up me second pair of carbon clincher rims. Avenger 25X40 carbon clincher, not tubeless specific with stan's tape and tubeless valve stems. Between his set and the prior Chines carbon clincher 23X50's I have about 8500 miles over three years with no flats.

    Run at 85-90 psi. Will never go back to tubes. No flats.

  5. #5
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    I'm glad it's worked for you.

    I personally will only go with a designed system. Tubeless rims and tubeless tires. There's just too much of a price if your tire/rim set up goes bonkers riding a mtn or something. With mtb, there's much less of an issue as your speed is lower and the ground CAN be softer. However, things bad can happen in an mtb race. I'd seriously hate to have a road tire burp on a DH mtn turn.

    tire-blowout at tarium raceTracy2.jpg

    tire blow out 2008 Lemurian raceTracy3.jpg
    It's a fire road.............
    I'm on a road bike..........

    They have enough in common to blast down it.

  6. #6
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    I suspect that road riders likely have put several million miles on this setup. My reason for posting was to see if anyone has had a tubeless tire come off the rim while riding. I have had a standard road tire/tube do just that and it resulted in the most significant crash in my nearly 40 years of mountain and road biking. I intentionally didn't ask the question directly in hope of not stirring the normal anti-technology liberal arts folks here that see all change as vast capitalist conspiracies.

    With 25 years on clincher tube/tires, 6 years on tubulars, and about 6 years on tubeless, my experience is that nothing is less dependable and more dangerous during a flat than the standard road setup (tube/tire).

    In fairness, I have always used stan's in my tubeless tires and most of the time in tubulars.
    Quote Originally Posted by ziscwg View Post
    I'm glad it's worked for you.

    I personally will only go with a designed system. Tubeless rims and tubeless tires. There's just too much of a price if your tire/rim set up goes bonkers riding a mtn or something. With mtb, there's much less of an issue as your speed is lower and the ground CAN be softer. However, things bad can happen in an mtb race. I'd seriously hate to have a road tire burp on a DH mtn turn.

    tire-blowout at tarium raceTracy2.jpg

    tire blow out 2008 Lemurian raceTracy3.jpg

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by ziscwg View Post
    I'm glad it's worked for you.

    I personally will only go with a designed system. Tubeless rims and tubeless tires. There's just too much of a price if your tire/rim set up goes bonkers riding a mtn or something. With mtb, there's much less of an issue as your speed is lower and the ground CAN be softer. However, things bad can happen in an mtb race. I'd seriously hate to have a road tire burp on a DH mtn turn.

    [Attached pictures of MTB Endo]
    I'd opine that that rider pictured was going down hard no matter what. And the fact that it was only a pinch flat with a snakebitten tube would have made no difference for his race.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by redcon1 View Post
    I'd opine that that rider pictured was going down hard no matter what. And the fact that it was only a pinch flat with a snakebitten tube would have made no difference for his race.
    I agree that he was going OTB no matter what. I remember seeing the first couple of pics before his tire blew off. His body position was wrong for a rock garden. Plus, he had a handful of front brake. No way you are skimming the tops of the rocks in a rock garden doing that.

    That pic was shot before many manufacturers were making tubeless ready tires widely available. So, many were taking std tires and rims and making them tubeless. The results were iffy.

    This is kind of like how road tubeless is now. There are some tubeless ready tires, but the vast majority of tires for road are not tubeless ready. In contrast, a majority of the better mtb tires come tubeless ready if not full on UST
    Last edited by ziscwg; 05-07-2015 at 07:51 AM.
    It's a fire road.............
    I'm on a road bike..........

    They have enough in common to blast down it.

  9. #9
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    I think there may be a semantics issue here. The mtb community originally used standard clincher tires on standard rims with lots of Stan's. About eight years ago Hutchinson came out with the first tubeless road tire and it was paired with The Dura Ace 7800 road tubeless rim (I think it was 7800). This setup still required stan's for a good seal.

    This pretty much remains the case today. There are at least two reasons for running tubeless tires with Stan's. In additon to eliminating most overnight air loss, it provides excellent flat protection. I'm pretty well convinced that the vast majority of tubeless users still use stan's regardless of the wheel/tire combination.

    It should be pointed out that, unlike mtb standard clincher tires, the road bike standard tires pretty much won't seal well even with stan's.
    Quote Originally Posted by ziscwg View Post
    I agree that he was going OTB no matter what. I remember seeing the first couple of pics before his tire blew off. His body position was wrong for a rock garden. Plus, he had a handful of front brake. No way you are skimming the tops of the rocks in a rock garden doing that.

    That pic was shot before many manufacturers were making tubeless ready tires widely available. So, many were taking std tires and rims and making them tubeless. The results were iffy.

