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Tubeless Wheel Issues

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5/15/2020 1:08 AM

I’ve been wanting to do the tubeless set up this week. Long story short with the old tires..lol..I ended up buying a set of Maxxis tires (Assegai/DHR2) for my DT Swiss M1900 wheels. Wrapped them nicely (one wrap) with gorilla tape and got the bead to seat. Easy enough.

My buddy and I sprayed around with soapy water around the wheel and it bubbles on a few spokes AND the lip where the wheel joins on one wheel.

Are the wheels pretty much shot? Is it worth trying a second wrap of gorilla tape? If I added the sealant, would this seal those leaks? I bought/installed tubes today so I can ride again, but wondering what Vital-brain thinks
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5/15/2020 6:27 AM

Either more tape or google 'ghetto tubeless split tube method'. That seals any rim.

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5/15/2020 6:57 AM

The leakage at the rim bead will likely fill when you add sealant. The bubbles at the nipples is more of a problem, indicating that air is getting under the tape and so will sealant.

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5/15/2020 8:43 AM

Big Bird wrote:

The leakage at the rim bead will likely fill when you add sealant. The bubbles at the nipples is more of a problem, indicating that air is getting under the tape and so will sealant.

I agree. I would recommend thoroughly cleaning and re-taping the rim. ("More tape" is absolutely not a solution.) The tape you use should span from bead to bead on the rim. Use a single layer, overlapping at the valve hole--I like to start 1-2 spoke holes before the valve and finish 1-2 spoke holes past the valve. You should be pulling the tape taut as you go and ensuring it is centered on the rim. Once you have your tape in place, it's important to seat the tape using a tire and tube. Mount a tire and tube and inflate to at least normal riding pressure, making sure the beads snap into place properly. Leave that inflated for at least 15 minutes. I often go longer; you can sometimes get away with shorter but why rush? Doing it right the first time will save you from future headaches. Then deflate, pull the tube out, put your tubeless valve in, add sealant, and air it up. Bounce and shake the wheel to distribute the sealant. If there's an initial bit of hissing that stops as soon as the sealant gets distributed, you'll be fine. If you hear continued hissing, or you observe sealant bubbling out of spoke holes, not fine. If that happens, you've either taped poorly, or damaged the tape while changing the tire, or maybe the rim was never tubeless compatible to begin with. (Some rims that aren't officially tubeless compatible will work, while others won't. I haven't looked up your model of rim to check.)

Too many people rush the taping itself or don't seat the tape before adding sealant. If any of that sealant gets under the tape, it'll prevent the tape from adhering properly. So take your time and do a really good job with that part.

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5/15/2020 8:43 AM
Edited Date/Time: 5/15/2020 8:43 AM

Gorilla Tape has texture which grips the bead if the tire gets muscled onto the rim. Remove the tire and you'll find rolled edges.


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5/15/2020 8:56 AM

What Big Bird said, and make sure your rim bed is super clean before you apply the tape and make sure tape is fully compressed down. What width is the tape in comparison to the rim? Your pics show why it is important to use soapy water during the install, good job on not skipping that step especially for a first timer.

The leaking at the rim seam is questionable also, what condition is the rim in, has it seen some hard hits?

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5/15/2020 9:19 AM

Big Bird wrote:

The leakage at the rim bead will likely fill when you add sealant. The bubbles at the nipples is more of a problem, indicating that air is getting under the tape and so will sealant.

anotherbikerguy wrote:

I agree. I would recommend thoroughly cleaning and re-taping the rim. ("More tape" is absolutely not a solution.) The tape you use should span from bead to bead on the rim. Use a single layer, overlapping at the valve hole--I like to start 1-2 spoke holes before the valve and finish 1-2 spoke holes past the valve. You should be pulling the tape taut as you go and ensuring it is centered on the rim. Once you have your tape in place, it's important to seat the tape using a tire and tube. Mount a tire and tube and inflate to at least normal riding pressure, making sure the beads snap into place properly. Leave that inflated for at least 15 minutes. I often go longer; you can sometimes get away with shorter but why rush? Doing it right the first time will save you from future headaches. Then deflate, pull the tube out, put your tubeless valve in, add sealant, and air it up. Bounce and shake the wheel to distribute the sealant. If there's an initial bit of hissing that stops as soon as the sealant gets distributed, you'll be fine. If you hear continued hissing, or you observe sealant bubbling out of spoke holes, not fine. If that happens, you've either taped poorly, or damaged the tape while changing the tire, or maybe the rim was never tubeless compatible to begin with. (Some rims that aren't officially tubeless compatible will work, while others won't. I haven't looked up your model of rim to check.)

