Switched to skinny tubes... what do I need to know?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Reputation: buckfiddious's Avatar
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    Switched to skinny tubes... what do I need to know?

    Got my first flat on the pugs this weekend, Decided to replace it with a 2.3-2.5" bontrager tube. figure 2 tubes cost less than one surly tube...

    Worked fine so far- took a while for the bead to lock up, but it did.

    So, what do I need to know- what's the potential problems using a much smaller tube?

  2. #2
    will rant for food
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    They're a little harder to keep patched because they shrink so much when you deflate them.

    You figured out the rest already, sounds like.

    Biggest combo I've put them in is 80mm GFS rims and BFL tires. Using Q-tubes 2.4"-2.7".
    Disclaimer: I run Regular Cycles (as of 2016). As a profiteer of the bicycle industry, I am not to be taken very seriously.

  3. #3
    nvphatty
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    surly fat toobs aren't necessary and these will suffice just fine.

  4. #4
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    I'm running the Q Tubes super light on the rear of my Moonlander (Clown Shoe / BFL). I put it in when the Surly Toob flatted for no appearant reason. No problems for a few months and a few hundred miles now.

    I've had three flats on my fatbikes this summer, all Surly Toobs. Thumb tac in one, two unexplained. Running Q Tubes as replacements for all with no failures.

  5. #5
    Nemophilist
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    Hey;

    I have not tried skinny tubes yet, mostly because everyone else has already bought all of them! Nobody has any big tubes that are not 50-100% more expensive than the Surly tubes. It's not worth more to me, to "get less."

    One thing I am anticipating is that I will not have nearly the snake bite protection from the thin tubes as with the Surlys. I can thump the rim pretty hard - and have done VERY often - and not pinch flat. On my 26er, it got to the point where if I thumped like that, I just stopped because it was a fait accompli. I've been riding my Fatty for 3 months as a normal trail bike. In that time I've had exactly one flat, and it frankly surprised me. I'd thumped the rim a half dozen times on that ride alone and sort of thought I was going to continue to get away with it. Fait, again; over-tempted.

    If I start flatting all the time and having to run higher pressure to compensate, I'll ditch the skinny tubes in a heartbeat, and go back to old reliable Surly. Changing Fatflats is a pain.
    Most people ply the Well Trodden Path. A few seek a different way, and leave a Trail behind.
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  6. #6
    drev-il, not Dr. Evil!
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    Quote Originally Posted by buckfiddious View Post
    Got my first flat on the pugs this weekend, Decided to replace it with a 2.3-2.5" bontrager tube. figure 2 tubes cost less than one surly tube...

    Worked fine so far- took a while for the bead to lock up, but it did.

    So, what do I need to know- what's the potential problems using a much smaller tube?
    I've used the Surly tube once, but only because I ran out of skinny tubes. Generally, I use 29x2.1-2.3 tubes, and usually it's the Specialized ones because that's what my shop carries.

    I've used other brands, and once or twice the tube split right down the seam. Just riding along and POOF! 11psi - nada in an instant. They weren't the Specialized ones, so I avoid others now unless I have nothing else on hand.

    The only annoying thing to me is around the valve, where there's a divot because the rubber around the valve doesn't stretch as much as the rest of the tube. I overpump into the 20s when I first install the tube and let it sit overnight, then deflate to the proper pressure when I'm about to ride.
    "Keep your burgers lean and your tires fat." -h.d. | ssoft | flickr

  7. #7
    WNC Native
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    Hrmm, may have to try that. I already have a pile of 29er tubes.
    "I ride to clear my head, my head is clearer when I'm riding SS. Therefore, I choose to ride SS."~ Fullrange Drew

  8. #8
    nvphatty
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    Quote Originally Posted by nitrousjunky View Post
    Hrmm, may have to try that. I already have a pile of 29er tubes.
    yes they will suffice although will inflate inward as opposed to outward like a 26" toob.

  9. #9
    Self Inflicted
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    Another vote for Q tubes 26 x 2.4 - 2.7. I have been using one in the back of my pugs for a few months now. Takes a bit more air to get the bead to seat. After that it is no different than the surly tube.

  10. #10
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    I used a Surly Toob on my Conundrum, but have been using Specialized 26x2.25" tubes on the Fat Front Fixie. I haven't flatted yet in just under 2000 miles of urban and off-road riding.

  11. #11
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    Straight from the QBP website:

    "Q-Tubes Superlight tubes.

    TU6661

    Can be used with fat bike tires 4.0" and under "

    So, should be no big deal. I've just ordered some with my new tires (Larry 3.8's). Trying to knock down my rotational weight.

  12. #12
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    I opted to use a DH 26x2.4 that i salvaged of a throwaway bike, i'll be mounting them in an Uma 70 this evening, what should i be looking for when i pump it up? When I inflate the tire so much to fill the 26x4 Nate how does it work to have lower pressure, I guess some of this i'll soon see, just curious. How will I know when the bead has set? Sorry if these are dumb questions. First time putting a tube on a fat rim.
    Last edited by f00g; 10-13-2012 at 01:20 PM. Reason: nate tire size was wrong

  13. #13
    How much does it weigh?
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    I think I will try some Q-Tubes soon... my IRC stash will last a long time, but the front tire makes that exciting squelching sound if it's too low of pressure, drove me nuts when I first heard it, couldn't figure it out.

  14. #14
    Caveman
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    as someone mentioned earlier -forget trying to patch normal sized tubes in fat tires with the volume they need to expand. Maybe with some of the DH ones you could make it work but don't get caught with your pants down.

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