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Pirelli P Zero Smartube - quick review

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Pirelli P Zero Smartube - quick review

Old 01-07-22, 12:11 PM
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Pirelli P Zero Smartube - quick review

Just thought I'd post my thoughts about these tubes: https://velo.pirelli.com/en/ww/product/p-zero-smartube

First off, they are VERY pricey. I mean, they cost almost as much as my tires! Second, you have to be even more careful than usual when putting them on. But, man, they are SUPER light. And they actually FEEL really nice. I've been riding them for a couple of weeks on my lightweight climbing bike and they seem to make the tires roll better (nothing scientific here; just subjective). And an extra plus is that they never deflate! I haven't had to pump them up again since I installed them two weeks ago. Will I buy them for every bike? No way... too expensive. But it's a nice splurge...
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Old 01-07-22, 12:14 PM
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I wonder how this compares to the Tubolito or Aerothan tube. I expect similar.
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Old 01-07-22, 12:15 PM
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Originally Posted by datlas View Post
I wonder how this compares to the Tubolito or Aerothan tube. I expect similar.
Yeah, I think you're right. Haven't tried those but my bike shop had these in stock so decided what the heck...
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Old 01-07-22, 12:19 PM
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OK, I'm game... how pricey? I've never run latex, so I'm curious how these would compare.
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Old 01-07-22, 12:53 PM
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Originally Posted by blacknbluebikes View Post
OK, I'm game... how pricey? I've never run latex, so I'm curious how these would compare.
Word is these are lighter than latex but latex has lowest rolling resistance. Neither are cheap.
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Old 01-07-22, 12:59 PM
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Found them online for $37. Repair is possible with a TPU patch kit.
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Old 01-07-22, 01:09 PM
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I paid $39.99 at the shop...
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Old 01-07-22, 01:11 PM
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Originally Posted by crowbike View Post
Found them online for $37. Repair is possible with a TPU patch kit.
One of my cycling buddies tried the Tubolito which is similar. He got a flat and the tube was literally shredded, not repairable. I don't know if that's typically how these things get flats, but be aware.

p.s. he does like the light weight and road feel of the tube
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Old 01-07-22, 01:16 PM
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Originally Posted by datlas View Post
One of my cycling buddies tried the Tubolito which is similar. He got a flat and the tube was literally shredded, not repairable. I don't know if that's typically how these things get flats, but be aware.

p.s. he does like the light weight and road feel of the tube
The P Zero box says you cannot patch... So a flat would be pricey!
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Old 01-07-22, 02:22 PM
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Before I switched to tubeless I rode very lightweight latex tubes (Vredestein race something - they are featherweight). I could swear they rolled a slight bit better than butyl which might have been placebo but what I could definitely notice is improved road feel and comfort.

Tubeless 25mm GP5000 S is my waaah sexy tire. The older generation GP5000 TL which I have on my "workhorse" wheelset is also good but hard to get on and a bit wider and heavier/stiffer.
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Old 01-08-22, 11:59 AM
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Originally Posted by Caliwild View Post
The P Zero box says you cannot patch... So a flat would be pricey!
https://road.cc/content/review/pirel...martube-286887
From the article:
The tubes are from the first batch produced and have "Do not repair" printed on them, but this advice has since changed. Pirelli now says that TPU patches, such as the Tubolito patch kit, are effective and safe. One thing to bear in mind, though, is that a patch can take up to 30 minutes to cure and the process is different to a standard tube – best done at home rather than out on a ride. It isn't possible to use either a normal vulcanised rubber patch or a self-adhesive patch.
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Old 01-10-22, 06:34 PM
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Originally Posted by crowbike View Post
https://road.cc/content/review/pirel...martube-286887
From the article:
The tubes are from the first batch produced and have "Do not repair" printed on them, but this advice has since changed. Pirelli now says that TPU patches, such as the Tubolito patch kit, are effective and safe. One thing to bear in mind, though, is that a patch can take up to 30 minutes to cure and the process is different to a standard tube – best done at home rather than out on a ride. It isn't possible to use either a normal vulcanised rubber patch or a self-adhesive patch.
Good to know! Thanks...
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Old 01-11-22, 08:33 AM
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A $37 inner tube that may (or may not) be patch-able?

