Originally Posted by Gunnerbob
Not on a road bike. Only on a CX bike at much lower pressures than a road bike. Perhaps it's a "trail vs road" thing for me, dunno. Maybe I'm just not used to it in a non-road setup.
Do you have any tubeless rim/tire combos in mind for road use that I could look into? I'd love to do some research about it, thanks!
Heh, I just assume everyone has read every post I've ever made because they contain such wisdom.
I went tubeless on my mountain bike something like 4 or 5 years ago, and became a true believer. Last Summer I suffered a rash of flats on the road bike, and after the success I experienced on the mountain bike, vowed to give road tubeless a shot. I was also less than impressed with the DT wheels that came with my 2013 Roubaix Expert, so figured 2 birds, 1 stone.
I'm fat and old, so couldn't really justify 1k for the D/A carbon tubeless, but found the ultegra tubeless on sale for under $500, and the schwalbe ones for $50/ea. I think the ones use the same vectran flat protection as the GP 4000S II, but are tubeless compatible, otherwise I might have stuck with the contis. FWIW, I was running GP 4-Seasons before the new set-up, and was very happy with the ride, as I have been with contis since the early or mid-90's. I also considered a pair of Mavic Ksyrium Elites, in about the same price range as the ultegras, but the ultegras being tubeless compatible cinched it for me. The Ultegra's are only slightly heavier than the Mavics, probably due to their steel freehub body, The D/A's have an alloy body, and both have standard cup/cone bearings, that while not as sexy as sealed cartridge bearings, are ridiculously easy to adjust (digital yo) and replace.
The tires were easy to mount, and the Stan's injector, and a set of Stan's removable core valves made injecting the sealant clean and painless. Schwalbe recommends using latex sealant with their tubeless tires, and I've always used it with my UST mountain wheels, so why mess with a good thing? My first ride impression was all positive. The wheels spin up nicely, and feel both lighter, and stiffer than the former DT's. Some of this could be wheel, and some tire, and since both were new to me, I don't think it would be fair to attribute the entire difference to one or the other. They also ride smooth as frog's hair, whether they're pumped up to the recommended max of 120psi, or down as low as 90psi, which is as low as I've dared to run them.
Definitely no squish, just a lighter, stiffer, smoother feel, and not a single flat all Summer! That being said, I fully expect multiple flats on my very next road ride.
Just as a qualifier; I've been a bike geek since the mid-80's, starting out on a (road only listing) Schwinn, then Cannondale, then Masi, then Merlin, then another Merlin, then a Specialized Roubaix. I've ridden mostly clinchers, but owned and rode tubulars briefly in the late 80's while working in a shop, so the cost didn't hurt as much. My first tublars were silk clements or vittorias @ $75 wholesale. When I flatted two in one week, I went back to my clinchers, and that was that. I also fooled around with latex tubes very briefly, but quickly changed back to ultralight butyl, which I've never had problems with. Not that it matters, but in my late 20's I averaged 250-300 mi/week, raced A's in USCF as a CAT4. I've also worked on and off in shops since 1986. I admit I'm a gear-whore, but I'd like to think that over the years I've developed a pretty good sense for what equipment provides a technological or performance advantage, and what is mostly marketing hype. IMO tubeless tires for road, cross, or mountain fall into the former category. I won't disclose what gadgets I think fall into the latter category, and confirm what most probably already suspect; that I am a bona fide kook.