Bontrager Mustang 29
What is the issue with Bontrager Tubeless Mountain bike wheels?
I have been riding on my Trek X-Caliber 29er mountain bike for a couple of years now (I bought the bike in July 2014). I have a review of the bike in a couple of postings here. Since then I have had some interesting (not so pleasant) experience with the wheels and inner tubes on the bike.
After one year of riding, I started getting flats / tube punctures on a regular basis. I even reached a point at time when I was getting one per week (mostly weekend riding). That was rather unusual, but I decided that I need to learn to patch tubes fast as I would discover the flat as the Murphy Law goes, always right before a bike ride on a Saturday morning….
So after several months, both my front a rear tubes were a like a quilt 🙂 – not a happy situation for real. Then things escalated. A month ago, I reached a point where on a Saturday morning I patched both the front and rear tubes of my bike, and assembled the wheels. I was really displeased when the front wheel started losing air before I even put it back on the bike.
That was the proverbial straw that broke the camel’s back – I knew something was wrong with the rims as after I carefully inspected the insides of the tires, I could not find any sharp object that may have act as something that would puncture the tires.
At that point in time, I jumped in my SUV with the wheels of the Trek bike in my trunk and drove off to the Bike Shop.
To give credit where it is due, the maintenance person at the Austin Bicycle Sport Shop immediately identified the problem – the spokes of the wheels were sticking too much into the rim of the wheels. Based on his assessment the wheels needed some additional tape to cover the ends of the spokes so they do not poke on the inner tube.
Lessons learned: If you are buying tubeless ready wheels, and you are planning to use inner tubes, make sure you have enough coverage over the spoke ends on the rims to make sure they are not going to be puncturing the inner tubes…!