Tire inserts, which one would you choose?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Tire inserts, which one would you choose?

    Not wanting to steal other threads, with all the new (and not so new) options which would be your choice: cush core, huck norris, rimpact, tyre invader, vittoria liner, barbieri anaconda, pepi's tire noodle, marshguard or schwalbe procore.

  2. #2
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    Kind of depends on intended use. I still think Cush is the best for smashing. If you want light weight with less protection the rimpacts look really nice. Iíve got a set in the garage waiting for my new wheels but I like the shape. I weighed a rimpact at 90 grams and Cush is 300 (both 29). They are shaped similar to the Cush so Iím hoping they provide some of the feel the cush gives. I havenít seen the new pepis in person yet but the red ones arenít great. Slightly better than no insert. I found huck useless. Procore is pretty low on the list too. Iíd like to see the marsh and tyre invaders in person.

  3. #3
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    Don't buy into the CushCore 'feel'... it's a foam insert to attempt to protect your rim from impacts. You can still kill a rim even with CushCore. I did, through a DoubleDown tire nonetheless.

    I still run CushCore out back, but don't mess with lower pressures
    I like 'em long, low, slack and playful

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by 06HokieMTB View Post
    Don't buy into the CushCore 'feel'... it's a foam insert to attempt to protect your rim from impacts. You can still kill a rim even with CushCore. I did, through a DoubleDown tire nonetheless.

    I still run CushCore out back, but don't mess with lower pressures
    Iíve killed rims through cush/dd too but out of all of the inserts Iíve tried itís still the most effective. For me (and multiple people I know) it improves feel. Itís not one of those placebo things, from the first dh run itís immediately apparent. You get better side wall support and it deadens the chatter a bit. Theyíre all foam but the Cush is much more dense than the lighter options. I donít drop the pressure much but my wheels last a lot longer when I run it. Itís total overkill weight vs reward for trail riding but for dh and some enduro courses itís pretty worth while.

  5. #5
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    I'm tempted to try Cush Core in my 2.8's for 1) optimal air pressure, yet not hit the rim and 2) maybe reduce the bouncy feelings on the rough stuff.

    I don't expect it to be a solution to all things bad, but hopefully allows 14 or less PSI and not hit hard on the chunk. I'm 155lbs....generally do okay with the chunk, but when I plan the harsh trail I air up a bit more, probably 15ish. Still need a proper gauge to know the PSI better than the gauge I have currently.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by jimarin View Post
    Iíve killed rims through cush/dd too but out of all of the inserts Iíve tried itís still the most effective. For me (and multiple people I know) it improves feel. Itís not one of those placebo things, from the first dh run itís immediately apparent. You get better side wall support and it deadens the chatter a bit. Theyíre all foam but the Cush is much more dense than the lighter options. I donít drop the pressure much but my wheels last a lot longer when I run it. Itís total overkill weight vs reward for trail riding but for dh and some enduro courses itís pretty worth while.

    I agree. Cushcore made a big difference in feel for me. The improved sidewall stiffness made for much more precise handling in the turns. It felt like I was correcting understeer that I never knew existed before. I've yet to crush a rim with cushcore, but don't drop below 18 psi on 27.5 x 2.4 or 27.5 x 2.5 tires.

    With Huck Norris, I typically run 22 psi F &R

    I weigh 165 lbs, for reference. Currently, because my legs are poo this time of year, I'm running Huck for the weight savings but will likely revert back to CC later.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by jimarin View Post
    Iíve killed rims through cush/dd too but out of all of the inserts Iíve tried itís still the most effective. For me (and multiple people I know) it improves feel. Itís not one of those placebo things, from the first dh run itís immediately apparent. You get better side wall support and it deadens the chatter a bit. Theyíre all foam but the Cush is much more dense than the lighter options. I donít drop the pressure much but my wheels last a lot longer when I run it. Itís total overkill weight vs reward for trail riding but for dh and some enduro courses itís pretty worth while.
    I could feel a dampening right off the bat with CC, no questions. Too bad it's just not a little more user friendly for daily use.

  8. #8
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    I've chosen Rimpact and I'm happy. If I was Downhill racing I'd probably run a cushcore but I still pedal up and I practice obstacle avoidance pretty well.

  9. #9
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    I am a big fan of 2" (1 1/2" for XC tires) closed cell backer rod, tape, and glue.

    You can build your own insert for really cheap, and the backer rod is pretty damm effective for most people. And at 60-70grams per insert it doesn't weigh a lot.
    "The best pace is suicide pace, and today is a good day to die." Steve Prefontaine

  10. #10
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    I put Huck Norris on the rear tire of my hardtail.

    It's just a trail bike, so I didn't want the extra burly weight of CC. So far, it's doing what I want/expect from it. Had a leaky valve core and some rim strikes on rocks. The insert saved my brand new rims (seriously, this was my first ride on this bike...brand new valves, too. I'm a little miffed that one of the valves was bad right out of the box).

    I'm still figuring out tire pressures, as this bike has a new wheel/tire size for me. 13psi up front actually seems good (which seems strange to me...but whatever). I've been running 16psi in the back, but it occasionally squirms a little. Next ride I'm going to bump it up to 17psi. Running 29x 2.6 tires, and I'm probably close to 190 kitted up.

  11. #11
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    I've run: Huck Norris, Cushcore, Vittoria airliner. Huck Norris I didn't feel like did anything at all. Cushcore definitely had the most effect on ride feel/dampening of the three, but I still destroyed rims (two) with it. The Airliner is what I currently run (rear only), seems to have slightly better rimstrike protection than Cushcore but not as many other ride characteristics. They don't get much press but the few reviews I could find (from British mtb mags/sites) seem to agree that the Vittoria gives the best rim strike protection. Also fwiw I only run inserts in the rear, I don't like the muted/damped feel of inserts in my front tire but need them for rim strikes in the rear

  12. #12
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    I've only ran Pepi's. I currently run the red up front with 20 psi and the yellow in the rear with 24psi.
    I REALLY like the feel. It still feels light, rolls fast, but thin sided sidewall tires feel more firm than a Gravity casing. Also I run 4 psi less than my usual F&R.
    I still screw up my rear wheel pretty often but I have only once gotten that 'ping' sound one time on the front in the last few months, where I use to get that maybe every other ride.
    I'm going to build some new wheels and i'm going DH on the rear this time on a trail bike.