    This is kind of like how road tubeless is now. There are some tubeless ready tires, but the vast majority of tires for road are not tubeless ready. In contrast, a majority of the better mtb tires come tubeless ready if not full on UST

  10. #10
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    I never hear that much about road bikes going ghetto tubeless. I always thought it was because of the higherpressure compared to mountain bikes. >>

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by faulker479 View Post
    I never hear that much about road bikes going ghetto tubeless. I always thought it was because of the higherpressure compared to mountain bikes. >
    I was kind of surprised to read it also. I guess he found it to work. That inner lip is the thing that holds the tire in place in turns. Some mtb have even gone hookless on the tubeless rims. I'm not sure how that will go at higher pressure.
    It's a fire road.............
    I'm on a road bike..........

    They have enough in common to blast down it.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by ziscwg View Post
    I was kind of surprised to read it also. I guess he found it to work. That inner lip is the thing that holds the tire in place in turns. Some mtb have even gone hookless on the tubeless rims. I'm not sure how that will go at higher pressure.
    When specialized did their testing on the Roval carbon MTB, assuming they used their 2Bliss ready (Kevlar bead) tire, it blew off around 130 psi
    2010 Specialized Secteur Elite with the RBR not-approved Mavic Ksyrium Elite wheelset
    2009 Specialized Rockhopper Comp 29er upgraded to SRAM X9 with 1x10 and Stan's Arch EX rims and tubeless.
    2013 Cannondale CAADX-6 Tiagra with 9-speed SLX RD to run 11-32T cassette and Stan's Alpha 400 rims and tubeless
    and
    Some Burton snowboard setups, one with stiff ol' Camber and one with Rocker-Camber-Rocker

  13. #13
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    I've tried it on numerous "non tubeless" rims. On some it works fine, on others it's a disaster. It comes down to the fit of tubeless tire bead diameter & inner dimensions of the rim. Too loose - you'll never get it inflated even with an air compressor. Too tight is like wrestling a fat man & not maintainable road side.

    A good example are older gen BHS brand 23mm wide rims. Hutchinson tires just didn't fit tight enough & I couldn't get them inflated. Same tires on older Velocity A23's locked right on. Still using that setup

    If you really want to go all in tubeless, use rims that don't require tape (sealed rim beds) such as Kysriums, Fulcrum 2 way, Shimano tubeless etc. Paper thin tape holding back 100psi is the weak link IMHO

  14. #14
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    Never had any trouble with the Stan's rim tape on the spoke holes as long as I cleaned the rim bed first with acetone. The Enve 3.4's have been the easiest to mount and I can install the Hutchinson Sectors with my hands. The Reynolds attacks are also pretty easy.

    I've found that using a sponge with soapy water to wet the bead and the rim seat saves a lot of screwing around.

  15. #15
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    I think most of the tubeless tires are now using carbon fiber in their beads because of the higher modulus of elasticity. Most of us found that the kevlar beads originally used by Hutchinson in their older tires were much easier to mount a second time around-indicating a fair amount of stretch had occurred.
    Quote Originally Posted by tednugent View Post
    When specialized did their testing on the Roval carbon MTB, assuming they used their 2Bliss ready (Kevlar bead) tire, it blew off around 130 psi

  16. #16
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    I tried it, got the tires to hold pressure just fine. The issue was when the pressure would fall (it always did) over a couple of days of non riding the beads would let go at a certian point without enough aire to keep them in place. That was enough to make me abandon it, not dangerous just a PIA. Worked fine on my tubless ready rims.

  17. #17
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    So problems come up reinflating tires from sitting all month? Only a few road bike tires can go tubeless? How about the valve? Do they leak?

    A couple of riders exclaimed how tubeless feel just like tubulars. They're a little more responsive without the tube squishing around inside. They also absorb shocks better, can corner fast and competently, like well glued tubulars. Giving up the inner tube makes possible getting the same weight out of a larger cross section, so the ride is cushy but not slow.

    'Zat true? How difficult are they to patch on the road and air up with a hand pump? With tubes, the tire is pressed up against the rim by the tube. How does it work without the tube?

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fredrico View Post
    So problems come up reinflating tires from sitting all month? Only a few road bike tires can go tubeless? How about the valve? Do they leak?

    A couple of riders exclaimed how tubeless feel just like tubulars. They're a little more responsive without the tube squishing around inside. They also absorb shocks better, can corner fast and competently, like well glued tubulars. Giving up the inner tube makes possible getting the same weight out of a larger cross section, so the ride is cushy but not slow.

    'Zat true? How difficult are they to patch on the road and air up with a hand pump? With tubes, the tire is pressed up against the rim by the tube. How does it work without the tube?
    Air pressure pushes the sidewalk into the hook. Soapy water can help with the seating

    Sealant does the sealing and seals against small punctures.

