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  1. #1
    Knollician
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    Who has had good luck with Flow Exs?

    I hate these rims. Never before have I ever had a burp or blow off in all of my years running tubeless. In the few months I have had these, I have had 4 blow offs and today was the most severe. I was going through a corner, slightly bermed and nothing but sand. The tire blew completely off the rim...I mean completely. Both beads and the tire were completely removed from the rim. The bead was so loose that I was able to mount the tire with a tube effortlessly with only one hand.

    Thinking the issue is with the tire and not the rim, I chose to mount up a Specialized 2bliss tire. Same thing. I was able to install the tire with no effort. I understand that the bead seat is much smaller on these rims, but I believe this to be the problem. There is insufficient bead hook on these rims to hold the tires. I would expect the bead seat to be much tighter if you are not going to rely on the bead hook.

    Before I go looking to replace these rims with some WTB I25s with a UST bead hook, who has had success with these rims, and with what tires?
    "Three balls at once...who knew?" - Cotton McKnight

  2. #2
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    fwiw. I've not experienced any problems. One season only, front only and it has only had Schwalbe tires on so far. (HR2 is in the queue for next season. I'm in fatbike mode now)
    about 75% of my riding is slower technical trail so not much high speed cornering there but the other 25% has been a mix of light DH, park, higher speeds so the wheel has seen some side loading and no issues. I've actually been quite happy with it so far.

  3. #3
    Knollician
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    Quote Originally Posted by kark View Post
    fwiw. I've not experienced any problems. One season only, front only and it has only had Schwalbe tires on so far. (HR2 is in the queue for next season. I'm in fatbike mode now)
    about 75% of my riding is slower technical trail so not much high speed cornering there but the other 25% has been a mix of light DH, park, higher speeds so the wheel has seen some side loading and no issues. I've actually been quite happy with it so far.
    The Specialized 2Bliss tire I mounted up earlier is holding air exceptionally well with no sealant. This leads me to believe the bead must be seated well and is tight. Maybe I need to go back to some trusty UST tires.
    "Three balls at once...who knew?" - Cotton McKnight

  4. #4
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    Ive had flows on my 5" travel 29r for 5 yrs or so.
    no issues tearing tires off rims
    but I have never ridden as aggressive as I do on my Knollys as I get overall wheel flex when stuffing berms
    I will say I was quite happy with how they held up during my time in the SW desert

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by tiSS'er View Post
    I hate these rims. Never before have I ever had a burp or blow off in all of my years running tubeless. In the few months I have had these, I have had 4 blow offs and today was the most severe. I was going through a corner, slightly bermed and nothing but sand. The tire blew completely off the rim...I mean completely. Both beads and the tire were completely removed from the rim. The bead was so loose that I was able to mount the tire with a tube effortlessly with only one hand.

    Thinking the issue is with the tire and not the rim, I chose to mount up a Specialized 2bliss tire. Same thing. I was able to install the tire with no effort. I understand that the bead seat is much smaller on these rims, but I believe this to be the problem. There is insufficient bead hook on these rims to hold the tires. I would expect the bead seat to be much tighter if you are not going to rely on the bead hook.

    Before I go looking to replace these rims with some WTB I25s with a UST bead hook, who has had success with these rims, and with what tires?
    I have good luck with these rims and usually get a rim out of a year/season of hard riding for rear, longer up front if I don't case or stack a jump (killed a brand new front rim that was <1 week old from blowing tire off of rim by hitting double with way too much speed at bad angle from landing on side hard enough to taco rim, bend handle bars and dent body). With this said, I like these for very solid, affordable and fairly strong rims that can take a beating for their weight and doesn't kill the wallet to replace as needed. The feel like the "XT" of rims to me (for those of us who can't afford plastic rims ). BUT, they DON'T HOLD EVERY TIRE ON as advertised. I have had poor luck with any tire that isn't specifically rated as tubeless ready or UST regardless of how thick or stout the tires are. For instance, I have blown off a DHF 2.5 wire, Ardent EXO, Schwalbe Muddy Mary (all with adequate sealant and PSI). I even managed to have blown off the Ardent with a tube installed after it went off the rim with tubeless/sealant prior (that was a first). I do however have no probs at all running Spesh 2bliss tires (Butcher Controls are my go to front) and great success with Maxxis TLR bead, such as DHR II TLR. So, if you keep this in mind instead of thinking you can ran practically any tire tubeless regardless of rating like Stan's says, then you should be fine. Oh, even though UST mounts well and can almost get away running without sealant, I have torn all UST tires at the bead (Ardent UST, Spesh UST) and were unable to run tubeless again due to location of tear. Really impressed with Maxxis' new TLR bead so far.
    Ride On!