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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by LMN View Post
    I am a big fan of 2" (1 1/2" for XC tires) closed cell backer rod, tape, and glue.

    You can build your own insert for really cheap, and the backer rod is pretty damm effective for most people. And at 60-70grams per insert it doesn't weigh a lot.
    Where do you buy the hacker rod? I'm tempted to try this out.

  14. #14
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    I've been running CushCore front and rear and am quite happy with them. First, the weight. They weigh the same as an inner tube, so it's as if I was still running with tubes weight wise. I've only run them in Michelin Wild AM 29x2.35 tires, which are lighter/softer than some other tires, certainly compared to DH tires. With the Michelins; tubeless I had to run around 25psi to prevent squirming and burping under hard cornering. With the CushCore I am running as low as 18-19psi Fr/Rr and still have great stability and feel. They will squirm a little or burp some if you're getting rowdy at those pressures, but just a little. The front end is much more supple and controlled over high speed chatter too, making it easier to maintain your line. Also, I'm yet to destroy a wheel or snakebite a tire since adding them, despite destroying 4 tires and 1 rim here in SoCal before adding them.
    . . . . . . . .

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by ScottieM8 View Post
    Where do you buy the hacker rod? I'm tempted to try this out.
    Amazon.

    I made 17 inserts for $100 in material.
    "The best pace is suicide pace, and today is a good day to die." Steve Prefontaine

  16. #16
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    Only one ride in on the Rimpact inserts and I'm still messing with pressures but running the same pressure as before installation I can tell there's no significant damping from simply installing the inserts. The damping must primarily come from lower pressures.

  17. #17
    Nat
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    I have the Vittoria Air-Liners. In addition to the rim protection I like that they let your tires act as ďrun flatĒ tires.

  18. #18
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    I recently installed the Vittorria, which replaced a Huck Norris, which replaced a cush core, which replaced a Huck Norris.

    Cushcore has amazing feel, but the weight on long Colorado climbs got to me, as did the installation PITA.

    Huck Norris did what it was supposed to do. I have no pinch flats or major ring dings. But seems a bit pithy and I don't fully trust it.

    I don't have enough time on the Vittoria to comment yet, but seems like a nice combo of protection, weight and ease of installation.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by LMN View Post
    Amazon.

    I made 17 inserts for $100 in material.
    Thoughts on your DIY approach mid way through the season?

    I'm liking the Vittoria insert, but can feel the weight. Very tempted by the lighter backer rod version.
    If it's not powered solely by you, it's motorized.

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  20. #20
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    I'm still a believer in Pepi's.

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  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by ACree View Post
    Thoughts on your DIY approach mid way through the season?

    I'm liking the Vittoria insert, but can feel the weight. Very tempted by the lighter backer rod version.
    Still super happy with DIY approach. So far I have only had one pinch flat through the insert, and that was after I made a rather significant mistake. Without the insert I would have killed the rim for sure, but there was zero damage to my rim.

    All the inserts I made are being used by riders of rather significant skill level and all of them are quite happy with them.
    "The best pace is suicide pace, and today is a good day to die." Steve Prefontaine

  22. #22
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    I had Huck Norris for a while front and back. it caused the Orange Seal I was running to turn into their version of "stanimals" within about 100 miles of riding. Maybe something about the way the sealant worked around the inserts, like a butter churn or something. Anyway, I got rid of them.

  23. #23
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    Anyone try mynesweepers? lightweight, the little feedback i can find sounds good. I'm tempted to try them, Cushcores are awesome but the weight sucks. They are definitely better on descents and help a good bit with flat protection, but running them front and rear i'm a good bit slower on everything but descents with them.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by mrsa101 View Post
    Anyone try mynesweepers? lightweight, the little feedback i can find sounds good. I'm tempted to try them, Cushcores are awesome but the weight sucks. They are definitely better on descents and help a good bit with flat protection, but running them front and rear i'm a good bit slower on everything but descents with them.
    This guy has some nice insights. I like the Cushcore valve stem idea.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AGPTcV1HLBY

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by LMN View Post
    Still super happy with DIY approach. So far I have only had one pinch flat through the insert, and that was after I made a rather significant mistake. Without the insert I would have killed the rim for sure, but there was zero damage to my rim.

    All the inserts I made are being used by riders of rather significant skill level and all of them are quite happy with them.
    Care to share tips on how you make them? What adhesives do you use? I am tempted to buy a box of backer and have at it. Any tips on exact lengths to cut them?
    GG Smash

  26. #26
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    I don't know about the pool noodle (Minesweeper) long term. My kids left the pool noodles in the pool and they were totally saturated with water after about a week of floating. What does that mean for your sealant? . . . . .
    . . . . . . . .

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by scatterbrained View Post
    I don't know about the pool noodle (Minesweeper) long term. My kids left the pool noodles in the pool and they were totally saturated with water after about a week of floating. What does that mean for your sealant? . . . . .
    Win/Win. When the pool noodle deteriorates it will provide larger particles to fill even larger holes.

  28. #28
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    We can add the Tubolight and Noob inserts to the mix, both in the "professionally crafted pool noodle" category.

    I've been running Cushcores and they are fabulous if you can get over the weight. Lower pressure, better grip, more damped feel. I am noticeably less fatigued after several hours in the bike park. I have a standard CC in my rear tire and an XC up front in my gravity/Enduro wheel set, and an XC in the rear of my general trail wheels. I probably wouldn't run even the CC XC for actual XC though, they are definitely heavy.

    For anyone making their own (or using the Vittoria), don't you compromise the tight fit to the tire bead? CC sits really tight on the rim, which clamps down on the tire bead to prevent burps and support the sidewalls. Seems like anything where you're just zip-tying a noodle into a circle could not achieve this tight fit. While makes it a PITA to install, this seems like a key feature of an insert.

