I'm in the market for a new cross specific wheel set to use as my race setup. I was originally set on a carbon tubular setup.
However the LBS is really pushing tubeless. They have a set of Ultegra 6700 tubeless ready rims in their shop. They look pretty sweet, but that said I have some concerns.
Obviously there's the burping issue. I've done some reading and the consensus is unless you're running a cross specific rim (stans?), that trying to run a cross tire on a tubeless road rim is asking for trouble. The carbon beads on the hutchisons help the issue slightly, but you're still running the risk of burping at lower pressures (which is why I'm trying to move away from clinchers to being with, to run lower pressures.)
Second is wheel durability. The spoke count on the 6700's are pretty low. 16f/20r I believe. I'm 160lbs on race day.
I've searched around this forum and others, and most say that if the cross world was ready for tubeless, we'd see it more on the pro tour - but we don't, so that's indicative of something.
That said, I'm wondering if there are any new experiences now that the season has wrapped up (for most of us).
Your insight would be very helpful. Thanks!
I have used ultegra 6700's and Hutchinson Bulldog's or Piranah depending on the course. No issues for 3 years, never flatted out of a race and no burping although I am a spindly 150 lbs. Had to lock-tight a few of the rear spokes but has been fine since. I like going the simple route of tubeless ready tire and rim but unfortunatley rumor has it that Hutchinson has discontinued all production on their tubeless ready cx tires!
As many said the issue is the tires. I used some mud2s for a bit and they felt great but at proper race pressure they burped no matter how many rim strip/tape combos I tried. Also tried a pdx and a challenge both with the same issues.
I'm going to try out the specialized captain 2Bliss over the winter for some trail riding.
I ran a set of Stan's Alpha Disc Cross wheels all Cross Crusade with a few different tires and loved them. They have 32 spokes and are around 1500 grams. I do not think their is a better rim to run tubeless cross. I ran Clement PDX and Hutchinson Bulldogs tires just fine at 32-35 psi. The PDX are huge on the Aplha, might want to consider Michelin Muds if your frame is tight on clearance.
William how much do you weigh? I'm thinking of that exact wheel setup (with the Clements), but I'm 195-200 lbs., so I'm paranoid about the talk of flexing in the 340 rim. Otherwise it seems perfect for me.
I am 170 lbs... the alphas work great. I ride the alphas tubeless on road, rocks, paths, cobbles with slicks and knobs. I would like to have a taller rim profile for cross to cut through mud if your listening Stan, disc only as well. But the current Alphas are great. I just got a set of the Hutchinson Toros in the mail as a warranty for the old Bulldogs. They look nice, a little less knob in middle for lighter weight and faster rolling. The also seem to be a bit narrower which might be good in the mud, it also would make them more UCI legal. The old Bulldogs were to fat for the caliper police. In some ways it is a shame for the big old grey whales ruled when you found yourself riding a sketchy section of roots and rocks.
I am larger ~200lbs and I have had great luck with Stan's wheels. Originally I had a pair of carbon clinchers setup with tubeless cross tires using a Stan's conversion. While the carbon rims were nice, I couldn't get them to stop burping on remounts and hard bumpy corners without over inflating them. I switched to a pair of Stan's Alpha 340 rims with the rubber cx rimstrip about a year ago and have never had a burp. I was a bit weary at the durability of the Stan's wheels at first, but I have never had a problem. For the conveniece over tubulars, the light weight and durability I would recommend the Stan's tubless wheels, but I haven't seen any other rims that work well with the low pressures of cross racing.
Hope I'm not getting off topic here, but does anyone have a list of companies that provide either true tubeless or tubeless ready tires - ones with a UST bead? I like the ride of tubbies, but just don't want to commit to the workload, and a good quality tubeless setup seems like a reasonable compromise.
In the past, I've avoided tubeless, because, frankly, there weren't a lot of tubeless beaded tire options, and I don't want to mess around with the burping. After reading this discussion, it seems like there might be more options out there than just a few years ago... (if Clement ever comes on board for TLR, I'm sold)
While I'm asking, is there also a list somewhere for rims as well?
Here's my update from the season:
Specialized Captain 2BR = priceless
Stan's Alpha340s = not great, nipples pulled out of 2x 24h, and 1x 32h. Good for front, but all those were on the rear wheel, and one of the 24h were used mainly on the road (all built to PowerTap hubs). =(
So i'm looking for an after-market 32h rim that's tubeless compatible (for winter bike, road mainly) - any recommendations? There are tons of built wheels, but this is for my PowerTap (which i've built to a Mavic OpenPro, but even after 7 layers of tape, it's a LOT of work to get inflated even with an air compressor) - so just need a rim... Any suggestions? Weight isn't so much a concern, just something i can pump up with tubeless road tires at home with a floor pump (which is one thing the Stan's did excel at.)
Velocity A23 would be my first choice... I run the Deep V's tubeless, but they're a little narrow in my opinion... But they only took 2 layers of tape and a floor pump. No problems.
Don't give up on the 340, try a 32 hole 340 with the little nipple washers. I do not think the first 340 builds were built with them which might be the cause of the nipple pull through. The new road wheels featuring the 340 also come with twice round of the yellow tape for easier blow up with a wider assortment of tires.
Are the 340s coming with washers in the nipple holes now?
I agree they are super-easy to inflate, which is why i wanted to use them in the first place..