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Tubeless road observations

Old 09-14-23, 02:11 PM
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Tubeless road observations

For those who have gone from 28-32 tires with tubes to tubeless 28-32 tires, is there any consensus on “ squishiness “ while climbing out of the saddle? I have thought about a tubeless setup to cushion my 2020 SuperSix. I currently ride 28 Veloflex Pro Tour tubulars on Campy Bora carbon rims @ 90 psi.
It is a great setup but I often long for a little less harshness.
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Old 09-14-23, 05:29 PM
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imo, 32 clincher would lend more comfort over your tubulars. 32 tubeless would give even more comfort.
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Old 09-14-23, 06:37 PM
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Originally Posted by waters60
For those who have gone from 28-32 tires with tubes to tubeless 28-32 tires, is there any consensus on “ squishiness “ while climbing out of the saddle? I have thought about a tubeless setup to cushion my 2020 SuperSix. I currently ride 28 Veloflex Pro Tour tubulars on Campy Bora carbon rims @ 90 psi.
It is a great setup but I often long for a little less harshness.
Why so hard? I’m running Vittoria Corsa Pro 26s @ 78F/80R, and they aren’t “squishy”. FWIW, I weigh 185-ish.
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Old 09-14-23, 11:13 PM
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Yeah, OP drop 10 psi and life will be good.
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Old 09-15-23, 05:18 AM
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Your pressure seems too high IMO.

No squishyness at all on my end. Lower pressure, lower rolling resistance, nicer ride.

Went from 25c tubed to 28mm TL a few years ago and I'm not going back! At 165lbs (75kg), I'm running 60PSI.

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Old 09-15-23, 05:38 AM
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Originally Posted by waters60
For those who have gone from 28-32 tires with tubes to tubeless 28-32 tires, is there any consensus on “ squishiness “ while climbing out of the saddle? I have thought about a tubeless setup to cushion my 2020 SuperSix. I currently ride 28 Veloflex Pro Tour tubulars on Campy Bora carbon rims @ 90 psi.
It is a great setup but I often long for a little less harshness.
You're going from tubular to tubeless, or tubes to tubeless?
You shouldn't have to be at 90psi now, unless your overall system weight is somewhat over 300lbs
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Old 09-15-23, 05:48 AM
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As others have said 90 psi on modern 28 mm tyres is very high. Put your details into the SRAM online pressure calculator and try the pressure it recommends. You can also use the calculator to see how pressure varies with tyre width and tubeless etc.
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Old 09-15-23, 08:35 AM
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As others have mentioned, try this:

https://silca.cc/pages/sppc-form
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Old 09-15-23, 08:58 AM
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28mm tubulars should feel pretty plush. As others have noted, try lower pressure.
Tubulars are typically more cush than tubeless, so switching from tubular to tubeless isn't going to solve this problem.
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Old 09-15-23, 09:30 AM
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For my situation, up to 32 is increasingly nice, 35 is too far. Wandering around the road, particularly when they touch an edge like a paint line. Scary at speed.

Tubeless, using the Silca recommended pressures. I tried increasing pressure but the 35mm tires never felt good.

Rim width is probably a key factor, and not mentioned in the calculator.
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Old 09-15-23, 09:43 AM
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Try the pressure calculator at zipp.com.
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Old 09-22-23, 07:16 AM
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I tried 80 rear and 75 front on my Campy Bora / Veloflex tubulars. For some reason when I tried that a couple of years ago and did not like it. This time it was fine, definitely takes the harshness out while not being too squishy when climbing out of the saddle.
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Old 09-25-23, 08:16 AM
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Originally Posted by waters60
For those who have gone from 28-32 tires with tubes to tubeless 28-32 tires, is there any consensus on “ squishiness “ while climbing out of the saddle? I have thought about a tubeless setup to cushion my 2020 SuperSix. I currently ride 28 Veloflex Pro Tour tubulars on Campy Bora carbon rims @ 90 psi.
It is a great setup but I often long for a little less harshness.
On my Aethos went to from a 19mm internal w/ TPU tubes w/ GP5000 28c to a 21mm internal and GP5000 S TR 30c ran tubeless clincher and especially at the recommended max 72 PSI there is that "squish". Now I do cheat a bit and pump them up to 80 PSI and the response of the bike is a lot better especially out of the saddle when sprinting or climbing. Point being I think it all comes down to tire pressure. If you were running hookless you are simply maxed at 72 PSI so IMO this is why I can never get behind hookless unless you are using your bike more for all-road, gravel, or especially MTB.
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Old 09-25-23, 09:58 AM
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maybe i’m insensitive (depends on who you ask &#128514 but i don’t feel any “squishiness” on either of my tubeless setups and i run them at pretty low pressures.