Too many people rush the taping itself or don't seat the tape before adding sealant. If any of that sealant gets under the tape, it'll prevent the tape from adhering properly. So take your time and do a really good job with that part.

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I can assure you it wasn’t a rushed job wrapping the rim. I scrubbed the entire gap including the inner walls with alcohol and a new toothbrush. The tape had no rolls and was very centered around the perimeter. I’ve never heard of seating the tape tho 🤔 the tape still *looked* good yesterday when I put the tubes in (no harsh edges) but obviously it isn’t. They are DT Swiss M1900 wheels
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5/15/2020 9:49 AM

Sesame Seed wrote:

Gorilla Tape has texture which grips the bead if the tire gets muscled onto the rim. Remove the tire and you'll find rolled edges.


That is very understandable considering the tape texture, but we didn’t really muscle the tire. I put new tubes and the old tires back on yesterday and the tape looked good (although obviously leaking)

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5/15/2020 10:02 AM
Edited Date/Time: 5/15/2020 10:11 AM

Scrub wrote:

What Big Bird said, and make sure your rim bed is super clean before you apply the tape and make sure tape is fully compressed down. What width is the tape in comparison to the rim? Your pics show why it is important to use soapy water during the install, good job on not skipping that step especially for a first timer.

The leaking at the rim seam is questionable also, what condition is the rim in, has it seen some hard hits?

The rim bed was as clean as I could get it for sure. I used 1” wide gorilla tape as pictured in response to Big Bird. The rim looks to be in good condition, but they are second hand. The previous owner’s care was questionable tho after seeing Flubber on the inner tire, and a 27.5“ tube on a 29er Lol

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5/15/2020 3:26 PM

Scrub wrote:

What Big Bird said, and make sure your rim bed is super clean before you apply the tape and make sure tape is fully compressed down. What width is the tape in comparison to the rim? Your pics show why it is important to use soapy water during the install, good job on not skipping that step especially for a first timer.

The leaking at the rim seam is questionable also, what condition is the rim in, has it seen some hard hits?

Kelz87 wrote:

The rim bed was as clean as I could get it for sure. I used 1” wide gorilla tape as pictured in response to Big Bird. The rim looks to be in good condition, but they are second hand. The previous owner’s care was questionable tho after seeing Flubber on the inner tire, and a 27.5“ tube on a 29er Lol

That may the hidden reason why the previous owner had them for sale, they would leak. If you started all over again, get some Gorilla gel glue or a super glue product apply avery thin coat (don't overdue it) over the seam on the bed of the rim. Let that cure. Now before you apply the first piece of tape, cut the corners so its rounded on the end with no square edges. Roll the tape on and press down completely every 6-10", once you've over lapped the valve hole do the same cut as the first. Cut the corners off. Those square ends on the tape have a tendency to "roll up".

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5/15/2020 4:16 PM

what does the hole you cut in the tape to install the valve look like? does the valve have a nice rubber foot thats sealing well in the valve hole? it may be getting inside the rim from there and going out the rim other places.

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5/15/2020 10:36 PM

rockchomper wrote:

what does the hole you cut in the tape to install the valve look like? does the valve have a nice rubber foot thats sealing well in the valve hole? it may be getting inside the rim from there and going out the rim other places.

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Interesting. I did put a piece of gorilla tape over one of the leaking spikes and it still leaked. I cut a very small “X” in the hole to get the tip of the valve in, and then pressed it thru snuggly. Here’s the valves. I’m not sure how deep they seated tbh
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5/17/2020 2:15 PM

Just buy dt Swiss or Schwalbe rim tape and it will be fine, gorilla is ok if your stuck but it can be problematic, years ago it used to work better but I think they changed something with it. With DT/Schwalbe tape you can tape a rim and air it up and get going within minutes.

