Tubeless Ready Bontrager Wheelset: Race, Race Lite, Race X Lite
Bontrager TLR Race, Race Lite, and Race X Lite wheelsets can offer advantages such as better flat prevention and lower tire pressure when riding. This in turn leads to better traction and a smoother ride.
(image courtesy of slowtwitch.com)
All the wheels can be run with standard tube tires, or tubeless with the TLR system. THey are virtually maintenance free, and because of the design of the TLR rim strips, there is a low weight penalty for tubes and tires at stock specifications.
There are two ways to go tubeless with the new wheels and tires. If you bought a Trek bike that was equipped with compatible Race, Race Lite, or Race X Lite wheels, Bontrager has a convenient TLR upgrade kit that includes everything you need to make the switch: tires, rim strips, valve stems, sealant, even a valve core removal tool.
If you're buying the wheels as an aftermarket upgrade, replacement wheelsets include the rim strips, valve stems, and internal cam skewers, meaning all you have to add are the tires and the sealant. And Bontrager has all new TLR sealant. It's formula is free of ammonia, a wide effective temperature range, and ability to seal up to 1/4" punctures. Made in the USA, and comparatively to some other sealants, requires less per tire to be effective. Bontrager recommends as little as .8 oz for 700c, 1.6oz for 27 and 1.7 for 29ers.
The Bontrager designed hubs on the RXL feature DT Swiss 240 star ratchet internals, with straight pull nail head spokes. 18 DT 14/17g bladed spokes hold the front wheel together, while 24 spokes grace the wheel with stacked drive side lacing for increased stiffness and power transfer. All the spokes are anchored to the 23mm wide rims with Alpina locking alloy nipples.
Bontrager says the Race X Lite is a performance road wheelset for the rider seeking the best in materials, class leading technologies and unparalleled wheel stability. They provide fast acceleratoin and durability for training.
Greg Kopecky of Slowtwitch.com says: "In a few words - it's all about the rim, baby"
He goes on to say, "these rims have a very unique internal shape and accompanying rim strip - and this is where the TLR part comes in. If you want to run standard tires with inner tubes, you are more than welcome to. Just use a standard rim tape, such as Velox cloth. Put on your favorite tires and tubes, and ride to your heart's content.
If you want to run tubeless, you use the Bontrager TLR plastic rim strip. This covers up all of the spoke holes completely and effectively converts the internal shape of the rim to Road Tubeless."
Once you're out on the road, the Race X Lite TLRs deliver great performance with the flat prevention and ride quality benefits of tubless coming as no-cost bonuses.
For now, this technology is reserved for only their aluminum wheels. Bontrager's has hinted at the possibility of bringing it to other wheels, such as their 50mm deep Aura 5, or even the Aeolus D3 carbon clinchers.