on my aethos i started with 26mm turbo cottons, various kinds of tubes including tubolitos, aerothans, and cheap ones, 80-85 psi. hated the frequent flats.

have since run it tubeless, 28-30mm GP5000 S TR, as low as 50psi but typically 60, and while the ride is much smoother (and no ride ending flats in almost 10k miles!) i would definitely not describe it as “squishy.”
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Old 09-25-23, 10:20 AM
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Originally Posted by mschwett
maybe i’m insensitive (depends on who you ask &#128514 but i don’t feel any “squishiness” on either of my tubeless setups and i run them at pretty low pressures.

on my aethos i started with 26mm turbo cottons, various kinds of tubes including tubolitos, aerothans, and cheap ones, 80-85 psi. hated the frequent flats.

have since run it tubeless, 28-30mm GP5000 S TR, as low as 50psi but typically 60, and while the ride is much smoother (and no ride ending flats in almost 10k miles!) i would definitely not describe it as “squishy.”
I have been running TPU (RideNow) on my other bike and for a short time on the Aethos had maybe a combined two flats over two years using GP5000 28c clinchers, plus they hold air insanely well

This is subjective especially when you factor in weight and what you are riding on but I can't imagine riding 60 PSI let alone 50 PSI on my GP5000 S TR 30c tubeless on my Aethos unless I was doing some pretty rocky gravel. I do weigh 139lbs so maybe that plays some role in it but I found even the "max" 72 PSI to be too squishy. It wasn't until I went to 80 PSI on some clinchers did I find I could null some of that squish away.

Last edited by Jrasero; 09-25-23 at 10:23 AM.
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Old 09-25-23, 10:25 AM
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Originally Posted by Jrasero
This is subjective especially when you factor in weight and what you are riding on but I can't imagine riding 60 PSI let alone 50 PSI on my GP5000 S TR 30c tubeless on my Aethos unless I was doing some pretty rocky gravel. I do weight 139lbs so maybe that plays some role in it but I found even the "max" 72 PSI to be too squishy. It wasn't until I went to 80 PSI on some clinchers did I find I could null some of that squish away.
yeah, i never ride gravel on the aethos. 185lb, so 200-205lb total load. the silca recommendation is 65psi for my use case, and 63psi for yours - surprisingly the difference in our weights doesn't seem to mean much. my max is around 1000w out of the saddle, for very short bursts, and i definitely don't feel like anything is remotely squishy! i do notice a little squish when pressures drop down to around 40psi because i haven't topped them up in a while.
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Old 09-25-23, 11:17 AM
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I've been riding 28c tubulars on my Mooney, an already cushy bike at 88/92 on good roads and about 10 psi lower on rough stuff and love it. Yes I can go another 10 psi lower but I hate the squish when I climb standing. (I pull far forward when I stand; something I've been doing forever and that works really well for me until my tires spin on gravel.)

Also, I always run a 4-5 psi differential front and rear. This was handed down as "what you did" by the club vets. 50 years later I still do and never regret it. (Yes, some of the theorists will point out that means a harder tire in front with the typical weight distribution of a seated rider but it also means you have enough air to not pinch flat when you drop the front wheel into that pothole you couldn't see as you panic braked behind a rapidly slowing car or rider. So might have saved me an unpleasant crash or two.

Just finished riding Cycle Oregon on tubulars on a classic early '80s race bike. 23c in back (24c is the limit without rubbing) and 25c front where there's a little more space. Ran 98/110. Perfect. Not cushy but then, that bike is pure race. I felt everything I rode over but the bike is so dialed in that it just felt as it should. Only tire issue was trying to switch lanes on a 17% down with deep gravel sections in my tire track. Well, that 23c wasn't up to crossing the even deeper center section and sank in. I went down gently. (Had I known in advance, I would have chosen a different bike or walked that 50 yards. Probably walked. But when I go there, it was too steep to stop.) I expected to take a bit of a beating from the small 110 psi rear tire and hard Specialized seat but I never noticed any issues, either impact or taint all week.

Oh, those wheels are "classic" 32 spoke 3X GP4 rims with very light DT/Sapim spokes. (I'd have to look to see which maker and I really don't care.) And yes, I was informed yesterday by on of the forums "experts" that wheel stiffness cannot be felt by the rider and my comfort is all in my head. So don't pay attention to anything I just posted.
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Old 10-03-23, 09:28 PM
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At 175, I run 55F/60R. I used to be the high-pressure guy too. Anyway, I really don't feel any squishiness that is a problem. My rims are 25mm wide.
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Old 10-04-23, 06:43 AM
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I'd say the reduced pressure is beneficial out of the saddle. I'm about 177 lbs (200ish total) and a former 110/100 23c tubed guy - from when we thought that meant lower rolling resistance. I went tubeless on the mtb circa 2008; on the road circa 2017? Currently 28s at 75psi and loving it.

