Tubeless tyres and a track pump.

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  • Tubeless tyres and a track pump.
  • PJay
    Member

    I’m waiting for some bobbins from Chain Reaction to set my wheels up tubeless. I’ve never done this before but gather that, in the absence of a tube, I need to get air in quicker than it escapes in order to inflate the tyres and seat the beads.

    The problem is that the tyres I have are a pain to seat even with a tube and I only have a single stroke track pump; do I stand any chance with this?

    The tyres are 700×45, so not a huge volume but I suspect that I’m going to struggle!

    They’re currently on the bike with a tube and will get ridden as such before I try to set them up tubeless.

    Premier Icon sillyoldman
    Subscriber

    If they’re tricky to seat due to being a tight combo, it might work OK?

    I fitted a pair of 27.5×2.3 Maxxis Minion 3C Exo tyres to a pair of DT M1900 Wheels today with a track pump. No bead lubrication, no valve core removal required. Just a basic £30 track pump.

    jekkyl
    Member

    stop fretting and give it a go when the goods arrive. Just try and bump the tyre around with the valve at the at the bottom sorting of squashing the tyre into the rim as you pump with the other hand. Make sure you get either bead of the tyre on either side of the valve and also do up the valve ring really tight.

    oldnpastit
    Member

    Depends on the track pump, and the tyres, and probably some other factors.

    Try removing the valve core if you can – that lets air get in faster.

    If the tyres are tubeless ready, they might Just Work. I’ve had that with some of the Schwalbe ones, where they went up without any effort whatsoever.

    You can always make yourself a 9p pop-bottle compressor.

    And there’s the funky trick where you use a tyre lever to get the bead up on to the rim, which I’ve used once, and does actually work. I can’t seem to find the video of this though 🙁

    EDIT: here it is:

    PJay
    Member

    That video is handy, thanks! I’ve tended to use a spot of GT85 on the bead too in order to help it seat; will this cause issues with the sealant?

    Premier Icon sillyoldman
    Subscriber

    Better to use a water/washing up liquid mix.

    Premier Icon vincienup
    Subscriber

    Definitely remove the valve core while seating the beads. Not doing so is inviting defeat.

    Check and recheck your tape. If there’s the slightest hint of a loose edge, retape it. Make a small X to push the valve through. Failure due to leaks around the valve is common.

    Mix up some silly strong washing up liquid and water -way way way more than you’d use for pots, and liberally smear it all over the inside and out of the bead and round the rim edge.

    Mount the tyre and then have at it with the track pump. It’ll either go or it won’t. As oldnpastit suggests, there’s always the pop bottle air cylinder if the pump won’t do it by itself. Cheap own brand cola is fine, has to be fizzy or the cap and bottle won’t be pressure rated. No tape reinforcements. Drill two holes in the cap for a pair of valves hacked out of old inner tubes and nut them down. Ideally remove valve cores here too. A good length of clear hose – screen wash hose out of Halfords’ repair section works well, as does aquarium stuff. Push hose on to wheel valve and bottle, fold hose back on itself in the middle and stand on it with your heel and pump the 2l bottle to around 80-100PSI. Lift your foot and as if by magic the beads will pop unless your tape is crap. Never use a bottle that shows bruises or signs on being bashed about – these are the ones that will explode.

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    Definitely remove the valve core while seating the beads. Not doing so is inviting defeat.

    Doesn’t make a difference for me – on one pump the flow is restricted somewhere else in the pump so makes no difference; on the other it’s got one of those auto-selecting chucks so if there’s not enough resistance provided by the valve it selects the other hole and all the air comes out of that!

    philjunior
    Member

    I’ve always wondered if you can use the lighter fluid trick to seat tubeless tyres. Please find out and video it if you don’t succeed with the track pump 🙂

    Premier Icon hot_fiat
    Subscriber

    I’ve always wondered if you can use the lighter fluid trick to seat tubeless tyres.

    I’ve tried this with my wretched fat bike tyres. The whole lot basically caught alight.

    Junkyard
    Member

    everyone on here makes t sounds like its the easiest thing in the world

    When I do it its a proper pain in the arse, rarely works first time and requires more than track pump or the coke bottle trick

    Premier Icon mikewsmith
    Subscriber

    My current MTB set go up with one fine, though that is a good combo of proper tubeless stuff.
    After that an airshot does a great job of pushing the air in fast.

    oldnpastit
    Member

    It’s easy when it works.

    Beer helps when it doesn’t.

    Premier Icon scotroutes
    Subscriber

    I’ve never used anything Other than a standard track pump.

    I always set the tyre up with a tube, leave it for a while, break the bead at one side, remove tube, insert valve and pump them up.

    Premier Icon rOcKeTdOg
    Subscriber

    Seat one side first with a tube so you’ve only got one side to seat when you remove the tube. Half the battle already won

    kerley
    Member

    I’ve never used anything Other than a standard track pump

    Same. Although the non tubeless rims I used for first tubeless setup did have me sweating quite a bit. When I moved to tubeless tyres and tubeless rims it was always very easy with a track pump.

    TiRed
    Member

    Airshot makes the process painless. Worth every penny. And yes, I’ve set up plenty with just a track pump. Great when it works. Frustrating when it does not.

    whitestone
    Member

    As others have said, it’s either very easy and you wonder what the fuss is about or so frustrating that you end up having a 2hr gym workout. Often with the very same tyre on the same rim.

    The usual problem I have is that the bead catches on the grommet on the inside of the valve so the tyre doesn’t pop out to the rim.