  6. #6
    formerly shabadu
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    I've been running one on the front since May with no issues. Usually using a DHF 2.5 EXO but also a 2.3 DHR2 EXO TR and a HR2 EXO for the past 4 or 5 rides.

    I just got a digi pressure gauge, but have mainly been going off of feel since my pump gauge is worthless. I think i was probably running 28-30 avg over the course of the season.

    Lots of racing and really aggro riding on the DHF with no issues at all in everything from full rocky alpine to bermy aspens to rocky desert.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by flowtron View Post
    I've been running one on the front since May with no issues. Usually using a DHF 2.5 EXO but also a 2.3 DHR2 EXO TR and a HR2 EXO for the past 4 or 5 rides.

    I just got a digi pressure gauge, but have mainly been going off of feel since my pump gauge is worthless. I think i was probably running 28-30 avg over the course of the season.

    Lots of racing and really aggro riding on the DHF with no issues at all in everything from full rocky alpine to bermy aspens to rocky desert.
    I wouldn't trust or run the non-TR Maxxis tires at all on FLOW EX. I have blown Maxxis EXO's off the front and back (more likely back and probably why you haven't blown your front yet, but all in due time especially if you are jumping). I usually run 31-33psi front, 35-37 psi rear and still managed to blow the tires off the rim. Fortunately, was never badly hurt, but did damage a nearly brand new front wheel, and damaged handlebars (Chromag OSX) and rattled my teeth hard. Like I said, with TR or UST only, the rims are solid (with SG spokes too!)
    Ride On!

  8. #8
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    OP, put another layer of tape on the rim.

  9. #9
    Knomer
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    I rode the standard Flow's for about 5 years with minimal problems. I've been on the EX version for about 6 months with no problems at all. That being said, I think you are definitely on the right track regarding how to judge proper tire/rim mating capabilities. In other words, if you can install the tire without a lever, or it mounts VERY easily with a lever, you will probably have burping issues. If you are having this issue with LOTS of different tires, then perhaps your rim diameter is out of spec? Seems unlikely that this issue would be caused by the bead hook/height, assuming the diameter of the rim is correct.

    Or perhaps your hoop isn't round? Maybe try rolling the wheel across your garage floor with no tire and see how it looks?
    Global Director of Sales: Knolly Bikes

  10. #10
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    What are you using for Rim Tape? If you use the Stan's rim tape, they recommend 25mm width for both the Arch EX and the Flow EX. Yet the internal width of the Flow is 4.5mm wider, wtf?. I gave up using their Yellow tape a while ago as I found the tires didnt really seem to fit well on the Flows with the Yellow tape. I have switched to Gorilla tape sized so that it covers the full width of the rim surface when pulled tightly onto the rim. When I do this, tires that didnt fit all that well seem to fit more snug on the rim. I actually changed my front tire last night and have a very difficult time getting the old tire to pop off the bead. Might be worth a shot.

  11. #11
    Knollician
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    Quote Originally Posted by MTBMarkWa View Post
    What are you using for Rim Tape? If you use the Stan's rim tape, they recommend 25mm width for both the Arch EX and the Flow EX. Yet the internal width of the Flow is 4.5mm wider, wtf?. I gave up using their Yellow tape a while ago as I found the tires didnt really seem to fit well on the Flows with the Yellow tape. I have switched to Gorilla tape sized so that it covers the full width of the rim surface when pulled tightly onto the rim. When I do this, tires that didnt fit all that well seem to fit more snug on the rim. I actually changed my front tire last night and have a very difficult time getting the old tire to pop off the bead. Might be worth a shot.
    Thanks. I may have to try that. I do notice the yellow tape is about 2mm short on each side. I will try the gorilla 1" tape and see if that helps, if not, may have to try out some USTs
    "Three balls at once...who knew?" - Cotton McKnight