I never felt any squish climbing out of the saddle, diving into turns etc. But now that you bring it up, I'm remembering how, when I'd sprint - like full gas, trying to rip the bars out of the stem kinda sprint, I had an issue with the back tire dancing around a little. Those were 1,100 - 1,300w (3s max) sprints that clearly were devoid great (okay, any) technique. But, I do think the move to 28s and 75psi has mitigated my bad technique. The tire doesn't do that same little side to side hop and skip. Oh sure, maybe I'm not making the same power these days. But let's just go with the improved grip and compliance angle. ;-)
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Old 10-08-23, 03:38 PM
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Today I converted my last road bike holdout (had tubed running 28s) into tubeless 32s. A few days ago, I had to make an unplanned and annoying detour since they had closed the main bike path back home from an auto shop. The path is maybe 35 miles but they had closed a bit chunk of it. So I went on a gravel detour for a couple of miles max but they were also doing construction so I somehow got hit by goatheads and flatted both tires. It has been years and years since I had a flat. Anyway, today I swapped the tires/valves, put 60 PSI, and went for a short ride. I mainly wanted to seat the tires properly. I climbed around 6-7 miles and stood a lot. I could not discern any squishiness. It felt very good and the descent was really nice with the grippy tires at low PSI.
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Old 10-09-23, 12:38 PM
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Just switched (temporarily) from tubeless 28mm (65PSI) to tubed 26mm (85PSI) and I don't find that my tubes 26mm are stiffer in terms of lateral move than my previous setup. In fact, it's a harsher ride and my butt does not like it. Looking forward to returning to my 28mm tubeless comfort.
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Old 10-10-23, 12:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Chandne
At 175, I run 55F/60R. I used to be the high-pressure guy too. Anyway, I really don't feel any squishiness that is a problem. My rims are 25mm wide.
In what size tire?
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Old 10-10-23, 02:32 AM
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Well, I run the 25mm GP5000S at about 100 psi, 32mm GP5000 TLR about 65-70 psi, which is about ideal for riding fast at my weight (so that's 75kg of me, 7kg of bike, 4kg of clothes, food, kit and water) on good pavement. Less pernickety about airing up the 32s regularly because they hold air better, and if planning to go offroad it's no more than 60 on those, often a bit less.

Both are "all day long" comfortable (fit is probably the biggest deal there) and fast, no squishiness. There's some squishiness if I forget to air the 32s for a while, which I find mildly annoying.
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Old 10-10-23, 05:57 AM
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Originally Posted by Leisesturm
In what size tire?
30s that measure 32
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Old 10-10-23, 12:16 PM
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... ... so there's a lot I don't know about tubeless, but ... is it really so that you can flout the laws of nature and run 25mm tires at 65psi, or is it that you HAVE to run 25mm tires at 65psi, because with the first puncture, all your precioussss Stan's fluid is going to come squirting out of the breach at 100psi. Or even 80psi!! Comfort? Comfort?? On a balls to the wall, full carbon, race replica roadbike? Comfort??? WTAF!!

I happened to be at the LBS. One of those formerly local shops that Trek now owns. They've installed a new head manager and we were chatting while my (Trek) tandem was being worked on. I was curious, so I asked what kind of tubeless setup he runs, figuring he has access to pretty much anything he wants, whether Trek approved or not. To my surprise he said, "I don't run tubeless because I'm a roadie. Tubeless is an MTB thing". I actually pushed back, and he conceded that he has tried tubeless on gravel with a 38mm tire but he feels that below 38mm it gets tricky and 32mm is a hard limit for tubeless, regardless of where you want to ride.

That's a pro's take, just saying. One pro's take anyway. I've stayed mostly quiet as a vocal minority here try to stuff ever larger tires into frames that never expected anything bigger than 25mm. I've seen pressures drop to HALF of what was common before Jan Heinie (damn him) or is it Rene Herse, started The Madness. But, in their defense, I never heard them actually say that tubeless was good Road practice. I can usually tell when my 25mm Bonties lose 10psi because I find myself down a gear in places where I am usually in a higher one. IDK, I don't think that is because the rolling resistance got lower! As for comfort ... well I've got bikes with 50mm clinchers (tubed) that don't get 'squishy' until 25psi, but I usually keep them at 50psi to 60psi. Like God (Schwalbe) intended.

Seriously, I think many of you are willingly suspending disbelief to enter The Club. Have at it. I mostly won't say anything. But the convo with the manager at Trek was just this past weekend so it was fresh in mind. A little perspective now and then isn't a bad thing now and then, is it?
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