When it comes to tubeless tires, one of the most important components to consider is the rim tape. This thin strip of material is what separates the air inside the tire from the spoke holes in the rim. Without it, air would escape through the holes, causing the tire to lose pressure and potentially fail. But what width tubeless rim tape should you use?
The answer to that question depends on the width of your rims. Rim width is measured in millimeters (mm) and can vary greatly depending on the type of bike and riding you do. For example, a road bike rim may be as narrow as 15mm, while a mountain bike rim can be as wide as 35mm. So, when choosing a tubeless rim tape, it’s important to match the width of the tape to the width of the rim.
Why Width Matters
When it comes to tubeless tires, a tight seal is crucial. This is why the width of the rim tape is so important. If the tape is too narrow for the rim, it will not cover all the spoke holes, and air will escape. On the other hand, if the tape is too wide, it will be difficult to install and may not fit properly, creating a poor seal.
The right width of rim tape will not only ensure a tight seal but will also make installation easier. When the tape is the correct width, it will lay flush against the rim, making it easier to secure and preventing wrinkles or bubbles that could compromise the seal.
How to Measure Rim Width
Measuring the width of your rims is relatively simple. The first step is to remove the tire and tube from the rim. Then, measure the distance between the inside edges of the rim at the widest point. This measurement will give you the width of the rim in millimeters.
It’s important to note that some rims have a hook or lip at the edge that can make measuring the width more challenging. In this case, it’s best to measure the width at the point where the tire bead sits. This is the area where the tubeless rim tape will be applied, and it will give you the most accurate measurement.
Types of Tubeless Rim Tape
Once you have determined the width of your rims, it’s time to choose the right tubeless rim tape. There are two main types of tubeless rim tape: adhesive and non-adhesive.
Adhesive Tubeless Rim Tape
Adhesive tubeless rim tape is the most common type and is easy to install. It comes with a pre-applied adhesive on one side that sticks to the rim. This type of tape is available in a variety of widths and is often sold in rolls.
Non-Adhesive Tubeless Rim Tape
Non-adhesive tubeless rim tape is less common and is typically used for custom applications. This type of tape does not have an adhesive backing and must be secured to the rim using a separate adhesive or sealant. It is available in a limited range of widths and is often sold in pre-cut strips.
Which Type of Tubeless Rim Tape is Best?
Both types of tubeless rim tape have their advantages and disadvantages. Adhesive tubeless rim tape is easy to install, but it can be challenging to remove if you need to make repairs or switch out the tape. Non-adhesive tubeless rim tape is more versatile, but it can be difficult to install and may not provide as tight of a seal.
Ultimately, the best type of tubeless rim tape for you will depend on your needs and preferences. If you’re looking for a simple solution that is easy to install, adhesive tubeless rim tape is the way to go. However, if you want more flexibility and want to use a different sealant or adhesive, non-adhesive tubeless rim tape may be the better choice.
Benefits Of Width Tubeless Rim Tape
- Improved rolling resistance: Width tubeless rim tape provides a more secure seal between the tire and rim, reducing the amount of air leakage and improving rolling resistance.
- Increased puncture protection: By creating a seal between the tire and rim, width tubeless rim tape helps prevent air from escaping if the tire is punctured, reducing the risk of a flat tire.
- Better weight distribution: Width tubeless rim tape allows for a more even distribution of weight across the wheel, improving handling and stability.
- Reduced tire wear: Because width tubeless rim tape creates a tight seal between the tire and rim, it reduces the amount of friction between the two, reducing tire wear and increasing tire life.
- Better ride quality: Width tubeless rim tape helps to create a more stable and comfortable ride by reducing vibrations and road noise.
- Easy to install: Width tubeless rim tape is easy to install and can be done quickly, making it a convenient option for both professional and recreational riders.
- Cost-effective: Width tubeless rim tape is a cost-effective solution for those looking to improve their riding experience without breaking the bank.
How To Pick Tubeless Rim Tape
The width of tubeless rim tape is an important factor to consider when setting up tubeless tires. The correct width of tape will ensure a tight seal and make installation easier. It’s important to measure the width of your rims and choose the appropriate width of tubeless rim tape. Adhesive tubeless rim tape is the most common and easiest to install, but non-adhesive tubeless rim tape can provide more flexibility. Ultimately, the best choice will depend on your needs and preferences. Remember, with the right tubeless rim tape; you’ll have a safe and smooth ride on your bike.