Schwalbe Releases New Lightweight Aerothan Tubes

Oct 8, 2020
by Mike Kazimer  

Schwalbe has introduced a new line of lightweight tubes, with options available for everything from mountain bikes to road bikes. The Aerothan tubes aren't made of rubber – instead, they're constructed from a thermoplastic polyurethane, which is said to be more puncture resistant than butyl and latex tubes while offering very low rolling resistance. At 87 grams for the 29” mountain bike version, the weights are impressively low, and the tubes also pack down to a much smaller size than a traditional tube.

Schwalbe produced a batch of lightweight thermoplastic tubes back in 2015, but they weren't satisfied with the durability of those blue tubes, so they went back to the drawing board. According to Felix Schäfermeier, Schwalbe Product Manage, “For five years, we have tested the material in cooperation with BASF and improved it to perfection, exploring a completely new area of technology. This was the only way to surpass apparent obstacles of wanting to combine minimal weight and greatest puncture protection.”



While the weight might be low, that's not exactly the case with the price, at around €28 for the mountain bike versions. Still, considering the weight and space savings it's easy to imagine picking up one to strap to a bike or toss in a pack in case of a flat that plugs can't fix. The tubes are made in Germany, and are 100% recyclable.




More info: schwalbe.com


150 Comments

  • 190 3
 Give Schwalbe another 5 years and there gonna start making condoms..
  • 274 1
 As long as they have supple sidewalls and great puncture protection, I'll buy them. Just need to figure out what thread pattern the missus wants.
  • 75 1
 the perfect gift for the biker who has everything except for kids, and wants to keep it that way.
  • 16 0
 Or front derailleur
  • 39 1
 Yeah but the knobs will tear off the first time you use it.
  • 152 0
 HAHH, "nobby dic"
  • 63 0
 @Trudeez: "the first time you use it" ... hold up
  • 29 1
 just hope they don't fill it with Stan's milk
  • 3 2
 @LaurensVR: she ain’t fussy lol
  • 2 0
 @wowbagger: hahaha touché!
  • 8 6
 if they are ass god as their snake skin id stay away. if you don't like to get 5 holes in one ride.
  • 22 0
 @vitality:
Ass God Snake Skin condoms. Coming soon to a rear near you.
  • 5 1
 Or should I say "...in a rear near you"?
  • 7 0
 I'll take the Double Down version.
  • 7 0
 @LaurensVR: It depends if you are sending it on a muddy rut, or sticking to the flow trail.
  • 23 0
 Sidewall tear and sealant leak could lead to 18 years of down time.
  • 1 0
 @Gerlewis: worlds 2020 style lmao
  • 4 0
 Gives new meaning to the “Rocket Ron”
  • 4 0
 @LaurensVR: magic mary?
  • 4 0
 @LaurensVR: JUMBO JIM
  • 2 0
 @LaurensVR: dirty mary!!
  • 3 0
 @Tamasz: I also like a nice set of Double Ds.
  • 5 0
 @LaurensVR: assegai in the rear?
  • 6 0
 I stick with tubeless, with the vasectomy.
  • 3 0
 @LaurensVR: Just get snipped - you'll thank me later.
  • 4 0
 Most of y'all would need the Rapid Rob.
  • 5 0
 @JSTootell: never heard of the vasectomy, is that a Continental?
  • 2 0
 @LaurensVR: Magic Mary of course
  • 5 0
 @suspended-flesh: Marathon Plus.
  • 1 0
 Schwalbe is going to make a nobby nic version of it.
  • 2 0
 @wowbagger: Goodyears
  • 2 0
 This article has the sickest comments I've seen in a long time! Don't be hard on Schwalbe
  • 1 1
 @LaurensVR: give me a call,and I'll tell ya
  • 80 0
 "improved to perfection"... Every product manager's quote when R&D went over budget.
  • 23 4
 Tubolito, the tube that never works the moment you need it! Big Grin
  • 42 0
 Mine got me home last week. Rode it back through rock gardens the same way I ride tubeless, no sweat. Took it out at home, cleaned it off, rolled it back up for next emergency. I went w/ their beefier 85g model (not the S-Tubo). Still weighs only half as much as butyl tube I used to pack. I've spent a lot more than $25 to knock 85g off the bike in the past. No complaints here!
  • 6 0
 I'm still hoping that my MTB tubolito works when I need it! I was also carrying one on my road bike in case of tubeless failure and when I needed to use it, it seemed to have picked up like 3 holes from just being in the saddlebag for a few months! It was a long walk back home...
  • 6 0
 The two times I have had to use tubolitos they have worked just fine. The only issue I had was pump comtatibility as the the valve stem has a sharp edge and is a really tight fit in a One-up pump. A slight chamfer would be great.
I have flattend once (no tube would have survived) and fixed the tube with vinyl repair for pool toys.
  • 2 0
 I got one that's on its second go around. Great product!
  • 1 0
 Mine work perfect after 200 kms
  • 3 2
