Tubulars in Tucson

Everything about building wheels, glueing tubs, etc.
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by russianbear

I am looking to upgrade my wheels to something from Farsports and am stuck on if I should go tubular or clincher. I've been googling quite a bit to help me make my decision and I came across a post that made quite a bit of sense: daily (good conditions) riding tubulars will depend on where you typically ride. I'm moving to Tucson later this year so I'm curious if any locals would recommend to stay on clinchers because of road conditions, thorns etc. All the mountain descents around there don't seem to technical, so the over heating is a non issue.

On a more "you only live once" note, i've never ridden anything but heavy training alu clinchers(with latex tubes) so going to light tubulars would be the antithesis to the whole experience. Well I'm rambling now, thoughts?

by Weenie

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by eric

Even if the roads are awesome there's always the chance of a flat. No matter what you'll need to carry a glued spare tire and be able to change a tire on the road.

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by HammerTime2

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by kevhogaz

I live up in Phoenix, and I just set my tubs up with Orange Seal sealant. We have more of a nail, screw, sharp metal problem up here. I've been fortunate, in that I haven't had to test the sealant yet, but from what I read, it was worth a try. The guys over at Orange Seal were very helpful, and answered my 1000 questions!!

I tried Vittoria Pitstop once, with no luck at all. I had a screw go thru the sidewall, so I may have been trying to use it outside of it's intended use. It wouldn't seal at all.

Here's a link to a sealant test, a guy over on Slowtwitch did.
http://www.slowtwitch.com/Products/Thin ... _4155.html

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by russianbear

Thanks for the links guys. The goat thorn issue is what I was kind of afraid of regarding running tubs. I made up my mind about going with tubulars, but I will add sealant for sure now.

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by Calnago

Was down in Tucson for a week in early April for a cycling/bachelor party getaway. Never ridden there before so to be safe I took clinchers. Seemed around town had the worst potential for flats, but I never got any. Outside of town the roads were pretty good. We rode up Mount Lemmon, the Saguaro parks and some other rides and I was kinda wishing I had my tubulars. There were five of us and none of us got any flats while we were there. I take sealant with tubulars but only use it when and if I get a flat. If the tire has a lot of life left it will extend it. If it doesn't I chuck it. Also, I've had very good luck with Veloflex tubulars and usually wear them out before they flat. The advantage to not having sealant in them before hand is that you can then use the worn tire as a spare when it's done. If it had sealant in it, it's a toss into the dumpster. And I never experienced goatheads down there either, this time. Maybe it was the time of year but I rode across the country once in September years ago and goatheads were really a pain. Stick to everything like magnets until they work their way through for the puncture.

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by Zigmeister

Rode there in early May. Did the Gates Pass loop morning ride on Tuesday. Never rode in Tucson..rented a road bike.

The roads in Tucson are pretty crappy compared to Florida.

In/near the bike lane, there are about a million pebbles. Sounds like you are eating sugar pop rocks with all the snaps/pops riding over the surface due to the desert terrain/tiny rocks. Thought for sure a puncture was imminent.

And...every 20ft there is a crack in the pavement for whatever reason, and your a constantly going badump...badump...badump...drove me absolutely insane.

With that said, I rode clinchers, didn't have a flat or any problems...don't see why really it would be an issue over any other place. Just have a spare tub, some sealant, like vittoria pit stop, or pre-seal it with some tubular sealant available to help reduce chances. I personally like to ride clinchers on training rides and save my Tubs for race/or my local ride that goes right past my house one day of the week where I don't care if I get a flat, team car is just a mile/two away worst case.

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by madcow

There are plenty of guys here in Tucson that run tubulars daily. I think a good average is probably 3-4 flats per year.

On the other hand you're right that heating on descents isn't really an issue, roads like mt lemmon are usually descended without braking more than a couple of times over the 20 mile descent.

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by AGW

It's true that you'll get most, if any, flats from riding inside city limits. There are lots of pot holes, shards of glass or metal from fender benders that have been cleared away, bottles, etc. On the big perimeter rides like Silverbell, OST, Tanque Verde, the Foothills and Oro Valley, the roads are so well-maintained that you'll probably wish you had tubs just to enjoy them that much more. Cholla bulbs on the black tarmac are a frequent occurrence, but they're so easy to spot and avoid in the wide bike lanes that you won't even realize you're doing it after a while.

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by natefontaine

+1 for riding tubs in Tucson, Kenda Volare rear + Evo Corse front and Sprinter rear + Kenda Volare front have been holding up good this season, no flats, around 5000km between the two sets of wheels.

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