Epic 38's Tubeless or Not?

I have just bought a pair of secondhand virtually as new wheels with Vapour Ceramic hubs. The rear bearings are toast so will change those. But can someone advise how to tell quickly if the wheels I have are tubeless compatible or not. I think not as the rim shape looks to be the older shape. Is this an obvious way to tell the difference.

Many thanks

Hey @GDS968 , Congratulations on your new EPIC 38s! Good job for knowing that the previous version of the Epic 38s weren’t tubeless compatible, but the current version is.

There are a few ways you can identify them.

  1. You can post a photo of the rim here, showing the tire bead hook, and I’ll let you know.

  2. In the non-tubeless version of the rim, rim bed (where the rim strip sits), is pretty much flat.

In the tubeless version it has two shoulder bumps that run along the rim. Of course, the real difference is in the shape of the tire hook on the rim, but that’s a bit hard to distinguish visually, if you aren’t super familiar with it. Here is what the tubeless version looks like.

Let me know if that helps! Enjoy your new wheels!!

Cheers James

Was really hoping that they were the tubeless versions but pretty sure they are not when getting them. I run tubeless on another set of aluminium wheels and the ride in my opinion is better than tubed for sure. The 38’s are still a great buy though so looking forward to using them.


Ever tried latex tubes?

No James, does it make a difference?

Yes, latex tubes behave differently than normal butyl tubes.

They have a totally different ride quality, and lower rolling resistance. Just be aware that they are easy to pop when installing, and the you have to put air in them every ride because the air escapes faster than butyl. Give them a try for fun.

Also keep in mind that if you’re looking for the flat protection of tubeless, you can get a bit of that by putting tubeless sealant inside of your normal tubes via the presta valve. A syringe and some latex tubing is one easy way to get the sealant into the valve.

Those are just some options to get some of the benefit that you might have been looking for with a tubeless setup.

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Hey James,
You mention using sealant. I’m a huge fan of running sealant in my butyl tube clincher wheels and tubular Toykyowheels. Everyone will have their favorite sealant (mine is Orange Seal) and there are non-biased comparisons that might help people decide. Stan’s is a fine product too as are a few others but the thing to remember about all sealants is that at some point preventative maintenance must be performed to maintain the sealant performance. PM on tubeless is easy, tubes is tougher, and tubular are very troublesome but given the cost of tubulars it is well worth the effort.