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I have a Giant gravel bike that I use exclusively on asphalt -- that is, I use it as a road bike. I do perhaps 175km a week, 10k meters in ascent/descent a week.

The issue I have is that to get to where I bike -- and also where I bike -- there's a lot of broken glass and other detritus and I've been getting punctures every couple of months (or sometimes more) that my tubeless tires don't stop, so I end up with a flat and a lot of sealant sprayed all over.

My bike shop suggested I try the Tannus Armour tires. Has anyone tried these for 'serious' cycling? What are the pros and cons for you? I've read a number of reviews which seem to think that they're fine, but I'm a little skeptical.

Do they grip and handle as well as normal tires, particularly on descents and when it's wet? How do they feel? Are they noticeably heavy? Do they help prevent punctures, and if so, is it worth it for any tradeoffs? Anything else you've noticed?

Thanks for any info!

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  • 2
    This is a very open ended, discussion inviting question which is off-topic. I would VtC if I had the rep to do so.
    – FreeMan
    Oct 20, 2022 at 17:25
  • @FreeMan: I think it’s a very good question on how one can improve puncture resistance in off-road applications if tubeless sealant is not good enough. For city riding, traveling or commuting I’d just use “puncture proof” tyre like the Schwalbe Marathon Plus or Continental Super Sport Plus if puncture resistance is a priority.
    – Michael
    Oct 21, 2022 at 5:36
  • What tyres do you currently use? What kind of punctures did you get? I think a tyre with integrated puncture protection generally works much better than those liners.
    – Michael
    Oct 21, 2022 at 5:48
  • I voted to close the question in it's current form as it invites opinions rather than focussing on facts. Rewording to focus on the pros and cons of tyre inserts for tubed tyres (tubless inserts are a whole other category) would probably make a good question
    – Andy P
    Oct 21, 2022 at 12:07
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    I retracted my close vote, because I mistook the product for solid tire from the same company, and this one has already good answers.
    – ojs
    Oct 22, 2022 at 9:26

3 Answers 3

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Tannus armor aren't tires, they are armor. Tannus has solid "tubeless" tires as well, but those have the problem that you can't choose the tire based on the tread pattern and other features (so studded tires aren't possible), and the rolling resistance is probably even larger than with tannus armor.

I use Tannus armor on my winter wheelset on an e-road-bike. The logic is that when winter arrives, sharp gravel is distributed everywhere to prevent pedestrians from slipping on ice. This, combined with an erroneous idea that cyclists should share roads with pedestrians and not with cars, has led to an environment where good low rolling resistance tires puncture in about 100 km of riding.

My winter wheelset has studded tires plus Tannus armor. The idea is that I don't want to have too many wheelsets, so the winter wheelset is a wheelset that can handle any environment, whereas the summer wheelset is for roads free of snow, ice and sharp gravel. I could of course have four wheelsets: one with studded tires with armor, one with normal tires + armor, one with studded tires only, one with normal tires only, but that would be two wheelsets too many.

The ride accuracy is quite poor, with Tannus armor the bike doesn't go forward in a straight line but the path wobbles a bit and the bike doesn't respond to handling as accurately. Rolling resistance is huge. Normally, I get ~150 km distance from my 500 kWh e-bike battery, but with winter wheelset I only get ~75 km.

My opinion is that you should use such an armor only in extreme environments. Getting puncture every 100 km due to sharp gravel is extreme. I don't believe getting a puncture every couple of months would mean it's useful to use such an armor. You lose a lot of time due to your slower speed. That's probably 20x more time than what it would take to just fix the punctures whenever they happen.

Your "puncture every couple of months" is apparently a puncture every 1400 km, not extreme enough to justify using armor.

In my case, the Tannus armor has reliably prevented punctures. Not a single puncture.

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  • Strange, with my Nokian Hakka W106 studded tyres I’ve had maybe one puncture in 1000km. They are really heavy, thick, durable rubber (they have to be to prevent the studs from poking through or falling out), I’d be surprised if gravel is able to get through. Unlike my other tyres they don’t even have small nicks and scratches.
    – Michael
    Oct 21, 2022 at 8:27
  • I'm not sure if my studded tires would puncture in 100km. However, I'm sure that Continental GP 5000 will puncture in 100km, if riding on this sharp gravel distributed over pavement, in wet environments (where water acts as a lubricant to allow gravel to penetrate to the tire). Of course on real gravel roads, GP 5000 will not puncture in 100km, because real gravel roads have the gravel on an environment softer than the tire, whereas gravel on pavement is worse since pavement is harder than the tire.
    – juhist
    Oct 21, 2022 at 14:36
  • I’ve had sidewall cuts on GP4000 from riding in gravel ruts. But they have really delicate sidewalls and they are quite exposed.
    – Michael
    Oct 21, 2022 at 14:39
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No personal experience, but I found a test measuring the rolling resistance and puncture resistance of Tannus Armour and a few other liners: https://www.bicyclerollingresistance.com/specials/puncture-resistant-tire-liners

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I think you would be better off using a puncture resistant tyre, like Schwalbe Marathons", or similar. These are very resistant to glass and similar debris, and would roll better than a solid option

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