Riding on dodgy surfaces with an inner tube all too often results in time-consuming flats, usually at an inconvenient moment when it's either cold, getting dark or both.
The Tannus insert, called the Armour, uses a softer, lighter version of the Aither closed cell foam material as its solid tyres, but sits inside a conventional tyre and inner tube set-up. It protects against punctures and also allows the tube to be run at lower pressures, without the risk of a pinch flat.
The profile provides around 15mm of extra thickness at its apex. Twinned with the tyre’s tread, this gives around 20mm of puncture-proof padding at the circumference.
The side wall protection extends bead to bead and is around 2mm thick, so adding to protection from pinch flats and sidewall damage. Tannus reckons that tyre pressures can be dropped as low as 20psi. If you do get a flat, the Armour insert also provides the ability to run flat at lower speeds, to get you home.
The Armour insert is available in 700c wheel size, to fit inside tyres of 35mm to 40mm width. There are also 29 inch and 27.5 inch MTB versions.
Tubeless technology has become prevalent both on and off road. It relies on creating an airtight seal between the rim and the tyre beads. Not all tyres and rims are tubeless compatible and even if they are, not all combinations work effectively (although this is becoming less common as the technology evolves).
And sometimes, seating the tyre can be a real faff, the sealant is messy, it needs periodic topping up and often doesn’t seal larger punctures effectively. So a tubed option with extra puncture protection is a nice alternative.
In the UK, the Tannus Armour insert will be disturbed by Moore Large. Price is yet to be announced.
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Paul started writing for Cycling Weekly in 2015, covering cycling tech, new bikes and product testing. Since then, he’s reviewed hundreds of bikes and thousands of other pieces of cycling equipment for the magazine and the Cycling Weekly website.
He’s been cycling for a lot longer than that though and his travels by bike have taken him all around Europe and to California. He’s been riding gravel since before gravel bikes existed too, riding a cyclocross bike through the Chilterns and along the South Downs.
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