Friday, June 08, 2012

Friday News And Views

Tubeless Brew: 

First of all, thanks for all of the comments on the post yesterday. Many of you seemed to be interested in what it was I was using for sealant. Even to the point of crying "blog foul!", which made me laugh.

Look, I was pretty loathe to reveal the "secret sauce", since the stuff wasn't developed by me. It was my good buddy MG's stuff which he worked real hard on making over years of experimentation. You just don't go handing out knowledge like that without asking.

Fortunately, if you need to know, MG popped in and graciously shared the secret to his brew in yesterday's comment section. Go there if you want to know. Thanks!


Yes, the gravel rides on Friday are still happening. Two weeks ago we got rained out, and last week I was out of town. I'm not out of town this week, and so I will be planning on meeting anyone of like mind at 5:30pm at the usual spot. 

I have a bit of a twist on the route I want to try out this time, so it will be something new for anyone that has already ridden this with me.

Expect to ride about 20-25 miles this go around. It is going to be a longer route with average rollers. Nothing crazy, but it is time to start picking up the mileage a bit now since the sun stays up pretty late these days.

Gravel Bikes:

Which leads me to a few comments about "gravel road bikes". First off, I have a couple things I need to get squared away here concerning bikes. I am resurrecting the Fargo Gen I bike, which is coming along slowly. I had grabbed the bar end shifters off it for the RetroShift levers I reviewed (here, and here) , and so the Fargo has no shifting levers! I also needed to do something about tires and wheels, so that was addressed. Finally I need to do something with a chain ring for the crankset. That should get squared away here real soon, and then I'll be using the bike for.......well, you'll just have to wait and see what I will be doing there.

Gettin it back together
Then I need to do a tubeless experiment, (more on that later), and a stem/bar swap on the old Raleigh with a crank swap as well, since this looks to become my dedicated single speed "skinny tired" gravel bike for awhile.

The Singular Gryphon will retain the fat tired single speed crown for now. (Actually, I don't see that ever changing, but you never know.)

Finally, there has been a lot of talk around about what a "gravel bike" is and even to the extent of considering what gravel roads are. (Really- there are different connotations and definitions depending upon where you live.) This ranges from mostly dirt roads to crushed rock of varying levels.

Why does this all matter? Because it will dictate what someone uses for a bicycle, and therefore what a "gravel road bike" is. Here in Iowa, it means one thing, while up in Southern Minnesota, it is something quite different. 

Interestingly, Salsa Cycles is teasing their new introductions and many are being brought out in the public eye at gravel road races this spring. Their take on what a "gravel road bike" is should only feed the discussion on this topic even further. I can't wait to see what they have cooked up.

Okay, that's all for today. Have a great weekend and take some pictures on your adventures this weekend!


MG said...

I have to admit, some of Salsa's new prototypes are pretty darn nice...

As for the formula, I appreciate the propriety. My goal was never to make money, rather to simply not have to deal with flat tires. I'm just glad we're there.

BTW, I set up a 38c Bontrager LT3 up tubeless last night with 'the juice', no sweat. It's holding 50psi in the bike room now, and has been since last night. That's not a tubeless tire... But I've run two others of the same model tubeless for more than 1000 miles. Pretty cool...

Man, too bad I'm not working in the bicycle industry, 'eh? I'd sure love to...

Charly Tri said...

Not to burst your bubble, but the "recipe" is almost exactly what Stan of Notubes was touting on MTBR way back in the late 90's before he even conceived of his company. He later would switch to an ammonia free version as ammonia can eat some tires. MBA would later repeat it in an article, giving him credit.

Guitar Ted said...

@Charly Tri: Almost only counts in Horse Shoes and hand grenades. ;>)

MG said...

Well, I understand how ammonia can affect un-anodized aluminum rims (it causes them to crack, particularly around the nipple seats), but in eight years and more than 15,000 miles, I've not had a single occurrence tire failure caused by ammonia in the sealant. In fact, the only tire failure I've had was a cut tire from sharp flint rock in the Dirty Kanza 200 a couple of years ago... That wasnt the sealant's fault.

But believe whatever you want, and use whatever you want, Charlie. I don't care.

Have a great weekend! It's gonna be fantastic riding weather...


MG said...

Oh, and I also didn't claim I wasn't influenced by any external sources... I did read that old issue of MBA way back when, and it did serve as somewhat of a genesis.

That said, I can use whatever I want, and this stuff still works the best for me. I'm sponsored by a shop that stocks Stan's, CaffeLatex, Bontrager SuperJuice and others, so I could get just about anything... But I don't need to. I have what I need. Cheap, easy, reliable...

Charly Tri said...

I am not sure if you read my post as being confrontational, but it wasn't meant to be. Also, I don't know the exact ratio Stan used, so I said "almost". Not hating, just stating.

Oh, and I think it was only the natural rubbered Conti tires that got eaten up. I think they since changed something that helps with that.

MG said...

Hey Charlie, No sweat... I probably got a bit defensive too, sorry about that. I think we're arguing more the same side of the point than different points anyway.

And you may be right on the Conti tires... I'm not a major user of Continental tires, so I've only tested a couple of 'cross models with my sealant. It worked fine in the time I used it, fwiw, but it was only for about a 3-month span.

Clearly, as the user base grows, so too will the knowledge base. But that said, there are already quite a few folks using this sealant under the radar, so within our network, there's a pretty good base of working knowledge already, as far as what works and what doesn't. It just hasn't been formalized in anywhere... Perhaps we should start a wiki or a "Getto Tubeless" Wikipedia page?