La vie de vélo

Adventures in cycling and life

Tubeless Lessons

When I committed to tubeless a few months ago, the whole thing was a frustrating mystery. By experimenting a bit and learning a few lessons the hard way, I think I’ve almost got the hang of it…

My setup is stock Stan’s Arch Rims and I’ve successfully run Bontrager Jones ACX 29×2.2 and Stans Raven 29×2.0. Aside from some minor little problems, I like the setup. I find that its more hassle and headache to set up compared to tubes but is more puncture resistant, lighter, and rides nicer.

  • Stans will dry out! You’ve got to periodically add some juice.
  • Shake vigourously and pour upside down using the spout. This maximizes the “magic crystals” which make the sealant do its thing.
  • Get a core remover and a 2 oz injector kit. Adding juice this way is much easier than popping off the bead.
  • Getting the bead to set is the hardest part! For a first-time tire, remove the valve core, lube up the tire bead surface with soap suds and use an air compressor to blow air directly into the tire. This was the only way I could get new tires to set; a hand pump would simply not work for me. Give it some good pressure and make sure the bead is stuck. Then release the air, inject the juice, reinstall the valve core and reinflate.
  • Shake, Rattle and Roll the juice around the new tire … you will find new holes so make sure stans has a chance to find them.
  • Once mounted and ridden for a while, they air up way easier when mounting used tires.
  • If the pressure drops too low, you can burp air out of the tire or, worse, get some crud caught between the tire bead and the rim which breaks the seal and causes rapid pressure loss. I’ve had to scour dirt and bark out of the bead hook area while doing a trailside repair.
  • Bring a tube or two just in case.
  • Always bring a hand pump. A CO2 cartridge may not work as tubeless problems requires some troubleshooting – by the time you figure out where its leaking you may be out of CO2. Plus CO2 solidifies the Stans juice into weird rubber chunks which hang out in your tire.

Other than that, just follow the instructions on the website.


January 14, 2009 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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