Weighing Tubeless MTB Tires  – Before and After

Weighing Tubeless MTB Tires – Before and After


What we’re going to do today is only going
to take a couple of minutes. What I have here is a wheel off my brand new
Orange P7 RS. The vast majority of people with this bike
will be running it tubeless, but of course it ships with tubes. During storage and shipping, sealant has the
opportunity to clump, so all manufacturers to my knowledge ship tubeless ready bikes
this way. The question is, how much weight do you save
by pulling those tubes out and pouring in some sealant? Well today, we’re going to weigh this wheel,
pull out the tubes, seal it up, and weigh it again. Very simple. Set up stock with an inner tube, we’re coming
in at 2.655 Kilograms. Let’s weigh it again just in case. Time to rip these tubes out, throw in some
valve stems, and seal her up. Now of course, I could make this calculation
by weighing the tube and the sealant, but this is more fun, and probably more realistic. Weight reduction is only a secondary benefit
of tubeless. The reason I do it is because I tend to run
low tire pressure and get a lot of pinch flats. Tubeless has virtually eliminated that problem. Another harder to measure benefit of tubeless
is efficiency and ride quality. Friction between the tube and the tire creates
heat, which is energy lost. Without that extra rubber there, it just feels
better. The benefits of going tubeless are so numerous
that some riders are religiously opposed to inner tubes, but I’m not part of that crowd. If you ride casually, or run higher pressure,
I think inner tubes are less of a hassle. You can leave your bike in the shed for months
at a time and pump it right back up. If your tire is less than perfect, it’ll
still hold air. You can take it on and off with tire levers
without worrying about messing up the bead. Finally, for a beginner just learning how
to work on a bike it’s easier to set up. So to each his own. All my mountain bikes are tubeless ready. But today we’re just here to talk about
the weight savings, so let’s weigh this sucker again and check our results. 2.51 Kilograms. So that’s a weight reduction of 145 grams
per wheel. That’s 290 grams or about 10 ounces or a
little over half a pound. If you are one to count grams, then this would
be no brainer. What do you guys think? Is this more than you thought? Less? If it weren’t for flat protection do you
think going tubeless would be worth it purely on the weight savings? I want to know what you think. Thanks for riding with me today and I’ll
see you next time.

Only registered users can comment.

  1. I don't know if you ever where will do this but at the bike shop I got my bike from it was like £10 for them to put something in my tyres and I have not had a flat on nearly a year

  2. I've always read you can't seat tubeless without an air compressor. I need to replace the sealant in mine, glad to see you can do it with a floor pump.

  3. I love tubeless, but always travel with a spare tube. In the three years I've been running tubeless I've never had a flat (other than when I went a silly riding 18psi (as an experiment) on rock garden and drop repeats. Burped completely out and then rolled down(grassy)hill on the flat rear which resulted in sidewall snakebite. However, even this was solved with a Seth hack (see his vid. on adding glitter to fix big holes on tubeless tyres)).

  4. I have been running tubeless (UST) since it came out, but hell. It is just not worth it. The tires are super hard to mount on the rim and drops pressure compared to running with ordinary tires with tubes. I am not going back to tubeless that is for sure. To much hustle.

  5. Seth, you mentioned sealant clumping during shipping. What is your advice to prevent this from occurring during winter storage?

  6. Always loved the idea of tubeless, but never really had a chance to ride tubeless. I've tried my old bike, but failed. So finally after riding my 2014 Giant Trance 3 for 2 years and constantly getting pinch flats I converted the front wheel to tubeless with vinyl 3M tape and sealant + Kenda Nevegal X Pro tubeless ready tire. I could not believe I was able to inflate that tire with a mini pump on a stock wheel even without the sealant. Time will tell if this works or not, but I have high hopes. The reason for the conversion was lower pressure (grip) and no flats (harder riding). Thanks for the video, this Orange P7 RS looks really cool.

  7. I'm religiously tubeless! Given the wheel is tubeless ready. Not for weight though, that's just a bonus. Small punctures are inevitable. Given the time crunch most adults are in, it just makes sense. More reliable, better handling, and more versatile.

  8. During the video you said sealant can clump during shipping. Would I have any problems with that when I store my bike during the winter? If so are there any ways to solve that problem?

