Clinchers Vs Tubulars Vs Tubeless – Which Tyres Should You Choose For Your Road Bike & Why?

The clinchers vs. tubulars debate is long running. Which tyres should you choose?
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Clincher tyres are the standard; they’re almost certainly what you had on your bike when you first got it. Tubular tyres are the pro racers standard; they need to be glued to your wheels, which takes a bit of expertise, but the pros had steadfastly refused to move away from them, even though excellent clincher tyres and wheels are now available. And, now there’s a third option, tubeless clincher tyres. These have been used in mountain biking for years now, but have proved more difficult to adapt to the road and are yet to really gain much traction in the pro peloton, although they do offer lots of grip.

Which do you ride? Let us know what and why in the comments.

Watch more:
How to glue tubular tyres like a pro:
How to fit road tubeless tyres:

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ole lu says:

watch till the end 😉


I have a mountain bike with tube inside the tire what type of new tires am I going to need

Jake M says:

1:28 Why does Matt get so freaked out about discs? Shut the f**k, Stephens; discs are the best, hands down. Period.

ahall3823 says:

I think this video needs to be updated. Tubular tyres are generally attached with tub tape. It’s far simpler than gluing and only takes 12 hrs to set. You can now have all the benefits of tubulars with only a fraction of the effort you used to have to put in.

Cool Stuff Guys Like says:

Awesome! I got an old set of Mavic GL330 wheels and am going tubular. I am hoping with tubular tape it won’t be too big of deal

liu wenjie says:

I saw sausage and eggs…XD

Mark G. says:

Tubeless bulge

White Male says:

Marathon Plus … Love those tyres…

Customer Old says:

Great video, but a little misleading. You should add more clarity and specify that tubular rims are not compatible with clincher tires and tubes. I made the mistake after watching this to buy clincher tires for my tubular rims and it made me mad to find out that I could not, almost ripped one of the new tires to try and fit. I returned them. Please be more helpful to new cyclists like me by educating us in more detail on what it is possible and what is not. Not everyone is rich to keep swapping rim sets in a heartbeat as you probably assumed people do when comparing the two.

Rockinroomsrob says:

I use tubs on my retro lo pro tt bike 650/700c 19mm front and 23 rear. I love feel but wouldn’t want to use them to commute on to work on because of practical and comfort reasons, on my commuter set ups, fixie or geared I prefer to run 28mm clinchers, easy to fix and comfortable

Erik Knudsen says:

So there are other videos showing how carbon clinchers can heat up so much (mainly decents) that the resin changes shape and rim is trashed. True or not true for carbon clinchers?

z1522 says:

After suffering multiple goathead flats fifty miles from home, I gave up the tubeless conceit circa 1975, and never looked back. Raced citizens and out-cornered in crits on clinchers, and can say I can carry one to three tubes, plus patch kit, never worrying about tires – and anyway, my Conti 4000s have been basically flat-free despite miles on rough gravel. Tubeless just add sidewall stiffening that makes for heavier and less comfortable riding, and tubes are nearly break-even on weight, sans the mess when you inevitably flat anyhow. Why do companies keep trying to “fix” things that aren’t broken? Usually, to convince newcomers too timid to fix a flat, for starters. Also, bike racing clearly is no longer a blue collar, working class pursuit when tubulars cost more than car tires. $100-150, seriously? For rich amateur senior cat 3 types only.

Charles Rush says:

I just spent $250 for two tubeless tires, some sealant, and the tape to replace the worn set on my bike that I have only had on the bike since seven months ago. That really makes no sense to me because I can get four tires mounted and balanced and installed on my car for that much money usually about every two years. What the fuck is wrong with the bike industry charging that much for bicycle tires. I surely hope I can get some mileage out of them because bike tires generally don’t last very long. What a crime.

SuperBardley says:

Mine:  me -> 150lbs, Vittoria Diamante Pro 25mm clinchers + Vreedestein latex tubes = >3,000 mi/yr with zero flats.  Fantastic ride feels very similar to the tubulars I’ve tried.  My cousin (225lbs) used to get a flat just about 9 out of 10 rides he did (2-3/week), then he switched from butyl to latex tubes and manages to routinely go at least 3 months without flatting.  The formula is simple:  latex + high thread count tires (>= 220 tpi) yields a much more compliant ride than the mass-market 160 tpi tires + butyl rides.