  12. #12
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    Never owned flows....but if dusty is right, I can recommend DT Swiss rims (Ex500 Fr600), they are the hardest rims ive ever mounted a tyre on (that's every tyre i've tried on them ~7) ....ive broken many many tyre levers and scratched them to bits with screwdrivers trying to get rubber on and off them ...never tried tubeless on them but cant see how it could fail reading this thread...
    2013 Knolly Endorphin | 2013 Knolly Chilcotin | 2014 Knolly Podium.
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  13. #13
    Anytime. Anywhere.
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    I have been on a set of EX's for the past 6 weeks and have had no problems at all. Big Betty's mounted up easily but held on tight. I put on some Chunky Monkey's next and same story. No tire levers and no burping. I am about 200 lbs and run 24-27 rear and 23-25 front. The CM seem are better at lower pressures.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by cfrench View Post
    Never owned flows....but if dusty is right, I can recommend DT Swiss rims (Ex500 Fr600), they are the hardest rims ive ever mounted a tyre on (that's every tyre i've tried on them ~7) ....ive broken many many tyre levers and scratched them to bits with screwdrivers trying to get rubber on and off them ...never tried tubeless on them but cant see how it could fail reading this thread...
    I haven't had a ton of trouble getting tires on my DT Swiss EX500 rims but they don't pop on easy without levers for sure. I use 1" gorilla tape, Stans, and Chunky Monkeys tubeless without any blow offs with 8 months of rocky, droppy, chunky, aggressive riding.

    I do get little mini burbs occasionally in rough terrain (I see where Stans has seaped out at the bead a bit when I'm finished riding but no significant air loss.)

    Yeah, I'd try a layer (or two) of 1" Gorilla tape before giving up on the Flow EX. Lots of people use them and I don't hear many reports of blow offs.

  15. #15
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    I run an EX up front. So far Schwalbe HD's and Bontrager XR4 have been hassle free set up tubeless. I could not get a 2.4 maxxis HRII to seat on the rim w/o blowing off though. I think the rims are sensitive certain brands or models of tires.

  16. #16
    si vis pacem...
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    I rode DT Swiss EX500s on my Chilcotin all season using the 2.35 Maxpro minions (tubed) that came stock with the build kit. Never had any issues until the very last ride of the season when I pinch flatted them twice. I can confirm that they are some of the most difficult rims I have ever tried to get tires on/off of. I broke 3 tire irons (plastic ones - I won't use metal and/or screwdrivers because it chews the hell out of the rim) the first time getting the tire off - the second time wasn't as bad but still bloody tight. Made me feel like a noob, like I had never changed a tire before.

    Overall I do really like the wheels though and I'm planning on going tubeless with them this winter, (Chunky Monkey here I come) so that tight fit should be an advantage. I'll just have to make sure I stock up on tire levers before I try to make the change...

  17. #17
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    Been running Flow Exs for over a year now and have had absolutely zero burps or problems. I've run Racing ralph 2.25s, Nobby Nic 2.35s, and Hans Dampf 2.35s, all the Snakeskin versions. At times I've let the pressure get low, but still no issues.

  18. #18
    Knollician
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    Quote Originally Posted by KRob View Post
    I haven't had a ton of trouble getting tires on my DT Swiss EX500 rims but they don't pop on easy without levers for sure. I use 1" gorilla tape, Stans, and Chunky Monkeys tubeless without any blow offs with 8 months of rocky, droppy, chunky, aggressive riding.

    I do get little mini burbs occasionally in rough terrain (I see where Stans has seaped out at the bead a bit when I'm finished riding but no significant air loss.)

    Yeah, I'd try a layer (or two) of 1" Gorilla tape before giving up on the Flow EX. Lots of people use them and I don't hear many reports of blow offs.
    I have just ordered up a set of WTB I25s which have a UST bead. I will throw some tape on the Flows first to see how the tires mount up. I agree that I have never had issues where the tires were a tight fit. Building up the bead seat with tape might be a good option. If it works, I can always send the I25s back.

    Good to hear that others are no having the same issues with the CMs that I am having. I had no issues when running them on 819s, and there are 3 other guys running CMs in my group who have not had any issues, which leads me to believe the issue is the rim.
    "Three balls at once...who knew?" - Cotton McKnight

  19. #19
    MC MasterShake
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    I've been running the older Flow's on 2 bikes for about 3 seasons now. I just restarted tubeless last year and I did have problems with the Ardent's 2.25 and 2.4's blowing off my rims. I had good luck with the HR2's in 2.4. I ran them as low as 20 and even took them lift riding a few times. My bud has the EX's and he's had problems with the HR2's blowing off the rims.
    Come stay and play at da Kingdom Trails! - http://www.homeaway.com/vacation-rental/p3486813

  20. #20
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    I almost wish I would have bought a few spare pairs of the original Flows when they were on closeout for $50 each.
    If jackasses could fly this place would be an airport.

