The carbon rim bandwagon is crowded and is still taking all comers. It’s getting hard to find brands that stand out, but Knight Composites happens to be one.
Knight uses a manufacturing technique unprecedented among composite rims. Sheets of carbon would usually be compressed and bonded using an inflatable bladder, but Knight uses a different process normally applied only in frame production. Their compression comes from an expanding EPS foam which puts greater and more even pressure on the carbon, eliminating bubbles and other imperfections that can lead to weak spots. This allows them to construct a stronger rim with thinner walls, making for a more compliant ride and, of course, a lighter wheel.
You can order your Knight wheels with DT 240, Chris King, or as of this year, Project 321 hubs. Manufactured in Fresno, California, Project 321 hubs are built around a driver with 6 magnetically sprung pawls, engaging two at a time for a whopping 216 points of engagement. If you like loud hubs, they’ll be music to your ears. If you don’t, Project 321 offers pawls with a different shape to moderately lessen the drag and significantly turn down the volume. You can even finely tune the volume based on how much or how little of their chosen Dumonde Tech Freehub Oil is added. And for heavier, tandem, or E-bike riders, there’s a different 6-pawl driver that engages three pawls at a time for 144 points of engagement.
Knight wheels range from $2199 to $2599 and are available in 29 race, 29 trail, 29 enduro, 27.5 trail, 27.5 enduro, and a light weight 27 plus version. We went home with a set of their 27.5 enduros, so stay tuned for our take on how they ride.
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