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Oregon Tubliss experiences in the NW

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First I was thinking of using tubliss with a trials tire. I see people saying it is the way to go and some are using radial trials tires. How exactly does that work? I ran a Dunlop trials tire for about a year (with a tube) and that thing was sliced to hell by the time I took it off. There is no way it would have held air for more then one or two rides at the rate the damage built up on that tire. Are these people somehow not having the cuts I experienced or do they just plug and patch their tires a lot? I think the MT43 would be a lot better option but even it’s sidewall is light compared to most knobbies. Maybe it would be reliable, don’t know?

Then I was thinking maybe just run a knobbie with tubeless. At 4psi I bet a M5B would go great everywhere. The advantage seems to be that it would be a lot less likely to puncture the sidewall. And if it did happen the tubliss inner high pressure tube would keep the tire on and I could probably just fix it later at home. Worst case scenario and the inner tube fails and it would still be no worse than a flat with a tube. And with a knobbie I could still ride out completely flat if I had to. Maybe this is a bad assumption as I am not sure the tubliss rim lock would keep the tire from spinning with no air.

But I am even a little leery of a knobbie. The reason being is that when I read some of the post where people are going on about how wonderful and flawless their tubliss setup is they sometimes mention things like “my front tire is holding 4 plugs just fine and the rear had 3”. Reading between the lines this means they have had multiple failures for the life of the tire. This is not confidence inspiring as I can usually count on wearing out several tires for each pinched tube. But I am not sure if this is typical of NW riders as we might have less pointy things going into our tires.

So basically what I am interested in is the experiences of tubeless users in the NW, particularly those who ride the TSF and similar conditions regularly. Like how long have you used the product, with what tires and air pressure, and how many failures have you had and what type?

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I used a TUbliss/Pirelli MT-43 rear Trials tire off & on for a couple of years, and abosoutely loved it (on my KTM 300). I have no experience with any other trials tires, but used several knobbies with the setup, and liked it again.

I ran the Spark Plug Enduro on that bike & trials tire combo, and Hood River trails, McCubbin's Gulch's trails, and more places than I can recall. At the Spark Plug, I ran around 6-8 lbs. of pressure. Sorry I can't recall the exact amount. I just know that it worked really well. You can run less pressure, but I guess I was a little scared of running into a :Rock Garden", and having more troubles than I cared to have....

I also found out that the right knobby with 6-8 lb.s of pressure works really good in the kind of greasy clay mud that packs up a trials tire, when using a TUbliss.

I'm not a big fan of the trials tire on gravel roads, or some of the mud I once got into at Hood River. A knobby worked better (for me) in those situations. But in the right kind of snotty, slimy, root & rock infested sorta trails like you'd have at the TSF, or the dirt at Tahuya, the TUbliss/Pirelli MT-43 worked great for me.

I never had a problem with the red bicycle tire/little inner tube getting punctured, other than by ME while doing a tire change :lol: I really liked the minimal stuff I carried to repair flats: A small bottle of Slime, and one of those quad tire plug/repair kits with the little co2 bottles & valve fitting.....

Jimmie

Edited by Diesel Goober
wanted to add a point or two....

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I have had the tubliss system front and rear for about a year and a half running knobbies. I had no flats for the first year (running tubes I would get about 2-4 flats a year on average). Over the past 6 months I have gotten 3 flats (2 front, 1 rear) and one time the inner tube was not inflated enough and I lost the seal on the bead causing my tire to go flat. I was really impressed with the system for the first year, but lately, not so much. You have to check (and usually pump up) the inner tubes before each ride to keep them around 110 psi. I have been using tire slime in both tires, but I don't think it helps plug holes at all. It does, however, make the holes easier to find because you can see green ooze coming out of your tire. It is nice to be able to run lower pressures without fear of a pinch flat (have not had one of those yet), and when you do get a hole in the tire you can plug it and fill it in about 5 min trailside (assuming you have a plug kit and small pump with you). Also, the rear flat I got just last weekend and didnt even notice it until my brother pointed it out to me at an intersection. Since the innertube was still fully inflated it kept the bead seated and just felt like I was running super low pressure in the rear. I origionally go these because I thought they would make getting flats a thing of the past... they didn't. But they did make fixing a flat something I could do trailside in 5 min as opposed to riding back to camp slowly on a flat and taking 30 min to fix. While not as good as not getting flats all together, it's still pretty nice.

I ride in the TSF regularly and vary pressures from about 12psi to as low as 2 psi (this was too low btw). I also ride all around Gifford Pinchot and around Mt. Adams, Winom Fraizer, East Fort Rock, Naches, Devils Backbone, and many other areas around the state. The gnarlier the better as far as advantages over regular tube setups, but I get a little uneasy when the sharp rocks come out to play.

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I've been running Tubliss on 3 wheels for several years; on two rear 803s and a front S-12, then a M-12. One advantage of the Radial tires is the belt allows a longer footprint and better pressure distribution than a bias tire, the result is better traction.

