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Do radials need tubes?


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I’m thinking that since I need to replace the rotted tires on my 1948 Jaguar MK V, I think I’d like the better ride of radial tires. The originals are 670-16 which don’t seem to be available especially in a radial tire. Not sure whether to go to 650-16 or 700-16 white walls but when I look at them on Coker’s site, they show tubes for another $21. I thought radials didn’t use tubes.

 Since I’ll be spending over $1300, I just want to make sure I do it right.

  Any one able to offer a yea or nay on this? 



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That is what Coker says - does not sound to be the best idea and I will leave it at that.


I am driving on Diamond Backs - love them (and on a drop center welded spoke NON-LOCK RING type wire wheels I RTV the drop center and apply a gutter strip in process).


On a non-wire wheel, I just calk around any rivets and have bought both Goodyears and Diamond Backs. 

Edited by John_Mereness (see edit history)
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All tires today are tubeless, I don't think they make tube type anymore. But, they still make tubes for wheels that need them. Wire wheels need tubes.  Have heard of using a sealant on the ends of the spokes but don't know how successful this is. It's best not to use tubes if you don't have to, but if you have to have them they are available. Just make sure if you have radial tires that you get tubes made for radial tires. They are different from those used in bias ply tires.

Edited by Rusty_OToole (see edit history)
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Tires may be tubeless but that does not mean you cannot put tubes in them & they make radial tubes, I carry one in my CTS which did not come with a spare (dumb).


OTOH what we used to do "back in the day" was to paint the rim with lotsa white latex (now would use epoxy) paint and then install the liner while tacky as an additional seal. Worked pretty good.

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23 minutes ago, john hess said:

Just picked up my bias ww tubeless tires .. had them install tubes.  $21 is cheap insurance on riveted wheels.. don't go cheap on a very important item !!!!!!!!!!!!....    John


You "SHOULD" not need tubes.


My 1941 Caddy was not made for tubeless, but they are doing well,

and modern tubes seem not to be the quality of older tubes - especially the "Off-Shore" ones.


IF you decide tu use tubes,

be sure that there are no paper tags vulcanized inside of the tires.

Theye will cause abraision on the tubes and you'll likely have four flat tires within a hundred or so miles -

Ask me how I know !


Also, I've had very good luck, and service from Coker ove the years, and right up until now.

Grreat company, and strong supporter of the hobby, and of AACA, VMCCA, HCCA, CCCA, etc.


Just my 2 cents

Edited by Marty Roth
typo (see edit history)
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I wouldn't call it going cheap, per John Hess's comment. He is correct to be concerned about riveted wheels leaking. They might be fine and they might not. The main reasons to run without tubes are, the tires run cooler (a big deal if you don't want any failures), and the fact that tubes deflate suddenly if you get a puncture, while tubeless tires usually get a "slow leak". Tubes also add rotating mass to the wheel assembly.


If it were me I would only run tubes if the riveted rims leak. On the other hand Tubes are period correct and authentic. To each his own.

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