Velocity Dually tubeless review

NicholasCarman1 1340

The 45mm Velocity Dually rim is beautifully crafted in the USA, bringing a strong doublewall rim design to fat and mid-fat tires.  The 45mm width is well matched to tires ranging from 2.4-3.8″, and is especially well suited to the 3.0″ Surly Knard.  Building a wheel with the Dually was a pleasant experience, resulting in a wheel that is strong and true.  However, the Dually is not a tubeless-ready rim, no matter the claim made by the company.

Build quality

The quality of the rim is very high.  Upon receipt, there were many signs of manufacture, including small shavings of metal and a coating of polishing compound, which left metallic grey dust on my hands.  Aside, these are all signs of a real Made in the USA product.  Upon lacing and tensioning the wheel, I discover that the Dually is a very strong rim, structurally.  The spoke holes are nicely beveled to mate with the brass DT swiss nipples used in the build.  With a little grease at the spoke hole, the nipples turn freely even at high tension.  In total, the wheel built up with minimal fuss.  The rim was straight through the entire process.  Although it can be manipulated with spoke tension, the rim also asserts its structural strength when tensioning.  Unlike a Surly Rabbit Hole rim, there is no twisting at full tension (when laced to in an alternating pattern to each side of the rim).  The Surly rim utilizes two rows of 32 offset spoke holes, drilled 7mm from center.  The Dually has 32 alternating spoke holes about 2mm from center.  These rims feature a high-polish finish.

NicholasCarman1 1346

 Tubeless rims, in general

There are several features which enable a good tubeless rim. First, there must be a horizontal bead shelf with an exact diametric dimension matching the tire (622/584/559mm). In combination with a tubeless ready tire of the same dimension (or slightly less), produced to high tolerances, the system will join tightly, seal easily, and resist a broken seal (burping).

Another feature found on some tubeless rims is a bead lock, a term that is used in several ways. What I am referring to as a bead lock is the ridge between the lower center channel and the bead shelf.  This feature resists the tire from coming off the bead shelf under extreme side loads or low pressures, as in the event of a deflated tire while riding.

Burping is especially possible in a low pressure system such as on a 45mm rim used with 29+ tires, or on wider rims and tires common on fatbikes. The result of burping may a small nuisance, as a blast of air quickly escapes from the tire and the bead reseats itself, resulting in an audible sound and minimal air loss.  The result of complete air loss may be catastrophic to the tire, rim, and rider, especially if the tire is rapidly unseated, especially while descending, cornering, and braking. Also, some tubeless specific rims (those marked UST, for instance) are completely sealed without the need for tape for rim tape.  This is a great feature to the end user, but not to the wheelbuilder.  All of the rims I have used require tape of some sort to seal the spoke holes on the inside of the rim.

Finally, some newer rims have forgone the hooked rim wall that has been essential to clincher tire systems for so long. If the bead shelf secures the tire tightly to the rim, the rim wall now acts as a limit to prevent the tire from sliding off the rim. Beware, however, that most all tires have the ability to stretch to some degree, and may blow off a rim.  This is especially a concern when using non-tubeless folding tires.  Best to stick to TR (tubeless ready) tires if you can, but of course you want to mount some Surly Knard 3.0″ tires to your Dually and you are tempted to use the lightweight tire.  Your choices include the ultralight 120tpi folding tire and the heavier 27tpi wire bead model.  In fact, I’ve found that wire bead tires can serve as a cheap and reliable substitute for proper TR tires.

When using tubeless tires and rims it is prudent to limit maximum tire pressures, especially as the hooked rim wall is minimized or nonexistent is many designs.  For instance, Stan’s recommends a max 40psi on most of their rims for this reason, especially as they endorse the use of almost any tire type on their rims, including non-tubeless tires. Their rims have very short sidewalls which maximize effective tire volume. Other companies produce entirely hookless rim sidewalls, including most carbon mountain bike rims available today.  Hooked rims are not essential to tubeless or conventional tubed tires systems when rim and tire tolerances are all in line.


Velocity Dually tubeless claims and pains

Velocity recommended to me that the Dually rims would be ready to use tubeless with a layer of high-pressure tubeless tape such as Stan’s yellow tape, or Velocity Velotape. In my first experiments all the tires mounted fit loosely, were difficult or impossible to air up, and leaked too much air at the bead to reach max pressure. They lost all of their air in seconds, indicating an inconsistency between the outside diameter of the bead shelf and the inside diameter of the tire.  I initially tested with 120tpi Surly Knard 29×3.0, Specialized Purgatory 29×2.3 2Bliss folding tire, Specialized Ground Control 2.1 2Bliss folding, On-One Chunky Monkey 2.4 folding, On-One Smorgasbord 2.25 folding, and two cheap wire bead tires, a WTB Prowler and Geax Saguaro. None captured air easily and none sealed.