    In a scenario where the puncture is too large.... You throw a tube in. (Been there on my cross bike with tubeless)
    2010 Specialized Secteur Elite with the RBR not-approved Mavic Ksyrium Elite wheelset
    2009 Specialized Rockhopper Comp 29er upgraded to SRAM X9 with 1x10 and Stan's Arch EX rims and tubeless.
    2013 Cannondale CAADX-6 Tiagra with 9-speed SLX RD to run 11-32T cassette and Stan's Alpha 400 rims and tubeless
    and
    Some Burton snowboard setups, one with stiff ol' Camber and one with Rocker-Camber-Rocker

  19. #19
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    Tednugent pretty much covered it.

    Do remember that air pressure is equal around the entire circumference of the rim. There is equal pressure trying to force the tire off the rim all the way around. While significant, the importance of the rim/tire bead interface is always overstated where safety is discussed unless tire pressure is extremely low (think trials bikes). I base this on the extremely low number of reported catastrophic connection failures on road tubeless tires on standard rims. I suspect that the majority of this type of failure occurs on standard tube clinchers where the installer inadvertently gets the tube pinched between the rim and the tire. This will sometimes result in a loud explosion that blows the tire off the rim and often occurs when high loads are encountered in a high speed curves. This will almost always break your helmet when it occurs (happens so fast that you have no time to react before bouncing your head off the pavement).
    Quote Originally Posted by Fredrico View Post
    So problems come up reinflating tires from sitting all month? Only a few road bike tires can go tubeless? How about the valve? Do they leak?

    A couple of riders exclaimed how tubeless feel just like tubulars. They're a little more responsive without the tube squishing around inside. They also absorb shocks better, can corner fast and competently, like well glued tubulars. Giving up the inner tube makes possible getting the same weight out of a larger cross section, so the ride is cushy but not slow.

    'Zat true? How difficult are they to patch on the road and air up with a hand pump? With tubes, the tire is pressed up against the rim by the tube. How does it work without the tube?

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by SwiftSolo View Post
    Tednugent pretty much covered it.

    Do remember that air pressure is equal around the entire circumference of the rim. There is equal pressure trying to force the tire off the rim all the way around. While significant, the importance of the rim/tire bead interface is always overstated where safety is discussed unless tire pressure is extremely low (think trials bikes). I base this on the extremely low number of reported catastrophic connection failures on road tubeless tires on standard rims. I suspect that the majority of this type of failure occurs on standard tube clinchers where the installer inadvertently gets the tube pinched between the rim and the tire. This will sometimes result in a loud explosion that blows the tire off the rim and often occurs when high loads are encountered in a high speed curves. This will almost always break your helmet when it occurs (happens so fast that you have no time to react before bouncing your head off the pavement).
    Yep, inner tubes popping out of rims are quite common. I'd guess air pressures above 45 psi would hold any tire firmly on a beaded rim. Not having the inner tube is reportedly superior in overall shock absorption and handling.

    I've lusted somewhat at going tubeless, remembering the pleasures of riding on tubular tires. Riders say they can take out the valve and get home after a flat on an inner tube.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by tednugent View Post
    When specialized did their testing on the Roval carbon MTB, assuming they used their 2Bliss ready (Kevlar bead) tire, it blew off around 130 psi
    130 is pretty good.

    If you are running near that, you are missing the entire point of tubeless.

    I'd be interested to read on that Spec test. Just loading a rim on a trainer or dynamo is not real world. It's the side load of turing that pushed the bead inward and make the tire want to blow off.
    It's a fire road.............
    I'm on a road bike..........

    They have enough in common to blast down it.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by ziscwg View Post
    130 is pretty good.

    If you are running near that, you are missing the entire point of tubeless.

    I'd be interested to read on that Spec test. Just loading a rim on a trainer or dynamo is not real world. It's the side load of turing that pushed the bead inward and make the tire want to blow off.
    that was a controlled test. of course, even with tubes, there's no way you're running anything near 100 psi on the trails.

    pretty sure their factory riders have tested the wheels on real world technical trails before they decided to go ahead and put it into production.
    2010 Specialized Secteur Elite with the RBR not-approved Mavic Ksyrium Elite wheelset
    2009 Specialized Rockhopper Comp 29er upgraded to SRAM X9 with 1x10 and Stan's Arch EX rims and tubeless.
    2013 Cannondale CAADX-6 Tiagra with 9-speed SLX RD to run 11-32T cassette and Stan's Alpha 400 rims and tubeless
    and
    Some Burton snowboard setups, one with stiff ol' Camber and one with Rocker-Camber-Rocker

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