  21. #21
    Knollician
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    Quote Originally Posted by rscecil007 View Post
    I almost wish I would have bought a few spare pairs of the original Flows when they were on closeout for $50 each.
    It seems that most issues are related to the new BST on the EX models. I never had issues with my previous Flows. I did read that people were having these issues with the EXs before I bought them, but figured they just weren't setting them up correctly.

    I am getting great feedback on the WTB rims, and at $55 per from Arts is hard to beat.
    "Three balls at once...who knew?" - Cotton McKnight

  22. #22
    Anytime. Anywhere.
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    I have had a couple of burps with the original Flows and Schwalbe NN and HD. Met a guy on the trail today with 29 Easton Havens and Hans Dampf which had just burped. He runs 28 psi, was it nosy to ask?
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  23. #23
    Knollician
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    OK, when I got home the Specialized tire was still inflated and lost maybe 2psi. Pretty good. I pulled the tire off, ran 1 wrap of Gorilla tape and mounted the 2Bliss tire back up. This time it was pretty difficult to get on, just as you would expect. I started to feel pretty good about this...until I inflated the tire. At about 28psi....BOOM! Tire blew right off the rim. Keep in mind that this is a tubeless beaded tire, that was nice and tight. Looking at the rim, the sidewall is so short, and the bead hook is all but non-existent, that the extra height of the tape prevents the bead hook from securely grabbing the bead and tucking it in nice and tight. At least that is my opinion.

    I guess my tire selection just won't work well with these rims. The tubeless ready stuff should work fine, with the correct tape setup. I really wish I could find a Schwalbe setup that I liked and was durable enough. I really like the HD casing and tubeless setup, just hated everything else about the tire. Maybe Maxxis will get their sh!t together and make the DHF 2.5 EXO tubeless.

    I actually don't mind the Specialized tubeless tires (Purgatory), reasonably sized, durable and a good weight. They just don't have the rubber compounds figured out like Maxxis or Continental.
    "Three balls at once...who knew?" - Cotton McKnight

  24. #24
    mtbr member
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    Quote Originally Posted by tiSS'er View Post
    OK, when I got home the Specialized tire was still inflated and lost maybe 2psi. Pretty good. I pulled the tire off, ran 1 wrap of Gorilla tape and mounted the 2Bliss tire back up. This time it was pretty difficult to get on, just as you would expect. I started to feel pretty good about this...until I inflated the tire. At about 28psi....BOOM! Tire blew right off the rim. Keep in mind that this is a tubeless beaded tire, that was nice and tight. Looking at the rim, the sidewall is so short, and the bead hook is all but non-existent, that the extra height of the tape prevents the bead hook from securely grabbing the bead and tucking it in nice and tight. At least that is my opinion.

    I guess my tire selection just won't work well with these rims. The tubeless ready stuff should work fine, with the correct tape setup. I really wish I could find a Schwalbe setup that I liked and was durable enough. I really like the HD casing and tubeless setup, just hated everything else about the tire. Maybe Maxxis will get their sh!t together and make the DHF 2.5 EXO tubeless.

    I actually don't mind the Specialized tubeless tires (Purgatory), reasonably sized, durable and a good weight. They just don't have the rubber compounds figured out like Maxxis or Continental.
    Flow EX rim, one layer of 25mm yellow tape, Tubeless ready tire with sealant and that is all you need, period! DHF is in TR now, but as 2.3 (same size as old 2.5's) and more like a 2.4 in true size. My 2.3 DHR II TR is huge as rear tire. If want Schwalbe, just run the TLR casings and your good. Yes, HD's are overated and poor for cornering due to too round and baloonish profile. Floating over rocks is fine, but that is about it.
    Ride On!

  25. #25
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    I debated between the CM (cheap) and the TR DHF2.3 (expensive). Then I took a chance and went with a Rock'r Reinforced 2.4 ($50). Pink bike loved them. Tires should be here this weekend. 900g and true 2.4 width (60/559). The Rock'r 2 will be out this Spring, so may go back to Michelin despite the lame names. Other tires I considered were the HR2, but reviewed mentioned knobs folding over. And the Conti Trail King, and Wild Gripper 2. But the Rock'r seemed most appropriate and looks to be a much better wet conditions tire than a CM, which doesnt shed mud well.

    BTW, I use Orange seal now on all my tires. I holds much better/stronger than Stans. I paint the bead on the tire and the groove on the rim. No word on puncture proofing. But it has nano, so it must be the best thing evar!1!!11!!
    Regional Race Manager, Knolly Bikes
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