Tuesday, July 22, 2008


I need a good rant, something that really gets down to business with an issue. I was thinking this as I was driving home from Castlewood the other day. I have a responsibility to my readers, after all. I had just threaded some pretty decent singletrack in a very minimal amount of time. Schuck couldn't have paid me to let him ride away from me. I shredded him while on the phone with a client. With the exception of my friggin back tire losing air again, I would have had the perfect ride.

So there it is. Tubeless! I suck at bike maintenance, I know this. I take a lot of trouble from it. Just last night I rolled in to Touring Cyclist, as I did a couple months ago with the same creaking that I had...a couple months ago. Matt Grottoff (C Ryback) asked me a really stupid question: Is that the same sound it was making last time you came in? Well hell yeah? Man, Matt, I am really embarrased dude. Thanks Kankles for trying to hook me up. I have to have a meeting with my people on that bike.

I suck at bike maintenance. I was totally busted, and having him bring that up again...I was exposed. And it must have been painful for Ryback to attain and keep my wheel (he was on a 200 year old fixie) for the noise was so loud going up Henry Road, women and children were dropping to the ground holding their ears, writhing in pain. Injury to women and children or not, it was good riding with anyone from Team Seagal.

I suppose I don't even bother being embarrassed about it any more. Friends of mine should recognize the fact that I likely won't improve much and simply sneak in to my garage and fix my bikes for me, when I am not looking. That way, the world would be better and there will be no more "waiting for Pfremmer", ever.

Ah yes, tubeless. Mark ( or Cody) at Ballwin Cycles hooked me up (reluctantly) with the Cross Max's and warned me that there are not "really" any tubeless tires made for 29ers, other than pythons, which were quite expensive. But as I have learned, hanging around Thrasher one can learn a thing or two. Screw what the system says, go cheap, use Stan's, "git your ass on the tubeless bandwagon and lets ride you fat bastard". And that is what I did. And I have had like 40 flats since then, tenubeddymud. I have Stans on the floor of my garage, in my car, on my driveway, on my clothes. I spill the stuff whenever I try and re-Stan's (seed) my tires. I have not become "one" with this tubeless thing yet.

I have shown signs of improvement as of late, after watching Schuck actually talk to the tire that he was attempting to get sealed trailside in the 95 degree heat. I will now refer to him as the Tire Whisperer, because now I have gone a couple days without a flat, and this morning I had a clean pair of bibs folded nice and clean next to the pump on my garage floor. Strange.


Anonymous said...

running a regular "tubed type" tire as a stans/tubeless is flat out risky.

ploch, d-waye, breslin, etc flatted 50000 times in the last 2 years doing this.

it is just too rocky in our area for this.

for racing only it is light yet still risky. sidewalls are too thin.

bontrager dry x tr and python tr are the only options for you 29er guys. the bontrager dry x is the best of the 2. it has an armored casing and is still one of the lightest. same tires the lalonde bros use.


Craig said...

EP is way more expert than me, but I'd add a qualifier to his remarks:

"In some/many/most cases"

I've run 26 and 29 non-ust tires on non-ust rims for over 5 years with 99.99% success.

The 0.01% being times when my lazy/cheap azz neglected to properly inflate, top off Stans or I ran tires well beyond the time they should've been retired (punny).

Rider factors like size and riding style DEFINITELY factor in your recent issues.

Follow ep's advice and git sum dem 'tubeless ready' (tr) 29ers... better fer a big feller!

Anonymous said...

Ralph, you have to put the beer down while your topping up the Stan's.

But seriously, this is good information.

I just bought a new front tire (non UST), that I plan to run tubeless with Stan's on a non UST rim.

My riding style is way conservative, so hopefully I'll get some miles out of this experiment. Otherwise, right to the recycle bin.

Thanks for the info.


Ralph Pfremmer said...

Pirtle, thank you I am seeking out the two options. Thrasher makes his own tires out of his kids dental floss and chicken dung.

LC, to be honest, it has not been that bad, other than I am always sealing the damn things.


Boz said...

I'm running Schwalbe's on the bike and they have stayed seated just fine...except for the one I blew off the front rim during the C'Wood race for a DNF. Pirtle's right, you're running the risk that a non-ust will blow off the rim, but check Stan's website. They show you some of the tire brands you should avoid. I'm running two different sets of the crossmax rims and they are working right now. I'm getting ready to toss a set of Pythons I got from Breslin on there, so I'll let you know how they work. Drew Black ripped a sidewall on one, but it was on a rocky course.