Hard pass.
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Old 01-11-22, 10:53 AM
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I run Schwalbe Aerothan on two setups which I tired of futzing with tubeless, and as the OP found with the Pirelli TPU tubes, the Aerothan have proven to be excellent for me, too. They feel like they almost disappear inside supple casing tires— in my case, Herse and Ultradynamico— and hold air great. I did have a puncture in one tube, just a clean hole (as expected; TPU is elastic in all directions and should not rip or shred), which patched easily with a Lezyne self-adhesive patch.

Yeah, they’re fairly expensive, but as an alternative to finicky, leaky, supple casing tubeless tires which need constant sealant topping up, they’re a great alternative which delivers advantages in lower weight, puncture resistance, and improved rolling resistance compared to butyl, as well as improved ease of installation, lighter weight, and greater durability (i.e. puncture and snake bite resistance) than latex.

For my particular mix of needs, TPU is almost the perfect solution, with the only mark against it being the high cost of entry. I’m three pairs deep now (a set is waiting to go on the Racelight’s winter GravelKing slicks) which is probably all I need to get my mulit-bike maintenance routine under control. My other main three bikes are running tubeless either acceptably (650b Herse standards on WTB i23) or perfectly (2 pairs Schwalbe Pro One on American Classic Argent), and the rest can run butyl.
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Old 01-12-22, 09:38 AM
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Originally Posted by Koyote View Post
A $37 inner tube that may (or may not) be patch-able?

Hard pass.
Sure. The faff and expense ppl are willing to put up with, to not run perfectly fine clinchers and butyl tubes, or to get tiny perceived "gains", never fails to bogle my mind.
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Old 01-12-22, 10:45 AM
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Originally Posted by Racing Dan View Post
Sure. The faff and expense ppl are willing to put up with, to not run perfectly fine clinchers and butyl tubes, or to get tiny perceived "gains", never fails to bogle my mind.
Different strokes for different folks...
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Old 01-12-22, 02:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Caliwild View Post
Different strokes for different folks...

Of course, no worries :-)

Id even be inclined to try myself, if wasn't for the steep price, the iffy patchability (is that a word?) and rolling resistance tests showing only the very lightest 25g TPU tubes being "faster" than a mid weight butyl tube - by 1 (one) watt .. Normal weight TPUs at ~40g or so even test slightly -slower- that a basic conti race light. Im sorry, at that point, what IS the point? :-)

https://www.bicyclerollingresistance...pu-inner-tubes
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Old 01-12-22, 06:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Racing Dan View Post
Normal weight TPUs at ~40g or so even test slightly -slower- that a basic conti race light. Im sorry, at that point, what IS the point? :-)

https://www.bicyclerollingresistance...pu-inner-tubes
It seems unfair to compare what you call “normal weight” TPU tubes to the lightweight Conti Race28 Light when the article you linked to itself says “ the heavier Schwalbe SV15 which probably is the benchmark for a standard butyl tube.” If you were being more honest and comparing like-to-like, the TPU trounce butyl across the board by every single performance measure.

So what’s the point? TPU delivers more of what you want and less of don’t want. It really should be no surprise that better costs more, but I certainly understand when it’s the case that better simply costs too much.
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Old 01-12-22, 07:22 PM
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I believe you are the dishonest one. It says "Schwalbe SV15 which probably is the benchmark for a standard butyl tube. The 102 grams Continental Race 28 simply is the fastest rolling ~ 100 grams butyl tube.".


Now I simply said. In other words than before. To get a TPU that is "faster" than a Conti race light, a mid weight butyl tube, not fragile ultra light, you need to get a ultra light TPU, that is all of 1 (one) watt, per wheel, faster If you get the normal Tubolito it is actually slower and the other normal weight TPUs test the same as the conti. They are a bit lighter for sure. About 30g a wheel. Factoring in weight you "save" 0.2W total, if you ascend 3300 ft/hr. except if you get the standard tubolito, in which case you still loose ~0.5W total, even if you are ascending briskly and factor in the weight saving


As I said before: Nothing but faff and expense to not run perfectly fine clinchers and butyl tubes, or to get tiny perceived "gains".
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Old 01-12-22, 09:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Racing Dan View Post
I believe you are the dishonest one. It says "Schwalbe SV15 which probably is the benchmark for a standard butyl tube. The 102 grams Continental Race 28 simply is the fastest rolling ~ 100 grams butyl tube.".