  29. #29
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    The Vittoria definitely doesn't provide the same level of sidewall support or anti-burp as cushcore (though there is some). I don't care about that personally as I only run inserts in the rear and am not sensitive to the ''cornering feel'' of my rear tire. I run the Vittoria because the Cushcore failed at the primary job I bought it for, to protect my rims from rocks

  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by rpearce1475 View Post
    The Vittoria definitely doesn't provide the same level of sidewall support or anti-burp as cushcore (though there is some). I don't care about that personally as I only run inserts in the rear and am not sensitive to the ''cornering feel'' of my rear tire. I run the Vittoria because the Cushcore failed at the primary job I bought it for, to protect my rims from rocks
    Yeah, I canít compare density, but something a lot of cushcore fans donít realize is that cushcores are barely even thicker than a yuck Norris over the rim wall, maybe not even thicker at all. Most of their volume is in the inner channel of the rim. Victoria air liners, which I currently use, have way more protection, they weigh less and the install is easy. The only downside is that I think they cause sealant to dry up quicker and I think they might get in the way of sealant trying to find a hole in certain areas. But you can cautiously finish a downhill race on a flat front tire with an air liner. Iíve done it.

  31. #31
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    I've used the Air-Liner now for a handful of rides. Once recently on a pretty rough rocky trail, one I would have preferred my other bike for. I did add air before the ride for 'rock protection' anyway. It was definitely a more bouncy ride on the plus tire with more air. I honestly forgot I had the insert installed until after I started to ride. Still good though, gave me the chance to hit the small water bar jumps harder (landing in rocks) with less worry. If there were large rocks or a lot of them I didn't ride it too hard, just my normal. With that said, I rode the trail 4 seconds faster than the week before on the full suspension bike with 2.35's. I think I was faster the 2nd time because I had better legs that day, not so much because of 'smash'.

    I also rode through a crap ton of blackberry and some star thistle. No evidence of seeping sealant, but also tire isn't low on air. Sealant may have worked, or wasn't necessary. In contrast, my worn out 2.35 on the other bike (no liner) is riddled with wet spots around it's diameter.

    I don't find I have lowered the air pressure but rather feel the rim is protected at the same air presser as before the liner installation. On the accu-gage, 14-14.5 psi for the rear with the Air-Liner. It seems logical that the tire would require more (or the same) as the volume is reduced anyway. Similar to why a 2.3 tire runs 20psi (less volume).

    For what its worth, rear tire is Maxxis Ikon, EXO. Traction for the conditions suck but that's beside the point .... the tire did hold up well with at least 15psi, maybe 15.5, and the liner.

  32. #32
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    Is there a significant benefit to inserts when you've not maximized the protection from the tire casing itself?

    What I mean by this is.... I run Flat Tire Defenders on my DH rig because I'm running DH tires and I can't get more protection short of upping the psi to levels that severly compromise traction. (Currently run 30 psi out back and still rim ding not infrequently - 175#). But if I were running regular casing tires, before I'd go with an insert I sooner eliminate the hassle and just go with a Double Down type casing. I suppose if your favorite tire did not come in that casing it would be different.

    So for example, say you are running a 2.5 DHF Exo and you need "more protection". Is there that much more advantage to an insert vs just going up to a double down casing?

  33. #33
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    As mentioned above I'm running Rimpacts. I haven't actually been able to lower my pressures. I think they simply don't add enough lateral stiffness to the tire and the tire above the insert is still free to deform (probably good for slow tech and slower riders). They help soften rim strikes and that's why I'm still using them. Going to a DD casing made a noticeably bigger difference in cornering support and precision than the Rimpacts. I was even able to drop the pressure 1 psi and decrease squirm at the same time. I might can go even lower.

  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Miker J View Post
    Is there a significant benefit to inserts when you've not maximized the protection from the tire casing itself?

    What I mean by this is.... I run Flat Tire Defenders on my DH rig because I'm running DH tires and I can't get more protection short of upping the psi to levels that severly compromise traction. (Currently run 30 psi out back and still rim ding not infrequently - 175#). But if I were running regular casing tires, before I'd go with an insert I sooner eliminate the hassle and just go with a Double Down type casing. I suppose if your favorite tire did not come in that casing it would be different.

    So for example, say you are running a 2.5 DHF Exo and you need "more protection". Is there that much more advantage to an insert vs just going up to a double down casing?
    I run DD tires and Cushcore. Other than saving rims when smashing into stuff. The damping keeps the tires from bouncing off of rocks,

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Miker J View Post
    Is there a significant benefit to inserts when you've not maximized the protection from the tire casing itself?

    What I mean by this is.... I run Flat Tire Defenders on my DH rig because I'm running DH tires and I can't get more protection short of upping the psi to levels that severly compromise traction. (Currently run 30 psi out back and still rim ding not infrequently - 175#). But if I were running regular casing tires, before I'd go with an insert I sooner eliminate the hassle and just go with a Double Down type casing. I suppose if your favorite tire did not come in that casing it would be different.

    So for example, say you are running a 2.5 DHF Exo and you need "more protection". Is there that much more advantage to an insert vs just going up to a double down casing?
    Inserts help with tire stability and snake bites, DD casing helps with stability and tire slashes.

    I chose light trail tires with light inserts because: 1) DD tires roll pretty poorly, apparently because the stiffness doesn't allow them to flex right at the tread, 2) it results in a considerably lighter overall set up, 3) I rarely slash tires anymore, 4) I'm going to have a spare set of rims just for DH that will have DD AND inserts.

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  36. #36
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    I've found the protection from lighter tires with (good) inserts to be better than DD without inserts. Also I like that the insert is there as a failsafe, gives me more peace of mind when I'm blasting through rock gardens at mach chicken

  37. #37
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    I found that CushCore + EXO was solid for 90% of riding, offering reduced arm pump (at bike parks) and better traction through lower pressure, but I was not happy with the compromise with the upper limits of my tire setup. I ran this setup for a couple years, actually managing to wear out a set of Minion DHR2 (3000 mi+ of light duty use). I wanted to really not worry about failure, so I upgraded to DH casing, but found the tires wore out too fast, then dialed back to SuperGravity without CushCore.

    Only complaint is how the CushCore reduced the amount of usable sealant in the tire, trapping it. It was a very worthy upgrade, just found that after experimenting with a different riding style, one that places more trust in the bike and just fearlessly blasting through, I needed something waaaay stronger.

