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Latex tubes in carbon wheels
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I like my teeth and face, so I've opted not to run latex tubes in my carbon clincher wheels, even on race day. I know. What a chicken!

But with heat dissipation now relegated to brake discs (rather than rim brake tracks), are there any downsides/risks to running latex on modern disc brake carbon wheels?

I LOVE tubeless for training (and haven't gotten a single flat in 1000s of miles on GP5Ks), they do present a few challenges for racing (once we're racing again).
1) They're SO hard to mount/seat I'm 100% certain that I wouldn't be able to get a tube in my ENVEs. So if my bacon strip fails (and given my lack of flats, I don't have much experience/confidence in them), I'm toast. My day would be over.
2) It makes changing to a fresh set of race tires race week a huge PITA, borderline impossible really.
3) The bike I'm looking at buying (Shiv Disc) comes with Roval Rapide CLX wheels, which are not tubeless compatible but otherwise look awesome.
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Re: Latex tubes in carbon wheels [wintershade] [ In reply to ]
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wintershade wrote:
I like my teeth and face, so I've opted not to run latex tubes in my carbon clincher wheels, even on race day. I know. What a chicken!

But with heat dissipation now relegated to brake discs (rather than rim brake tracks), are there any downsides/risks to running latex on modern disc brake carbon wheels?

I LOVE tubeless for training (and haven't gotten a single flat in 1000s of miles on GP5Ks), they do present a few challenges for racing (once we're racing again).
1) They're SO hard to mount/seat I'm 100% certain that I wouldn't be able to get a tube in my ENVEs. So if my bacon strip fails (and given my lack of flats, I don't have much experience/confidence in them), I'm toast. My day would be over.
2) It makes changing to a fresh set of race tires race week a huge PITA, borderline impossible really.
3) The bike I'm looking at buying (Shiv Disc) comes with Roval Rapide CLX wheels, which are not tubeless compatible but otherwise look awesome.


huh, had no idea that wasn't advised. And here I was descending at 55mph in races with 808s and Latex. Oops lol
Last edited by: T2LV: Sep 8, 20 19:08
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Re: Latex tubes in carbon wheels [wintershade] [ In reply to ]
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Respectfully, I think your fears are/were unfounded. So many people here, including myself, have run latex tubes on carbon clinchers without any issues. I've raced in Tremblant 14 times now (70.3's and full IM's) all on latex, never an issue on that hilly course, and I've never had a single flat tire in training either in the past 8 years on latex. I've always used Conti GP4000IIS's and GP5000's with the pink Vittoria tubes.
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Re: Latex tubes in carbon wheels [wintershade] [ In reply to ]
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A whole bunch of my friends and I are going to disappointed we shouldn't have used latex tubes with our carbons rims and Conti 4000's the past few Ironmans we did.
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Re: Latex tubes in carbon wheels [wintershade] [ In reply to ]
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you’ll be fine, go ahead and run them. many of us have been running latex for years now with no issue. Like others said this is the first I’ve heard of any heat concern. I know the tubolitos have disc specific tubes for this reason but they are not latex

the world's still turning? >>>>>>> the world's still turning
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Re: Latex tubes in carbon wheels [wintershade] [ In reply to ]
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The "no latex" myth for carbon rims (even propagated by some wheel mfgs) was based on the fact that the brake surfaces on carbon rims can get hotter than Al rims. This obviously does not apply to disc brake wheels.

As the other posters have mentioned, there is ample/overwhelming anecdotal evidence that running latex tubes even in rim brake carbon wheels is not a problem.

ECMGN Therapy Silicon Valley:
Depression, Neurocognitive problems, Dementias (Testing and Evaluation), Trauma and PTSD, Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
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Re: Latex tubes in carbon wheels [wintershade] [ In reply to ]
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I converted one set of wheels to tubeless, and the tires went on just fine. 25mm GP5000TL on 21mm internal width rims. It was the same as any other tire change, other than having to remove the valves and add sealant after I seated the tires.

This isn’t directed to the OP, but if you bike (which is pretty much everyone here), you need to learn how to proficiently change a tire. My wife and her dainty hands can easily change tires, including remounting the tire without using a tire lever. If she can do it...
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Re: Latex tubes in carbon wheels [dktxracer] [ In reply to ]
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Thanks all. So the answer is latex is definitely fine with disc brake carbon clinchers (and was likely okay all along with rim brakes).

