Which tyres - splits or tubeless?

Submitted: Monday, Apr 21, 2008 at 13:38
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I am planning a Troopie trip taking in the Oodnadatta, Old Andado, Tanami tracks, then Gibb River Road and some of its side tracks, then on around the Pilbara and home via Rudall River NP, Gary Junction etc.
I have a choice of using either (narrow) splits or wider tubeless A/Ts. Interested to hear what those familiar with these tracks think would be the better choice?
Thanks in advance,
J and V
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Reply By: Member - Footloose - Monday, Apr 21, 2008 at 13:47

Monday, Apr 21, 2008 at 13:47
I assume that by the wider tyres you mean 235's or simiilar?
I'd go for the tubeless tyres every time. I'd also carry a couple of tubes in case.
The tubeless don't suffer from a host of problems that tubed ones do, and are easier to repair (minor stakes etc). Plus they take longer to go down so are relatively "safer".
The only time I'd consider tubed tyres would be if travelling cross country (no tracks). I'd then invest in some seriously thick sidewalled ones.
AnswerID: 299616

Reply By: Member -Signman - Monday, Apr 21, 2008 at 13:50

Monday, Apr 21, 2008 at 13:50
If I were doing that trip (yes- I'm envious again) I'd have no probs. using one piece rims with tubeless tyres.
We've been on most of the proposed roads with tubeless- and (in my opinion) with correct pressures and dodging the big rocks, you should have no probs.

AnswerID: 299618

Reply By: Member -Signman - Monday, Apr 21, 2008 at 13:53

Monday, Apr 21, 2008 at 13:53
By the way- do you know Peter & Corrie from down your way??
White Troopy, rear 'tent' like yours, do a bit of prospecting ??

AnswerID: 299619

Reply By: Member - bungarra (WA) - Monday, Apr 21, 2008 at 15:47

Monday, Apr 21, 2008 at 15:47

We have done the Rudall River NP several times over the years both with splits (Dunlops Road Trek's) .....earlier in the piece and more recently with tubless ....BFG all terrains.

Also did the GRR (western end) last year and on up to the Mitchell Falls on tubless BFG's

Never had an issue with either....I now prefer tubeless ....mainly because if I need to run low low presuures at times then I have less to fear of them running off the rim or spinning a tit off the tube ....and have just fitted BFG to the Landcruiser for the GRR and offshoots for this year

I always carry some tyre patches and tubes just in case, along with the plugs of course..so far touch wood!...it has been the case of me helping others with tyre problems........that statement might haunt me this trip now!

If I was going seriously off road and making tracks I might consider those MRF tyres...I have no knowlege of them other than what is posted on here and elswhere at times


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Reply By: Member - Davoe (Yalgoo) - Monday, Apr 21, 2008 at 16:33

Monday, Apr 21, 2008 at 16:33
if running crossply tyres stick with the splits, if running radials mount them on one peice
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Reply By: splits - Monday, Apr 21, 2008 at 17:00

Monday, Apr 21, 2008 at 17:00

Both types of wheels will do the job but no matter which ones you choose, make sure you have the knowledge, equipment and maybe even the physical strength to get the tyres off and back onto the wheels.

A puncture on a split rim will mean having to remove the tyre to fix it but splits are designed to make the removal of heavy tyres fairly easy.

A puncture in a tubeless tyre can often be temporarily repaired with an externally fitted plug but if you have to remove the tyre, they can be very difficult for many people.

A punctured split will usually deflate quickly and that can create problems in some situations. A tubeless may just develop a slow leak and this may make things a lot easier by enabling you to get to the next town before having to repair it. It can also lead to the destruction of the tyre if you don't know you are slowing loosing air. As the pressure slowly drops, the temperature will slowly increase and the first sign of trouble will be when the tyre walls disintergrate. The same situation can easily develop if a temporary repair with an external plug starts to leak.

You must also make sure you have the equipment to inflate a heavy tubeless tyre if you don't want to put a tube in it. A split is always easy to inflate, even if you only have a hand pump.

The correct type of puncture repair equpment for the type of tyres you choose is essential as are the right tyre levers. Levers designed for tubeless tyres on one piece rims are usually not suitable for split rims.

If you do intend driving off track then there are plenty of very heavy much more puncture resistant tyres available for that type of driving. These tyres are far too stiff and heavy to get on and off anything other than a split rim.

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Reply By: Member - John and Val W (ACT) - Monday, Apr 21, 2008 at 19:40

Monday, Apr 21, 2008 at 19:40
Thank you everyone for your valued comments. My question arose from lack of experience with tubeless. After a recent Simpson crossing where I had to repair tubed tyres by the side of the track, it was pointed out that repairing tubeless was easier, and that the bigger footprint they offered was a also a major benefit on sand. Couldn't argue with that so bought some second hand rims for the Troopy, luckily with lots of rubber on them. But, never having used them in the bush I wasn't too sure about sidewall issues on the GRR, or generally off-road for that matter. The consensus seems to be that either is fine, splits easier to dismount if things get that bad, tubeless easier to repair if things aren't too bad.

Footie - yes, I have BFG A/T's on the front, Muddies on the back, both giving me an extra 2" footprint width with an agressive tread - should be excellent on sand, bit concerned about staking the sidewalls.

Signman - don't know your friends, but will look out for them. They've go to be good people if they have a rig like ours!

Bungarra - good point about tube damage at extra low pressure. I do run down below 15psi when desperate, but I reckon there's still a fair safety margin at that pressure .

Davoe - good comment, cross ply on splits, radials on solid rims.

Splits - more valuable comments.

Thank you everyone.

J and V
"Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted."
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