Say Goodbye to flats for good with the Tannus Lightweight Solid Road Tire

 

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Tannus Tire is a South Korean company who specializes in the manufacture of tubeless, solid tires. Since development of the company’s first prototype tire in 2004, Tannus has continued to improve their designs, with innovations such as a patented pin locking system, which safely holds their tires to a regular clincher rim.

Fast forward to February 2015, when Tannus is set to launch the company’s latest development, the Aither 1.1 road tire. The Aither 1.1, borrowing many design cues from the Aither 1.0 tire, features considerably less rolling resistance than the older model. The company claims rolling resistance of the Aither 1.1 closely compares to that of a regular pneumatic tire (tire and tube)…

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Tests against a competitor’s pneumatic road tire with identical power output reveal travel speed to be marginally slower, with a loss in speed of approximately one kilometer per hour. So why would you want a tire that is admittedly slower? Due to the fact that the Tannus Aither does not use air to hold it’s shape, it is impossible to get a flat. Realistically, we’re thinking most cyclists will prefer the performance of standard tires, but for those who hate to break out the pump on the rare occasion they’re riding that bike in the garage, the convenience could easily be appreciated.

The Tannus Aither series of tires are constructed from an ultra-light polymer, that contains no rubber, but with a similar pliability, in addition to being 100% puncture resistant. Thanks to the pin locking system, the tire can be safely attached to any standard clincher rim. Additionally, the new 1.1 tire is guaranteed by Tannus to last up to 6,000 miles (9,600 kilometres) without losing more than 1.5mm of tread depth. Skidding is not covered by the warranty, so behave yourselves!

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Tannus recommends the Aither 1.1 for training or commuting, sans the hassle of tire levers and pumps.

Specifications:

  • Weights start at 380 grams for the 700c x 23mm model.
  • One “inflation” rate of 100psi.
  • Four sizes – 700c x 23 (10 colors), 700c x 28 (black), 700c x 32 (black) and 26″ x 1.75″ (black).

Pricing:

  • Aither 1.1 – $US 185 / £119.80 a pair.
  • Aither 1.0 – $US 153 / £99 a pair.

Tannus Tire Company

Comments

37 thoughts on “Say Goodbye to flats for good with the Tannus Lightweight Solid Road Tire

  1. I’ll say this before all the hate comes in. Any product that gets a person out on a bike that might not otherwise ride is a great product. It takes away one more concern/hurdle/excuse that keeps some people from pulling the bike out of the garage.

  2. At first I thought well : that could be nice on a commuter road bike. That’s one less thing to worry about am I right? But then, you have 200$ tires on a bike you are likely to lock outside and if unlucky might get stolen… I’m not sure we’re quite ready to take such a risk. Otherwise, I’d be fine having that on a commuter if it meant not having to worry about punctures, ever.

  3. I agree these would be great for commuters and utility bicyclists. No need to worry about fixing flats on busy roads or in bad weather. No more worrying about getting your pump stolen while your bike is locked on the street.

  4. Ha, just had a discussion about solid tires today at work. For near perfect surface conditions comfort won’t be an issue, these tires might however be too comfortable for heavy riders and too hard for lighter riders for rougher roads.

  5. These would be awesome for training. Is there any more info on how they are installed? They are definitely a little expensive but if they take off the price will certainly come down.

    I think that 100 “psi” is a little high, especially given that you can’t pinch flat.

    The big question is how well they handle.

  6. I’ve ridden on cheapo no-flats, and they felt ok except that they seemed to fit the rims pretty loosely. It looks like these would be a lot better in that respect.

    I’ve talked to lots of people whose bikes just sit in the garage with flats, and they don’t know what to do with them (I recognize the lameness, but that’s where they’re at), and these would be awesome for them and their kids, if they could get over the cost and figure out how to put them on.

    Since we’ve got goatheads aplenty, I wouldn’t mind having a set to allow riding in certain areas that would be off limits with normal tires, as well as just not have to worry about it. Probably not recommended for mountain biking though!

  7. I dont see the commuter side of the justification. I have schwable marathon tires on my bike. I ride ti every day and they are about 4 or 5 years old now. I ride through everything i see, glass, gravel, branches, baby kittens…I cannot remember the last time I had a flat (looking for wood to knock on). I just dont see the need for some crazy expensive tires that will probably ride like poopoo compared to an air filled tire.

