For almost as long as fat bikes have been a thing, trying to set them up tubeless has also been a thing. We even wrote a blog about it.
45North is the first company to release a tubeless ready tire, the Vanhelga, a four inch wide tire with what looks to be a trail bike tread pattern. Marketed as winter trail riding tire, 6.5mm tall, aggressively shaped and siped lugs look promising for the all season fat-biker as well. The Vanhelga uses dual compound rubber, harder in the middle for increased tread life, softer on the outside for more traction when cornering.
David Gabrys, 45North Brand Manager, says “Our objective with the VANHELGA tubeless bead profile was to introduce it as part of a tubeless-ready system, so we partnered with Whisky Parts Co. on their new No.9 carbon rim project to create the first tubeless-ready fat bike system.” We saw those rims in prototype form at Sea Otter on the new Salsa Bucksaw full suspension fat bike.
The Vanhelga uses a very distinct bead shape, with a large flat surface for a better seal with the rim, and a more secure fit, which should help keep the tire from burping or coming unseated at the super low pressures needed for traction in soft snow.
There will be both 60 and 120 tpi casings available, at $125 and $155 (per tire), and should be ready for the snow season, with arrival slated for September.
If this is like almost all other fat bike related items that have come out lately, you best get you and your wallet down to the local dealer and get an order in now. The odds are good the first order will sell out, and it may take months for the Vanhelgas to come back into stock.
Check out www.45NRTH.com for more info.