Tubular Gluing Tech and Tips

The width on the X Rim from PSIMET is so large it actually uses all of the base tape on all popular cyclocross tires. Most tubular rims only have a rim bed that is the width of the brush seen in this photo.

Tubular tires are still the performance leader when it comes to CX. Their ability to roll at lower pressures and their suppleness make them the preferred choice of pros and elites around the world. Still, there are those who balk at the thought of having to glue a tire to a rim, but with the new X rim, a secure glue job has never been easier to achieve. Our rim bed provides the most generous gluing area available, using nearly the entire base tape of the tire. This means you can get a substantially better bond, as well as better support for the tire’s width. The X rim provides 38% more glue contact area than even our own 38W rims … and approximately 60% more than almost all of the most popular CX offerings from other brands.

How to Glue Tubulars


After years of being asked to teach this I have finally made a video to show how we glue our tubulars here at PSIMET. Biggest thing you will notice is that unlike everyone else who tries to teach this I immediately state that there is no single method that has to be done in order for it to work. The fundamentals have to be followed.

1. Surface prep for the rim and the tire.
2. Quality and age of the glue.
3. Application (thin enough coats that they can cure).
4. Cure time (varies and I explain it).
5. Mounting procedure.

When gluing we recommend only using Mastik One from Vittoria. We have found Mastik One does seem to have a shelf life. While there doesn’t seem to be a date code we can reference and there is no rule of thumb on how long the shelf life is we simply find that glue we can determine is “old” just doesn’t have the same strength. We recommend buying your glue from a dealer that always has a fresh supply – not a shop that has 3 tubes left over from who knows when that have a half inch of dust on them.

General process is:

  1. Stretch tires on a bare rim.
  2. Clean the rim. Emory cloth followed by rubbing alcohol.
  3. Clean the tire – Challenge or regular cloth base tape tires clean/buff slightly to raise the cotton fibers. We don’t clean Donnelly base tape. Not required but helps establish a better bond.
  4. Apply a coat of glue to both the rim and the tire.
  5. Allow it to cure. The longer the stronger the bond. Our ideal is 24 hrs. It can be as quick as a few minutes if it has flash cured and isn’t sticky.
  6. Apply a second coat to both the rim and the tire.
  7. Allow second coat to cure.
  8. Place cured tire on to a bare rim and pump to high pressure listed on sidewall of tire or 80-100psi – whatever is lowest.
  9. Apply a slightly thicker coat of glue on the rim.
  10. Pull tire off stretching rim and mount it immediately after applying last coat on rim.
  11. Inflate and align tire.
  12. Roll under weight.
  13. Deflate and roll on broom handle or air hose or other object that has a similar profile to the rim bed.
  14. Re-inflate to lower pressure (20-40 psi for cross and 50-80 psi for road)
  15. Clean excess glue off rim and tire sidewall with VM&P Naptha
  16. Let cure for 24 hrs before riding.
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