  8. Typical training tire is at least 250g. And then unless you make very picky selection the typical tube is around 100g? 380g if true is pretty reasonable. Over time I guess the weight goes down since there’s more tread to play with, and there’s of course the net investment of tubes and perhaps tires even.

    But that weight + the fixed “100psi” rating makes the 28’s questionable as training tires. Handling is another thing too.

  9. I like it, If it were a little cheaper I’d consider it for my road bike that I mostly use for training when I can’t go mountain biking. Pfs, do you not put a lot of miles on the bike? 4-5 years on a set of tires being used on the road seems like a long time. I’ve never had a pair last that long, I usually use Gatorskins. These would be an interesting option.

  10. Performance questions: how secure is that system under hard cornering? Will it hold up on a twisty descent?

    Let’s do a mini value-proposition analysis here:

    Problem: pneumatic tires are susceptible to flats. Solution: solid tires.

    User categories & needs: commuter – safe under all common commuting scenarios, maintenance free, works well under heavy loads, handles bad roads & junk well. Indoor trainer – long wearing, better value than other training tires. Roadie outside – safe under all common training scenarios, durable, competitive weight (compared to other training setups), competitive road feel.

    I’d say the product fits the indoor trainer market well. It’s close to fitting the commuter market if the safety component can be validated. It’s a less sure fit for the roadie market until the safety and ride quality component is thoroughly proven and well documented.

  11. I think I’d prefer to see this as a replacement for a tube rather than the whole tire. Then I can choose my tread style/grip level at my own discretion. It could also allow me to use a lighter tire than I might otherwise use (making up for the weight penalty).

  12. Without any hate, I would like to point out that solid tires preceded pneumatic tires on bicycles. The reason they were abandoned in favor of pneumatic tires is because if you hit a bump, that energy is transferred directly into the contact point, where as with a pneumatic tire, its absorbed over the entirety of the tire.

    Tubes are a pain to replace, but are even more so and cost a lot more.

  13. This product definitely gets around a major problem with versions that work as only inner tubes: Changing the tire! Tested for fun one such version and it took me ages plus blood, sweat and nearly tears to afterwards get the tire off the rim!! When the fit is good you really don’t have the possibility to deflate the tube to make good space for tire levers, and that’s when the things get complicated… Probably a major reason why the “tube” only made a very brief “pop” in the Finnish market ages ago.. no mechanic in their right mind probably wanted to work with them..

  14. oyoyo – I ride about 5 to 6 miles per day mostly on pavement. The marathons are a harder rubber than most so they tend to last a really long time unless you find a way to shred them. I’ve also ridden the bontrager hard case, and gator skin tires. they were fine but nowhere near as good as the marathons.

  15. KM is on the right track. While I realize these look like a great “no maintenance” alternative to tubes, please please please don’t use them on anything but a trainer. The problem most people don’t think of with solid cores or tires is the lack of impact absorption as compared to a standard pneumatic tire. They would probably be excellent on a stationary trainer where there is no impact happening, but when you ride this in the real world they will actually end up costing you more in up keep on the rest of your bike. I can’t tell you the number of hubs and head sets that I’ve seen totally destroyed by solid tires through out the years. It beats the hell out of all of the bearings on your bike as well as making it virtually impossible to keep a wheel true. This is, of course, leaving aside that they are a total nightmare to install and remove due to what KM brought up.

  16. It will be interesting to see if the “marginally slower” claim is true. Past examples of “flat proof” solid tires were so appallingly bad riding they disappeared from the market very quickly for that reason. Almost no one was willing to put up with them just to avoid flats.

    If these people have found the magic material, good for them, but I’m not holding my breath.

  17. Found this install video https://vimeo.com/118511433

    It’s… interesting? I guess there are little semi-rigid clips that go slide into holes in the tire and then clip between the beads. The tire itself appears to be flexible enough that there isn’t an issue of fitting it around the rim. http://www.tannus.com/2_tech/tech2_02.html

    I’d be interested if the price made sense compared to my tubeless training wheel setup and the grip is acceptable. I don’t need to ‘win’ the race down the hill but it’s nice to have a tire with some grip to spare if needed.