Good: I like the rim clamping, I think it reduces rim damage and it certainly keeps the tire from slipping on the rim. It also allows running low pressure for an increase in traction and flex for mud clearing.

I've had two punctures on the S12 as well as a flat from casing leaks, the Tubliss kept the tire clamped to the rim preventing " flat tire flop" making the bike ridable (the soft tire sure makes a lot of noise @ 30mph. LOL). (I don't carry tire repair stuff for day rides, just ride out.)

I also had two punctures on the S12 which I fixed with a cheap tire plug kit, no leaks.

The taller profile and soft sidewall of the rear TT reduces side deflection on sharp edge bumps and tree roots.

Bad: The S-12 is a tube tire with a stiff sidewall so I ran low pressure to improve traction and bump absorption, eventually the casing developed leaks. (Tubeless tires like the 803 and X11 have an extra rubber coating on the inside to seal the casing.) The leaks were pretty random; some of the leaks were from the bases of knobs and some between knobs (no leaks at the plugs). Injecting Slime didn't help, I then painted the inside of the casing with Slime which sealed the casing. When I switched to a M-12 I painted the inside as a preventative, so far so good.

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Did you not have any failures in the Dunlop trials tire? I woudl like to run that tire but am worried about the sidewall. When I used on with a tube it took a bunch of pressureto seal the bead. With tubeliss do you need to use a blast of air to seal it?

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With tubeliss do you need to use a blast of air to seal it?

I've had good luck with a mix of water & dishwashing soap, liberally squirted on both sides of the tire before it gets seated. I try to get some of this soapy water on the little red bicycle tire as well. Then, you give that little bicycle tube 100 lbs. of pressure, and it normally seats & seals both sides of the bead pretty easily...... This worked on any tire I ever used.....

Jimmie

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I was leary of the same concerns you mentioned so I went with tire balls instead. they are a pain to get in the tire and then get the tire mounted but after that I just forgot about them. I have used them with a dunlop trials tire until it wore out then put them in a michelin trials tire.

I put 9psi in eash ball, there are 25 little separate balls/inner tubes. If one or 2 go flat you would not be able to tell. the others just take up the space.

1 downside to tire balls is there are different sizes for a trails tire and a knobby, they are not interchangeable between the 2 different types of tires

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Never hand any problems with the tubliss inner liner, but punctured around 4 (both front and rear) tires that caused a flat. Unfortunetly these punctures happened even at a pretty high PSI so obviously I got frusterated. Also as the tire aged I had problems with certain brands sealing around the bead. I have bib mouses in currently and will probably just run UHD tubes in the future.

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Did you not have any failures in the Dunlop trials tire? I woud like to run that tire but am worried about the sidewall. When I used on with a tube it took a bunch of pressure to seal the bead. With tubliss do you need to use a blast of air to seal it?

No problems with the 803s. Some checking at the base of the lugs on one tire but others have said that is normal. No sidewall issues and no flats, just sometimes difficult to get the beads seated.

Bead sizes seems to be a little different between tube tires and tubeless tires so on some tube rims getting a tubeless tires to seat can be a problem. I do what Jimmie does but use Slime instead, just paint it on the outside of the little tire and both sides of the big tire bead. Then 120psi in the little guy and then inflate the main tire. I have one rim that is tight and I once needed 80psi to get the beads to seat properly. Sometimes the little concentric circle on the tire next to the wheel rim is not positioned evenly all round and I have to bleed the air and then fuss with tire before re inflating.

Make sure none of the tape covering the spoke nipples get too high up the sides of the center groove, it will prevent the little tire bead from moving out against the big tire bead, or get dragged under the little tire and create an air leak. More of a problem on the front because of the narrower rim.

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I have Tubliss tubes in both of my rear wheels for my 300, one with a knobby and the other with a Shinko radial.

Never had a flat with either of them.

I have run the Dunlop D803's and the Pirelli MT43 on my 250 and 300 and I have never had a flat with them.

I did get a nail in the knobby on my 250, a regular car tire repair plug kit and an air pump and I was on my way in about 10 minutes.

That plug held until I got rid of the tire.

The D803 would not hold pressure, I tried like hell to find the leak and I finally got rid of it.

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I run TUBLiss front and rear. Going on 4 years now. Have 3 friends convinced and switched.

I race off-road and trail ride. A flat in a race can be a deal breaker running tubes. Using TUBLiss, you can repair a puncture way faster and you can, if you need to, still run on the flat because of the 360 degree rim lock. WRT riding on a flat: Tubes are no match for TUBLiss.

I use both knobbies and Michellin tube-type and tubeless X-11s. I prefer the Tubeless X-11 to the tube type.

A knobby at 4psi does great when you need traction but as with any system, when you run super low pressure you can't rail the rocks without risking the welfare of your rims.

I'm not going back to tubes. I wouldn't expect you to either.

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Flying Dubyah, I'd agree with you on pretty much everything you said. :lol: Great Post!!

