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Need help with Tubeless Conversion


Frank the Tank
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OK, so I bought myself a Stans 29'er conversion kit yesterday and after watching the video, started eagerly and with much confidence. I left my existing rim strip on, and installed Stans rim strip by stretching it evenly as per video. At this stage I noticed there were several narrow spots, but I couldn’t get it much better and continued mounting the tire and adding soapy water. I then pumped frantically (using a foot pomp), but with no success. I dismounted everything and after replacing, pumped even harder. Also tried a 16g CO2 bomb in the process.

 

An hour later…

 

At this stage I knew it must be the narrow spots that is causing the problem, so I took of my existing rim strip, added two layers of tape (that came with the kit), added back my existing rim strip and on top of that Stans rim strip. This did help a lot in getting rid of the narrow spots, and I regained some confidence. But alas, with tire back on and with soapy water, I couldn’t inflate it to as much as 0.1 psi. I went back re-doing everything a number of times.

 

An hour later…

 

I threw everything in the back of my car and raced to the nearest petrol station. With the air compressor I was able to inflate the tire somewhat, but as soon as I stopped inflating all the air was gone within a split second.

 

An hour later…

 

I went to bed highly irritated and wondering what else I can try. And to add salt to the wounds, Mrs MTB said softly “I told you it was not going to work”.

 

Help needed:

 

You will notice that I have not yet added any sealant – according to the video, you should at least be able to inflate the tire without sealant after which it will gradually lose air. I have therefore resisted adding the sealant as I believe the tire needs to seal better than what it currently does. Is this correct?

 

Is there anything else I can try? I don’t really want to take it to a bike shop as I would like to see how it is done. :unsure:

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What tyres and rims do you have?

 

Tubeless work best with the yellow rim tape and UST tyres, that 'conversion' brings mixed results.

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This also happened to me although I don't think the air leaked out of my tyre/rim as quick as yours from what you describe but it wasn't too long before my tyre was flat again. The idea to inflate the tyre before you add sealant is to make sure the tyre bead settles against the rim properly. I added the tyre sealant and shook and rolled the tyre as per the video and pretty soon all the air stopped leaking and the pressure held. In the end it's well worth the effort.

Edited by Pusher
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Frank - we are here to help you!! :D

 

Mrs MTB WILL NOT have the last say....

 

let's first see: UST tyres or not? Experience just found that UST ones works so much better (they have a beter beading for quicker seal)

You are correct in diagnosing those narrow spots where the rim strip are not catching the tyre...why? i don;t know...

 

Maybe try a ghetto conversion - where you use a 20 - 24inch tube cut in half...that will provide plenty of contact position (and no narrow strips).

I've been using this method and it is a 10min job to do! I do not even cut the stipr close to the rim anymore....so that one can easily re-use & re-seat the tyre in subsequent applications...

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It is actually easy, remove your old rimstrip it makes the layers to thick that is on the rim and the tyre may not seat properly. Clean the rim properly using spirits or clean green, disc brake cleaner works best, and leave it to dry properly. Now tape the rim, you need to pull hard on the tape trying to stretch(you wont) but that is the technique you need to use, two full loops will be enough. Now make a small hole were the valve is going to go through with a sharp object like a els or so. put on the rim strip ensuring that it cover the width of the rim. Put the tyre on with sealant in it, especially if you are not running UST tyres and inflate with a compressor. If you struggle to inflate it remove the core. Pump it up hard the first time and go ride. You should be fine

 

Hope this all makes sense :rolleyes:

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Ja - I agree with Sharkie. I reckon all those rim strips are getting in the way. Normally the yellow tape by itself on the rim will do the job.

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Ja - I agree with Sharkie. I reckon all those rim strips are getting in the way. Normally the yellow tape by itself on the rim will do the job.

Yes...nevermind the extra blerrie weight of those things...Yellow tape, stans valve...sealant and pomp :blush: . Happiness is

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Thanks for all the help guys. (Cassie, I have already bought the strips so might just as well use them.)

