Recently here at the Mtbr headquarters, we had a visit from Pius Kobler, who is the Co-founder/CEO/CTO of a Swiss brand called milKit. If you attended the recent Sea Otter Classic, you might have seen them there showing their new product, the milKit tubeless tire valves and maintenance kit.
What is milKit?
At the heart of the kit is a unique valve designed for tubeless tires that has a one-way rubber flap at the bottom (the end that sticks inside the tire). This design works in conjunction with the milKit syringe and hoses to make measuring and refilling easy. It also provides a quick, clean and easy way for riders to check the quality of the sealant in their tires and to add the correct amount of new sealant. With the patented design (patented in Switzerland with US extensions), the tubes feed into the tire through the valve and the rubber flap keeps the air pressure from escaping.
Key to the ease of the system is the hose that is equipped with a petcock. This makes securing the fluid easy and secure and ensures that the sealant won’t leak out all over the place. We also think it’s pretty slick how the whole system (hoses, valves) all fit into the body of the oversized syringe to make storing and traveling with milKit convenient.
For the purpose and design of milKit, Kobler explains, “We wanted to create something that was clean, safe and simple. The milKit system is fast because it allows you to measure and refill sealant without deflating the tire. The milKit system is clean because the rubber flap prevents sealant from filling and blocking the valves. The milKit system is reliable because you don’t have to guess how much sealant is left (if any). You can extract the old and put in exactly as much as you need. And also important, milKit is easy to use and easy to clean up. Just rinse the syringe and tubes with water.
How does it work?
Check out this video below to see how it works in action.
We had a few additional questions for Kobler:
Mtbr: Will this work with road tubeless?
Kobler: Yes, it will work with road tubeless but you must make sure that you lower the pressure in the tire first. Otherwise, there is risk of the top of the syringe to shoot out and make a mess.
Mtbr: Will you there be longer stem options available in near future?
Kobler: Yes, we are currently working on 55mm and 75mm length stems for deeper profile rims.
Mtbr: Do you guys have any sponsored riders/racers using your system?
Kobler: Yes, World Champion, World Cup Champion and Olympic Medalist Christoph Sauser is using milKit.
Mtbr: Anything else you want to let people know?
Kobler: Yes, it is interesting to note that when we started talking to riders using tubeless, we were surprised at the number of riders who bought bikes with tubeless tires and didn’t realize that the sealant is something that they need to maintain. This may not apply to the well-educated Mtbr enthusiast audience, but for others (and those working in the shops) it is a real concern. Also, we found that it was hard for riders to keep track of when their sealant should be checked or changed. Of course, this varies depending on rider, terrain, temperature, tire/wheel brand, frequency of rides and many other factors. But most riders don’t keep track of their sealant until there is a problem. Since milKit makes it easier to check, mountain bikers will be more likely to keep track of this. And lastly, the other problem we saw was that riders would just add new sealant to their old sealant and mix it up. This creates problems as the old sealant won’t mix as well with the new sealant and should be removed when it gets oily. Our milKit system can help ease all of these issues.
Where can I get it?
Currently, for US riders, the milKit system is available online through Amazon. It is sold in two versions, the milKit Compact which is the complete kit with Syringe, tubes and two valves for $55.95. It is also available in a Valve Pack (just the two valves) for $29.95. Kobler is sensitive to the fact that US bikers might also like to buy this in store at their local bike shops, so they are currently working on getting US distribution in place with several of the top bicycle parts and accessories suppliers.
We have received some samples and we are testing out the milKit system right now and we will report back with a full product review in the near future.
For more information visit www.milkit.bike.