I don’t think anyone is suggesting we don’t need to know how to change our own tires. My comment is simply that it is undoubtedly more difficult to do so on tubeless ready wheel sets (with the center channel). And it’s a disgusting and difficult mess to try jam a tube in rim full of sealant. I’ve tried (to practice just in case it was necessary in a race) and it took 15 minutes and left my hands and arms covered in sticky latex goop. If, for example, it happened 20 miles into an Ironman, it would be pretty annoying to spend the rest of the day covered in sealant.
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Re: Latex tubes in carbon wheels [wintershade] [ In reply to ]
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Never had any issues with heat dissipation and carbon clinchers. Rode a 606 set up last year, and can assure you there was a lot of braking pressure on the carbon clincher rim from my lack of descent skills coming down Col De Vence (Newsflash: Florida doesn't really have a good place to practice long descents).

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Re: Latex tubes in carbon wheels [wintershade] [ In reply to ]
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I initially had a really hard time mounting tires into my Jet Blacks which are tubeless ready. Few things I found really helpful:

1. Really try to make sure the first tire bead on is sitting in center channel, not pushed out to far side of rim.
2. Make sure using the really thin tape from HED
3. Of course, helps if you have a tire that isn't just coming out of the package and has been pre stretched a little bit on another wheel
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Re: Latex tubes in carbon wheels [wintershade] [ In reply to ]
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The messiness of changing tubeless on the road is a big reason why I haven’t switched on my race wheels, which have latex tubes. I have many miles running tubeless on my gravel and mountain bikes, but I haven’t logged enough miles on my road tubeless setup to trust it just yet. When the tires on my race wheels need to be replaced, I plan to revisit the issue then.
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Re: Latex tubes in carbon wheels [wintershade] [ In reply to ]
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wintershade wrote:
(and was likely okay all along with rim brakes)
Latex tubes can experience heat-related failure (I've seen it happen), and carbon rims do tend to be worse at heat dissipation than aluminum. The question is how close to the margins your are. From the perspective of wheel manufacturers, they have to look at the situation from angles like "can we get sued if someone is really dragging their brakes while descending on a loaded touring bike in the Pyrenees?" A lot of riders are going to be a long ways from stressing the heat limits of a system, regardless of what sort of rims they're using.

(And some riders are going to be stressing the heat limits of a system even with butyl tubes, in the form of issues like tire blow-offs. Tandems have always been trouble in this regard: because they're more aerodynamically efficient than two single bikes, the amount of energy that the brakes need to dissipate is well over double what a single bike needs to deal with. Most tandems nowadays use disc brakes with large rotors, but back in the day it was common for tandems to be equipped with a drum brake on the rear wheel attached to a friction shifter, to be used as a drag brake.)
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Re: Latex tubes in carbon wheels [SBRcanuck] [ In reply to ]
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SBRcanuck wrote:
1. Really try to make sure the first tire bead on is sitting in center channel, not pushed out to far side of rim.

Just to be clear. I've read similar advice and not sure if it's me misreading or missing something.

It seems to me the two beads are, to all intents and purposes, independent. So get part of the 1st bead on and in the channel to get the rest of that bead on. Absolutely. But then it's done isn't it? In fact I do move the 1st bead out to the rim so that when I am getting the 2nd bead so the channel is as unobstructed as possible.

My method is get the 1st bead on and then out of the channel. Then start the 2nd bead opposite the valve so that you end up near the valve so that as much of the rest of that bead can be in the channel when you get that last bit on.

Is that what you meant or what am I missing?
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Re: Latex tubes in carbon wheels [HTupolev] [ In reply to ]
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HTupolev wrote:
wintershade wrote:
(and was likely okay all along with rim brakes)

Latex tubes can experience heat-related failure (I've seen it happen), and carbon rims do tend to be worse at heat dissipation than aluminum. The question is how close to the margins your are. From the perspective of wheel manufacturers, they have to look at the situation from angles like "can we get sued if someone is really dragging their brakes while descending on a loaded touring bike in the Pyrenees?" A lot of riders are going to be a long ways from stressing the heat limits of a system, regardless of what sort of rims they're using.

(And some riders are going to be stressing the heat limits of a system even with butyl tubes, in the form of issues like tire blow-offs. Tandems have always been trouble in this regard: because they're more aerodynamically efficient than two single bikes, the amount of energy that the brakes need to dissipate is well over double what a single bike needs to deal with. Most tandems nowadays use disc brakes with large rotors, but back in the day it was common for tandems to be equipped with a drum brake on the rear wheel attached to a friction shifter, to be used as a drag brake.)

As you noted, pretty much all rim brake systems can be overloaded to failure. Clinchers can overheat and blow off the rims. Tubulars can have the glue melt and roll off the rim. Carbon brake tracks can overheat and delaminate. No data, but anecdotally it's hard to believe that latex tube failure (vs butyl) is a more significant risk than those cited above. There are lots of folks (tens of thousands) running latex in carbon (training and racing), and a significant failure risk would become apparent pretty quickly.

