Specialized Bicycles has a new clincher wheelset (the Roval Control 29 Carbon) that lacks that one thing we all think clincher tires need—bead hooks. WTF? We went to Specialized’s headquarters to find out how that’s even possible.
Many 29-inch devotees, citing the increased traction delivered by larger wheels, believe they can run skinnier, faster-rolling tires without sacrificing performance. In a way, this is like putting all-season tires on a monster truck—they might work fine on a dirt road, but would lose their grip while smashing over a row of cars. Likewise, even [...]
XC-290 NINER 29er wheels FULLSPEEDAHEAD.COM $550 The XC-290 NINER wheels represent FSA’s first stab into the 29er market. The first thing most riders will notice about these wheels is that they use proprietary spoke nipples. Normally, non-standard components can be a pain–replacements parts and the proper tools are always hard to find when you need [...]
Syncros’ DS28S are billed as all-mountain wheels—light enough to be ridden all day, yet stout enough to handle any terrain without turning into an aluminum taco. They are respectably light (2,000 grams), but about 100 grams on the hefty side of the all-mountain pre-built wheel market. Then again, these hoops are solid. The 28-millimeter wide, [...]
FSA Gravity Wheels // $590 425-488-8653; ridegravity.com When your friendly neighborhood bike shop can lace any hub to any rim with as many of whatever spoke you choose, a pre-packaged wheelset needs to offer a little more than matching stickers. Enter FSA’s Gravity Wheels. Aside from looking downright moto, they sport straight-pull spokes, which offer [...]
Bontrager Rhythm Elite 29 // $539 920-478-2191; bontrager.com Overgrown 29-inch wheels have a pesky way of upsetting the balancing act bike makers must tackle: creating bikes and parts that are lightweight and durable. Big wheels are heavier, no way around it. But there are advantages to be found. The engineers who created the 1,950-gram Rhythm [...]
WHAT: Cane Creek Terros Disc HOW MUCH: $350 WHERE: www.canecreek.com Leave it to Cane Creek’s design team in the Smoky Mountains to make performance wheels so affordable. With 28 high-tensioned spokes, sealed cartridge bearings and sturdy hubs, the Terros have the features of wheels twice their price. Plus, the all-black components make a low-profile, stealthy [...]
WHAT: Sun Ringle Eight Track WHERE: www.sun-ringle.com HOW MUCH: $565 to $585 The Eight Track, like all Sun Ringle wheels, is littered with options. Consumers can choose from 32 or 36 spokes, 24- or 26-inch rims, quick release or thru-axles and three rear hub spacings–standard 135 millimeter, 150 millimeter or a 165 millimeter. The extra-large, [...]