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Old 05-21-09, 09:45 AM   #1
Austin Rice
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Airless Tires???

Has anybody here used these airless tires? I am thinking about getting some. I am not a green activist, but I like doing my part to help out my planet. Well, I guess they are also worry free. The cool thing is that they can be custom ordered from 90 PSI to 110 PSI! Should I get the 110 PSI ones? Thanks for your opinions people!
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Old 05-21-09, 09:47 AM   #2
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how do airless tires help the planet?


leaves more air for me to breathe?
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Old 05-21-09, 09:53 AM   #3
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Well, less inner tubes being trashed, less tires being trashed, and I am guessing more air to breathe because there is less rolling resistance (so less breathing?).
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Old 05-21-09, 09:54 AM   #4
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seems to me like it would be a harsh ride.
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Old 05-21-09, 09:56 AM   #5
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How so?
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Old 05-21-09, 09:56 AM   #6
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Sounds to me like a clever way to sell a $70 tire.
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Old 05-21-09, 09:59 AM   #7
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How so?
because its filling your tires with hard rubber. I have my doubts that it would be as cushiony as air. Its certainly heavier, which increases the rotational mass of the wheels, which = more input to brake and accelerate. Although it might not be enough to really be noticeable
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Old 05-21-09, 10:00 AM   #8
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Sounds to me like a clever way to sell a $70 tire.
Price is per pair, but still, my first impression is gimm-ICK.

That said, if you want to be the canary in the cave on these, I say go for it.
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Old 05-21-09, 10:04 AM   #9
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I think I agree with Sheldon on this one:

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Airless tires
Of all the inventions that came out of the bicycle industry, probably none is as important and useful as Dr. Dunlop's pneumatic tire. Airless tires have been obsolete for over a century, but crackpot "inventors" keep trying to bring them back. They are heavy, slow and give a harsh ride. They are also likely to cause wheel damage, due to their poor cushioning ability. A pneumatic tire uses all of the air in the whole tube as a shock absorber, while foam-type "airless" tires/tubes only use the air in the immediate area of impact.
Airless tire schemes have also been used by con artists to gull unsuspecting investors.



Pop over to the commuting forum to see what they have to say about airless tires - they're slow (like pedaling through molasses), and fairly unreliable, since they can be prone to slipping off the wheel. They're also a LOT heavier.


And what does being green have to do with it? If you want to be green, get a patch kit. You can patch the same tube a dozen times before it needs replaced and, to be honest, with the exception of my double-tubular blowout last night, I haven't had a flat tire in a decade.

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Old 05-21-09, 10:13 AM   #10
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I haven't had a flat tire in a decade.

uh-oh...now you know whats coming.... hisssssss
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Old 05-21-09, 10:14 AM   #11
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Wow. I am glad I asked this here before I bought them. In the back of my mind, I still want them. Maybe when I get a job or deal enough crack, I will buy them and let you guys know how good/horrible they are.


Highlight the space below

(Just kidding about the dealing crack thing. I am 100% against drugs. I don't even take vitamins!, and you know what? I haven't been sick for about 7 years. Kinda makes you question the FDA, doesn't it?)

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Old 05-21-09, 10:29 AM   #12
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yeah the whole idea just seems kind of crazy to me.
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Old 05-21-09, 11:35 AM   #13
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Some people have to find out things the hard way...buy a pair and give us a review.
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Old 05-21-09, 11:44 AM   #14
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There should be a number of posts on them if you can find them. A few people like them. A lot of people hate them, most of whom haven't tried them. Unless you're trying to solve some specific problem (live in Tack City or something), I wouldn't bother.

These have always come accross as a too-good-to-be-true item, like all the Ronco stuff that looks great on the infomercial, but not when you try to use it.
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Old 05-21-09, 12:03 PM   #15
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Had similar tires available back in my BMX days (25yr ago). Never caught on then...doubt they will now.

I've never tried em. I think it would really suck once it's flat spotted.
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Old 05-21-09, 01:51 PM   #16
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Not a good idea...

Airless tires are filled with a foam rubber that can be engineered to imitate tire pressure ride qualities which is good. They don't go flat, which is good. However...

The airless tire does not spread the load evenly in the pneumatic chamber. A pneumatic tire(the ones with air inside) immediately spreads the impact load through the entire chamber. The airless tire does not.

And they can be really hard to install without the proper tools. My opinion, of course.
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Old 05-21-09, 02:08 PM   #17
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airless

I have one that a friend gave me. He told me it was one of his Time Trial wheels. This one is mounted on a Wolber Profil TX and has 18 bladed Hoshi spokes. The remaining holes are filled with a rubber type compound. The tire it self was made in Great Britain and was called a Green Racer 700 x20. The tire appears to be solid rubber ie: not filled with anything. It is also laced to an older dura ace hub (this is a front wheel).The whole set up is quite light, lighter than some of my tubular tires, I don't know how strong it is tho'. I haven't tried it yet either maybe this year.
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Old 05-21-09, 02:21 PM   #18
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This reminds me of way back in the middle 70's a company was selling orange urethane airless tires, with an oddball cross section, they were concave beyond about a 10mm wide tread, designed for 27" rims the company even gave us a set to try, they were fine in the dry if you did not corner aggressively, but were heavy, and in the wet... downright dangerous. That and in the heat of the day one of the mechanics was able to spin the wheel within the tire for a time until the friction caught it.

Sorry I forget the name, the company did not last long, but I bet they spent a bundle on tooling.
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Old 05-21-09, 02:57 PM   #19
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I think Id give them a try. You can get them in any tire psi you want 700-20 and up and there 30 to 40 bucks. Time trial a little more exspecive.
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Old 05-21-09, 03:32 PM   #20
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Gotta weigh a ton!
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Old 05-21-09, 03:58 PM   #21
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I used one (on a damaged rim) for running over a motherboard in this video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2bqe4l8HbRg

With exception to this specific purpose, I see no use for them.

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Old 05-21-09, 03:59 PM   #22
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Which video? I do not see one.
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Old 05-21-09, 04:16 PM   #23
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Which video? I do not see one.
Fixed. BF tried to make the YouTube link an image.

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Old 05-21-09, 07:46 PM   #24
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tire

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Gotta weigh a ton!
i can assure you it does not weigh a ton, quite the opposite. as i mentioned earlier the one i have is lighter than some of my tubulars.
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Old 05-21-09, 11:25 PM   #25
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I have used airless tires.

I used them for three years.

First, they are heavy. VERY heavy. I had 'em on a MTB, and the easily added five pounds to the bike, probably more.

Second, they are slow, and... well, a forum member above said it right: Molasses.

Third, an anecdote: I hopped a curb on this MTB in... Seventh grade, and was perplexed as to why the wheel taco'ed. I replaced it, and only recently did I realize why the pneumatic tire was so important- it cushions the impacts to the wheel- the solid tube sent all that force right through the wheel.

Sheldon Brown was definitely right.

They aren't worth it.

(And just about impossible to remove, too.)

-Nick
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