ECMGN Therapy Silicon Valley:
Depression, Neurocognitive problems, Dementias (Testing and Evaluation), Trauma and PTSD, Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
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Re: Latex tubes in carbon wheels [Titanflexr] [ In reply to ]
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Titanflexr wrote:
HTupolev wrote:
wintershade wrote:
(and was likely okay all along with rim brakes)

Latex tubes can experience heat-related failure (I've seen it happen), and carbon rims do tend to be worse at heat dissipation than aluminum. The question is how close to the margins your are. From the perspective of wheel manufacturers, they have to look at the situation from angles like "can we get sued if someone is really dragging their brakes while descending on a loaded touring bike in the Pyrenees?" A lot of riders are going to be a long ways from stressing the heat limits of a system, regardless of what sort of rims they're using.

(And some riders are going to be stressing the heat limits of a system even with butyl tubes, in the form of issues like tire blow-offs. Tandems have always been trouble in this regard: because they're more aerodynamically efficient than two single bikes, the amount of energy that the brakes need to dissipate is well over double what a single bike needs to deal with. Most tandems nowadays use disc brakes with large rotors, but back in the day it was common for tandems to be equipped with a drum brake on the rear wheel attached to a friction shifter, to be used as a drag brake.)

As you noted, pretty much all rim brake systems can be overloaded to failure. Clinchers can overheat and blow off the rims. Tubulars can have the glue melt and roll off the rim. Carbon brake tracks can overheat and delaminate. No data, but anecdotally it's hard to believe that latex tube failure (vs butyl) is a more significant risk than those cited above. There are lots of folks (tens of thousands) running latex in carbon (training and racing), and a significant failure risk would become apparent pretty quickly.

Right, but to reset here, OP is talking about disc brakes. I can’t imagine how a disc brake could possibly overheat a latex tube.
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Re: Latex tubes in carbon wheels [DFW_Tri] [ In reply to ]
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DFW_Tri wrote:
Titanflexr wrote:
HTupolev wrote:
wintershade wrote:
(and was likely okay all along with rim brakes)

Latex tubes can experience heat-related failure (I've seen it happen), and carbon rims do tend to be worse at heat dissipation than aluminum. The question is how close to the margins your are. From the perspective of wheel manufacturers, they have to look at the situation from angles like "can we get sued if someone is really dragging their brakes while descending on a loaded touring bike in the Pyrenees?" A lot of riders are going to be a long ways from stressing the heat limits of a system, regardless of what sort of rims they're using.

(And some riders are going to be stressing the heat limits of a system even with butyl tubes, in the form of issues like tire blow-offs. Tandems have always been trouble in this regard: because they're more aerodynamically efficient than two single bikes, the amount of energy that the brakes need to dissipate is well over double what a single bike needs to deal with. Most tandems nowadays use disc brakes with large rotors, but back in the day it was common for tandems to be equipped with a drum brake on the rear wheel attached to a friction shifter, to be used as a drag brake.)


As you noted, pretty much all rim brake systems can be overloaded to failure. Clinchers can overheat and blow off the rims. Tubulars can have the glue melt and roll off the rim. Carbon brake tracks can overheat and delaminate. No data, but anecdotally it's hard to believe that latex tube failure (vs butyl) is a more significant risk than those cited above. There are lots of folks (tens of thousands) running latex in carbon (training and racing), and a significant failure risk would become apparent pretty quickly.


Right, but to reset here, OP is talking about disc brakes. I can’t imagine how a disc brake could possibly overheat a latex tube.

Agreed. Totally a mute point w/discs.

ECMGN Therapy Silicon Valley:
Depression, Neurocognitive problems, Dementias (Testing and Evaluation), Trauma and PTSD, Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
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Re: Latex tubes in carbon wheels [wintershade] [ In reply to ]
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wintershade wrote:
I like my teeth and face, so I've opted not to run latex tubes in my carbon clincher wheels, even on race day. I know. What a chicken!

But with heat dissipation now relegated to brake discs (rather than rim brake tracks), are there any downsides/risks to running latex on modern disc brake carbon wheels?

I LOVE tubeless for training (and haven't gotten a single flat in 1000s of miles on GP5Ks), they do present a few challenges for racing (once we're racing again).
1) They're SO hard to mount/seat I'm 100% certain that I wouldn't be able to get a tube in my ENVEs. So if my bacon strip fails (and given my lack of flats, I don't have much experience/confidence in them), I'm toast. My day would be over.
2) It makes changing to a fresh set of race tires race week a huge PITA, borderline impossible really.
3) The bike I'm looking at buying (Shiv Disc) comes with Roval Rapide CLX wheels, which are not tubeless compatible but otherwise look awesome.

