My slippery slope to tubeless road tires started with new wheels for my Black Mountain all road bike. To better enjoy the sumptuous ride of that bike, I went on the hunt for a strong, relatively lighter wheel set capable of handling rough roads at speed in remote country. I sought the balance between durability, comfort and weight that won't fold on me 40 miles from cell phone coverage. That led me to rims with a wider profile and higher spoke count. Enter the upstart H Plus Son Archetype rim: 23 mm wide, available drilled for 32 spokes, and tubeless ready. Wheel set upgrade done.
Now, for tires. Possessing a heightened bias toward flat prevention, I ran 40 mm Schwalbe Marathon Racers on those wheels for over a year, piling up over 5,000 miles, with but one flat. And that came at the very end, when I kept reverting to those over-worn tires after the performance of prospective replacements fell short. Then, Schwalbe announced an all-in commitment to tubeless technology, including tubeless tires for road and gravel. Although leery about the ride of a road tire filled with little knobs and lukewarm at best about tubeless, I ordered the 40 mm G-One.
|Up close and personal with the 40mm Schwalbe G-One.
Back to the Marathon Racers again? No way. The G-One is a noticeably softer ride, with greater control. Maybe it's the higher quality casing. Maybe the omnipresent knobs. I don't know. But the improved ride quality of the G-Ones officially retired the Marathon Racers.
But I'm not about to ride tires that drop their pressure load at the first sight of an Imperial goat head. So, I ditch my retro-grouch tubes and convert to tubeless via Stan.
|After kicking the tires, and the wheels, at the dusty Badlands and Buffalo Gap Grasslands proving grounds.
Flawless execution. A shake out 50 miles and then an all out 110 remote miles with no flats and nary a pressure drop. Off to a flying start.