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TdF going from tubular to tubeless

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TdF going from tubular to tubeless

Old 07-26-22, 07:07 AM
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TdF going from tubular to tubeless

A recent Outspoken Cyclist podcast had Dan Cavallari (formerly of VeloNews) as a guest.
One comment about changes he saw in the just-finished Tour d'France was the move by some (most?) teams to tubeless instead of tubular.
Probably makes life easier for the team mechanics. I wonder about any other pros and cons.
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Old 07-26-22, 07:21 AM
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The only Con to tubeless vs tubular that I can see is that riding a puncture is easier/safer on a tubular because the casing covers the rim whereas on a tubeless or clincher, if you flat you typically are gliding along on a slippery carbon rim. Otherwise, it seems tubeless is much better once the skin on your thumbs heal post installation.
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Old 07-26-22, 08:38 AM
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I don't want to argue what are better since I've no experience with tubular tires. However I think tubular are a dwindling market. And I also think that ASO or some other organization requires the bikes and stuff used by riders in the races to be stuff that is available and sold now or will be within the year to all.

Perhaps tubular are getting to be so low a market share that manufacturer's feel it makes sense to eliminate them from their product lines. And not so much that tubeless has any overwhelming better stats.
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Old 07-26-22, 08:50 AM
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High quality tubulars are about as fast as the best tubeless tires but they are rare, expensive, and fragile. Also, they are handmade. So, production is not easily scalable. Sometimes, the big tire companies would plaster their names on handmade tubulars made in small shops. Ducast and FMB will run $100-200 a tire. Vittoria's top of the line are probably $100-120 pre-inflation. I still have one bike that runs on tubies and for sure, the ride is sublime.
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Old 07-26-22, 10:05 AM
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Tubeless kills tubulars in both rolling resistance and aerodynamics, with added bonus of being able to seal some punctures. Being just plain faster is why they've already almost completely replaced tubulars in TTs for several years. The pro teams can now run inserts to keep tires from rolling off in case they do flat, which had been a concern for long stages.
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Old 07-28-22, 07:29 AM
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More on this from Jim Langley in today's Road Bike Rider newsletter (#1027):

"Tubeless Tires Finally Fully Accepted

"In a departure from previous years, with only a few exceptions, the teams used tubeless tires in the 2022 Tour. In the past there were concerns about their weight penalty over tubular tires (sew-ups), especially on climbing stages, and their reliability (holding air and staying on the rim).

"New tire designs have addressed the reliability issues. And more importantly for racing, itís agreed now that tubeless tires Ė especially the wider ones typically used now Ė reduce rolling resistance, saving precious energy and boosting speeds on the downs, flats and ups.

"It would be fun to know a lot more about tubeless tire use at this level, such as average tire pressures used; which sealants are preferred; what types of failures are causing flats (why didnít the sealant fix the puncture?); if the number of flats is less now; and if the pro mechanics are mounting these sometimes undersize tires by hand or prying them on with tools (I sure hope not)."

Langley also covers Majka's chain failure, disc v. rim brakes (and how discs may have saved Vingegaard), and a couple other things he noticed during this year's TdF.

https://www.roadbikerider.com/tour-de-france-bike-tech/
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Old 02-12-23, 08:39 AM
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I can't say I know the politics of manufacturers and teams as to what they use and why, but I wouldn't doubt that "accepted" could mean something more like succumbing to the pressure to use tubeless tires. "Follow the money" as that's always the mfr's incentive.

Tubular tires are just plain awesome. I only rode them awhile in the 80's, but it was sorta like a magic carpet ride. Sure they're hand made, they require real skill to make.... all qualities worthy of appreciation, not relegation to the machine so more dollars can be made. By that line of thinking, where profit is all that matters, you may as well replace every worker and rider with robots, as hey, those would be machine built, a dime a dozen, easily replaced and a high profit margin. I'm sure there are some that actually want to do this, they are so driven for more money, more power, more more. Hell, replace everyone, or cage them up and put them in a virtual reality prison. Payback is a you-know-what though.

So, then what happens after everyone is replaced ? There's always a "then what ?" Like Dr. Frankenstein you see .... the monster created to display your dirty work, so to speak, eventually fails, goes haywire, it reveals the flaws of those responsible for it's creation. Imagine being ol' Frankie ..... created in the image and likeness of one flawed Dr. Frankie and ol' Frankie now knows it. Well who wouldn't be angry about that ? So Frankie now to turns to the real monster, Dr. Frankie himself, for making such a mess of Frankie in the first place, for being blind to the fact that the doctor was trying to work out his own limitations through the using of others, namely Frankie. It was "born to fail" from the beginning. The doctor was "paid back" with his own ignorance.

There's a fire sale at Doctor Frankie's house, first come, first serve.

That's all in the realm of fable of course .... thank goodness !
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