ERW Airless Tires

According to the guy who filmed this -
“Hot off the presses is this little short I created for a local Colorado inventor who has an Airless Wheel hooking up to roads all over the region. Each one of the prototypes is hand crafted at this stage and he is seeking financial help to Finish the product.” - June 2012
So it doesn’t sound like something we’ll be buying anytime soon.

I don’t see any tire compression in the video. I wonder if this shows any promise for unicycles.

I doubt it shows any promise for bicycles. Inventors of airless tyres generally don’t seem to understand why we have air in our tyres in the first place - the performance of them is always significantly poorer. Particularly with the advent of tubeless systems with sealant which has all but eliminated the problem airless tyres are looking to solve.

No compression = no bueno.

they look cool but how much do they cost

The Energy Return Wheel (ERW) is supposed to return more energy than pneumatic tires. Who know if the claim is true.

If each one is hand-crafted, couldn’t we ask for a custom 36 to test?


It’s answer to something that’s not really a problem; four flats in four years.

For folks who live places where thorns cause flats, they can tubeless. I saw a similar tire for a car, not sure if it ever went anywhere.

There’s really no way to cut weight, the structure required to support the tire equal to that of a pneumatic tire is going be considerably more than the same tire in pneumatic. The only potential savings is in going tube less but then we can run tubeless now, so the savings is minimal.

Therre’s not a lot of money in tires, they’re expensive to make due to tooling, up front costs for a mold are ~ 10k, all of which has to be covered before any profit is made, then add in shipping, overhead, profit…and if it bombs you eat it all.

I’d be happy to test one for him :smiley:

Also, he needs to seal up the sides with a thin folm to keep out the gunk and water, otherwise that sucker is dry ride only tire, which ain’t gonna sell to most folks.

The biggest market for something like that is in touring, tandems, city riding, urban rentals, where mud is not an issue and flats would be really annoying. Street riders are far less picky about tread patterns and pressure response, they just want long lasting treads that work in all weather.

I’d think there’d be a market for these with long haul truckers, but maybe heat build up is a problem?

These kind of wheels work well where weight is not a concern and speed is not a factor. I have seen quite a few “airless tires” on skid-steers (bobcats) and other small equipment.

I can’t see them replacing pneumatic tires on anything fast and sporty any time soon. Stranger things have happened though.