Next I added a layer of Gorilla tape from edge. Several tires held air better than before, but most would not take 20+ psi, and any tire than seated was easily un-seated without effort– the bead on each tire was still easy to break, would not seal, and would be unsafe to ride.  I then installed a second layer of Gorilla Tape from edge to edge. Now, I could mount most all tires to pressure, some sealed for seconds while other held air a little longer.  I make a habit of testing tires without sealant to avoid messes and to allow for some reconfiguration before the system is finalized.  If a tire holds air without sealant, it will likely be reliable in use with sealant.

For a lightweight non-TR tire with an elastic folding bead like the Surly Knard, a third layer of tape is recommended.  With a good quality TR tire or even the wire bead Knard, fewer layers of tape may be required.  Tires that qualify for UST rating may require only a layer of Stan’s tape, although I didn’t try any UST tires on the Dually.  UST tires are unusually thick, heavy, and stiff best applied to extreme riding conditions such as remote rocky rides and/or DH riding.  In contrast, non-tubeless tires often work without issue on UST rims as they do on the rims of other manufacturers.

Regarding the tubeless ready claims of the Velocity Dually, I think the rim is under-engineered and undersized. I finally mounted Maxxis Minion 29×2.5 tires before selling the wheelset to a friend, and those tires fit tightly to the rim (with two layers of tape already installed, not sure how they would fit with only Stan’s tape in the center).  This was certainly the tightest fitting tire of all with the most significant casing and bead design, but the tire is designed for DH use and weighs well over 1000g.  The tire held air without sealant.  I loaded the tires with Stan’s and passed them along to Nate.  He’s the kind of guy that appreciates gross durability above all else, and is pleased with the wheels on his pink Fatback

NicholasCarman1 2405


Other wide rims and tires

In my quest for wider TR rims, I’ve recently build 35mm wide carbon rims, selecting ultralight models from Light Bicycle which sell direct from China, and the heavy duty Derby which comes through a small firm in California.  Both rims are genuine TR designs, which result in a reassuring ‘pop’ when airing the tires to pressure.  Two other companies are manufacturing 35mm wide TR carbon rims: Nextie rims are competitively priced direct from China, while the Nox Composites rims come through Tennessee and are especially packed with features including an offset spoke bed for improved spoke tension and strength.  The 50mm Surly Rabbit Hole rim can be modified and massaged to accept a tire tubeless.  Ibis is selling a wheelset with 41mm wide carbon rims, TR of course.  Finally, Stan’s has just released the 52mm Hugo rim, perfectly mated to tire between three to four inches.  I’m thinking the Stan’s Hugo may put the Dually and the Rabbit Hole out of business.

The Velocity Dually is certainly an improvement over older designs.  This welded dual-width rim is likely the namesake of the 45mm Dually, which is about twice as wide as two XC rims.

NicholasCarman1 1140

The width of the Dually is the perfect host for a 3.0″ Knard.

NicholasCarman1 1408

Wider is better.  A Knard tire on a 29.1mm Stan’s Flow EX (left) and a 50mm Surly Rabbit Hole rim (right).

NicholasCarman1 807

The Surly Knard 3.0″ tire on a Stan’s Flow EX.  This particular tire is well worn.

NicholasCarman1 815

On a Surly Rabbit Hole rim.  Additionally, the contact path changes with wider rims, as does the behavior of the tire due to improved sidewall support.

NicholasCarman1 816

Tubeless is better.  Even a chunky tire like this On-One Smorgasbord can get a pinch flat or puncture, but Stan’s sealant can fix it.  This was the result of a particulalry hard rock strike on the AZT, descending into Flagstaff.  Lael likes to descend fast.

NicholasCarman1 60

Surly Knard 3.0″ tires are tons of fun, but they aren’t tubeless ready, and they aren’t especially tough.  The 120tpi folding version is light and fine, while the 27tpi wire bead tire is reasonably tough, but not especially tender.  Hey Surly, how about a 60tpi tubeless ready line of tires?

NicholasCarman1 748

For a rim and tire like this, the split-tube tubeless method works best.

NicholasCarman1 804

Otherwise, there is a risk of making a mess on your way to discovering how much Gorilla Tape is required to achieve a proper tubeless seal.  The split-tube method relieves the pressure, and makes a tight seal.

NicholasCarman1 812

NicholasCarman1 826

NicholasCarman1 813

Tubeless systems on fat tires can be complicated, at least until dedicated TR rims and tires are available.  Taping a Rolling Darryl to mount a wire bead Nate.

NicholasCarman1 1282

I spent time riding the Duallys on the Salsa Mukluk, set-up as a big boned 29er with 3.0″ Knards, or 2.25″ and 2.4″ knobbies.