    Only took a few failures to convince me to get something more reliable, considering I often am 15 miles+ away from a convenient way home and dread walking out with a mechanical, due to some underbuilt weight-weenie junk on the bike. I left CushCore out for convenient sealant refilling and because the tires fit way too tight when new.

  38. #38
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    Pepi's has a new insert design...

    R-evolution:

    https://www.maxalami.de/PTN-Pepis-Ti...ufty-Ventile_1

    The shape looks really good. Definitely interested to hear some feedback once some folks get some miles on them

  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by GT87 View Post
    Pepi's has a new insert design...

    R-evolution:

    https://www.maxalami.de/PTN-Pepis-Ti...ufty-Ventile_1

    The shape looks really good. Definitely interested to hear some feedback once some folks get some miles on them
    That will be my next insert once I go thru my current stock.
    Notice that the new Pepi insert is one continuous piece instead of zip tied together. Also really like how it's flattened at the tire tread instead of round. This will reduce rolling resistance.

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  40. #40
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    Been smashing my hardtail for more than six months with Rimpacts now, impressive inserts!!! I could lower the tire pressure from 22 psi (lowest possible without inserts) to 18 psi and got even less rolling resistance on the trails. More than happy. Will get a pair to my SC Nomad also, as soon as I build some new wheels for it. https://www.rimpactmtb.com/

  41. #41
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    Any of you running the vittoria insert does it matter to the insert what sealants you use? Would it be better to use the vittoria sealant?

  42. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by timsmcm View Post
    Any of you running the vittoria insert does it matter to the insert what sealants you use? Would it be better to use the vittoria sealant?
    I'm pretty sure I remember reading that it should be a non-ammonia based sealant, so no Stan's

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  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Suns_PSD View Post
    That will be my next insert once I go thru my current stock.
    Notice that the new Pepi insert is one continuous piece instead of zip tied together. Also really like how it's flattened at the tire tread instead of round. This will reduce rolling resistance.

    Sent from my SM-G892A using Tapatalk
    I've yet to use any inserts and have been waiting by the sideline to see how this stuff plays out for a while. I really like the shape of that new Pepi insert. I use 58-63mm tires, and I'll probably go with either the medium airliner or the m/l new pepi's insert.

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  44. #44
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    I've run all the different sealants in my Vittoria. Had best luck with Orange Seal

  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by GT87 View Post
    Pepi's has a new insert design...

    R-evolution:

    https://www.maxalami.de/PTN-Pepis-Ti...ufty-Ventile_1

    The shape looks really good. Definitely interested to hear some feedback once some folks get some miles on them
    Any tips on ordering. Unless I did it incorrectly, shipping charges equal 100 euros !

  46. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by attaboy View Post
    Any tips on ordering. Unless I did it incorrectly, shipping charges equal 100 euros !
    Where are you shipping to? I priced it out on bike-24 and I think it was 83 euro + 20 for shipping to the US

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    Quote Originally Posted by MSU Alum View Post
    I had Huck Norris for a while front and back. it caused the Orange Seal I was running to turn into their version of "stanimals" within about 100 miles of riding. Maybe something about the way the sealant worked around the inserts, like a butter churn or something. Anyway, I got rid of them.
    This seems to be an issue and is a main reason I just invested in cush core.

    Many regular foam inserts seem to loosen up and elongate, which allows them to contact the tire and this causes the sealant to dry up into boogers almost immediately. Huck does this right out of the box.

    I was using ARD inserts, super cheap, but the elongation problem isn't solved by cutting them and shortening them, within a few rides they are stretched out again and all the sealant is coagulated.

    ARD certainly worked, the feel is better, ran a little less pressure, and they prevent rim damage, but the issue with sealant is a deal breaker for me. I'll take the extra 1/4 lb a cush core weighs, and went with CC XC up front, which is the same weight as ARD.

  48. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by GT87 View Post
    Pepi's has a new insert design...

    R-evolution:

    https://www.maxalami.de/PTN-Pepis-Ti...ufty-Ventile_1

    The shape looks really good. Definitely interested to hear some feedback once some folks get some miles on them
    Any tips on ordering. Unless I did it incorrectly, shipping charges equal 100 euros !

  49. #49
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    Tire inserts, which one would you choose?

    Quote Originally Posted by GT87 View Post
    Where are you shipping to? I priced it out on bike-24 and I think it was 83 euro + 20 for shipping to the US

    Sent from my moto g(7) power using Tapatalk
    This was straight from the website associated with that link. Shipping to US. Maybe there was en error. But, thank u for the link. I will try it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by timsmcm View Post
    Any of you running the vittoria insert does it matter to the insert what sealants you use? Would it be better to use the vittoria sealant?
    Been running these for 1.5 years or so. Always use Stans. No issues.

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    I have run the original cushcore and just got the cushcore XCs. I really like the XCs. Didn't like the Cushcore original that much (they are heavy and weren't really needed on my full suspension for the riding I do).

    I am running the XCs on a hardtail and they do a great job of improving traction and comfort without that much additional weight (150 grams / 5 ounces each)

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    It depends on what casing you're going to stuff an insert into. If the weight comes within 100g of something like double down or DH tubeless then go that route. I've run procore and airliner, both in casings that brought the weight within 100g of DH. Both reduced pinches and dents, but both had to be packed out at some point, and rims still dented. Procore even snapped a few spokes from high psi. Packing out inserts sucks. DH tubeless has always been bomb proof for me. Rim protection is overrated in my experience. I prefer to take the weight penalty in the casing. So I would go DD tubeless if you're thinking about exo+ insert, or DH if you're thinking DD+ insert. If you need DH plus insert you don't need my advice, I need yours.