  18. good as training tires. The added effort is good for you and the fact that you can ride far without concern for a flat is awesome.

  19. @Dave B
    There are some pretty awful pneumatic tires, take a look at some of the cheapest, and they aren’t even skinwalls, they have thick rubber coated sidewalls, in addition to low TPI casings, semi-knobby treads, and questionable rubber compounds.

    Also, I can afford a lot or tires and tubes for $185 per wheel.

  20. @Saltymechanic–also the damage of even running hard-cased tires or thorn-resistant tubes. Or both. That being said, if modern technology could change this, as in the tweels we now see gaining popularity, it’s a good thing. To be honest, I do want to see video of someone clamping down hard on some hydro discs and still moving because the tire is sliding on the rim. What fun. Maybe there could be a bolt through the valve hole to hold them in place.

  21. Believe Saltymechanic!!!

    Save your money!!!

    We´ved tried these sort of “tires” some years ago – for exactly 300meters and it was the crappiest ride i ever had. And the cost of that was like 30Euro incl. shipment from Asia…

  22. I’d like to see how these corner and brake in the wet. I’ve ridden earlier generation urethane solid tires. Besides taking motorcycle tire levers to install, then rotating on the rim under extreme braking (exactly when you DON’T want them to rotate), they were very sketchy in the wet. The ride quality was terrible. All that said, this could be a completely new material and it could work just like they say. I, for one, am not holding my breath.

  23. @anonymous:

    Sure there are some pretty bad pneumatic tires but there are some very good ones too. AFAIK, there are NO good solid tires.

  24. Don’t you dare lock up the tires, you’ll have a mean flat spot.

    We had some of their older sample tires to test and we would just flat spot them down to the rim on our loading ramp behind the shop. Fun for about 10 minutes…no flats, though, just mean flat spots.

  25. I run Tannus tires on 2 of my bikes, best tires I’ve had, will no longer go with air.
    people who say they are rubbish clearly dont run them.

  26. I don’t think its fair to compare these to other solid tyres you tried years ago. time has moved on as has the technology. Whatever you think of these ‘solid’ tyres should really be saved until you have personally rode a pair.

    Flat spots from skidding, well try that on a pneumatic tyre. You’d be down to the tube in no time.

    When you know what your doing, fitting these tyres don’t take that long at all and no need for any levers to get the tyre onto the rim.
    I know someone who can put a 23 / 28 c tannus tyre onto a rim in 11secs. 32c tannus tyre onto the rim in 24secs. and can fully install a pair of wheels with them in 15 minutes including putting in all the pins to hold the wheel in place. Putting the pins in apparently take the longest time but is so simple.

  27. Aither 1.1 vs. Schwalbe Ultremo.
    Both tires 28 x 622
    Both tires approx. 100 psi.
    Similar tread
    Trek Madone 5.2
    Put 100 miles on the Aithers.
    Noticeable different in the rolling resistance of the Aither 1.1s.
    A difference of cruising at 12-14 mph vs 16-18 mph with the Schwalbe tire.
    They are not advertised as a performance tire but I was not expecting the amount of RR I felt with the Aithers.

  28. I can’t help but think that half of the ‘don’t go there’ comments are from bike retailers who just want your bike pump/tube/tyre money (and who can blame them, it’s their livelihood).

    But the proof is in the pudding. Lots of theoretical examples of terrible accidents befalling Tannus tyre users yet not one factual report of a tyre actually falling off the rim or damaging it.

    Should either of these things occur on my newly installed Tannus wheel, I shall be the first to report such a thing.

  29. I had tannus tyres installed on my bromptons hoping it would be the answer to my puncture problems, it turned out to be the biggest mistake ever. Although they stopped the issue of punctures, they were however extremely stiff and ultimately destroyed both of the wheel bearings within half a year of use. After chatting with the service guys, they explained how solid tyres were always an issue hence they never stock them. They also mentioned how brompton bike hire commissioned them to remove all solid tyres off their existing stock of bromptons as proof of all the issues caused. My advice is avoid these at all costs to save you the future hassle of changing new wheels.

  30. I think many of us are missing the point. I’ve been riding for about 45 years and what really annoys me about modern tubes is not flats but that they don’t hold pressure for more than a week. It would be great to have tyres that don’t need to be pumped up all the time

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