NicholasCarman1 2261

NicholasCarman1 2300

29+ vs 29.  Those are 2.3″ Specialized Purgatory tires on Stan’s 29.1mm Flow EX rims.

NicholasCarman1 2301

Clearance in a Fox Talas is tight.  A bike with 3.0″ tires and a 120mm fork is incredibly fun and capable.  Check out this custom creation from Meriwether Cycles.

NicholasCarman1 2304

NicholasCarman1 2309

NicholasCarman1 2366

Riding narrower 2.1″ and 2.2″ tires on the Dually, briefly.  Also pictured are a Surly ECR and Surly Krampus.

NicholasCarman1 2349

Now, Nate is in charge of the Dually wheelset.  With a pair of 29×2.5″ Maxxis Minion DHF tires, they’re ready for a full summer of riding in AK.

Nicholas Carman1 8

Nicholas Carman1 6

For now, I’ve migrated to 35mm rims, optimized for the 2.35″ to 2.4″ tire I expect to use over the next year.  Anyone make a genuine tubeless rim in this width?  Yes, but only in carbon.  Stan, how about a 35mm rim?

Nicholas Carman1 70

One excellent option for 29+ tires is the 35mm wide Derby rim.  Kevin’s got a pair mounted to his Borealis Echo.  I’ve got one on the rear of my Krampus.

Nicholas Carman1 101

Nicholas Carman1 104

23 thoughts on “Velocity Dually tubeless review

  1. Thanks for your previous fat and chubby tubeless posts.

    Using your advice I setup my Krampus’ Knard + Rabbit Holes tubeless using the split tube method. Worked well. Easy. Nice pop when the beads seated.

    Going on a 7 day backcountry trip this weekend to test them out.

    Have fun in Europe this summer.



  2. That’s a whole lot of great tubeless info to digest. I’ve got several bikes to go in my conversion process, and use your posts as a resource.

    Keep us posted on the SSWC, and have a great trip!

    • I’ll do my best to spectate and report SSWC. Should be hard work riding singletrack and drinking beers.

      Tubeless tech is still a complicated matter. There is always more to learn.

  3. I have a set of 29+ wheels for my Mukluk with Stan’s Flow EX rims. The 27tpi Knards sealed right up and and have been worry-free. Yeah I sacrificed some width but it was worth it. I’m sure the Hugo will be awesome too.

    • I used 27tpi Knards and Stan’s Flow EX rims without issue in AZ. In AK, I mounted 120tpi Knards to Stan’s rims, which were an extremely lightweight and fast combination. I’ve chosen 35mm rims in part because I will enjoy using a Knard on them, whereas I often considered a 75mm tire on a 29mm rim a bit of a compromise.

      The tubeless features of Stan’s rims (and Mavic, Bontrager, Roval, WTB) influence the benchmark with which I compare other rims, such as the Velocity Dually. The Hugo is exciting, and introduces some new features for future consideration and testing.

  4. Perhaps there’s a bit of variation. Skyler, who I was riding with in Chile, didn’t seem to have too much problem setting up his Knards (27tpi) tubeless to his Duallys, with a floor pump. However, he did manage to ding the rim pretty easily, running his tyres a little too low in pressure. Apart from that, he seemed pretty pleased with them.

    • The 27tpi Surly tires are often the better choice for tubeless systems as the casing is tougher and the wire bead resists stretching. For instance, in my early experiments on the Rabbit Hole, the 120tpi tire seated easily with a few layers of tape, but as I increased the tire pressure 5psi, the bead would begin leaking, and again with another 5psi. I’ve experienced the same thing with 120tpi Surly and 45NRTH fatbike tires, whereas the wire bead Nates on my Mukluk required less tape and seemed not to stretch at the bead when inflated. I never had any leaking with my 27tpi Nates on Rolling Darryls.

      Another nice feature of a wire bead tire is that the rigidity of the casing, especially if it has been mounted with a tube, will coax the bead outwards towards the bead shelf, easing the initial inflation process.

      Surely, Surly tires do have some variance, although I think things are much improved from several years ago. There may be some variation in Velocity rims as well, considering the way they are made in small batches. Although, another shop across town independently discovered that 27tpi tires usually seal with 1 layer of tape and 120tpi tires require 3 layers for a reliable seal (no leaking, even at installation).

      • Mine went tubeless easily with 3mm strips of tape acting as ghetto bead-locks, 2-layers of gorilla tape, and tires that had been run with tubes for a bit. But, Cass is right, they were pretty low stress in Patagonia, except for dying up my sealant supply, which took a long time to replenish. My new rear tire is not quite as charming though…

  5. Nice write up. I bought the 26x setup for my salsa mukluk fatbike I wanted a strong summer wheelset I am running 26x 4.0 tires but can also run a 26×2.4 tire likes this setup. Ordered the 29x35mm velocity blunts for my 29er thank you velocity.