 I guess the spare tube is never where I thought I needed to save weight... I will leave the trail beers at home if I need to save weight.
  • 2 2
 @adrennan: it’s for XC racers, not trail riders. I carry a big old tube on the trail bike, and a Tubolito for races only.
  • 9 0
 @Auto-XFil: i switch to light beer for races to save weight
  • 1 1
 Are they that bad? I carry a Dad-pack with a couple tubes in it (and everything else) and def need something smaller, lighter. Are the Tubolito's pretty crappy for a backup tube (everyone is tubeless).
  • 4 0
 @Svinyard: NO, the opposite. They are great as backup tube for every day carry in tubeless systems!
For race backup I would rate ease of installation and tubolitos are a bit different and get super slippery with sealant so do a few tube changes to get the feel how they handle differently. I would say a butyl is faster for me still. The tubolitos dont really stretch back after inflation so they handle differently the second time you use them also.
  • 1 0
 @feeblesmith: thank you!
  • 1 0
 I only ride tubolito on my bike, a dj. No problems. Cheapest pound you can drop off your bike if you ride tubes
  • 1 0
 @eyeslide: which model fits the 26 DJ? I want to drop a lb off of mine!
  • 10 0
 I think I remember some very similar tubes from them like 5 years ago, waited for them but never seen them on shops in real. Carrying 27.5" 45g Tubolito under my seat. Just for the cases sealant wouldn't fix the hole.
  • 1 0
 Same here
  • 2 0
 I used to run Latex tubes, the were about 100g I think
  • 9 0
 It "can be" recycled but it won't be. Butyl can be recycled too and mostly isn't but there is a much bigger waste stream there that would make recycling more scalable. Plastic recycling is currently a crock.
  • 5 0
 Now, you get my attention, we've been struggling so much to keep air in the tires with only some marginal progress and without real drastic changes in material and design. it would be interesting to see a test...
  • 6 0
 pretty sure most sales will go to the tubeless-rider market since these will be light and small to carry. same (real-world) puncture protection as a £4 tube.
  • 1 1
 Schwalbe already made the EVO Aerothan like 5 years ago, but it barely hit the shops and got discontinued pretty much immediately. In the meantime the brand Tubolito has succesfully filled that gap in the market.
  • 10 4
 that video hurt my ears...goddamn schwalbe, dont play the "iam zee sherman" thing..get someone whos fluent in a language or can perform infront of a camera Big Grin
  • 2 0
 ....they want to reinforce stereotypes...
  • 2 0
 listen to the DH Frenchies speak English and this guy will sound like a native speaker... it's ok to have an accent... heck you would have a hard time understanding a guy from Vienna, even though it's supposedly still German, what they speak over there
  • 2 0
 To be honest, when I hear something is German I immediately trust it more than if it wasn't, so for me it's working.
  • 1 0
 Can you really blame them? Flying someone in from abroad just to shoot a Promo video in these days?
  • 1 0
 @kiribati: theres ppl in germany that speak without accent Big Grin
Well it seems to work for most ppl out there. buy zeee sherman produktzzss
  • 7 2
 Id like to see companies being more up front about the environmental impact of their product. For instance is the new material better or worse than rubber in terms of impact?
  • 11 0
 Sometimes the use of a rubber can have a negative impact on the environment on short term, but a positive impact on the planet on long term Wink
  • 7 1
 Schwalbo-lito
  • 2 0
 I don't know but TPU have a bad relationship with water/humidity (even the ones with Hydrolysis stabilization).
If you tape it under the seat or on the frame be sure tu put it in a sealed bag
  • 4 0
 Must be the cheaper gram per ratio weight removal once you are fully equiped...
  • 1 0
 How do you guys remove the tubeless valve trailside to install the tube? I have to use pliers to install the locknut, so I doubt I’d be capable of removing it without pliers. I don’t see people carrying pliers around everywhere...
  • 2 0
 You're using a crappy tubeless valve then! the tapered valves like a generic 'Stans' get stuck really easily, but a good quality DT Swiss Valve (which have an oversized alloy rim nut) can always be untightened and removed by hand. Go ahead and switch your valves, problem solved, you're welcome ;-).
  • 1 0
 @nzandyb: I'm using bontrager wheels and their proprietary rim strip and valves at the moment. I might give the DT valves a try once I destroy my rim or something.
  • 1 0
 @MaplePanda: Fun fact: Bontrager rims meet ISO standards of tubeless compliance WITHOUT the plastic strip installed.... throw that strip out, install a couple layers of proper tubeless tape and good valves. I say this as the previous Service Manager at a Trek store. The Plastic strip is NOT your friend.
