Deaneasy TNT tubeless spoke hole plugs could spell the end for rim tape

Also debuts super light ABS Roc tyre defender insert

Hiding away in a secluded corner of The Bike Place 2018 was Italian brand Deaneasy, showing off its unique take on a rim defender insert and some nifty tubeless-compatible rim plugs.

ABS Roc rim defender insert

The ABS Roc enters the increasingly crowded rim-defender market with its own unique take on a “multiperformance technofoam ring for tubeless tyres”.

If the claimed weights ring true, this will be one of the lightest inserts available on the market
If the claimed weights ring true, this will be one of the lightest inserts available on the market

Deaneasy claims that the ABS Roc rim defender is made from a proprietary, totally non-absorbent polymer foam that the Italian brand says has been developed solely for this purpose.

A 27.5in defender weighs a claimed 190g, which is considerably lighter than the Cushcore and Flat Tyre Defender.

The unique profile of the insert can be clearly seen here
The unique profile of the insert can be clearly seen here

The profile of the ABS Roc is quite unique, with a pronounced trough moulded around the inner and outer circumference of the defender. As well as reducing weight, Deaneasy claims that this also improves ride quality and makes it easier to install than its competitors.

The ABS Roc is available in three different widths suitable for XC, enduro/trail and downhill tyres. The inserts come in one length and are trimmed down by the end user. Like the Huck Norris, the ABS Roc is held together with a chunky ziptie.

The ABS Roc rim defender costs €150 for two inserts.

We’re hoping to get a pair of these in for resident extruded-foam enthusiast, and chronic rim-dinger, Seb Stott, so watch this space.

Deaneasy TNT tubeless spoke hole plugs

These plugs from Deaneasy are claimed to be better sealing than regular tubeless tape
These plugs from Deaneasy are claimed to be better sealing than regular tubeless tape

Deaneasy also had these tubeless compatible rim plugs on show.

The “TNT tube no tape air screw system” (what a mouthful) is designed to be used instead of tubeless rim tape. Deaneasy claims that the process of setting the plugs up is easier than tubeless tape and that they aren’t prone to damage from tyre levers.

The plugs are first placed in a spoke hole by hand, then locked in place with a small plastic set screw that expands the plug against the edge of the hole. A small spring-loaded tool is supplied with the kit to fit these set screws.

Deaneasy claims that once set up, the plugs can seal up to 4-bar of pressure. The plugs cannot be reused.   

The plugs are available in a range of different sizes to fit most modern rims
The plugs are available in a range of different sizes to fit most modern rims

The plugs come in a range of colour-coded sizes to ensure the best possible fit. You can determine the size of the spoke holes in your rim bed by using a set of vernier calipers or using the measuring tool that Deaneasy produces.

The plugs are seen here without the expanding screws
The plugs are seen here without the expanding screws

Deaneasy was keen to stress that the plugs will only work with alloy rims that are welded, or with carbon rims — you will need to use a small length of tape to seal the gap in pinned/sleeved alloy rims. The plugs are not compatible with road tubeless setups, but Deaneasy suggested it could develop a tarmac-friendly solution should demand grow. 

A bag of 70 plugs will set you back €25.

These bear some similarities to Veloplugs, which have been around for just about forever, but as far as I’m aware, these are the only tubeless compatible rim plugs available on the market.

Whether fitting 32-ish of these plugs will actually be easier than taping a rim remains to be seen, but either way I commend Deaneasy for trying something new.

Jack Luke

Staff Writer, UK
Jack has been riding and fettling with bikes for his whole life. Always in search of the hippest new niche in cycling, Jack is a self-confessed gravel dork and thinks nothing of bivouacking on a beach after work. Also fond of cup and cone bearings, skids and tan wall tyres.
  • Discipline: Long days in the saddle by either road or mountain bike
  • Preferred Terrain: Happiest when on a rural road by the coast or crossing a remote mountain pass. Also partial to a cheeky gravel adventure or an arduous hike-a-bike.
  • Current Bikes: Custom Genesis Croix de Fer all road adventure wagon, Niner EMD 9.
  • Dream Bike: A rigid 44 Bikes Marauder, all black please.
  • Beer of Choice: Caesar Augustus
  • Location: Bristol, UK

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