There are a few things about the TUbliss the OP, and others reading here, may wanna know, though. And I'll preface what I'm going to say with this: I really, really like my TUbliss setups a lot. I like Jeff Douglas' (creator of TUbliss/Nuetech owner) customer service even more, But there are NO systems for keeping air in a tire that don't have flaws, or something someone won't like about 'em..... :banghead:

My TUbliss/Michelin Starcross MS3 front tire on my YZ450 has been a problem for almost a year. It leaks quite bit of pressure in a fairly short period of time. I do trail ride & offroad ride, but it seems lately most of my ridin' buddies have been wanting to ride Old Timer's MX. So the majority of my riding is on a track (which is what Jeff D. told me he designed TUbliss for....) lately. Anyway, I can have 12-13 lbs. of pressure in my front tire before practice or prior to a moto, and before my mext moto, it'll be down to 9 lbs., or even less lately..... :cheers: I started this thread in the YZ450 forum about this deal, and got some good info in the responses.....

http://www.thumpertalk.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1028370

The odd thing is that this was never a problem when I had TUbliss on my old KTM 300, and no problemo at all the rear tire of my YZ.

I think that with TUbliss especially, you need to really keep a tire pressure gauge handy, at all times. Check your tire's pressure before each ride. This is actually something a person shoud do with tubes also, really..... My "high pressure" chambers have all been problem free for me, on both bikes I've used TUbliss. On my YZ, for some reason, my Bridgestone rear (a 404 or 403; I forget which number it is..... :smirk: ) seems to lose a pound of pressure in a month. On the old KTM, the tire pressures would drop a pound or two every couple of weeks, maybe more if I rode more..... :)

I love the minimal stuff I need to pack in offroad/trail sitiations for flat repair with the TUbliss. I love that they'll still work good with a tire that's flat. I've ridden at Hood River for for who-knows-how-many-miles once with a flat, and didn't know I had one until we were back at the truck. I love how easy a puncture is to fix. I love how they work with low pressure (Knobby tires, especially...) in the mud. Tire changes arent bad; easier than with a tube, tire balls, or mousse.

But if one part of the TUbliss system gets some little "flaw", or problem with it, it can be as frustrating as anything. I think for the guys who ride really far into the back country, in lotsa sharp pointy rocks, or ride for points in a series, or ride for a living, the mousse is probably the best setup. Except for tire changes.... For moto, for most trail rides & offroad stuff, TUbliss works really well. I recently went back to a front tube on the YZ, but hope I can get the TUbliss back on, after I figure out the TUbliss leak problem. I have a longish race coming up soon (Hangover Scrambles), and don't want to have to worry about the slow leak problem up front. I have tough enough time staying up on two wheels anyway w/o that worry, hee hee.....

Jimmie

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Good analysis neutron, i think the race situation is what would scare me the most about tubliss, but it seems to work well in the northwest. I know its further south, but just a heads up, trav(or maybe it was ktmchic) had a cactus thorn go all the way to the inner tube, fortunitly they were packing a tube and rimlock, just sayin

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That's been my biggest concern when I was in an offroad situation, TM. I always wondered about the chance of that inner chamber getting a nail or whatever through it..... Like I said above, in my conversation with Jeff Douglas, he stated he made the TUbliss for track use. Not too long of a push back to the truck if the inner chamber goes flat on ya at a track, normally....

Does anybody ever use them in Baja, or is that pretty much bib mousse domain there?

Jimmie

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Jimmie; I also had trouble with a front Michelin leaking air, I finally found the problem by using soap on the outside of the tire and found air leaking thru the casing in half a dozen places, but no air leak at my plug repair for an earlier flat.

See post #4 for my fix.

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Not good for baja jimmy

With TUbliss we have learned that tire choice is critical, ESPECIALLY with higher speeds and in tougher terrains. Most recently we have been running the Dunlop 739AT rear & in front a Dunlop 809RR with near 5 psi both ends (even lower for technical stuff with "trials tire" like traction) & have yet to get a single puncture or cut. WITH THIS set up you get a HUGE, STABLE foot print & incredible wear = EVEN FOR BAJA!!!

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We were Pretty deep in the middle of nowhere when that inner tube failed, i believe your ok as long as you still have the ability to put a tube in

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Flying-W convinced me to try Tubliss, now I will never go back.. One day on the trail with Flying-W I had MAJOR punctures in my trials tire(with Tubliss) sidewall and bead. We were able to plug BOTH holes in 8 minutes and rode home..

I didn't read the whole thread because I am lazy, but one thing I would like to point out is that changing tires with Tubliss IS EASY MAN!!! takes 5 minutes... no wrangling the stem through the little hole.. , no worry about pinching the tube... which is all good stuff because I am LAZY..

YES you MUST check the inner tube pressure EVERY time, so don't be lazy.... But like someone pointed out, you ought to check your inflation with a tube as well.. I check both. and both slowly leak after a week or so... just like a tube... ...

I am a big fan of NOT carrying an extra tube... and of the quickness to repair on the trail..

-my 2

-red

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