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5/17/2020 2:47 PM

Craig_Nelson wrote:

Just buy dt Swiss or Schwalbe rim tape and it will be fine, gorilla is ok if your stuck but it can be problematic, years ago it used to work better but I think they changed something with it. With DT/Schwalbe tape you can tape a rim and air it up and get going within minutes.

I might try that. I’m thinking about double wrapping the gorilla tape first tho since I have plenty of it. The local bike shop told me they always do 2 wraps

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5/17/2020 3:01 PM

Craig_Nelson wrote:

Just buy dt Swiss or Schwalbe rim tape and it will be fine, gorilla is ok if your stuck but it can be problematic, years ago it used to work better but I think they changed something with it. With DT/Schwalbe tape you can tape a rim and air it up and get going within minutes.

Kelz87 wrote:

I might try that. I’m thinking about double wrapping the gorilla tape first tho since I have plenty of it. The local bike shop told me they always do 2 wraps

I hate to disagree with your local shop, but I have never, ever found double-wrapping to lead to better results. If the first layer of tape isn't properly adhered to the rim, the second layer won't help. And if the first layer is adhered properly, the second layer is unnecessary.

Used to play a game in the shop when replacing tubeless tape--with the wheel mounted in the truing stand, start walking backwards holding the end of the old tape and see how far you can get. One time I walked all the way across the room because somebody had triple-wrapped their rim with Stan's tape. And guess what--there was sealant underneath.

Tubeless set-up can be frustrating as hell when it doesn't go right. I hope you find a solution soon!

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5/17/2020 3:58 PM

Craig_Nelson wrote:

Just buy dt Swiss or Schwalbe rim tape and it will be fine, gorilla is ok if your stuck but it can be problematic, years ago it used to work better but I think they changed something with it. With DT/Schwalbe tape you can tape a rim and air it up and get going within minutes.

Kelz87 wrote:

I might try that. I’m thinking about double wrapping the gorilla tape first tho since I have plenty of it. The local bike shop told me they always do 2 wraps

anotherbikerguy wrote:

I hate to disagree with your local shop, but I have never, ever found double-wrapping to lead to better results. If the first layer of tape isn't properly adhered to the rim, the second layer won't help. And if the first layer is adhered properly, the second layer is unnecessary.

Used to play a game in the shop when replacing tubeless tape--with the wheel mounted in the truing stand, start walking backwards holding the end of the old tape and see how far you can get. One time I walked all the way across the room because somebody had triple-wrapped their rim with Stan's tape. And guess what--there was sealant underneath.

Tubeless set-up can be frustrating as hell when it doesn't go right. I hope you find a solution soon!

Ha thanks man, I appreciate it..it would be very frustrating except that my neighbor and I both like to tinker around the garage. The original tires had sealant gummed all over the bead and we scrubbed them for maybe 45min and the tires had leaks all over the sidewalls. Got new tires, seated them and they leaked out the spokes 🙄

I need to have the bike serviced, I may just see if they’ll do it but I don’t like being defeated!

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5/18/2020 8:53 AM

anotherbikerguy wrote:

I hate to disagree with your local shop, but I have never, ever found double-wrapping to lead to better results. If the first layer of tape isn't properly adhered to the rim, the second layer won't help. And if the first layer is adhered properly, the second layer is unnecessary.

Used to play a game in the shop when replacing tubeless tape--with the wheel mounted in the truing stand, start walking backwards holding the end of the old tape and see how far you can get. One time I walked all the way across the room because somebody had triple-wrapped their rim with Stan's tape. And guess what--there was sealant underneath.

Tubeless set-up can be frustrating as hell when it doesn't go right. I hope you find a solution soon!

Double taping was beneficial with some rim/tire combos a few years ago, just to remedy a loose bead and get the tire to air up the first time.

It really isn't necessary anymore as brands have got tubeless stuff more dialed in.

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5/18/2020 3:26 PM

Skerby wrote:

Double taping was beneficial with some rim/tire combos a few years ago, just to remedy a loose bead and get the tire to air up the first time.

