At 1,248 grams complete with tape and valves, Roval’s new Control SL LTD 29er hoops are obviously light but they’re actually lighter than most road wheels.
But being light can only get you so far. Durability and ride quality are just as important. This is especially so for mountain bikes where components are consistently, well, abused.
Starting at the 358-gram asymmetric hookless rim with a 29mm internal and a 4mm flat top at the top of the rim wall that is said to reduce pinch-flats by as much as 22% while the generous internal width increases tire volume and control, plus 29% more impact strength. The rims are then laced with 24 DT Swiss Competition Race spokes accompanied with Pro Lock alloy nipples and equally light Roval hubs running on the ever-dependable DT EXP internals with a 54T star ratchet for a snappy 6.67 degree engagament. It also rolls on sealed ceramic bearings.
What about durability? The prototype wheels have been thoroughly field tested in the grueling World Cups. Also included is Roval’s lifetime warranty and two years of no fault crash replacement policy free of charge. How’s that for an extra peace of mind?
Since its founding in 2007, ENVE’s brand has always been synonymous with the upper echelon of quality which also meant higher-priced. The price tag obviously didn’t put a damper on its popularity as they are consistently one of the most sought after hoops.
But the markets have changed quite a bit since ’07, so what if ENVE can bring its state-of-the-art carbon know how to a friendlier price point? Is going offshore going to be the answer?
ENVE’s latest release, the Foundation Collection, is the Utah company’s answer to the ever-changing landscape: $1,600, made in the USA hoops for road and mountain. This ain’t no April fools joke.
Composed of three models, the Foundation collection is meant to compete in the middle segment. Think of it as the Ultegra/Force/Chorus of carbon wheels, complementing the flagship SES/M series, along with plenty of tech that go into each set. This is by no means an older, repurposed design, nor a compromised, simply cheaper design. Instead, ENVE achieved the price point by increasing its manufacturing efficiency. Simply put, the Foundation Collection is not a water-downed ENVE.
The three models are: ENVE 45 & 65 for road/tri, and AM30 for mountain.
First, the rims. The series features ENVE’s signature molded spokes and valve stem holes which ENVE claims makes a stronger structure by eliminating the need to drill, thus cutting the carbon fiber.
The hookless, tubeless optimized rims come with an anti-pinch flat design built in with a wider leading edge designed to improve as much as 30% in impact resistance and 60% improvement against pinch flats. For extra peace of mind, each wheelset is backed with ENVE’s lifetime incident protection and five year factory warranty.
The road/tri part of the collection comes in either 45mm or 65mm tall rims measuring 28mm externally with a 21mm internal rim width. Both wheels are disc brake only with 24 Sapim CX Sprint spokes on both front and rear. As for the aero profiles of the rim, ENVE is said to be taking cues from data collected from the SES line, minus the front/rear special rim profile but still competitive similar or better than its competition. Both wheelsets are optimized for 25mm-28mm tubeless tires, but one could also run an innertube only with a tubeless tire. The 45 is said to weigh 1,541 grams complete and 1,621 grams for the taller 65.
Both the 45 and 65 will also be built with its own Foundation Road Alloy hubset (124g front, 252g rear with Shimano or 232g with SRAM XDR) featuring a 40t ratchet. They are center-lock only with full-contact sealed NTN steel bearings throughout. A Campy-compatible version is also available.
As for the Trail/enduro-focused AM30, there will be a 29” and a 27.5” version.
Diameter difference withstanding, the 3mm asymmetric rim will be 20mm tall with a 30mm (internal) and 39mm (external) width, with 28 double-butted Sapim Race spokes front and rear threaded to black brass external nipples paired with Industry Nine’s excellent 1/1 hubset.
The AM30 weighs 1,852 grams. The full collection is available today.
Enduro strong and Cross Country light is what Boyd chose to highlight on its refreshed Ridgeline carbon mountain bike wheels, but there’s obviously more to it than strength and weight on the flagship mtb-wheels from a family-run wheel company.
Here’s what you’ll get for a competitive $1,700:
New rims with an increased internal rim width from 26mm to 30mm for improved traction and handling. Optimized for 2.3-2.7” tires, the new asymmetric (three millimeters offset) hookless rims also feature a three millimeter wall thickness for better impact protection. Tubeless ready, of course. The new rims carry a 36mm external width and 26mm depth.
Available in 27.5 (440 grams per rim) and 29″ (475 grams)
The wheels will be built with 28 spokes, two cross up front and 32 spokes, 3 three cross for the rear with aero stainless Pillar Wing 21 spokes and external brass nipples.
In the center is Boyd’s new trick Tripel hubset. Forged 6061 aluminum shells, six simultaneously engaging pawls with three teeth each. That equates to a 102 teeth drive-ring with quick 3.5 degree engagement that is also low-drag during coasting.
As for hub spacing, the Ridgelines are available in traditional QRs, 15×100/12×142, boost, and super boost. The tool-free rear freehub can also be quickly swapped between standard Shimano, SRAM XD, as well as the new Shimano Micro Spline that are slowly gaining traction.
The Ridgeline 29 weighs at a claimed 1,825g per set (825g front, 1000g rear). The 27.5 version is 1,755g (790g front, 965g rear). Both are weighed with standard Boost hub.
Both are available today along with lifetime warranties and lifetime crash replacement.
Last fall ENVE offered its first ever trade-in/trade up program, and the popular program is back and better than ever.
While this year’s program remains largely the same where one will receive a $900 credit for trading in existing Enve wheels, or $600 for other brand’s carbon offerings from November 19, 2019 through January 3, 2020, ENVE is extending the offer to alloy wheels for a limited time.
That’s right. Starting Wednesday, Nov. 27, 2019 through Dec. 2, 2019, your old tired aluminum wheels are now eligible for a $600 credit towards your next set of Enve hoops. More info here.
Always wanted to upgrade to ENVE hoops? Well, ENVE just made it easier thanks to its new trade-in/trade-up your existing carbon wheels for their latest offerings, a first for the Utah-based composite specialist since its founding in 2007.
With the new upgrade program, current ENVE owners will get a $1,000 trade-in credit for their ENVE wheels while non-ENVE branded carbon wheelsets will get a $700 credit towards a new set of ENVE wheels. Be it the M Series for mountain bikes, the SES line for the road, or the G series for gravel/cross, the choice is yours.
Also worth noting, the wheels will come with full factory warranty for incident protection at no additional charge, as well as impact damage to original owners.
The offer begins today and will run until December 31st, 2018