Thursday, December 30, 2010

Sam Hill runs innertubes

Being a dedicated internet nerd, I've seen this photo of Sam Hill's wrecked bike at Fort Bill a million times. There were 65 comments on pinkbike talking about whether or not DT rims are strong enough for Downhill, but no one realized the most interesting part of this photo:

Sam Hill runs innertubes.

I've been running tubeless for two years in my race wheels. No flats so far, and they are much lighter. I could feel the wheels moving more freely over bumps, and my suspension felt less dead. Then again, I never had any flats with tubes in my practice wheels, either. Additionally, there were always little wet spots around the bead of my tubeless race tires from burping in my runs. Never was a problem, but it obviously could become one.

Let's review:

Lower mass=lower moment of inertia=more responsive to bumps=better bump absorption
Less likely to flat? Maybe?
Cooler/more ballin
But harder to fiddle with or set up in a hurry or change tires
Less sidewall support from tubes in sidewall, so more likely to fold over in corners
Burp air in hard corners

Simpler and quicker to work with
Stiffer in corners
More likely to flat?
No burps

I remember a poll from, yes, pinkbike, where they interviewed all the riders at World Champs in Mount Sainte Anne to see what type of equipment they ran. The link is here:

93% of the riders were running tubes. NINETY THREE PERCENT! That means that tubeless is basically an endangered species at the World Cup level.

Time for me to reconsider tubes for my race wheels? Feel free to leave a comment, but remember that robots are smarter than you, so I don't really care what you have to say. This post is more a public service to the incompetent humans.


IDIOT said...

decreases rolling resistance, no pinch or puncture flats, more better. sam hill also runs flats, and is a sellout, does that mean we all should? he also wears ugly kits, should we? lets all consult pinkbike for how we set up our bikes! GREAT IDEA! HAIL CANADA!

RiverCity-fixie said...

I have a tubeless setup but I put industrial strength duct tape on the sidewall & rim area and run inert helium gas in the tire before i race. I also race DH with a ski mask on......

Tammy said...

i like turtles

VERG said...

robots don't need tubes