We all hate flats. Naturally, that has led a number of companies to research a flat free solution to our tire needs. Over the years we’ve seen solid rubber or foam tires, foam filled rubber tires, pneumatic tires with massive puncture protection strips, just about anything you could think of. In spite of the amount of attempts to get it just right, the team behind Ever Tires and Nexo Tires thinks that there is still room for improvement. That led them to create two entirely different flat free systems – Nexo and Ever Tires.
Sort of the bicycle equivalent of the Michelin Tweel (though without the flexible spoke section), the Ever tire promises a new take on puncture proof tires, though the Nexo tire system will bemore accessible due to the somewhat universal design…
Unlike many other flat proof systems we’ve seen, the Ever Tires use a hollow structure that is designed to add to the ride quality. Made from a solid material, this allows the tire to be completely flat free but still feel almost like a standard tire. According to Ever Tires, “most people can’t tell the difference” between these and a standard tire, though they’re not recommended for serious riders, or for aggressive riding in wet conditions.
The main drawback is that they are mechanically installed onto the rim, which means you have to buy them as a complete wheelset, not just a set of tires. Initially, the tires will be offered on complete wheels with aluminum single or double wall rims with stainless steel spokes. Hopefully taking the wheel weight into account, Ever Tires claims the whole system will run about a pound heavier than a set of pneumatic rims and tires (and tube). Available in 12, 16, 20, 24, 26, and 700x25c, wheelsets are sold with limited hub selection so double check your compatibility if you’re going to order a set.
If you’re not into replacing your whole wheel system, the other flat free option from the same team is the Nexo tire system. Where the Ever Tire is mechanically pressed into the rim, the Nexo tire can be installed by the user with their patented T-Bolt system. Each tire includes an installation kit with multiple width T-Bolts, and you pick the set that’s the correct width for your rim. Once the T-Bolts are chosen, you press them into the tire, and then install the tire onto the rim, locking each T-Bolt into place.
The Nexo tire is also solid (looking). Part of what sets this tire apart from previous flat free tires is their use of NEXELL polymer composite which is claimed to be a macromolecular material that is filled with tons of little pockets of Nitrogen gas. The pockets are small enough that even if you get a nail or something through the tire, it won’t affect the tire’s ride which is said to be good up to 5,000km. Compared to other foam tires such as EVA, NEXELL is said to better withstand heat, and have much better wear resistance and offer a ride closer to that of pneumatic tires.
Like the Ever Tire though, there are downsides. Rolling resistance is supposedly 15-20% more than a standard pneumatic tire, and the tire comes with the same warming about using caution in wet weather riding. The tires also carry a weight limit of 100kg (220lbs)
Offered in multiple sizes and colors, the Nexo Tires start out a bit cheaper than the Ever Tires at $75 for two tires and the installation kit. Wheels and tires for the Ever Tire system start at $76 for kids’ 12-16″ bikes, up to $105 for the 700x24c wheel and tire set. Shipping only to the U.S., both tire systems are currently past funding in a Kickstarter, with delivery expected for January 2017.