It really isn't necessary anymore as brands have got tubeless stuff more dialed in.

Fair point. That's a scenario I haven't personally encountered, but I didn't start doing lots of tubeless setups and repairs until just a few years ago, so perhaps it was somewhat before my time. I can see how a second layer might be helpful in that case.

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5/18/2020 5:52 PM

Out of curiosity, how did you scrub the rim clean? Just wondering if water got in the spoke nipples and is being pushed out by the pressure.

Did the tire lose air overnight?

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5/18/2020 5:53 PM
Edited Date/Time: 5/18/2020 5:53 PM

Or is it sealant seeping out?

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5/18/2020 7:38 PM

mwolpin wrote:

Out of curiosity, how did you scrub the rim clean? Just wondering if water got in the spoke nipples and is being pushed out by the pressure.

Did the tire lose air overnight?

I just dipped a toothbrush in some alcohol and scrubbed the whole channel from wall to wall. It definitely wasn’t saturated enough to come thru the spokes, but it’s a valid thought!

I mounted the tires the next day so it was definitely dry. We never put the sealant in since they didn’t hold air tho. Maybe it would’ve helped? But I think the spokes leaked more than they should

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5/18/2020 11:43 PM

If you install the tires in a room that's already inflated to 25 psi the rims won't leak.

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5/19/2020 3:18 PM
Edited Date/Time: 5/19/2020 3:19 PM

TEAMROBOT wrote:

If you install the tires in a room that's already inflated to 25 psi the rims won't leak.

...unless you run 28 psi.


Man, I hate all things pneumatic. Tubes, tubeless, whatever. If it involves holding air inside it, I'm cursed and it never works for me. The other day, I tried (again) to tape up my wheels and go tubeless. I almost got it to work but the front tire was leaking slowly - about 15 psi in an hour - so I made the decision to put the tube back in and try again later. Wouldn't you know? I went to ride the next day and the tire was flat, even with a tube. FML.

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5/19/2020 3:48 PM

Well I dropped my bike off at the local shop yesterday to freshen it up and asked them to set up the tires

Rode the hardtail yesterday and my buddy got a big thorn in his tire (which sealed because he’s tubeless). Hopefully they get it figured out because we’re trying to make a trip to Sedona this weekend

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5/22/2020 4:42 PM

M1900 rims are 30 mm inner width? If so 1 inch gorilla tape is too narrow (25 mm). Go for wider tape I’d say. Stans do a 33 mm tape.

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5/22/2020 11:59 PM

tavaenga wrote:

M1900 rims are 30 mm inner width? If so 1 inch gorilla tape is too narrow (25 mm). Go for wider tape I’d say. Stans do a 33 mm tape.

Tbh, I don’t know the width but they are not very wide. The tape covered from rim-wall to rim-wall so I think it wasn’t an issue

They local bike shop was able to get them setup tubeless and I didn’t even think to ask about it! Already got one ride on them and they’re holding air. We are in Sedona this weekend so the timing was great

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5/23/2020 11:21 AM

I just got a new set of enduro 305's and rode them for a few days but yesterday they started leaking. I can only hear air coming out near one spoke. Any ideas?

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5/23/2020 9:07 PM

bstat918 wrote:

I just got a new set of enduro 305's and rode them for a few days but yesterday they started leaking. I can only hear air coming out near one spoke. Any ideas?

Did you install the tires? If so, you may have nicked the tape with the tire lever.

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5/28/2020 8:50 AM

tavaenga wrote:

M1900 rims are 30 mm inner width? If so 1 inch gorilla tape is too narrow (25 mm). Go for wider tape I’d say. Stans do a 33 mm tape.

So if my rims are 27mm IW then the Stan’s 27mm tape I have is not big enough??

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5/28/2020 2:22 PM

Jon_Angieri wrote:

So if my rims are 27mm IW then the Stan’s 27mm tape I have is not big enough??

I’d say Stans 30mm tape would be ideal. This is from Stans FAQ: Which width tape should I use?

“The widths of our tape are selected with our rims in mind. Generally, we recommend tape that is 1-2mm wider than the internal width of your rim to account for the drop channel.“

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