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Fixing flats on Tubeless

Old 05-19-20, 09:17 AM
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sdowen
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Fixing flats on Tubeless

Before I make the final decision to go tubeless on my FX 3. How easy is it to fix a flat on a tubeless tire if you get a Bigger gash the liquid sealer wonít seal?

The Tubeless tire repair kits are pretty straight forward. I wonder how easy the tubeless tire would be to re-seat on rim with a portable hand or battery powered pump.
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Old 05-19-20, 09:56 AM
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I have three tiers of flat protection with my tubeless - (1) sealant, (2) DynaPlugs and (3) inner tube.

I have never used the inner tube. I've used DynaPlugs 4 times. If they didn't work I'd put the tube in to get home, with a boot if necessary. I can't imagine trying to patch a tubeless tire on the roadside. I've been able to mount my tires all but once using a good floor pump, but no way you'd be able to re-seat a tubeless with a portable hand pump, and almost certainly not a battery powered pump. You need a large amount of air delivered quickly. CO2 cartridges work.
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Old 05-19-20, 10:50 AM
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The tubeless tires on my Zipp 30 Course were a real B!TCH to get on in the first place so I couldn't imagine trying to get them off and on on the side of the road. Then you have to deal with the mess from the sealant. Finally my bike with tubeless tires is my winter - foul weather bike so I can't see in the middle of January trying to get a tube in on the side of the road.

So I stopped carrying a tube and if needed, i'll call it a day and get a ride home.
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Old 05-19-20, 10:59 AM
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One problem with inserting a tube is that it doesnít always place nice with the tire. Once I had no problem, but two other times I did. The first problem time it took me a couple of tries to get the tire seated correctly. The second time it wouldnít. The valve stem attachment caused a bubble/wobble in the front tire. There just wasnít enough room for it. Fortunately I was only about 6 flat miles from my car, so I rode back slowly.
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Old 05-19-20, 12:39 PM
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
One problem with inserting a tube is that it doesnít always place nice with the tire. Once I had no problem, but two other times I did. The first problem time it took me a couple of tries to get the tire seated correctly. The second time it wouldnít. The valve stem attachment caused a bubble/wobble in the front tire. There just wasnít enough room for it. Fortunately I was only about 6 flat miles from my car, so I rode back slowly.
Iíve been doing my homework. I keep hearing the same thing. It has me leaning towards going with a Tube and the Schwalbe Marathon Plus 35c for reliability.

Thereís some tough trade-offs with going tubeless. My ultimate goal is reliability on a commuter bike.
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Old 05-19-20, 12:44 PM
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Originally Posted by sdowen View Post
Iíve been doing my homework. I keep hearing the same thing. It has me leaning towards going with a Tube and the Schwalbe Marathon Plus 35c for reliability.

Thereís some tough trade-offs with going tubeless. My ultimate goal is reliability on a commuter bike.
My tires are Bontrager AWS 2 and are 32mm. I have about 5000 miles on them and not a single flat. I ride them in the rain and winter with all the sand, glass, sticks and debris on the side of the road.
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Old 05-19-20, 01:35 PM
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It depends where you ride if tubleess is worth it. In SoCal we get goathead stickers. They have ruined too many rides mixed pavement/dirt roads, for me while running tubes. With tubeless the sticker seals up no fuss no muss. I have had 3 sidewall punctures put a plug in and reinflate. I used to carry a tube for the first year when I went tubeless, never needed it.
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Old 05-19-20, 02:02 PM
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Originally Posted by GlennR View Post
My tires are Bontrager AWS 2 and are 32mm. I have about 5000 miles on them and not a single flat. I ride them in the rain and winter with all the sand, glass, sticks and debris on the side of the road.
Iíve also looked at the Bontrager H5 Hardcase. Theyíre a lot lighter than the Schwalbe Marathonís. The FX is a light and fast bike, it feels a bit wasteful to add a ton of extra tire weight to a high performance commuter bike.
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Old 05-19-20, 02:05 PM
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Originally Posted by sdowen View Post
Iíve also looked at the Bontrager H5 Hardcase. Theyíre a lot lighter than the Schwalbe Marathonís. The FX is a light and fast bike, it feels a bit wasteful to add a ton of extra tire weight to a high performance commuter bike.
Here's the bike i have them one... they handle great and have a very comfortable ride.

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Old 05-19-20, 02:31 PM
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There's nothing we can do about glass except hope to avoid it. So I don't really prepare for it. I carry 2oz of sealant in case I've slacked off and let the sealant in the tires dry out, some Dynaplugs, and a couple of CO2s. I've ditched the spare tube and the pump. If the tire is cut so bad that I can't plug it, I'd just rather make the call of shame. Limping home on a hastily-inserted tube that's trying to force a dollar bill out of a 1/2" long slash is not fun. It's nerve wracking at best, and I can do without it.

Honestly, tubeless + sealant will get you through 99% of rides. I have something like 1,550 rides recorded on Strava, and have had to insert a tube a handful of times (like five times in five years, which is why I stopped carrying them,) plug a few, and call for a ride just once. Honestly, most of the times I've been on the side of the road was my own fault, having not checked sealant levels for weeks or even months. The rest has been glass. Infernal, evil glass.
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Old 05-19-20, 03:19 PM
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Originally Posted by DrIsotope View Post
There's nothing we can do about glass except hope to avoid it. So I don't really prepare for it. I carry 2oz of sealant in case I've slacked off and let the sealant in the tires dry out, some Dynaplugs, and a couple of CO2s. I've ditched the spare tube and the pump. If the tire is cut so bad that I can't plug it, I'd just rather make the call of shame. Limping home on a hastily-inserted tube that's trying to force a dollar bill out of a 1/2" long slash is not fun. It's nerve wracking at best, and I can do without it.