Interestingly, one of the most experienced riders in my local club tried latex and hated it because “the ride was too grabby and lively.”  LOL

Also:  Without a doubt, and average route speed comparo’s over the same route have proven it every single time, I log much faster speeds when I pump up my tires to 115lbs than when I pump to 95lbs.

As a side note, I positively hate the feel of Conti Gatorbacks & 4-Seasons, they just feel wooden, dead, disconnected.  I am lucky that I am light enough to get high miles on my tires, but even if I didn’t, I still would probably speed my hard earned $$ on better tires rather than another faddish jersey or cutesie socks.

MikeyLindsey'sAdventures says:

I ride schwable stelvio on my specialized allez

Haassan1 says:

I like the vids, but plz make the sound a bit warmer.

Jérémy Drouin says:

Clincher or tubeless… tubular is stupid old crap for guys with following car and a lot of spair wheel.

Ride With Chris says:

I’ve got a video here explaining how to go about filling a tubeless MTB tire:

yilmanbabilonia says:

Back when these guys didn’t care about hair or hair products hehehehe good times

StealthElectronVIP says:

Tube-Less? Or Tubeless?

J T says:

Why would Simon want deep section wheels for cross?

Karl Strugnell says:

Always raced on tubs
Always feel better
Always used tub tape
Won national track tt and road on tape
No need for glue

John Sulsenti says:

I tried Tufo tubular clinchers. Basicly tubulars that fit on clincher rims. Very hard to put mount on rims, but work very well. I found them very durable, liked their ride but only in 25 is the widest.

MrChad97Z says:

i could barely understand what they were saying unless I intently listened hard. But I think the take away is, its all the same, and don’t sweat the small stuff. haha

AweSum PowerZ says:

These boys are crazy!!! Hilarious!!! Love it!!!

Bob Keller says:

lower presuure rolls easier? that makes no sense. prove it!

MikeyLindsey'sAdventures says:

23mm where its at lol

BioStuff415 says:

clinchers are the most dangerous on a blow-out. If you have ever flatted on both whilt descending – you will understand directly. Rim TAPE!!! makes it easy and Tubular tires are now the same price…

Jack Spencer says:

Can you really feel a difference between tubulars and clinchers while riding? Genuinely asking, I’ve never ridden tubs

ZenTeT says:

clincher tires are so easy to fix if u did it as many times as me…. i can fix a clincher in 15 mins or less

John Sulsenti says:

What do you think of the Tufo C S33 Pro Tubular Clincher?

Velo City says:

Tubeless are awesome in the city because you can run a soft, grippy tire without worrying about punctures. You can’t run a decent performance clincher otherwise because they flat too often (too much crap on the road)

I started out on Conti GP 4000s 25mm a few years back but switched to gatorskins after about a month because I would get a flat at least twice a week. Gatorskins never punctured but were like ice skates in the wet. Recently switched to tubeless zipp tangentes at 25mm and they give you the best of both worlds. Love them.

Paul Fitzpatrick says:

Nearly 2 years on, is it time to revisit Tubeless vs Clincher for road bikes? #torqueback

Jackie van Schalkwyk says:

I changed to tubeless… should’ve done it a long time ago..bye bye flats!!!

mr BigData says:

dudes : Put sealant in tubulars : Perfect

James says:

If your tyres are less than 2.3 inches wide you’re riding the wrong bike.

2nd3rd1st says:

Roadies: flaunting their willies for the world to see since 1956.

nowisthetime12 says:

pride of Britania

Sampo Saarela says:

1300g for a front wheel? Should you guys check your scale? A cheap pair of Chinese tubular wheels go easily at 1100g. A pair. Your front wheel was 1300g. So that would make a set to weight at least 2600 which is totally unacceptable weight for a wheelset.

joseph domingue says:

I ride a gravel bike with 35c tires with tubes and never have any problems. I prefer running higher to max pressures in my tires, and have never found the need or desire for lower PSI on a road bike application. However I do feel very different when it comes to my 29er MTB.

Takyri B-Emaja says:

can you make a video about tires, like the sort of tires, like raining, dry, etc pls

Sam says:

holy f 100psi lol damn be like a rock?

Pollo Frito says:

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