I ride a Fat Bike which is fitted with 26x4.6" tyres.

I am worried about puncturing on trails in the South African bush.

What can be done to mitigate this risk of puncture as tire liners and puncture resistant tires do not seem to be readily available for fat bikes?

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  • I would go with puncture resistant tires. My experience is that a liner rubs the tube and wears a hole in it in a few months. – paparazzo Oct 15 '14 at 13:21
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    I've reworded the question to make it answerable without recommending specific products and to call out the difference between this and similar questions. – Emyr Oct 15 '14 at 15:52
  • The ideal would be a spongy 'mousse' ring instead of the inner tube. It is done on desert crossing motorcycles. – Carel Oct 15 '14 at 18:04
  • @Benzo Why would you inject tubeless tire sealant in the inner tube when there is sealant designed for an inner tube? – paparazzo Oct 15 '14 at 18:22
  • @Blam - No reason you couldn't use that type of sealant, but my google-fu pulled up a lot of references to people using stans in their tubes, most likely because they already had it hanging around and had the tools to inject it in the tubes. – Benzo Oct 15 '14 at 18:57

Though not supported by specialized, your best option is to probably setup your wheels tubeless with tire sealant. Keep an extra bottle of sealant with you just in case you have trouble on the trail and need a refresh, but keep a tube handy if that fails as well.

Some folks have had good luck by injecting some tube sealant (like slime) inside their inner tubes as a preventative measure as well. You might get a few punctures, but they can seal up with this method. You'll probably want to have a pump handy as you may still loose a bit of air from time to time. Some folks have had good luck using tubeless sealant in place of tube sealant, but YMMV.

I've also read a some discussions about possibly building your own tire liners from several layers of TYVEK shipping envelopes taped together, but have not really heard much talk to how effective that is in practice.

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  • FWIW. I ran a 'ghetto tubeless' setup on a stock surly pugsley for a while with no issues other than needing a fresh squirt of stans after a while. – Benzo Oct 16 '14 at 20:10

A large carcass under low pressure is flexible.

Due to the unusually large contact patch, the pressure your weight applies to the ground is low

Low contact pressure + flexible carcass => reduced risk of penetration.

I don't know of any fatbikers running liners, but many do do tubeless to reduce rotating weight and lose the rolling resistance created by friction between the tube and tyre.

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    Its not just a large carcass on a fat bike, its a large thin carcass to reduce weight. – Batman Oct 17 '14 at 12:07

Two answers suggest tubeless but I am not aware of any tubeless fat rims or tubeless conversion kits.

This is a good video on a DIY fat tubeless conversion
Tubeless Fatbike Conversion Update

And lots of sealant as you have a lot of rubber to cover

Or Slimed tubes as I suggested in a comment.

Unless you are riding sand and need the flotation I would go regular true tubeless. You can get regular tires up to 2.4.

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  • "Unless you are riding sand and need the flotation" Do you even fatbike, bro? – Emyr Oct 22 '14 at 9:22
  • @Emyr dO Do you even tubeless? – paparazzo Oct 22 '14 at 11:08
  • Tubeless-ready fatbike rim: fat-bike.com/2014/06/… – Emyr Oct 22 '14 at 12:39
  • @Emyr Then why not post that as comment to the question or as answer. – paparazzo Oct 22 '14 at 12:43

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