  9. I only lost 100g for both wheels together because my bike came with super light inner tubes and the rims already had tape from new, but no more thorn punctures 🙂

  10. Yep, about what I thought (weight difference). As for the benefits, I find the acceleration and ride quality of tubeless marginally better, more grip (lower psi), and less flats. I do find tubeless a bit of a pain – refilling sealant and occassionally removing excess (dried up) sealant. So, I still use tubes on my bikes that see less frequent use. However, when it comes to regular trail riding, tubeless is the way to go!

  11. Its worth for the weight savings and the no hassle fuss compared to tubes. I always use a tire lever to put tire on…not sure what seal you were talking about hurting. Tire does not seal up until the bead is set…unless you mean the rim tape. Keep Shredn !!

  12. I live in Arizona and everytime I ride, not on a road, I get a flat, just one but tired of buying tubes. Gotta shell out the money and for TR tread and sealants. Yes, I think tubeless is gonna be worth it.

  13. I ride a road bike which has been proven to actually more heavy but the tubeless tires are so much more durable I will eventually transition because of almost double lifespan for maybe 25% more cost

  14. Just bear in mind, that this isn't a comparison for tubeless vs. with tubes, as those tires are tubeless ready which are heavier. If I would be riding with tubes, I'd definitely use something lighter.

  15. I ride trails with sharp eroded rocks that can pierce gnarly holes in my tyres that sealant cannot seal if you are going too fast…and i like to run thin and light rear tyres for pedalling efficency…i run tubeless on my magic mary up front and a tube in the back

  16. 290grams is a huge weight reduction, and grams saved is probably the biggest weight reduction per $ you can get by a thousand miles.

  17. Hey Seth. I love your videos and channel. Could you tell me the name of your mtb stand and where you got it

  18. If it wasn't for the flats or the low pressure I wouldn't go tubeless… I don't really care about the extra grams and I don't feel any difference when riding it. Probably depends on the rider but I ride downhill on a 18 or 19 kilo bike so I really don't care about that weight XD. But yeah dude nice video! Short, interesting and cool!
    Keep it up!

  19. He mentioned commuting that he would use tubes. I commute on a 29" hard tail, and I'm wondering how much PSI I could run on a tubeless setup. Just bought some Maxxis ICON Tires to replace the Specialized Ground control ones on the Specialized RockHopper. Just wondering if I should convert to tubeless for commuting and light trail use.

  20. you have A LOT less rolling resistance when you switch to tubeless no matter what tire pressure you put it just feels like your bike is on steroids

  21. I really don't mind a little extra weight on my bike. I get a much better workout, but most of the time I only do about a 5mile incline ride. If I do more then that ,I try to lighten up on weight.

  22. Hi yestererday my front tire "loosened" å little from the rim, sealent stoped all the air from escaping. But I lost alot an even more when I tried continuing. I was ridin down a little drop an got alot of weight on the front tire. I had low pressure but not to low, what do you think happened?

  23. I've given tubeless some thought. Your results are far less weight loss than I would expect. Your video is excellent. I'm riding a new bike and switching tires often. It would seem that tubes are less of a hassle when swapping tires.

  24. i had a downhill bike and used the "No-Flat" tubes. i did NOT get one flat with those tubes in using that bike for over 5 years 🙂

  25. Yeah i make my own homemade tyre sealant,cheap latex caulking,mixed with hot water ,antifreeze,and some tire slime.

  26. Levers dont disturb the seals man! Maybe you've got a bad setup once. I work with tubeless everyday and always use levers specially on the super tight ones. Never had a single issue because of that.

  27. Hi Seth, I've been watching and enjoying your videos for a long time now. You're doing a GREAT job, thanks!I have a question for you, I have a DB Release with the inner tubes in. The rear is flat and I can't break the bead to get the tire off, so that I can convert it to tubeless. The tube and tire have a small puncture in it and won't hold any air. I tried tire levers, pushing and pulling on the tire and wheel, even used c-clamps the squeeze the tire together and away from the rim walls to break the bead – but no luck. Do you have any tips?

  28. I run tubes, not because I want to but because I cant afford running tubeless. I like the simplicity and ease of use of tubes and generally can run lower PSI. I have a full rigid 29r so running low PSI is pretty important and of the two years I have only gotten pinch flats 1 or 2 times. Id like to know if anyone else runs tubes and what you think.

  29. 300 grams doesn't sound like a great deal but when it resides out on the edge of the wheel the actual mass is much greater. Hold a five pound weight close to your body, then extend your arm out, the weight almost doubles. Losing 300 grams of rotational weight out on the rim IS a big deal.

