Should Mountain Bikes Go Back to Schrader Valves? Jones Bikes Says Yes

Should Mountain Bikes Go Back to Schrader Valves? Jones Bikes Says Yes

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For as long as I can remember, nicer bikes have run Presta valves. They just do. But why is the Presta valve (or French or Sclaverland valve) the accepted standard? Most seem to agree that the motivation for the tiny valves was that they allowed for narrower rims.

In an effort to make bicycles lighter, the rims were made narrower, which meant that drilling a larger hole for a Schrader valve wasn’t the best option for structural integrity. The Presta valve is also supposed to be easier to inflate to higher pressures, which made it a great option for road tires running 100psi or more.

For all their supposed benefits though, the Presta valve also has some inherent issues. The valves can be a bit fragile, but more importantly to a lot of mountain bikers – they don’t play well with tubeless. From clogging, to restricting the amount of airflow for seating tubeless tires, some riders are starting to question the Presta valve’s place in mountain biking.

Is the Presta Valve Better? Is Schrader?

That includes the riders over at Jones Bikes. Jones Bikes run plus-sized tires, so it’s not all that surprising that Jeff was looking for a better valve option. The answer seems fairly obvious. With wide rims, there is plenty of material for drilling a bigger valve hole. And with the new Jones Spec Schrader Valves, you can push a lot of air into the tire to pop the tire in place. The Schrader valves are also supposedly better for running lower tire pressures. The internal spring that keeps the valve closed helps prevent unwanted air loss at low psi.

To illustrate the point, Jeff Jones put together this Flow Test video. Unsurprisingly, the valves with a larger inner diameter performed better. Is it enough to justify the entire industry switching from Presta to Schrader? That remains to be seen, but for Jones customers, the choice has already been made.

All Jones Bikes and Wheels are Now Schrader Valve

From this point on, all Jones bikes and wheels have moved to Schrader valves. Even their carbon C-Rims have moved to the larger valve, partially thanks to their massive 56mm width.

Jones Bikes and wheels with Schrader valve stems:

  • SWB bikes
  • LWB bikes
  • LWB HD/e bikes
  • LWB HD/e E-bikes
  • 56mm wide carbon C-Rims
  • Jones Spec. 50mm wide aluminum rims
  • Jones wheelsets

Available now

If you happen to have a set of Schrader valve compatible rims (or feel comfortable enough to drill out your rim and void your warranty), the valves are available now. You can pick up a set of Jones Spec Schrader valves for $25, and additional valve cores and caps are also available. The valves are made from aluminum and measure 36.5mm long, and weigh in at 24g per pair.

Jones Spec. Schrader Valve Stem Specs

  • Jones Aluminum Schrader valve stems with caps.
  • Removable, replaceable, valve cores.
  • Sealed aluminum valve caps with integrated tools for valve core removal and easy air bleeding.
  • Larger inside diameter for fast and easy tubeless set-up.
  • Stiffer, sturdier, and easier to use than Presta valves.
  • Lower profile base which makes installing tires easier without catching the tire bead on the stem.
  • Beveled aluminum base for faster/higher volume airflow with no clogs.
  • Large stem ring nut with good grip.
  • Replacement valve cores and caps available.
  • Fits 8 mm rim hole.
  • Length: 36.5 mm
  • Weight: 24 g (pair)

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