Stan’s the Man: Tubeless Carbon Rims and Fat Bike Wheel Prototype

I dropped in on Stan’s No Tubes at Interbike Wednesday and got a sneak peak at the latest from the company: carbon rims and a new fat bike wheel prototype.

Many riders know Stan’s for their tubeless conversion kits, rim tape, and tire sealant but the company also sells a line of lightweight wheels that’s quickly gaining devoted followers. Now the company is producing its first carbon wheelset called the ZTR Valor that should be priced around $1900 once they’re released. The rims feature Stan’s Bead Socket technology which results in lower sidewalls (and lower weights) than many rims on the market today.

If you’re itching to get these wheels on your bike, take a number. The manufacturing process for these new wheels is said to produce 5-6 wheel sets per day right now so it will be a while before we see the ZTR Valors in wide availability. Surprisingly, carbon rims are built using a handmade process, even in the age of mass production, and therefore require a good deal of labor to produce.

In addition to carbon wheels, Stan’s also had a prototype fat bike rim on display. The rim features almost zero sidewall thanks to the fact that fat bike tires tend to insulate the rim from dings on the trail. Unlike many of the fat bike rims we’ve seen, Stan’s prototype didn’t feature weight-saving cut-outs yet the overall weight remains competitive thanks to the ultra-low sidewalls.

Tubeless tires seem like a natural fit for many fat bike applications given the high weight and cost of large volume tubes. I asked if the company has any recommendations on how much sealant to use with a tubeless fat bike set-up but it sounds like they’re still working that out in testing. No release date has been set for the fat bike rims yet.

Stan’s NoTubes continues to push the tubeless envelope with new carbon rims and now tubeless fat bike wheels. It seems the company won’t rest until inner tubes have been eliminated everywhere.