  • 1 0
 @nzandyb: Yea, I actually used to be using the Orange Seal valves with gorilla tape. Worked fine, until I needed to replace a broken spoke, and trek installed the plastic strip and their valve without telling me. I was like “why not just change the front wheel to their rim strip while I’m here?” I do like how solidly the valve is held in place (the valve no longer wiggles side to side while pumping), but you guys have presented some pretty good reasons to switch back.
  • 2 0
 @MaplePanda: There are a couple of other valves on the market that come with pretty cool concave plastic washers which stop this 'valve wiggle' you are talking about. Gorilla tape is similar to the plastic strip in terms of adding diameter to the rim, but 2 layers of Stans tape or DT Swiss tape (or actually any proper tubeless tape) in these wheels will work great. Trek seems to make a big deal out of saying their wheels aren't tubeless compatible without the plastic strip... but I'd love someone at Trek to give an official reason as to why this is, because in my VERY extensive experience with Bontrager wheels tubeless tape tends to be more reliable and more user friendly.
  • 1 0
 Just ordered some tubolitos yesterday... I've never used the tube attached to my bike, so thought a smaller one would be more convenient. I'm a bit of a roady, and a lot of people say they're much more puncture resistant than normal tubes. Comments here seem to suggest otherwise though. Tubes for me are strictly worst case scenario. Chances are I'd rather walk for ten minutes and go home To fix anything I couldn't plug or ride down.
  • 1 0
 Just saw a review on road.cc where the guy tried to patch one of these and found it impossible. Three patches just blew off the tube within minutes. Pretty expensive for a one-time-use product. Hopefully Schwalbe comes out with a better patch soon. On the bright side, it didn’t seem to rapidly seep air pressure like a Tubolito.
  • 5 1
 How is this any different than Tublito tubes released a while back now ?
  • 131 0
 it's transparent, so you can see the air inside
  • 2 0
 They probably just bought a license, like they do with a lot of stuff
  • 5 0
 Same design concept, same MSRP. Hopefully this will lead to better availability and competition w/ Tubolito for better street prices.
  • 3 1
 Maybe they are made so they don’t just split along the seam the first time they are inflated
  • 1 0
 delete
  • 1 0
 S-Tubo from Tublito is 45 g (29")
  • 1 0
 @makkelijk: The Aerothan tubes were first announced in 2015, this new version is patented and hand-made in house at Schwalbe in Germany... But fair comment since things like the Tire booster and rim tape are licensed.
  • 1 1
 No relation between the production cost and sales price. same a Tubulito. After all we use it only as spare option to ride back home in case of a severe puncture, get an almost free thin rubber tube, it should work as it did in the past 100 years.
  • 1 0
 The guy in the video said the tubes have the environmental benefit of not using using carbon black. What's bad about the carbon black that's put in in rubber? It's not like it's burned and turned into CO2.
  • 1 0
 Feels like another thing il have to wait months to even see. Still no sign of any big Betty's coming in stock and we are months down the line from when they were announced
  • 1 0
 mmhhh... I don't know about that... I am quite pleased with the tubeless setup... as an emergency tube, think the normal rubber tube will probably do?
  • 1 1
 I wonder if this Evo Aerothan tube will compete against Tubolito (which has been proven to be reliable over the years), or if it will dissapear just as fast again as it did several years ago.
  • 3 1
 so technically it's just clear tubolito??
  • 1 0
 Are these heavier or about the same as Tubolito?
  • 3 1
 Will this leak like the orange tubilitio ones?
  • 2 0
 Didn't they first show these like 3 years ago?
  • 1 0
 They did indeed, but dissapeared before they hit the shelves.
  • 1 0
 good stuff, be easy to carry....
  • 10 13
 OK Johan, ve need you to do ze veeding fur dis ad vertisment so zat ve have die perfekt combonation of our language and ders. You see ve understand zat our produkts sell better in ze other parts of ze vorld when we use a thick accent. Ales klar?
  • 22 1
 His English is bloody incredible. Wish I spoke any other language even a quarter as good as that. What’s wrong with you?
  • 3 0
 This hurts to read xD
  • 10 0
 @Lloydmeister How's your German, bud?
  • 5 2
 i'm german (and speak three other languages fluently) and i totally agree with this statement. Working on your accent when talking a foreign tongue is as important as learning words and grammar, whether you're british and learning spanish or chinese and learning finnish.

