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Tubeless Advice
 ptsbike member offline
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posted 2/7/2018
at 5:35:02 AM
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I need advise on sealing a set of tubeless wheels. I have had a set for about two months and sometimes they hold air for 24 hours, and other times they will leak down in about 2 hours. I have re-taped, tightened the valve as tight as it will go, put in sealant (lots of it), but they don't seem to want to seal.
thread edited on 2/7/2018 at 5:35:41 AM

 Zurichman member not displaying online status
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posted 2/7/2018
at 9:39:42 AM
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ptsbike I have been around the gravel bike scene for a little bit now and from what I have read some tires seal up better than others. What tires are they? There is what they call the shake test or something like that. You basically shake the tire or the sealant some and then lay the tire flat on a bucket for say 24 hrs. I have read where others have aired their tires up to say 70 or 80 lbs. psi for 24 hrs. for them to seal. The shake test worked for me on my Tamland 1 where I was able to seal the front tire (was Clement now called Donnelly) they were non tubeless tires and was lucky to get the front to seal but not the back. You say you have taped but I have read about putting extra layers of tape on by overlapping. I belong over at gravelcycling.com to get some advice. If you posted over there I bet you could get some good answers.

Good luck
Zman
post edited on 2/7/2018 at 9:43:08 AM

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posted 2/7/2018
at 9:58:45 AM
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These are Vittoria tires and are tubeless ready as are the rims. i just have a hard time understanding why they would hold air one day, but not the next. I will check out the gravel cycling site.

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posted 2/7/2018
at 10:13:21 AM
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These are Vittoria tires and are tubeless ready as are the rims. i just have a hard time understanding why they would hold air one day, but not the next. I will check out the gravel cycling site.
-- posted by ptsbike


From what I have read your tires probably never was fully sealed from day one. I bet if you pumped them up and do a water bath or soap suds on them you will see bubbles around the rim. That is what happened to my rear tire. Most suggest pumping the tires up with an air compressor in the beginning to get them to seal tight. The Schwabe G Ones is the tire that I have read is hard to seal. The tighter the tire is on the rim the easier it is to seal but then hard to remove out on the gravel if you have problems and have to put a tube in it. When they said about the Stans shake I had no clue what they were talking about but yes it did work for me on the front at least on a non tubeless tire. I would try adding extra tape first. When I had problems with my rear tire I had the same problems some days it would stay up and other days not. The days it stayed up there was probably sealant around some of those leaks.


Zman
post edited on 2/7/2018 at 10:31:55 AM

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posted 2/7/2018
at 10:28:09 AM
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You can use a dish soap mixture to check for leaks.

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posted 2/7/2018
at 12:32:31 PM
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How long since the initial setup? I had a pair that I set up last year. New Maxxis tires. The front tire setup perfect immediately. The rear (identical) tire kept deflating after a day or so. I could see pinholes in several places on the sidewalls. I added a little more Stans, reinflated, then shook it vigorously, only to find low pressure in another day or two. After about ten days of repeating this (although I did not add more Stans each time), it finally set up. That was five or six months ago and I never had another problem.
So if its only been a few days, I would recommend just reinflating and shaking every day for another week or two before you give up on it.

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posted 2/7/2018
at 12:59:40 PM
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One thing that worked for me was applying sealant on the bead of the tire when mounting them.

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posted 2/7/2018
at 1:54:22 PM
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One thing that worked for me was applying sealant on the bead of the tire when mounting them.
-- posted by KrateKraig


I thought about doing that, but didn't do it. These tires were a bear to get on. I had to put some Vaseline on them to make them slid over the rims.

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posted 2/7/2018
at 1:58:02 PM
post #8 viewed 66 times
How long since the initial setup? I had a pair that I set up last year. New Maxxis tires. The front tire setup perfect immediately. The rear (identical) tire kept deflating after a day or so. I could see pinholes in several places on the sidewalls. I added a little more Stans, reinflated, then shook it vigorously, only to find low pressure in another day or two. After about ten days of repeating this (although I did not add more Stans each time), it finally set up. That was five or six months ago and I never had another problem.
So if its only been a few days, I would recommend just reinflating and shaking every day for another week or two before you give up on it.
-- posted by Slow_Moe


It has been about a week. I did find air leaking from the valve and tightened it very tight. There should be plenty of sealant in them. After hearing that it has not been picture perfect for others, I feel like i'm on the right path anyway. The next topic will be getting the disc brakes aligned for multiple wheels.
post edited on 2/7/2018 at 2:00:05 PM

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posted 2/7/2018
at 2:08:18 PM
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How long since the initial setup? I had a pair that I set up last year. New Maxxis tires. The front tire setup perfect immediately. The rear (identical) tire kept deflating after a day or so. I could see pinholes in several places on the sidewalls. I added a little more Stans, reinflated, then shook it vigorously, only to find low pressure in another day or two. After about ten days of repeating this (although I did not add more Stans each time), it finally set up. That was five or six months ago and I never had another problem.
So if its only been a few days, I would recommend just reinflating and shaking every day for another week or two before you give up on it.
-- posted by Slow_Moe


It has been about a week. I did find air leaking from the valve and tightened it very tight. There should be plenty of sealant in them. After hearing that it has not been picture perfect for others, I feel like i'm on the right path anyway.
-- posted by ptsbike

If you're not seeing leaking sealant at the rims when you inflate, that means the hardest part (getting that tire-rim seal) is almost certainly good. It's not unusual to see leaks around the valve, which it sounds like you tightened up already. If you're seeing leakage around the spoke holes, that's indicating your tape (or rim strip, or whatever you used) isn't working. That would be bad. You'd need to pull off the tape and start over. If you're seeing leakage on the sidewalls or tire tread, that would be the best type of failure. That's what I was describing before. The Stans will eventually seal these holes.
DISCLAIMER: I've set up several bikes tubeless, but never a skinny tire bike. Fatbikes and mtn bikes and a couple of off-road touring bikes with knobby-ish 2.3" tires. If you're going tubeless on a skinny tire, I don't know if there are any peculiarities that would exist only for these bikes.
Good Luck!

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posted 2/7/2018
at 4:20:09 PM
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Slow_Moe from what I know he is setting up a gravel bike/mt bike. What you were describing as the shaking and letting set for 24 hrs. is what most gravel people call the Stans shake and I had no clue at first what they were talking about. I have heard of people having the pin holes in the sidewalls and from what I have heard/read that some tire manufactures make their tires supple or soft and then there are pin hole problems. My problem was I was trying to seal up a non tubeless tire to tubeless rim and like I said the front worked and the rear didn't. ptsbike I guess you know if these tires were hard to get on under ideal conditions at your house that they are going to be a bear to get off out in the woods if you have a flat and have to get one off to insert a tube in a flat. Good luck

On getting the disc brakes set up for multiple wheels you just have to use that 3 mm allen wrench and turn them in or out until the wheel locks up and then back it off some. You would have to do this every time you switch the wheels out from what I know

Zman
post edited on 2/7/2018 at 4:22:23 PM
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