Zero issue. Wife (cat 1) and I (cat 3), have both run latex in Reynolds Strike carbon clincher rim brake and Zipp 454/858 clincher rim brake with zero issues. Descended Mt. Lemmon from the tippy top on multiple occasions with no issue. Just another anecdote to add to the pile. Love latex.

Dr. Alex Harrison, USAT-1, USATF-3, CSCS ----- PhD in Sport Physiology, Author, Product Designer, Coach, Consultant
https://linktr.ee/DrAlexHarrison ----> Endurance Fueling Book, Macro Calculator, Customizable Lifting, & My Recent Article(s)
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Re: Latex tubes in carbon wheels [DrAlexHarrison] [ In reply to ]
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DrAlexHarrison wrote:
Zero issue. Wife (cat 1) and I (cat 3), have both run latex in Reynolds Strike carbon clincher rim brake and Zipp 454/858 clincher rim brake with zero issues. Descended Mt. Lemmon from the tippy top on multiple occasions with no issue. Just another anecdote to add to the pile. Love latex.


Du you brake going down Mt. Lemmon? (Ok, maybe down from the summit to summer haven)

Just a joke, we too (wife cat 1 and I cat 2 or master, both on the light side) use latex on carbon clincher (Zipp, Bontrager, Bikebeat, Campagnolo) for racing and never ever had problems from heating due to braking.
Last edited by: BergHugi: Sep 9, 20 19:51
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Re: Latex tubes in carbon wheels [BergHugi] [ In reply to ]
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BergHugi wrote:
DrAlexHarrison wrote:
Zero issue. Wife (cat 1) and I (cat 3), have both run latex in Reynolds Strike carbon clincher rim brake and Zipp 454/858 clincher rim brake with zero issues. Descended Mt. Lemmon from the tippy top on multiple occasions with no issue. Just another anecdote to add to the pile. Love latex.


Du you brake going down Mt. Lemmon? (Ok, maybe down from the summit to summer haven)

Just a joke, we too (wife cat 1 and I cat 2 or master, both on the light side) use latex on carbon clincher (Zipp, Bontrager, Bikebeat, Campagnolo) for racing and never ever had problems from heating due to braking.

Ha! Was wondering if anyone would call me out on that. :) Yes, just from summit to the ski resort at the bottom that I now presume is called summer haven. I'm not a local so unsure. I took a wild guess that the author of the post wasn't a Mt. Lemmon local and didn't need to know that for about 5000ft of descent you don't need to touch the brakes much, and would get the picture. :) :) I will say that the initial descent from the summit, I was warned by a disc brake user among us that I should probably sit up a bit and let the drag help slow me lest I risk heating up my rims and blowing a tube at speed. I weighed 215 pounds at the time and liked to ride fast so a potentially legitimate concern I suppose.

Dr. Alex Harrison, USAT-1, USATF-3, CSCS ----- PhD in Sport Physiology, Author, Product Designer, Coach, Consultant
https://linktr.ee/DrAlexHarrison ----> Endurance Fueling Book, Macro Calculator, Customizable Lifting, & My Recent Article(s)
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Re: Latex tubes in carbon wheels [wintershade] [ In reply to ]
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I think it really depends how you descend. A friend of mine has fried 3 carbon wheels, he descends Swiss mountains, on the brakes the whole way down... it makes me cringe. There is massive heat build up which cannot dissipate, hence the rims overheat and delaminate, I would assume if he used latex tires, they would also go pop. On the other hand, I descend, braking hard for the corners, but trying to minimise time on the brakes therefore allowing the heat to dissipate. At the bottom of a 3000ft descent, I can still touch my rims, yes they are warm, but not hot. I have no issue running latex tubes

As a manufacturer, you need to consider the worst case scenario, which is why they advise against latex tubes on carbon rims
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Re: Latex tubes in carbon wheels [mattsurf] [ In reply to ]
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Weight is going to be a huge factor here. Brakes are used to convert kinetic energy to heat. Kinetic energy is proportional to weight and the square of velocity. I currently weigh about 84kg. My brakes/rim will have to absorb 33% more energy compared to a 63kg rider making the same deceleration. That's a lot of extra heat and we don't generally use larger brake pads or larger rims for heavier riders so the temperature will be significantly higher. I also tend to descend reasonably fast. I'll happily let the speed go above 80km/h when the road isn't too technical. That should mean there's not much braking going on most of the time and drag limits my speed for the most part, but on long steep and twisty descents I'd be just a little nervous with latex, even though I use alloy rims, since I just don't know where the limit is but do know latex is more susceptible to heat damage. So I don't use latex on my rim brake road bike in the mountains. It may be an abundance of caution but I can live with that. i do use latex on my tri bike however.
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