Tubeless: UST rim + standard tire

Hey Lee,
If i have UST wheels, can i make a non ust tire tubeless? if so how?

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Hey John.

This works for some tires, but not all. You need:

– Your UST wheels with the valve stems installed.

– Tires with smooth beads. The beads can’t any ridges. Some WTB tires don’t work. I’ve had good luck with Maxxis and Specialized DH tires.

– Tire sealant. Stan’s, Slime, etc.

– An air compressor, air tank or air canister. The bigger and the higher pressure, the better.

— — —

1. Mount the tire almost all the way, except for a small section of bead.

2. Squirt sealant into the tire. No such thing as too much. Mount the rest of the bead.

3. Spread sealant on the bead itself. This will help create a seal.

4. Squash the tire all the way around the rim so the beads are close to the edge of the rim.

5. Hit it with compressed air.

— — —

If you’re lucky, the tire will seat right away. Fill it fast. Roll and bounce the tire until the sealant seals any leaks. Let it sit for a while. Double-check for leaks. Stir as needed. Rip.

If there’s a big leak along the bead, press that part of the tire into the rim — while rocking the air.

Another tip: Wrap a tie-down around the outside of the tire. This will push the beads closer to the edges of the rim.

Some tires/rims are easy. Others are royal pains.

Another approach: Make a rim liner out of a 20″ tube. That works on all rims. Stay tuned for that one.

Available at most hardware stores.

Poor man’s air compressor

With UST tires and rims, all I need is a floor pump. Super slick. But once my rims get ruined, or if I want to convert a standard tire, I need some extra air kung fu.

I bought a portable air canister for about $40. I fill it with my floor pump to about 80 psi. That takes around 400 strokes — enough to blow up one pump so far! Gotta watch the heat buildup. I could use the gas station, but where’s the fun in that?

This setup gives me enough air to seat persnickety tires, and I can take it anywhere. Slick.

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