  30. I live in Australia there is so many prickles over here and I always get flats so I am getting new rims and tires and going tubeless

  31. Im scared of tubeless cuz my back tire changes its color allready and i have no money to change them 😀

  32. Tubes are more reliable and less messy. Tubeless has a much better ride and is great for a bike you ride a few times a week. For a bike less ridden, the tubeless will go flat and cake up the inside of the tire.

  33. I mumped and moaned about tubeless when it came out, no idea why, just being a grouchy mofo lol

  34. On the Rockshock forks you have those stickers which look so nice. So why black ones. You can bearly see them.

  35. I‘m not a tubeless rider (yet) but I want to add something to your saying:
    It’s not only lighter, the bigger benefit comes from the fact that it has less rotational mass. That is not to underestimate. Same goes for lighter rims, it’s not just the bare weight that counts, it’s the mass at the bigger radius that makes it feel lighter to pedal.

  36. It depends on what your goal is. Want to ride and have fun? An extra half-pound probably won’t stop you from doing so. Are you trying to race? Then any gram you can shed may result in advantages in terms of time and endurance.
    For me… tubeless is the way to go. There’s nothing more frustrating than having to deal with a flat from cactus thorns, on a dusty/muddy tire, in the middle of the Texas summer – I’ve been there – and trust me… don’t want that ever again.

  37. I went tubeless and have mixed results. First problem was finding tires that would seat on my Crank Brothers Iodine wheels. After sending the wheels back to the LBS, a week later they were ready. They used Vittoria Pitstop Tnt Evo off road sealant and it seemed to work just fine. Until I got a puncture about the size of a toothpick. I added more sealant and it would not work. Found out from a friend in the states about a plugging method for tubeless bike tires like the ones they use on car tires. Got it and it took a while but sealed the leak. Great until I got another one a little smaller. I like to run around 40 psi in my tires since I only ride on pavement. Does that higher pressure force the material from "clotting" the hole shut? I do not know except my road bike with Slime in it would not seal until the pressure was around 50 psi. This is frustrating to say the least.

  38. Yeah I had to use air compressor to fill n seat tires to rims. Skinny rims n wide Bontrager xr4 2.6 tires. I used Stan's sealant… Oh and added 150 mm dropper seat post. Had to hack in a internal routed cable, nice. Love the channel

  39. All the talk about weight reduction with tubeless and this is all you get, you'd be better off not eating an extra taco before you ride and get the same weight reduction

  40. is not about total weight reduction. Is about rotational kinetic energy.
    By the other hand, the sealant does not rotate inmediatly while tire does, that's why you feel it's easier and lighter while pedaling.
    In conclusion, that is why it feels much better in many senses.

  41. Just for example , I recently did my 27.5×2.80 Tire to tubeless, both Tubes are weight 777g in total! got i must say that is alot of Rubber

  42. great video ! and i think the weight shaming has gone too far, other day someone called my ride a 'fat bike' (why i oughta…)

  43. Although my bikes are with tubes(because I’m lazy turning it into tubeless and it’s not tubeless ready) I use the hand trick when changing the tires and inner tubes(I also don’t have tire levers) both on my Trinx Xtreme-X1 and a bike shop BMX, I have no trouble putting the tire back in(except for the inner tubes)the rims.

    So, yeah

  44. Tubeless ready tires are heavier, so you have to take this into account.

  45. I like heavier wheels so that I will get stronger because it is kinda like a weights on feets. But I don't like pinch flats so I will convert my setup to Tubeless

  46. Technically it weighs less due to reduced pressure as well. People forget that air actually weighs something….

  47. I know that it's been awhile since this video was spawned.. I figured out that I cheaped the tubeless stems lots of leaking. I'm changing them out and sealing them back up. Do you carry a tube on all of your bikes? If so which one would you recommend.. Thanks

  48. way more than i thought however without the it stopping pinch flats i dont think it would be worth it

  49. It DOES feel better without that extra rubber? So let us do a test, let people ride a bike with and without tubes and ask them what they rode. I am pretty sure none will know.

  50. It DOES feel better without that extra rubber? So let us do a test, let people ride a bike with and without tubes and ask them what they rode. I am pretty sure none will know.

  51. Well over a pound of rotational mass makes a huge difference! And you can carry one of the spare tubes with you Incase the tire becomes damaged

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