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    Quote Originally Posted by slimat99 View Post
    It depends on what casing you're going to stuff an insert into. If the weight comes within 100g of something like double down or DH tubeless then go that route. I've run procore and airliner, both in casings that brought the weight within 100g of DH. Both reduced pinches and dents, but both had to be packed out at some point, and rims still dented. Procore even snapped a few spokes from high psi. Packing out inserts sucks. DH tubeless has always been bomb proof for me. Rim protection is overrated in my experience. I prefer to take the weight penalty in the casing. So I would go DD tubeless if you're thinking about exo+ insert, or DH if you're thinking DD+ insert. If you need DH plus insert you don't need my advice, I need yours.
    I'll be using exo+/ss 2.4/2.5 tires with an insert. I don't have a problem with cutting sidewalls, but I do have a problem with pinch-flatting, denting and flat spotting the rear rim, even with ~28psi in the rear. It seems like the weight of an exo casing plus pepi's insert is going to be significantly less than a double down w/o insert, have less rolling resistance, and hopefully offer equal or greater flat resistance. But, I'm just speculating.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GT87 View Post
    I'll be using exo+/ss 2.4/2.5 tires with an insert. I don't have a problem with cutting sidewalls, but I do have a problem with pinch-flatting, denting and flat spotting the rear rim, even with ~28psi in the rear. It seems like the weight of an exo casing plus pepi's insert is going to be significantly less than a double down w/o insert, have less rolling resistance, and hopefully offer equal or greater flat resistance. But, I'm just speculating.

    Sent from my moto g(7) power using Tapatalk
    Exact same position here.
    I end up more reliable with a more trail worthy set up using an insert on a trail tire rather than just a DH tire.
    It seems too that the lower air pressures I can run with inserts protects the tires from damage by allowing them to conform and I save rims.

    Sent from my SM-G892A using Tapatalk

  55. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by slimat99 View Post
    I prefer to take the weight penalty in the casing.

    I'm starting to think this maybe the way to go for higher speed riding. It seems most EWS enduro racers go up in casing weight before adding inserts. From what I've gathered there's more enduro racers running DH tires without inserts than there are racers running lighter tires with inserts. Fabien Barrell talked about this recently in a podcast and basically said you're better off with the weight being part of the tire because inserts don't reinforce the tread area. I've thought the same thing for a while...an insert sitting down near the rim isn't going to do a whole lot to prevent the tread (side knobs) from deforming in corners. It might add some lateral stiffness to the tire and prevent the tire from rolling off the rim but I still feel the tread squirming in high speed corners. If you think about car tire design, the bulk of the reinforcement comes from the belts which sit directly under the tread. Adding sidewall reinforcement is a secondary concern to the direct dimensional stability of the tread.

    Inserts are great for getting comfort, traction, and support at moderate speeds but I'm not sure that's the way to go for high speed applications.

  56. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeremy3220 View Post
    I'm starting to think this maybe the way to go for higher speed riding. It seems most EWS enduro racers go up in casing weight before adding inserts. From what I've gathered there's more enduro racers running DH tires without inserts than there are racers running lighter tires with inserts. Fabien Barrell talked about this recently in a podcast and basically said you're better off with the weight being part of the tire because inserts don't reinforce the tread area. I've thought the same thing for a while...an insert sitting down near the rim isn't going to do a whole lot to prevent the tread (side knobs) from deforming in corners. It might add some lateral stiffness to the tire and prevent the tire from rolling off the rim but I still feel the tread squirming in high speed corners. If you think about car tire design, the bulk of the reinforcement comes from the belts which sit directly under the tread. Adding sidewall reinforcement is a secondary concern to the direct dimensional stability of the tread.

    Inserts are great for getting comfort, traction, and support at moderate speeds but I'm not sure that's the way to go for high speed applications.
    Yeah, I think you're probably right. But, if we're assuming that you can get get adequate flat/rim protection from either a light tire+insert or a dh tire, and perhaps even similar weights, it's really coming down to a compromise between high speed stability and rolling resistance. For Enduro racing, obviously the priority is downhill performance and a dual ply casing may be the best choice. For all-mtn riding with long days, I don't think I'm willing to give up the rolling resistance of lighter casings yet. Also, I think part of it comes down to the trail surface. If you ride a lot of hardpack then knob squirm is more of an issue. I deal with more loam, mud, roots, damp rocks, where I don't think a lighter casing is as much of a burden.

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  57. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by slimat99 View Post
    It depends on what casing you're going to stuff an insert into. If the weight comes within 100g of something like double down or DH tubeless then go that route. I've run procore and airliner, both in casings that brought the weight within 100g of DH. Both reduced pinches and dents, but both had to be packed out at some point, and rims still dented. Procore even snapped a few spokes from high psi. Packing out inserts sucks. DH tubeless has always been bomb proof for me. Rim protection is overrated in my experience. I prefer to take the weight penalty in the casing. So I would go DD tubeless if you're thinking about exo+ insert, or DH if you're thinking DD+ insert. If you need DH plus insert you don't need my advice, I need yours.
    I know a few EWS pro racers running Maxxis tires, they are on DH casing + inserts. Maybe DD up front.

    For those of us with a little less fitness to pedal that much tire around and not hitting rocks at insane speeds I think there's pro and cons to running lighter tires + inserts vs heavier tires. I've tried both and I agree a DH casing tire w/o inserts is enough for a great majority of folks but I prefer a more medium duty tire like DD, SG or currently Michelin Wild Enduro + inserts. Better sidewall durability, but more supple vs DH casing and can run lower pressures w/o squirm or burping, also for racing the insert can act as a run-flat device.

  58. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by davec113 View Post
    I know a few EWS pro racers running Maxxis tires, they are on DH casing + inserts. Maybe DD up front.

    For those of us with a little less fitness to pedal that much tire around and not hitting rocks at insane speeds I think there's pro and cons to running lighter tires + inserts vs heavier tires. I've tried both and I agree a DH casing tire w/o inserts is enough for a great majority of folks but I prefer a more medium duty tire like DD, SG or currently Michelin Wild Enduro + inserts. Better sidewall durability, but more supple vs DH casing and can run lower pressures w/o squirm or burping, also for racing the insert can act as a run-flat device.
    Agree completely. I added an insert to my rear tire only because I got a rash of pinch flats on my normal rides. The insert has added enough protection that I don't need to change anything else, and it came with a minimal cost in terms of weight or rolling resistance (I am using the red Pepi's Tire Noodle - their lightest one). I was pretty sure I didn't need to make a significant change. I have no doubt that lots of riders need more protection than what I need, but I would say many of us normal Joes can get away with smaller, more incremental changes in our setups to get some extra durability.

  59. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by davec113 View Post
    I know a few EWS pro racers running Maxxis tires, they are on DH casing + inserts. Maybe DD up front.