  6. I’ve seen somewhere in this blog that you’ve used salsa gordos before. I’m new to tubeless in almost every way possible and wondering if you ever had any success mounting tires on 26 gordos.

    • Andrew, I’ve heard that the Gordos are particularly challenging for tubeless applications. You may consider the “split-tube” or “ghetto” method if you must set them up tubeless. Otherwise, consider a new set of hoops. The Velocity Blunt35 is claimed to be tubeless ready, and should work just fine (although I am not sure if they compare to some of the more advanced tubeless rims out there). If you like the rim width, there are some really sweet carbon rims in 35 and 40mm that may interest you, which are genuinely tubeless ready. Save a ton of weight and say goodbye to flats at the same time. Take a look at the Derby rims, which come in 559x40mm:

  7. Thanks for the post and subsequent discussion. Got a Dually wheelset. Hoping to go mid-fat on my Surly Troll. Ideally, 26″ x 2.75-3.0. As some time has passed since this post and discussion, does anyone have suggestions on tubeless ready (UST) 26″ mid-fat tires?

    • You should be able to mount any tire tubeless to that rim, although non-tubeless tires will likely require a layer or two of Gorilla Tape to build up the bead. I don;t know of any tubeless ready 26×3.0″ tires, although it looks like WTB might be releasing one for the Jamis women’s 26+ hardtails, which I just saw via Sea Otter bike show somewhere on the net. Otherwise, Surly Knard and DW are probably your best options. There are probably some 2.5″ downhill tires out there, maybe even something bigger. Maxxis Minion comes to mind, available in 26×2.5.

      • Thanks, Nick. I picked up some Surly DW’s. Hope to check out the Baja route in coming years. Keep up the good work and blog. As for rim tape on wider rims (45-50mm). Do use a special wide tape, multiple strips of standard rim tape, or do you simply use Gorilla tape as a rim tape? Just curious.

  8. Hi all,

    Just thought I’d chip in with the fact that I’ve just built up some dually’s on pro4’s and mounted Continental X-king’s 2.4. I wrapped the rim with 3 layers of wide electrical tape once around one side, once around the other then around the centre on the 3rd layer. The tyres took a small amount of effort to get onto the rim. but the sealed instantly with the aid of my portable compressor and held 40psi over night without loosing a single molecule.

    Hope this helps anyone thinking of running these rims and what tyres may or may not work with them.


    • Thanks Craig. That’s the sure way to make a tight fitting seal, however, I’m still not a fan of relying on Gorilla Tape to bandage the problem. In my opinion, tubeless ready rims should only require one layer of thin tape and tires should basically hold air without sealant.

      • I hear you dude. And in a perfect world that would be the minimum we could and should expect but sadly we don’t. And Ive had mavic rims that have took more effort with similar amounts of tape wrap (it’s my go to method) so for that I’m grateful with these.

        On another note I took the swift out today with a healthy 25psi in the dually’s and it’s fair to say, 25psi is far too flipping much! On my regular 25miles loop taking in lots of roots, slop leaf mulch I was getting lots of pinball wizard action on the roots and slip and slide on everything else. So on the next ride I’ll be dropping them down to 20psi and see how we get on. If anyone’s interested I’ll post up here how I get on.

        Thanks again,


      • That was the Mavic UST system and it didn’t catch on. TLR is a far less stringent design/target than UST so I think you will be disappointed most if not all the time with those expectations. OTOH TLR works well in practice as long as you are not taking tires on and off in the field away from higher volume pumps/compressors.

  9. I mounted a pair of 26″ Dually rims with Surly Dirt Wizards (2.75) and 1-2 layers of Gorilla Tape. Works great. Thanks for the tip. This was a great way to get my Surly Troll into the “mid fat” platform.

  10. Hi Nick,
    I’ve been searching for a TR rim for my 2017 Troll but I need 36h to match my Rohloff and Son28. The only option seems to be the Velocities: Blunt or Duallys. I ordered the Duallys last night and, wouldn’t you know it, read your article today. (FYI, there is second option: SJS Cycles will replace to casing on the Rohloff and convert it to 32h for 185UK. I would need a new Son28 as well.) I ‘need’ to go tubeless – starting down the GDMBR and then across to the BD (thank you very much!) in about a month’s time.

    Have you heard anything new about mounting Duallys tubeless since you wrote the article?

    I may need some help as I am new to tubeless. Fortunately, I live in Calgary and know Scott and have met Skyler.

    • I laid down a layer of Gorilla tape on rim (up to sidewall) and then another 3/4 inch strip strip at (but not on) the sidewall to build it up a bit. I was able to mount Dirt Wizards tubeless on Dually’s for my Troll.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s