 

The reason why I have many layers is to get rid of the narrow spots - surely it will not work if the rim strip does not "go up the sides of the rim and seat under the bead lock" to quote the website directly?

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Thanks for all the help guys. (Cassie, I have already bought the strips so might just as well use them.)

 

The reason why I have many layers is to get rid of the narrow spots - surely it will not work if the rim strip does not "go up the sides of the rim and seat under the bead lock" to quote the website directly?

 

Just seal the spoke holes with the tape and you will be fine. No other strips required. I also had them, but sold them on the Hub as I had no use for them.

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When the rim strip is on the rim lift the rimstrip again, place your index finger underneath it and slowly and gently pull your finger through a full loop underneath the strip, don't pull to hard, your goal is to slightly stretch the strip

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Ahh the love of battling with the tubeless conversion.

 

You went wrong at step one,get a beer and then start, you gonna need it.

 

I have had it before where the rim strip actually went in between the rim and tyre preventing the tyre to seal. That might be something to look at, another one is look if there is sealant in the actual rim, that means the tape isn't sealing and the sealant is going everywhere, but this will be a slower leak than described.

 

I have gotten so "de m*er in" with tubeless systems. I eventually cleaned the rim, put only the yellow tape, CUT the rim strip around the valve, so the valve has about a 10 mm circular disc around it and then did the pumping up thing. Worked a charm, been riding it for 3 years now.

 

Oh and check by the valve, is the bead over the valve hole? meaning the air goes past the bead and escapes instead of into the tyre? Also a common mistake

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Frank - we are here to help you!! :D

 

Mrs MTB WILL NOT have the last say....

 

let's first see: UST tyres or not? Experience just found that UST ones works so much better (they have a beter beading for quicker seal)

You are correct in diagnosing those narrow spots where the rim strip are not catching the tyre...why? i don;t know...

 

Maybe try a ghetto conversion - where you use a 20 - 24inch tube cut in half...that will provide plenty of contact position (and no narrow strips).

I've been using this method and it is a 10min job to do! I do not even cut the stipr close to the rim anymore....so that one can easily re-use & re-seat the tyre in subsequent applications...

 

Agreed ,this is the best way to do it and works everytime as you get a continuous seal against your tyre/ valve and the rubber has a little give in it which creates a better seal.

If you can find a BMX tube with a removeable valve core this is ideal. You still need a few layers of rim tape i.m.o. to close the spoke holes and its better to use the nylon reinforced tape if you can, otherwise electrical tape will do.

You must use sealant. Approx 120 - 150ml / tire , besides you are actually not going to get the full benefit of any tubeless system if you ride without sealant.

For your first seating use a compressor and rotate the inflated tyre so that any leaks are gravity sealed with gunge .

Only trim the redundant tube off after you have inflated the tyre . When the tire has settled after a few days you will be able to use a hand pump.

It also helps to use a proper tubeless/ust ready tyre as the sidewalls and casing are designed for this and the bead has a little lip which creates a better seal.

I reckon this is the best conversion for non-ust type rims and I would only use the purpose made rim strips in preference to this system on a ust ready rim which has a lip designed to seal against the tyre.

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This all sounds like such a mission. I did not have nearly as much trouble with my J2KL rims strips with loose valves. I had them installed and my tyre inflated without sealant in under 15 min.and the Mrs was happy that they didn't cost a fortune. P.S J2KL come in 26er and 29er

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Have you had any luck yet? I couldn't gather from your explanation, but did you try using soap suds at the garage? That usually works for me - i put a bit of sunlight soap and water in a energade bottle (with a pop-up cap) and shake it. Then open the cap and squeeze the foam out onto the bead. Mind you, I'm not the best one to take advice from...I blew out my tyre twice this week trying to get it seated (there is latex EVERYWHERE!)

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