Review: Tubeless repair kits

Tubeless kit
Tubeless repair kit options
The sealant in tubeless tyres plugs most punctures automatically. When the hole is too big for the liquid to seal, you can either fit a spare innertube (check for thorns in the tyre first!) or use a tubeless repair kit, says Cycle magazine editor Dan Joyce

Most of these kits employ sticky strands, variously called ‘worms’, ‘anchovies’ or ‘strings’. You jam one into the hole with a forked tool, usually after cleaning and roughening the hole with a rasp.

Effetto Caffélatex ZOT! Nano £10

No worms here: ZOT! Nano is a ‘polymerisation catalyser’. You inject it into the hole and it makes the sealant coagulate better, so it’ll plug a bigger hole. I was sceptical this would work – especially when the out-rushing air from the holed tyre sprayed ZOT! Nano into my face.

Yet it sealed in moments, with minimal (5% or so) loss of air from a 29×3 tyre. The repair was neater, with no worm tufts, so I used it on a tubeless road tyre with equally successful results.

Caveats? You’ll only get two or three applications per 10ml bottle, it’s messier to use, and it’s only designed to work with Caffélatex sealant – although it may work with others.


MaXalami Maxipack £15.95

Like other tubeless kits, MaXalami Maxipack has a rasp, a forked applicator tool and a number of worms. There are two sizes here: 1.5 and 3.5mm diameter, so you can pick whichever suits the hole.

The worms are tenaciously sticky and some force is required to get them off the backing sheet, but at least you don’t need to apply glue. The repair process is quick and easy.

After holing my 29×3 tyre with a bradawl, rasping it and jamming in the worm, I’d lost only 5% of its pressure. Two long tufts are left sticking out of the tyre. These will eventually fall off, but I’d trim them to stop them catching on the frame until then.

Packing a penknife means you can cut each worm in half lengthways before use, so you can make twice as many repairs.

Weldtite Tubeless Tyre Repair Kit £7.49

This works like the MaXalami kit except there’s one size of worm and two extra repair steps. You’re meant to glue the (already sticky) worm before inserting it into the tyre, and you cut the tufts to within 3mm of the tyre with the Stanley knife provided.

I found the knife useful (see above). The glue should make the worm more secure but I couldn’t detect any practical difference, and the extra time taken by glueing and by forcing the one-size-only worm into a too-small hole meant that the tyre lost more air – around 50% by the time I’d finished.


The repairs from all three kits have held up well; I’m still using my test tyres. The Weldtite kit is the best value, the ZOT! Nano is better for road tubeless, and the MaXalami kit is the easiest to use and the least messy. I pack the MaXalami kit, plus the Weldtite knife.

First published in Cycle magazine, October/November 2018 issue. All information correct at time of publishing.

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Other options

Genuine Innovations Tubeless Tyre Repair Kit £5.99

Five tyre worms and an applicator tool. There’s no rasp, but it’s debatable whether you need one.

Sahmurai Sword £24.99 

Sahmurai Sword is the first tubeless kit available for bicycles. The applicator tool and rasp fit into your handlebar ends, which is neat, but you’ll need somewhere to store the tyre worms.