Honestly, tubeless + sealant will get you through 99% of rides. I have something like 1,550 rides recorded on Strava, and have had to insert a tube a handful of times (like five times in five years, which is why I stopped carrying them,) plug a few, and call for a ride just once. Honestly, most of the times I've been on the side of the road was my own fault, having not checked sealant levels for weeks or even months. The rest has been glass. Infernal, evil glass.
The Trek FX3 comes default with the H2 hardcase which are so-so tires. I had to make a sudden stop on grass to avoid another biker who cut me off, the front wheel flipped me off my bike for a hard landing. The Bontrager H2 slid on the dry grass causing a loss of control.

The tire just isnít designed for anything but pavement.
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Old 05-19-20, 04:12 PM
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I don't think I'd go tubeless on a road bike, if only as I ride a long way from home where walking back to the car is not an option. I run tubed tires on a tubeless rim and found the trick to changing a flat is to get the bead of the tire off the raised upper portion of the rim floor and into the center channel. That's easy to do once you figure it out and once you do, a tire lever works fine. Then a replacement tube goes in just fine and I've never had issues getting a tire designed for tubes to seat.

I run tubeless on my mt. bike and gravel bike. As I sometimes run road tires on separate wheels on the gravel I have a tube, CO2, mini-pump, tools, and a tubeless tire patch kit in my seat bag I'm almost always riding the mt. or gravel bike (in gravel mode) on a trail system that's a not killer walk to the car. I only just got a tubeless tire patch kit. No way to really test it so hope it works when needed.
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Old 05-19-20, 07:01 PM
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Originally Posted by sdowen View Post
Iíve been doing my homework. I keep hearing the same thing. It has me leaning towards going with a Tube and the Schwalbe Marathon Plus 35c for reliability.

Thereís some tough trade-offs with going tubeless. My ultimate goal is reliability on a commuter bike.
The Pirelli Cincurato is the most puncture resistant tire tested by Bike Tire Rolling Resistance and reasonably fast. That might be an idea. I have ridden on Pirellis and they are awesome tires.
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Old 05-19-20, 07:06 PM
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I put around 6k miles on 700x35 Cinturato Velo TLRs, and they were fantastic. Sadly, I only bought them because some third party seller on Amazon had them ridiculously cheap. Last time I checked they're now about $65 a pop, too rich for my blood.
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Old 05-19-20, 07:18 PM
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I would ride the Pirelli Velo without hesitation but neither of my bikes will take the 25s because they size large. But the Pirelli tires along with the Panaracer Race A put most tires to shame.

I rode the Pirelli on my friends bike. Heaven.

Above, Merlin Cycles has them for 43 but I donít know about shipping.

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Old 05-19-20, 07:26 PM
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Iíve put a tube in a tubeless tire on two occasions. Other than it being a little messy, it is just like putting a tube in any other tire. I do not understand the comment about some tires not playing nice with tubes.
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Old 05-19-20, 08:12 PM
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Use Stans race sealant. Then carry DynaRacer which have 2 sizes of plugs and CO2. If that fails, Uber SUV.
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Old 05-19-20, 08:55 PM
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Originally Posted by sdowen View Post
Iíve been doing my homework. I keep hearing the same thing. It has me leaning towards going with a Tube and the Schwalbe Marathon Plus 35c for reliability.

Thereís some tough trade-offs with going tubeless. My ultimate goal is reliability on a commuter bike.
Iíve had my tubeless bike since Feb 2018, I ride it about 1/2 the time and my Roubaix the other half. So in 27 months thats about 7,000 miles on each bike. Other than inserting a DynaPlug, Iíve never had to fix a tubeless flat. Most of the time I just keep rolling and the sealant does its thing. On the Roubaix Iíve had to stop and replace a tube maybe 8 or 9 times during the same period. IME tubeless is pretty darn reliable.
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Old 05-19-20, 09:37 PM
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Originally Posted by sdowen View Post
Before I make the final decision to go tubeless on my FX 3. How easy is it to fix a flat on a tubeless tire if you get a Bigger gash the liquid sealer wonít seal?

The Tubeless tire repair kits are pretty straight forward. I wonder how easy the tubeless tire would be to re-seat on rim with a portable hand or battery powered pump.
If you're carrying a tubeless repair kit containing the "bacon" and a couple of CO2 inflators it is a cinch. But isn't the entire idea of tubeless not having to worry about flats? They are messy and while they work wonderful on most small flats it is the big one that always throws you. After two years I've gone back to tubes.
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Old 05-20-20, 05:10 AM
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Originally Posted by sdowen View Post
Before I make the final decision to go tubeless on my FX 3. How easy is it to fix a flat on a tubeless tire if you get a Bigger gash the liquid sealer wonít seal?

The Tubeless tire repair kits are pretty straight forward. I wonder how easy the tubeless tire would be to re-seat on rim with a portable hand or battery powered pump.
I have not yet encountered a flat, gash or not. I'm running Mavic USTs and they can be pumped up with a hand pump. According to a GCN video they can also be removed and re-installed on the rim without levers. As I said, I haven't had to do any of that. I carry a tube, a mini pump and levers in my saddle bag.
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Old 05-20-20, 05:18 AM
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I switched to tubeless on my road bike a few years ago and will never ever go back. After trying a couple of different brands, I now only ride Hutchinsons.
I've never used a plug but do carry a pair of tubes and some boot material with me.
FWIW, I've not had a flat in 2+ years.
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