    For those of us with a little less fitness to pedal that much tire around and not hitting rocks at insane speeds I think there's pro and cons to running lighter tires + inserts vs heavier tires. I've tried both and I agree a DH casing tire w/o inserts is enough for a great majority of folks but I prefer a more medium duty tire like DD, SG or currently Michelin Wild Enduro + inserts. Better sidewall durability, but more supple vs DH casing and can run lower pressures w/o squirm or burping, also for racing the insert can act as a run-flat device.
    Run flat for races is for sure a great benefit. I was under the impression the OP is asking for general use. I've run flat procore twice and vittoria airline once. The latter barely kept the tire on the rim so I wouldn't count on it finishing a stage. Maybe a short DH run? Procore did a great job of keeping the bead locked. I'm still a believer in heavier casings over inserts unless you need run flat for a race. You can't enjoy the ride even if you can run flat so for trail riding I'll always run a tube out. In the end I found procore and airliner with 1000g to 1070g casings wasn't as durable as DH tubeless. weights were roughly the same, and DH tubeless offers much better sidewall cut protection. Less rolling resistance too compared to airliner. I don't like super low psi even with procore. You can feel the casing fold in a funny way even if the bead is locked solid. I really like procore but Schwalbe needs to work on the valve design. Neither of my tubes could hold high psi for long, and if you run 70ish you're prone to snapping spokes. Even when I backed it off to 60 I snapped a spoke. The valve clogs with sealant very easily too. Not just the valve core, the little holes that let the air pass into the tubeless chamber gunk up way too easily. Hopefully we see a procore 2.0, maybe with rims designed to handle high psi too. I still run my airliner when I run michelin WR2 tires because they don't come in a DH casing. When it comes to maxxis, I go DH rather than inserts. For me I experience fewer tire issues. For your EWS friends on race day they make good sense.

  60. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by GT87 View Post
    Yeah, I think you're probably right. But, if we're assuming that you can get get adequate flat/rim protection from either a light tire+insert or a dh tire, and perhaps even similar weights, it's really coming down to a compromise between high speed stability and rolling resistance. For Enduro racing, obviously the priority is downhill performance and a dual ply casing may be the best choice. For all-mtn riding with long days, I don't think I'm willing to give up the rolling resistance of lighter casings yet. Also, I think part of it comes down to the trail surface. If you ride a lot of hardpack then knob squirm is more of an issue. I deal with more loam, mud, roots, damp rocks, where I don't think a lighter casing is as much of a burden.

    Sent from my moto g(7) power using Tapatalk

    There's definitely different considerations to take into account. On my hardtail with faster rolling tires a light insert is definitely worth it. On that bike rim strikes and comfort are bigger concerns than tire squirm at high speed.

  61. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by slimat99 View Post
    Run flat for races is for sure a great benefit. I was under the impression the OP is asking for general use. I've run flat procore twice and vittoria airline once. The latter barely kept the tire on the rim so I wouldn't count on it finishing a stage. Maybe a short DH run? Procore did a great job of keeping the bead locked. I'm still a believer in heavier casings over inserts unless you need run flat for a race. You can't enjoy the ride even if you can run flat so for trail riding I'll always run a tube out. In the end I found procore and airliner with 1000g to 1070g casings wasn't as durable as DH tubeless. weights were roughly the same, and DH tubeless offers much better sidewall cut protection. Less rolling resistance too compared to airliner. I don't like super low psi even with procore. You can feel the casing fold in a funny way even if the bead is locked solid. I really like procore but Schwalbe needs to work on the valve design. Neither of my tubes could hold high psi for long, and if you run 70ish you're prone to snapping spokes. Even when I backed it off to 60 I snapped a spoke. The valve clogs with sealant very easily too. Not just the valve core, the little holes that let the air pass into the tubeless chamber gunk up way too easily. Hopefully we see a procore 2.0, maybe with rims designed to handle high psi too. I still run my airliner when I run michelin WR2 tires because they don't come in a DH casing. When it comes to maxxis, I go DH rather than inserts. For me I experience fewer tire issues. For your EWS friends on race day they make good sense.
    Yeah, I tried the run flat thing for the first time recently and it was a lot less fun than an inflated tire! It was a very odd incident though, I was climbing, it was fairly flat, I was going a fast walking speed and got complacent with letting the bike just monster truck everything ('20 Enduro, lol). The front tire got jammed into a rock and I did a slow motion stoppie, but the bike swung out to one side, the rear tire hit a tree about 5 ft off the ground and a branch was in just the right spot to shear off the valve stem. With the bike still on it's front wheel I stepped off the bike and removed it from the tree as now it's hanging by it's rear wheel. I thought it might be the sidewall but was surprised to see the valve stem gone.

    So now for certain rides I'll be carrying my spare tube again, but after this I'm certain to not need it for a few years.

  62. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeremy3220 View Post
    I'm starting to think this maybe the way to go for higher speed riding. It seems most EWS enduro racers go up in casing weight before adding inserts. From what I've gathered there's more enduro racers running DH tires without inserts than there are racers running lighter tires with inserts. Fabien Barrell talked about this recently in a podcast and basically said you're better off with the weight being part of the tire because inserts don't reinforce the tread area. I've thought the same thing for a while...an insert sitting down near the rim isn't going to do a whole lot to prevent the tread (side knobs) from deforming in corners. It might add some lateral stiffness to the tire and prevent the tire from rolling off the rim but I still feel the tread squirming in high speed corners. If you think about car tire design, the bulk of the reinforcement comes from the belts which sit directly under the tread. Adding sidewall reinforcement is a secondary concern to the direct dimensional stability of the tread.

    Inserts are great for getting comfort, traction, and support at moderate speeds but I'm not sure that's the way to go for high speed applications.
    The EWS racers fly around the world and only get, what 8 races a year, they can't risk not performing over a tire. I'll also add that inserting a tube in to a tire with an insert in the field, as far as I'm concerned, is darn near impossible.

    It's the same reason that Pro MX bikes get new wheels, new ignitions, new throttle cables, etc. every race and a new frame every other race, yet the Privateers run that stuff much longer. Professionals simply can't afford to have a $150 part wreck a multi-million dollar racing effort.

    They are also only timed going down, whereas most of us want to go our fastest in every direction.