Learning how to pronounce th etc. is no big deal.

anyways i don't like how english speaking and french people always assume everyone understands them everywhere, actually i don't like people being abroad always expecting everyone to understand them...
  • 4 0
 @Mocope: hey man, also being german let me contradict Wink To hell with th and all considerations about mastering the pronunciation of another language. The guy in the video probably is one of or the major person(s) in developing this product and thumbs up to Schwalbe that they let him explain it and not some marketing person with perfect english skills but no idea what they're talking about!
  • 1 1
 @Rumpelhumpelheld: yep you're right, better have someone with experience explaining the product than someone with no knowledge. Anyways, even people working in marketing can have profound knowledge of the product and also working in engineering in r&d is no reason for not speaking english well. And it's not like everyone in marketing speaks perfect english.
  • 1 0
 Will the standard mtb tube be good for WT?
  • 1 0
 Just ordered my new Slash... Cant wait to jam this into my Twat ...box
  • 4 2
 Tubes, how quaint.
  • 1 0
 Do the valve stems snap off on first contact like Tubolito's?
  • 1 0
 Remember demon semen chain lube?
  • 1 0
 I JUST bought 2 tubolitos mans wtf
  • 1 0
 This could make my Tannus Armour setup ligher than Cushcore tubeless.
  • 1 0
 Clicks on article. Braces for price.
  • 1 0
 ribbed for your pleasure!!!!!!!
  • 1 0
 Riding a mullet, you have to carry two of these or just a 27,5" butyl...
  • 7 7
 28 euros!!!!! It’s cheaper to go tubeless
  • 14 1
 ya must be one of these new covid cyclists who dont know the first thing about tubeless..
  • 4 1
 @a-d-e: "Still, considering the weight and space savings it's easy to imagine picking up one to strap to a bike or toss in a pack in case of a flat that plugs can't fix"
  • 1 0
 @a-d-e: how did you get to that conclusion?
  • 8 1
 @Bigwill13: Tubeless isn't a one-time investment.
  • 1 0
 @shredjekyll: it’s not exactly expensive to set up and maintain though is it and going tubeless has more benefits than running some lightweight condoms. 56 euros to get a puncture and have to replace them is ridiculous. Each to their own.
  • 1 0
 @Bigwill13: Depends, it can become pricy. Some tire/rim combos are quite difficult to seat without a fancy pump or air compressor. Good sealant isn't exactly cheap either. Plus, it REALLY sucks when you break a spoke or nipple when running tubeless.

I am currently running 3 wheelsets on my slayer and they are all set up tubeless, but I would love some good tubes.
  • 2 0
 @shredjekyll: it’s just tape sealant and valves. Presuming you already have tubeless rims and tyres which most bikes have as standard. I run magic Mary’s super gravity on dt 471s and it’s literally fit and forget, well for 6 months then Chuck some stans in and you’re good to go. In that time I would probably have ruined 3 tubes. Don’t get me wrong, a light tube that performs as well as tubeless would be great but it just doesn’t work as well no way near as much grip in my opinion.
  • 2 0
 @Bigwill13: You are correct, but only because you are referencing one of the most bullet proof tires ever made, coupled with one of the strongest rims... You're smart, a lot of people are not and hence their tubeless set ups cost them a fortune in maintenance.
  • 2 0
 @nzandyb: and to think I got called a “new covid cyclist” Smile they just work so well. I had the tyres on arc 30 rims before which also works very well but the rims are made from cheese so didn’t last long.
  • 5 7
 Either Schwalbe bought Tubolito, licensed Tubolito, or straight copied Tubolito.
  • 18 1
 No one accused butyl tube manufacturers of copying each other.
  • 3 2
 hope not. tubolito were useless.
  • 4 0
 Actually Schwalbe was first with the Evo Aerothan several years ago, but they discontinued it immediately. Only after that Tubolito came onto the market.
  • 2 1
 @R-M-R: butyl tube patents ran out decades ago.
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