Stan’s NoTubes has been one of our favorite wheel makers for many reasons: They’re reasonably priced, durable, and oh so tubeless friendly. As matter of fact, we love our set of Avion Disc Pros so much that we made it our benchmark.
Stan’s has been busy lately since launching their Valor, Bravo and Podium SRD wheels last summer.
New for 2018 are three rims plus corresponding wheel builds: A 325 gram 29er only Crest CB7 rim with a 23mm internal width for cross-country racing and the Arch CB7 with a 26mm internal width in both 27.5″ (450 gram) and 29″ (475 gram) made for the all-around trail and enduro crowd.
The heart of the new hoops comes from Stan’s proprietary RiACT lay-up and rim shape featuring a novel high-impact resistant nano-elastomer resin that improves rim strength with the ability to absorb up to 10mm of radial deflection in such Stan believes that it’s not only stronger, but also allows the rim to roll easier while eliminating the dreaded pinch-flats. All three rims feature Stan’s own Bead Socket Technology (BST) where the patented rim geometry secures the bead of the tire (instead of the sidewall) to enable easier tubeless setups, better seal security at lower pressures, and ensure a rounder tire shape for better performance. The low-profile rim is also lighter and stronger too.
As complete stock build, both the Crest and Arch CB7s will come in 28-holes only laced with J-bend (yay!) Sapim Force spokes to Stan’s own Neo hubset with a Durasync six-pawl freehub rolling on triple bearings and a zippy 10° engagement. The precision-machined hubset is compatible with Standard/Boost spacing, all major axles, freehub bodies, and Centerlock/6-bolt.
For better peace of mind, the CB7 rims and wheelsets come with 2-year warranty extendable to 5-years plus lifetime crash replacement after registration.
Both the Crest and Arch CB7 will be available in 28 or 32 hole configurations this February with the price of $600 for one rim and $1,399 for the complete set.
Since the launch of the Vector Pro in 1997, Rolf Prima has always been known for their paired spoke hoops that quickly went to the Tour De France two years later. So popular even Trek licensed the technology for some time into the early Y2Ks.
It’s been 20 years since and a lot has happened since. Fast forward to 2013, Rolf began the project of bringing aluminum rim manufacturing in-house to their Eugene, Oregon headquarters. Their first house-made aluminum went into production in 2014. In 2016, they doubled down on in-house manufacturing and announced they would be making their own carbon rims. Pretty ambitious for a company that employed just a little over a dozen people, but they successfully pulled it off.
With their new expertise in rim manufacturing, Rolf is planning to bring their aluminum and carbon rims under new brand Astral Cycling. They’re still 100% made in Eugene, but they forgo the synonymous paired spokes layout in favor of traditional lacing patterns. So you can now pair these bad boys with your beloved purple Chris King R45s, or whatever you’d like to lace them to really.
Pricing is pretty competitive starting at $135 for the aluminum Wanderlust all the way to $900 for the carbon Prevail road rims. There are models for road, dirt and gravel, as well as touring/tandem in various spoke holes and 12 color decals to choose from. All Astral rims are tubeless compatible and there’s even a page on the website to help with wheel building, should you decide to build your own.
Astral rims are available now through dealers, builders and directly from the company’s website.