Punching the wind out of pinch flats

SmartMousse? Sounds like something for my hair? No, it’s a new wheel protection system from MrWolf that positively guarantees an end to punctures.

>>> MTB Mythbusters: Can you fix a puncture with grass?

We’ve heard that one before, haven’t we?

Well yes, Schwalbe released its dual-chamber Schwalbe Procore system in 2014, promising increased grip, improved comfort and far fewero pinch flats and burped tyres. Oh, and then there was Huck Norris in 2016, a cellular foam ribbon inside the tyre, designed to stop the wheel rim from pinching against the sidewalls. And not forgetting Cushcore and Flat Tire Defender. All are still around, but none has exactly taken off.

So what’s different about SmartMousse?

There’s mousse involved. Like Procore, the SmartMousse system has a small air-filled inner tube giving the tyre its shape and suspension. Surrounding that is a ‘C’ section of mousse, or foam, protecting the inner tube from both the wheel’s rim and outside objects like rocks and roots.

Sounds great, what’s the catch?

The weight… each tyre insert weighs between 500 and 640g, depending on which of the three sizes you go for (27.5in for 2.5 or 2.6in width tyres, 27.5in for 2.8in and a 29er version for 2.5 or 2.6in). That’s a whole extra kilo of rolling weight. MrWolf says this weight is negated though because you can run thinner casing sidewalls… besides, this system has been designed for e-bikes, so weight is less of a factor.

Is it any good then?

We can’t tell yet, we’ll bring you a test in due course. The Procore system worked really well on rough and rocky ground, but we weren’t able to run the crazy low pressures we hoped were possible because the tyre rolled because there wasn’t enough support from the sidewalls. The SmartMousse might remedy that, and on e-bikes it could really shine. Price TBC, from mrwolf.bike.