Ghetto Tubeless with a non-UST Kenda Small Block 8 and non-tubeless Rims - Don't give
When I bought the SB8 I intended to convert that and my current stock Trek Marlin 2013 rim to tubeless. As I read more about how to do it, everybody said that non-UST SB8's were never born to be tubeless. Something about the bead size, porous sidewalls, whatever it is. I managed to do it, so if you found this while in the middle of trying to convert your own SB8's don't give up goddamnit.
Just to be clear, thisis the version that I used. It's the cleaner version of ghetto tubeless that doesn't leave any inner tube sticking out.
The first attempt at sealing the rim I only used one layer of gorilla tape. This didn't seat the bead or seal the rim enough, but I still kept trying hoping that leaving the Stan's sealant in there overnight with the wheel on its side would be enough. Even in the morning, it didn't seal. I decided to undo the gorilla tape and have a look. I cleaned it up because some sealant got under it down to the spokes, then applied two layers of gorilla tape. I pressed all of the air out for so long that my fingers still hurt. I set the tire on and poured in 4 ounces of sealant. After coercing the bead into the proper location of the rim, I was going to seal it up. Turned the compressor up to 45 psi and kept blasting away until I heard two pops. It took 30 seconds of inflating to hear the first pop and I lost a good bit of sealant in that time. The bubbling coming from the bead went away quickly as the sealant did its job.
What worked for me:
- Two layers of 0.95" gorilla tape on the rim
- Swirling Stan's sealant on the unmounted SB8 to fill in those "pores" in the sidewall
- Inflating at 60 PSI to put air in quickly enough to seat the bead
- Using too much of Stan's Sealant to compensate for what I lost the first attempt
What I wish I knew:
- Beer is necessary
- It takes a while but most of it is waiting for the SB8's imperfections to seal
Hopefully this will be a mighty lifeline of hope for the next person who tries to do this and doesn't find enough information online about this procedure with this tire. I spent 9 total hours working on this. If I knew what I wrote in the "What worked for me" section, it would have taken me 1 or 2 hours, half of it spent on making the gorilla tape perfect.
I don't know if this trick works with non-UST rims, but I inflate a tube in the non-tubeless tire as the first step on my UST rims. Then, I open up one side of the tire only and remove the tube. At least you now have one bead seated. Then put in sealant and air up with the compressor. I run WTB Bronson Race (non-tubeless) tires on my UST rims and I don't even need a compressor to seal the second bead. Also, leaving the tire inflated with the tube overnight can help straighten out badly folded tires and make it easier to seat the tire with sealant.
I hope you have better luck with the non-tubeless Kenda's. Kenda's quality scared me away because they rarely stay inflated overnight when run tubeless and they cut like butter in the rocks. The quality of the non-tubeless WTB tires has been much better for me, and I haven't cut any sidewalls in the rocks.
Last edited by TTTURNER; 04-22-2013 at 10:49 AM.
This may or may not be common knowledge but after doing some research I found out that the only difference in ust and non ust rims are the bigger lip above where the bead sits.
I believe that on a non ust rim the bead will sit way better if we make the lip bigger using tape or some other material.
Whether this may or may not work is, but it will still theoretically yield a better sealed and safer tubeless tire convestion.
I have a great idea to make tubeless conversion better and safer Ill post pics and a new thread when complete.
I've heard of people using Shoe Goo or even rubber cement and painting over the entire inside of a porous tire. Something that might work out better than just swirling around Stans solution and hoping it seals. . .
Also, as mentioned before, inflate first with a tube and then deflate, break one bead, and pull the tube. This way you only have to worry about popping one bead into place.
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