Under Test: Panaracer Gravelking 700×32 Tires

GRAVELBIKE.com gravel grinder Panaracer Gravelking tire knobby

Here’s a sneak peek of the 700×32 Gravelking that Panaracer will be releasing in November. The new 32mm model features a more aggressive tread pattern, but retains the natural rubber compound, puncture protection breaker, and supple casing found on the 23mm, 26mm, and 28mm sizes.

Stay tuned…


Under Test: Chrome WARM™ Vest


WarmVest Chrome gravelbike.com gravel grinder urban fixed gear

Image courtesy of Chrome Industries

Chrome’s WARM™ technology offers a unique combination of insulated performance, reversible high-visibility, and classic workwear-inspired looks. The new WARM vest ($150 MSRP) features lightweight poly-fill insulation, a water-resistant ripstop nylon shell, reflective details, and a ventilated yoke.

Stay tuned…


First Impressions: Effetto Mariposa Caffélatex Sealant

If you run tubeless-ready tires, you know the importance of sealant. The magic elixir is crucial for reliable tube-free setups. While you may assume that all sealants are the same, Effetto Mariposa’s Caffélatex stands out from the pack with its synthetic-latex formula and foaming action.


Image courtesy of Cantitoe Road

Unlike traditional latex sealants, Caffélatex does not contain ammonia, making the sealant rim- and tire-friendly. Ammonia is corrosive, and over time, can degrade bare aluminum rims and tire casings. Effetto Mariposa’s sealant also contains microscopic silicate particles (less than 2 microns in diameter), which the company claims move more slowly through holes, allowing the sealing ingredient more time to stop the puncture.

Activated by wheel movement, Caffélatex’s foaming agent (Actifoam™) disperses sealant throughout the tire’s entire internal cavity. According to Effetto Mariposa, this makes Caffélatex more effective against sidewall punctures. We were initially skeptical of the sealant’s foaming abilities, but shaking the translucent container a few times showed just how quickly Caffélatex transforms to its foam state.

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Six-week-old Caffélatex sealant still going strong.

During our review period, we tested Caffélatex with mountain and road tubeless tires. Both new and previously used tires performed equally well. Adding sealant via the Effetto Mariposa-supplied injector was quick and easy, and didn’t require removal of the valves’ cores. For loose-fitting tires, we found that–compared to competitors’ products–less sealant was needed when using Caffélatex. In our testing, we never encountered a puncture that Caffélatex couldn’t seal.

Caffélatex is available in 250 ml ($11.95 MSRP) and 1000 ml ($29.95 MSRP) bottles. Road tires typically need 25 ml to 50ml sealant (each), with mountain tires requiring 50 ml to 100 ml, depending on size. If you’re not quite sure how much sealant is required for a particular setup, Effetto Mariposa has a smartphone app that can calculate the optimal quantity of Caffélatex sealant. The Effetto Mariposa injector has a 100 ml capacity, and retails for $13.95.

Disclosure: Cantitoe Road provided review samples for this article, but offered no other form of compensation in exchange for editorial coverage.