Now I simply said. In other words than before. To get a TPU that is "faster" than a Conti race light, a mid weight butyl tube, not fragile ultra light, you need to get a ultra light TPU, that is all of 1 (one) watt, per wheel, faster If you get the normal Tubolito it is actually slower and the other normal weight TPUs test the same as the conti. They are a bit lighter for sure. About 30g a wheel. Factoring in weight you "save" 0.2W total, if you ascend 3300 ft/hr. except if you get the standard tubolito, in which case you still loose ~0.5W total, even if you are ascending briskly and factor in the weight saving


As I said before: Nothing but faff and expense to not run perfectly fine clinchers and butyl tubes, or to get tiny perceived "gains".
Incorrect, because Aerothan in the tested size is not an “ultralight” nor priced hors categorie such as a Tubolito S; Aerothan Race is standard TPU, and Schwalbe offer no alternate in that size, ultralight or otherwise.

Again, compare like for like, and TPU is better in every performance category. If you cannot afford to run better tubes than Conti Race28 Light, it’s okay…no one cares or is judging you for that, so drop the defensiveness, it’s just an innertube.
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Old 01-12-22, 10:09 PM
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The aerothan is exactly the same as the conti 28 light at 80 psi and all of 0.1w (zero point one) faster at 60psi .. lol

Sorry, thats the very definition faff and expense for nothing :-)

Seems to me you are the one being "defensive" and trying to paint me as butt hurt cos you think I cant afford a bicycle tube. Give me a break, haha!
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Old 01-12-22, 10:55 PM
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Late last year I put carbon wheels on the Bianchi. The shop had P Zero race tires and the P Zero tubes. He gave me a nice discount so I thought to go all in. That set up gives a quick, smooth and nimble ride. Considering what the bike, kit, accessories run these days in cost I figured why not. I have never patched a tube. carry a new one with me. Not comfortable with a patch.
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Old 01-13-22, 06:08 AM
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Originally Posted by Racing Dan View Post
Sure. The faff and expense ppl are willing to put up with, to not run perfectly fine clinchers and butyl tubes, or to get tiny perceived "gains", never fails to bogle my mind.
There’s not much faff involved. It’s an inner tube. You install it the same way you would install any other inner tube. They reliably hold air and are easily and reliably patched with the right patch kit. I have used the Tubolito patch kit to successfully patch both Schwalbe and Pirelli branded TPU inner tubes. As far as cost goes….a few years of use out of them easily justifies the expense, Dollar per gram, there aren’t many cheaper ways to remove grams from your bike.
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Old 01-13-22, 07:20 AM
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Originally Posted by Racing Dan View Post
The aerothan is exactly the same as the conti 28 light at 80 psi and all of 0.1w (zero point one) faster at 60psi .. lol

Sorry, thats the very definition faff and expense for nothing :-)

Seems to me you are the one being "defensive" and trying to paint me as butt hurt cos you think I cant afford a bicycle tube. Give me a break, haha!
Again, like-for-like, TPU outperforms butyl in every category. To clarify for you, that means comparing extralight TPU to extralight butyl, standard TPU to standard butyl, MTB TPU tubes to MTB butyl, and so on. Comparing Aerothan to Conti Race Light is *not* a like-for-like comparison, as I explained to you upthread, yet you continue to make it the basis of your silly argument.

If you simply don’t believe the benefits of TPU tubes are worth the price for you, just say as much and leave it there. You won’t get an argument from me for that. I think they’re expensive, too, but it’s not a something-for-nothing deal, so $80 for a pair actually seems like getting a lot compared to other stuff on the bike. I mean, what on the bike am I gonna spend $80 on and get more? Saddle? Bars? Tires? Grip tape? Seatpost? Wheels? No way.
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Old 01-14-22, 01:38 PM
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PSA: They're on sale at 365 Cycles for $30.03. After my morning ride on them, I decided to get a couple more for another bike. I will say that subjectively they FEEL lovely. Not sure the science backs it up, but I really love how they ride.

https://365cycles.com/collections/co...m-presta-valve
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