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Old 07-07-2011, 11:02 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Sealing spoke rims for tubeless tires

On a previous bike with spoke rims, I sealed the spokes with 3m5200 quick drying marine sealer so I could run tubeless tires. It worked well but messy applying the sealer. I was wondering if there was something else that could be used to seal the spokes.
Also, are there places that seal and true spoke rims? I think my 99 Fltcu rims could use a little truing.
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Old 07-07-2011, 03:20 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Voldog;
I wouldn't use 5200 on the spokes. That stuff is just below welding, adherence wise. If you get the wheels trued, they won't be able to turn the nipples.
I'm figuring you have stock wheels. Use the rubber strip that covers the spoke nipples.
Any good indy should be able to true the wheels.
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Old 07-08-2011, 12:26 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NJ Rider View Post
Voldog;
I wouldn't use 5200 on the spokes. That stuff is just below welding, adherence wise. If you get the wheels trued, they won't be able to turn the nipples.
Agreed... And even if you could turn the nipples, doing so when truing the wheel could break the seal and cause a leak.


Quote:
Originally Posted by NJ Rider View Post
I'm figuring you have stock wheels. Use the rubber strip that covers the spoke nipples.
The rubber strip on stock wheels will not seal the wheel properly. As the wheel spins, then rubber strip will stretch out due to centrifugal force and leak. So your tire pressure will be fine when stopped. But after a long ride your tire will slowly deflate.
Happened to a buddy of mine when we were on a 500+ mile ride. After around 150 miles his front wheel was 5 lbs low. Had to fill up to proper pressure at every gas stop. Pretty annoying for him and everyone else on the ride. At our destination, put a tube in the rim at a local shop and had no problems on the ride back.


Quote:
Originally Posted by NJ Rider View Post
Any good indy should be able to true the wheels.
Agreed... If not, they will be able to tell you where to go.


Personally, I wouldn't run tubeless on a spoked rim. Especially the front rim. Too hard to seal it properly and if you hit a pothole and dent the front rim you've got a blowout on your hands. I wouldn't be sitting here today if I didn't run a tube in my front rim. Hit a pothole at 75 mph about 4 years ago and dented the stock rim so bad I could touch the inner tube with my pinky once I stopped. If it wasn't for the tube, I would have gone down and who knows...
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Old 07-08-2011, 12:51 AM   #4 (permalink)
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If you want to run tubless tires buy a set of wheels that are designed for tubless tires, too much at risk in this area to be trying to design something of you're own. If memory serves me right several years ago Harley offered a laced wheel for tubeless tires, I very well could be wrong about this but it was short lived so don't know if they had problems with it or just wasn't a big seller.
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Old 07-08-2011, 04:28 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Want Spokes Run Tubes with your tire ... Why the Spoke Wheel is gone now on the FXR ..




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Old 07-08-2011, 07:27 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I agree with pigrider spoke wheels need to be trued....and I do mine evey time a tire comes off the rim if you add sealer to the rim after it throws off the balance if you turn the nipples after the rim is trued, you break the seal .....dumbest thing I have read on this forum yet ! other then Harley saying they dont have a over-heating problem or a cam tensioner problem !

whats the big deal about running a tube ? if it was a good IDEA.....Somebody would have done it by now!

I have been collecting Bikes 46 yrs had over 50 at one time .....got that # down to 14 now....not one mag wheel in the bunch......tubes and spokes rule!

Last edited by 59panhead; 07-08-2011 at 07:32 AM.
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Old 07-08-2011, 03:31 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Petrock;
I wondered about putting a tube in a tubless (cast) rim on a motorcycle. A month or so ago I bought 9 spoke (stock wheel chromed) rims for my SG, and toyed with the idea of using a tube simply as an extra margin of safety. Guess I'm gonna do it now. With the expense of tires, rotors, bolts and such, what's another $35?
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Old 07-08-2011, 03:50 PM   #8 (permalink)
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FXDRYDR is reading this now saying WTF is this? FXDRYDR is reading this now saying WTF is this?
Why not just run a tube like they were designed for?
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Old 07-11-2011, 08:54 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I've been running tubeless on spoke rims since 2006, lot's of other folks have too. I've been using the fast cure 3m 5200, it works. I've yet to have a problem. I wasn't asking if I should use 5200, I was asking if there was anything better.
When I seal the spokes, I don't do it individually. I put a coating on the entire spoke area, from one side to the other. I make sure I get all the oil out of the wheel before I apply the coating. With the entire area sealed, and a spoke is turned, it is still sealed because the entire area is sealed. This process takes a little while and like I said can get messy but works very well.
I don't argue the point about high speed pot holes but that's true with any tubeless tire.
By the way, balancing is not a problem because I used dyna beads to balance the tire, stays in balance regardless of what's going on with the wheel. And no, the beads don't get stuck in the 5200, the 5200 is on the inner part of the wheel, the dyna beads on the outer.

Last edited by Voldog; 07-11-2011 at 08:58 AM.
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Old 07-11-2011, 03:53 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I've been running tubeless tires on both of my bikes for years. I tour by myself and was always worried about getting a flat in BFE. I did the procedure myself using instructions from another fellow who had put 40,000 miles on his with no problems.

I just now wrote up the complete instructions and when I went to submit it, I had evidently timed out. Too bad. I'm not about to do that again. If someone can tell me how to write a long submission without getting timed out...or another way of accomplishing that, I'll try again.

By the way, the product I used was Dow Corning Silicone II Aluminum and Metal formulation. Got it at Lowes. I think it's used for gutters and such.
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Old 07-11-2011, 04:00 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Me again. The reason I wanted tubeless tires is that supposedly they tend to go flat at a slower rate than tube tires. The tube evidently tends to tear and deflate faster. And also, fixing a flat on the rear tire of a softail with a tube in the middle of western Texas on a nice warm August day is not my idea of a good time.
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Old 07-12-2011, 08:37 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lastinclass View Post
Me again. The reason I wanted tubeless tires is that supposedly they tend to go flat at a slower rate than tube tires. The tube evidently tends to tear and deflate faster. And also, fixing a flat on the rear tire of a softail with a tube in the middle of western Texas on a nice warm August day is not my idea of a good time.
Lastinclass, I sent you a pm.
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Old 07-12-2011, 10:26 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lastinclass View Post
I just now wrote up the complete instructions and when I went to submit it, I had evidently timed out. Too bad. I'm not about to do that again. If someone can tell me how to write a long submission without getting timed out...or another way of accomplishing that, I'll try again.
I usually do the write up in Word (or something similar) and then when I'm finished I'll copy and paste it in the reply section on the forum. Then submit!
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Old 07-14-2011, 08:14 PM   #14 (permalink)
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O.K. I think I have this thing figured out. Below is a link to the instructions on how to seal wire (laced) wheels. I've done this on my springer classic and a metric scoot. Put touring miles on both bikes with no problems. Also have had no problems with balancing.

http://www.gadgetjq.com/tww.htm
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Old 07-15-2011, 08:24 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by lastinclass View Post
O.K. I think I have this thing figured out. Below is a link to the instructions on how to seal wire (laced) wheels. I've done this on my springer classic and a metric scoot. Put touring miles on both bikes with no problems. Also have had no problems with balancing.

http://www.gadgetjq.com/tww.htm
thanks for the write-up. I think I'll go that route instead of the 3m5200.
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