    Oddly enough I use to slash tires often as a slow novice, but excluding tearing off knobs I haven't slashed a tire in years and I'm much faster now. Trail tires hold up great and roll well, but I do smash hard enough that I need the insert to not bash my wheels or have the tire roll off in the turns.

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    I went to order another set of Nubes for my new bike on the Endubike website and noticed they have a newer product on their page. Octa Mousse.

    https://youtu.be/k1DlpqupFa0

    https://octamousse.com/

    https://endubikes.com/categoria-producto/octa-mousse/

    One thing I noticed was how they say the compound is different, softer and slower rebound than the polyethylene round style (Nubes?)

    Attachment 1340293

    Attachment 1340291

  64. #64
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    I've been eyeing those Octa Mousse. I wonder if their shape really adds any benefit or it's a marketing scheme. The only real benefit I see that they describe on their website is for sealant fluid circulation.

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    I've got an extra set of 27.5 45mm Octa Mousse, NIB if anyone is interested. I accidentally ordered the wrong size.

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    Quote Originally Posted by slimphatty View Post
    I've been eyeing those Octa Mousse. I wonder if their shape really adds any benefit or it's a marketing scheme. The only real benefit I see that they describe on their website is for sealant fluid circulation.
    Just for those interested in vittoria airliner, I experienced poor sealant circulation. Even after adding more than normal the sealant had a hard time reaching the bead, and when I pinched, it was as if most of my sealant had dried up even though it was pretty fresh.

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    I've run cushcore's front and rear with EXO tires for over a year on my enduro bike, and cushcore XC's/EXO front and rear on my trail bike.

    I've been really liking both setups. The weight penalty on the regular Cushcores does suck, turns your 1000g exo's into 1300 tire, but I've been surprised how little its effected my climbing, it FEELs a little more sluggish, but I maintain the same pace as my friends with the same perceived energy output as before.

    Where I've felt they help the most is low grip loose conditions, I've dropped my assegai front to 17-18 psi for some enduro stages, knowing its a super loose low grip trail, the way it allows the tire to deform without folding is a huge benefit, I have a lot less sudden washouts in the front in those sketchy low grip conditions, its more a slow predictable washout that you can catch. Even if that trail happens to have a hardpack berm'd corner, you can still hit it hard, the tire might fold some, but you'll feel it fold then the cushcore catch it. For high grip trails where you need high pressures the benefit isnt as noticeable, its more a benefit in the front being able to run a little lower pressure still and get away with it.

    The XC's on a good pedaling trail bike, while definitely a noticeable improvement downhill, does make a more noticeable difference on climbs. Going from a 900/850g F/R tire setup that feels super light and accelerates super quick, to a now 1050/1000, does kill that quick accelerating light trail bike feel. However its still worth it for me because I still prioritize the downhills, and I have a feeling that sluggish feel doesnt necessarily mean it IS accelerating slower, you just dont get that snappy sensation.

    I think that smaller air volume in the tire is a big benefit too, as far as i understand you're basically starting at a lower pressure, so the tire conforms to small trail chatter much better, but once you get to mid sized more square edge hits, that smaller air chamber "ramps up" like a shock, and rides more like a higher pressure tire when it comes accross bigger hits. and thats what it feels like too.

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    Quote Originally Posted by slimat99 View Post
    Just for those interested in vittoria airliner, I experienced poor sealant circulation. Even after adding more than normal the sealant had a hard time reaching the bead, and when I pinched, it was as if most of my sealant had dried up even though it was pretty fresh.
    Which size airliner in what tire?

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    Quote Originally Posted by SA77 View Post
    I think that smaller air volume in the tire is a big benefit too, as far as i understand you're basically starting at a lower pressure, so the tire conforms to small trail chatter much better, but once you get to mid sized more square edge hits, that smaller air chamber "ramps up" like a shock, and rides more like a higher pressure tire when it comes accross bigger hits. and thats what it feels like too.
    I've heard people say this about Cushcore but I'm not sure that makes sense from a physics standpoint. I don't think there's enough of a change in air chamber size when a tire hits a bump. It would be one thing if the tire was being compressed around the entire circumference but hitting a bump deforms it in one spot with the rest of this large air volume remaining unchanged. Tires even stretch a bit which could further reduce the effect of volume reduction when impacting a bump.

  70. #70
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    Quote Originally Posted by GT87 View Post
    Which size airliner in what tire?

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    M

    Michelin 2.35 WR2, and maxxis 2.4 dhr, dhf 2.5

    All tires had poor circulation with the WR2 being a little worse than the other two. Another thing, I know all these companies say their insert doesn't absorb sealant and that's true, but it still coats them. Airliner is big, lots of coating going on. Between coating and poor circulation I found sealant to be of little use. Packing out that big ass pool noodle coated in Elmer's glue is fun! Seriously though. It's not a bad product. It does reduce pinches and rim impacts, it just has its flaws.

  71. #71
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    Quote Originally Posted by slimat99 View Post
    M

    Michelin 2.35 WR2, and maxxis 2.4 dhr, dhf 2.5

    All tires had poor circulation with the WR2 being a little worse than the other two. Another thing, I know all these companies say their insert doesn't absorb sealant and that's true, but it still coats them. Airliner is big, lots of coating going on. Between coating and poor circulation I found sealant to be of little use. Packing out that big ass pool noodle coated in Elmer's glue is fun! Seriously though. It's not a bad product. It does reduce pinches and rim impacts, it just has its flaws.
    Thanks for the feedback. Seems like you'd need twice the sealant in order to coat all the extra surface area and still have enough liquid left over to seal punctures. I usually always add sealant by breaking the bead instead of adding thru the valve, but this seems like a good reason to maintain that habit... the centripetal force should force the sealant out, but with a tight fitting insert it could get stuck... the groove in the airliner might make this worse by trapping sealant between the insert and rim.

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  72. #72
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    I use , or have used, Cushcore, Huck Norris and Vittoria Air liner.

    Currently I have double CC in on bike. In another, the Vittoria Air liner

    Huck offers the least protection but is lightest and easiest to install.
    Cushcore has more protection but is heaviest and hardest to install. I use this on my e-bike
    Vittoria sits in between. I use this on my daily driver

    I agree that additional sealant is helpful because of liner coating, but with a caveat.

