Tubeless wheels without tape- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Tubeless wheels without tape

    What's the verdict on tubeless wheels that don't have spoke holes in the rim bed? I like the idea of no tape and just a hole for the valve. Sounds like it would result in less air loss and tape complications.


    Tubeless wheels without tape-enduro-wheelset-5-1000x1000.jpg

    Tubeless wheels without tape-enduro-wheelset-6-1000x1000.jpg

  2. #2
    bike tester
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    what happens down the line when you need to change a nipple?

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by syl3 View Post
    what happens down the line when you need to change a nipple?
    You fish it in through the valve hole using a short piece of high-ten spoke and a magnet. It's as much of a PITA as it sounds like.

  4. #4
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    Yep it is a pita fishing the nipples through. Rims that use molded rim strips eliminate tape faff/failures and are easier to deal with when building or replacing spokes/nips. I like the Bontrager rims/strips and some of the similar ENVE rims and strips.
    Do the math.

  5. #5
    damned rocks...
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    I have them, and I like them because I don't have to worry about tape job, and if I'm losing air it's either the tire (99.99%) or the valve core/stem (0.01%).
    Quote Originally Posted by syl3 View Post
    what happens down the line when you need to change a nipple?
    You remove the valve, then you remove de old nipple, then you install the new nipple.
    But, yes. They need more work, and unless you are willing to do it yourself you may be out of luck to find a wheel builder willing to work on them.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by syl3 View Post
    what happens down the line when you need to change a nipple?
    This thread isn't about breaking up with one's girlfriend.

  7. #7
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    And the sound of a washer or nipple bouncing around in the rim will drive you F&*()ing Bonkers!

  8. #8
    Hitching a ride
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    I've always skipped them because I prefer to build my wheels with a tool on the top of the nipple.

  9. #9
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    Never thought of the service after purchase but good points. I'm trying to imagine how you'd actually build the wheels and replace a spoke/nipple after the fact. Couldn't find a video on YouTube... anyone have a link showing how it's done?

  10. #10
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    Post #3 above describes it. You put a short piece of magnetic spoke, or specific nubbin that threads into the nipple, drop it in the rim through the valve hole, then try to fish it around using a rare earth magnet outside the rim. The spoke piece needs to be short so that you can get it to pull through the hole. Then you gotta grab the nipple flats with pliers, unscrew the magnetic piece, then try to get the nipple started on the spoke without dropping it back in the rim. Fun. A little disc with a set screw that would fit over the nipple and hold it and allow you to turn it would help facilitate that. IDK if such a thing exists but it would be straightforward to fabricate. I've only replaced a few spokes but if I had to build a wheel like this or do it more routinely, I'd make that tool.
    Do the math.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lone Rager View Post
    Post #3 above describes it. You put a short piece of magnetic spoke, or specific nubbin that threads into the nipple, drop it in the rim through the valve hole, then try to fish it around using a rare earth magnet outside the rim. The spoke piece needs to be short so that you can get it to pull through the hole. Then you gotta grab the nipple flats with pliers, unscrew the magnetic piece, then try to get the nipple started on the spoke without dropping it back in the rim. Fun. A little disc with a set screw that would fit over the nipple and hold it and allow you to turn it would help facilitate that. IDK if such a thing exists but it would be straightforward to fabricate. I've only replaced a few spokes but if I had to build a wheel like this or do it more routinely, I'd make that tool.
    Great description, thank you.

  12. #12
    BOOM goes the dynamite!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Forest Rider View Post
    This thread isn't about breaking up with one's girlfriend.
    Spend enough time out in the shed "fishing for nipples" and it's bound to happen - unless she's in on the fun.


    (From my own experience, getting nips out of a regular rim is enough of a PITA that I wrote off using UST rims. I'd still use one if it were already built and cheap enough, but starting from scratch no way. I've had very few probs with tape when properly applied.)
    :nono: :thumbsup:

  13. #13
    since 4/10/2009
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    I've had 2 UST wheelsets in the past and they were both different.

    The Mavic one was the least fiddly of the bunch, but it still had its limitations. It had proprietary nipples that threaded directly into the rim.

    I had a DT Swiss Tricon wheelset that was a nightmare. The whole thing used a bunch of proprietary parts and proprietary, expensive tools (it cost the shop $70 for the tool kit at their cost), AND the spokes were locked in place with a thread locker that required heat (which didn't always free up, even with a head gun).

    At this point, I'm all for a system with the least amount of complication. And even if rim tape isn't perfect and can leak air sometimes, it's still way less complicated than the UST stuff I've dealt with in the past, and less of a pain than fishing nipples through the rim cavity.

  14. #14
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    ^^^ I forgot about all the Mavics I worked on with their aluminum spokes and splined aluminum nipples that thread into the rim with left hand thread so that they tighten the same direction as normal nipples that thread onto the spokes. They were all road wheels and none of those were set up tubeless.
    Do the math.

  15. #15
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    You're basically trading an easily solved hassle for a much more frustrating one. Tape isn't that difficult and is pretty dang reliable. Learning the nuances of tape is much more appealing from where I sit.

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