    Turnerfan1
    Member

    Sometimes I find seating one side with a tube doesn’t always work.
    Depends on the tyre.
    What I do is usually seat both with a tube and try with one bead seated and if doesn’t work pop both beads into centre of rim and try again.
    This usually works well after being seated for a while.
    Max

    dovebiker
    Member

    I always do mine with a track pump because if you can’t get it tow work that way then you’re $crewed if you puncture. It also does depend on the tyre bead and rim combo – a sloppy bead is more tricky and you may need to add extra layers of tape. Cold tyres don’t help – bring them inside to warm-up as they’re more flexible. Install a tube and leave the tyres mounted for a day or so – again inside – if you’re having trouble. A webbing strap around the tyre helps hold it in position – needs to be strong with a metal buckle otherwise it’ll break.

    PJay
    Member

    Thanks for the tips; it sounds like it could potentially be a bit of a trial (or trial and error at least) but ultimately worth doing.

    The effort it currently takes to get the tyres seated with a tube would make a tube puncture whilst out riding a real nightmare!

    Fingers crossed that it works out without too much hassle.

    It sounds as if a double layer of tape might be a good starting point too.

    Premier Icon Beagleboy
    Subscriber

    I’ve been running tubeless now for a year or so and haven’t looked back since I bought this,

    http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/s?q=airwave+airblast+tubeless+tyre+track+pump&cat=product

    It has a wee lever that allows you to flip between normal track pump operation or pump the air into a high pressure chamber, then release it all in one blast, easily seating the tyre. Absolutely fabulous bit of kit, and rather annoyingly now sitting at half price!!!!

    The couple of times I’ve changed tyres in the last year (using an inner tube to initially seat one side of the tyre, and a liberal dosing of fairy liquid), the tyre has gone on in seconds using this brilliant bit of kit. At £36.50, it is honestly a bargain.

    C.

    greyspoke
    Member

    >>> vincienup …”no tape reinforcements”

    I hear what you say. The tape glue might weaken the plastic. But in the event of a failure, the tape might stop small shards of plastic flying all over the place in an unsafe manner. But you should always wear eye protection when using pop bottle inflator anyway.

    Premier Icon cobrakai
    Subscriber

    Just did mine last night for the first time.

    Wheel was already mounted with inner tube. Broke the seal on one side only and removed tube.

    Put in tubeless valve and very gently tightened with pliers.

    Put a little fairy liquid in a cloth and rubbed it along the tire.

    Put tire on leaving a little gap for the sealant.

    Finished putting tire on without bothering to try and seat it!

    Cheap halfords track pump and it went up first time.

    The fairy liquid worked a treat. There snake skin magic Mary’s and the for is really tight but I was surprised how quickly it worked.

    5 min tops. Had to find another job until I finished my beer in the shed.

    richardthird
    Member

    Double layer tape only if tyre/rim combo is a bit baggy, which it sounds like it’s not. NEVER use tyre levers getting a tight one on as it will rip the tape and cause a leak. The leak will appear from the valve too, so don’t assume a leaking valve here.

    I use dish soap mixture in a 1l garden squeezy bottle which is also handy for cleaning the bike in the garage, it’s my best tool tbh.

    Apart from my Airshot that is 😉

    Best tyres I’ve come across for tubelessing are 26 CM+Smorg (Non TLR but go up a breeze), 29 Spesh Controls, and my Jumbo Jim fatties.

    shermer75
    Member

    OMG that CRC air blast is at a good price!! I’m a bit gutted too, I neded up buyimng the Bontrager version but that is less than half the price!!!

    philjunior
    Member

    I’ve never used anything Other than a standard track pump.

    I always set the tyre up with a tube, leave it for a while, break the bead at one side, remove tube, insert valve and pump them up.
    This will help.

    I’ve always wondered if you can use the lighter fluid trick to seat tubeless tyres.

    I’ve tried this with my wretched fat bike tyres. The whole lot basically caught alight.
    Video? – edit I suspect a little less lighter fluid would do the job without burning your tyre and rim. Might try it.

    Premier Icon ebennett
    Subscriber

    Main question is what’s your time worth and how likely are you to be setting anything up tubeless again in future? If you ride a lot then it’s probably worth just buying an Airshot or that pump Beagleboy posted a link to (which is a proper bargain), they’ll make your life so much easier.

    When I first went tubeless I wondered why people struggled, managed to get everything up first time with just a track pump. Then I got a particularly recalcitrant tyre (same brand, same model) and wasted a particularly frustrating afternoon trying to get the damn thing seated – none of the tricks above worked. Bought an Airshot and it went up first time.

    Premier Icon mattbee
    Subscriber

    I just use co2 to inflate & seat the bead then deflate & take valve core out to out sealant in then reinflate with pump.
    If I was doing it loads I’d probably get one of those airshot things or similar but it’s not exactly a weekly job even with 3 bikes worth of wheels set up tubeless.

    noltae
    Member

    If track pump fails then the coke bottle inflator has always worked for me – As already mentioned if it’s too difficult to seat then you are probably asking for trouble on the trail at some point – better to try a more cooperative rim tyre combo . .

    Premier Icon vincienup
    Subscriber

    @greyspoke, when I said “no tape reinforcements” I wasn’t actually thinking about glue. I was thinking more that firstly you won’t be able to see any damage to the bottle before use and secondly, even if it does work you’ll be able to exceed the bottle’s design rating any further increase the risk of explosion.

    It just isn’t necessary, if 2 litres at 80 psi won’t seat the tyre you probably have a leak that you should sort out rather than hope sealant will if you can somehow overcome the leak to seat the tyre with sheer pressure.

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