    Stans seems to get consumed or dry up more quickly

    Lately I've been using Muc-off sealant which is much thicker than Stan's and doesn't dry as quickly. I've had really good results and will continue to use it.

    I don't believe the liner prevents sealant from getting where it needs to go. Make sure to add a good amount (I typically do 120-160 ml for initial setup on 2.5-2.8 tires) and shake it around to cover the sidewalls. I almost exclusively add sealant via the valve, as breaking the seal on a tire with a liner can be a PITA.

  73. #73
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    Quote Originally Posted by GT87 View Post
    Thanks for the feedback. Seems like you'd need twice the sealant in order to coat all the extra surface area and still have enough liquid left over to seal punctures. I usually always add sealant by breaking the bead instead of adding thru the valve, but this seems like a good reason to maintain that habit... the centripetal force should force the sealant out, but with a tight fitting insert it could get stuck... the groove in the airliner might make this worse by trapping sealant between the insert and rim.

    Sent from my moto g(7) power using Tapatalk
    yep, I added a little extra but clearly not enough to overcome coating and poor circulation. It's been my experience that sealant is only good for setting up tires and sealing pin pricks. I've been running tubeless since 08. Sealant has never sealed a pinch for me, and pinches are 99% of my flats. The other 1% are sidewall cuts or dent flats which sealant doesn't work for either. It's a tough sell for me to weigh down tires with copious quantities off goop. With airliner I actually had a hard time getting used tires to even set up. Not enough sealant was getting to the slightly stretched bead to set the tire up. Brand new tires I never had issues but when you're adding the weight of a dead cat, plus a bucket of glorified glitter glue that is compromised by said dead cat, tubeless with a proper two ply starts to look pretty good.

  74. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by slimat99 View Post
    yep, I added a little extra but clearly not enough to overcome coating and poor circulation. It's been my experience that sealant is only good for setting up tires and sealing pin pricks. I've been running tubeless since 08. Sealant has never sealed a pinch for me, and pinches are 99% of my flats. The other 1% are sidewall cuts or dent flats which sealant doesn't work for either. It's a tough sell for me to weigh down tires with copious quantities off goop. With airliner I actually had a hard time getting used tires to even set up. Not enough sealant was getting to the slightly stretched bead to set the tire up. Brand new tires I never had issues but when you're adding the weight of a dead cat, plus a bucket of glorified glitter glue that is compromised by said dead cat, tubeless with a proper two ply starts to look pretty good.
    Yeah, sealant isn't perfect, but what's the alternative? You'll still need sealant with a heavier casing, and then you're not only dealing with the extra weight but also the additional rolling resistance of the thick casing. And I've had good luck with sealing pinch flats using plugs, and then the sealant will seal it up. Obviously this doesn't apply to bugger cuts.

    Sent from my moto g(7) power using Tapatalk

  75. #75
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    I'm waiting for the last little bit of sealant to dry up in my Vittoria lined wheel.

    I installed it with a new tire a year ago and suffer traction loss really bad. I blamed it on the tire for a long time (was different than what it replaced).

    Reason for change was a pinched my tubeless 2.8" Rekon. Rim as dinged up pretty bad and tire had a little tear in the bead, obviously.

    Setup with the air liner is cake on a 2.8" tire. Removal on the other hand is more difficult.

    Anyway, the point is that the airliner is too big for plug tires, I think. At 15psi, a tire squeeze pinches the liner before I can tell even if the air pressure is adequate. Even pushing on the middle of the tire (tread), I can push to the insert.

    The ride is harsh as it's really just bouncing around on a liner, not air pressure.

    When sealant dries up I'll remove the liner and see how the bike rides. The plus tires are bouncy regardless, but with the liner always taking the hit to the ground it amplifies the bounce/hit.
    It shouldn't be much longer for it to dry up enough that I won't get a mess.

    I've had the liner in since about July last year. The bike was 7 months old then. I've forgotten what it feels like in stock form so I should be able to notice an instance change in ride quality if my theory is correct.

    Now that I understand the limits better about the plus tires, I know which trails not to beat up. I won't ride the chunky bits with as much aggression so I can protect my rim.

    Unfortunately the tire is about worn out now as well but I'll run it through the dry summer and not waste an expensive tire on dry pack.

  76. #76
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    Quote Originally Posted by GT87 View Post
    Yeah, sealant isn't perfect, but what's the alternative? You'll still need sealant with a heavier casing, and then you're not only dealing with the extra weight but also the additional rolling resistance of the thick casing. And I've had good luck with sealing pinch flats using plugs, and then the sealant will seal it up. Obviously this doesn't apply to bugger cuts.

    Sent from my moto g(7) power using Tapatalk
    There is no alternative. I wish dry tubeless had been refined. I could never get ust dry to work for me. I agree about plugs and sealant. I've had some success with that. If you can make the leak small enough sealant works great assuming it's not dried up to a ball which happens quick where I live. As far as rolling resistance with a heavier casing, I've found airliner feels more sluggish to me than a tubeless casing of similar weight. It's just so big you squish into it. Procore doesn't add much or any rolling resistance. There's certainly merit for some people. For me, unless I'm saving good weight and experiencing reliability, I'll take the ease of a beefed up casing even if there's a rolling resistance penalty.

  77. #77
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    Quote Originally Posted by slimat99 View Post
    There is no alternative. I wish dry tubeless had been refined. I could never get ust dry to work for me. I agree about plugs and sealant. I've had some success with that. If you can make the leak small enough sealant works great assuming it's not dried up to a ball which happens quick where I live. As far as rolling resistance with a heavier casing, I've found airliner feels more sluggish to me than a tubeless casing of similar weight. It's just so big you squish into it. Procore doesn't add much or any rolling resistance. There's certainly merit for some people. For me, unless I'm saving good weight and experiencing reliability, I'll take the ease of a beefed up casing even if there's a rolling resistance penalty.
    Dry tubeless was refined already, a long time ago... we added sealant. It's a big improvement.

    Your experience with the airliner confirms some of my suspicions. If it's so big that you squish into it when rolling, then that's not ideal. Part of the reason I'm really interested in that new pepi's insert. The shape should prevent that from happening.

    Sent from my moto g(7) power using Tapatalk

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