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Dynaplug Racer tubeless tyre plug review

21 Apr 2020
Verdict:

If you run tubeless tyres, the Dynaplug Racer effectively negates the need to carry a spare tube while riding

Cyclist Rating: 
Price: 
£34.99
For 
Well-made • Compact • Effective • Light weight
Against 
Dual end caps should differ

The Dynaplug Racer is a tubeless tyre repair device. While the sealant used in tubeless tyres fixes many small punctures without the rider having to lift a finger (or even noticing), some cuts can be so severe that the sealant needs a bit of help to fill the gap.

This is where repair tools like the Dynaplug Racer come into play. They deposit a plug into the cut, which fills the hole entirely, or at least enough for the sealant to close up the rest of the breach. The plug then essentially becomes part of the tyre and the rider can carry on as if it weren’t there.

Design

Aside from Dynaplug, there are several other tubeless repair devices on the market but their design is typically based around a pronged tool - not unlike a tiny cattle prod - that is used to pierce the tyre and deposit the rubber plug material before being removed.

Dynaplug has patented an innovative design that combines piercing element and plug element into one component - a brass or aluminium bullet tip attached to a viscoelastic rubber-impregnated cord.

Buy now from Evans Cycles for £34.99

The plug is housed in a hollow stainless steel shaft on the tool itself. The whole ensemble is inserted into the tyre then pulled out, which leaves the plug stuck in the tyre. The cord of the plug bonds with the tyre and sealant to fix the puncture.

The excess can then be trimmed off or left to wear away over time. I found after trimming it down a touch, the excess cord mushed into the tread of the tyre fairly smoothly after two or three subsequent rides.

Dynaplug offers several iterations of its system which it says are optimised for different riding applications. The Racer is Dynaplug’s slimmest, lightest option being just 90mm long, 12mm wide and weighing just 23g.

The Racer’s unobtrusive form means it holds just two plugs (other Dynaplug designs hold more) but provided you are organised with replacing any plugs you use I didn’t find this is to be an issue.

Buy now from Evans Cycles for £34.99

Requiring more than two plugs on one ride would be a case of extreme bad luck. In my experience, one plug has been enough to quickly and reliably fill any hole that has been too large for the sealant to cope with.

In any case, should the regular plug fail to seal the puncture, the other end of the Racer houses Dynaplug’s ‘Megaplug’ which has a blunter aluminium tip and a woven rubber cord three times the thickness of the normal plug.

If the hole is too big to be plugged by one of these, I’d say the tyre is too badly damaged to be safely repaired (or an inner tube safely installed) anyway - consign it to the rubbish bin and call a taxi.

Use

The body of the tool is machined from a solid billet of 6061 aluminium which, combined with the stainless steel shafts that house the plugs, lends the Racer a sturdy, built-to-last feel reminiscent of a K-Edge computer mount. It goes much of the way to justifying its price tag.

At £34.99, it costs more than most other designs on the market - for example Lezyne’s tool is £20 and Lifeline’s solution is just £4.99 - but I think the tool’s construction quality and how easy its innovation plug system is to use make the Dynaplug Racer worth the outlay.

The action of inserting the plug is very slick: it is as easy and effective as Dynaplug advertises. On the occasions I’ve needed to use the Racer it was a simple case of removing the tool from my seat pack, where it takes up next to no space (the Racer goes equally unnoticed in a jersey pocket), carefully jabbing the tyre and topping up the air with a mini pump.

The seal was instant and consistently reliable, such that I have become confident leaving the house for a ride without an inner tube. The combination of tubeless sealant and the Dynaplug Racer covers the overwhelming majority of puncture-related issues that are likely to occur on any given outing.

Find out more: madison.co.uk

The only small practical gripe I have with the Dynaplug Racer is that both ends of the tool look the same - it would save a little time and faff knowing which plug (regular or mega) was housed under which cap.

To its credit, Dynaplug recognises the shortcoming and for now recommends placing an O-ring on one cap to differentiate it, or swapping one cap with a riding buddy with a Racer of a different colour. I’m told the next generation of Racer is likely to provide a solution.

It would be good to see if Dynaplug could circumvent the issue in future but equally it would be no big deal if the brand doesn't. At its core the Dynaplug Racer is such an excellent product that any foibles that may come with it are very easily forgiven.

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